Originally cosmetics and permanent make up was my original idea and final project work, but I changed it because of several reasons do to me not being too comfortable working with people’s faces and because of complications in learning technique. My final project is about a poster series dealing with personal emotional problems and ticks. I got the inspiration for this project after my anxiety, which consisted of crying and nervous breakdowns evolved into more physical problems, like stuttering, hyperventilating, and a nervous tremor. My hand began to shake whenever I got nervous, and it would get me even more anxious because I would get even more scared about not being able to draw because of how terribly my hand would be shaking. My fear would fuel my shakes and the more I would shake, the more scared I would get. My focus in this series was refined into two posters, “Nail Biter” and “Scared”.
My first poster, “Nail Biter” focuses on my habit of nail biting, and connects to both of my parents. My mom is related to the poster because of the irony of her owning nail salons where she’s able to apply beautiful acrylic nails, yet my nails look bitten down significantly. My father is related to the poster due to the hyperdontia that I received from him genetically. When I was younger, I had six extra teeth that needed to be removed, so the imagery of teeth is a very profound one to me. To accomplish this poster, I had taken photos of my fingers and used a layer mask in Photoshop to make them into png files which I put into Illustrator and traced over with the pencil tool. I found images of teeth and a mouth online, which I distorted slightly and added to a layer which I traced over in Illustrator. I created the background by making a pattern with the word “GROSS” which I wrote using the brush tool in Illustrator. After tracing the lines, I added colors and highlights to the images and brought the poster into Photoshop to edit in order to suit printing. I used curves and hue/saturation in order to achieve a color which would be desirable printed.
For my second poster, “Scared”, I focused specifically on the new experience of having nervous tremors. Due to the busyness of the “Nail Biter” poster, I chose to go with a simpler design that would be more refined and focused on text and meaning. The focus of the poster is specifically how my worries about my nervous tremors affecting my drawing abilities would create more fear and more shaking, creating a cycle of being scared. I chose to use a darker background with white linework that I made similar to my “Nail Biter” poster in order to make them more cohesive, along with the use of a border and the same red used in the first poster. I achieved this poster by photographing my hand and editing the photos into png files and bringing them into Illustrator and tracing them in white. I added the text and the brushstrokes and brought the poster into Photoshop in order to edit the colors into a similar effect as the “Nail Biter” poster.
In this final project, I was able to work mainly digitally, but I was more comfortable working digitally on this project than any other due to being able to use the Cintiqs in the Graphics Lab that allowed me to trace the lines of the png files in a way that reminded me more of analog drawing and allowed me to be more comfortable working on the project. Compared to the coloring book project, which was done using the trackpad, I was able to add more stylistic lines to my drawings that would’ve been more difficult to achieve on a trackpad. I found the posters meaningful and intimate to me and I was able to utilize skills in the class in order to execute them, such as using a layer mask on Photoshop, creating a pattern, creating a contact sheet for reference photos, and using layers to create different background effects.