So Many Ways to Use One Pattern July 2, 2011

One of my favorite designs to create is Samplers.

Pumpkin Harvest2aresize

The first thing I decide before I put a pencil to my sketch pad is my theme and surface.  Once the theme is in place, my creating begins.  Yes, as several of you know and many of you will soon find out, I love my details. Samplers to me just tell a story and once that story begins I go from one chapter to another. There are countless edits along the way; colors change, objects are added or deleted, but the final result always (well most of the time) makes me feel good. I will confess I truly find it hard to come to that final chapter. But eventually I find the end. Now do you all realize where all the details come from?!!

Less is More is not in my vocabulary or better yet, not in any of my designs.

When you look at my designs or any other artist’s patterns ask yourself this question, “How many ways can I use this pattern?” I am sure you can come up with numerous different ideas. It is the main reason I like to create sampler designs because they offer you, the artist many options to be creative. I know it is hard to look beyond what I have done with the design, but keep in mind if you find the project to be overwhelming break the design down and do a little of this and that. Just bear in mind if you alter things within mine or another artist’s designs it is still the original creators copyright. As a designer, I create so you all can be creative. I love to see what other students and fellow artists decide to do with my designs in the way they use different surfaces, colors and style. Lots of times I so love the surface and want it!!!

When I was in Seattle at the Northwest Toleliners convention last year it was brought to my attention that a lovely artist by the name of Verna paints lots of things and they were for sale. I was so excited to see this tray painted with a portion of my Pumpkin Harvest design. It was sold….to me!!! Notice how she used the upper section of the design and then trimmed out the tray with the elements used on the black band of my design.  So cleaver….Great addition to my fall collection.

Pumpkin Harvest tray2

I also create seasonal projects so they can be interchangeable with a certain wood piece. I find once I create one piece I am already thinking of the next design. The hardest thing to do is putting away your painted panels to bring out the next season. It also saves on space and cost when using a surface over and over. While I was painting Pumpkin Harvest I was already thinking about Yuletide Sweets. I also have a tendency to repeat a theme within the seasonal paintings. It helps to tie in the different themes. 

Yuletide Sweets2aresize

I took the Yuletide Sweets design and created this ornament box and ornaments. In this design I thought dimensional. Are you beginning to see how it works?

Yuletide Sweets Ornamenta


Keep a small notebook and jot down your ideas. One important thing you need to keep in mind if you are enlarging certain items or design, you might need to make perspective adjustments.  Not all items look as good when they are enlarged. The design will become stretched but maybe you need width, so think about surface, what you want to do and experiment. You might need to cut and paste to make things work to your advantage. Patience, trial and error always helps.

 I always advise my students and customers it is not always important that your painting looks just like mine. I know that is hard to hear but you will become a better artist and there is nothing wrong to have your own style. If you paint to sell lessen the details and give it your own flair. No one will know but you. If you teach and like my designs but find they might be too much of a challenge for you or your students break things down, add less steps and details. Just follow my patterns step by step and you cannot go wrong. As I keep saying my creations are not hard, but yes DETAILED for sure.

Sharon Bond is a wonderful artist and she has created her own style. She paints mine and many of my fellow designer’s patterns with that special style. No they do not look like ours, but for that I love!!! Thank you so much Sharon for allowing me to share your lovely painted creations with everyone. I love the thoughts you put behind each piece and the surfaces which make such a difference. Just love er surfaces and want them all.

Olde Crow Sharon resize2

Olde Crow Kim                   

Glow of HarvestSharon2  

Glow of Harvest Kim2

Take the leap, try something new, create your own special style, and do not be afraid we all have been there.

Enjoy painting and creating as much as I do!!!

Until next time always paint with a happy heart…..Kim   

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