I´ve been having fun making some new patterns from my cockerel design:
A few months ago I had some fabric samples printed with a few of my designs. I was recently inspired to make these into bunting and cushions to show alongside the digital prints on paper of the same designs which I’m currently exhibiting in the beautiful tea room Chokolata in Vejer de la Frontera.
Here is a cockerel (which started out as a stencil on wood) being sewn with a contrasting border prior to his edges being frayed.
Here is the finished bunting hanging at home. To see photos of the bunting at the exhibition click here
I also made bunting from the fabric sample printed with my 2CV design (which evolved from my ‘7 Days’ illustration project).
Click here to see the bunting at my exhibition.
Here are the cushions.
I backed my printed fabric samples with contrasting velvet, cotton and corduroy to make them go further.
The Dragonfly pattern also evolved from my ‘7 Days’ illustration project.
To see photos of the cushions at my art exhibition in Chokolata click here
‘7 Days‘ is the title of the fifth and final assignment I completed for my illustration course with the OCA (Open College of the Arts)
The series of 7 patterns (1 for each day of the title) was inspired by a summer boating holiday on the Canal du Midi in the south of France, and also by the wonderful woodblock designs for wallpaper and fabric of Marthe Armitage, the dramatic wallpapers featured in Sherlock the TV series and the films August:Osage County and American Hustle.
The title page shows the location:
I chose 7 themes from the trip and made a motif for each, which I then multiplied to make a pattern:
Day of the 2CV
Day of the Sunflower
Day of the Plane Tree
Day of Patisserie
Day of the Dragonfly
Day of the Grapevine
My ultimate aim is to reproduce some if not all of these patterns on wallpaper, fabric and other surfaces.
The method was pretty much the same for each pattern; here’s an outline:
For those who are interested in seeing the production method for each image in more detail I’ve added them below:
For the background I made a map of Europe by tracing the outline in pencil onto squared paper
which I then scanned to Photoshop and inverted
I then collaged the map in Photoshop layers with some bought paper
and marbling I had made using oil paints
and a French flag which I found through an internet search
I distorted the map with the free transform tool and applied my inverted outline of a plane tree and grapevine pattern (methods below), adjusting the layer blending modes, tone, saturation, curves and levels in Photoshop.
I printed the text ‘7 Days a journey in patterns’ from Photoshop , traced it in pencil and scanned the tracing back into Photoshop where I coloured / inverted it
I wanted to show the location of the Canal du Midi, so next I made a collage of another map of France I found through an internet search, applying torn fragments from a French road atlas
working over it in water soluble green crayon and a wash of acrylic paint
before applying a crackle glaze and white acrylic paint to highlight the cracks and scanning it into Photoshop
I traced the outline of the canal in Corel Painter layers from this map I found on the internet and applied it to my cropped collaged map in Photoshop, adjusting the tone and saturation, adding text to mark Toulouse and Sete (the towns at either end of the canal), and creating a border using the brush tool and a scan of aged paper in layers.
I had a practice run at labeling France on a print out my map of Europe (to which I’d applied a crackle glaze and white acrylic paint) with collage and biro
I cut out the collaged label of the lower left version in Photoshop and applied it over my background, including a smaller duplication of the ‘flagged’ France and a smaller duplication with reduced opacity of the Canal du Midi map over the larger ‘flagged’ France map
Finally, in Photoshop, I adjusted the tone and saturation of the background to improve the contrast, added and coloured a boat from the locks pattern (see below) labelled the Canal du Midi on the larger map insert and added an inverted outline of the 2CV drawing (see below).
Research photo taken in France, I also referred to a photo I found on the internet
Scanned to Photoshop, line work cleaned and cut out
Coloured in Photoshop
Curves adjusted, image duplicated and scanned paper added in Photoshop layers for background texture
Tone adjusted to achieve different coloured versions
3 sketches made on site to show how the canal boats go ‘up and down hill’ via the lock system
1 of many, many photos I took of the boat in a lock
A series of sketches I made to work out how to show how boats move up and down stream through the lock mechanism in ‘3D’
I traced the final sketch, made a pen drawing and scanned it to Photoshop in 2 parts
The line work is cleaned, duplicated, aligned and cut out in Photoshop
Outline duplicated in Photoshop layers on a scanned paper background with stripes added with the brush tool
Collage and colour applied to the line work in Photoshop layers: leaves with the collaged map of France (see above); water with the brush tool; locks with the photo of concrete shown below
Finally the single unit is duplicated and stripes of scanned blue paper are added in Photoshop layers. I also added a final outline layer over the top to improve definition. The repeated unit is reminiscent of the form of Tibetan thangka art
Research photos taken on the spot
Rough sketches for possible pattern layouts, I wanted to show the sunflowers rotating, as if towards the sun
Drawings scanned to Photoshop, line work cleaned, trimmed and cut out
Pattern trials made by duplicating layers in Photoshop
Sunflowers coloured in Photoshop layers: yellow centres and green parts collaged with different tonal versions of the France collage map (see above); petals with flat and graduated digital colour
Collaged sunflowers duplicated to form single unit of repeat
Single unit duplicated and flipped vertically
Colour and pattern trials
I finally settled on a blue background, to represent the summer sky, adding texture to it via a scanned canvas
Planted between 1681-1810, plane trees line long lengths of the Canal du Midi and are dying because of a fungus but I decided not to portray the dying trees in favour of ‘aesthetic delectation’.
Sketch made on site
1 of many research photos taken on site, I also referred to this Natural History Museum photo
Rough sketches to work out a single repeating unit
Pen drawing of the single unit
Single unit duplicated in Photoshop layers
Pattern line work inverted
Yellow tonal version of my collaged map of France added as a background to the inverted cut out line work. It overpowered the pattern which lacks definition
I redrew the single unit in pencil, adding more detail
Drawing scanned to Photoshop, line work cleaned and cut out
Collaged in Photoshop layers with my France collage map
Line work inverted and tone of collage adjusted, I love these autumnal shades but my pattern needed to be summery green
Layer effects applied to inverted line work
The version I decided to repeat
Pen drawings made from photos
Drawings scanned to Photoshop, line work cut out, inverted, duplicated and coloured in Photoshop and Corel Painter12
Coloured cakes duplicated to make a pattern
Inverted line work introduced to background to add depth, subtle granular texture added
Partial pen drawing
Drawing scanned to Photoshop, cleaned, part duplicated and flipped horizontally
Playing with tone and saturation settings
Line work inverted
Playing with tone and saturation settings for the inverted version
Inverted line work multiplied
Line work on a scanned paper background
Preliminary sketches from photos
Scanned and duplicated
The single unit was collaged in Photoshop layers with the following material:
marbling I made with oil paints
scanned to Photoshop and tone/saturation adjusted for the grapes
my collaged France map for the vine leaves
textured paper for the ground
textured paper for the vine trunks
The duplicated collage
A closer crop