Last updated on December 1st, 2022
Surface patterns are amazing artworks that people like to wear on clothes and have them around on a variety of things. But if you are a surface pattern designer, you can win clients only when your patterns are unique. Your presentation of the work must also be impressive. Designhill conducted a session where pattern designer and art specialist Joao Pedro Incerti spoke on different aspects of surface patterns.
A pattern designer takes inspiration from nature and other things to create a unique pattern. This art mesmerizes due to repetition on an attractive art across the surface in a special way. Because of those patterns, this form of art is always in demand by clients.
However, many budding surface pattern designers are unable to impress clients. They have little idea as to what it takes to win over clients for regular assignments from them.
Designhill conducted an AMA on the topic: The Secret To Designing Unique And Engaging Surface Patterns. Joao Pedro Incerti, the pattern design specialist, was the guest speaker who discussed different aspects of the art. He shared his views on different pattern design trends and their importance, besides giving tips to create unique and engaging patterns.
About Joao Pedro Incerti
Joao Pedro Incerti is an Art Specialist at Farm and also appeared in WGSN. His famous project is a pattern called “Borogodo”. This project was the best seller in Brazil and worldwide! Lupita used this art on her Reveille last year. and celebrities like Gwen Stefani! Dressed this pattern.
In this post, we have shared the session’s video and transcript in the form of Q/As where you will be learning everything about surface patterns.
Transcript: Here Is What You Must Know About Designing Your Unique And Engaging Surface Patterns
Designhill: What your creative journey looked like and how did you begin, you know designing textiles?
Joao Pedro Incerti: I always like to draw. Since my childhood, I was always a draw worker. When I was in high school, I decided to work in fashion. But I was never so into fashion, like to know brands and stylists, and Gucci and Chanel because I was raised on a farm with cows and chickens.
When I was older, I started working in a brand and doing the stage in college. There, I started doing patterns, learning Photoshop, and everything. I started my career as a parent designer on the farm.
Designhill: What is your inspiration?
Joao Pedro Incerti: My creative process is not very difficult. I think what I want to do is to create elements such as animals. I think the difficult part is to think about new stuff. We have a really big team on the farm and have a lot of artists. At every collection, we join together and we create briefings and everyone gives their suggestions. I think this is the best way to generate creative ideas. We join all the minds together. I think this is the secret to innovation.
Designhill: What are some popular trends that are going on in the pattern industry?
Joao Pedro Incerti: I have this print that shows bananas with tigers and pirates. Yes, tiger prints are very much a trend. But I think the tiger print pattern is going away soon.
Patchwork as a trend
I see a lot of patchwork coming as a trend. And, I love to see people mixing everything. A lot of rain does patchwork and like Prada mixes it, but everyone is mixing patterns, which is a big trend. Tie-dyes was a trend but I don’t want to tie-dyes.
I feel people going a little bit less on brains and more on our movement. We have this to the instincts movements, I think people are going into classic prints too. But I do not think a lot of different stuff is happening at the same time. It is hard to say about trends.
But I don’t believe very much in trends and patterns. I think we can always create something that is not trendy. Still, we can make people like it. I think trends are also dangerous. People first use it and then they do not want to use it anymore. So, I think the classic is always better.
Designhill: How to get noticed by big companies so they can know and buy your patterns?
Showcase your work on Instagram
Joao Pedro Incerti: Instagram is the key to success today. After all, you also found me on Instagram. This visual platform is probably the best place to showcase your work and to grow fast. You can grow fast because people will like it and they will share. But to create a good portfolio, be original otherwise no one will buy your work. Also, you have to be consistent in your work and offer something that the others don’t have.
If you have original work, we are going to buy it, and we will see you on Instagram. I think Instagram is the best way. Also, you can send mass messages, emails, and everything is very easy to do on Instagram. People are accessible every time.
So, do your portfolio online and don’t be ashamed of it. Sometimes I don’t like a pattern and I do not want to post it. But when I do post it, people like it and share it.
Designhill: How do you choose the colors you will work with?
Joao Pedro Incerti: We create some color palettes by using the best colors and with the help of a color team that specializes in colors. They create a color palette and we rework our colors. So, I can make a pattern in a color and they can change it to make something new.
I think there is no worse and no better color and patterns. There are two different patterns that go for two different kinds of customers. Everything has a reason to be there. We have this color team, which makes miracles sometimes.
Designhill: How do you present your arts to fabric designers or fashion designers?
Joao Pedro Incerti: I do not have this experience of sending my art to clients because I always work for fun. But I am used to receiving designers and students. I have seen a lot of studios, Brazilian ones and also international ones. We usually don’t like when they simply scan it. For instance, if you are showing a drawing, they just scan it. Instead, it is better to finish the pattern. It should not be like you scan it and it is done.
