COMD 2313 Introduction to Illustration, Tuesdays FA2018

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  • Week 2: Jillian Tamaki, Idea Generation
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    Sara Gómez Woolley

    Please Read Jillian Tamaki, Idea Generation

    In a few sentences discuss the article. Consider questions like:

    What are Concepts? What methods does Jillian Tamaki use to generate hers?

    Are there specific steps she takes?

    Do you have other methods you use to generate ideas unique to your process?

    Be sure to read eachother’s observations BEFORE posting your own.


    Timothy Dennis

    Jillian Tamaki’s article discusses how to generate concepts, which are pssible solutions an illustrator can use to solve a particular problem. Jillian Tamaki’s method begins by becoming interested in the subject and to start collecting reference, and to treat the reference material with seriousness. This reminds me of when we were going over the first major project that we should become the biggest fan of whatever we are doing. This makes sense because you are more likely to do a better job working on something you care about than something you don’t care about.


    Laura Wong

    Concepts are ideas. The method Jillian Tamaki uses to create her concepts are: to be interested, collect media, take the course content seriously, start with words, add images, mix, and build thumbnails to final sketches. Jillian Tamaki uses words to get her ideas out then she uses images to reference that idea, and mixes words that she brainstorms earlier to composition different types of concepts.

    One should absorb everything around them to find inspiration and create a novel concept. If you find something you like, then you should save it or reference it. It will help build your concepts later. I do not have any other methods that I use to generate ideas that are unique to my process. Most of my methods are like Jillian Tamaki except for brainstorming words or to combine them when I create my concepts but trying it from time to time it seems very useful when you can’t think of or create an image from the tip of your mind.


    Concepts are possible ideas for an illustration. When Jillian Tamaki generate her concepts, she would first have to be interested in a certain media, whether it’s by reading a book or watching a movie. Then she would collect and save that media as references, and she would take it seriously. Jillian would start off using words as a foundation, which is a fast way to manipulate concepts. After she would add images that are associated with the words. Then, Jillian mixes it all together and finally uses them to brainstorm some thumbnails for her sketches. I don’t have any unique methods that I use to generate my concepts. My methods are similar to Jillian Tamaki’s; I find interest in a media, save the media, and take its contents seriously. However, sometimes I tend to jump right into drawing out the concepts that immediately comes to mind without using words or images.


    Yimei Han

    Jillian defines concepts are ideas which can communicate with viewers. She makes use of everything as references, whatever it’s man made or nature created. She gets interested in what she is doing and immersing herself in it. I think most of us generate ideas take similar steps as hers. But in my case, I don’t read too much. Because I think visual references inspire me faster than the contents. Even so, I still agree with what Jillian said contents can help with our imagination. I might try to read more when I stuck in somewhere from now on.


    Alex Victoria

    Concepts are ideas that can stem from anything and mean many things. Most of all concepts should be able to communicate with the viewers. Jillians way of generating her concepts starts with words. After using that to mold and get an idea for concepts, she finds images. Add them to the concepts to see how well they work. Once that is done she is able to have a foundation to move into her thumbnails and final sketches. For me personally I feel I use similar steps to reach my final sketches. I like to research and see work similar so I know what to avoid along with getting inspired. I feel there is inspiration all around us so our surroundings should help influence us whenever we need that boost of inspiration. Everyone works differently and has their own methods which I find most amazing about people.



    Jillian Tamaki’s article discusses a way to come up with concepts. Concepts are ideas that can portray many things/topics. The methods that Jillian Tamaki uses are: Be Interested, Collect That Media, Take The Source Content Seriously, Start With Words, Add Images, Mix, and lastly Build Up Thumbnails To Finished Sketches. She does take specific steps in her process to generate ideas but one of the steps that I found most interesting was one we went over in class which was to become a fan of the content you are illustrating for. The part that I found most interesting and helpful about this was to carefully notice detailed text such as vivid imagery, notable quotes, and so on. I don’t have any different methods but I was lacking some of these steps she took. I did pick up a lot of important details I should pay attention to next time I am generating concepts.


    Edward Alston

    Concepts are ideas that can be bad or good and can relate to many different topics. To generate ideas Jillian Tamaki goes through a process that starts with Being Interested because the best way to get something done is to be interested in what you’re doing. Jillian’s other steps are Consume Media, Find Inspiration, Collect That Media, Take The Source Content Seriously, Start WIth Words, Add Images, Mix, and Build Up a Thumbnail. These steps help Jillian, and other artists who use this process or similar processes, to come up with ideas for their illustrations. These steps are very useful personally because a lot of times I may get stuck trying to figure out what to create and remembering to do these steps help move the creative thought process along. Using these steps also save time because you spend less time just sitting down and try to scrape the inside of your brain for an idea. My way of generating ideas are pretty much the same.


    Yong Wu

    Jillian Tamaki introduces her methods of how to generate concepts, which includes to be interested, collect media, take the course content seriously, start with words, add images, mix, and build thumbnails to finished sketches. Jillian Tamaki states, “concepts are Ideas”, all the good designs are started by ideas, we collect ideas from brainstorming and quick sketches or do the research on the Internet. And I’m totally agree with her point that a successful piece, we must communicate our idea to the viewer because a good idea can connect the feeling of the viewer. I usually do my design like the process of Jillian Tamaki but my process is simpler than her, my process has four steps, which has barnstorming, research, start the design and refine it. After I read this article, I will use Jillian Tamaki’s methods as the references, especially the step of mix because I always stuck in the middle of the design. mix all the information from the research and my brainstorming and quick sketches. It may help me open a new view in my mind and develop a better design.


    Isabella Gomez

    Concepts are ideas that you come up with, with the intent of eventually executing it as a creative project. Jillian makes some good points, those of which I already took into consideration with my process. She mentions getting immersed in culture, because that is a great source of inspiration. Find things that you are already interested in, things that you are intrigued by, and keep them on file in a reference folder.

    This is actually something that I have been doing for a while. When I am in a slump, I like to watch movies. Lots of sci – fi, sometimes horror. But they’re mostly always old films. Visually stunning movies like Blade Runner or Suspiria inspire me. Content that other great minds make help me come up with my content and my own visual vocabulary.

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