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Saturday, July 11, 2015

Logging the Fun - for almost seven years!

I have spent quite a few hours over the last few days working on getting a small sketch to the point where I liked a digital version of it. I get a total joy out of working with Illustrator. Using it to recreate an idea takes away my shaky hand effect and also allows me to experiment with changes rapidly. And Photoshop offers so many fun ways to experiment with any graphic or photo that I can't resist taking either one into it for some playtime. 

The hours when I'm working/playing with Illustrator and Photoshop kind of fly by on me. And it can result in ten images, not just the one I aimed for at the start. But I make the effort afterwards to log what I've done (whether I'm happy with it or not) in an InDesign document. Below are the logs that show me the journey this little sketch has taken - from some efforts I didn't really like a few weeks ago ...

It was a black and white sketch, so that's how I started it!

... to all the fun I had today with it.

The color made it pop!
I didn't always log things. And keeping up the logs takes time. I used to be a FrameMaker expert - what an awesome documentation tool that was! But I decided in 2009 that I was going to have to switch to InDesign and learn it because that's the way documentation projects were going. I needed something to document, so I started my first annual "Worklog" in InDesign and started recording the starting image, the ending image and a summary of the steps in between. My first annual log was 301 pages! Using InDesign regularly has kept my skills sharp enough with it to help with other documentation projects like formatting books and stories for friends who write.

But the biggest payoff, now, looking back over the almost seven years of maintaining these logs is that it gives me a record of my digital work. I can't count the times my logs have helped me find the original file or sketch that a work was started from, reminded me of what I was doing with some graphic and why, or just helped me pull something up to rework or print. (Finding any of those images from 2003 when I first started doing digital - through 2008 before I started the logs is pretty hit or miss. I didn't realize then how much was going to change over time. That was at least three computers ago, and five software updates - where are those files now?)

I know some artists journal, others maintain photo files and some lose track of things like I did all those years before. Logging is working for me! And InDesign has ended up being the perfect tool for this type of log. I'm so glad I started and hope I keep it up!


A log a year for almost seven years!

2 comments:

  1. Wow! Impressive! Great habit, wish I could do likewise but I am lucky to get to the paperwork twice a year. Love your discipline.

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  2. Great blog Kathy, you are so dedicated and organized but so whimsical and fantastical in your art!!

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