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Last summer my son ‘planted’ a little toy pinwheel in our garden.  I loved the playful movement, color and little bit of magic that it added to the flowerbed.

I created this sketch one day while he and I were coloring. My desk drawer is full of little drawings like this one — waiting for their moment.


Now that winter is here I felt I could use a dose of that color and magic and started exploring an illustration.

I am always so curious to know how other artists and designers create their artwork so I thought I’d share a few of the steps in my own process from idea sketch to final art print.

First, the thumbnail sketches — playing with ideas for a series, dandelion, feather, magic wand, etc (what do you think?)  And trying out a few variations of the pinwheel shape. I decided to stick with 4 petals — I liked the simplicity and balance best.


Then I created a more detailed sketch, shown above on the right and used this as a guide for my line art.

After that I used watercolors to paint the pinwheel petals and background texture.


Finally, I scanned in the watercolor and line art elements and put it all together in Photoshop for this final product.


Viola! A little dose of summer magic on a cold December day.

Available as a nursery art print soon!