Jelly! / by Kate England


Making Jelly

Here's my next theme, jelly! Or jello (jelly-O) as it's called in the U.S. Spontaneously, I come to think of bright, fruity colours, transparency, wobbliness, and glossy shine. When I encounter a new topic I like to start off by doing some research. So let's see what I discovered. 

The History of Jelly and Gelatin

As it turns out, gelatin has been used for cooking since the 1400s. In the Victorian era gelatin was popularised with spectacular and complex "jelly moulds". Gelatin desserts were still served only in the households of Royalty and the elite. Until the mid-nineteenth century, making gelatin was a laborious and expensive task. In the early 1900s, with the event of powdered gelatin, it became easy and cheap to make jelly. 

Gathering Reference

With such an interesting story behind jelly, and so many impressive copper moulds, it's easy to get lost when you're preparing for your illustration. There are always several ways to go with a subject matter, more literally and more imaginatively. Both directions can appeal to me! 

Going With Your Instinct

My first thought though, was to capture those shapes! Perfect shapes, yet wobbly and broken in bits. I thought vectors would be a great technique, so despite all of my research, I turned to the more modern vector style. 

Creating Vector Sketches

I love working with vectors. It's all about finding the shapes and forms. Reducing the subject matter to its essence. But the clean shapes can feel like they lack some personality and that's why I like to marry my vectors with my ink sketches and also with grainy or grungy textures. Below you can see how my vector sketches turned out combined with my ink sketches.