A couple of months ago, I made a flip-through video of a full art journal. Many noticed a spread that was made from decorative papers mostly. I remembered that I took some photos while making the papers and I will share step-by-step instructions here. This pattern is good practice for motoric skills and drawing, but it can also go beyond! I used it for a more expressive purpose, for a collage art piece.
1) Paint Stripes with Watercolors
Use a fairly thin paper and paint it with watercolors. Use a selection of colors to create stripes or curves.
You can add drops of water if you want to make the background more interesting with bleeds.
Let the paper dry properly.
2) Decorate the Stripes with a Simple Loop Pattern
Using a thin-tipped black drawing pen, draw a simple loop and end it with a curve upwards. Without lifting the pen off the paper, add a bunch of loops on the top of the curve. Then continued by drawing a curved line downwards. Repeat and draw the whole row on the same go. Work fast and don’t worry too much about the symmetry or similarity of the loops.
After drawing the rows, frame the loops to make them more distinct. I used simple shapes to create flowers and leaves.
3) Color the Background and Add More Decoration
To make the watercolored layer look more lively, use felt-tipped pens (marker pens) and color the background around the doodled shapes. You can also add more color to doodled details and use a white gel pen to add more decoration to colored areas.
Decorative Pattern in Many Colors
This pattern looks luxurious when you make many papers in many colors with slightly different decorations.
Here are some that I made!
Decorative Pattern in Collage Art
I am fascinated by the interface between art, design, and crafts. The idea for the pattern came from knitting. I wanted to find a similar relaxing circular motion using a pen instead of a knitting needle. So that’s how a craft transformed into a design. But design can also be a part of a more expressive piece.
In this collage, I use decorative paper pieces with paint. My starting point was a watercolor background, acrylic paint, and a piece of decorative paper.
I cut a couple of decorative shapes and glued them on the background with gel medium.
Then I continued with painting using acrylic paints. In the finishing phase, I also used some more paper pieces and few colored pencils. A week or two ago, I heard the geese flying over our house. They were leaving Finland, going to a warmer place for a winter. Their sounds made me think how limited we people are, not being able to fly so freely, not always being able to stick so tightly together. The screams of the geese felt bright yellow and for a short moment, I wanted to join them and not stay in Finland, waiting for snow …
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