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Reviewing "FLOWERS for VASES"

I created an illustration for a self-authored article for SCAD Radio reviewing Hayley Williams 2021 album, "FLOWERS for VASES / descansos." I worked closely with the content director at SCAD Radio to create the final illustration.

Holbein acrylagouache, ink, and collage on illustration board with digital additions made in Procreate.



Since I was both authoring the review and illustrating it, I knew that more in-depth analysis would be needed. I spent a significant amount of time analyzing, researching, and understanding the album's content before proceeding with the thumbnailing portion of the project.


I thumbnailed in a notan style which I have found helps me loosen up my thumbnails to communicate the ideas in my head. This particular project had a significant number of successful thumbnails that I may come back to in the future. After discussion with the content director, we chose #15 for the final illustration.


I knew that this project was going to be looser than some of my other work. Just to get the value structure down, I did three value comps to see what was communicating the somber mood of the album. After speaking with the content director, my gut instinct was correct: value comp #1 was the most successful.

Since I already knew that I would be pulling from the color scheme of the album, the next part of the process was experimenting in my sketchbook. I took real rose petals and leaves and collaged them in along with layers of acrylagouache washes on top. It was a lot of mod podge, PVA glue, and drying with a hair dryer.


The experimentation process helped me learn what worked and what didn't for the final illustration. I knew that whatever I did traditionally would be fixed digitally in the final, so if I had some imperfections, it would be okay.

I took notes as soon as I was done with the experimentation process so I could go back if I lost my way somewhere in the middle of the final execution; this was also so I could go back later and pull from some of these techniques if I liked the end result.


For the final illustration, I followed a similar procedure to the earlier sketchbook experimentation. I adjusted minor parts of the final piece that I found were not working in the "first go."


final illustration

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