Thursday, August 30, 2012

Anika Starmer: Cosmos All-Over

> This week Anika Starmer is joining us, I believe she has the most accurate portrayal of what this flower looks like in real life, here is a lil bit about her! Anika lives and works in Maryland as web designer by day and an artist/illustrator by night. She studied Graphic Design at UMBC, but has always enjoyed creating art by hand: drawing, painting, collaging, etc.. Anika likes to learn new things, whether a new painting style, or Photoshop technique, and is always trying something new. You can read more about her art experiments on her blog (

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Llew Mejia: Cosmic Cosmos Flowers

Cosmos flowers are awesome, although to me they kind of resemble other flowers we have done, they are unique in the way their petals get pointy at the end, its a nice lil shape. For this pattern I really wanted to focus on doing an entire pattern with just the pen tool, and I don't think it turned out too bad, although it took me was like watching any Lord of the Rings movie on repeat...

 I thought maybe there was a mystical reason for naming this plant Cosmos, but apparently it was just because all the petals were equally proportionate to each other and the center of the flower. The name of the flower stems from the Greek word Cosmos meaning harmony, pretty interesting I guess, but because I am ignorant I made it into an occult thing instead and just threw some eyes on there!

Similar to the Googly Eyes Gardener from SNL, if you like Christopher Walkin, (which if you don't, I can't talk to you any longer), then it's worth a watch!

Monday, August 27, 2012

101 Florals : Cosmos, Inked.


Tonight I was getting ready for my Tools of the Trade Class at MCAD and I got lost in messing around with ink. I figured since I was already covered in black ink, I might as well keep going, so I made my pattern tonight with the tools I had handy.
I love that school. Also - I can't believe that it 's starting already.
Where did the summer go? I'm not sure.

Either way, it's nice to break out the ink and do some florals by hand this time.
I did a page of icons, scanned them, cleaned them up and tossed them around. I like how random they are.


Here's what it looks like repeated!

And here's what it looks like before all the coloring and tossing!


Wish me luck for the first day of school! I'm in my 9th year of teaching. I'm not sure how that happened either, but hey, at least I'm headed into a fun semester.
Keeping busy, that's for sure.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Meg Hunt: Quilty Cacti

The guest this week is the fabulous Meg Hunt, a very talented illustrator as well as someone I think stylistically has proven herself again and again. Her work is awesome and check out her site for more. Here's a lil tidbit about her:

Meg is a jack of all trades, but currently works as an illustrator. Her goal is to fill the world with her creations, and make people happy in the process. She wants to explore and try new things; it's her goal to branch out beyond editorial and into the living breathing world we inhabit. One day she would like to illustrate gift cards and childrens' books and stationery and textiles and packaging and oh, all sorts of things.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Llew Mejia: Nopalitos!

  Prickly pears as they are commonly called in English are a Mexican delicacy and I am sure they are used in any other area they are found. But I have fond memories of my mother de-spining the flat oar-like leaves of the Nopal(as it is called in Spanish) and thinly slicing the the leaves in strips. Then mixing it with various other ingredients to make a very mucousy salad that tasted like heaven but felt like you were chewing on puke.

Either way this plant is nostalgic to me, and I decided to go real simple/abstract with this pattern, letting the textures kind of make the distinguishing factor behind plant and background. It was fun just free styling a pattern this way, and I think I am going to make more of these types of patterns in the future. The repeat has this weird pulsating feeling to it too, real trippy like.

 Stay tuned kids for tomorrow we have one of my personal favorite artists, Meg Hunt joining us!


Monday, August 20, 2012

101 Florals : Ouch. Prickly Pear.


I just got back from a trip to the Virgin Islands, where I saw my fair share of cacti growing off of the rocky cliffs.

My friend Atom made a point to try and gather as much plant life as he could while we were there (not a good idea) so he could take it home with him to good old Minnesota. (This was, of course, after repeated warnings that customs would get him on his way back in.)

I remember after a couple days of gathering seeds and little plant cuttings - we went on a guided tour where the guide told us there were poisonous plants all over the island of St. Thomas.

This didn't stop him from continuing to gather specimens til the end of our trip.


Which he promptly ditched at the airport after seeing how intense the customs guys were!

