Sunday 11 November 2012

Chinese Lions

I have long had a strong personal love for Chinese lions (aka Foo dogs). Stone statue lions stood guard at the Chinese restaurant my parents owned and were the mascot our establishment used on all our branded tableware and printed material. My sister and I loved them. So it's no surprise that I still like to include my interpretations of Chinese Guardian lions whenever I can. The ink drawing I am holding above for example was drawn for my own branded clothing range - a grey hooded top:-

I used my now usual process of hand inking the main lines of the artwork, then scanning the drawing into my laptop whereby I convert the lines to vectors using live trace. From there is was a simple matter of playing around with the two lions. As you can see, I the front design is reproduced pretty much identical to my original drawing, but the back design has the two lions swapped around and their tail ends merged. I don't know why I chose this path but it just felt like the right thing to do.

Of course it wasn't all straight forward. I spent a long time agonising over whether to fill in the lions with various colour options. Like the example here:

Although nice and colourful (something I am always happy to push) it just didn't have that wow factor I wanted. When I stripped away the fill colours, I was left with the original line art and in all honesty, this was still more powerful on its own.

I still couldn't resist having a play with altering the colours of these actual lines however...

The example above is okay I guess. I could live with the inverted image but since our budget could only  extend to one colourway, we decided (my partners and I who run the Meerkatsu store) to opt for navy ink printed onto heather grey. It's a very popular colourway for all brands.

Still, if we had time and if there was enough demand, a white hoodie I think would make for a lovely complement to the grey...

Oh and for the inside washing instructions, I couldn't resist the opportunity to knock up a mini drawing just for this. It's a baby cub lion, ha!

I titled this hoodie design "Heavenly Lions" and it is available NOW from my store. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Love the designs,
    I'm researching, Chinese, Buddha lions for a possible tattoo project

    shouldn't the female Chinese lion have her mouth shut?