I’ve been busy doodling again and my current doodling obsession has been back with curves and swirls. I haven’t stopped at just the doodling though, I’ve been making use of my new Adobe Illustrator CS5 skills to make my original doodles into some funky patterns that make saleable artwork. However, the process from a wandering doodle to a vector pattern is not an easy one.
I always work best with pen and paper and rarely doodle in any other way, but transferring those designs to a computer and retaining their detail and textures always has some drawbacks. I scan all my doodles in as bitmap files using my scanner, but this creates a lot of noise and a large file size. I also often use unusual inks, especially bright vibrant gel inks like metallics, glitter gel inks and Zebra Super-Marble Gel Rollerball pens, which give you three different colour inks in each pen. The ink looks great on paper, but some of the detail gets lost in the scanning process. You can buy a pack of 6 Zebra Super-Marble Gel Rollerball pens from Amazon for only £4.69, which I used to create many of the original doodles shown below.
In Photoshop CS5 I do my best to clean up the noise and bring up the contrast so the design is more visible, but to make a pattern that can be blown up and/or reduced in size without losing quality and retaining smooth edges requires converting the image into vectors. To do this I use Illustrator CS5 where I have to painstakingly draw round each of the individuals curves and swirls of a doodle and then colour the shapes. Then I’m able to play around and make my patterns. It probably sounds like a painstaking and time consuming affair and you’d be right, but it is also a labour of love.
For your viewing pleasure below are my original doodles scanned and tidied up in Photoshop together with the vector patterns that I created in Illustrator.
Happy doodle trails!