Key Steps in Illustration: Educational Strip

This exercise asked to create an educational leaflet on the topic of “The Onset of Puberty” / “What is happening to my body? It’s going all mad”  with focus on one aspect of puberty in 5 frames. 

I worked out what aspect I wanted to cover by noting all idea that came to my mind in my sketchbook. I also did a bit of research online in how different sources describe the process to girls and boys, including the NHS. The FPA also published “The Period Book” which explains this aspect to young girls. Some examples of illustrations about puberty can be seen here, here, here, or here

I decided I wanted to cover the “growing into a woman” aspect, i.e. how the body shape changes, breasts will grow, and pubic hair will grow. 

First, I worked on a few sketches and played with some ideas. I wanted to show a girl as main character, also I also wanted to create a cartoon/comic look-and-feel that might appeal to the younger target group. 

Sketchbook files

I then worked out the thumbnails for the leaflet as line visuals:

I continued to create some gouache paintings of the scenes I want to include in the leaflet. This is a girl turning into a woman, and how different parts of her body will grow. 

I then processed the paintings and worked on the layout digtially in Photoshop and InDesign. I played around with some options and placing the figures in the layout. I did not take many screenshots, but eventually came to the following result: 

I find my first layout a bit boring. It’s mostly white and does not really lead the eye to well through the frames. 

I changed the format from landscape to portrait format and decided to leave out the “boobs” page. I felt it did not really add any value to the leaflet. I added some colour blocks for the lettering in “girly” colours, also to make it look a bit more like a cartoon. 

Final Layout

Key Learnings: 

  • I struggeled a lot with this exercise. I realise I don’t particularly enjoy Graphic Design too much (interesstingly enough this was once my dream job) for a full leaflet. 
  • I felt very uninspired, and could not think of what girls would want to read and how they want to get the information on puberty. Researching only helped to a certain extend. 
  • Overall, I think I met the brief in terms of that I finished a layout for a leaflet, but my design could certainly be improved. I believe it needs some feedback to point me in the right direction.


  • NHS. “Stages of puberty: what happens to boys and girls”, page last reviewed Nov 16, 2018. URL
  • FPA. “The Period Book”. URL
  • Google Search “Puberty + Illustration”. URL URL, URL, URL

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