Assignment 2

Seasonal Food Displays


Ohm Mar Wins background:

She uses mixed media and starts with watercolour, pen and photoshop and works as a surface designer.  She has a lot of skillshare videos demonstrating her approach to design and only began her career quite recently.  Her work is often featured on website banners, receipe books and editorial pieces. 


I approached Assignment 2 with the style of Ohm Mar Win.  She has such a graceful approach to watercolouring and her style and surface designs look amazing.  I really love how fresh she makes food look.  Her approach is very light and quick and her designs always have an effortless look to them.  At the time of completing this assignment I hadn’t experimented with watercolour so it was completed with pencils and photoshop.  It had a clinical look to it and although I was happy enough with it at the time, looking back I can see how flawed it was.

I used a sheet of A3 watercolour paper and went for the light approach she uses by using a watercolour brush and applied some water before the colour.  The results on the A3 sheet were lovely.

I used a brush pen to create some smaller images that could be layered into the image.  The idea was to create a sheet with lots of summer fruits and images associated with summer and then layer them and adjust the saturation.  A textured layer was also going to be put underneath.  I hadn’t considered composition however so I just launched into the image and adjusted as I went.  It would have been a good idea to create some thumbnails for focus.

The end result was something that definitely felt more ‘summery’ but I don’t know if it really hit the brief still.  A point of sale display 12×12 for summer fruits and autumn fruits was the original brief.  I just stuck to the summer fruits one to see if I could get that lightness of watercolour effect in my drawings and images.  I think I did get it, but it doesn’t look as light as Ohm Mar Wins versions.  It feels a lot heavier and darker and I didn’t add a texture the fruit or any shadows.

I went back and adjusted the text, but as I had scanned this in and hand drawn it, it was harder to manipulate as the letters weren’t selected.  That is something I’ll have to consider when doing it again.  So using some of the squiggles I put them in as a background image and it definitely gave the image a more interesting look.

It is definitely an improvement on the assignment, but it would need more work to hit the brief fully.  Maybe better colours on the text and a lighter feel to the background with a little more pattern?  I’m not sure but I can see the potential in the image, it is just not 100% there yet, but I would definitely use watercolour for food illustration in the future.

The brief

The brief was to create images which would be used within a campaign for a supermarket, to package and promote a range of seasonal foods. The supermarket is respected for the quality of food they supply. They want to promote this notion of quality in their design and packaging. The finished images will be a‘point of sale’ display sited in a store near to the fruit and vegetables. The final reproduction size will be 12 x12 inches. Your artwork can be same size or in scale.

Identifying key words

Summer Fruits and Autumn Fruits were chosen as the focus for the brief.  The key words for this brief were the seasons chosen and the fact that it was fruit associated with it.

Responding to words

A spider diagram was created to see what words were associated with ‘Summer’ and ‘Autumn’.  These words would assist in generating ideas for the point of sale images.

Generating ideas

From the words evoked from the spider diagram, the key ideas that were extracted were colours associated with the seasons and type of fruit commonly associated with them.


For research I examined the type of point of sales that shops had in my local area.  The only real point of sale for summer fruit was a chalk board with special prices on it.  Packages were often just transparent and the only visual on it was related to organic farming so displayed the farm it came from.  This was a photo rather than an illustration.  Logos and writing were the main focus for the packaging and often came in healthy green shades to indicate fresh and organic.The main source for images were found in magazines and advertisements and a range of images can be seen here on my link:

Drawing ideas up

Based on the research I wanted to create an image that would highlight all the positives of the season while expressing the common associations with it as much as possible.  First sketches were done in a mix of pencil, marker and ink.  I experimented with ideas on whether to express the fruit is a single way, grouped or as characters.

Having explored that idea I felt that although cute, the characterization of the fruit wasn’t meeting the briefs requirements of ‘ quality’.  It was a little too quirky and therefore the playful aspect could overwhelm the important message of quality of produce.

I then tried creating single fruit assets in illustrator.  The idea would be to create individual fruit and then copy and paste in group formats or create a pattern with the fruit.

Choosing ideas

As the illustrator images were much cleaner and sharper, they gave the impression that they were watery and healthy, therefore quality.  This meant that the brief would be met in relation to expressing quality fruit so I went with that.

Working within the given format and creating ‘thumbnails’

I decided that the first thumbnail allowed for the autumn theme to be conveyed easily and grouping the fruit together in the centre would bring the attention to it quicker.

The summer fruit theme worked for the 2nd thumbnail as I liked the idea of having falling fruit and a background of strong colour.  Strawberries and cream would be easily relatable as a summer fruit treat.


Considering viewpoint, composition and content

The idea for the autumn image was to ensure that the focal point was the fruit and that it appeared as if just picked.  The elements for autumn would be in the background and suggested through props.  Putting the fruit in the centre of the image and leaving some room at the top and bottom of the image would give room for text if needed.

As the image template was 12×12 inches, the important aspects would be to show off the fruit in their best light and ensure that the image wasn’t overwhelmed by other things.  I wanted the customer to see the fruit and understand that it was a point of sale for the fruit and not something else.


I created two sample boards which best represented the type of images that met the brief of ‘quality’.  In the autumn board the dominant colours are warm but definitely part of the autumn season.  The sky has changed colour and the warmer oranges and red dominate the fruit and landscape.

All images were sourced from, and as well as

The summer board has much brighter colours and blue is a dominant colour to give the impression that summer is here.  It works in this season but couldn’t be used in the autumn one as it would give the fruit an impression of decay or off season.  The blue can be used to convey summer for the image here, but has to be toned down for the autumn image.

All images were sourced from, and as well as

From there I started on the summer image and created a ‘strawberries and cream’ style image.  However, it went too far in one direction and lost the focus for the brief which was ‘quality’.  It began to look like a point of sale for strawberries only.

Hilary Lawler – Assignment 2 – 1st draft

Final artwork

I put the fruit in a group composition in the center of the images.  I used a larger image of two items of fruit in both and adjusted the layer properties to give the vibrant colour.  This gave the background a healthy and vibrant colour in the summer image and a lovely dark autumn plum and green tone in the autumn image.

The water splash was a free png image from and using this as a layer gave the impression that the fruit was fresh and mouthwatering.

The composition of the fruit was positioned in the lower half of the image for the autumn image and centered which I felt worked well.  There are a lot of triangle shapes in it which are offset by circles from the grapes and clusters of apples.

Both images have a coherency with each other even though they are different seasons.  They represent fruit that would be commonly found in supermarkets in Ireland and exotic or short season fruits have been excluded to give the images a longer shelf life usage.  Had I included figs, raspberries, melons or pineapples, then the point of sale would have had a short lifespan for use.

Images with text are also shown to demonstrate that this had been taken into consideration during the design process.  The font used was a Moon Flower font downloaded for study use only from