Zoe Allen

Self-taught illustrator/designer/hand-letterer

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Snowdrops (and Forestry)

I wanted to create something a bit more complex than my first 'Forestry' experiment and I'm pretty happy with the result - I'm not sure it's perfect but it's pretty ok! Spring is blooming in London so I decided to create a pattern from the beautiful snowdrops growing in my grandparents' front garden. I sampled my colour palette from the photo that I took below (the variety of greens are beautiful!) and drew the snowdrop shapes for my vectors.

With such spindly stems it was difficult finding a way for the different components to fit together - I got fairly obsessed with trying to hide the bottom of the stem, which consquently looking at other patterns was probably unnecessary, but never mind! I like the way that the background colour acts as an outline to the flowers, creating an almost woodblocked printing effect.

I started off using a light mint background colour, which looks quite fresh and pretty, but after experimenting with the darker hue I think this is the variation I prefer - the white of the snowdrops really pop! If I had more time I think I would experiment with an underlying secondary pattern, echoing the long leaves of the snowdrops to give an organic stripe effect - a project for later!

Please let me know your thoughts!! :)

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Really enjoying this Skillshare class! I've always had a thing for trees so I'm going with that, starting with a simpler pattern design and hopefully I'll do something a bit more complicated once I've handled the basics. I always end up taking heaps of tree pictures whenever I travel so I have plenty of resource material to draw upon.

They're all very different moods and colour schemes, which I like, and it gives me plenty of colours to experiment with as my design progresses. I want to start with something very stylised so I'm not straying away from bright, cartoony colours. 

I started off with heaps of sketches, experimenting with different styles and levels of detail. I really like the forest and animal ones but I thought that might be a bit too complicated to start out with so I've decided to go for the blobby trees...

So, using the picture as a reference (top right) I used to blob brush to create my simple shapes - I really liked the painterly effect! Then I started experimenting with colours and arranging them into agreeable patterns. I found that flipping around some of the tree motifs as I was placing them filled the space better and made the pattern a bit more interesting than just the same six trees repeated over and over. I couldn't really decide on a background colour - the light green offsets the boldness of the trees' foliage but I'm not sure whether it's too much green! Do you have a favourite? Or is there another background colour you would like to see?

Overall though I'm quite pleased with the simplicity of the pattern - a good start to go onto something more complicated...check back for developments! :)

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