YOU’VE PROBABLY GUESSED BY NOW . . .
. . . that I’m crazy about surface pattern design. I’ve been making patterns like a genuinely crazy person, 16 hours a day in order to build up a good portfolio, and collections for various surfaces I want to decorate. I may be nuts but I want to stick my art on everything – like a tagger! Here are some patterns I’m putting together into a collections called “Native Journeys” which is all about the images from various cultures.
Petroglyphs always remind me of secretive writings. At one time I knew how to read Egyptian hieroglyphics and got pretty good at it. I can’t remember it now, so it’s fun to make up my own.
I started with sketches on some, then illustrations using Adobe Illustrator. Later, I invented some of my own Adobe Illustrator brushes for the background. Then I altered the color schemes and background colors for some variations.
There are probably 15 versions of patterns that all come from the same drawings. That’s where they start – as drawings, random doodles – some are scanned, others made directly in Illustrator. I can make the digital brushes appear different by how I apply them with the mouse or tablet. One variation of movement can completely alter a digital brush so you never really know what it will look like until you apply them.
After all the elements are present on screen, I can arrange them into a pattern that perfectly repeats, which can then be applied to various surfaces, big or small.
So that’s a bit of explanation for how a doodle can become a “petroglyph” and then a pattern.
Not all artist work with digital images, real paint and paper, making books, making patterns and creating art for products. Some artists use very specific skills and tools.
One of my favorites true artists is Lori Lang-Scott, my dear sweet Masseuse. She is an artist with her hands, with oils, with fragrances, with music and lighting.
I come away from an hour with Lori able to do better what I do. I feel good. I smell good. I think good!
Her artistry is so skilled and superior to that of a “massage mill.” I look forward each time to my massage day where Lori practices her art on me. She is able to put me in a state of mind that I can be more in tune with what God wishes to do in me and through me. That is her artistic expression and it is glorious!
I love the above photo – See her art application to her little bundle of joy grandson canvas! Can’t you just feel the laughter?
Lori would say be good to yourself and give yourself a break. Allow another artist to be of service to you and practice their skills to bring you joy. And I do. I am committed to feeling as well as I can so that I am able to continue using my body to produce art as long as I can. Artist to Artist is a symbiotic fellowship of joy. Thanks Lori for being a true artist who serves others.
Southwest Hearts Pattern Design by Darlene Seale
I’ve been working on making patterns until my eyes are all dried out and my poor right hand is cramped from clutching my mouse. But I’m kind of addicted to doing this so don’t cry for me, Argentina! I’m having a blast.
I chose this one to share with you this week because it’s coming up on Valentine’s day and I love y’all! This pattern is intended for all kinds of products, but I’m thinking it would make a lovely wrapping paper around a small box filled with Sees Scotch Mallows! Just an idea in case you haven’t gotten anything yet for the one you adore. Prints, iPhone covers, tote bags, pillows, etc. are available now on Society 6 in case you have loftier goals in mind.
I painted all these hearts earlier as pixel-based designs in Procreate and in ArtRage. Sadly, I can’t use anything pixilated to create a pattern with until I convert it to vector art. Therefore I had to re-draw each of these pieces in Illustrator. Then I chose this Southwest color scheme. There are about 9 other color schemes available, but the above is the original. Below are a few more variations.
I’m planning to offer these on my website as downloadables for you to print from home. Think about how you could use them – wrapping paper, cut outs to paste as stickers (you could print them on label paper), or for use in craft projects such as on the cover of a lovely hand-made journal. I’d love to hear your ideas – so please feel free to share.
Happy Valentines Day! Make it a week of loving those you value most dearly and hold onto them!
Make Peace – 13 x 19 giclee print by Darlene Seale
I have to seek true peace when so much terror threatens my little world. I turn off the TV and the computer. I go to the beach. I go outside into the garden. I got into my studio and paint. This is my idealized world for a moment in time. But violence returns the minute the TV or computer screen go back on.
Young men physically assault and degrade a drunk Vanderbuilt college girl and people express outraged these privileged football players are going to jail. After all, she was drunk. They could do to her body what they wanted, couldn’t they? (If you think you are entitled to someone’s body, then you think like a rapist.)
And Isis. Boku Haram. How does anyone explain mad thugs who kidnap, rape, and viciously murder entire groups of people, particularly young girls and women who are used as collateral for their threats? Somehow they believe their god (little g) entitles them to commit human atrocities in his name.
I am weary and sad for the terror and grief that fill the hearts of mothers and fathers who have lost their own to irrational thinking and belief. A beheading. A burning. A rape. All are lost.
Reading the Bible I came across James 3:18: “The fruit of righteousness is planted in peace by those who make peace.” And so in response to all this ugliness I make a piece of art – to call one man to another in peace – like an offering of delicious soul cleansing fruit. It’s the best I can do with what my God has given me. For now.
“Make Peace” is available as a 13 x 19 giclee print from my products page. It’s also available on other products and print configurations at society6 and Fine Art America.
Sometimes people ask what I do differently on an iPad and in Adobe Illustrator. The two above samples show the original painting I did on my iPad in Procreate and the second one is the pattern that I created from it in Adobe Illustrator. Each individual flower had to be redrawn and re-colored in Illustrator then saved as separate drawings. That’s why there is a slight difference in the shapes, sizes, background. The painting is meant for a wall or made into a pillow. The pattern design below it is a “repeat” – so it can be used to create large bolts of fabric or gift wrap paper, rugs, and so on. Sometimes you have to create a repeat pattern so that the design can be printed in any direction, as in gift wrap.
Learning this has been a challenge. One day it all clicked because I realized that pattern design was a math problem, while painting isn’t. Once I conquered the technical aspects, I couldn’t stop making patterns. It gets me up in the morning and keeps me working until late at night. I have to stop occasionally to sleep, but it’s been rewarding to learn this powerful new kind of art application.
Hope you enjoy it too. Head over to my shop at Society 6 to see how these look in different configurations and on different products.