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I Heart Birds Series

Project Info

Duration: Jan – Aug 2018

Client: Architette Studios

Role: Illustration Designer

Mediums: Pencil, Procreate, Adobe Illustrator

I began the I Heart Birds series to create a visual lifer list with a focus on learning to be more efficient with my vector work.


When I am out birding in the field, I always have my camera and some way to take notes either digitally, or on paper. I observe the surrounding environment, and how the bird I am documenting is engaging with it. Some other things to take note of include what the bird is eating or doing, what the weather is like, or what other animals and insects are present.


The photographs I took out in the field are what become the direct underlay for my illustrations of the bird, and the backgrounds are inspired from where and what I observed them doing. The weather also plays into how they are portrayed. The basis for each illustration is either pencil or Procreate, and the finals are vector.


The I Heart Birds illustration style is simple in color and form, yet detailed in pattern, and posture. The small heart on each one represents the excitement birders feel in adding a new lifer to the list. These illustrations are selling as stickers and buttons very well, as the trend of “put a bird on it” still seems to be strong.

Lessons Learned

There are elements in design one can use to ensure an illustration is pleasing to the eye. Creating these graphics of birds in the wild have taught me a lot about contrast, balance, proportion, patterns, movement and color. The I Heart Birds series is my most colorful line, and am looking forward to the many more birds on my lifer list to practice with!

Further Reading

I love reading about the adventures others have as they add birds to their lifer list. In 2015, Noah Stryker went on worldwide expedition with the goal of becoming the first person to see more than half of the world’s birds in one year. He blogged about his daily excursions on the Audubon website and I was enthralled. He wrote a book about his experience entitled “Birding Without Borders”.


Disclaimer: The thoughts shared in this blog are solely my own and do not represent the perspectives of my professional relationships or clientele.


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