Wuthering Heights- creative process

As promised, here is a post about working on my Wuthering Heights illustration for the Doedemee fighting illiteracy project (go have a look, it’s a lovely project with loads of great stuff- I can’t wait to see some more of the book posters!)

With every big piece of work I do, If I have time, I like to sleep on it a bit, just to let my brain mull things over. Then I get to work researching! For this illustration I wanted to get back into the book (which I hadn’t read for years) and try to understand what it was about the book that people loved. So I re-read a good chunk of it, read some essays on the characters and asked a friend of mine who is very into books to tell me what it was about this one that made it one of her favourites. She gave me some great ideas!

After researching I usually start scribbling ideas down and trying things out- all very scruffy and untidy! Here’s some of the thumbnails.

sketches

Lots of scribbling later, I started working a bit larger to get a rough sketch together.

wuthering heights sketch

I scanned the rough sketch in and started drawing it in Illustrator- tidying up the lines as I went. I like to do linework in Illustrator because I can’t resist fiddling about with it for ever and ever! Here it is with just the lines. As you can see, the window changed a bit- I did some more research into the kind of windows that were common at the time! Wraith-Cathy also got more of a body. At first I thought she should just vaguely appear out of the mist but it didn’t quite work!

white outlines of wuthering heights illustration

Colouring it up and adding texture in Photoshop (mmmm many layers!)

Illustration showing photoshop layers

Here’s a close up to see some of the textures.

Illustration of Cathy

There was a lot of trial and error working on this illustration, which was sometimes frustrating but I learnt a lot too- so it was all good! Plus- tea and good music to listen to while working always help!

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