Lizzie Nichols is a Los Angeles-based visual development and concept artist. Currently at Paramount Animation, she has worked for Sony Pictures Animation, DreamWorks Television Animation, RGH Entertainment, Rough Draft Studios, and Walt Disney Imagineering. She is originally from Connecticut and received a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art from Wellesley College in Massachusetts in 2003. She graduated from Art Center College of Design in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in Entertainment Design.
For Zócalo’s latest Sketchbook, Nichols gives us a closer look at one of Southern California’s greatest features—our natural light. It’s this brilliant light that first drew the movie business to our fair city, so it is perhaps appropriate for Nichols—an industry veteran—to give it top billing. From luminous palm and maple leaves to glowing cactus needles and sparkling dew drops on a spider web, natural light has the starring role in her impressionistic vignettes of Californian flora. It’s worth noting that these scenes may have the feel of plein air paintings, but are, in fact, painted digitally.