Back to School – Part 8 – Feathers

Posted by on Sep 3, 2014 in Illustration, S'Wicked Blog | No Comments

“Feathers” is the last MIID Summer School Intermediate brief theme.

What fun to sort through all kinds of fantastic feather images, and compile them in a Pinterest board.

After collecting my visual inspiration, I went to the drawing board (literally), and sketched first in basic ink-on-paper, and then with some color incorporated. (My husband dubbed those extended crow feathers in the ink-on-paper sketch “birdie jazz hands.”)

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers sketching by Jessica Southwick

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers sketching

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers with color by Jessica Southwick

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers with color

After scanning in some of my sketched elements and tinkering with them in Photoshop, I placed them into Illustrator. It took a while to make the pattern feel as light as I wanted it to be; the palette I was working with was a little on the dark side, and it was easy for things to get thick and overwrought. But, after giving the different elements some room to breathe, I came up with this repeatable swatch:

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers swatch by Jessica Southwick

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers swatch

From there, I filled a larger area with the repeating pattern and mocked it up into wallpaper. I’m really pleased with the sense of rhythm and movement this design creates on a large surface. It’s fun and a little unexpected (both qualities I try to inject in all of my designs).

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers wallpaper mock-up by Jessica Southwick

Intermediate Track, Brief 3, Feathers wallpaper mock-up

Tomorrow, I tackle the third and final Advanced brief. That project will also mark the end of the summer school experience as a whole, which makes me feel an itty bit melancholy.

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