ILLUS | varoom research

Before working on my digital composition, I did a bit of research and did up a moodboard.

My moodboard consists of the colours I wanted to use for the illustration, as well as some keywords I wanted to convey through the illustration. For the images I found on the right, there were just some images of how coffee made me feel / how I wanted coffee to be like. There are examples of the coffee bag and inhaler which is pretty similar to the things I want to have in my coffee crackhouse illustration.


My first artist reference is Kate Prior, whom using flat colours and simple line in her illustrations. I wanted my illustration to have a similar style to hers as I think being a flat illustration shows the “crazy yet going to be crazy”

However I wanted a crazier colour scheme with bright colours and I felt that the colours she used was too pastel. Hence, I went to look for another artist to reference.


The next artist I referenced from is Lili Des Bellon, whom uses lines in her works as well. I really like the colours that she used, as it’s really striking and I wanted the bright colours to bring out the crazy adrenaline look.

Note: The top left picture is not her work, it’s a graphic style I wanted to adapt for the eyes of my characters (bulging, veiny eyes)

Next up, I drew up a few characters I wanted in my compositions, to draw them in digitally.

I had them in different positions, and also a few elements I wanted to add in the composition.

Following after, I started a rough digital composition of how I wanted the background to be.

draft 1

This was a simple composition, with the bottom half being a coffee cup and the back being the background. However I think it was overall a little flat.

draft 2

I roughly included some elements of what I wanted to put inside.

draft 3

I added in the characters that I’ve illustrated digitally, alongside some coffee crackhouse elements. I also used a bunch of crazy colours to show the adrenaline, except for the characters. however, I felt that the characters should be brightly coloured too to show the craziness.

draft 4

I added the characters in front to being brightly coloured, but with the background more toned down. I also added in outlines for the whole composition. Feedback I got was that the background can also be brightly coloured too, showing the whole “crazy” feel, while leaving the coffee in brown, actual coffee colour.

draft 5

This was one of my final draft compositions, which I brought to consult Lisa with. She recommended me to drop one of the characters behind as it now seems too big and cluttered. I should also put the crazy Starbucks lady bigger, showing focal point. Lastly, at the right, I changed it to a ladder into the coffee pool, instead of the jumping board.

That’s it for my draft compositions and click here for the final!

Till then,

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