Several strokes lead to intriguing illustrations



Josh Campbell, 20, art major, is often inspired by famous illustrators such as, Tetsuya Nomura, Hayao Miyazaki, Sakimichan, and of course Walt Disney. Photo credit: Alisa Banks

Illustrations don’t call for immediate attention; they invoke a deeper meaning and add personality.

More than a simple sketch or basic object, an illustration takes time.

The illustration speaks in many ways the voice cannot.

Joshua Campbell is a 20-year-old illustration and communications major, currently in his third year at El Camino. Campbell’s dream is to one-day work for Disney or a major video-game company.

He is often seen smiling—flashing his braces. His style consists of graphic tees and preppy sweaters. When Campbell is not around friends he is seen with his headphones on listening to DNCE, while shaking his leg along the vibrant rhythm.

Campbell began to draw at the age of 13, when he wanted to try and draw his favorite anime characters.

He has since then sharpened his pencils and tossed a few papers here and there, because “to create, one has to be open for improvement,” Campbell said.

Ezequiel Paez, a friend since high school, believes that Campbell “has a lot of dedication to what he does and the luxury of making his drawings the best he can.”

Campbell’s competitive side came out to further his drawing career, when he found out that his favorite comic book publisher was hosting a contest; the winning prize was a guitar.

Campbell incorporated a character from one of the publisher’s comics and added the character holding the prize guitar.

“Sadly,” Campbell didn’t win the contest, but he remembers that moment fondly, the adrenaline as he waited to see if he could be the winner was well worth it.

Campbell takes a lot of inspiration from anime video game franchises, including the “Final Fantasy” and the “Kingdom Hearts” franchises, with the latter being more important to him.

Photo credit: Alisa Banks

Elements of Disney were mixed in the KH franchise, which was very appealing to Campbell. Terra the protagonist wore a shiny armor suit.

After watching a cutscene from the game, Campbell had to draw Terra, with the armor suit drawing him in.

“It was definitely my most challenging piece of art to date, taking about two days to finish,” Campbell said.

Campbell received a lot of positive feedback from family and friends for the Terra drawing, making it even more of a treasure to him.

Though Campbell is not currently taking any art classes, instead focusing on general education courses, he previously took an illustrations class taught by Richard Ewing here on campus.

Being that it was a more introductory course, Ewing still thinks Campbell is heading in the right direction with his work.

“He’s got a lot of really good ideas,” Ewing said. “Overall, he’s a creative person and I could certainly see him going into it (art career).”

A lot of inspiration behind Campbell’s illustrations also come from some of his favorite cartoon series, including the characters SpongeBob SquarePants and Ichigo, from the anime series “Bleach.”

Josh Campbell, 20, art major, uses graphite to draw some of his favorite characters. He's also a fan of Charcoal, Markers, and Prisma color pencils. Photo credit: Alisa Banks

Campbell also cites his favorite American comic publisher as Marvel, while his favorite Japan-based publisher Shonen Jump.

Campbell added that the same way he processes and figures out which sunglasses look best on him, he applies that to his art. He might draw a face numerous ways just to find the right fit.

“I just put the pencil to paper and draw until I feel satisfied,” he said.

*Reporting by Daisy Magdaleno and Grant Hermanns*

EDITOR’S NOTE May 8, 2016 9:13 p.m.: Proper reporting credit added.