Thinking ‘Outside’ the Box

Abstract Pattern + Overlapping Boxes. Time to Experiment!

Outside of the Box: A Pattern Experiment


It has been AGES since I’ve shared with you one of my experiments. So today I thought I’d show you how I played around and built out this layered pattern.

I’ve decided to call the method I used to build out the pattern my outside of the box technique. I know, super cheesy, but that’s me.

I started by creating a digital painting using overlapping layers of dots in Adobe Photoshop. I used brushes by Kyle T. Webster. I love them and plan on trying out some of his other brush packs soon. Continue reading “Thinking ‘Outside’ the Box”

Hey Fishy, Fishy! Making A Pattern Using Public Domain Images


In my very first post I highlighted how much I love the New York Public Library’s digital collection. It is a great source of inspiration for pattern designers (and history lovers too)!

Today I thought I’d show you how I used one of the collection’s public domain images in a pattern.


Hey Fishy, Fishy! Making a Pattern Using Public Domain Images

Continue reading “Hey Fishy, Fishy! Making A Pattern Using Public Domain Images”

History Forward: The Mississippi River’s Ribbons of Color

Title image for pattern inspired by Mississippi River

I’m not a huge fan of Pinterest, but every now and then I look through what people are posting to find inspiration. The other day I was looking at old maps, and came across a unique and quite colorful one. It was made for the Army Corps of Engineers by Harold N. Fink in 1944. Rather than creating several maps to show how the Mississippi River’s course changed over time, Fink used a collection of colorful ribbons to highlight the changes all on one map.

The map inspired me to make a new pattern. See my process below: Continue reading “History Forward: The Mississippi River’s Ribbons of Color”


No Fill, No LIne,...No Problem! Throw out the rules...give it a try. Maybe you'll create a pattern that sings!


Today’s experiment is all about rule breaking. For this pattern I threw out one of the basic rules of building a pattern in Illustrator and ended-up, I think, making something that is quite beautiful.

So what rule did I break? I didn’t put a no fill, no line box behind my pattern before I dragged it to the swatches panel!!

Wait, what? Continue reading “NO FILL, NO LINE? NO PROBLEM!”