Featured Designer: Jacqueline Maldonado

I could just gobble up these candy-colored watercolors, couldn’t you?! These dreamy designs are the work of Jacqueline Maldonado, a surface pattern designer and watercolorist currently residing in Long Island. In 2012, Jacqueline took a leap of faith to pursue her art as a full-time endeavor and has been kind enough to share a bit about that journey with us today:


“I’ve always been an artist but I never believed I could actually create for a living. Although I was accepted into the Fine Art program at the Fashion Institute of Technology, believing that I could not survive as a fine artist, I chose instead to study Display & Exhibit Design. After graduation, I began a career in retail as a visual merchandiser. Later, I tried my hand as a floral and holiday display designer and even had a brief stint as real estate agent. I went back to retail and eventually worked my way around the fashion industry until I landed a job working in a high-end wholesale children’s fashion showroom as a brand manager. Although I loved working with fashion and people, I was never fulfilled in any job. I needed to live a more creative life; I needed to create, I needed to paint. I decided to go back to school and earned a BA in Visual Art from Empire State College where I studied one on one with established painters, including Jill Moser (look her up – you won’t be disappointed!). I planned on earning my masters in Art Education, but mid way through my studies, I became pregnant with my now 3 year old daughter. My doctor advised me to refrain from work and school due to a high-risk condition. It was at this time that I began to research ways in which to sell my art online. After all, I had piles of work just laying around collecting dust and I was desperate for income. I had nothing to lose so I began selling on Etsy and POD sites like society6. After a short time, I started to see success, selling my work on products and being accepted as an artist on Deny Designs. In the last three years, I have steadily built my business and feel as if I am living a dream come true. I never thought I could make a good living doing what I love. But I am finding that the more ‘me’ I am in my art and life, the more successful I become. It sounds cliche, but it is true. I spent so much time trying to be whatever I ‘wanted’ to be, whatever I thought would make me successful, when really I should have been following my heart and being who I am all along. I am a painter with a passion for pattern. It’s who I am so it’s who I am choosing to be.”


You can find Jacqueline around the web at jacquelinemaldonado.com, on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Have a wonderful Friday, everyone (and why not bust out those watercolors this weekend?!) 🙂 -Chelsea

At Pattern Observer we strive to help you grow your textile design business through our informative articles, interviews, tutorials, workshops and our private design community, The Textile Design Lab.

Featured Course

More Stories
Found Patterns: Petals