Taboocha mock Advertising Illustration + Process
Noticing a lack of advertising illustrations in my portfolio, I decided to take on a "mock" project. So please do keep that in mind as your proceed – I have not been paid to make this work! I simply wanted to show that I could execute something in the vein of this illustration market, with my own twist. 
Market Research 
The first thing I did when embarking on this project was to see, of course, what was out there. What kind of products were getting the "illustrated" treatment? Who was getting commissioned to create these ads, and more importantly, what did they look like? 

I found that it was mostly beverages, candies & cookies receiving the illustrated treatment. These were often very dynamic and playful, yet kept a limited colour palette to remain easy on the eyes. Finally, there had to be sufficient space for legible text and branding, plus the product being advertised had to be treated with precision and attention to detail. 

Scroll to the bottom for artwork sources.
Brand Research
The brand I decided to do the mock ad campaign for is a local Hong Kong brand called Taboocha. They brew kombucha (which is touted as a healthy probiotic fermented tea). What I like about their brand is that they take in returned bottles and donate HK$1 to a local dog charity for each bottle received. They also place emphasis on their use of organic ingredients and small production scale. 
Image Research 
With the initial research behind me, I knew that I wanted to incorporate natural & local Hong Kong elements into my illustration: Hakka culture, red market lamps, local dogs, banyan trees & boats (initially I was also thinking of trams). Finally, I wanted to make sure that the design of the bottle was also incorporated into the overall illustration. 
Loose sketches
Before I work out any thumbnail layouts, I usually do some loose sketches to see what I can come up with. I find this to be a much less restrictive way of coming up with ideas and seeing what works and what doesn't. 
Thumbnail Sketches
Once I had a better idea of what kind of visuals I wanted to have in my illustration, I moved on to designing the thumbnail layouts. I decided that my ad campaign would have 3 final outputs: an instagram ad, MTR escalator crown ad*, and MTR 12-sheet banner ad**. I explored two different options for all outputs. At the end, I chose the most consistent concept, so that I could start with one final drawing and adjust it for all layout types. 

* escalator crown ads are the portrait banners that are just above the escalators on the way up or down the Hong Kong metro (MTR).
** 12-sheet banner ads are the large-scale landscape banners that you find inside any subway station 

The reason I opted for these 3 ad types is because:
a) most people spend a lot of time on social media apps such as instagram and
b) most people in Hong Kong use public transportation and do not drive
... therefore the likelihood to being exposed to an ad would be higher. 

I opted out of doing a traditional magazine print ad as I find most people don't really read magazine nowadays (although the portrait banner ad in this case could easily be adapted for such). 
Final sketch (Procreate / iPad)
I decided to execute the final drawing in Procreate (on the iPad) as I like using that program and wanted to see if it would be practical for creating a multifaceted ad campaign, especially one that included a large scale piece – the 12-sheet banner ad measuring up to 3 x 1.5 metres! 

My ultimate conclusion is that, while a wonderful tool for drawing and creating art, Procreate is rather restrictive with layers when it comes to larger files. It is also highly impractical when it comes to taking a single image and cropping it for different layouts. There is also no option for adding text, which is what I needed to do in order to create a "realistic" ad. 

Therefore, I decided to import everything over to Adobe Photoshop and continue the work using my Wacom tablet. Luckily, Procreate lets you export files as multi-layered PSDs. 
Final illustrations + colour + text (Photoshop)
Continuing on with Adobe Photoshop, I proceeded to refine and edit all the final illustrations. Before adding colour, I worked out the layout and position of the text and logo, making sure they would be highly visible for their size and application. The colour palette was inspired by the design of the bottle and kept as minimal as possible. 

For the instagram ad, no additional text was needed as the copy would be in the description of the post. I decided to turn this output into a GIF as instagram presents the perfect opportunity for utilising motion to capture the audience's imagination. 
MTR escalator crown
MTR 12-sheet banner
Final mock ups
In order to show more effectively how each artwork could be applied in the real world, I created the mock ups below. That is how I also came to the conclusion to shorten and resize the text in the escalator crown ad. Please note that these images are not mine. Sources below. 
MTR escalator crown
MTR 12-sheet banner
And that's it! Thank you for viewing my project. Like and comment if you wish ~
If you prefer a talk-talky video of me explaining my process instead, see below! :)

I used some images in this process (above) that aren't mine. Here are the sources: 
- Ad illustration examples: Pepsi by John Alcorn, Oreo by Brosmind, Absolut Vodka by Rlon Wang, Oreo by Andrew Bannecker, (RED) by Brosmind, ihome3 by Unknown
- Taboocha Kombucha website & instagram
All images © Kat J. Weiss 2019 (unless otherwise specified). Do not reproduce without 
the expressed written consent of Kat J. Weiss.
Taboocha mock Advertising Illustration + Process

Taboocha mock Advertising Illustration + Process

Mock advertising illustration campaign for a local Hong Kong kombucha brewery, Taboocha.


Adobe Photoshop
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Attribution, Non-commercial, No Derivatives

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