Putting pen to paper

At Belle, we make each design unique. We strip it back to basics, get creative with colour, consider font choices and emphasise the best bits to make each piece of artwork pop.

To give you an idea of how we create your design and print material, we’re going to take you through the different stages. We’ll show you what was involved in creating original artwork for our 2019 desktop calendar.


Step one: tracing the image in pencil

Our in-house designer Joe Donohoe traces an image in pencil from a photograph to create a simple line drawing. He uses a lightbox to make sure the image is accurate and scaled properly.


Step two: picking out detail in pen

Then to draw the gaze to certain aspects of the piece, Joe picks out prominent features in fineliner pen. This simplifies the drawing into something easier on the eye.


Step three: the finished illustration

Here’s the finished illustration. Although detailed, the design doesn’t look cluttered or too ‘busy’. It’s an accurate, to-scale representation of the original photo, but stylised to make it more attractive.

The hand-drawn element is important as it makes the design unique – it’s so easy to pull images from the internet and to manipulate and edit them.

But at Belle, we prefer to do things properly and believe that putting care and consideration into the design process leads to a better finished product. We design to be different.


Step four: uploading onto the computer

The finished artwork is uploaded to a Mac to be finished off. Initially, the drawing is traced in an artwork programme called Illustrator to create vectors. Creating vectors means the image can be scaled to whatever size is required without losing any sharpness. It can also be placed on a multitude of backgrounds.

These factors mean the finished print will be high quality and crystal clear, no matter if it’s on a business card or billboard.



The final step: transfer vector artwork into Indesign

This is where it’s further enhanced, coloured and integrated into the wider design of our calendar.

Every page of the calendar is different and showcases unique designs. Digital technology helps us to make our designs amazing, but they’re also full of our own handcrafted creativity.



Good design takes skill, time and a clever eye

If you want your brand’s visuals to stand out, we can help you create some special artwork that represents you perfectly.

Would you like one of our 2019 desk calendars to brighten up your desk?

Drop us a line at [email protected] – we’d love for you to have one. Don’t forget to send us a snap!

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