Deer Floral Pattern

Brief

I wanted to create a pattern based on medieval stump work embroidery.

Process

I started this pattern design by drawing out a motif by hand on a sheet of paper using sketches and ideas in my sketchbooks. I then photocopied the design and cut it in half vertically and stuck the pieces back together, the left side on the right and the right on the left. I photocopied this and cut it in the middle horizontally, sticking the top half at the bottom and the bottom half at the top.

Work in process for making a seamless pattern based on deer squirrel and floral motifs

This basic process created a seamless repeating pattern. I filled Spaces in the design with other hand drawn elements. I decided it would make a nice pattern for fabric, so I scanned it in and started to create a digital version using Affinity Designer.

Design

I started with a square shaped canvas 4500px by 4500px. I traced the individual elements using vector pen tools for the main motif.

Vector Illustration elements for a seamless pattern deer squirrel and floral

I created a flattened image of the motif which I divided up using guidelines for the horizontal and vertical middles to create a seamless pattern base. I used this as a template to place the individual vector shapes of the motif in the right positions, using the alignment guide window to duplicate and reflect elements that touched edges. After this I created the extra elements to fill the spaces in the design.

When happy with the placing of the elements I chose a suitable line style and colour scheme and experimented with different background colours. I found it helpful to add an adjustment layer at the top for black and white image to check the values still worked with the colour scheme of the elements and background. My first pattern for this design had no texture as I designed it for use on fabric, which gives it a texture when printed out and it best to be flat colours.

Seamless pattern with deer flowers and squirrels on a blue background

I designed a second version of this pattern in response to a call for promotional art from Serif who make Affinity Designer. In the second version I refined details, changed colours and added gradients and texture.

Motif with deer flowers and squirrel Illustrations created with Affinity Designer

I made a dark background version and a light background version. I also worked into the main motif design to add embroidery stitches by using brushes for Photoshop of different stitch types. It was an interesting challenge to create the look of embroidery.

Motif with deer flowers and squirrel Illustrations created with Affinity Designer with digital embroidery stitches

Close up of motif with deer flowers and squirrel Illustrations created with Affinity Designer with digital embroidery stitches

Result

Affinity accepted my work and used it in their campaign which I am very grateful and happy about. I leaned a lot from making this design and plan to create more patterns in the future.