Watercolor Meets Surface Pattern Design | Jenny Lee | Skillshare

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Watercolor Meets Surface Pattern Design

teacher avatar Jenny Lee, Hello Brio Studio

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Intro to Watercolor and Surface Pattern Design


    • 2.

      Gathering Materials


    • 3.

      Motif Brainstorm


    • 4.



    • 5.

      Painting with Watercolor


    • 6.

      Digitizing and Vectorizing Your Motifs


    • 7.

      Illustrator Basics for Surface Pattern Design


    • 8.

      Basic Repeating Pattern Types


    • 9.

      Creating Repeating Patterns in Illustrator 1


    • 10.

      Creating Repeating Patterns in Illustrator 2


    • 11.

      Thanks! Remember to Upload Your Project!


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About This Class

Follow along with designer and illustrator Jenn Coyle of Hello Brio as she creates seamless repeating patterns with a watercolor touch. Interested in watercolor? Interested in surface pattern design? This course is perfect for you! You will learn the basics of digitizing and vectorizing watercolor and creating repeating patterns with a beautiful handmade look in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. Have fun with your pattern motifs: branch outside of florals and nature and make silly patterns with things like breakfast foods, robots, monsters, or whatever your heart desires! By the end, you’ll have a unique surface pattern design or a suite of designs to add to your portfolio.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Jenny Lee

Hello Brio Studio


I'm Jenny, a Philadelphia-based artist and writer. Wife, mom of 2. Energetic INTJ.

I'm a hand lettering artist who loves iPad stuff. When I'm not working, you can find me reading or journaling. I'm indoorsy.

Let's connect! Get lettering inspiration on Instagram, subscribe to my YouTube videos, follow along with posts about minimalism, or take my Skillshare classes.

Fun facts: I have a bachelor's degree in Interior Design; I never used it. I'm mildly allergic to peanuts, but I eat peanut butter all the time. Fueled by burritos. Things that rock my socks: brunch, running, embroidery, biohacking, and atmospheric indie music.

