You might have noticed that on our home page each of the Finches have a button linking to a dedicated page on them. We like to keep things fresh and replace these buttons each season. I thought I'd share my creative process of making my summer button.
Over in the Albaquirky studio I'm right in the middle of making lots of lovely new work to exhibit at Premiere Vision, Paris in September and florals are featuring lots in my designs. I can't share any of that work with you at the moment, the apparel industry is hot on exclusivity! But I thought I'd bring some of my floral inspiration to the Summer Finch button brief. I love how you see so many wildflowers in the English countryside at this time in the year, and have used this wildflower theme for this design.
I started with some super quick, fast and loose sketches, to get some compositional ideas down. These are visual shorthand for me; they log more complex ideas I have visualised in my head, so I don't worry about them looking too pretty!
I often need to do a few 'warm-up' sketches at the start of a sketching session. Just like with sporting activities, you need to stretch and loosen up! I'm working with a range of different sized paint pens here, Posca pens are the smaller ones and the big chunky pen is a Montana acrylic marker. I'm loving using my paint pens at the moment. I've worked with the big Montana ones for a while now, but have been adding Poscas to my art materials collection recently, they are great for little details.
I build up a series of hand-drawn motifs and scan them into my computer. Once I have imported the images, I take a little time to clean them up and get them ready to work with. Our talented Mara Penny always designs us a gorgeous colour palette to work to, so I will need to recolour these drawings to fit in with it exactly.
I work in quite a 'mixed-media' way, building up the different layers of the design. Some of the elements like the grass are vectors made in illustrator from my drawings. Many of the motifs are indexed down to limited colours and then mapped to our palette. Some are a mixture of digitally drawn elements and hand drawn like the Queen Anne's Lace flower and the daisies. I quite like the contrast of the cleaner vector elements and the stylised hand drawn, it seems to make the image a little more unexpected and fresh. My 'albaquirky' logo was designed with the idea that it would work well as an outline frame for different patterns. Shhh.... I've snuck in a little section of one of my new designs previewing at Premier Vision into the logo ;-)
Once I think I'm done, I share the design with the other Finches for feedback. We use a Finch Facebook group to keep in touch and share work in progress. It is interesting to share work on line, there is something about uploading it that allows you to see it with fresh eyes. The girls, gave me the thumbs up, but I suddenly realise - I'd forgotten the foxgloves! I make a quick final version and I'm ready to launch my summer finch.