Thursday, September 26, 2013

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Controlled Substances

I spent too long at the pharmacy counter tonight filling out paperwork for a $7.50 prescription. Sheesh.  

Monday, September 23, 2013

Constellation Pattern

Here's my entry for the weekly Spoonflower fabric design contest. I took last night's drawings, traced over some diagrams of constellations from the month of September, and assembled it all in Illustrator. 

constellation repeat pattern for fabric

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Constellation brainstorming

I'm brainstorming constellation pattern ideas, and invented my own constellations, with wild names.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Apple Pie Patterns

September is apple season in Washington State, and though I no longer live there, I miss the fall trips to the Greenbluff Orchard north of Spokane. They had this variety of apple called Elstar that was just the right blend of sweet and tart, and perfect for baking.

Well Washington exports apples everywhere, so I picked up some Golden Delicious apples at the grocery store. I also took Joy of Cooking's suggestion to make a lard crust to go with this pie. I've never baked with it before, but they say it makes a flakey crust. If you have the book, I made "Apple Pie I" with the lard crust.

apples and lard

bin of peeled apples

uncovered, unbaked apple pie

Here's the pattern bit: I used some small sakura cutters from my bento supplies to make holes for the top.

cutting a pattern into the top crust with bento cutters

So pretty. It stretched out a wee bit when I moved it to the top of the pie.

decorative sakura flower pattern pie crust

But the end result is still cool. And delicious.

assembled pie with sakura blossom pattern

 The end result:

baked pie with flower pattern

This is definitely the flakiest crust I've ever seen, and the pie tastes fantastic. The only downside is it definitely tastes like animal fat. Mixed with the sweetness of the apples it's nice, but on it's own it's a bit strong. I might try subbing half butter or shortening next time to get the best of both worlds.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Abstract Geometrics

Geometric patterns are really easy to make in Illustrator. Just take a tessellating shape and play around with it.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Emerald Pinwheels

Here's my entry for Spoonflower and Milk and Honey Shoes' Small Scale Geometric pattern contest. I chose emerald green because it's Pantone's color of the year, and I always thought green heels looked sexy. The basis of this pattern design is hexagons. Want a geometry puzzle? Figure out how I made a rectangular repeat tile using the bottom design.

green pinwheel hexagonal pattern
original artwork for hexagon pattern

Monday, September 16, 2013

Mona Bear, Everywhere!

I wanted to share with you some fun things that arrived in the mail: a phone pouch from caseable (thanks guys for the free gift), and gift wrap from Spoonflower.

The caseable pouch is not yet available for sale, but it will be soon! Check their website for the status. This one fits a Nexus 4. So nice to get cool cases for us Android users. I own two laptop cases from caseable and they are very high quality and really fun.

Here's the back side on top of the gift wrap.

I really like Spoonflower's Satin gift wrap.  It's so smooth and the printing is very crisp.

Here's the case and the gift wrap. Vector graphics make it so easy to scale all of this.

And here's the girl who inspired it all, Ramona!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

More geometrics

Today I played around with hexagons and came up with this design. It looks very dimensional depending on the coloration.

hexagonal pattern segment

hexagon based geometric pattern 365 patterns

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Green Antlers & Spoonflower contest

My Mom asked me to make a green colorway for my Antler inspired pattern:

Antler Damask in Greens

Also please take five minutes to vote for me in this week's Kuler Spaces Spoonflower Contest. You may vote for as many designs as you like, but you may only vote once. Remember my design looks like this:

purple damask pattern 365


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Antler in Sea

This pattern is now available as a Spoonflower print. I think it would be cool as a large-scale wallpaper.

Antler Damask in Sea

Monday, September 9, 2013

Loopy Colors

I made a few colorations of my loopy damask pattern this weekend using the Adobe Kuler app as part of the latest Spoonflower pattern contest. The app is free, and very addicting! I made about 40 different color schemes so far. Loopy Damask in Lipstick Concrete Loopy Damask in Urchin Loopy Damask in Nightlights Loopy Damask in Romantic

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Texture Repeats

I want to add textures to some of my patterns to give them more dimension. This means making repeat textures. Repeats within repeats. Here goes... This first one is a quick experiment. I want to make future textures more subtle.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Loopy Damask

Today I experimented with making a Damask pattern! I discovered the mirror tool in AutoDesk's Sketchbook Pro. I think I will try making more of these.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Working Large

Earlier this summer I visited Houston and stopped by the fabulous Texas Art Supply store. This is one of my favorite art stores ever.* Basically my test for a "good art store" is do they carry litho crayons. It has been 5 years since I did lithography and I no longer have access to stones or a press, but this is still my metric. It's such a historic yet arduous medium that only stores that cater to serious art students would bother to stock such items. Items which generate very little profit, mind you -- litho crayons sell for a couple bucks. There are plenty of stores that cater to more popular media: painting, crafting, drawing, but you're not going to find the cool stuff like cerulean oil paint crayons with a color that makes you salivate (I still want that pigment but I need a plan to use it before I let myself buy it.)

 Okay, so Texas Art Supply is a store where you will be swooning over all the pretty colors and items. I found an urge to work large and loose, and I found these cool paint markers. The tip is about .5 in across.

I used three markers and a big sheet of bristol paper tonight.

My pattern was inspired by tortoises and an incredible design from the 1920s I found here.

*Two other favorite art stores: Flax in San Francisco, and the University Bookstore in Missoula, MT. Have a favorite art store? Please leave a comment, and also let me know if they have litho crayons.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


Tonight I didn't do a pattern. Instead I played around with designing a text logo for my site. I'm finding Autodesk's Sketchbook Pro for iPad to be a nice tool for this sort of thing because it has layers and zoom.

I think my next 365 project is going to involve typography. :)

Monday, September 2, 2013

Post PAX

Okay, I just returned from PAX Prime (Penny Arcade Expo) in Seattle. It was very inspiring to meet the artists from Strip Search, watch Mike and Jerry create a strip, and I even got to ask a question to Mike and Jerry on what it's like to be a creative in the desolate Spokane, Washington. (Their answer: you outgrow it, and people like Robert Khoo just aren't there. Kind of like my experience.)

Anyhow, my internet connection was very bad for the weekend, but I did keep up the art during all the busy days. My fitbit tells me I did about 15K steps per day, so I was pretty tired.

Here's two drawings I made. The first is some ornamentation from the roof of the Paramount theater.

ornament from paramount theater seattle

This chevron one I drew out of my head, but it's not so original. I've seen a lot of chevron prints like this out in the world. 

365patterns chevron print

And I posted earlier that I got to try a Cintiq. It makes my iPad look like a toy.  You can actually see where the pen will drop, and it works with whatever software is on your computer (i.e. Illustrator in my case). The friendly guys at the Wacom booth gave me a new nib to fix my bamboo pen, and I asked them about why the nibs were so thick. Turns out, this restriction is Apple's fault. They are super-secretive about their hardware and the minimum width for styli is 5mm. Mike was using a Windows tablet running Manga Studio to create this week's Penny Arcade Studio. 

This hobby is fantastic and I'm so happy I've found a way to get back into art. However it's getting expensive, so I've added ads to the blog and am gradually stepping up the merchandise. All proceeds will go back into art. 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

PAX update

I'm here at PAX Prime without a good Internet connection, but I'm keeping up the patterns nonetheless. (I'll have to backpost a few.)

Today I visited the Wacom booth and tried out a Cintiq. It's so much better than the iPad. It recognizes pen pressure, and you can see where your pencil will go. Now I just need to save about $2000...