Monday, 7 January 2013

Design Process: Creating a Print Design

Firstly all of my designs always begin by drawing and painting. I mainly use my own photographs and the theme of traditional botanical illustrations to create my art works from. I like to use this traditional approach and technique, as it gives each piece individuality. For me beginning through this artistic approach feels an almost natural way to create an artwork and allows me to determine how I want it to look. It is important to me that my design collection has all been derived from original hand done work.

The media that I mainly use are; pencil, black fine liner pen, mono-print and watercolours. Watercolours are my favourite media to work with; I love the delicacy and fluidity of them, while I like how some elements cannot be controlled and blend together unintentionally, creating surprising effects that cannot be planned or controlled.

Each piece I usually start by roughly sketching out the image that I finalise by painting and drawing over. I will also begin by painting the image straight on to the paper in a more expressive way, with no drawn image to follow, or will draw freehand enabling me to get a more painterly, hand rendered and expressive image.

Once I have finished painting and drawing, I scan the original artworks in to the computer and use CAD to continue to edit and develop them further. I mainly use Photoshop and I firstly tidy up the artwork, clearing unnecessary marks and background imperfections, so I have a clear image to work with. I then begin to combine imagery and design elements together, creating layers and experimenting with different effects. I create colour palettes and change the colours to suit these and add background colour. Then I make the designs in to repeats and patterns ready for printing.

The designs are digitally printed in the uk on to silk, using modern print technology, which allows all the detail from the original artworks to be captured and displayed becoming a way of combining my original artworks and prints with fashion. The dreamy, painterly style works really well with the flowing, delicate qualities of the silk. This printing process is much more ecological than traditional printing techniques, creating less waste and damage to the environment.

I receive the fabric back from the printer's in a long printed length containing all my designs and prints, which I finish by cutting and sewing each piece in to different sized silk scarves.

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