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how to make a pattern

learn how to draw patterns step by step

Learn how to make a pattern in this easy drawing tutorial!

patterns in art Abstract Painting by Thaneeya McArdle

Once you learn how to make patterns, you can use them in your art in all kinds of ways.

For instance, take a look at the colorful painting to the right. This painting is basically row after row of different patterns!

Patterns show up in all kinds of art, from contemporary abstract art to tribal folk arts from various cultures around the world. You can see more examples of patterns in art here.

When you look at patterns, like the ones in the painting on the right, you may (falsely) assume they are so complex that you could never draw them on your own - let alone come up with your own similar designs… Well, get out your pencil cause I'm gonna show you how to do it!

By the end of this lesson, you'll be able to draw a pattern like this in no time:

How to draw a pattern

Even the most complex patterns start out easy. In this drawing tutorial, you'll find out how patterns are made, so that you can add them to your own art.

Remember: All patterns start out simply.

First, let's take a look at several examples of very basic patterns:

dots

row of dots

circles

row of circles

raindrops

row of raindrops

waves

water pattern

loops

loops

right angles

pattern

crosses

pattern

squiggle

pattern

Any of the above patterns can be the starting point for creating more detailed patterns – all you have to do is add onto it!

Now I'll show you how to make cool patterns - all starting with a single dot!

Click on each pattern to jump to that tutorial:

Pattern 1:

how to make a pattern

 

Pattern 2:

how to make a pattern

 

Pattern 3:

how to make a pattern

After you've mastered how to make a pattern by starting with a single dot, learn how to make a pattern using other starting shapes – such as the pattern below, which began as a single wave!

Pattern 4:

create a pattern

 

Let's begin!

First, I'll show you how to draw this pattern step by step:

how to make a pattern

 

On your paper, draw a row of dots:

how to  make a pattern

If you need help keeping your dots in a straight line, use lined paper, graph paper, or a ruler.

Now, add raindrop shapes around each dot:

how to make a pattern

Next, add another raindrop shape around the raindrop shapes you just drew:

how to make a pattern

At the top of each double raindrop, add a small circle:

how to make a pattern

Draw a little curl sprouting from the top of each circle, twisting to the left:

how to make a pattern

Now draw a curl sprouting to the right:

how to make a pattern

Voila! You've just drawn a pattern! That wasn't so hard, was it?

As you can see, drawing patterns is simply a matter of drawing basic shapes, one after the other, all in a row.

You can even draw each shape in a different color, or color them all in when you're done.

Okay, now we're gonna make this pattern:

how to draw a pattern

It's more complicated than the previous pattern, but remember: it all starts with a single dot!

Let's begin!

Draw a row of dots:

how to draw a pattern

Now draw a small circle around each dot:

how to draw a pattern

Draw a bigger circle around the circles you just drew:

how to draw a pattern

Now draw flower petal shapes around each circle:

how to draw a pattern

Under each flower, draw a small circle:

how to draw a pattern

In between each flower, draw 2 raindrop shapes. One raindrop shape will veer left and the other will veer right.

how to draw a pattern

Underneath each circle, draw a spiral squiggly:

how to draw a pattern

In between each spiral squiggly, draw a small circle:

how to draw a pattern

Around the circles you just drew, draw bigger circles:

how to draw patterns step by step

Draw three flower petal shapes sprouting from the bottom of each circle:

how to draw patterns step by step

Congratulations! You've just drawn your second pattern!

Now let's do one more pattern that starts out as a single dot. This is what you're going to draw:

how to draw patterns step by step

Let's begin!

Draw a row of dots (you're getting good at this by now!):

how to draw patterns step by step

Draw a small circle around each dot:

how to draw patterns step by step

Draw another circle around each circle:

how to draw patterns step by step

Draw a very small circle at the top and bottom and left and right of each circle:

how to draw patterns step by step

Draw a curve connecting each small bottom circle to the one next to it:

patterns in art

Draw a curve connecting each small top circle to the one next to it:

create a pattern

In between each circular shape, on the bottom draw 2 raindrop shapes: 1 leaning left and 1 leaning right:

create a pattern

In between each circular shape, on the top draw 2 upside-down raindrop shapes: 1 leaning left and 1 leaning right:

easy pattern tutorial

On top and on bottom, draw a row of "bumps" or "humps":

easy pattern making tutorial

Awesome – you just made another pattern!

I bet you're starting to really get the hang of how to make a pattern now, so let's try something different. Instead of starting with a row of dots, we'll start with a wave to draw this pattern:

easy pattern making tutorial

Let's begin!

Draw a wave:

create a pattern

On top of that wave, draw another wave:

how to create a pattern

On the point of each top wave, draw a loop:

how to create a pattern

In between each loop, draw a circle:

create a pattern

Underneath your bottom wave, draw a straight line:

create a pattern

Draw a series of vertical lines connecting the bottom wave and the straight line:

create a pattern

Draw another straight line at the bottom:

easy pattern making tutorial

Draw a row of circles below the straight line:

easy pattern making tutorial

Cool! You're becoming a real champ at pattern-making!

Now that you know how to make a pattern, you can create all kinds of patterns off the top of your head.

Just remember that a pattern is simply a repetition of shapes, and to make complex patterns, you just go step by step, one shape at a time.

For inspiration, look at books that contain different patterns, such as Mayan, Japanese, Indian, African… every culture around the world incorporates its own set of distinct patterns in some way or other - in their architecture, textiles, artwork, etc. Let them be a springboard for your own unique patterns!

yellow

See more patterns in art!

Now that you know how to make patterns, try this fun Henna Hand Designs Art Project where you'll make a self-portrait of your hands using abstract patterns and designs!

Click to return to the Abstract Art Table of Contents, where you can...

Learn about abstract art!

If you like my abstract art, check out my printable Abstract Coloring Book with 20 pages of intricate abstract line art to fill in with COLOR!

For more abstract designs, check out my printable Mandala Coloring Book, with 23 pages of mandalas that you can color!


Draw Groovy, a fun new step-by-step drawing book by Thaneeya McArdle, to be published by F+W Media

Buy Draw Groovy from Barnes and Noble Buy Amazon Button Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

 

www.dickblick.com


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