Wednesday, February 10, 2016

From Doodle to Pattern: Swirling Bursts

Hello Wonderful Readers!

It has been a long time since I have had a new post.  I am hoping to share more regularly in 2016.  To kick things off, here is a look at my next Spoonflower contest entry and a peek into my process of turning a doodle into a seamless pattern.  The theme for this latest contest was only a color palette:  Gray, Cream, Cucumber and Peach (exact shades were chosen by Spoonflower).  Since there was no other theme than the colors themselves, it was a perfect time for me to enter an abstract design.  If you follow me on Instagram, you may remember my Throwback Thursday series where I shared pages from my many doodle books.  For this contest I chose one of my most favorite doodles which also happened to be the first doodle page I shared.  I love how this doodle has a lot of movement and energy.

Here is a look at the doodle side by side with the final pattern:

Creating a repeating pattern is an extra challenge when you begin with a design that is already in a rectangular format with a lot of dense detail.  To achieve the seamless pattern I wanted, I worked back and forth between Photoshop and hand drawing to expand the tile size and repeat and add elements to create a pattern that would be complex and integrated enough not to appear boxy when repeated.

Here is a look at that process.  In this photo you can how I printed a portion of the in progress pattern, still with gaps, so that I could do some more hand drawing to fill in the space.

Once I finished filling in all the gaps and creating a seamless pattern in Photoshop, I next imported the design elements into Illustrator, traced them, and then began the long clean-up process to create crisp, smooth, beautiful elements.  I also waited to colorize the drawing until it was converted to a vector file.  Coloring this design was the most challenging aspect.  There was not a lot of contrast between the colors in the designated palette and I wanted to make sure that all the detail work of the hatched curves wouldn't be lost when viewing at a zoomed out scale.  We were allowed to also included black and white in addition to the 4 colors and I ended up using both in order to help the elements pop.

Here is a look at the final pattern:

I would love your VOTE this week!  (One voting session per person, but feel free to vote for as many designs as you wish)  Thanks!!!
And if you are interested in seeing this and many of my other designs You can find this design in my Spoonflower Shop.