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Erykah Badu Process

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A few weeks ago I was lucky enough get a call from Vibe Magazine to work on a portrait of Erykah Badu. Now, I’ve done a fairly large amount of portraiture over my career (don’t get me wrong, I’m no Philipe Burke or Steve Brodner) — but this one was a surprise — seldom do I get the chance to illustrate someone … well……… pretty (perhaps for obvious reasons).

Putting my penchant for wrinkles and sly-looking eyes aside, which is what happens when you draw too many politicians — I dove into this collaboration all excited like! As you can see, the roughs went a bit all over the map, but I was happy to give a solid collection of options, ranging from ‘classic portrait’ (chosen for the final) to semi-cubist to imagery inside her silhouetted body.

Plenty to see below, or check out the final Erykah Badu illustration

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This first one is likely my favourite option… that said, the final was totally fun.

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Above is the version taken to final.

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This last idea was adapted from earlier process work for The Oxford American on the essay “Harpy”

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