Animal Alphabet

Happy New Year and firstly……

Hello by Rebecca Stoner

Hello (you can get this design as a free desktop wallpaper by subscribing to my Newsletter here)!  I hope you had a lovely Christmas and New Year.  I had a complete break from work and any kind of drawing/painting/creating over the holidays which is quite unusual for me but I just felt I needed it.  However, I have come back to work raring to go and excited for the year ahead!  I enjoyed doing December’s Illustrated Advent so much that I felt I would like another challenge to help kick start the New Year….glutton for punishment I know! It’s called Animal Alphabet.  This one is going to be a bit more slow paced with only one design a week, as it has to be achievable around my client work.  I wanted to do something that challenged me but that I could also add to my portfolio, so I chose Animals and Lettering!  To be honest, the two of these scare me a little as they’re slightly out of my comfort zone but hey ho, it’s not a real challenge unless it challenges you, right?!  So I have some kind of prompt to work to I’ve chosen to use the alphabet, so each week I’ll illustrate or even create a pattern inspired by an animal, working my way through the alphabet.  It should keep me busy!  So this week’s letter is obviously A and I chose Alpaca.  I started off by doing a rough pencil sketch first.

Alpaca Sketch by Rebecca Stoner

I then scanned the sketch in to work on top of in Photoshop.  I mentioned last year that I’ve been using Photoshop a lot more lately.  Illustrator has always been my favourite software for designing but just lately I’ve really got into PS and I’m loving experimenting with all the different brushes and textures.  That’s what I’m going to be using this challenge for – experimenting and trying out different ways of working.  I’m going to try to not be too over-critical (which will be hard for me!) and just see what happens with each piece.  I had thought about linking all the pieces together by colour palette or medium, like I did with the Illustrated Advent, so I had a full set of alphabet illustrations but I think I’m going to just keep this challenge a bit more open and see where it takes me.  So here’s the first of my #animalalphabet2016 illustrations……

A for Alpaca - Animal Alphabet by Rebecca Stoner was actually quite nervous about posting this first one as it felt quite out of my comfort zone and I can’t decide if I’m entirely happy with it but here it is anyway, dare I ask what you think?!  I certainly had fun and it pushed me and that’s the whole point of the challenge.  I’ll be sharing each of my designs here on the blog but as usual I’ll also be sharing them on Instagram where I’m using the hashtag #animalalphabet2016 if you’d like to join in.  I’m also going to be sharing some work in progress images on there for the challenge too.  I’d love some company in the challenge so if you’d like to join in then just use the hashtag #animalalphabet2016 on IG and don’t forget to let me know so we can spur each other along!

I hope you have a lovely start to the New Year and I’ll be back soon.
Rebecca x



  1. says

    I think he is lovely! I love the pattern rug he is wearing and how you have tied this in with the text. I like the texture also as he looks really fluffy. I think you chose a really challenging first animal so well done, I think this is a great idea to do one animal each week…I am still not sure if I will join in because I keep running animals that begin with ‘A’ through my mind and making no decisions as usual!

    • Rebecca says

      Thanks Suzy, I really appreciate your feedback. I actually found the animal the easiest part and the text was the hardest for me. I’m glad you can see how I tied in the text with the patterns in the illustration! Feel free to just drop in and out of the challenge as and when you can/want to….maybe I should have come up with a definite list of animal prompts so you don’t have to make the decision like you did for our Illustrated Advent! I liked how the decision was taken out of my hands, even if some of the prompts were a little difficult 😉

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