Illustrative style anniversary wreath

Illustrative style anniversary wreath - student project

My parents are celebrating their 42nd anniversary today (New Year's Eve) and instead of buying them a card I used what I learned in this class to paint them an original card. Since it's a winter occasion, I researched winter wreaths on Pinterest and found my inspiration image: olive holiday wreath. I love the cool, grayish leaves, simple white flowers, and purple blobbies. 

I started by getting familiar with the shapes in the wreath, sketching them out individually:

Illustrative style anniversary wreath - image 1 - student project

Once I had a hang of the basic floral shapes, I sketched my circle and placement of the different elements, and practiced painting the leaf shapes:

Illustrative style anniversary wreath - image 2 - student project

I loved painting the leaves! Going around and around had a nice rhythm to it, and sketching in the placement of the leaves first helped me feel more comfortable with the idea of just painting leaves directly around my circle on the final project. I really liked the different values of the greens, so I kept that idea going in the final card.

I used a filbert brush, and it was great for painting this leaf shape.

After the painted sketch, I made my final version:

Illustrative style anniversary wreath - image 3 - student project

Painting these wreaths is so fun and addicting. I found the masking fluid step to be my biggest challenge, both in making the edges smooth (I didn't) and deciding where to place the masked areas. I'm pretty happy with the placement, but next time I'd work on adding more masked shapes to the dense middle ring of the wreath, rather than so much around the edges. I'd also use cooler greens to be more consistent with the cooler, winter vibe.

Can't wait to paint more wreaths! 

Amy Lamp
Designer, maker, pet enthusiast