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1. Intro to Watercolor and Surface Pattern Design: Hey everyone. I'm Jenn Coyle and I'm a designer and illustrator. In this surface pattern design class, we're going to be going outside the box in a couple of different ways. First, we're going to be creating our motifs with watercolor. So that'll give it a really fun look. We're also going to be thinking of motifs that branch outside the traditional surface pattern design repeats such as florals and cactuses and things like that and we're going to be talking about motifs that you really love. So if you're a really big fan of cookies, you could do a fun cookies surface pattern design, or you could do something that's themed around a holiday or maybe just the hobby that you have, like gardening or cooking. So this class is going to be a quick overview of watercolor basics and then we're going to take those watercolor doodles or what I like to call water doodles, scan them into our computer and then digitize them in Photoshop and Illustrator. Next we're going to take those digitized motifs and creative a fun surface pattern design that you can use for anything that you want. This is a really great class to take to build on your skills and expand your portfolio and try different mediums. So I really hope you guys enjoy the class. 2. Gathering Materials: Before we dive into the project, I just want to talk about some of the materials you're going to need. First, you're going to need a pencil in order to help you to sketch out your motifs. You may also need these black inking markers. These are Copic Multiliners. They come in a huge range of sizes from 0.03-1. These are really good waterproof markers, really good quality. You don't have to get these brand of markers. It's just that these are my favorite. There are a lot of other inking markers out there that are waterproof that'll work well with watercolor. You're going to need some paper towels in order to clean off your brushes. You're going to need a watercolor palette. This is my favorite because it folds down on itself and when I'm not using my watercolor, I just keep all my dried watercolor from the tube in here and you can see that it's flaky now, but when I go to use it, it can be reactivated with water and a brush. That has a nice mixing pallets up here and lots of chambers for all your different colors. You're also going to need some watercolored paper. I like to use the Moleskine watercolor notebook just because I like to be able to keep all my drawings in one place, but you can use whatever paper works best for you. You can also just use a simple [inaudible] watercolor pad. You're going to need some brushes, so you probably just need smaller ones for this class. These are just round sixes and around four those are the sizes. You can see the four is smaller than the six or if you wanted to, you could use these ten tail water brushes. These are really nice, convenient watercolor tools. They basically have a water chamber up here and then they have a nice soft nylon tip that's really easy to clean and you just squeeze a little bit to push water through the tip. You're also going to need a container of water, just a plastic container and of course, watercolor. These are my favorite colors that I like to use often, you'll see that some of the basic colors that you get in a set are missing just because I don't use colors like umber number and stuff. But here are the colors I use. My favorite brand is the Winsor & Newton cotton water colors just because they're the best quality that I have in my entire set. But these are cadmium red hue hue, permanent rose and cadmium orange hue. I have lemon yellow, crimson red. Two greens, I have green deep and spot or sap green. I have a radian, I have cobalt blue, and these are actually to my favorites. I really love fresh blue and violet. Those are all the basic materials that you'll need. Make sure to download the project checklist. In the next module, we're going to be brainstorming and starting the sketch our motifs. 3. Motif Brainstorm: Now that we have all of our materials gather, we can start to think about the motifs for our surface pattern design. Now typically motifs are something that repeat throughout a repeating pattern. They can be objects or they can be textures. But it's just something that you can draw over and over again or have repeat in your pattern. In a lot of surface pattern design classes, florals are really popular and I can see why they're so beautiful and fun to draw. But in this class, I really want you to go past florals and think about a motif theme that you'd be able to draw, that is something that you really like. For example, if I were to start brainstorming motifs for my project, I would think about things that I like. The first thing that came to mind for me is breakfast. I love breakfast foods and I love cooking breakfast, things like eggs, bacon, coffee cups, spatulas, pans and things like that. Another thing that I really like are art supplies, so I could do surface pattern design based on pens, watercolor tubes, watercolor brushes, or tools that I use all the time. Another thing you could do are character designs. If you really like robots, you could do a watercolor surface pattern design surrounding robots or monsters or cute little things like that. Go ahead and pick something that you like and brainstorm a list of ideas for your motif theme, and go ahead and upload them in the Project Gallery. In the next section, we're going to be drawing our motifs. 4. Drawing: For my project's motive, I'm going to go ahead and go with the art supply idea. I like the idea of pens repeating over and over again in a repeating pattern. When you're drawing, you can choose to draw everything in pencil first, or you can just go ahead and ink things as you go. I'm actually just going to go ahead and use this as a guide, so I'm not going to completely sketch everything in pencil, but I'll just have everything ready. So I know basically the sizes of everything and I can outline things easily. All the pens are in this general size and then the paintbrush goes out to here, so I'm just going to start to doodle these. For these doodles, I'm using the Copic Multiliner in 0.3. Now your doodles don't have to be perfect, these are really just drawings that you're going to do. Depending on your artistic style, you can choose to do them as detailed or as silly as you like. It's really going to be your design completely. It helps to work from a reference if you have it, that's why I laid out all my materials here. I've gone ahead and chosen a few pens that I wanted to draw and I recreated them over here. You can see that the drawings don't have to be perfect. Again they're just really your interpretation of your motive theme. I'm pretty happy with these, and in the next section, we're going to fill them in with watercolor. If you want to give your drawing a moment to dry, that's fine, but generally, Copics would be ready to paint on top of right away. Go ahead and take a picture of your drawing and upload it to the class project. 