Posts Tagged "graphic design"

Googoo&Gaga Artist Collection – Watercolor Series + Musings

Excited to tell you guys that super cool apparel brand Googoo&Gaga has invited me along with fellow artist Wiji Lacsamana to come up with designs for their 2016 Artist Collection series. This year they’re focusing on watercolor art. 🙂 I’ve always been a fan of Audrey & AJ Dimarucot’s Googoo&Gaga’s quirky designs (and designer AJ has been a friend since the late 90s) so I was happy to be a part of this collaboration.

Here are the designs I came up with. They come in all sorts of clothing styles too — onesies, tees, lap t-shirts, t-shirt dresses, leggings, and even swimsuits which is pretty cool, right? The pre-order period is over but I believe you can still place orders through this link or by clicking on the image below.

googoo & gaga x cynthia bauzon arre

Googoo&Gaga x Cynthia Arre

I wanted to come up with designs that were fun and quirky without being “cutesy” since these qualities are what sets Googoo & Gaga apart from the other kiddie brands so I thought of drawing animals sporting human clothing and acting like they couldn’t care less. ;P I chose a zebra and giraffe because I read somewhere that these animals, normally found in Africa, actually exist here on our shores — in Calauit to be exact. I thought it would be interesting to set them against tropical foliage to reflect that fact. 😀

I had a great time working on them — and making illustrations for a brand for a change — and would love to have another opportunity like it again. So if anyone out there reading has an idea for a collaboration, please shoot me a message and let’s see what we can do.

***

via GIPHY

To you guys subscribed to this blog (yes, all three of you ;p) I must apologize for the lack of updates and for also being a little impersonal lately. I know I’ve mostly been posting ads for workshops or new products in my store and the occasional product review. Where have all my musings and indirect confessions of inadequacy gone, right?

Well, here goes. I often find myself wondering about what I’m really doing. Shouldn’t I busy myself with making money instead of art? Obviously I can earn more as a designer since that’s what I do professionally but I have stubbornly been focusing more on improving my skills at drawing rather than pursuing what I already know how to do. If there’s something I’ve clocked in over 10,000 of hours on, it’s graphic design. But here I am trying to get into the world of illustration, unknown territory. Perhaps it’s because I almost had it — I was on that route a long time ago. I used to paint everyday. I drew portraits of my idols (River Phoenix, Ralph Macchio, and, okay, the Menudo guys) in charcoal back in high school. The late Jose Joya, a *National Artist*, gave me the honor of being a recipient of his award in 1988. And then I slipped down the rabbit hole of commercial work and all traces of my previous budding illustrator self disappeared.

Around 10 years ago, a friend / fellow artist I greatly admired complimented my portfolio but then asked to see my personal work. My mind went blank. I asked him sheepishly, “what do you mean, ‘personal work’?”  He said, “you know, art you’ve done just for fun.” And so it struck me that I had absolutely NONE to show. Everything was for a client. Even the band stuff. I had fun working on them, yes, but they weren’t for *me*.

BUT. 2014 happened and I’m back on that track or so I’d like to think. I have a long way to go still but whenever I feel like giving up and going back on familiar ground, I scroll down my Instagram, look at the body of *personal work* I’ve amassed, and keep soldering on.

***
p.s. Incidentally, I do almost always post personal musings on Twitter more than any other social network because I know I can write anything and my post will get buried in a few minutess so maybe I’ll see you there? 😀

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“Greetings from Callalily” Illustrations & Album Design

Project: Callalily’s 10th Anniversary Album “Greetings From Callalily” Packaging Design
Tasks: Watercolor portraits, illustrations, art direction and graphic design
Date of publication: October 23, 2015
Client: Soupstar Entertainment

It was my first time to design a fully-illustrated album in 15 years (the last one was for Ely Buendia’s “Wanted Bedspacer” in 2000) so working on this was a treat. We had already agreed on a watercolor look — it was what made them get in touch with me in the first place — and when the guys told me that the title of the album was going to be “Greetings From Callalily,” I immediately thought of those retro “Greetings from Las Vegas” etc postcards. I suggested a rectangular envelope design containing actual postcards featuring portraits of the guys along with letters from them to their fans. We corresponded via many DMs on Instagram and I was so glad that they were all for it! (Side note: how convenient is it that everyone’s on social media now? Back in the day I had to go to midnight gigs to present my concepts. :D). Here’s a peek of the postcards with each band member’s personal note:

A photo posted by Cynthia Bauzon-Arre (@arncyn) on

For the back side of each card, I asked the guys to send me gut-wrenching lines from their respective songs so that I could make some typography art for them. All incorporating the calla lily flower. 😀

A photo posted by Cynthia Bauzon-Arre (@arncyn) on

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Design Process: the new Itchyworms logo

NEW-itchyworms-logo-2015

A few months ago I had the honor of re-designing the Itchyworms‘ logo.

But before anything else, here’s a little backgrounder. I’ve known the guys – Jugs, Jazz, Chino, and Kelvin since 1997 when they were still college students in Ateneo. My good friend, filmmaker Marie Jamora (back then also still a student) took me to their gig in Freedom Bar and so I met the guys. We all became ICQ pals (#titohits), chatting everyday — eventually on the phone too –, and them I started hanging out with them and Marie in almost all of their gigs. I also had the privilege of designing two of their albums — “Little Monsters Under Your Bed” (with Arnold) and “Self-Titled.”

