Thursday, November 13, 2014

Make Art That Sells Week 2 - Home Decor

My completed assignment for MATS wk2

Week 2 of MATS was Home Decor. Our assignment was (drumroll please) design a set of plates with a Suzani motif! What is a Suzani you ask? Wikipedia defines it as:

"a type of embroidered and decorative tribal textile made in TajikistanUzbekistanKazakhstan and other Central Asian countries. Suzani is from the Persian سوزن Suzan which means needle. The art of making such textiles in Iran is called سوزنکاری Suzankāri (needlework)."

First off let me begin by saying I had no idea what a Suzani was. I've certainly seen this type of needlework and home decor inspired by Suzani's but I had NO idea what it was called or what the origins were. So I began week 2 learning something new. (Oooh that rhymed!) I have designed plates for party goods before so I had some experience designing plates (even if they were only paper) but party supplies and home decor are definitely very distinct. 

Here are some images of my sketches:

First up was researching Suzani's, obviously then came the sketches. Choosing colors was probably the most time consuming because I am extremely indecisive when it comes to color (as I might have mentioned). Once I settled on color swatches all I had to worry about was coloring of my sketches which I used image trace for.  I pretty much had the layout done in my sketches as you can see. This was probably made easier for me because I do have that background designing for party and paper. 

Above is a screenshot of my work in progress. As you can see I started off with a grey ground on the larger plate. As I played around I scaled things differently and changed color (a lot) but I think the end result was well worth it. I am really pleased with how the collection of plates turned out. The background I downloaded from a free texture site and the photos of the plates for the mockup was shared by a fellow classmate (which was really useful and appreciated!). All I did was adjust the contrast of the plates to brighten them up and I isolated them from their background and placed them on the wood texture then I copied and pasted my vector art into Photoshop and used the Multiply layer filter to make the images look like they are really on the plate. Easy peasy!

This week was really fun. I learned a lot and I got to draw things that I draw on a daily basis which made it very easy for me. I didn't make the cutoff for the Flickr group, unfortunately because I had my kids that weekend and NO time to work on the assignment but I worked on them all Sunday night until they were done, despite not being able to officially hand in the assignment. Yes. I am dedicated. =)

Now I'm off to work on week 4's assignment which is a bit of a struggle. Week 3's post is going to be a really fun one so stay tuned!!

Keep drawing

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Make Art That Sells Week 1 - Bolt Fabric!

As you may remember in my last post I mentioned that I was taking Lilla Roger's Make Art That Sells e-course. This is a bit late seeing as I have just started week 3 of the course but I have been BUSY. Busier than I have been in a long time. The course is really pushing me, inspiring me and challenging me in more ways than I thought it would. The best thing about it is I may be losing sleep, but I am throughly excited every day to read the class post and chat with my classmates in the Facebook group and share photos of our sketches and progress on assignments. It literally is the best investment I have ever made in my future and in my career. So if you have never taken the course or you have been on the fence - what are you waiting for?? Tell Lilla I sent you. =)

Okay...week one! Bolt fabric! I was thoroughly excited to see that week one was going to be bolt fabric. Number one because I just love creating patterns, number two because I have experience creating for bolt fabric and was lucky enough to have some of my designs licensed through Robert Kaufman Fabrics via Pink Light Design a while back, and number three my part time job is at a bolt fabric company. Yes I get to make designs for bolt fabric for a living - I'm lucky, I know!

Our assignment theme was root veggies and vintage pyrex. So great, right?! I love drawing veggies and kitchen stuff so I was totally psyched! Here are my first sketches for the mini assignment:

I chose to do my sketches with a Prismacolor Premier chisel point marker. I usually just use pencil or micro pens but I wanted to try varying thickness of line and I love how they turned out. Next up is the pyrex dishes. These were so much fun!

Here's a screenshot of my work in progress and my final piece. It took a LOT of editing but I managed to narrow down the motifs. I had TONS from the mini assignment. That is the one thing I have learned that is going to make my work flow so much better is drawing these little mini's so that I have tons of doodles to work with for a print. The more you have the better. It make designing your final piece that much easier. Once I had all my icons drawn I then scanned them in and used image trace in Adobe Illustrator CC. Easy peasy. Half of my work was already done. All that was left to do was layout and color. Color probably took the longest. I wanted a vintage yet modern feel. It took a lot of playing and moving icons around to get the look, feel and flow I wanted. 

So that's week one in a nutshell. So much fun. And I really love the group of artists in this class - SO much talent and kindness and support! And Lilla (our Fairy Art Mother as she likes to call herself) is the BEST. So inspiring and motivating and uplifting. She really makes me excited to come to class every day. Love her. 

Check back soon for the next post - Week 2 is Home Decor!!