In the following stage I needed to manipulate my vector images, for this I used Illustrator firstly to generate a layout. Morris’ prints tend to be continuous if not symmetrical and so to capture this effect I simply designed just one half which I could then mirror on the other side. In this design (I do intend to do more) I placed the cow skull in the centre, this was because I saw it as a centre piece and not as something that could be repeated to make patterns like I did with the moths.
The barbed wire in the design was made quite easily using a brush tool before I added the imagery such as antlers in different sizes. This was because I wanted to create a bit of depth perception, in the final prints you can see the moths on the wire and antlers change size with how big/small they are.
After finishing the design, I needed to reduce the amount of colours in it. This was because there were about 15 colours and I intended to create prints that wouldn’t take a week to complete. I’ll post the many colour variations I made at the end, I went for mainly pastel colours in CMYK for my prints. I found it easier to edit the colours within Photoshop because the magic wand tool allows you to select all the sections in an image with the pixel colour you select. This way I could cut out the layers before grouping them and doing colours that way, I had to be careful however that some of the sections I chose wouldn’t be too close together if possible, otherwise the images would lose some of their distinctiveness. Unfortunately due to having to choose 4 colours, it wasn’t possible to avoid this completely however with some extra manipulation it would be possible to do this better. After a lot of organising I managed to get the layers together before selecting them to create a clipping mask on a solid colour, therefore making all the bits I had selected, just one colour.
Please feel free to click the images to see them clearer, I’ve noticed some of the colours seem a bit brighter than I intended them to be but I did each variation of colour with a maroon background similar to Strawberry Thief by William Morris, along with a white background version for each.
My next post will detail my printmaking process and show my final prints!