I chose to focus more on the cacti-element than the actual prickly pear.
Here's an endless field of pointy cacti.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Teagan White: Nostalgic Magnolias

Magnolias were always my favorite trees when I was a kid. I remember being disappointed almost every year when a frost came overnight just as the flowers started to bloom and killed them, so that instead of those nice fleeting couple of weeks of beautiful giant flowers in the tree in my neighbor's yard, I'd be faced with a couple of weeks of walking across soggy brown petals plastered to the sidewalk on my way to school. I did a little bit of research on magnolias before starting on this pattern, and learned from wikipedia that magnolias are really really ancient plants and were actually first pollinated by beetles because bees and other pollinators hadn't evolved yet. For more beautiful work by Teagan check her out here!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Llew Mejia: Waxy Leaved

Magnolias are weird they look really solid, like they are made of a mold of melted plastic, or some sort of flower you would purchase to put in your house that looks like a museum, " Ah ah ah, don't touch, that is the delicate Magnolia, it cost me blah blah blah...". I like it a lot though, the stamen of the Magnolia flower looks like a candle flame or a little lantern to me so I drew it like it was emanating some light to attract insects. Either way I think they are the best of the flowering trees.

Monday, August 13, 2012

101 Florals : Magnolia Jumper

Colorway one of my magnolia ditzy pattern (calico)

Let me tell you a story...

It's very seldom I get a chance to go shopping. I mean, actually go shopping, like, in a real store. These days it's been hard to find the time to go out for a couple hours and just browse.

So. To combat that, I spend a lot of time putting all sorts of things in various digital shopping carts, amassing hundreds of dollars of things, then closing my browser window. It's some kind of fake shop-therapy, I think.

The most dangerous times are when I am actually near my purse and I'm doing these things, -- or if some stores make it easy to pay with paypal. Then it's all over.
One time in particular, I was on one of my favorite clothing sites and saw a kind of harem-pant style floral jumper, I put it in my cart, and before I could talk myself into closing the browser window, I bought it, along with a million other things I shouldn't have.

I don't know how many of you have seen me, but I'm about one foot tall, and I believe that most clothes that you see on the models are built for someone that has a torso that is longer than an inch. So I get this thing in the mail a couple days later, put it on and I look like a cheap circus clown with a saggy top and lumpy knickers.

Now, this would be the colorway of choice if I were to wear a granny night-gown or a floral shoulder-less shirt!

I will now leave you with that thought as you stare into the depths of my ditzy-floral-print. If I ever design a line of jumpers, this would be the pattern I'd want on it.

Here's the original ink drawing I used to make this limited-negative-space pattern!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Zoe Keller: Rippling Asters

Zoe grew up in New York, studied Graphic Design at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore and moved to the Twin Cities in early 2012. She is currently working as a pattern designer and tinkering on her bicycle. Here's a link to her site she does great letterpress work too check it ya'll!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Llew Mejia: "Chinese" Zodiac Aster

This week's pattern is inspired by the Chinese Aster. To me it was an opportunity to get a little more ornamental, and what started as just a few shapes turned into adding a rabbit, and then a snake/dragon type of thing, and finally the Asters themselves. I guess in the end it turned out being more of a meld of Mexican, Norwegian and Chinese folk art styles all blended into one.

Most cultural pattern to date, so cultured. This was also the most monstrous of files because the repeat was so went so slow, it was asking for an execution Office Space style.

Hope you all are having a great week, enjoy!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Temporary Technical Difficulties

Unfortunately Lindsay's pattern will be delayed until she gets back from her vacation in the sunny Caribbean due to low to no internet connection. So for now you must just be patient, but the pattern will be up within the next week or so. So please bear with us in these times of technical difficulties. Thank you.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Erica Sirotich: Carnivorous Cuties

This weeks guest artist is the very talented Erica Sirotich, all the way from San Francisco.She is a freelance illustrator who likes to create images inspired by animals and children. I think it shows because in this pattern it's pretty obvious how cute she made one of the more deadly plants in nature, the pattern definitely belongs in a Golden book.

Erica is a self-taught illustrator, who after going to school for religion, decided that she would rather do art for a living, thanks for joining the winning team! Kind of a spare of the moment decision but I can relate, although I wouldn't be able to tell judging by how clean and crisp all of her linework is in person. She is a human Adobe Illustrator.
Also, you should all check out her shop Cuddlefish Press for more of her lovable work.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Llew Mejia: Hungry Hungry Pitcher Plants

This week was really exciting for me because it was totally my choice flower, the Pitcher Plant! This plant is one of my favorite carnivorous plant species because of the way it is built. It has a colorful top part to attract its prey which depending on the size is anything from small insects to rats and lizards. After the prey slips on the lip of the trap it falls into a digestive fluid ensuring it's demise. Pretty awesome, killa plants.

It's ridiculous the range of habitats these plants live in and even if you live in Minnesota there is the Purple Pitcher Plant . Do yourself some justice and check out the local pitcher plants in your area, You will like the way they look I guarantee it!

Did a couple of color ways and also put it all over a couch for you all to see. Please enjoy.