As a beginner level user of Illustrator I had only really developed a few ways of creating illustrations within the program, mainly those taught to me by friends. As I started working on the card design I went about it in the same way as I already knew, and discovered this wasn’t producing the results I wanted.
My starting method was to take the scan of the girl with the pie and using Photoshop to make the colours cleaner (i.e. the black black and the white, white) I selected the shadows and then dragged and dropped the girl into Illustrator. From there I would use Image trace to turn the image into a vector based image, and begin adding colours from there.
However this time I felt like the Image trace had not achieved the look I’d hoped for. The girl had lost some of the character from the original drawing. So I began to think about other ways of approaching creating the same character in Illustrator.
I had previously discovered a website which offered vector graphic tutorials. Looking at posts on the site I discovered a post in which someone suggested taking your drawing and adding it as a layer into Illustrator, dropping the opacity and on a layer on top effectively tracing your drawing using the pen tool. In the process of tracing the drawing using the pen tool one would be creating a vector drawing that could make working on the illustration in the program easier. Here’s a link to the mentioned tutorial:
So that’s what I began to do, here’s an early design using that method:
Unfortunately I hadn’t created the vector drawing with much thought as to how the coloring would work afterwards and discovered that as I hadn’t created the drawing as distinct shapes( i.e. one shape for one section of hair, a shape for an arm etc), when I began coloring certain areas coloured which I didn’t want to.
So I redrew the girl this time making the shapes clear and large enough to overlap, in the hope that based on how I layered them the coloring would work. This version was mainly successful:
You’ll notice from the two images above I also worked on creating a repeating pattern from the pie illustration. Again this required learning how to generate a pattern in Illustrator and I found out how to do so following a post from Adobe’s online magazine ‘Inspire’. See the link to the post below:
At this point I think I need to make decisions on a final version of this card, and decide if I want to generate two versions from it as part of my 3 finished cards. I also am aware I need to do this swiftly to allow myself time to create a third design. I’m also wondering how I will work on what the inside of the cards say and how to get the designs in a printable format…