Great Spotted Woodpecker

Below you can really tell what I was saying in a previous post about the second drawing being better than the first! Even though there is not much of a change in what I was drawing, the shapes and details are much improved in the second drawing, and I think this is because in the first, I get the basic shapes and then in the second, I can focus on looking more at the details, making the drawing overall better. Also, in the first drawing he’s floating! Adding the wood in makes it more realistic.


I think the bird designs are some of the best in the collection, as I’ve managed to still achieve detail using mostly big shapes, and using the laser cutter to my advantage to add lines of detail where the wings overlap, but are the same colour. I also think the bright background colour is important on the cards that have a lot of brown in the design, to lift it and to help to work with the rest of the collection.




Creating the dandelion design was a similar process to that of the oak and horse chestnut designs, where I drew the features of the design multiple times, choosing the best drawings and photocopying them to play around with composition.

Drawings in sketchbook

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It didn’t take as many tries with composition to get it right this time, I think because the shapes of the drawings naturally gave themselves an arrangement. I am very happy with this design, in fact it is one of my favourites! I think this is because the shapes are so simple yet it is obvious what they are, and I’ve managed to make an annoying weed pretty. I’m also impressed with myself in how I’ve managed to draw them creating a 3D spherical look, especially the seed-head, as it was something that I thought I wasn’t very good at. Also, the fine liner adds such a small but important detail, and I think it really finishes the design off.



For the plant and flower designs, the process of composition is slightly different. I drew lots of leaves and acorns, and chose my favourite/the best looking drawings and photocopied them so I could play around with composition. I took photos of each composition I tried (in the slideshow below) so I could easily compare and choose the best one.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I think that the composition I chose in the end works well as it is balanced with the different shaped leaves staying true to what it would be like naturally. I also like the patterns I put in the acorns but I decided for the final design to not use as much, so it had a similar level of fine liner detail to the other designs.

I like that I did two colours of leaf in the design, as the orange stands out from the background, and the yellow of the acorn too. I am really happy with the fine liner detail on the acorn too, as it gives a roundness to the cap, and is slightly representative of the texture of one.


Wood Mouse

Below is the original drawing for my Wood Mouse design, as well as an example of how I separated the colours in preparation for laser cutting. I did this with all my designs, with each colour being cut on different papers – a square of which I put next to each section in my sketchbook. It is quite strange but also interesting to see each design taken apart, especially the animals!

I like this design, but I think it could perhaps be improved by using a more interesting paper for the mouse’s body, as it’s quite light and takes up quite a big part of the design, so a more textured or slightly darker paper would have maybe been more appropriate. I chose the yellow background to brighten the design up a bit, as so much of it is brown; and that is also why I put the green moss in, so that the design didn’t become dull and muddy. I think the pattern inside the envelope could be seen as lots of mice tails, so it fits in quite nicely with the card.




The drawing below is the one that I chose to use for my Chaffinch card design. I really liked this drawing, as he has an interesting look about it. I have found that I have to draw something a few times to get the best out of myself, and often it’s the second drawing that is the best, as is the case with this one. I am actually quite proud of this drawing, and I think I managed to simplify it quite well to work on the laser cutter, as the original drawing has so many small details. I decided to draw the eyes in fine liner at the end (as with all the animal designs), as well as the claws.


I am pleased with this design, as it is one of the first I created, and I think it is highly successful considering all the small details. The contrast of the colours works really well, and the whole card is quite bright and exciting. I am glad that I did quite minimal details with the fine liner, as I think any more would have made it too busy and would have distracted from the laser cutting.



This design is the first one that I created, at first through paper cutting by hand, and in a few colours before landing on a more natural blue. I came to this decision because it became obvious through tutorials that creating the other designs in completely unnatural colours may be quite difficult.


At first, the stalk of the flower was going to be drawn with fine liner, as you can see above, but I wasn’t happy with this as all my attempts looked quite untidy and after creating the other designs it didn’t quite fit in. So I laser cut a stalk from the fine liner drawings I had done on photocopies of the design and added it to the real one, and I was much happier with this, as it fitted in with the rest of the collection. I think this design is one of the simplest but because of this it is one of the best. I was also thinking of having the Latin name on the design but decided against it and ended up with it being on the back.


Updated Theme Board

I decided to update my theme board because the original board didn’t represent my theme accurately as it was very dark and dingy, and since I changed my colours it has become much brighter and fresher, so I needed my theme board to represent this.

new theme

This board is much more in line with my theme, especially since it includes artists work that inspires me and my work, and the images I have used are much brighter and more colourful. I think my original board was too literal in the sense that it was creating a landscape scene with lots of animals that were quite small and difficult to see, whereas this board is much clearer with less images that convey the theme much better.