It’s all about sketching…

So week 2 of the ABSPD has just finished and what a week it was! The focus for the week was on sketching, challenging us to think outside the box and try out new ways of working. Loosening up, doodling and mark making were key to help add texture and depth to designs, using different drawing styles, tools and techniques to help us try to find our natural signature looks.

I found this quite challenging as I’m naturally quite controlled and deliberate with my drawings so it took me a little while to get into it but once I had, it was really good fun! And the results were quite interesting! It felt great to just let go and do whatever, letting my hands create whatever marks they wanted to. It also taught me that I shouldn’t be afraid to make mistakes – there are no right or wrongs in surface pattern design and its ok to create something you’re not quite sure of. Keep it for a later date – you never know when it might come in handy!

Sketching and mark making - don;t be afraid to make "mistakes"!
Sketching and mark making – don’t be afraid to make “mistakes”!

There was also a lot of discussions about sketchbooks and how different designers use them in different ways. I’ve always loved to use sketchbooks, but like many people, I find the pages quite intimidating sometimes and am frightened to draw on them for fear of “spoiling” the book. Crazy as this sounds, it seems to be quite a common issue for many people so it made me feel “normal”! It was great to see all the different ways that people work and how you can create your own sketchbooks, and that you don’t have to just use readymade ones. Drawing on single sheets of paper is far less intimidating and I’ve found this a much easier way to work.

Now I just need to work out how to document all of these loose sheets of paper to satisfy my organising OCD!!

Drawing onto loose pieces of paper is far less intimiadtiong than a pristine sketchbook...
Drawing onto loose pieces of paper is far less intimidating than a pristine sketchbook…

We were also encouraged to look at different patterns we love and find a way of cataloguing them to help us identify what we are interested in. I’ve always found Pinterest to be a great way of storing inspiration and it’s great to be able to split things down into different categories if you want to. Looking through some of the prints and patterns I’ve pinned before, I’ve noticed I’m drawn to quite a wide variety of styles, from simple mark making designs to quirky, whimsical styles with characters, bright stylised motifs and illustrated styles. I think it’s a good mix and is currently reflected in some of my existing work, but I want to continue to explore and develop my designs further, using my own signature style.

A screen shot of some patterns from my pinterest boards
A screen shot of some patterns from my pinterest boards

I’ve still got a few exercises to catch up on from the last week but have enjoyed everything I’ve done so far and feel like things are certainly going in the right direction. I’m really enjoying the course and finding out who I am as a designer and what makes me buzz. It’s also great to see everyone else’s work and how diverse it all is, I find it very inspiring and encouraging.

After a bit more doodling and working with some of my mark making textures, I created this fun little design…..a great thought for the week!

Smiley doodles for a happy thought!
Smiley doodles for a happy thought!

Have a great week everyone!