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inky Valentine

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I'm playing a bit of catch up but I'm excited to start this project!

Milestone 1: Brainstorm

I spent some time today brainstorming on the general theme that ties it all in. My husband and I are musicians, so my current idea is to tie in music/music culture. Perhaps a great line from one of our favorite love songs? I'll be spending some time in my sketchbook tonight and tomorrow to bang some of these ideas out! Also started a Pinterest board to gather some inspiration. 

Milestone 2: Sketch

Sketching today brought me a lot closer to my final product!

I like the schmaltzy, “hearts everywhere!” Valentines imagery- it’s so unlike my everyday personality that it’s a fun seasonal indulgence. My husband (Ryan) and I are in a band and we're inspired by a lot of 60s & 70s garage rock, and I wanted to incorporate that into this since it's such a part of our romantic history. Music is our biggest shared passion. I decided to use the Ronettes/Ramones song "Baby I Love You" as the emphasis of my card. We danced to this song at our wedding ;) With that in mind, I started doodling other images that tied into garage-rock/being a musician.

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After a while of this, I started to feel overwhelmed by the imagery. I liked a lot of my sketches but they didn't seem to come together cohesively enough. "What do I want this card to say???"

I'm a storyteller at heart, so I set to capturing a single moment. Over the years that we've been together, one of our favorite down-time activities is to pop open some cheap beer and just listen to records together. Simple, sweet, and meaningful for us!

I ended up going directly into Photoshop and laying down some basic shapes, and I was pleased with the results! I like that these bigger shapes give me the possibility of getting more detailed and illustrator-y without cramming too much in there. Lots of room to play with textures… but maybe I’m getting too simplistic here? Let me know what you guys think!

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Note for later: digging the idea of a touch of blue in the midst of reds and pinks. Keep that on the backburner. Perhaps add a little denim sleeve to that hand? 

Milestone 3: Inky Marks

Tools used: speedball pen (extra fine nib- I need to get some wider nibs!), small/medium brushes, ink, block-printing ink, brayer

I only had a few intentional things to ink (lettering, lines for the record) so the rest was letting loose and having fun! I like to keep a tidy space so it was an exercise in being messy, getting my hands dirty and just enjoying the expirementation process. 

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Now to bring it all together!

MILESTONE 4: In progress

Due to some unexpected family illness, I haven't yet completed my Valentine. But I thought I'd share what I have so far, for the sake of meeting milestones!

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Still lots of work to be done, but any comments/feedback are welcome. 

UPDATED: Added my (current) final version! 

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