Cider Labels Inspired by Folk Tales

Near the beginning of the semester module we were offered the chance to contribute towards a live brief. The brief was to produce 6 labels forĀ  co-fermented craft cider company, where the ciders were named after various folk and fairy tales. “Telling a story” was a priority for these images. I thought I should try my hand at producing some labels because I love the topic. The target audience for this cider were craft beer drinkers, young adults aged about 18-30 years old, and the artwork must NOT appeal to children in any way, even if they are illustrations inspired by fairy tales.

This project took a lot of brainstorming to get any ideas that I was happy with, and even though I’m pretty happy with the images I’ve produced, I still don’t think I quite hit the criteria of telling a story.

I decided to create these images using lino cuts, but I wanted to add color and typography. I’m never happy with any digital font I can find to match well with my work, so for these illustrations I experimented a lot with hand written typography. I personally struggle quite a bit with this but its good to get some practice in.

I know these sketchbook pages don’t look like much, but I did eventually use a number seven and the text “ravens” for my “7 Ravens” image, and the yellow pen text with “Run Rabbit, Run” was used as well. One thing that I have definitely learnt from this little project is that I definitely need more practice with not just creating hand drawn text, but with incorporating that text gracefully with images I’ve created.

It took a lot of trial and error and experimenting to get the images right in Photoshop. While I was happy with the colour choice I had chosen, I realized that I had made the mistake of using the wrong tone of colour for the wrong things.

If I was going to use these images for cider labels, and the images weren’t going to be especially large, the text just was not going to show up like this. It was a simple fix though, and all I had to do were swap the colours round and they read clear enough, even when the images were relatively small.

The apple tree image was a different problem. I wanted the text to be properly incorporated within the branches of the tree, so I used my graphics tablet to write the words by hand. I’m still not 100% happy with the result but I got it to the best of my ability. I tried out many different brush textures, but decided to go with a thin brush that I could write scribbly text with, because I thought it reflected well with the thin and pointy branches.


Overall, I have learnt a lot from creating these three images, and am fairly happy with the outcomes.