5. Painting with Watercolor: Now we're ready to start painting with watercolor. I didn't mention this before, but you're going to need an eraser in order to lightly erase your pencil lines. Because if you paint on top of them, they're not going to be able to be erased. Just quickly erase your pencil lines. I really like this black eraser because it doesn't pull up the ink from your inking pens. It's really gentle on your paper too. If you've taken service pattern design classes in the past, you know that you can play with your colors pretty easily. But because we're working with watercolor and going to be vectorizing it, I want you to think about your color motif before you start. I'm going to limit my color palette to about three colors. I'm going to do purple, pink, and orange, and various tints and shades of that. I'm just going to go ahead and get my water color brush ready. Dip it in water, and I'm going to start with this purple here. It's just going to be interpretations of our reference. If you don't have a ton of experience with watercolor, the general rules are, the more water you use, the lighter your watercolor will end up looking. You can blend the colors as you want to, etc. It doesn't really matter if you go outside the lines, because you can either clean that up in Photoshop or you can leave it as is, and it gives it a nice offset look. To change colors, you want to rinse your brush and then wipe it off on a paper towel, and then you can go ahead and use another color. If you accidentally put too much pigment down, you could take a dry brush and pull it up with your brush and wipe it off on a paper towel. These are all done. You can see I left some interesting painterly qualities here. I have some blending and extra pigmentation than some places. So go ahead and let this dry. While it's drying, go ahead and take a picture of it and upload it to your class project. 6. Digitizing and Vectorizing Your Motifs: Go ahead and scan in your work at 300 DPI, and when you're ready drop it into Photoshop, we're going to need to clean it up a little bit before we bring it into Illustrator. First thing you need to do is install a Media Militia action. In order to do this, you can go to the link that I'll provide in the class description, install it, and then go ahead and open up your actions window. So go to Window, Actions, and you'll see your Media Militia removal background kit here. Removal techniques, if you expand that, and then choose the one that says White Background Removal with Color, you can go ahead and click the Play button. What this is going to do is bring up a prompt to basically show you how to adjust the levels, so go ahead and click Continue. Then what I like to do is click on the white eyedropper and click in the white part of your drawing, where you want the background that disappear. When you're good with that, go ahead and click Okay, and then the action will run through and go ahead and process everything, and you see it went ahead and dropped out the background, which is super awesome and helpful. Before we bring this in the Illustrator too, I want to do a little clean up, so I'm going to hit E on my keyboard for eraser, and you can use the left and right brackets in your keyword in order to change the diameter of your eraser. I just want to get rid of some smudges that I have here. That looks pretty good. If for whatever reason when you did this action, if you zoom in, you can hit Z on your keyboard, click and drag a box. You can see that my pen is starting to look really light, so I'm going to bring up the levels panel again by hitting Command or Ctrl+L, and then hitting the black eyedropper tool, and then clicking on black. So you can see it really pumped up the contrast of the black outline. Click Okay, you can hit Command+0 to zoom out of everything, and now this is ready to be pulled into Illustrator. With this selection tool, go ahead and hit Command or Ctrl+A on your keyboard, to select everything. Hit Command+C to copy. Then we're going to go over in Illustrator and create a new document by hitting Command+N. You can use the color mode RGB if you're going to keep this on the computer, but if you want to be able to print this out anytime choose CMYK, and same for here, if you want to be able to print this out at any point, use 300 PPI raster effects, otherwise choose screen. Because I'm just going to be keeping this pretty much on my computer, I'm going to keep it like that. The artboard size doesn't matter that much, so I'll go ahead and click Okay, and you already have your drawing in your clipboard, so go ahead and hit Command+V to paste. To make this a little easier to work with, I'm just going to adjust my artboard size, and you can do this by hitting the Artboard tool or Shift+O on your computer, and just adjusting the box so that it crops perfectly to your drawing. This is just going to help you zoom faster. Hit Enter when you're done, and then go back to your selection tool and everything's all right. Now you can hit Command+0 at anytime in order to view your entire document. Within Illustrator, there's a function called image trace, in order to bring that panel up go to Window, Image Trace. I already have it over here, so I'm just going to click over on my panel. This is really easy, what we're going to do is hit the Preset, High Fidelity Photo. It's going to take awhile for Illustrator to calculate all the pixels and all the blobs it needs to create in order for a to vectorize the work. While it's doing this, I'm going to tell you a little bit about why vectorizing is so important with our surface pattern design, and basically vectors are different from raster graphics in that, you're able to scale them up infinitely without losing any quality. So this is going to be really helpful if you drew your drawings that are really small size, and you want to be able to print them out at a larger size. Depending on the complexity of your artwork, this may take a long time for it to calculate, so go ahead and grab a cup of coffee or something. Once it's done, you'll see the drawing shift a little bit and that means that everything's good to go. Now, if you zoom in, hitting Z on the keyboard and then zooming in anywhere, you can determine whether or not you want this to be more refined. So this is looking pretty good to me, I think there's enough detail in here. If I hit Command+0 here I can view everything. I think there's enough detail in here to where I don't need to adjust the color threshold, so this is going to be your color accuracy. If you take a look here in the info panel, you