Edit the pattern and picture for textile
For instance, I have this banana with a pattern. I can’t just scan this banana picture and call it a pattern. Instead, we have to edit the drawing. You will have to change colors and make everything better because we are talking about textiles. It’s different from the paper. I would say that you finish the pattern in printing on textile.
When I see a pattern in studios, it’s 100% better when it is on textiles. This is because the clothes have movements. It is not flat like the paper.
I think it’s best to show the patterns on the textile.
But if you’re sending the patterns online, send the low quality, if you don’t trust the client. We have students who work with us for a long time. They send us files that we are not supposed to copy or use without buying. If you trust your clients then it is not a problem.
Also, send your patterns with a good mock-up. If you do not send a mock-up, clients will probably not buy a print. Send your application for print with its mock-up. But if you don’t trust me, I think I would send it in low quality. A good application like you get you had to do a good markup. This way, they can see how the patterns look on different clothes.
Designhill: What is the number one factor that plays a role in making a designer’s voice to be heard nowadays?
Designer’s background matters today
Joao Pedro Incerti: I think nowadays, mostly we care about not just the design but also about the designer’s life. We want to know where the designer comes from. We consistently find out the designer’s background and identity. Today, it is not only what the artist does, but also what the designer stands for. They want to know the context of everything.
Nowadays, we do a lot of collaboration. We don’t just buy art we are more into doing collaborations. For example, we collaborate with someone who is inspiring as a person and not just as a designer.
Designhill: How do you deal with creative blocks?
Have the will to do the work
Joao Pedro Incerti: I think it’s about not having the will to do the work such as designs and patterns. For instance, we may get tired and do not want to work. We do not have the will to do the stuff And it is easy to get inspiration from the internet. It’s my faith inspiration. You can get inspired by anything but we don’t have the joy anymore. Everything’s so sad. We are seeing a lot of side stuff.
I think we are not being productive because we don’t get the energy to do that. I think about it. I would say try to forget that you are not doing well. You should stop looking at the stuff on Instagram. Sometimes, Instagram can make us very anxious. At the start of parenting, I was not doing anything. I didn’t have energy. A solution could be to get dressed. That helps me. It is like the fake normal day when you get dressed.
Designhill: What are your thoughts on floral patterns?
Joao Pedro Incerti: I am very used to prints with no flowers. Many of my prints involve non-flower patterns such as people jumping and doing acrobatics.
But, I did love flowers because this pattern is just so classic. I love it and I can show you some flower patterns. For instance, this is my mom wearing a flower pattern. I think flowers are forever. You can spend all day looking at flowers. They are so pretty. I bought a flower for myself during the parenting. I have never had a flower in my house but was so in love with it. They will never go away they are classics.
Designhill: How can somebody be productive?
Make designs that you like
Joao Pedro Incerti: I would say, try a little more and make stuff that people don’t ask you to do. Sometimes, do something that you do not have to think so much about. For example, you can search for traditional patterns and recreate them as an exercise. We have so many of them on Pinterest if you want to search for them. We have so many traditional identities of patterns.
For example, we have Chinese or Tommy’s African patterns. You will learn a lot of stuff for doing prints that are not traditional. For example, this pattern shows people dancing and it is not a traditional pattern. But if you look in details then you will find that I did many things here. I learned from traditional arts and means you see the structure and flowers, etc. You can compare and learn things. If you are not being productive, you can just try to learn something.
Designhill: What skills do you think are necessary to have in order to become a textile designer that specializes in developing fabric prints for the fashion market?
You don’t need hand-drawing skills
Joao Pedro Incerti: Most people think you’ll have to know how to draw. But that is not true. I have not drawn my prints by hand. They are made on the computer. The prints you draw on the computer are imagery. It is image manipulation.
But it is always better to know how to draw. I think the most important thing about it is to know how to use Photoshop. Many prints I did were all made by Photoshop.
It is very much easier to draw on the computer. And I think everyone can do this. You cannot do pattern design. without using computers. Also, you have to know how to use Photoshop or Illustrator, etc. But I don’t like to stay in Illustrator. You need to draw something to learn how to draw on the computer, you can draw a mask, a word by putting them in an image. There’s no need to have great skills. Just learn from what people are thinking and creating. Then, do that in your way.
So, consider these crucial tips when you are going out to create unique and engaging surface design patterns.
If you are a surface pattern designer, you can start creating and selling your pattern art using the Designhill marketplace. Start your shop at PrintShop by Designhill to display your artworks and sell them.
Surface pattern design is an attractive art that the designers should create by keeping some of its basics in mind. The expert designer Joao Pedro Incerti advises getting inspiration from everywhere. Have a closer look at the ongoing pattern design trends but recreate and make them your own. Also, actively post your pattern creations on Instagram and other social media.