florals

FolioFocus Week 3 Roundup: Mum’s the word!

Last week our Spring 2018 FolioFocus classmates created amazing and adorable cards and gifting designs for Mother’s Day.

Soft & pretty Mother's Day Card Presentation By  Bénédicte B Barrett

Soft & pretty Mother's Day Card Presentation By Bénédicte B Barrett

FolioFocus: Student Gallery

Check out a preview of Week 3’s submissions below; visit the gallery to see more of the fantastic work they created:

https://www.flickr.com/groups/foliofocusspring2018/pool/with/39609701264/

Cute 'Llama Mama' Design By Lisa Norris

Each designer’s own perspective of Mother’s Day is diverse and distinct. Whether it's pretty florals or the cutest animals, these designs are just adorable!

To explore more talented designers and inspiring art, follow us on Instagram and don't forget to sign up to our newsletter.

Thanks for stopping by!

FolioFocus Week 1 Showcase

Last week, our popular portfolio building workshop, FolioFocus, started another round. We kicked off with Florals as a theme, complete with trend insights and inspiration to get our classmates going. WOW did they nail it! 

Here are a few of the beautiful submissions to our FolioFocus Showcase Gallery - you really must see the full gallery here FolioFocus Gallery!

Follow along and watch our classmates on our Instagram account, or join the current FolioFocus session to take part.

Designer Spotlight: Julie Harrison

HELLO, PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF:

My name is Julie Harrison and I’m a Graphic Designer and Surface Pattern Designer from beautiful Brisbane in Australia. I am the sole owner and designer of Pattern Play Studio (www.patternplaystudio.com), and it is my goal to design beautiful, bright, modern and playful pattern designs for both fabric and paper.

HAVE YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO BE SURFACE PATTERN DESIGNER/ILLUSTRATOR?

Growing up I was always creative and Art was my favourite subject at school. I started my career as a Graphic Designer in 2003. I had not heard of the term Surface Pattern Design until about 2009 when I discovered the excellent Print & Pattern blog by Bowie Style. That was when I had my creative ‘lightbulb’ moment. I knew EXACTLY the type of art and design I wanted to create, and what industry I wanted to work in.

At the time, I was working at a global Engineering company as a Senior Graphic Designer and, although I enjoyed designing for big, exciting projects and working on branding campaigns, I was not liking the corporate office environment anymore. I knew I needed to keep designing, but also knew it was time to switch industries. I made the decision in 2015 to make the shift to Surface Pattern Design. But I did it sensibly by changing to part-time work at first. This gave me one full day a week, plus nights and weekends to work towards my dream.

WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY/WEEK LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?

I love starting my day sitting at my desk with a tea or coffee in one hand, a pen and paper to write my ‘to do’ list in the other. I usually catch up on social media first and then check on my emails - all before 7:30 am. I am happy to say I am fully self-employed now and I love working from my little studio space. It’s been a year since I left my previous position and I have not looked back!

I am consulting in graphic design to support me financially, and my work and schedule is varied and flexible, which is great because I can focus and allocate time to developing designs for my surface pattern design folio. So, right now you could say my typical day consists of designing, creating, learning, researching, drawing, painting, completing administration tasks, phone meetings with clients and printers and planning marketing activities for Pattern Play Studio. There is always something to do.

IF YOU COULD GIVE YOUR 10 YEARS YOUNGER SELF ONE KEY PIECE OF ADVICE OR AN INSIGHT, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

Everyone says this and it’s true - be prepared to work hard and put yourself out of your comfort zone. It won’t come easily. Enjoy the process and the journey as you go because it takes time and you need to continue to keep searching for new opportunities every day and be brave in chasing those opportunities down. I’m still working on it! Also, relationships are the key. Work recommendations will come from people you know, so it’s important to treat people well and be easy to work with.

WHEN YOU FEEL STUCK OR IN A DESIGN RUT, HOW DO YOU GET YOURSELF OUT OF IT AND BACK ON TRACK?

I just try to give it time and try not to freak out. I acknowledge I have a creative block or that I’m in a design rut and I try to do something completely different. That might be watching a good movie, reading some creative magazines or even baking a cake. Or I’ll tackle the dreaded paperwork and sort out my tax receipts. That’s enough to make me reach for a paint brush or my mouse and mac again!

