Looking towards my current practice, my area of study is focusing around landscape and finding the abstract (forms) in nature - predominantly within Mediterranean culture, with a hope to push this towards pattern design. To accompany my Pre Major Project, I shall be writing a short academic essay ("Investigative Study"). I feel it's important to follow and combine both theory and practice, to inform each other and push the development and innovative thinking.
For my Investigative Study, I shall be looking into areas surrounding surface pattern design and its integration with illustration. Illustrative approaches to surface pattern tend to focus on ideas of narrative, or the origins behind the pieces. They either illustrate the story behind the product, or around the actual depicted imagery. Most patterns, or product design pieces with surface design, carry an overall thematic area, which adds a sense of depth and extra layer to the piece; something driving the production element.
Some pieces are more about their functionality. Adding a feature of origin and narrative takes the product, pattern or piece one step further: It's not just about how you use the item, but how you perceive it; how it affects it's use and worth. It's about the relationship between the image and the story. Some products hint at a narrative, utilising their theme; others are necessarily a direct narrative, depicting a beginning, middle, and end.
Looking at surface pattern through the eyes and works of an illustrator, subverts our expectations of its traditions, and forces us to combine the two. I believe them to compliment each other. Without illustration, or textiles, or product design, there may not be surface pattern design.
I will be researching into the works of Kustaa Saksi, Yinka Shonibare, and Julie Verhoeven, as well as Martin Blanchard's work with hotel Casa Mae and Rug by GUR.
Check out my Pinterest boards, for a more visual understanding into my project!