I was recently contacted by Haley Luna, the proud mother of Kevin the Tortoise, to tell me that my work was featured on his official Facebook page. You may have seen Kevin under “Image Design” in the work section of my website. I originally came across Kevin when Kara, my wife, found him on Pinterest. Kara instantly fell in love with this little tortoise—so for Valentine’s day this year, I wanted to surprise her with a poster of Kevin that she could hang up at her office.
Since the original image file was such low resolution, I did what any good little designer would do and improvise. I pulled Kevin into Illustrator and created different paths to outline the scene. Next I brought the vectors into Photoshop to collage, shade and color. I used some of my own textures, as well as some free textures found online to develop a cozy cloth motif. Then I painstakingly went over each layer, shading and coloring with my Wacom stylus until it was just right. Finally I created a depth of field lens blur for the different elements to mimic the aperture settings of the original photograph. The end result was great—and it’s all thanks to the wonderful, original photo by Haley.
It’s crazy how we can live in such a big world and yet stay so connected. Kevin’s photo has traveled around the world and back. It inspired me to create a loving piece of artwork for my wife—which somehow found it’s way back to the original (anonymous) photographer who was able to connect with me. That’s the power of the Internet and social networking.
Check out Kevin’s official Facebook page for more photos.