MIID Summer School Continues…

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post so I thought I’d update you on what I’ve been up to…

I’ve been busy working away on some brand new collections and I’m pleased to announce that two of them are now available from my shop!

Floral Burst is a range of greeting cards, featuring beautiful hand drawn text and flowers in a bold and vibrant colour palette. View the full collection here

CWD Floral Burst
Bold and colourful, the new Floral Burst collection is sure to catch your eye!

Celebrations is a collection designed to do just that…celebrate!! Featuring hand drawn lettering and illustrations, these cards are bursting with fun and vibrant colours, perfect for celebrating all sorts of exciting occasions! You can view the full collection here…

CWD Celebrations
This fun and vibrant range is designed to celebrate all the exciting things in life!

I’ve also been designing more bespoke prints for wedding gifts, new baby arrivals and new homes, which seem to be increasing in popularity! Don’t forget to get in touch if there’s anything I can design for you. You can contact me in the studio here.

The last two weeks has also seen the release of the second MIID Summer School brief which has really pushed me beyond my comfort zone! When I saw that the two new themes were animal and tribal, I’ll be honest, I felt quite a bit of dread, fear and discomfort. These aren’t trends that I’m usually drawn to or that I ever buy into, I don’t really own anything with animal or tribal prints on so this was going to be quite a challenge.

After putting it off for a few days, wondering where to start, which looks, if any, I actually liked and how I can get “me” and my style into these designs, I decided to take the plunge and make a start. And that took me to Pinterest. I created a mood board of all the things I found interesting and was instantly drawn to. I discovered that most of the images I’d pinned had lots of shapes and mark making in bright colours and I realised that not all animal print means tacky leopard prints! They could both actually be quite fun!

I put pen to paper and began to make marks, lines, dots and form shapes that I associated with tribal and animal prints. Drawing a series of smaller icons in this way helped me to break the themes down and make them feel less intimidating. I scanned all my doodles and stared at them on my screen for quite a while, wondering what to do next!

My intial Tribal icons
Some of my initial Tribal icons and mark making

I eventually started to play around with them in Illustrator and added colours, layering as I went and the end results for both briefs really surprised me. I was very unsure of what I’d created but was very quickly reassured by the wonderful members of the course Facebook group that what I’d designed wasn’t as bad as I thought it was, and in fact that they were actually really nice!

So, after much deliberation and continual faffing about, here are my tribal and animal print submissions, along with a few product mock ups for the intermediate and advanced summer school briefs. I got a bit carried away with product mock ups but it really helps me to visualise how my designs could be used. I also discovered that colour is very important as it can change the feel of the design and therefore how it could be used. The softer grey and coral colourway is well suited to textiles whilst the bright, colourful version of worsk well on stationery products.

Textile product mock ups using my grey and coral tribal patterns.
My grey and coral tribal patterns are well suited to home textiles and fashion accessories…
A more vibrant, colourful palette suits stationery products well.
…whilst a more vibrant, colourful palette is more suited to stationery products.
My collage animal print design, mocked up onto a canvas bag
My animal print collage design, inspired by a variety of animals and mocked up onto a canvas bag.

It’s been a real challenge but I’ve learnt to sit back, make a cuppa, take a deep breath and tackle things in small chunks, and not necessarily worry or think about the end result. Just go with the flow and make a start, after all,

Image courtesy of Make It In Design to inspire us :)
Image courtesy of the amazing team at Make It In Design to help inspire us 🙂

So the next time you’re faced with a new challenge, don’t be frightened of it. Embrace it and just go with the flow…you never know what you might achieve!

With both designs finished and submitted for the second summer school briefs and all my other worked wrapped up for the week, the August Bank Holiday weekend is almost here! I’m looking forward to a weekend off and a mini break down to the English Riviera, aka Torquay. Am looking forward to great company, lovely walks on the beach with our Springer Spaniel, Bertie, fish and chips by the sea, ice creams and generally lots of good, happy times. Fingers are firmly crossed for some nice weather!

So whatever you’ve got planned, I hope you have a great Bank Holiday weekend everyone!

Have a fab weekend!
Have a fab weekend!