can see that there are about 4,000 colors being generated. So that's a lot of colors, and that means that our file size is also going to be pretty huge. This works for me, you can go ahead and play with the colors. Just make note that when you move this slider, it will recalculate everything, so take that into consideration before you do it. But this is good for me, so I'm going to go ahead and hit Expand at the top, and this is going to convert everything into paths. Now it looks like a mess, but before you do anything, you need to ungroup it twice by hitting Shift+Command+G on your keyboard, if you're on a PC, you Shift+Ctr+G. Then go ahead and use your selection tool and you can see that now everything is in different groups. We're going to clean this up a little bit, but before we do, I want to show you a quick keyboard shortcut that I find really helpful. Go up to Edit, Keyboard Shortcuts, and then you want to match the menu commands. We're going to find the thing for select, and then same fill color. So I've already changed the shortcut to be Command+R. Go ahead and use whatever you want, but I find that that isn't already taken up by Illustrator, and if it is, you can just overwrite it if you don't use it a lot. So when that's done, go ahead and hit Okay. Now, what we can do back in our drawing is when we click this section of a drawing, which is essentially the background, we can hit Command+R which will select all of the same fill color, and then we can just hit Delete on our keyboard in order to clean that up. To zoom in, you want to zoom in and make sure there aren't any weird things going on here with your drawing. Like I remember when I was down here, there are some shadowing happening here. So just click on the offensive part of your drawing, and then hit Command+R, to grab that color elsewhere and hit Delete, and you can keep doing that around your drawings until your artwork is cleaned up. Once you're ready now that were zoomed in, I'm going to show you that each of these pieces is completely individuals. So they're just individual blobs that make up the entire watercolor look, so we want these to be grouped together so the objects are grouped together. But you can still see all the watercolor texture. Depending on what motifs you have, there are different ways to grab your art and group it together. If you have boxed out motifs that are easy to grab, you can use the direct selection tool, which is A on your keyword, and draw a box around your motif, and then hit Command+G to group it together. Then if he switched back to the selection tool, which is V on your keyboard, you'll be able to see that this is now one piece. The other way to do this is if you have objects that are really close to each other or that are amorphous and not straight edges, you can use the Command+Q on your keyword, which will allow you to draw a free form lasso around your object. You can carefully just trace around it with your mouse, and then once you release your mouse, you'll see that all the blobs are selected and go ahead and hit Command+G on your keyword again. You can see now that these are two individual objects, so we can move around. Go ahead and repeat this until all of your objects are grouped. All of my objects are now grouped into individual pieces, you can see that if you click on some of them, there are messy pieces that happen here, and this is really going to depend on what surface pattern design background that you want. If I went with a white background, it wouldn't matter because all of these pieces would just be moot and you wouldn't be able to see them. But say, I wanted to draw these on a dark background that would be a problem. We use the eyedropper tool and choose the dark purple, double-click the color picker, and just suggests to choose a color within that family. I'm going to draw a box behind these guys, and then send it to the back using Command+Shift left bracket. So these are pretty messy. Now we can zoom in, and see that there are definitely some messy pieces of our drawing. So if we double-click on any one of our objects, it'll go directly into the group where we can click on individual pieces that we want to fix, use the Command+R shortcut, and just delete the scraggly bits on the edges. Then once you're done editing your object, go ahead and double-click outside of your object, and you can see your work. Repeat this for every object that you need to fix. Once you're done cleaning up around your objects, you may notice that there are still some shadowing that's happening outside of your objects, and it might be hard to grab those. So what you can do is go ahead and expand your layers here, go down to your background and click over here to lock it. Now what you can do is just click and drag a box around the pieces that you want to delete and then delete them. You can also completely zoom out, drag objects off your artboard, and then delete everything to get rid of every piece of shadow there. Now if we drag it back on, you can see where you need to still clean it up. These are looking pretty good, there are some things that I want to show you how to do because there are some gaps here that I actually want filled in. Even if it goes on top of a dark background, these got pulled out of your drawing when you cleaned up your background. In order to do this, click on the group you want to fix, and then you're going to use your live paint tool, which is K on your keyboard, and I want to be able to paint this background of this so it fills in completely. I'm going to choose a color for my color picker, and I want it to be bright white, and hit Okay, and now if I hover over it, you can see the outlines change, and if I click in that area, it should change it to white. It'll take a little bit longer than it usually does simply because these drawings are so complex. But once you're done, you can go ahead and click your selection tool again, and zoom out and you can see that that's now fixed. So go ahead and repeat that for all the pieces that you want to fix. Again, all we're doing here is clicking on the object we want to change, then hitting K on the keyboard for live paint tool, choosing your color and then choosing the parts that you want it to be filled in. Then go ahead and click away, and you can see that it's all filled in. So these are looking pretty good and all cleaned up, I'm going to go ahead and delete my background layer because I don't need that anymore. I'm going to hit Command+0 on my keyboard, so I can see everything, and my objects are ready to go and ready to be turned into a surface pattern design. Because we refuse to live paint tool, we need to clean up some of our objects here. You want to click on your objects, click and drag to select all, and then go to Object, Expand. When prompted, click Okay. Now all of our objects are vectorized. Before we move into creating the repeating pattern in Illustrator, go ahead and take a screenshot of your work and save it to your class project. In order to do this, you already have your artboard setup, so just go to File, Export, and then you want to use your artboards, find a place where you want to save it, and I'll say this as Pens. Make sure to use artboards and click Export. You want to have this as a screen resolution image and make sure it's art optimized, because that'll just make it look better, and then click Okay. Now, you see that you have a nice image of your vectorized work that you can go ahead and upload into your class project. In the next segment, we're going to be changing our watercolored objects into a repeating pattern. 