I recently did the most wonderful course on Skillshare by the lovely and super talented Bonnie Christine.
I had always been interested in learning how to make a seamless repeating pattern and Bonnie’s ‘Into to Surface Pattern’ class took me through the process in a step by step, easy to follow series of tutorials.
Not only was the course super informative, Bonnie is just so infectiously lovely and inspiring that I was an eager beaver to get stuck in and started.
The result is far from perfect and there are many things I will do differently next time, but it’s definitely a good start!
Step One: Find some Inspiration
I began this step without watching the full course first so I really had no idea what direction I wanted to take with my pattern and had no vision of how my pattern would turn out. The course project runs with the theme of nature, so I went out and took photos of all the pretty flowers I could find, regardless of if they look good together or not.
The result is a bit of an incoherent final pattern.
Next time, I’ll be sure to keep in mind that the source inspiration actually has to work well together.
Step Two: Sketch
I drew these sketches, outside from life.
All of my source images, I either photographed or drew myself. As they’re, only for reference, they don’t need to be that great technically. I learned that it’s much better to source your own images than use ones that you find online.
Step Three: Create a Colour Palette
Again, I didn’t really have a colour palette in mind when I made this or have any idea where I was going with my pattern so I chose a few photos that I liked and pulled the colours from it using the eye dropper tool.
Although I ended up using most of the colours, I think next time, I’ll make a slightly narrower colour palette.
Step Four: Digitise, Colour and Make Motifs
Bonnie shows us various techniques for digitising our sketches. The tools I utilised the most here were the blob brush tool, shape builder tool, live paint tool and image trace.
Step Five: Build the Pattern
Although the components didn’t work so well together, I did my best to make it look as organic as possible. I discarded a couple of the motifs and played with the colours until it looked a little more coherent.
While I’m fairly happy with the outcome, I know that with my new skill set I can do so much better. I’m very excited at the possibilities and can’t wait to make my next!
Also I want to thank Bonnie so so much for her course. I would really recommend checking it out if it interests you!
Have a lovely week.