Now that I had completed my HERO design the progression of my SECONDARY designs sped up exponentially. Sian (my Tutor) was right, you cannot expect to create a cohesive collection of designs without first pinning down the HERO.

Strangely enough, I actually thought these designs would take as long, if not more as the HERO. The workshops with Matt now allowed me to create the designs in the manner I wanted without any technical hindrance.


For my first SECONDARY design, I utilised these 2 elements:

To remove the background on the coloured Rosebud I chose to use the MAGIC WAND and increased the tolerance to 55, making sure I clicked as close to the outline of the rose as humanly possible. When the marching ants appeared I hit the backspace to remove the background. I then selected the LAYER Tab > New Fill Layer > Solid Colour, and chose black as the solid colour. I dragged the rose layer beneath the solid fill colour and used the ERASER TOOL, in varying sizes, and ZOOM TOOL to remove any ‘static’ that would cause problems at a later stage. Once all the ‘static’ had been removed I then deleted the solid colour fill layer to showcase the rosebud on a ‘zero’ background.

The B&W Rose was really easy to clean:

Image > Adjustments > Gradient Map > Making sure that the white is white and the black is black (only these 2 contrasts should be visible) > Magic Wand (Tolerance 30-40) > Making sure the Contiguous is unticked

I created 3-4 New Duplicate Layers to bulk out the line and create a far more poignant black line and merged the layers together. I then used the ERASER TOOL to remove any ‘static’ and messy lines. I then created a new canvas and dragged the linear layer into/onto the canvas. Again, I used the ERASER TOOL to remove the surrounding background and merged the remaining white background contained within the rose and linear layer together.


I specifically have chosen not to colour the larger rose motif as it acknowledges the trend to juxtapose coloured and B&W images together, especially influenced by the French design house THEVENON. The background colour was chosen as #c5e6e1 but may change when the whole collection is finished. Again, I absolutely love the design and colour combo.


For my next SECONDARY design I used these elements:

I created a Print quality A3 Canvas in Photoshop and opened up my file library, choosing the abstract foliage print I had previously manipulated in Photoshop (colour). I used the FREE TRANSFORM TOOL (CMD+T) to shrink the image down (holding SHIFT all the while), and when the image was sat perfectly @ 25% of the A3 canvas (pink lines should inform of the correct proportions) I selected the LAYER Tab, scrolling to DUPLICATE LAYER. Using the MOVE TOOL I carefully dragged this new layer over to sit perfectly beside its neighbour. To create the reflection of the image I selected the EDIT Tab, scrolling down to TRANSFORM and then down to FLIP HORIZONTAL. I then selected both images and chose to DUPLICATE LAYERS, pulling the new layer down and repeating the TRANSFORM step, only this time choosing the FLIP HORIZONTAL. If any blemishes or lines are visible I would choose to use the SPOT HEALING BRUSH TOOL, which remedies any problems arisen from the duplication.


The linear studies of Buddleia and Cotoneaster were manipulated in exactly the same process as the B&W Rose in my first SECONDARY. I placed each motif strategically to create the most aesthetic and visual impact. I love it!!!!!!!! I made sure, by way of adhering the pink lines, to keep all the motifs as symmetrical as the background.

Next step? Finishing the BLENDERS………..


I have always wondered what the Windows were in Photoshop and what they could do; Skillshare, specifically MEG LEWIS’ Fundamentals of Photoshop: Getting Started with the Interface, Tools and Layer (No1), has given me the confidence to explore and find out more……COLOUR AND SWATCHES

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Colours can be created by toggling Sliders or by the Hue Cube, and as you can see there are so many different ways to set up a preferred way of working.

There is a preset amount of swatches which can be incorporated and new colour swatches can be added from individual designs or images; the possibilities are endless.


Can manipulate Layers by changing HUE, TONE, BRIGHTNESS/CONTRAST, INVERSION, POLARISATION, GRADIENT and even add a PHOTO FILTER. This will looked at in more detail at a later date.


(Left) The tab in the top right corner will create the menu (Right) that opens up some of the most important options when creating/manipulating layers.

The HISTORY Layer is a fantastic tool which will enable taking a step/multiple steps back in time, and can be extended if many steps had been taken.

Windows can be added or subtracted by choosing the middle icon, which will create an option list as above. Essentials will always default back to factory settings.


This is the LAYER Window; the tab/icon second from bottom right is used to create a new layer. Next, the RECTANGLE TOOL was used to create a perfect square (hold down SHIFT), which became the last colour used in the HUE CUBE.


This will bring up the PROPERTIES Window, which can be used to manipulate the shape. colour via it’s width or height etc. It is recommended, to avoid confusion when undertaking complex design solutions, especially when creating a multi-layered images, to rename each specific layer.

Clicking on the EYEBALL hides and shows the highlighted layer; the layer highlighted is the layer that can be moved or manipulate. The Default Background layer is usually locked, but can be unlocked by holding the padlock and dragging it to the trash. A COPY layer can be created by dragging the desired layer down to the ‘CREATE A NEW LAYER’ tab second from right at the bottom of the layer window.

A fantastic way to organise the layers is to colour code them!! Simply right-click on the eyeball on a chosen layer and choose between the colours on offer. I think this could be really handy to rank importance or layer sequence.


Typical Photoshop file is named .psd. FILE….SAVE AS….CHOOSE TITLE….WHERE (DESKTOP)….FORMAT (PHOTOSHOP).