This weekend I got to finish off the borders for the illustrations of our latest book that I’ve been working on now for at least three years.

The borders bring together the art study that I’ve been doing for the past couple of months on Samoan traditional tatau (tattoo) designs, motifs and meanings both for the male pe’a or malofie and the female malu.

The interesting part has also been about learning the different Samoan names and parts of the designs as well as some of the meanings of them.

Another interesting challenge and part of the design work has been working with watercolours and ink as a medium rather than the usual acrylics or colour pencils with ink that I’ve used with past illustrations.

The consideration of the colour palette has also been another area that I’ve been playing around with ideas and decided to go with a more contemporary take on the earthy colours with the black ink representing the actual tattooed symbols, icon or motifs.

And now for the actual artwork to begin as the text is now almost ready to go and it seems like just yesterday when I was working on the text on our last trip to Melbourne which then seemed complete but now I know was waiting for the right time to start which is now…