When designing illustrations for Ashlea over at Bunnycup, I take a theme and draw as many characters as I can in pencil in my sketchbook. I research the theme by looking at google images, Pinterest and going to my local library. Sometimes animations are full of inspiration too! With the vikings I watched a Disney film called 'Tangled' which had loads of cute barbarian-esque characters in it!
I pick my favourite 12 and scan them into my computer. In Photoshop I isolate each design and resize it to 4x4 inches, the same size as the embroidery hoop for Bunnycup's embroiderers.
The enlarged sketch is taken into Illustrator; software that draws in vector lines. Here I trace over my sketch. It can create really crisp lines which don't loose detail if I need to shrink or enlarge parts of my design. The lines can be duplicated and reflected to make symmetrical parts of the image quickly and accurately.
Then I take the vector lines back into Photoshop to convert into a greyscale jpeg file. I do this for each of the 12 images in the set. I email them over to Ashlea and they get digitized for embroidery machine.
At the moment I am working in my sketchbook on a set of seahorses and some cute 1920s flapper girls.