Alina Chau works as a 3D character animator, storyboard artist and concept artist. She also teaches CG animation classes at a university. When she’s not doing that she’s… drawing.
Her blog, Ice Cream Monster Toon Cafe, seldom features her professional work but is, instead, focused on the drawings and designs she does for the joy of it. These are often ink and watercolor sketches of everyday scenes around her adopted home of Los Angeles and travel sketches, as well as the results of her frequent participation in the Illustration Friday exercises.
You will also find life drawings, sketches for personal projects, cartoon drawings, and fanciful doodles of all kinds. The pieces I like best, though, are her quick, breezy sketches from life, whether from her immediate everyday surroundings or from her travels.
She has just released a book of her travel sketches, Alina’s Travel Journal, that collects her sketches of places like Las Vegas, Disney World Florida, the Grand Canyon, Joshua Tree State Park, San Francisco and San Diego, as well as scenes closer to home in Los Angeles.
I don’t think there is a specific “preview” of the book except in the form of the existing blog posts among her other designs and images.
Some of her designs show the influence of Chinese ink painting, and you can sometimes see the character of her concept design work, but her sketches from life are mostly straightforward, a quick ink line and watercolor capture of her immediate impressions of a scene. Her ink lines are accented, more than filled, with bright splashes of watercolor. Her colors are applied in a loose manner that suggests a quick impression rather than rendering, giving them a feeling of immediacy and informality.