I wanted to use my growing abilities in Adobe Illustrator to design and create a set of stickers. I brainstormed ideas of what I could do and I just kept coming back to the idea of putting random animals in classy old-style hats and have their portraits in frames. The next difficult step was to figure out what animals I wanted to use and what hats to put them in. The frog with the bowler hat was probably the easiest to dream up. The otter was likewise not too difficult, but the fox took some time and i had to really sketch out a lot of animals before deciding upon it. These stickers are meant for those wonderful spaz like people who still enjoy a little class and would think that a frog in a bowler imitating Winston Churchill would be worth paying money to see.
As you can see above, I sketched a wide variety of animals and a lot of different hats. I contemplated using different styles of hats but I decided that such hats like the sombrero, party hat and fez just didn’t seem to fit the style and theme I was going for.
These were my initial drafts. My biggest critiques were that the animals did not fill the frame like old-style portraits do and that the frames seemed far too basic. Those were the two main bits that I worked on. I resized the frames and animals to fill the dead space more effectively and added textures and depth to the frames to look a little more present. Since I was going so far as to mask textures onto the frames for that woodgrain look, I also decided it would be a good idea to accentuate the hats as well since those were the part that really made these animals different. I had to find and make very different textures for the three hats as they were made of very different materials. Making a mimicry of the velvet bowler hat proved most difficult as it turned out best to use a subtle hand on the texturing.
In the end, I am quite pleased with how everything turned out. The animals are easily recognizable and the hats look like they belong. The frames fit the style and all the hats and frames give an early 20 Century feel which was what I was going for. These to me, are a cohesive set that would appeal to one such as I or anyone who has a passion for silly yet sophisticated animals.