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Create Three Focal Prints

I've been playing around with all of my patterns to try to generate cooridnates that I like.  I tried some with some templates that created interesting structured repeats, but most felt too geometric.  And working with them kept crashing Illustrator.  So, for the time being, I ended up with a floral pattern for "Grandmother's Garden" and a nice little oval dot to go with "In the Russian Woods."  I still would like to do something with some duck silhouettes and frames, as well as a tapestry stripe, as well.  Maybe a small geometic and a scallop stripe for Grandmother's Garden.  And some all over prints for Baking Day, perhaps heavy on the jar of flowers, or an entirely flora coordinate.  I ran out of time.  ;-)  Those pesky day jobs.

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And the final print.  I do feel like I'm beginning to get the hang of this.

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Repeating Focal Print #2:  In the Russian Woods.  My work flow needs work.  I didn't always use best practices, and sometimes I left my details behind! O.o  But I'm getting a feel for it.

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Coordinating.  I felt like Baking Day needed a plaid.  :-)  I'm wondering if the plaid needs a navy stripe, though...

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Update 3 - Pattern 1, well, in some state of completeness.  I'm not sure I'm thrilled with this, as such, but it was an interesting exercise.  I'm going to leave it alone for a bit and work on a different one, as trying to use the recolor artwork feature just crashed Illustrator.  

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Update 2 - sort of.  I'm uploading a small version of some of my sketches for baking day.  I'm a little behind, with plans to catch up over the weekend.  (Those pesky day jobs...)

I'm struggling a bit with bits of one path that won't recolor the way I want.  Trying to figure out the best way to work with the blob brush tool: I keep getting the stroke and fill different colors, which is frustrating.

There is also a considerable learning curve, both with the program, and with the wacom tablet that I'm new to.  I think this combines with some difficulty in developing my "style"  (Keep the outline?  Lose the outline?  A bigger issue with my critters for the Russian Woods pattern.  I'm still slaving away at it, though.

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And one more page of sketching.  Getting the hang of it now, maybe?

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Update 1:  Sketches.  Some of these are REALLY rough.  Just some photos of the basic pages right now.  And I'll probably need to do a bunch more, especially of the flowers, to have enough to work with after I discard what I don't like.

Grandmother's Garden:

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I haven't gone over all of them in pen, yet.  And I think I need more of some of the individual blossoms.  I might even go out on another photo escapade, if I get time.

Baking Day:

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I'm thinking about adding some berries and flowers to the mix.  Maybe bouquets in the jars, cakes with frosting flowers, etc.  

In the Russian Woods

Here's where I'm really struggling, trying to decide where on the realism-->cartoon spectrum I want to land.  And I've come to the conclusion that I'm better off drawing the folklore motifs directly in illustrator.  I've even made up some specific brushes that make lovely swashes.  But here's some preliminary work.

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The rest of the weekend may be spent playing around in illustrator, adding to the sketch collection to round out the number of motifs, and seeing how well my colors actually work together.

Introduction?  Hmmm.  My name is Holly, I work full time as a veterinarian, am married to a (no-longer-on-active-duty-but-there-is-no-such-thing-as-an-ex-)Marine, and I have two daughters who are both Autistic.  I live in a tiny town on the coast of Lake Michigan, and love to ramble up and down the shore to enjoy the wind, water, and lighthouses.

I'm going to start with my three mood boards and add sketches a little later.  (It's too dark tonight for good photos).

My first is inspired by a recent trip home to visit my parents and let the kids have time with their grandmother.  She's an avid gardener, so I walked around her yard and took a bunch of photos with my phone.  Along the side is a palette of colors I pulled from the photos.

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The next is called "Baking Day."  One of the loves my mother and I share is baking.  And her mother, too, though I don't remember her well - I DO have her Hoosier cabinet.  These are largely photos I pulled from Pinterest for the board, though I've largely been sketching from items in my own collection.  My house is a little bit of a mess and my husband is gone all weekend for a conference, so it's unlikely to get cleaned up enough for photography before the due date for this portion.  I have lots of vintage baking tools and a fair number of vintage cookbooks as well.  This mood board includes two different color palettes that I'm toying with, drawn from some vintage linens.

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The final idea is based on the story of Peter and the Wolf - because I heard the music playing the other day and my little mind sort of ran away with me.  And, I was taking another skillshare class with an instructor who had a gorgeous Ukrainian accent, which fed the mood.  Again, these are NOT my photos, because I don't really have these things in my backyard.  And I'm trying to decide whether or not Peter himself is going to make an appearance or not. I do love Russian folk art - there's so much more to it than matryoshka dolls. This palette was pulled from the pictures and just from my own little brain and the color mixer tool.

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Sketches will follow later this weekend when the light is a bit better.

I actually started and discarded another of other themes - seashells, kids chasing fireflies, bears and berries - and decided to work on these three.  Unfortunately, I tend to have the laser-like focus of a ferret on a cola high.  Hopefully, I can manage not to get distracted for a month?

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