What am I up to now? (Instagram)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Happy Holidays!!

This is a winter Promo I did for my art rep.  I did this in watercolor and a bit of digital. Ordered the postcards early last week, should be getting it in the mail soon! If you want a free postcard of this illustration, please like my facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/isabellakungillustrations
 and email me your address to info@isabellakung.com

Thank you for following and a HAPPY HOLIDAY to you!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

A Sneeze is a......

A new illustration of a poem! The target audience is 2 months to 2 years, so I decided to keep it really really simple. The trickiest part is trying to depict a sneeze without it looking too violent or gross, since the poem described a sneeze as a breeze. Heres the color comps I tried out, with votes from my friends and critique group, the one of the right was chosen.


Heres a iphone pic of  it close up,
 Below is the color accurate scanned version :)
ahhhhhHHHH CHOO!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Hello Autumn

Last week, I went on an interview With William Sonoma, knowing that they probably like some seasonal or pattern work, I created these 2 sample pieces to show them along with my regular portfolio.

Don't you just love the colors of Autumn?

On top of that I also reworked the background on my Fruit Tart painting.
Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Demo for my watercolor class, showing them examples of how to use collage in their artwork.

Top: Work in Progress and sketch
Bottom : Finished fresh today!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Rich Piggy

Last week I painted this pig as a demo for my watercolor class:

I loved how smug he turned out! So I decided to make a character out of him......lil suit, smoking a pipe and glasses, did the trick! Here he is now:

I used watercolor, color pencil and digitally collaged them together as they were done on separate pieces of paper. When trying out different fonts and phrases, I realized no one I knew know the word "BOSH"! It means nonsense or foolish or unacceptable behavior.

I debated about changing it to something like "Don't be Ridiculous" or "Poppycock", but the tone and feel of "BOSH" just sounds so perfect to me. I think it suits that reaction of total disregard, annoyance and arrogance. My husband just convinced me that I don't need to change or dumb down for the audience, they should get that tone. Plus, it does make the piggy sound more like of a selfish elitist. So I kept it.

Wonder why that word came so naturally to me, is it a british thing? Maybe I still gotz some good old hong kong british chingurish in me :)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Happy Birthday big brother!

This is dedicated to my big brother Jimmy, it's his birthday this upcoming Friday!
We have a 7 year age difference and we sort of grew apart when he left to study abroad in America when he was 17 years old (and I was only 10). It wasn't until my wedding when he flew all the way from Austin to SF, that we became reacquainted. We actually have a lot more similarities than I once thought. Unfortunately I don't remember much from my childhood, we had the standard older/younger sibling teasing and fighting relationship. But one thing I remember most is that I used to sit on his lap and watch him play PC games all the time. Diablo was one of them.

Even though we aren't the closest sibling in the world, I'm still very proud and glad to have him as my big brother. Happy Birthday Jimmy!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Sammy Book #2

After another 4 months, Sammy book #2 is finally completed!
While I'm not particularly religious, I have nothing against religion. Sammy is a curious and dedicated little boy that tries every which way to truly understand God, Jesus and his believe. It was a delight to work with B&H publishing, thanks to Dan Lynch, Diana, Tom Blackaby and Rick Osborne.
Here is a sneak peak!

Book 1 and book 2 side by side

Monday, September 2, 2013

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Vanished but back again!

Yikes it's been a bit more than a month since I last posted. Sorry about that. Whenever I get busy I just drop everything else. I'm very grateful for a patient husband and friends that are willing to bare with me for periods of time where I don't do anything but work and sleep/eat.

These last 2.5 months has been the most intense work schedule I've ever experienced! I was averaging about 10 hours of work a day (no weekends!) while dealing with an insane sleep schedule.

I am accustomed to the night owl lifestyle since I work with so much focus at night. With a pressing freelance deadline and teaching a full part time hours, it was no time for me to adjust to an earlier sleeping habit. One of my class on Monday and Thursday required me to get up at 7 am, so sometimes if I worked on my freelance till 6am I just ended up staying up and head to class. On top of that I was having my first experience teaching online, and that took up sooooo much of my time! Long story short, it is simply not for me, I do not have the ability to let go and devote less time and energy to my online class. Plus I really enjoy the connection I have with onsite student, as well as chatting and catching up with other faculties.

Usually I work on teaching and emailing during the day, at night I focus on my freelance work. I made much progress on the Sammy book #2: Finished all the line drawings, made the revisions and have completed 1/3 of the color so far. Unfortunately can't post any of that yet, but here is an ink demo of an Owl I did for my AE: Intro to Illustration students. I made copies and gave them out at the end of the semester. They were a great group of kids, some are so talented and hardworking! They gave me the sweetest Birthday card, orchestrated by the sweetest coworker Yuka.

Right now i'm wrapping up the semester, one more day left, after I submit the final grade then I'm done with teaching for the Summer. All I have planned for the next 3 weeks is just finish the rest of my freelance project and finally, FINALLY, catch up on some sleep and social life. :)

Monday, June 24, 2013

Brief Update and a few Plein Air

Boy! Its been a while since I last posted! I am so bad blogging...
Life have been so hectic lately, many new changes and opportunities!

I'm teaching more at Academy of Art University this summer semester. So I have been very busy preparing for my classes. On top of that I am working on my second Sammy book. This time it is titled "Sammy Experiences Jesus". Speak of which, I just noticed the first book is published!! I can't wait to get my copy. http://kids.bhpublishinggroup.com/products/sammy-experiences-god/ 

Unfortunately, with my new work load, I had to hand in my 2 weeks notice at the Art studio (for kids/teens). I'm going to miss those kids.

