Step #1 - A pencil sketch
It all starts in the traditional manner: With a pencil and a paper.
We always have a list of ideas for our drawings. Depending on our desires, depending of the season and taste of our customers, a new image is drawn.
Not all drawings always go to the second instance. Sometimes we left them archived until a better time. So, counting the drawings that were already traced and those that are pending, today, we have many folders full of images and projects :o) A truly "Paper Shelter"!
Step #2 - The Digital Inking
I scan the selected picture and the inking process begins. Although from now the process is purely digital, each of the steps is made by hand using a Wacom tablet, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator.
I care as much as I can every little detail. Each stroke is meticulously inked. I give the best I can in order to make a high quality product. Sometimes the inked picture in Photoshop changes a little, sometimes I correct some things or try to improve others, but I always try to capture the grace of the original drawing. I work to achieve clean and organic lines. That is sharp lines, but with grace, fluidity and movement. In this way, the picture looks much better. I analyze the thickness of each line in order to get a clean picture, attractive and easy to paint.
I try to leave nothing to chance. I always try to put my best, but we can ensure that what characterizes us is the deep love and passion we have for what we do. We always offer what we'd like to buy.
Once I'm pleased with the result, I move to the next stage. When we decided to open a Digital Stamps Store we thought that the process would end right here, but then we decided we wanted to offer you something else. And so it was born the third stage.
Step #3 - Coloring
For several years, we have been dedicated to digital design and digital painting. Therefore, I felt something was missing in the products. I also needed to add some color to our pack. I really wanted to paint those cute characters!! They clamored for me to put color over them! So, I do it not just to please me, but because I believe that this addition makes our products more complete and versatile.
The first thing I do is choose the color palette. Generally, while I'm inking the drawing, the colors I want to use are already emerging in my mind. With the hues chosen, always using Photoshop, I fill each part with the solid color.
Now let's have fun! It's time to bring our characters to life, granting them light and shadows, reliefs and textures! In order to do that, I use a selection of custom brushes and various tools that Photoshop gives me. It is a very relaxing, fun and creative process. It is beautiful to see how the picture "pass through the screen".
While I'm painting, sometimes I make changes in the hues, or some minor adjustments in contrasts, saturation, etc.. However, these adjustments are never very drastic. If I use some filters, I try not to overdo with them. I pretend that the final picture looks handcrafted and personal. Just as you do, but using another medium.
Step #4 - The Composition
Now you could say that I finished the product itself, but guess what? There's more! For quite some time I started to add in each package a background/paper matched to the character or image.
It's just another bonus, although the client does not want to use the paper, eventually the customer will have a collection of papers to use in any other occasion. So I think in a pretty background to match the image. At this point I start to play especially with the patterns, textures, shapes, etc. I make more simple and clean papers or more charged depending on the on the complexity or simplicity of the digital stamp.I continued using the same palette, but I always try that the background image does not predominate over the Digi.
Step #5 - Packaging and Publishing
Now it is time to package the product and post it into the Store! In the product folder I place all the images: the outlines, the pre-colored image, the background and the composition. I save the images in two different format types so you can use the format that suits you best.
Then I make the promotional images. Here I want to make a special mention: I deal carefully at this stage too. I pretend that you can appreciate as faithfully as possible what you will get if you decide to buy the product.
When it comes to digital products, we know that the client can not touch or look the original product before purchasing, so it is very important to me that the promotional images are accurate and clear as to the content of the product.
Now only remains to add the product to the Store. Whenever I finish a new product, I also posted it on our Facebook page and I give it to our great design team. Here ends our part.
Now it's time for you to spice up our digital stamp and my turn to marvel watching the amazing and beautiful crafts that make with them.
The Paper Shelter
If you want to see some other works in progress, click here.