Tag Archives: Instructions

Tales of a Printer-Tour Detective


By Matthew Parker

I love exploring unusual places when I go on holiday. The well-known tourist sites are very impressive, but everyone goes there. You rarely get an insight into the true culture of a place.

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Automatic Repeat Patterns in Adobe AI

Are you interested in creating repeat patterns in Illustrator but find it difficult to make them work properly or you just can’t get them to look right? If you haven’t upgraded to CS6 yet, you don’t have the new pattern tool, which I’ve been drooling over ever since it was announced. Consider investing in a $25 online tutorial as an alternative until you’re able to upgrade.

In her tutorial, Laura Coyle explains with clear detail how to create block and half drop patterns while viewing changes live on your art board. It can still be a somewhat complicated or time-consuming process depending on your pattern, but Laura’s method alleviates a lot of the guesswork.

The $25 includes 12 short videos with lifetime access, 4 AI template files each for CS4, CS5, and CS6, and a PDF with written instructions from the video. I watched about 8 before the info was new to me, but if you’re newer to repeat patterns or just boggled by how to make them look good, I recommend the tutorial. And no, I’m not getting paid to endorse this. Just sharing my knowledge. 😉

If you plan to create a lot of patterns, I also recommend the books below to help you better understand how patterns work. I bought both on Amazon for under $20 each.

• Mastering the Art of Fabric Design by Laurie Wisbrun

• A Field Guide to Fabric Design by Kim Kight


Perfect Portfolio Photography Wrap Up

January 16th Lunar / Solar Creative hosted a workshop for photographing pieces for your portfolio. Here is a quick and dirty outline of what we went over.

1.  Have plenty of space to work, and be able to control any outside light coming in through windows.

2. You will need a table, a seamless background, some clamp-able work lights with daylight balanced bulbs, a tripod, and a bed sheet.

3. Use a camera with manual mode. (Learn how to use manual mode) shoot in RAW.

4. Set your backdrop up higher than you think you need to, you don’t want to be fighting with it later when you are framing your shots.

5. When you’re shooting set your ISO low (To avoid noise) and set your aperture between F/5.6 and F/8. Adjust your shutter speed with the light meter, and use your cameras self timer feature so you won’t be moving your camera when you take the photo.

6. Look at your photos closely, see where your highlights and  reflections are and make any adjustments with your lights. You can use a white sheet of paper to bounce light onto your objects as well.

7. Take your images into Photoshop or Lightroom to make any adjustments, or clean up any blemishes. (Save editing time by cleaning up your objects beforehand with a cloth or compressed air)