Repeat Downbeat: Sun, Sand, and Good Times

Sand,-Sun-and-Fun_Pattern-Observer

(L) Pattern by Molly Vizes (R) Pattern by Amanda Rouse Letscher

I’ve been thinking about the stories that we tell through our print and pattern work for quite some time. This seems to be a theme (concept) I cannot get away from, although I confess that most of my work is abstract and doesn’t tell much of a story. But, perhaps out of admiration, I am obsessed with other designer’s work that tells a story and how the perfect pairing of motifs can create a deep connection with consumers. It amazes me that by simply adding a 2nd or 3rd motif to our art, us designers can tell a much more memorable story for those who are viewing our work. Each motif is a new character in our pattern story, allowing us to go deeper into the narrative we are creating. I recognize that I might be over-thinking this, but the concept amazes me and this week I looked at all the beautiful work in our #patternobserver Instagram feed and pulled the patterns that I thought successfully told a story of sun, sand, and good times.

Here are just a few of my favorites:

This pattern from Molly Vizes immediately caught my eye. The colorful umbrellas, beach towels, and bathing suits quickly tell the story of a fun filled day at the beach. We think of sun, sand, good times with friends, and the chance to dive into a good book. The viewer immediately reflects on a fun experience they had at the beach, or a fun time they hope to have in the future. Molly does a great job of telling stories through her illustrations and pattern designs! I encourage you to follow her journey on Instagram, @mollyvizesi.

Textile Design Lab member Amanda Rouse Letscher also does a wonderful job with telling stories through her design work. What I love about this pattern is that it is so simple, yet the pairing of these two beautifully illustrated motifs tells such a clear story. As Amanda said in her description, “Agave + lime = Party time.” Without the addition of the limes, this would have been an agave pattern. Or without the addition of the agave plants, this would have been a lime pattern, but by combining these two motifs Amanda is telling a more descriptive story. Check out more of Amanda’s beautiful wok on Instagram, @rousehousedesign.

(L) Pattern by Carolina Diaz (R) Pattern by Melanie Miles

(L) Pattern by Carolina Diaz (R) Pattern by Melanie Miles

This design from Carolina Diaz is anything but simple. However, it lays out a beautiful story of a day in the tropics. A day of exploring tropical fruit, flowers, fish, and the bounty of the region. Her use of washy, textural watercolors is the perfect match for this sun-bleached beach scene. And it helps to bring the viewer into this relaxed, tropical state of mind. Carolina has a passion for these tropical beach scenes and her Instagram account is filled with her beautiful interpretation of the tropics. Check out more @carolinadiazb.

Last but not least, these beautifully illustrated motifs from Melanie Miles are bound to make anyone smile. They immediately sweep up the viewer and transport them to a time when they may have been enjoying these whimsically illustrated goodies, or a time when they hope to! We think of birthdays, parties, tea time with friends, a fun outing, or a special occasion, and it feels so good. Check out more of Melanie’s beautiful work on Instagram @melaniemilesdesign.

Now what about you? What story are you telling in your work? If you’re not sure, I have just the solution for you. Explore your story by taking our free 5-day Design Challenge. Get started here.

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