The finished piece:
Total time was 5 hours and 11 minutes. As mentioned earlier, the initial linework took an hour and 35 minutes, while the flat colour took 13 and a half minutes. Yesterday, I spent three hours and 23 minutes adding shading, shine, and fixing a couple details. I also added a simple background for interest.
It used to take longer to create an image like this as I was previously using Illustrator 9. I'm now using CS3 with livepaint for colouring, which helps to speed things up.
I've made a 1440 x 900 wallpaper with this image, but if you would like another size, please request and I will upload to the Midori Forest Google Group.
Here's a comparison image that shows my initial pencil sketch, the sketch darkened and cleaned up, and the final piece side by side:
The pencil sketch was completed on a bus and I didn't have an eraser on me at the time, so it's a bit rougher than usual. I try not to sketch on lined paper normally, as the lines don't disappear seamlessly; but it's not really a problem when I create illustrations like this.
And a closeup of the final piece, so that you can get a better idea of the detail I include:
I had some slight technical difficulties with my artblog over the last day that I've since resolved. Sorry for any interruption, but everything should be working now.