Technical challenges

creating the blog was challenging as it was something i had never done before. after setting up the webpage i had an image of what i wanted the layout to look like. after changing the colours, fonts and cover photo i finally had the blog i had pictured. however this did take quite a while.

Technically I didn’t have too much to do as none of my chosen illustrators worked on photoshop as they predominately used pencils, watercolour and flowers to create their illustrations. I mainly used photoshop to clean up my images and to experiment with techniques.

For my final illustration i found it difficult to fit the face and hair onto the template to make it look natural. this took quite a lot of time and i had to chop and change a few things as i went along.




Design Challenges

My favourite illustrators style to draw was Kelly Smith, i loved working with pencil as it was my favourite media to use in art, I enjoy shading to add light and dark tones, the slight hints of watercolour added a pop of colour which contrasted nicely to the grey tones of the pencil. I didnt really like using watercolour as i found it a difficult media to use. I found that it was difficult to create that light fluid colour that you get when using watercolour.

it was also very difficult adding shading to images as the paper sometimes wrinkled and ripped, a major challenge i encountered was that the watercolors dried very quickly meaning i had to work fast. It took me a lot of practice to get this right.


Final Illustration incorporating my chosen illustrator styles.

For my final illustration I tried to incorporate all three chosen illustrator styles firstly i created my fashion template by adding a face and hair to the template, the life-like design of the hair and face gives the feel of one of Kelly Smiths illustrations. I then printed this out and added pantone the skin tone hair and face of the illustration.

Lastly to incorporate an element of Grace Ciao I  added real rose petals to the bottom of the design. This gave a pop of colour as well as giving the image the 3d effect that all of Grace’ illustrations have.

All in all i was pleased with the outcome as it took a lot of time thinking of a way in which i was going to recreate an illustration using all three techniques.


Sara O’Neill

I found that Sara O’Neill used very similar techniques to Kelly Smith therefor to switch things up i took a section from one of Sara O’Neill’s illustrations in which she used pencil and added my own take on it by using Acrylic paints. The Acrylic give the eyes strong definition as well as a nice sheen. Firstly i drew out the eye just like Sara using pencil. i then filled the outlines with black and brown Acrylics before adding finishing touches of white Acrylic to add light in the public and the lash line.


Experimenting Kelly Smith Style

Kelly Smith is known for using pencil and water colour to create portrait like fashion illustrations, in my experiments i used the same media as Kelly for one of my images as well as using a mixture of pencil, chalks and Photoshop to give different effects of her designs.

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For the below image i firstly used pencil to create the illustration, i then used different pencils to shade and contour different areas within the illustration, finally just like Kelly i added finishing touches of a light pink watercolor to add blush to the cheeks and roses. these pops of colour really brought the image to life.


Image result for kelly smith



For the below image again i used pencil to outline the drawing, after shading i decided to experiment with a different media, i chose chalks as i felt they give a light texture not far off watercolor, i didn’t want it to overpower the image but to add to it enhancing it lightly,


Image result for kelly smith FASHION


The below image was outside any techniques that Kelly uses for this image i hand drew the outline and shaded the figure. For the roses however i inserted the image into Photoshop i filled the rose with a peachy tone and added the watercolor filter, lastly i mirrored the image to give the twin effect that Kelly uses.



Grace Ciao

Grace Ciao is an infamous fashion illustrator who is globally known for her unique media. With a background in Business Marketing, Grace has combined her creative side with her business sense to help numerous fashion merchandising and marketing teams bring their visions to life. Ciao has worked with many famous fashion houses such as Chanel,  Christian Dior, Fendi, Ralph Lauren, Elie Saab, Kate Spade, Estee-Lauder and many more.

her drawings have been described as “Delicate and luxurious fashion illustrations using flowers and paint.” Ciao finds inspiration for her illustrations from nature, Ciao creates unique and totally wearable fashions by pressing real petals onto model illustrations, their delicacy and exquisiteness mimicking those of a delicate fabric.

Image result for grace ciao

Image result for grace ciao

Sara O’Neill

Sara O’Neill is a fashion stylist and illustrator from Northern Ireland, after graduating from the University of Ulster with a BA Hons in fashion and textiles she has went on to become Northern Ireland’s leading stylist with an array of  ad campaigns, magazine editorials and catwalk shows under her belt.

Sara has been obsessed with drawing from a young age and with inspiration taken from her role in the fashion industry she started producing illustrations, her success escalated in this skill also as she quickly had her work published in magazines and ad campaigns.

Sara works predominately with pencil, exploring tonally between light and dark shades.  Soft water colour’s are sometimes added to bring her illustrations to life. Sara’ success as both a stylist and illustrator has made her a very influential woman to anyone aspiring to work in the fashion industry in Northern Ireland; which explains why her two solo exhibitions were sell-outs. Sara is now represented by Lemonade illustrations London.

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Copyright Sara O’Neill 10/1/17


Kelly Smith

Kelly Smith is an Australian Illustrator, Who’s work is mainly published in the fashion and beauty industry. Kelly is creator and owner of  the internationally know blog ‘Birdy & Me’. Kelly’ is followed on Instagram by over 95k users. 

Kelly takes her inspiration from film, fashion and fairy tale’s, in her work smith mainly uses pencil to explore texture she finishes her design with ink and enhances using digital elements. 

She has worked with a number of luxury brands and high profile clients including: Valentino, Armani, Maybelline New York, Jenny Packham, H&M, L’Oréal, VOGUE, Clarins, Samantha Wills, and NET-A-PORTER.

Her work has been published in the likes of VOGUE, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, In Style, NET-A-PORTER magazine, TASCHEN’s ‘Illustration Now! and FASHION’ 

Kelly’s most recent accomplishment was securing her own book series titled ‘Sticker Fashionista.’


Image result for kelly smith