Mixed Media Pattern Design - Just Mary Style!

Oooh I am having fun with this!!!  I have been working on a class called the Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design put on by the very lovely Rachel Taylor and Beth Nichols.  I was really struggling with the class - most of the designs are done or heavily manipulated on the computer.  I am simply NOT a digital designer.  My heart sings when my hands get messy.  I am called to play with paint and canvas, not a mousepad or illustrator wand.  BUT, the content and the way pattern is used really does speak to me. So I looked for an out of the box way to marry traditional surface pattern design with my mixed media love affair.  And I think I found it!  When I do a painting, I always start with a background.  The finished work will normally have some type of central image or theme to it.  But the background is pure texture and pattern.  So why not carve a "Surface Pattern" out of my "Mixed Media" background? With this in mind I pulled out sections from some of my finished work, and from some backgrounds that don't have completed central images yet.  In the class we have been taught how to make pattern boards.  So here are my out of the box Pattern Boards - Just Mary style!!

Zeroing In On My Style...

Towards the end of last year I started an e-course called the Art & Business of Surface Pattern Design.  This was put on by the very talented Rachael Taylor and Beth Nicholls.  One of the key things we focused on was really zeroing in on what your signature style is.  I must admit I was kind of skeptical at first - mostly not believing I actually HAD as signature style.  Turns out I do! One of the exercises that really helped me define it was creating a Pattern Love Board.  What I learned was that my style generally has elements of 4 things - Swirls, Curvy Silhouettes, Floral, or Brightly Colored Symmetrical patterns.  Below is my board - I hope you have as much fun looking at it as I did creating it!