How to illustrate a map in a hand-drawn style

March 28, 2014By Alice Ratterree

Recent editorial work for Town Magazine involved an illustrated map of the Swamp Rabbit Trail. The process, while brand new to me, proved to be very rewarding. It began with a conversation with the editor, in which she provided the key places along the trail that would be highlighted. Initial (messy) notes: To start, a soft-green … Read More

Illustration Noir

October 30, 2013By Alice Ratterree

QUI A PEUR DU NOIR? You know that 5 minute window before you actually wake up and are a bit lucid, but still kind of dreaming too? Well, this is a result of that state, the season, and perhaps also as an homage to the dark children’s books frequently produced by French publishers, which I am … Read More

Sketching with paint

October 7, 2013By Alice Ratterree

I love line work, and generally only utilize the pencil and sometimes a pen. Recently, though, I’ve been working with the push and pull of a paintbrush, and I’m very happy with the trembling energy it leaves on the paper. Here’s today’s sketch using watercolor (M. Graham) and a no. 2 Kolinsky sable. I still … Read More

Flat Out Under Pressure: 24 hours to make art

June 9, 2013By Alice Ratterree

The challenge: you have 24 hours to make a work of art. How do you fill the time? On Friday and Saturday, June 7-8, Greenville’s Metropolitan Arts Council held the annual event, Flat Out Under Pressure. A challenge to create a work of art in 24 hours. On Friday morning, we had our surfaces (free … Read More

Worried Owl

May 31, 2013By Alice Ratterree

A horned owl lives in my back yard. Sometimes in the night we hear him calling. My daughter was fascinated by this at first, and answered back. They had a relationship calling back and forth to each other, or so I like to believe. Now the sound of that distant call send her into a … Read More

Town Magazine features Greenville illustrators

May 17, 2013By Alice Ratterree

It’s a dream to live in a town that supports artists. Greenville’s Town Magazine is running a feature this month on four local illustrators. The article, “Illustration Nation”, profiles the lives of four illustrators living in Greenville, SC. Artists Cory Godbey, Justin Gerard, Bonnie Adamson, and myself-Alice Ratterree-had the opportunity to share our journey into the business and what drives … Read More

How To Use Collage For Visual Reference

March 4, 2013By Alice Ratterree

A blank sheet of paper can be intimidating for both writers and illustrators. Nothing else can inspire creativity and instill fear both at the same time. Even when I can “see” the finished image in my head, it doesn’t just flow out onto the paper. A writer re-writes rather than writes, and an illustrator needs … Read More