This Pirates of the Caribbean themed calf sleeve design was a pretty interesting project, because it's a perfect example of how the final design can be quite different from the first sketches, thanks for the continuous cooperation with the customer.
As the theme was the Pirates of the Caribbean movie series, I had to put together different elements from the movies, like Captain Jack Sparrow's supernatural compass, or his infamous pirate ship, the Black Pearl, a legendary sea monster, the Kraken, the Dead Man's treasure chest, the cursed Aztec gold medallion, the Chalices of Cartagena, or the skull from the newest movie's logo.
The base concept was the Black Pearl in a whisky bottle, closed by a skull-shaped plug, with the Kraken's tentacle around it. After I came up with the very first sketch, we already made some alterations, because we thought there should be more tentacles, to connect all the elements together.
The stages of the designing progress:
The second draft looked much better, so I started to add the base colors and some details. Soon we realized that the Dead Man's treasure chest is not really working in this composition and we should swap it to another element. First I was thinking about a pirate dagger and a pistol, then we have decided to choose Jack, the monkey.
The concept was ready, so I made the necessary changes and started to work on the final colors, the small details and the shadows. I wanted to add as many details as the design could take in reasonable limits. I really like how it turned out in the end. It's great to think together with the customers, because the work is more dynamic like that and I really feel like the final design will be on point.
The final version of the design: