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100 Degrees Celsius: A Junior Personal Illustration by Atenea Duenas (2019)

The Personal Illustration Project was assigned towards the weeks before Exhibition as a project in Digital Media where we could draw whatever we wished, as long as it was done so using the program Adobe Illustrator. While Illustrator may be a helpful tool at creating excellent, high quality logos, it only frustrated me when trying to draw more sketchy art pieces, since it was confusing for me to discover how to utilize it properly without difficulty. I was much more accustomed to and comfortable with the program Photoshop. However, I do believe this experience was very helpful in stimulating my mind and helping me become a bit more familiar with Illustrator, and the challenge was an interesting one.

This drawing an interesting process for me, since I did not know what I was going to draw. I doodled different things, but none of them motivated me to complete and refine them to a finished product. I dug in the recesses of my mind, eventually coming to an entertaining idea that I could follow through with. I used an abandoned idea for an animated documentary we were assigned, since we had to come up with at least three different ones, addressing different issues and subjects. It was going to be a sort of metaphorical manifestation of stress, and people were to be represented by talking kettles on their heads as I interviewed students taking challenging courses in my high school. I would ask them what impact the experience had on them, and the inevitable stress it causes. And when the heat would get to be too much, they would begin to boil, showing the effect stress can have on the brain, which is the sort of experience I have had in the past.

I like odd imagery, so a tea kettle head was pretty fun to illustrate. The person in the image is wearing a white collared shirt and plain tie, sort of trying to imply a person in a stressful working environment as the strain gets to them. The pressure was symbolized by the differently shaded red clouds, and as they get closer to enveloping the tea kettle, they get brighter while the tensions increase. There is steam coming out of the kettle's lid and spout, implying that the water is becoming very hot, showing the internal struggle of the person as they keep it inside. I used a gradient to color the kettle because I wanted to give a realistic vibe to it while contrasting the cartoonish body, giving a more stark feeling to the kettle, hence drawing more attention to the kettle itself. I really wanted it to shine the most over everything else in the image, which was only be there to better convey the message and emotion I attempted to portray. Related website
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