15 Minute Practice · art · design · tips and tricks · tutorial

Creating Freehand Pattern

“You must love the process of creating. And not just the end result. And especially not the affirmation.” –Jenny Lee, daddysangbass.com

woodland mushroom

I began my 15 Minute Practice painting and painting and painting faces like my ife depended on it. That was for the first and second year of the practice due to my fascination with faces. This year though, I intend to explore and encourage my curiosities + fascination on creating other than the ever interesting faces.

This month, I commenced with the idea and decided to go for designing patterns because I just love it! And since I will only have fifteen minutes to do this, I went for freehand design.

In a few days of sharing my explorations on Instagram, a friend ask this question:

“Do you still sketch first or paint them straight out of your imagination?”

I responded,

” I’m painting them straight from imagination because I set a timer when I do it, for 15 minutes only. So it’s just a little bit of asking myself what inspires me today or looking around for anything that will be interesting at the moment and it’s “just do it.” 

That was pretty honest and at the same time makes me cringe a bit when I have read it again. The thing is, however true that was for my first few days of making patterns, almost all the time for almost a month now, that is not how I have been doing it.

For that reason, incase you wanted to try this simple practice, I am going to share a simple process that I have unconsciouly designed along the way.

  1. Look around you. What is inspiring. What caught your attention. Pick at least 1-3 things.
  2. Take a second look at the object(s). This time a little closer. Be aware of its shape and form. What shape is prominent.
  3. In your sketchbook or any paper, without too much thinking or guessing, draw the object(s). Make it simpler.
  4. Decide what colors to use. Make it simpler. Choose a few colors.
  5. In your sketchbook, make a trial painting for the object(s) chosen.

    compressed step by step
    Simplified drawing and painting
  6. If there is more than one item, choose which object shall be the main feature of the design. That will be the first thing to be painted and then the second and the third.
  7. Set the timer for for fifteen minutes. Press start and just do it. Enjoy the process. remember, no one is watching. You have the power to decide to show your work afterwards.
  8. M1
    Painting the feature element first.
    Add the second item.

    Finally, add the third item. 

9. And you’re done! 🙂 Repeat the next day.

Notes: It is up to you which size of paper you would like to work with. Bigger paper means bigger way of painting things. And incase the timer buzzed and you are not yet done, just continue and finish your piece. However, if you want to build a habit of creating everyday, don’t be trapped and spend too much time working with your first piece. Instead, just let it be whatever it has been when the timer buzzed and try again the next day. You don’t want to stress yourself with this practice. It was meant to be enjoyed and done for the sake of the process of creation + to build a habit of creating everyday.

I hope you’ll give it a try. It’s fun!

Rooting for you,





Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s