Since I wasn’t happy with how my illustrations were looking I decided to step back and research more into what it is that I need to change in them. After some discussion with my tutors and feed back received during the mid-project crit I was suggested to look into experimenting with the line thickness and colour schemes in use within my illustrations.
I knew that I wanted my illustrations to have a bit more of a skateboarding graphics look and feel to them as I think it would be appropriate for my target audience. The reason for this is because skateboarding graphics from around the 80s and 90s many times tend to be based on ‘darker’ themed illustrations with a combination of bright colours like mine. This would help get rid out that colouring book finish that they have at the moment and make the illustrations a bit edgier. This I think will help keep inline that it’s branding for a craft beer which is mainly a male audience and also that they are not soft drink labels.
As seen on the skateboarding graphics from the 80s and 90s that I found on google, they tend to go for thicker strokes with a varied width. This varied width of the stroke is not something that is easy to achieve looking so naturally on illustrator. The stroke variables allow for a similar finish bit its not quite the same.Another thing is that most the shapes have strokes which is something I got rid of in my illustrations but the strokes on the shapes help them pop out and not feel as flat. These illustrations also use some ‘etching’ lines, these help give some detail and break up the strokes.
Using this new found insight I went back to my illustrations and experimented with different finishes. Playing with the stroke width and style as well as with or with out the etching detail on the forehead. I also added a bit of shadow to one of the versions and it ended up giving it a nice depth effect to it without the shadow being overly realistic. I knew I had to find a middle ground between my illustations and the skateboarding graphics as I didn’t want to add to much detail in terms of lighting and shadow onto my illustrations other than the pattern work.
After completing these versions I began to like the look of owl with the half shadow, and reverting back to the cleaner strokes to keep the detail of the patterns. I finally had a style I was happy with as well as the darker selection of colours that work well together that I was able to select thanks to Adobe Kuler. Using this same style I would now need to apply it to my other illustrations.