7. Illustrator Basics for Surface Pattern Design: Before we hop in to some surface pattern design techniques, I just want to go over some illustrator basics really quickly. In Illustrator here I have another water doodle that I created for another project. This will just be easy to show you how to work with illustrator. First, I'm going to show you how to copy and paste an object. In order to do that, you want to have this selection tool, which is v on your keyboard, and you can click on the object to select it. If you hit "Command" or "Control C" on your keyboard and then hit "Command" or "Control V" on your keyboard, it will paste it into place in the center of wherever you're located. If I were over here and I hit "Control V" it would paste it in the center. I'm going to delete that by hitting "Delete" on my keyboard. You can always go back to view your entire artboard by hitting "Command" or "Control 0", or "Command" or "Control 0" on your keyboard. Another thing that's helpful is knowing how to pan around your document. You can pan around your document using your mouse, but you can also use the zoom tools, which is Command Minus and Plus. Command Minus will zoom out, Command Plus will zoom in, and if you ever find that you're lost in your drawing you can always hit "Command 0" to zoom out. While I'm saying command, command is for Mac and you can replace that with control if you're on a PC. Another thing that's helpful with the zoom tool is you can hit "Z" on your keyboard and then click and drag a box to zoom in on the area of the drawing that you want to see and hit "Command 0" to zoom back out. Now that we've copied our object, I can just leave it as is. I'm actually going to delete this for a second because I want to show you how to draw a rectangle because that's something that you'll need to know as well. In order to draw a rectangle, you want to hit "M" on your keyboard or you can also access it up here for rectangle tool, and you can just click and drag to draw a rectangle. Now, this looks boring because it's just a white rectangle with a black border, and you can tell that by looking over here at your color picker. These colors correspond to the fill and the stroke of your object that you have selected. So if I double-click on the fill, I can change its color to be anything that I want. Let's say I wanted it to be this blue, I hit "OK". Say I didn't want any stroke, for most of these surface pattern designs that we are going to be doing we don't want any stroke, so I'm just going to hit this "None", no stroke value here, and you can also use the shortcut slash, forward slash. Let's say I wanted to change this color, but I wanted it to be a color within my motif, I'm just going to hit "I" on my keyboard for the eyedropper tool, and I can click on a color and it'll pull it from the motif that I'm looking at. Now, say I like this color but I want it to be a little bit lighter than what I'm working with, I can always go to the color picker fill, double-click to open the color picker, and within this color box there are colors that relate to the original color but they're all within the same family. I can click and choose another color. You can see your original color down here and your new color up top. If I hit "OK", you can see it's a little bit lighter than our original color but it allows it to stay within the same family so it doesn't look hodgepodge. Now, another thing that we need to know how to do is copy and pasting back. Before we just copied and pasted an object, I'm going to use Command C to copy this square that's drawn, and then hit "Command B" to paste in back. If now I choose my selection tool, which is V on the keyboard, and I move this front guy over you can see that another object was pasted in back. When you go ahead and delete these, and I'm going to show you how to work with some of your motifs. You may have a few motifs, but I'm just going to focus on one. The first thing we need to do is know how to mirror our object. I'm going to copy this object and then paste it on my artboard, and then I want to mirror it. I can do that by hitting "O" on my keyboard, which is the shortcut for the Reflect tool, and you can see this is where the anchor point is. If I want it to be mirrored perfectly 90 degrees, I can hold down "Shift" on my keyboard. You can do that if you want to. I'm going to mirror it back the other way. I want to show you how to rotate an object. Here is our original object, and say I wanted it to be a little bit tilted, I could click on the object then hit "R" on my keyboard, which is the shortcut for rotate, and then click and drag to rotate it in a circle. You can rotate it anyway you want. I'm going to undo that by hitting "Command Z" on my keyboard. Keep hitting "Command Z" to get back to whatever state you're at. The last thing I want to show you how to do is scale your object. I'm going to copy and paste this so I have a duplicate. Now, to scale an object in Illustrator you hit "E" on your keyboard, but you have to make sure to have your object selected and then hit "E" on your keyboard, and now it comes up with a bounding box. In order to scale it uniformly so it doesn't get skewed like this, you want to make sure to hold down "Shift" on your keyboard. I'm going to delete this. Click on your object, hit "Command C" and then "Command V" to paste it. I want to scale this down so it's a lot smaller. I'll hit "E" on the keyboard to scale and hold down "Shift" to scale it. The other thing I can do to scale it uniformly towards the center, which I do often, is I'll copy this guy again. Then if you hit "E" key on the keyboard and then hold down "Shift" and "Alt" or "Option" on your keyboard, it will scale it towards the center. I like that because it allows it to stay in place of what you're looking at. Those are the basic Illustrator functions that you'll need for this class. Of course, there are a lot more and a lot of different ways to do all this, but I hope this helps you keep up with the keyboard shortcuts that I'm going to use while we're making our repeating pattern. In the next lesson, I'm going to show you some basic repeats, and then in the final class we'll create our complex repeating pattern using our water doodles. 