Simple Patterns Prove to be Hard



I carve a new stamp almost every day. At first this seems like a productive way to work and push myself into new territory. But when I sat down to stamp tonight I realized it was just my creative way of avoiding the inevitable. You see, when facing a blank page I suffer from the artistic version of writer’s block. With so many options I am paralyzed by plenty. Should a frog ride a bicycle or a beetle climb a tree? Should I stamp in a narrative or patterned form? Colors of inks and papers…. and I’m still looking at a blank page.

One would think a pattern is the easy way to go. But if you really stop to look at successful patterns; i.e. wall paper, gift wrap, you’ll notice that they look almost random but circle back in a pleasing, rhythmic way.

By the time I realized my interest in textiles and graphic design I was well out of school and I’m learning what must be basics from doing, making mistakes, then doing some more. 

Below is the picture of book I bought for it’s cover, “That Quail, Robert,” (and the fantastic, curious title.) You can see what I’m talking about with how the feathers are repeated, but not in a predictable way. They flow and dance. 

Well, more experimenting (and mistakes) to come!



8 responses »

  1. I LOVE those stamps. The flying animal theme is so neat. I sometimes have that moment of paralysis, but then I just try to push through and realize that if I don’t like whatever I come up with I can scrap it and start over.

  2. Regardless of actual construction, all patterns follow a grid design that determines placement for optimal positioning to achieve a balanced flow. It certainly takes application, effort and some experimentation, but you can see the great results with that feathers cover, where it is done really well. Keep working at it – particularly as your flying animals are so suited!

    • Working with a conscious grid in mind is helpful. Thank you. I think the success comes in not taking the grid to literally so there is still flow.


  3. I am not sure I have a normal response to these stamps – I LOVE THESE new stamps!! Is it normal to likes simple wonderful image the way I do? Maybe? But you just give me a thrill with your lovely new stamps. I do gush occasionally, but I am sincere!

    • Gush away! I love gushing! Thanks E. Funny how they take on a new life when I start to print them in various colors. The sample prints in black (previous posts) are not as fun or emotional.


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