Back in May 2017, I painted some chickens as part of my '100 Days of Blue Project', they were very stylised and used a limited colour palette made up of blue, red, yellow and black. I find painting a great way to relax and quite often a good starting point to develop my ideas for new work but little did I know that these feathered characters would be revived twice over the coming years and show me just how much my illustration skills have grown in that time.
My original painting.
I decided to develop this particular piece further and went on to redraw each chicken using a only black pen, then I scanned those drawings into my computer and went on to create the pattern digitally.
You can see that I kept many of the original features and continued to work with a limited colour palette. However, this particular pattern didn't go any further than my computer screen. I just didn't like it that much.
Later on that year in November, my lovely Mum needed a new kitchen blind. She had a picked out a kitchen themed pattern that I had already designed but wanted to make some changes to the colour scheme, remove some of the motifs and we thought it would be fun to add in a couple of chickens!
I really loved how the new pattern came out and how well the chickens fitted in so naturally, I even had some tea towels made to match!
And that was it...or so I thought.
Now here we are in 2020, nearly 3 years later, and in January I began work on what I thought would be a farmyard themed pattern. I drew cows, sheep, a lovely pig and yes, you guessed it...more chickens!
As much as I liked these cute brown hens, they just weren't working as part of a larger pattern. Then I remembered the first design and wondered if I could incorporate some of the original elements.
I think you can see that both of these chickens were done by me, it's still my 'style' just 3 years apart.
I knew at this point I was close to being where I wanted the new pattern to be but it was missing something. I decided to combine the slightly more realistic elements of the brown hens with the character and colour scheme of the pattern above and.....
Here is a sneak peek of my newest pattern! I really love all the details, the personalities of the chickens and the beautiful blue background! I also created a slightly different colourway...
Which one is your favourite?
I really hope you have enjoyed seeing the evolution of this pattern, as they say, good things take time!