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN TOOLS?

I love my uni pens and sharpies  and of course my wacom tablet.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN PROCESS? 

I start with quick sketches, research the subject matter, investigate colour palettes and by then I’m usually itching to get on my mac. Or if I’m painting, I set my desk up, get my paints ready, paper towel, fresh water and clean brushes. I need to have a tidy workspace in the beginning, but it sure doesn’t stay that way during the ‘creative’ process!

My favourite programs are both Illustrator and photoshop. I think it’s good to be skilled in using both programs efficiently. My artwork varies between flat, graphic and bold vector designs to bright, playful watercolours and paper cut collages – usually always florals! I also appreciate the workflow efficiency I get using my ipad pro and Procreate is a great app too.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN PROJECTS TO DATE?

I am still relatively new to the surface pattern design industry so the projects I’m proud of to-date have all been through my own efforts and to aid in promoting Pattern Play Studio.

As part of my project experience in the world of surface pattern design, I’ve designed patterns for textiles and have used the fabulous services of Next State Print in Melbourne, Australia.

Infact, I recently upholstered a 1960’s Wrightbuilt wooden arm chair with a watercolour floral I designed and that Next State printed on their beautiful Organic Panama canvas. That chair sits in the corner of my studio and it puts a smile on my face every time I look at it. It’s comfy to sit in as I flick through design magazines too!

I haven’t had any artwork licensed yet. I mentioned in the beginning that this industry will take time, and I’m prepared to continue to work hard to make it a reality.

WHO ARE YOUR DREAM CLIENTS OR WHAT IS YOUR DREAM PROJECT?

I want to design for both paper and fabric. So to start with paper, I would love to design stationery for Madison Park Greetings or gift wrap for The Gift Wrap Company. Then the fabric dream would be to design a range of fabrics for Wyndham fabrics or Cloud9 or even to design for Marimekko. Why not aim high? I’m a firm believer in dreams.

THERE HAS BEEN AN ART SUPPLY SANCTION IMPOSED AND DESIGNERS ARE ONLY ALLOWED TO POSSESS 3 ITEMS/TOOLS, WHAT DO YOU CHOOSE?

Seriously hard to choose just three. But if I had to choose…Pen, Paper, Mac.

WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION?

Oh…good question. I love foraging in old flea markets or antique stores. I flick through old books or home and decorating magazines, and sometimes I look at Pinterest. I’m very mindful to get off-line a lot, however, and do my own research and think of my own solutions. I notice patterns in nature, find inspiration in my travel adventures and the photos I take and remember vividly my childhood and the bright bold florals of the 1970’s.

WHO WOULD YOU SAY THE GREATEST DESIGNER IS?

William Morris, without a doubt.

WHEN I'M LONG GONE:

I hope to be remembered as a kind, friendly, and genuine person who was always supportive and ready to help lend a hand or an ear. And someone who also happened to be an amazing designer.

Where you can find me:

Website: www.patternplaystudio.com

Instagram: @patternplaystudio

Twitter: @patternplayart   (patternplay studio was too long…..)

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/patternplaystudio

FolioFocus Week 3 Roundup!

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW! This week was truly amazing! You really ROCKED IT!

Here are a few designs from Facebook and Instagram and our Gallery can be found here: https://www.flickr.com/groups/foliofocusspring17/

Designer Spotlight: Lisa Kirkbride

HELLO, PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF:

Hi, I’m Lisa Kirkbride, an illustrator and pattern designer living in sunny Whitley Bay in the north east of England with my husband and young daughter. I’m fortunate enough to enjoy stunning sea views, and whilst bracing, I love where I live.
My background is in graphic design and this is reflected in my designs which are vibrant and fun. I'm inspired by Scandinavian design and 1950s vintage fabrics and wall coverings. I’m driven by my love for creating patterns – especially florals – while exploring new eye catching colour combinations.

I am a member of Finch and Foxglove art collective and we exhibited together for the first time this May at Surtex in New York. It was a great experience and opportunity to get my work out there in front of dream clients. In 2017 I am showing at Printsource in January and Surtex again in May, something that would be much harder to achieve without being part of the collective which is a great support and is invaluable in sharing the costs and workload of exhibiting.
I’d describe myself as a book lover, doodler, collector of letterpress type and a stationery addict with an unhealthy obsession for art materials. I was recently ranked in the top 8 MIID Printsource 2016 competition, reached the semi-finals of the The Global Talent Search 2016 and have showcased in a number of industry publications.

