Pattern explorations, one step at a time.

It’s been a busy day today for me.

The day started off with working on the revisions of template sketches for the Adorable Dogs book. It’s a kind of fussy and detailed process. Erasing, altering and/or adding to the templates can take a lot of focus. And a lot of kneadable eraser to pick up the eraser dust from a soft polymer eraser! Still, all that needed revisions were seen to and sent off for review. I did get one more new template drawn as well.

It was then time to pop out in the car. Binky, my SmartCar, hadn’t been out for over a week. So, a longer drive was needed to make sure the battery is topped up.

It was lovely to be driving around and seeing the autumnal colours. The skies were a dull grey and drizzly. The dampness made the colours shine all the more brightly against the gloomy skies and dark trunks and branches. So beautiful.

I also braved a local-ish supermarket to get some supplies. And I do mean braved! I’m so anxious to be out around other human beings it’s quite a stressful thing. Luckily, the supermarket was quiet and I was able to whizz around and pick up what I needed, and some treats too.

After lunch, I turned my attention to today’s video, which is a bit different. I’d had a request from a viewer of my videos to put close up images of the patterns at the end of the video. I’d been thinking about doing zoomed-in pattern drawing on a larger scale in a step by step manner.

I actually really enjoyed the drawing process and the insights it gave me into patterns. I’m not quite sure I’ve worked out the best way to do it yet.

Anyhoo, here’s the video :

Pattern Explorations | Borders 1 | Day 3

Another day, and another small clutch of borders are added to this page. Most of these patterns are inspired by Romanesque chevron and diamond patterns, some with a twist. Though there’s a couple in there that are reminiscent of Medieval floor tiles. And poke root managed to push it’s way into one section!

I really, really am enjoying adding patterns based on a theme to this page. Not just creating the patterns, but seeing how colour, shadow and highlight bring them to life. It’s a fascinating process for sure.

I’ve also made a decision to leave the case-bound A5 sketchbook to keep my pages in an A5 discbound system. I was getting frustrated with pages not lying flat, the awkwardness of turning the book around. The discbound system allows me to use individual sheets of paper, of many different kinds and colours. It’s flexible in it’s organisation too. I’ve flip-flopped ‘twixt traditionally bound sketchbooks and discbound sketchbooks for a while. My experience with this pattern exploration project has made me aware that the ability to work on a single sheet has become so important for many, many reasons.

Here’s the video for today’s patterns.

Pattern Explorations – Borders 1, Day 2

All the patterns in my sketchbook, and the arch, are variations of a basic grid pattern. A pattern based on Romanesque architecture – something I really, really love.

As I filmed the drawing of the arched patterns, I made many ‘mistakes’, which I worked with to create more variations.

Adding shadow to the central border in the arch really brought it to life. Something that made me smile, a lot. In fact, working with geometric patterns, especially ones that remind me so much of the architecture that I love, made me smile a lot.

It’s amazing how many patterns that are distinctly different can come from the same basic architecture of the pattern – the pencil grid and the initial zig-zag shapes in this example.

I do hope you have a look at the video and have a go at drawing along with me.

Pattern Explorations – Borders 1

The page of Eetings is complete, for now, so time to start looking at some new patterns!

My next page is going to be filled with border patterns. You can see I’ve used many border patterns in the work in progress. Quite a few are found in Romanesque architecture, or Early Celtic art.

As I use arched border patterns a lot in my art, I thought it would be nice to show how I draw them in my next series of pattern explorations.

So that is what I did in today’s video.

I don’t know what’s up with me today, but I’m more scatter-brained and wittery than usual.

In the video, I show how I’ve added colour to more, but not all, of the Eetings.

Pattern Exploration “Eetings” Day 3

Not much space left on the ‘Eetings’ page in my A5 sketchbook. Colour, shadow and highlight still to be added.

To the right is the start of a drawing using some of my pattern variations.

Here’s today’s video showing how I drew a few of the last patterns on the page.

“Eetings” Pattern Exploration, Day 2

As there are a few variations, I decided that a better name for this collection of variations on a theme would be “eetings”. And so they are named!

I’m not too fussed on a couple of the variations I drew in today’s video. Still, if you don’t try things out, you never know if they’ll work or not. Also, they’re opportunities to work with them and turn them into something that I do like!

Colour, shadow and highlight are all important in bringing these designs from a flat line drawing to something that has volume and life to it.

Here’s today’s video. If you like it, please consider giving a thumbs up, maybe even subscribing. Perhaps you’d share the video with others who would enjoy watching it too. Clicking ‘watch on YouTube’ will help my YouTube channel grow, if you’d be so kind.

Pattern Exploration No.3 “Eet” | Day 1

Pattern Exploration No.2 is now done, for now. The page is more or less full.

I enjoyed creating all the drawings on the page, but I learned most from altering the background in different ways, trying out different kinds of media. I talk through this in today’s video (link below).

So, it was time to start the next pattern, No.3. I really must find a better way to label these! I wonder if there’s a random name/word generator I could use…

The answer to that musing is yes! Many in fact. I went to the first one – Random Word Generator – and the word that came up was artisan! Fairly appropriate. Maybe I’ll play with the spelling of it to name pattern no3. Artyzan? The next word that comes up with eat, appropriate for No.3 as everything is looking very seed-poddy. Eet? I like Eet.

So, that’s decided! No.3 is now called Eet.

With this exploration, I’m starting with a teardrop kind of shape and seeing where that leads me. Some of the variations are familiar ones. Others not quite so. I’d like to break away from the familiar and try something different with this shape.

Here’s today’s video:

Pattern Exploration No. 2 | Day 3

I woke up this morning thinking that I really need to capitalise on my early morning energy and creativity and focus on the coloring templates for ‘Adorable Dogs’. When I’ve achieved my quota of sketches for the day (at least the quota), I can then turn my attention to my personal projects, such as my pattern explorations, and all my social media posting.

That’s why my posts may be later than is usual.

The explorations for pattern No.2 are just about done. I will spend the rest of this afternoon working on the page to complete it, well as much as I want to complete it at this time. Leaving some space for future additions is something that I think will be beneficial. It will encourage me to revisit and add to each pattern, something I’ve not done in the past.

Today, I wanted to try adding Zentangle patterns to the bands in the flowers. Rather than try just one pattern on each flower, I added different patterns to the bands, just to see what would happen! That’s exactly what the pages are for in this sketchbook (and any future pattern explorations ones too) – trying things out to see what happens!

Talking of trying things out. To the left and middle bottom, I’ve added some background patterns and colours. I wanted this to be something rather subtle. I think I’ve achieved that in the top left. In all cases, I used Derwent SoftColour pencils to draw the pattern. As they’d be resistant to water, I added a wash of colour over them achieve shadows, some areas more successfully than others.

I did, of course, film and talk through my thoughts and observations as I added to this page. And here it is:

Pattern Exploration No.2, Day 2 | Stylised flower

More variations of stems as well as the view of the flower itself today. In today’s video, I talk through how to draw the flower and to add colour to enhance the sense of volume to the bloom.

It’s been so heart-warming to receive such kind, supportive and encouraging messages about my YouTube videos. It’s a really nice feeling, a warmth in my heart and soul, to hear that people are enjoying creating along with me, or being inspired to draw and create.

Here’s today’s video, in case you’d like to join me in drawing some pretty flowers too.