Pattern Making As an Art Decorative Technique

A pattern is an organised arrangement of the elements of design such as dots, lines, shapes, textures, colours etc. on a surface using any appropriate technique for decoration. Pattern making is an experimental process since the resultant designs cannot be predicted by the artist.

Patterns can be used as designs for paper bags, clothes, greeting cards, fringes, garlands or tassels, and pop-up. There are several techniques in pattern making. Examples of pattern making techniques are Sponging, Veining, Blowing, Spraying, Spattering, Stippling, String Pulling, Wax-resist/crayon batik, Marbling, Scribbling, Rubbing-in, Rubbing-out etc.

Sponging

This technique of pattern making involves the use of sponge as the principal tool for the creation of the patterns. The sponge can be laid or spread on the material (such as paper or cloth). The paint or ink is then dabbed with foam at the open areas of the sponge. The paint or ink can also be sprayed onto material after laying the sponge. The nett patterns or diamond shaped patterns of the sponge would appear on the material. Another technique is immersing the sponge in the paint or ink and rolling it on the material or paper to create the patterns.

Spattering

This form of pattern making involves the application of paint in a liquid form by splashing the paint on the surface of the material to create interesting patterns. Sometimes, the tips of brushes are loaded with colour or ink and the thumb is used in splashing the colour onto the material such as paper. The splashing of the coloured pigment or paint can be done with a piece of foam or brush loaded with paint.

Spraying

This is the application of paint or colour spilt through the tiny holes of a spray diffuser or atomiser. The spray can or container is filled with different coloured pigments or ink and is sprayed one at a time onto the material in several ways to create interesting designs. Surfaces of
Papers for writing calligraphy and other forms of wall hangings are decorated with spray patterns in varieties of colours.

Stippling

This is the use of a drawing tool or implement in creating series of dots in an organised pattern on a material. Marking tools such as pencils, crayons, markers and pens can be used in creating interesting patterns of dots on paper and cards. This form of pattern making can be used to decorate the background of cards to be used for greeting cards, certificates and other forms of wall hangings. Pointed metallic tools such as gouges, chisels and texturing nails can be used in creating decorative textures in the form of dots on backgrounds of wood, clay and leather.

String Pulling

This is the technique of creating patterns on a material by the use of strings. These strings are immersed in a colour pigment or ink. The coloured string is then pulled for the colours to spill on the material to create decorative patterns on the paper.

Scribbling

This method of creating patterns involves the creation of random abstract lines with a marking tool, generally without ever lifting the drawing device off of the paper. The scribbles which are often created with different coloured marking tools result in eye-catching and attractive patterns on papers. These can be used in producing designs on paper bags, garlands, greeting cards etc.

Paper marbling

This is a method of aqueous (water) surface design used in producing patterns. The patterns are the result of colour usually, oil paint poured to float on either the surface of plain water or a viscous solution known as size, and then carefully transferred to an absorbent surface, such as paper or fabric. It is often employed as a writing surface for calligraphy, and especially book covers and endpapers in bookbinding and stationery. It can also be used as designs on papers to be used in producing paper bags.

Wax Resist/ Crayon Batik

This form of pattern making involves the use of wax in resisting parts of a paper or fabric and either applying colour or ink on the entire surface of the material. After the paint or ink is dried on the surface of the material, the wax is scratched off or removed to create interesting patterns. Another technique is applying the waxed design on the surface of the material and immersing it in a paint, dye or ink solution. The wax is freed off the material after the paint or dye is dried to create the patterns. Coloured crayons can be used for creating attractive patterns on materials before paint, dye or ink is applied.