And so my final designs have been coming on a pace: I've tried to play around with each motif in as many ways as possible to get the best effect and produce as many designs as possible to give me plenty to choose from. Below are some of my earlier designs which were good for practice work, but perhaps don't make best use of the square shape. I tried playing around with layered brushes (left) but I think the resulting image is too flat - I'm not trying to replicate screen print, I want to make the most of the digital medium. Also I feel the textured feather hair is totally lost here. I also think having a totally flat background is a bit boring (right) and I think in general, having a combination of photography and drawing, as I have experimented with all project, would generally look stronger.
So I went back to my context research and thought more about my design layout, realising that the edges are actually the most important part of the scarf as this is actually what you see when it is worn. Here I tried to use more photographic elements and I think this has a much more eye catching visual effect. The feedback I got from everyone was that they really liked the bird neckline (left scarf) so I decided to use this as its own motif and I think it looks rather striking and over-the-top (and therefore encapsulating the theme).