Create a Repeating Pattern in Illustrator using Texture

Mel Armstrong, Illustrator, Pattern Addict & Teacher

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12 Videos (58m)
    • Welcome

    • Materials

    • Project Overview

    • Gathering texture

    • Processing texture in Photoshop

    • Processing texture in Illustrator (Live Trace)

    • How to create an illustrator texture brush

    • Applying texture to icons

    • Create a Half Drop Repeat with pattern maker

    • Create a Half Drop Repeat Manually

    • Apply your design to a mockup

    • Wrapping up!

11 students are watching this class

About This Class


Have you ever wanted to create designs in Adobe Illustrator that have texture?  Have you tried, but struggled to make it work without your computer going into meltdown because it can’t cope with the massive file size?  I like creating patterns in Photoshop, but a lot of clients require vector designs so it's always good to know how to use both Photoshop & Illustrator to create patterns. 

Texture adds dimension and perspective to what might otherwise be a flat design.

 In this class I’m going to show you how to create texture in Adobe Photoshop, then apply it to designs in Adobe Illustrator keeping the design completely vectorised.

You will learn: 

  • How to find texture in the environment around you
  • How to process your texture images in Photoshop & Illustrator
  • How to apply your texture to icons in Illustrator
  • How to create a texture brush in Illustrator
  • How to create a half-drop repeat in Illustrator
  • How to apply your pattern to a mockup in Photoshop (with smart objects)

For your class project you will show us how you gathered your texture, the before and after of your texture, and the before and after of your pattern design with texture. 

I'll also provide you with a free mockup to display your new design on as well as some free texture photos that you can use for your own projects.


  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Camera (can be a smart phone)

110 of 111 students recommendSee All

Very nice class Mel! Plenty of useful tips and very well explained! Thank you very much for sharing!
Love it. I can't wait for the next one...
I've been making patterns with Adobe Illustrator CS4 for several years but I learned several new tricks by watching this class. I've never played around too much with textures so that was my real reason for watching this class. I've used the 'live trace' feature many times but never thought of making the expanded objects into a compound path so that was very useful information. I also had never figured out how to do a half drop repeat in Illustrator so I am very happy to finally know how to do that. I really appreciated the fact that Mel explained how to do it manually, which is the way you need to do it if you have an older version of Illustrator like I have. Very useful information and clearly explained. My only complaint is that being slightly hard of hearing, I sometimes had difficulty understanding Mel's soft voice. It really helped when I decided to watch the videos using headphones.





Mel Armstrong

Illustrator, Pattern Addict & Teacher

I love drawing! If I don't have a sketchbook with me I panic. It's an addiction that started a few years ago after trying to find some fabric for my son. I couldn't find what I wanted so decided to design my own and then somehow fell into a new career illustrating and pattern designing.

In 2016 I won the Make it in Design scholarship (2016) and it changed my life. I signed up with art agent Advocate Art where I license designs to all sorts of products such as baby products, sho...

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