The latest Spoonflower Design Challenge is Faux Textured Wallpaper. The brief was to "create a repeating design that you can’t help but touch". I had lots of ideas for this, but not necessarily the time or the skill to make them happen. In hindsight I should have saved my Mirror Ball design that I used for the Roller Rink Nostalgia challenge for this challenge. But I didn't, so I had to come up with something else.
I really like my collection of designs inspired by Spanish Tiles. Originally in teal and white, I have tried one or two coloured variations of the Entwined design. A while ago, while learning how to use mask layers in my graphics program, I played around with using textures with that design, so I decided to revisit those experiments for this challenge.
I was originally going to go with a blue and gold colour scheme, featuring blue glitter and gold foil.
But I wasn't completely feeling it, so in the end I opted for this pink and gold version.
The textures that I used here are glitter and gold foil. Did I make the right choice for my challenge entry? Voting is open until 3pm EST / 8pm GMT on 17th March, so if you like what you see, please vote for me.
This design was created for the Spoonflower design challenge - Roller Rink Nostalgia. When I thought of the brief I immediately thought roller ball, so that's what I attempted to re-create and I think that I did a pretty decent job!
I think that it would look amazing on a shiny fabric, like satin and it works really well with home decor and accessory items.
So this is a little bit late! But it's important to look back at what you've accomplished from time to time to see your progress, but also to help you to decide where to go next.
At the start of 2019 I did not have a regular art or design habit. I decided to enter the Spoonflower design challenge every week as a means to help me get into the habit, but also as a way to improve my design skills. After all practice makes perfect. I managed to enter all but 9 of the 47 challenges, so I'm happy that I achieved my goal.
I had one excellent result, where I placed 45th out of 760 entries with my "Dancing Blossom" design. This also spurred me on to create my first and (so far) only collection.
Some results were pretty good, some were pretty bad - generally I was fairly middle of the table. (I created a spreadsheet to track my progress!). The one thing that I consistently struggled with was time! I almost always found myself starting the actual design process a few hours before the submission deadline and subsequently rushing to complete it. That also left me no time for revisions, which very often showed.
These were my top 10 designs (according to my placement in the Spoonflower design challenges):
Many of the above designs are also available in my Redbubble and Society 6 shops.
So what's in store for 2020? Well, many of the designs that I created in 2019 used graphics that I had purchased (Diamania, Spanish Trig and Merboys being the exception in the above list). So this year I want to improve my drawing skills and create more designs featuring my own original artwork. I think that that will really help me to discover and hence develop my own unique style.
I recently posted about my latest design - A Kaleidoscope of Butterflies - which I entered into the Spoonflower Design Challenge. Part of the design process is to try out different colourways and there were several that I really liked, so I've added them to my Redbubble shop.
The first is a lighter blue version. I love the original teal version, but there was also something about this lighter version that really appealed to me. The second is on a light chevron background. The third is on a black background with white line work, which has a bit of an art deco feel. And the last version is on a purple background. Even though the design elements are the same, the different background colours and textures give four very different results. Maybe I'll revisit this in the future and play around with the colours of the butterflies, flowers and other elements.
This week's Spoonflower Design Challenge is all about kaleidoscopes. As usual I sat down to begin about four hours before the submission deadline! I had kind of decided I wasn't going to enter but then I found myself with some free time so I sat in front of the computer and decided to have a play.
The first elements that I went for were butterflies. I don't know if that was because deep in my subconscious I made the connection between kaleidoscopes and butterflies (the former being the collective noun for the latter) or if I just thought that butterflies would look pretty in a kaleidscope. The colour scheme came about organically once I had selected the butterflies that I wanted to use. It wasn't really a conscious decision, but I knew that I wanted to use pink flowers and then once I had the blue, tealy green and pink elements the purple just followed. It's a colour combination that I find myself using a lot. My signature colours perhaps?
I considered using the pattern function in Adobe draw to create the kaleidoscope effect, but due to the lack of time I decided to simply create a tile with a geometric pattern and then use the mirror repeat function in the Spoonflower uploader to achieve a kaleidoscopic look. Somehow it all came together and I LOVE it! Voting is now open at Spoonflower until Tues 19th November at 8pm EST. I'd love your vote if you're willing to give it.
The theme of this week's Spoonflower Design Challenge is Chintz. Chintz is originally from India featuring repeating, colourful motifs printed on cotton. It gained popularity in Europe in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries where it featured first in home decor (wallpaper, furniture and hangings etc.) , but eventually it began to be used on clothing. It became so popular that European countries banned importing it fearing that it would destabilise their local textile industries.
Over time Chintz has been used to describe a particular type of floral fabric - think Laura Ashley. It fell out of fashion in the early twentieth century, but is now seeing something of a revival. If you're interested in learning more there are some interesting articles on the V&A Museum blog.
While I was researching Chintz (check out my Chintz Inspiration board on Pinterest) I came across a lot of images of teacups and china. Hence the inspiration for my design. I wanted to go for a more contemporary feel, which I did by using watercolour, chintzesque floral designs.
If you like the design please vote at Spoonflower. Voting closes Tuesday 12th Nov at 8pm GMT (3pm EST).
In addition to the purple, I also used light blue, tan and pale yellow backgrounds. All four variations are available in my Redbubble shop and will be coming soon to Spoonflower.
I had an idea for a Skillshare class about creating a "recipe" for mixed media art that would enable beginners to get great results more easily. I decided to try out my recipe digitally and it was while I was doing that, that I came up with my new art peice "Golden Raindancer". I knew that I wanted to depict a dancer and maybe some sort of rain. The original work was far too busy and I didn't like where it was heading so I decided to take the dancer and place it on a much simpler background. I love the combination of red and black and gold. "Golden Raindancer" is now available in my Society6 and Redbubble shops.