Dublin-born illustrator Eoin Ryan recently created a striking set of illustrations for an article in Wallpaper* about Indian weddings. The piece detailed how traditional ostentatious weddings are falling out of favour, with couples preferring smaller, simpler and stylish ceremonies, and Eoin was asked to represent the contrast between the two approaches to matrimonial celebrations.
We caught up with Eoin to find out how he created a striking mix of contrasting colours and texture.
DA: How did you come to work for Wallpaper*?
ER: "I sent them my work after graduating and they liked it and gave me my first big commission a couple of years ago, I've done a few jobs for them since then, this was the most recent."
DA: What was your concept and how did you develop this?
ER: "I started looking through lots of Indian wedding images and I noticed the henna tattoos on the bride's hands. They had quite beautiful patterns so I thought i could use these somehow. [For one illustration (bottom),] that developed into using the hands themselves and I ended up showing a blingy, dolled-up hand with a huge ring contrasted with a simpler, unadorned one and a smaller ring. I used the same idea for the [illustration of] two bride's heads (below) and incorporated some of the henna patterns in the background."
DA: For the illustration above, what did you want to evoke by the contrast of colours and organic textures/textile patterns?
ER: "I used the purple and beige to contrast the lush and simple styles of wedding, purple being the kind of colour that signifies luxury and biege for a simpler feel. The contrasting patterns were also meant to signify a more ornate looking style with the simpler folded fabric."
DA: How did you create your illustrations?
ER: "I sketched out a line drawing then scanned that in. I layered up and cut out textures I made using scanned ink washes and found old paper Then I colorized and shaded them using Photoshop."
DA: Your work has a beautiful mix of pattern and texture. What tips do you have for our readers about how they can use pattern and texture better in their artworks?
ER: "I usually find the more time I spend on textures before I scan them in, the better they look in the end. Photoshop and Illustrator are invaluable tools but I try balance that with doing things by hand as much as possible beforehand."
DA: What are you working on now?
ER: "I'm working on some designs for a new clothing label called Citizen-Ink to be launched in September."