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Just Dandy

Hello to everyone!

This has been such a terrific class and I have enjoyed it tremendously. Thanks to Bonnie for all the instruction and inspiration.

When I set out with my camera a couple of weeks ago to comb my neighborhood for inspiration, there was PLENTY to be photographed if I was interested in weeds (or poison oak), but beyond that it was slim pickins. So, I decided to jump right in and explore the wonders of weeds. Now, I have lived right here on this SAME hillside for 13 years and I am an avid lover of nature, but somehow the the exciting world of weeds has never made my radar (imagine that). Surprisingly enough, there was a lot to see and it was all so pretty. The varied sizes and shapes of leaves and all the shades of green...I felt like maybe I had wandered out my front door and landed in Ireland! Why had I never seen this before?

But seriously, build a surface design theme on weeds?

I was able to come up with 3 possibilities: dandelions, thistle and mushrooms.

The thistle were not in bloom, so I nixed those. The mushrooms were enticing and the sketches were fun to do, but ultimatley the dandelion became my weedy little muse.

Moodboard with my initial color palette:

I started off with a few simple sketches and my hand lettered phrase, but I knew that I wanted to build the dandelions directly in AI. So I started using the tools and watching and rewatching the lessons until I came up with some images that I could use.

As a side note, AI works WONDERS on amateur calligraphy!!

When I started to color the images, I knew that my initial color palette was all wrong so I changed my game plan to something that I liked a whole lot better.

And here is where things really got sideways. I spent hours and hours and hours trying to color my images, but I ended up hating everything I did. Why? Because I KNEW what I wanted this project to look like when I was still in the sketching phase. I knew that I wanted simple silhouettes on a colored background. BUT...it is always the "but"...Bonnie taught colorizing, and everyone else who posted projects were colorizing, and color is so GOOD, and everyone else was coloring, and did I mention everyone else was coloring (good grief)...And so I spent way to much time trying to revamp my vision before I remembered that I was the artist, and this was my project, and it was OK to follow my heart and make something that I thought was pretty even if it looked different than what everyone else was doing.

Yes, I am slow like that.

So, here are the motifs, all fractured out and ready to colorize:

And here are my final repeats. (And I still feel like I need to offer more than one because they are so simply colored.)

And finally, a little ombre.

Just because I like it.

Thanks for letting me share!

Well, here I am again. I have a million things to do, all with deadlines of course, but I cannot seems to stop fooling around with these dandelions.

Now that I have the original idea out of my head, I have been able to move on to new ideas. I changed the outline of the shapes to look hand-drawn, added some additional shapes to each bloom and added color.

Ok, that is it for now. No really, I gotta get some actual work done...seriously, could someone please come over here and drag me off this computer!!

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