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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Transferring Risk

Here is a piece I finished last week for Soojin.
It is for an article about "transferring risk of pension fund",
and going to be published in the PLANSPONSOR European edition launch issue.

The final.


The initial sketch.

Monday, March 15, 2010

There's no magic, only hardwork!

Graduation is coming up, have been feeling uneasy lately.
I know that I want to be a freelance illustrator but there are many times I am not sure if I am good enough.
I have always wondered how well-known illustrators get started in the beginning so I decided to try my luck and e-mailed one of my favorite illustrators, Emiliano Ponzi. He wrote back to me and gave me some really thoughtful advises.
Ponzi wrote :
"keep in mind that there isn't a magic formula so do the best you can, send your work around and keep your finger crossed....if the feedback will be negative, work on other images send them around and keep.........over and over."
Frankly, it was quite comforting to learn that Ponzi is a mortal and it wasn't magic behind his amazing effortless looking works. I guess the saying: " it takes a lot of works to look effortless" is true after all.
Ponzi also shared this LA times article with me. It is about writers' career but a lot of the concepts are application to illustrators' life. The article mentioned that the people who eventually succeed are not the most naturally-talented ones but the ones who endure and persist. I found this really thought provoking and somehow encouraging, because,
I dont know if I get talent or not, but sure, I know I can work hard and endure.

FINALLY, A WEBSITE!

I have at last finished my website....
http://victo-ngai.com/

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Awarded scholarship by the NY SOI!!




"The New Standard"(lion) and "Boy on bear" (bear)are the two pieces that got into the NY SOI Student scholarship Competition Show 2010.
The lion one is awarded $4000 (sweeeeet!)Nancy Lee Rhodes Robers Scholarship Award.

It was also selected into the COMMUNICATION ART ANNUAL 2010.
The bear one and the melon heroes piece(below) were selected into the West 48 Show by LA Society of Illustration Show 2010 as well.


These pieces were done last year with the guidance from Chris Buzelli and Soojin Buzelli.
The lion and the bear were published in Soojin's magazines: PLANADVISER and PLANSPONSOR.

It's really exciting and sort of surreal to have received these honors all of a sudden.
The last time I remember winning something was in elementary school.

I think I was really lucky to have taken Chris' class.
I learnt not only how to approach illustrations in a conceptual way but also how to be honest with myself.
My works have changed drastically for better since then.
For a while, I was trying to force a style on myself by looking at and mimicking my heroes' works(funny enough, a lot of them were oil-painters).
That didn't go well. I learnt from Chris that "style" was often overstated, it should merely means the way we think and draw naturally.
Therefore style can not be found outside, but should be discovered and cultured inside.


Final of the op-ed assignment



Final of the op-ed spot illustration assignment done with Chris Buzelli.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/25/opinion/25brendon.html?ref=opinion




















Layout mock-up!



I also tried to see how the jenga can work in a full-page illustration just for fun.

Op-ed assignment with Chris Buzelli

I am doing an independent study with Chris Buzelli this semester and we decided to do an op-ed spot illustration for the article "Like Rome Before the Fall? Not Yet"
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/25/opinion/25brendon.html?ref=opinion
Here are 3 ideas I came up with:
I was trying to visualize the problems, which brough down Roman and British empire, into a monster going for the USA.

A jenga metaphor of the danger of expansion. The idea that we have decided on.
The evolution of empires.

Chris and I were both fond of this idea but there are too much details for the op-ed spot. I am thinking of making it into a poster. Chris suggested I can leave the last step of the USA evolution blank, I think that's really smart. "Say more with less" and " don't underestimate the readers"were the lesson learnt.


I am not sure how to title my first blog.

In a little more than 3 months' time, I will be graduation from Rhode Island School of Design and be done with school for a long time, if not forever.
So what am I gonna do after college?
I had the vision of becoming an archaeologist when I was in kindergarten.( I did not really knowing what it means but thought that it was a really cool and big word.) Then I went through the list of "architect, lyricist, rich woman, nihilist, artist.etc" in the course of elementary school and secondary school.
Lately I have come to the conclusion that I want to be a freelance illustrator.
After talking with Chris Buzelli and Dadu Shin, I learnt that blogging is an important networking and promo tool for freelance illustrators. So that's why I am typing this right now.
I am still a virgin to online journal, so pardon me for being awkward.