8. Basic Repeating Pattern Types: In this lesson, I'm going to be showing you some basic repeating pattern types. Now this is only showing you using one motif, but it'll get you started thinking about how you want to lay out your surface pattern design in our next module. In Illustrator, I have this one motif grouped together, and the first pattern I want to show you is the square repeat. In order to make this, I'm going to show you a couple of more Illustrator techniques. So I want to move this object perfectly over a little bit. So I'm going to copy; Command C and then I'm going to paste this in front by hitting Command F on my keyboard, and that's just the same as Command B. We're just pasting back, but it's pasting in front. Now if I move this perfectly over and hold down Shift, it will lock it in the grid position. So I can do the same thing by clicking and dragging, Command C, Command F, and then clicking and dragging holding down Shift. So now we have a grid repeat. This is also called a square repeat. So I'm just going to delete these guys. Another thing we can do is called a brick by column. I'm going to Command C, Command F, and then drag this guy down. I'm actually going to zoom out and drag this guy down again. The other way you can copy objects is to hold down Option on your keyboard and you'll see that this little double error comes up. That means that it's going to duplicate the original drawing. So hold down Option and it'll duplicate it and then also hold down Shift, so it'll stay in that perfect line. So there we have that. Now brick by column, you want these to be duplicated as well, so I'm going to hold down Option, click and drag perfectly out, and then I'm going to also hold down Option here and then click and drag down. So there's another type of repeating pattern that's a brick by column. These aren't perfect, so I'll show you how to make them perfect in our next section, but I just want to show you the types here. Much like you have brick by column, we also have brick by row. So if you click and create multiple copies here, you can also drag this row down like this, and then click and drag this row perfectly down. So you have a brick by row. The other thing you can do is create a mirrored row. So I'm going to click and drag this down, click and drag this down, and then I'm going to duplicate these guys by hitting Option and Shift and dragging that out, then hitting O on my keyboard to reflect it. Click and drag and hold down Shift, and now I have my reflected pattern. You can just copy this entire column again, and that's a reflected type of repeating pattern. So that's just a quick overview of some basic repeating pattern types. We can get really creative with the ones that we're going to do, but I just wanted to show you the basics. In the next lesson we're going to be creating our fun repeating pattern using our motifs that we drew earlier in this class. 9. Creating Repeating Patterns in Illustrator 1: Now, that we have all of our objects vectorized and we're ready to go with some basic Illustrator commands, let's start to build our repeating pattern. First, I'm going to zoom out on my artboard and we can start to work on a repeating pattern outside of the original artboard. I'm going to draw a rectangle and I can do that by clicking on the rectangle tool or hitting M on my keyboard, and then I'm going to choose a color for the fill by using the eyedropper tool, which is I on keyword. Then I'll just choose this color for now. It doesn't need to be the final color we're going to work with. It'll just help determine our bounding box. By hitting M on the keyboard, I'm going to draw a rectangle. But I want it to be a specific dimension, because I need it to be a dimension I can remember. I'm going to start to click and draw and if we go up here to transform, we can see the specific dimensions of it. If I'm thinking about my motifs and how big they are, the bounding box needs to be bigger than the motifs so that it can repeat on both sides and I'll show you what I mean in a little bit. But I drew this box and it's about 800 by 400, so I'm just going to change the dimensions up here to 800 pixels wide by 400 pixels wide and I'll remember that for when I have everything laid out. Once you're done with that, you can click on "Transform" again to hide the size. Now, I'm actually going to lock this layer in place. I can do that by opening my Layers panel over here. If you don't already have this open, go to "Window" and hit "Layers". First, I need to make sure it's at the very bottom so I'm just going to click and drag it to the bottom here, and then click over here to toggle the lock, so now I can't select it or move it. When a hide my Layers panel here, and then copy all my objects up here and start to play with the arrangement. When creating a repeating pattern, you need to think about how things overlap each edge. Anything that overlaps this edge will also need to overlap it perfectly over here. Say I wanted to have this pen and its location right here, I would also need to copy it over here, so it's perfectly 800 pixels from the right of this original object, and I remember that because my original rectangle is 800 by 400 pixels. If I click on this object, I can move it perfectly 800 pixels without having to guess by hitting Command-Shift-M on my keyboard. This brings up the Move panel. Horizontally, I want to move it 800 pixels, and vertically I want to move it zero pixels. I can hit "Preview" to see where it's going to end up and that's pretty good. I just want to make sure to hit "Copy" and now you see you have a perfect copy that's exactly 800 pixels. Whenever you're having something overlap to left, it also needs to overlap the right. For the same thing you also need to have something that's overlapping the top, overlap the bottom. We'll go over that in a little bit more, but let's first lay out our objects. When you're first laying out your objects for surface pattern design, you want to start at the top and left edge and then work your way down, and I'll show you what I mean here. The first thing I want to do is think about how I want my objects to be laid out. Because these are long and narrow objects, I was thinking that I want to have things stacked in a brick formation but not have the same pen back-to-back, so I want to play around with the arrangement of these. I'll start with this pen up here, and it's going to overlap the top and left corner, and then maybe I'll use this paintbrush over here and continue on with the pens. I don't want them to necessarily be all stacked up like they are down here so I'm just going to play around with the arrangement a little bit. If I need to duplicate another