I have started on a new project this week, a banner design for a middle school urban garden. The teacher who is the driving force behind the garden approached me at an event at a local winery. I had a booth and she liked my work and asked if I would be willing to donate my time by designing a piece of art to help promote a school’s urban garden. I’m all for kids having a hands on experience, getting outside and being rewarded, literally, with the fruits of their labor, so I agreed. The artwork will be used on a 6 ft. by 3 ft. banner that will hang on the fence of the garden fronting the school and facing a large city park.
I have a lot of work stacked up so I need to keep moving on this and complete it quickly. That being said, the first step of blocking the layout is done as well as the second step of researching reference material on plants and trees in the garden. Happy that went more quickly than normal for me, especially given the garden has a large variety of plants, more than I have seen in other community gardens. Along with an impressive assortment of vegetables and herbs, they also have a mini orchard and grape vines. The client also would like several different types of insects as part of the artwork. While it would be great to include every type of fruit, vegetable and herb, it’s not practical and would make for a confusingly busy composition.
Step three, where I am now in the process, is deciding what subjects to include in the piece and completing the design draft. Since the banner will be large it needs to pop from a distance. With that in mind, I am currently favoring rich, bright colors and larger subjects. Lots of red, orange red, orange, yellow, gold and purple, and many hues of green.
As I am working on the draft and have just added a honey bee, I’m wondering if I need to make the insects larger. Don’t want it to look like a genetics experiment gone wrong, but I don’t want them to get lost in the mix. Not too worried about the planned butterfly, but concerned about the honey bee and ladybug. I’ll let you know what I decide in a few days. I have included a photo of the WIP as of today.
Don’t know if this will be the final layout but I am happy with the direction so far. I am anxious to complete the draft and review with the client so I can get started on the final work. I’m on a roll and don’t want to lose momentum.