Emma McGowan

Writer, Illustrator & Surface Pattern Designer

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Summer Lawn

The Final Collection

I've loved following Elizabeth's process to create my collection. Here it is...I hope you like it.

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The Story

Summer Lawn is a collection of prints that evoke the freedom of long school holidays stretching ahead. Lazing on the lawn, looking up through the trees, dappled with sunlight, pollen floating and bees buzzing. The distant sounds of a picnic being prepared indoors, rugs thrown down, clouds skudding across the bright blue sky. Dandelion clocks, four leaf clovers and daisy chains. Quiet, warm, fresh and happy.

Spot Graphic

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And the prints in full. First, the hero print - "Summer Lawn"

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Secondary print - "Retro Daisy"

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Secondary print - "Double Daisy"

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Blender print - "Retro Leaf"

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Blender print - "Gingham Flowers"

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Blender print - "Sprig and Dot"

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Thanks for getting this far.

Emma

(Below are my original moodboards and inspiration, some drawings and earlier versions of the developing prints).

Moodboards

I've created two moodboards to start off my collection. The first shows images that come to mind when I think of summer lawns in an English garden. I want my collection to evoke the free and relaxed feeling of lazy days spent on the lawn, bees buzzing through lush flower borders.

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My second board is a collection of inspiring prints and fabrics that I want to keep in mind when I start creating my collection. I'd like my hero print to be lush and rich and colourful, with a feeling of swaying upwards like the blades of grass in a lawn. I think one of my secondary prints will have fine lines like a botanical drawing, and I'd like my blender prints to include a check/plaid or a gingham, to evoke picnic blankets. My third blender I think will be a tossed, small scale floral. But perhaps it won't work out like that once I get started!

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So, in summary, I want to create a collection that feels English and summery, and which will have a nostalgic vibe and a faded vintage palette.

Next I'll start some drawing!

Drawing

Keeping my moodboards to hand, I've been drawing daisies, four leaf clovers, blades of grass and other shapes derived from those drawings. I've used a variety of uni pin fine liners and a fat letraset marker pen.

Here are a couple of sheets - sorry, they're upside down!

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I've found I'm most drawn the more abstract, less naturalistic of my drawings, particularly the ones that are chunky and square-ended, so I've started redrawing those in Illustrator with the pen tool and blocking in colour.

I usually work in PhotoShop and only use Illustrator to Image Trace my drawings before exporting them in PhotoShop as Smart Objects, so this is a steep learning curve which is obvious when you look at the curved lines! Here's the very early stages of my hero print. It's not remotely finished but I wanted to post progress. 

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More digitising next week!

Patterns

(One week later!) So, after trying to redraw my motifs in Illustrator (see above), I decided to revert to PhotoShop, as I have a bit more knowledge with it and time is tight for hitting the deadline.

Using PhotoShop means I've opted for a more naturalistic look, which I prefer. My problem seems to be that no matter how often I try to start with the Hero print, I always end up creating a Blender! (Can you get a job just creating blender prints?!) 

Here's my collection so far, minus a Hero. I've blobbed in the colours I plan to use in the Hero as a reminder to myself. I'm loving my right hand Secondary print and my three Blenders. Not really loving the left hand Secondary print but can't put my finger on why exactly. It feels kind of messy and too busy but I'm struggling to fix it. This will have to do for now as I have another deadline pressing. I'll get my Hero, spot graphic and blurb done next, and then submit. Thanks for reading this far!

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