Making a Pattern – International Dog Day 2019

Happy International Dog Day 2019! Here’s a rather dramatic Tibetan Spaniel keep an eye on things.

Hej hej!

It’s been a while but so much has gone on in the background of my life, but I guess that’s for another day. I thought I would finally make a walk-through of pretty much the only thing people ask me about.

~ How to make a pattern! ~

I will preface this with saying that I have deliberately saved these out as low quality jpegs as I deal with art-theft with my patterns a lot. Secondly, this is an exceptionally lazy pattern even for me.

Ok first things, it’s important to have a basis for your pattern for what you want. In this case, I knew that I wanted a pattern which is super moody and heavy in florals. This was my original sketch, and also the rough block in of the plants.

Depending on the complexity of your pattern I suggest making at least 3 or more components to play around with. In this case this one is made up of 14 groups of flowers.

So, colour them up, choose a background colour and make a choice! You can either treat your compenants as seperate layers that you can drop in where you want, or you can be lazy like me and treat your piece as a block.

Since I was treating mine as a block it needed to look nice and full as a stand alone piece. In the circles you can see where I added in more leaves and flowers to make it feel more full.

Ok, now that I’m happy with this, I went along and merged the layer down as a transparent layer.

*** It’s important to keep your items completely separate from the background! Also everything MUST fit inside the canvas. ***

In this case I duplicated my piece and flipped it. It’s a lazy way of making there feel like there’s more variation than there is. If you’re working piece by piece then I suggest to keep copies of your seperate pieces and and merge a block of an area you’re happy with. Build little blocks of composition to play with.

Cool, time to play with pattern making! Go to your toolbar -> Other -> Offset.

You should see a lil window pop up! Make sure to click “Wrap Around” and time to play with the pixels. Sometimes I play with Horizontal and Vertical at the same time, but this time I decided to work with vertical only.

Since I knew I was going to build my piece vertically I extended the canvas by another 80% so there’s enough room for everything.

I then messed around until I was happy with how it overlapped. I then erased areas and copy-pasted areas so that it looked neat and overlapped nicely. As you can see in the green circles it’s pretty neat but these are the original areas of overlap.

Next I worked horizontally. I merged my layers down again (minus background!) and duplicated/flipped them. I also extended my canvas vertically by another 80% to fit the flowers in.

Again, Toolbar -> Other -> Offset.

Time to play with the Horizontal settings to get an overlap I liked. I lowered the opacity on the bottom layer and fiddled with the above layer in offset until I was happy. I then went and erased, moved, and copy/pasted flowers above and below each other to neaten up the edges. Essentially, do what you need to do to make yourself happy.

As long as there’s no intentional gaps, and you’re happy you’re done! Congrats you’ve just made a repeating tile!

This is also not the end if you choose to go on! With layer settings, gradient maps and levels you can give your pattern a different vibe if you intend to reuse it. As you can see I played around and made a few variations and they give a different feel.

What is obsession you ask? Making a pattern to fit in this little slither of a wall.

If you enjoyed this walk-through and used it to make something I’d love to see it! Tag me in on it on Twitter or Instagram @chervellefryer

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