object, I can just click on the object and hold down Option, and then drag it to where I need it. I've used each pen a couple of times and this is looking pretty good. I want to be able to test my artwork though. There's going to be some problems that we're going to run into, but I'll show you what to do with that in a second. Because this is overlapping the left edge, it also needs to overlap the right edge and same with everything that overlaps this left edge. I'm going to select everything that overlaps the left edge by clicking and dragging a box. You see it selected all those four objects, and then hitting Command-Shift-M on my keyboard, moving it 800 pixels horizontally and zero pixels vertically. Because I have preview selected, it will show me where it's going to end up. That's looking pretty good. I'm going to hit "Copy" and it went ahead and copied those objects. Now, you see we end up with a problem over here because the paintbrush ends up overlapping and that won't work. I'm going to rearrange some of the objects in the center here. I'm going to move this paintbrush down here, maybe that will work a little better. Swap it out for this pen here, and I'm going to scoot this pen over a little bit too. Now, because some of these are stacking up weird and there's not enough space, what I might do is go back and change the dimensions of my artwork so it's a little bit wider. I'm going to go ahead and do that really quick. I'm going to open my Layers panel, unlocks the path, and I want this to be a little bit bigger so I'm going to click on "Transform". I'm going to change the width to about 1,000 pixels instead of 800, and then I'm going to relock my layer there. Now, you can see that there's a little bit more breathing room and that is looking a lot better. When I delete these guys that I copied and choose the guys that are overlaying the left side, Command-Shift-M and I'm going to copy them 1,000 pixels horizontally and zero pixels vertically to copy. That's looking a lot better. I'm going to arrange these a little bit more in the center here. It's looking a little spaced out. I'm not sure if I like the spacing on this, but let's just play around with it a little more. Before I do anything else, I want to make sure to copy everything that's overlapping on the top to the bottom so it will be perfectly seamless. I'm going to click and drag a box around everything that overlaps the top, hit Command-Shift-M on my keyboard to move it, we're moving it horizontally zero pixels now. This is a little backwards, because in order to move it down, you need to have a positive verticals, so I'm going to have 400 pixels vertically and you can just double-check by hitting "Preview" or making sure where it's going to end up is where you want it to be. Hit "Copy" and that's looking pretty good. Now, I can begin to play around with the objects that are appearing in the middle here. I might want to repeat this row entirely, so I'm going to click and hold down Shift to select multiple objects and then hold down Option and then copy those objects again down here. Now, if I want them facing another direction, because that might be a little more fun; I'm going to rotate it. I'm going to hit O on my keyboard and I want to reflect around that path. That's pretty fun. I like that a lot. I want to just adjust the rotation of this pen or this brush. I'm going to hit R on my keyboard and rotate it a little bit. That's good. If I wanted to fix this one, I would need to fix this one so I'll show you what I mean. I want to rotate this a little bit so it's a little bit straighter so I'm going to hit R on my keyboard and rotate it. Now, I need to delete this object and then recopy it. I'm going to hit Command-Shift-M, type in 1,000 pixels horizontal, zero pixels vertical and it's going to copy over to the right there. Copy. That's good. I'm going to do the same thing for this row. I'm going to copy it down here, holding down Option and copying it like that. I like that. I like how it's turning out. Now, I'm just going to fuss with the rose a little bit so they're spaced out a little bit better. Once you're satisfied with how everything looks, go ahead and open up your Layers panel again, and unlock your bounding box. Now, here comes the fun part. I'm going to click on my bounding box, and I'm going to hit Command-C to copy it, and then Command-B to paste it in back. Immediately with the fill selected, I'm going to click on "None" so it's no fill and no stroke. Now, what I can do is highlight and select everything and I need to open up my Swatches panel. If you don't have this open, you can go to "Window", "Swatches", but I have it open over here already. Now, what I need to do is click and drag everything into the Swatches panel. It looks like nothing happened here, but we're not done quite yet. Click off of the selected objects and I'm going to create a brand new box. I'm going to hit M on my keyword for the rectangle tool, and click and drag a box. Now, because I've already generated my repeating pattern with the swatch, I want to just going to click on the swatch to fill it in and might take a little bit and there you can see my repeating pattern. That looks pretty good. I'm really excited about this. If you want to preview your patterns smaller or bigger, you can go to "Object", "Transform", "Scale", and make sure you have down here with the options. You have "Transform Patterns" selected and not Transform Objects. "Preview" selected so we can see everything that we're doing, and say I wanted to see the pen set of smaller size. I could change the size of the uniformity to be about 50 percent, and it'll automatically calculate it in this panel. I actually want it to be a little bit bigger so let's try 80 percent. That's good. Click, "Okay". Here's our seamlessly repeating pattern. If you want to see the pattern dragged a little bit to the left, right, top or bottom, you can hold down the tilde on your keyboard, which is next to the one or the exclamation point, and then click and drag the box. It looks like it's being dragged and then you can see it will recalculate the swatch. You can also click on the swatch over and over in the Swatches panel and it will recalculate as well. When you're all done creating your seamless repeating pattern, let's export it so we can upload it to Skillshare. With the box that you drew selected, click on the "Artboard Tool", which is Shift-O on your computer, and then you can click and drag a box surrounding the rectangle you just drew. Now, I see there's a little bit of white space here, so I'm just going to pull it down a little bit. That looks good. When you're done, just hit V on your keyboard for the Select tool and click O. Now, I have two art boards here. I have the first artboard which is down here, and then the second one, which is my seamless repeating