In other news, The illustration Directory of 3X3 magazine is online now! So honored to be selected. I'm waiting for my copy in the mail. Please go to this link and check out the other artists! http://www.3x3directory.com/children.html

Sadly I don't have much new work to show, most of my freelance work is still under NDA and I haven't got much spare time to do any personal work.... I miss that, can't wait to work on some of my own stuff once the I finish up some of my projects. For now, here are some Plein Air studies. I definitely need more practice!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Painting models and student work

It's been awhile since I painted live models. I forgot how much fun it is!! You can see so much details and so many variety of color when painting live, especially in the shadows. All of that information gets lost in photos. The other thing thats great about painting live is that you get to train yourself to make quick decisions. Most of my work is done in my studio, and every illustration I've painted had a value or color study done ahead of time, solving all the issues I may have before starting my final piece.

Here is a photo of me painting next the THE Bill Sanchez!

That was probably workshop was probably the highlight of these last few weeks. (Thanks George!)
Other than that I've been busy teaching and working on a flyer for the Institute of Reading Development. I can't post anything about the flyer just yet due to NDA. Though I can show you some of my student's work. They just completed their animal project. I'm very proud! Some of them have no previous experience in painting at all.

This week project is an simple environment project using watercolor and collage. Can't wait to see their final results. :)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Rebranding / Makeover

Yay! My rebranding / makeover project is finally complete! This was a personal project I've been thinking about for a long long time. I finally got the chance to tackle it this year and I'm really happy with the results. Heres where the process started:

I redesigned my entire printed portfolio with this idea in mind: little spot illustrations of kids reading on every 2 pages of the portfolio, which all of the spots will then compile into a frame for my title page. One of the spots will be used on my business card. The fabric cover with the tied ribbon DIY look was suggested by a good friend Shawna Chan. Thanks girl!

This project took much longer than I've ever expected, about 2 months from the very beginning. I didn't realize that even for such a simple design and theme, it can take so much to make it just right. I must of gone through the whole thing 4 to 5 times nudging and changing font settings, and as you can see from previous blog posts, it took me forever to just decide on the title font. I am so glad I did not go into graphic design! A BIG thank you to my wonderful critique group, Arthur, Sara, Yuki for giving my your honest opinions and helpful suggestions!

After all the design work is completed, came my most dreaded process: printing and color matching. Thank you Dax for teaching me, the prints came out great! Then I cut and crafted the whole thing in one night in order to make it for a mixer at Chronicles.

Heres a few snaps of the business cards and portfolio:

Lastly, it was redesigning my website to match. My dear huzzband put together all my newly designed files and created my new website in just a few days! My hero!

Here is a screenshot of the new website:
Please come visit and check out the rest of the site:

Hope you all like the new look and thanks for dropping by!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Business card and title page

Thank you all for voting your preferences! Interestingly, so far the votes is split about 50/50. So I'll try this again with the 2 fonts in the finalized versions:

I was really frustrated last week when I finally got around to do my 1st test print. I realized the dimensions stated on the label of my portfolio was WRONG. I had to go back and nudge the heck out of 30 pages, I almost wanted to call and complain, but......"ain't nobody got time for that!"

Also these are the new business card designs, I have 2 different front versions, as well as 2 back versions. I've tried with the 2 fonts for all of them. Which combination do you all prefer?

 I like the top font better for the front of the card, but the bottom font better for the simpler back of the card. This has turned out to be the most split decision I've ever had to made!

5:30 am already? I guess I should stop starting at these and sleep on it for now.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Fruit tart & port update

So first things first! Here is the properly scanned Fruit Tart painting I did few weeks ago as promised. 

Whats up lately? Got really busy lately preparing for teaching and tutoring for the new Spring semester at Academy of Art University. While on the side, since Early January, I've been working on reinventing the layout/presentation of my portfolio! Here is a sneak of my title page:

I'm still undecided on the title font. Down to these last 2 choices, after eliminating 3 other fonts with the help of a few friends. I will be delighted to hear your preference! This personal project of mine is definitely turning our to be much more work than I've anticipated. The concept alone took me forever to finalize. Turns out when it comes to personal work, I tend to over-thinking things and being indecisive, sometimes less is more! All of those little spots/drawings around my Title will also appear through out my portfolio. I would also redesign my website as well as business card with this theme unifying my "brand".

I'm almost done with the layout. Next week comes my most dreaded stage...PRINTING. This time not only do have to battle with my printer (which often thinks there is a paper jam, instead it is just thicker paper that it suppose to accept) and color correcting, I also have have have to make sure it prints exactly where it should, and not half an inch towards the bottom because the printer moved it up too much.

Hope I get this all done before March when my next project starts! crossing my fingers!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The start of a new year

After a much needed break last December, I'm excited to start the new year! I decided to finally put my foot down and work on redesigning the layout of my printed portfolio and website. New year new look right? I realized last year I hesitated a lot in starting, partially because I was busy, but when i did have the free time, I kept changing my concept time and time again, and hence never really started.

When January rolled around. I decided I've had it and returned the 2nd idea I had wayyyyy back. So far so good, I promise I will blog about it when its ready! ;)

On the other hand heres a food painting and full fig charcoal drawings I did this month. I absolutely looooveee painting food! must do more of that soon!

 Work in progress~

This is just a crappy Iphone photo of my finished painting. I'll post the better scanned version later:

I did this charcoal drawing because I needed to get approved for foundation tutoring, sadly I did not digitally archive a lot of my student work in charcoal. Though it was nice to revisit this medium, reminds me of the good O' student days