The Lite shines again

MARCH 29, 2010

After moving to New York hoping to get a job as a graphic designer, no one was more surprised than I to discover I was an illustrator. I had studied design in school, didn't have a "style" to fall into and did all my work with templates and technical pens. I quickly kludged together a technique where I screen printed line art onto Arches paper and colored it with Dr. Martin's dies. While this provided a way for me to create full color art, the resulting color separations sucked, and eventually I fell back into doing mechanical art which provided much more control over color. When computers started gaining acceptance in publishing, I seemed a perfect candidate for digital tools, however, as powerful as the computer is for doing good, it can quickly lure you off in the wrong direction.

I spent a few years trying every imaginable trick and filter, but was never quite satisfied because the finished pieces always lacked the spontaneity of my sketches. This concern grew until one day I took a sketch, traced it line for line with Illustrator paths and shifted the fills out of register intentionally. On that day, Pelavo Lite was born. It served me well for hundreds of jobs until I started getting more involved in higher paying assignments like book jackets and magazine covers, and let it gradually fall by the wayside.

I always enjoyed the freedom and creativity "lite" allowed, looked at it again recently and realized, 1) I still love doing it, 2) it's the perfect solution for shrinking budgets & quick turnaround, 3) it's a natural for animation, and 4) allows me to concentrate on concept and let the form follow intuitively. So I've gathered up my kindergarten-level Flash programming skills, put together the new Pelavo Lite web page, and I'm not looking back.

"Help Desk" was the inaugural illustration of Pelavo Lite. Rough sketch is on right.

Because I really liked  the connectiion between sketch and finish, I promoted my work with a series of postcards with art on the front and sketches (flopped) on the back. You could hold the card in the light and see how they related to each other.

This card featured subjects including, funny money, Super Mario in analysis, computer "chirps" and the taboo against facial tattoos (since overturned).
Speedy modems, science projects & software migration.
Inflated product claims, canned support & undersea oil.
Digital lighting, certified spam & a hockey puck made of ice.
Internet scams, outraged consumers & flexible retirement plans.
Frozen silence, targeted marketing & nest eggs.
Topical: For one and all