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On the subject of vector


January 14th, 2009.

Illustration in website design

Sometimes photos just don’t cut it – especially stock photos that are also being used on many other sites. Illustrations using traditional (using pen, ink, watercolour, pencil) and vector (a type of computer graphics) methods are starting to fill some of those holes on websites around the world.  One major benefit of illustration is that it can look exactly how you want it to look. The illustration can be of many different styles, according to what look you’re after, and there are many examples around the internet.

3 finished illustrations on the live website
One of the sites that we’ve designed recently, Conference Genie, uses a cartoon style vector illustration to capture their three service in a unique way.  I thought I would share with you the process that I went through to create these graphics.

Pencil sketch of the illustration
Each character starts off with pencil sketches, which helps me and the client to get the same feel for the illustration.  This part of the process should be a time of a lot of discussion and collaboration with the client.

Tracing the sketch in Illustrator
The sketch is then scanned into the computer and opened in Illustrator.  Here I outline the sketch and start building up some shapes.

Filling the illustration with colour
The shapes are then filled with colours, and tweaked according to what is needed.

Finishing the illustration in Photoshop
Finishing is then applied to the illustration in Photoshop and it is incorporated into the website design for a unique look and feel.

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