IF YOU COULD GIVE YOUR 10 YEARS YOUNGER SELF ONE KEY PIECE OF ADVICE OR AN INSIGHT, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

Simply to stop doing things that you don’t love and remember that shy bairns get nowt! That’s two isn’t it, I always like to give a bit extra!

WHEN YOU FEEL STUCK OR IN A DESIGN RUT, HOW DO YOU GET YOURSELF OUT OF IT AND BACK ON TRACK?

I find the best thing to do is to get away from my desk, go for a walk or a run along the seafronts - basically get outside and clear my head. A change of scenery often unlocks new ideas and I find I’m much more productive once I get back.

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN TOOLS?

I’m a big fan of Illustrator and have a Wacom Cintiq which I love. This year I treated myself to an iPad Pro and pencil which is slowly becoming a favourite too, but sometimes you can’t beat a twig and some ink or a sharpie!

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN PROCESS? FAVOURITE APPS AND PROGRAMS

At the start of every project I will research the subject matter, look at trends and what appeals to me and my target audience, and draw, draw, draw. I like to use Graphik fine liners and Sharpies to sketch and brainstorm ideas. When I’m at a stage where I think I have what I need, I’ll scan my images and start to create my illustrations or patterns (Adobe Capture is pretty cool for scanning and importing your art into Illustrator as a vector file).
I mainly work in Illustrator on the Cintiq (I find the pen on the screen far more intuitive than a mouse and it was a great investment). However lately I’m using the iPad more and more. I have

Procreate which works brilliantly with the Apple Pencil but my preference is Adobe Draw as I can export my layered, vector files into Illustrator and share colour libraries across projects. It’s a different way of working for me and I’m just getting to the stage where I can see it could save me time and it could be a useful tool to keep me productive on the go.
I often mockup my patterns on to actual products in Photoshop as it’s very rewarding and I enjoy seeing how my designs or patterns will work on “real life” products. Experimenting with the scale of the pattern can also be a useful exercise and combining complementary patterns is really fun too and gives an insight into how they could be used together.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE DESIGN PROJECTS TO DATE? 

One of my favourite projects so far is illustrations for packaging for a candle company. I worked on labels for flavours such as strawberry's and cream and chocolate fudge, make your own candle kits and also some high end labels and boxes for their premium range.

WHO ARE YOUR DREAM CLIENTS OR WHAT IS YOUR DREAM PROJECT? 

I really enjoy making patterns so my dream project would be a fabric collection (probably florals!) or a stationery range to satisfy the stationery lover in me. I am a little obsessed in mocking up my designs onto journals or bedding as you can probably tell by my Instagram feed.

THERE HAS BEEN AN ART SUPPLY SANCTION IMPOSED AND DESIGNERS ARE ONLY ALLOWED TO POSSESS 3 ITEMS/TOOLS, WHAT DO YOU CHOOSE?

That is really hard. I suppose my mac, iPad (which I could use to create with and it would also double up as a scanner) and a sharpie!

WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION?

For inspiration, I look at the scenery around me, I love flora and fauna so there’s always something to see as the seasons change. I look out for trends in shops, visit galleries and Pinterest and Instagram are great - but I need to be disciplined with them as time can fly.

WHO WOULD YOU SAY THE GREATEST DESIGNER IS?

Scandinavian design really appeals to me as I love the bold colours and the very graphic, high contrast style. Anything from Finnish company Marimekko is amazing and the bold, folk-like patterns of Josef Frank are really inspiring.

When I'm long gone, I hope people remember me for making colourful designs that make people smile.

Where you can find me:

facebook.com/LisaKirkbrideDesigns

www.instagram.com/lisa_kirkbride_designs

www.lisakirkbride.com

FolioFocus Week 2 Roundup!

What a wonderful week of sweet greetings and what beautiful designs!

Here are a few from Instagram and our Gallery can be found here: flickr.com/groups/foliofocusaw16/

Here's looking forward to another pattern filled week :)