The first Itchyworms logo was based on Jazz’ concept of an “iw!” symbol that looked like a worm. Here are the initial studies and the final version as it appeared in “Self-Titled.”

OLD-itchyworms-logo-2008

As you can see, the 2008 version of the itchyworms logo looked and worked like a badge and later we learned that it was pretty hard to use in merch and posters because of its square shape. So early this year, the band approached me for a redesign. The goal was to freshen the look while retaining the “iw!” concept and make it easier to use on gig posters, business cards, signage, and other promo materials.

NEW-itchyworms-logo-2015-DEV

Pencil studies (above), and the digitized / vectorized versions (below).

NEW-itchyworms-logo-2015-a

They chose the first one (upper left) but they also wanted me to explore making a “3D version” which, I agree, perfectly reflects their vibrant, dynamic music and kwela personalities.

NEW-itchyworms-logo-2015-b

Getting there… I made several versions just to give them more options to choose from. The front-facing logos on the right won so I tweaked and developed that direction further.

NEW-itchyworms-logo-2015-c

I played with lower and upper case letters and shadow effects. In the end the band chose the one at the bottom. Yay, new logo for 2015!

And for throwback fun I’ve included some goofy photos from the old days. 😀

old-itchyworms-pics

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How I make seamless patterns in Photoshop (Tutorial)

making seamless patterns in photoshop

I was in the middle of turning those vintage camera doodles on the left into a seamless digital pattern for my online stores when I thought, hey this is a good time to make another tutorial. I do know how much you (yup, all 3 of you) like reading about my design process. 😉

Step 1: Doodle, scan, clean up in Photoshop (I’m still using a Jurassic CS3 so if you’re using a newer version, you can disregard this entire blog post huhuhu). Some points to remember:

  • save your doodles in grayscale, TIFF format
  • clean it up, erase all pencil marks, close all broken lines
  • once clean, make another layer for your doodles and change the mode from grayscale to bitmap then change it back to grayscale (this will allow you to easily select and remove the white background)

Step 2: Create a new file for your pattern. I usually start with a 1500px x 1500px file. Paste your cleaned-up doodles into that file and arrange them however you like on the page.

Step 3: Add color to your drawings.

making seamless patterns in photoshop

  • make separate layers for the background, outline, and fill color(s) so you can easily make variant colorways in the future
  • once you’re happy with the colors, duplicate all the layers and place one “untouched” set in a folder and turn off the “eye” symbol to make it invisible for now
  • important: leave the background as a separate layer

Step 4: Merge the outline and fill layers of your drawing.

how to make a seamless pattern in photoshop

  • an additional precautionary step I take is to select the entire file and then go to Image > Crop in the dropdown. This way, tiny pixels that could mess up the next step will be eliminated.

Step 5: Select the merged layer and choose Filter > Other > Offset1. Type in a number that’s half of your document size in the pop-up. Since my file is 1500px x 1500px, I typed in 750 for both horizontal and vertical instances. Your drawings will scatter to the edges.

how to make a seamless pattern in photoshop

  • remember to tick “wraparound” in the popup box
  • check to see if the images in the corners will connect with one another without gaps. This is why the “Crop” command I added in Step 4 is important. Sometimes tiny, hardly visible pixels will throw the alignment off.

Step 6: Remember I told you to make a duplicate layer for the drawings? Turn on the “eye” symbol and make it visible. Take the duplicate versions of the drawings and arrange them randomly to fill up the blank spaces. This is now your “Master” file. Save it as a .PSD so you can do edits later.

how to make a seamless pattern

  • I like to flip and scale the duplicate drawings to give the pattern a (in breathy voice) casually-thrown-together look. 😉
  • see how I’ve left the background color as a separate layer? This way I can easily change it to make a variant of the pattern.

Step 7: Time to test your pattern. Select the entire page and go to Edit > Define Pattern. Type a name for your pattern in the pop-up.

Step 8: Make a new document in US Letter or A4 size (it really doesn’t matter). Create a layer, select it and go to Layer > Layer Style > Pattern Overlay. Select the pattern you just made in the Pattern palette that pops up.

making seamless patterns in photoshop

Step 9: Inspect your pattern and watch out for elements that don’t align or are too close to one another. Edit your master file accordingly and repeat steps 6-8.

making a seamless pattern in photoshop

Step 10: Once you’re happy with the pattern, save your square master file as a JPEG. You can now use that to make fabric patterns in Spoonflower or Zazzle and make some extra pocket money.

how to make a seamless pattern in photoshop

I’ve yet to upload it to my stores (since I was *ahem* busy making this tutorial) but I do hope you’ll find this post useful. 🙂

UPDATE: Now available on fabric, wrapping paper, ribbons, and other fun items on Zazzle.

  1. if you’re using a different version of Photoshop, it might be located under a different dropdown[ back]
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I'm Cynthia Bauzon-Arre, a Filipino illustrator, graphic designer, and craft hobbyist. I live in QC with my talented graphic novelist hubby Arnold and our friendly marmalade tabby Abbas. This blog has been chronicling my life, likes, and loves since 2001. [ more ]

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