Design - I'm an Illustrator Gal not Photoshop

I have access to many kinds of drawing and painting tools to create my designs. Despite this large "toolbox" I gravitate to what is most comfortable - for me that is Adobe Illustrator. Every design always starts out as a series of loose pencil sketches on paper.

Once the concept is on paper I bring it into Illustrator to add details, fine tune composition, add color and finally develop the motif repeat. Above are a few patterns which are representative of "flat" style artwork. This style is very popular and something I am comfortable producing.

That said, I am realizing I need to venture more outside my comfort zone by learning different techniques. This will help expand not just my knowledge, but also hopefully attract a entirely new audience to my work. I have a basic understanding of Photoshop, I can edit/manipulate images but beyond that I had little use for the program. Photoshop is an extremely powerful program for illustrators as designs created in PS have more of a "painterly" look and feel. So to jump start my Photoshop "adventure" I have signed up for a 6 week class with a focus on illustration. Below are examples of my first homework. I'll be posting more progress on Instagram