Featured Artist: Pin Up Guru - Cris De Lara

Tue 24th Feb 2015, by Mike Hepburn | Peoplestudios



In 2008, Cris de Lara moved from the sunny shores of Brazil to the chilly mountains of Canada, to work as an art teacher at Niagara College. At around the same time, she opened up her own illustration studio to work for some big name companies, like Harley Davidson, Mattel, Marvel comics, Zenescope entertainment, DeNaCo (a Japanese game company), Idle Games, Present Creative and Fantasy Flight Games.  Despite this constant flow of work for happy clients, Cris managed to find the time to pursue her true passion: painting Pin Ups. Now, her beautiful and unique style has become the main product coming out of her studio, with commissions coming in from all over the world.




Zenescope Cover - Grimm Fairy Tales # 105



CGSociety is privileged to have Cris as an instructor in her wonderful CGWorkshop, which is an action-packed 8 week, online digital art workshop that introduces students to what she calls "Pinupology" - the art of creating attractive, appealing pin-ups and "cheesecake girls'.  In the course, Cris first takes students through the history of Pin Ups in the 20th and 21st century and closely examines key Pin Up masters and their work. Students will look at some of the most famous Pin Up girls, and how they are incorporated today in advertising, comics and games. They'll look at Cartoon and Vintage styles and how they affect the way a pin-up is presented. Students will get to paint their perfect Pin Up. For their final project, Cris will help students choose a style and paint their Pin-up from top to toe (literally!)





You have a unique style, how did that develop?


I think that my style comes from constantly searching for new elements and effects that can make my Pin Ups more attractive, more interesting, beautiful and, importantly, with a story to tell to the audience.





Are you working on something now that you can tell us about?


Yes, I'm working on my art book, which should be released by next year. My licensing contract businesses for my pinups characters are growing more than I was expected! And, I'm also working with comic books; other projects in which I'm working for are protected by NDAs. Therefore I can't say anything really, but what I can say about it is that it involves games and I'm super happy about it!



Sounds great Cris, keep us in the loop!





How do you stay motivated and deal with dreaded art block?


Art block – yes, it happens! What I do is keep my energy and focus in the right direction, and I also avoid getting lost or anxious by writing lists. I do lists for everything that I want to create, develop, read and study. I stick these lists in front of me and refer to them.

For example, I have lists about websites or videos which contain my favourite references. Comics, games, fantasy art, my favourite Pin Ups artists, music and everything that can feed my inspiration. But what really inspires me to create something new is my personal library at home. During many years I've have been collecting many books and magazines about fantasy, fashion, movies, animals, weapons, cars, art and many different things that can get my attention. With all of that I can always get new ideas and in the end. But be careful, there is so much inspiration that you might not have time to draw and paint. LOL!





What is one secret technical tip that you can give us?


With Pin-Ups, make her eyes actually talk! I know that many people think that a beautiful body is subject enough to label a naked girl as a "Pin Ups". But in my opinion a Pin Up girl is much, much more than a beautiful body. A real Pin Up must transmit several messages to the viewer. She must have a great expression that can get the attention of the viewer and help him to understand what she is doing or feeling at the scene. She must tell a story.





What do you cover in your CGWorkshop?


My workshop covers the studies of anatomy, facial expressions, body language, costumes and stereotypes related directly to the Pin Ups universe. At the end of the course the student will create his/her own full Pin Up girl for a promotional Art Piece.


As well as careful and thorough studies of anatomy for digital painters, I haves created videos on what kind of expression and style a pin-up traditionally exudes, and how learning about acting can help convey this. Students will learn about clothing styles and why they are so important to getting a Pin Up right. Students will also work on difficult-to-master areas like hair and skin textures.


All the while students will receive feedback and paint-overs from me, and the enthusiastic support of your classmates via the class forum.



Related links

Cris' CGWorkshop: Painting Perfect Pinups and Cheesecake Girls

Cris DeLara's CGPortfolio

Cris' website

Cris on Linkedin

Cris' Youtube channel



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