Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Elizabeth Olwen: Vintage Fuchsias

Elizabeth Olwen is a Toronto-based surface designer. Inspired by pastoral beauty, nature in its most playful forms, folklore, and romance, Elizabeth’s work is driven by the desire to leave something beautiful behind with every step she takes. Her work is really awesome, especially her patterns,check out her portfolio here!!

Llew Mejia: Fuchsia Birds

Decided to try something a bit different with this post, and do some Mexican folk art styles. Part of my family lives next to an entire area that is just packed with folk art in Mexico and I feel like it really had an impact on me when I was younger. When I first started drawing a lot of what I did was just freestyle brushstrokes and embellishments, which were inspired by folk art from that area. So this was getting back to my roots of drawing.

I had a lot of fun making this one and it works as a horizontal pattern only, and also as a placed graphic. I decided to include the repeat in black and white. The rest is in color, tried to replicate some older art, love it or leave it.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Lindsay Nohl : Under a microscope


Today's pattern has a little bit of a twist to it. For some reason I was stuck thinking about microscopic organisms all day today. It was just one of those things that stuck in the back of my mind. Do you know when you un-focus your eyes and just stare into space --- then little spots swim across your vision?

I was thinking about those. Those little tiny floaty things.

Then I made this pattern. It's a very pretty flower on it's own and though my first intentions were to show them as they were, in a cluster, I started drawing other things and just went with it.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Natalie Northrup: Hydrangea Stamping

This week we have Natalie Northrup joining us, check out her portfolio as well as other links, she's great!

Natalie is a New York based artist and surface designer currently working at Creatures of Comfort, and used to live in Minneapolis ( she studied with Lindsay!!)  her website is  and she collaborates on patterns with the artist Brian Severns (  under the name Pinholelantern  ( 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Llew Mejia: Hydrangea PJ's

This weeks flower is one of my Ma's favorite flower and we always had heaps of them growing all around our front yard, they are deceiving flowers because I always thought from far away they looked like one large sphere flower, but they are just a cluster of a billion micro flowers.

I got a lil girly on this weeks pattern, wanted to experiment a bit, just did some pencil sketches of the Hydrangea, and tossed them up, confetti stylez. This one I think should be on some kid's pajamas or something of that nature, trying to broaden my range a little bit, hope you all enjoy!

Monday, September 17, 2012

101 Florals : Clusters


Happy Monday! This weekend was a crazy one. For some reason it felt LONG. Really, really long. When I got home from manning the gallery on Saturday night I went to lunds and bought myself some flowers. They weren't Hydrangeas like the ones I've drawn for today's pattern, but a dozen roses. Bright Orange-pink ones. On sale.

Because I deserve them. Then, because I couldn't help myself, I bought roses for everyone else I was going to see that night. Yellow roses, orange roses, pink roses, peach roses. Llew and I once went to a psychic -- (which, now that I think about it, seems like a long time ago) who told me I need to buy flowers for myself more often.

I've remembered that ever since and I've made a point to get myself flowers at least once a month. I wish they lasted longer. I suppose that's why they make silk flowers. So you can have something a little more permanent brightening your day.


Anyway, speaking of permanence. I did this whole pattern with ink and no pencil. Just one group of sketches with a brush pen. Just one whole page of plant parts with no stopping. It was therapeutic. Here they are! Loads and loads of Hydrangeas!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Elena Boils: Yellow Glory

This week we have Elena Boils joining us, she has great, unique, work that reminds me of older lithograph prints. Here's a small bit of info about her and you should all check out her portfolio online!

Elena grew up in Mexico City, but has since moved to London where she is now a freelance illustrator, after graduating from the University College Falmouth.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Llew Mejia:Larva,Pupa,Imago

Morning Glorys are pretty nostalgic for me, my parents had an overgrown fence being crushed by the weight of them, when I was younger. It's funny that people think they are these nice flowers because they look appealing and have strange blooming habits, but in reality they are an invasive flowering weed. Another interesting thing about this plant is that it is a natural producer of the compound LSA, similar to LSD, the psychedelic hallucinogen, but you have to consume hundreds of seeds to even get there in the first place. Apparently kids were going to stores and buying up morning glory seed packets, and then getting poisoned because the seeds are processed and coated in mercury. 

Either way, coupled with the nostalgia of my old backyard, are the memories of having Cecropia Moth caterpillars living there, so in this pattern I decided to throw in the three stages the moths would undergo. 

I did a couple color ways as well one night time inspired one and the other a day time or morning one.
Hope ya like it!

Monday, September 10, 2012

101 Florals : Good Morning


After spending an hour making lots and lots of icons, and a couple different patterns, I finally scaled back and made something simple. I went with the star-shape and did a bunch of mini Morning Glories as a polkadot.

Today I was playing around with using a new medium called Art Graf Black Carbon. It's a block of black carbon that, when used with a wet brush, turns into ink! It's a nice, portable material to use and I ended up doing quite a few sketches with it before settling on these icons.


Here's how it looks repeated. I wish I had some sheets that look like this!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Tania Talbot: Dreamy Calla

Tania Talbot is a Philadelphia based illustrator and designer. She was inspired by the classic beauty of the cali a lily and the way its traditionally used in formal arrangements and bouquets. Its interesting silhouette created interesting shapes for me to play with. 

Check out Tania's portfolio site for more work!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Llew Mejia: Classy Calla Lily

 I wanted to do a more sophisticated type of pattern, something with a more "adult" feel, like it could go in someones nicely furnished bedroom as a wallpaper. This pattern took me a long time to figure out because the tile just kept getting bigger and bigger and wouldn't fit into itself, which eventually was solved.

 Calla's have a home decor feel to them, people always buy rubber ones for their houses so they can put them in cylinder vases and show off that, yes I can't grow plants, but at least I can buy fake ones and pretend that I really care about taking care of a living thing. Either way this pattern was a good change of pace for me and after my rant I hope you all still enjoy it!

Monday, September 3, 2012

101Florals : Greys

A Detail

It's a three-day weekend! We've got a whole day left to enjoy!
It's unseasonably warm these days in Minneapolis and though I should be celebrating the remaining days of summer, I'm actually looking forward to the cool days of fall.

My wardrobe is stuck somewhere between the weird tank tops and short shorts that I had been sporting, and the too-many-layers situation I like to bring on when I start to see the leaves falling. I woke up today and when I looked outside, I noticed the majority of the trees outside my window are already turning yellow and leaves have covered the windshield of my car.

So! With that, I headed to an autumn flavored color palette. I figure I might as well usher in the cool weather with some grey, mustard, teal and neutrals. Now that I think of it, I just went out and bought a couple outfits in those exact colors...hmmm.

The full repeat pattern

With fall comes all of the other things I love. Like school. I begin teaching a pattern and product design course at the College of Visual Arts in St Paul on Wednesday and soon I'll be teaching a hands-on patterns class at MCAD. That, and I've got a lot of other fun things to look forward to as I get further into fall. Back into the groove, right?

For now, I'm running through all of my favorite types of patterns and trying new things. I think this Calla Lily pattern worked out well for me. I'm thinking of trying something a little different next time! Happy Fall, everyone. And Enjoy the holiday!