To create the wreath, I started with composing the cotton vector. I drew a symmetrical cream circle and drew a leaf using the pen tool. I adjusted the leaf to be more symmetrical with the anchors.
Using snapguides I placed the leaf onto the intersection of the circle, but later adjusted it so that it was larger than the cotton bud, so it looked like the cotton was really encapsulated. I duplicated and reflected the leaf vertically and placed it behind the first leaf and added a stroke to the shape so that it was visible, but only just darker than the fill green so it wasn’t harsh. To make the cotton appear fluffy and less flat i made semicircles by removing paths from a circle and gave them a slightly darker stroke in a similar style to the leaves for additional detail. I arranged the additional cream circles behind the leaves and grouped the entire shape after selecting it to complete the cotton plant. I drew a curved line for the stalk and duplicated and arranged the plants into a wreath but found that I would have to edit some of the stalks to prevent awkward gaps. I also resized some of the duplicated plants to give the wreath some variety.
For the background I followed the original book’s artwork and used a similar colour scheme. I used the rectangle tool to create blocks to represent the land and sky. For the red path, I built a trapezium by adjusting the paths of a square and drew two rectangles that crossed at the centre of the trapezium as the fork in the road. I removed one of the paths by accident and found that a triangle created a better perspective effect than a long rectangle. I resized the wreath and adjusted the font colour (white on bright colours for better legibility) once the background was complete and used snapguides to centre it.
Most of the tutorials covered similar ground, primarily how to create complex shapes by combining simple ones, which helped me visualise how to break down images, so I don’t need to draw them. Other tutorials assisted me with my path and anchor tweaking skills as I have had difficulty with adjusting drawings to be less harsh. I do need more practice as the merge options are still confusing and I opted to multi-select my shapes and group them instead of combining them as there were difficulties.
Resources for research and inspiration:
I used the original book cover as inspiration for the colour scheme and the images I made. As the design was for a Facebook banner, I wanted it to be simple whilst still displaying the core themes of the podcast. I chose the paths to represent how despite being sisters the main characters were given very different lives- the destination of each path isn’t visible as the sisters didn’t have that foresight. It does kind of spoil it on the blurb, though.
For my Photoshop debut, I wanted to start with a simple but eye-catching design that would attract my self-appointed target demographic of people under 25. I experimented with the effect that overlapping colours and opacity and it resulted in a blended watercolour effect. For the text I used opposing featured colours to add harmony to the division.
I created a more experimental background for my second design with the use of a textured paper background with a more colourful layer overlapping it. The layer on top has been blended so that the images seem merged. I used a pen graphic and created a silhouette with colour overlay- to emphasise the title I added the bevel and emboss effect.
For my favourite design, I aimed for an image without text that still clearly showed the brief. I created the platform for the centrepiece by collaging paper graphics. The centrepiece began as a radio microphone that I manipulated with layer masking to replace with a pencil head and emphasise that design is being discussed. Finer details involved more layer masking to give the effect that the microphone soundwaves were bursting out of the cover despite the layer being placed behind the collage (the stand isn’t fully visible). The background is red as that is often related to news, with a gradient to make it less harsh.
The tutorials that were suggested/found primarily aided me with layer masking and text effects. My inexperience meant I did not seek particularly experimental techniques as my primary goals were to learn and refine the basics. The Adobe site contains more concise tutorials than what I could find on LinkedIn Learning, which contained more detailed introductions.
This project involved reducing my initials to basic geometric shapes or silhouettes and merging them in different ways. My initials are the same letter, so I used both capital and lowercase to gain some variation between round and sharp edges. In my final transmogrification, I used watercolour as a medium to emphasise the theme of fluidity.
A useful time-saving technique that I will take from this task was cutting out my initials to trial different combinations of positions and letter casing without needing to draw them out.
My addition to the first image is a troll which demonstrates the obstacles that disadvantaged students face. The troll does not contrast the initial image very effectively, which makes the meaning less clear.
In my first mini project, I attempted to tell the brief’s story within the pages. I represented the main character’s frantic search for nothing with rough edges and tears. I split the story into sections and varied cutting/ripping/sticking the pages of my book up until the end, where the reader finds nothing. If I redid this project, I would take it less literally and try to present the obsession so that it is clear what the story is upon first glance.