pattern. This can be any size you want. If you need to transform this, you can use a transform box and if you wanted a specific dimension, you can do it that way. But I'm just going to leave it like this. I think this looks pretty cool, especially for my pens that are long and narrow. I'm going to go to "File", "Export", and now I want to change this to the "Use Artboards" and because this is the second artboard, I'm going to change these arranged to be two, I'm going to name this "final-seamless-repeating-pattern", hit "Export". In the next screen, you want to make sure to have the resolution as high and then "Art Optimized" is really important because sometimes when you're creating a seamless pattern, you can see the light line that Illustrator creates, but it's actually not there, but you just need to make sure to have it as Art Optimized and that line will disappear on your export. Click "Okay". Depending on how complex your drawings are, especially because these are vectorized watercolor, this might take a little bit to export. Now, if we go ahead and look at our exported file, I can see that my file is completely rendered as a seamless repeating pattern in Illustrator. In the next module, I'm going to show you how to quickly build another seamless repeating pattern using different colors or different method and then we'll be all wrapped up. Make sure to take this time to upload your work so far to the Class Projects so we can all see what you're working on. 10. Creating Repeating Patterns in Illustrator 2: Before we hop away from repeating patterns, I just want to show you a different way to go about this. I'm going to zoom out again and just create another repeating pattern here and I copy my original objects over here, and now I want to just do something fun. I'm going to highlight all of them, hit "R" my keyboard to rotate the pens, and I'm just going to tilt them a little bit. I think it might be fun to do a repeating pattern where they're all pointing in one direction. I want to use this as a group, so I'm going to highlight all of them, hit Command G to group them together, and then duplicate the group again in a perfect line. Then I use O my keyboard to reflect that group hold down Shift, and now I'm going to use the selection tool and just move it up a little bit. I'm going to go ahead and draw a rectangle here. I'm not sure what the dimensions will end up being. If this happens, that means your swatch is selected, so go ahead and change the fill to a color, and it can be any color. Then send it to the back using Command Shift, left bracket. I'm just going to play around with the arrangement here a little bit, I want them overlapping these corners, and I want to make sure my square is a good size, so let's see, this is 900 by 900, so I'm just going to make it perfectly 900 by 900. That's good. Now I'm going to just copy these down and to the left. First I'm going to do down, I'm going to do 0 horizontal and 900 pixels vertically, and then copy that. Do the same thing here, negative 900 to move it to the left for horizontal and vertically, I want to move it 0, and copy. I had these guys down here and let's see what happens if I copy it to the right. So if I hit Command Shift M and then move it over 900 pixels and vertically 0 pixels, copy it. Well then ends up working out. I'm going to do the same thing because these are overlapping on the bottom, and then do Command Shift M to 0 horizontally and negative 900 vertically to move it up and hit "Copy". Let's see what happens here. I'm going to go ahead and click on my bounding box, I didn't lock this one, but I know what direction I was going inside and need to do that. I'm going to hit Command C to copy, Command V to paste, and then change the fill color to No Fill. Now I'm going to open my Swatches panel, select everything by clicking and dragging, I'm going to drag this into our swatches. I scroll down, it should be here, it is right here. Now I'm going to click away and scroll to a new area of my artboard here. Click on rectangle tool, draw a big rectangle, and go ahead and select the swatches created. You can see this is hard to tell what's going on with the repeating pattern. I'm going to right-click and go to Transform and Scale, and then make sure to do transform patterns, and not the objects. I see, I want this at about 30 percent, maybe a little bit bigger. Let's try 50. Yeah, it's good, so click "OK". I definitely like how that looks. It's fun how they play off of each other as almost like a herringbone pattern, but not. The one thing I don't like is the background color. If you are in this stage and you're like, "Oh, I like my repeating pattern, but I don't necessarily like my background color", there's an easy way to fix this. Just go back to your original repeat, hit V in your keyboard for your Select tool, choose your bounding box, and then we're going to change the color. Let's say I wanted to pull in this pink color from this pen, a lighter pink. I'm going to hit I on my keyboard, and then choose this pink here. That's a little bit to pink, let's try this one over here, a little bit lighter. Let's see, that is not pink, that's good. It's just a really soft pink. Now with my selection tool, I'm going to click and drag to select everything that is included in the swatch, and then I'm going to click and drag that into my swatches panel. You can see, instead of updating the old swatch, it actually just created a new swatch pattern. If I zoom out now, I can create another panel. I can just duplicate this one, I'm just going to hold down Option and drag it over, and then I'm going to choose my new swatch over here. If I zoom in, I can see both swatches next to each other, and I can tell that I already really liked this background color a lot more. That's really fun, you can just see from this, you can make multiple versions of your repeating pattern with your motifs, and you can also easily change at the background color. I invite you guys to upload your repeating patterns, all the ones that you come up with it, whether it just one or multiple, upload them to your class project that way other students and I can see what you're working on and what you come up with. 11. Thanks! Remember to Upload Your Project!: Thanks so much for sticking around and finishing up with the class. I really hope that you upload your work because I'd love to see where you're working on and I know that your fellow students would also like to see what you create. If you want to learn more about surface pattern design, Photoshop or Illustrator, you can head over to my blog, [inaudible].com, where I share weekly tutorials about those programs and all techniques for art and illustration. Thanks again for joining the class. I hope you had a great time and I hope you have even more fun making more surface pattern design with watercolor.