Pattern Occurring View - kaleidoscopic

To this day there are not many things i love more than gazing into a kaleidoscope, watching the patterns occurring and shift.  Every turn makes a new and brilliant pattern. Such patterns are not designed they just happen due to the structure and movement.

As far as I'm concerned Alexander McQueen's Atlantis collection from Spring 2010 was avant-garde and pioneering in this field. The day I saw the runway shot from style.com was magical for me.  My eyes got wide in the same way as they did when I was a child gazing through the Kaleidoscope.  Now be sure of this, I am not saying these prints were not designed they truly were.  The symmetry of the human body is emphasized with the garments and their mirrored prints.  Since 2010 these Reflective photographic digital prints have been rehashed for every product group.  This is one of those trends that I feel the ship has finally sailed on.  Yes we all loved it and it was novel and radical, but now is over done, tired and burned out. I have even coined it as the 'poor-man's repeat'. As any tom, dick or harry can create a kaleidoscope print in minutes with photographic images.  To show how easy it is, I created a few using a simple App on my phone, when I was walking the dog today.  I guess... I just want to encourage talented textile and surface designers to look beyond the simple and get back to the craft of beautifully flowing print repeats and motif design.  You're better than that!

 

Pattern Occurring View - Boy's Sleepwear

It has been "scorchio" here in Seattle the past week,  hence I have one 'sleepless in Seattle' 4 year old.  Any excuse right! So one line of attack was to pop to my local Target store to find some summer pj's to replace the blanket sleeper onesies.  

I may just be having a hard time with my first born growing up, but I was almost brought to tears by the selection offered.  The first stumbling block is that, (for a good reason most houses are made of wood!) here in the USA children's sleepwear can't be cotton unless it is very form fitting. So most pj's are flame resistant polyester. Yuck!  I however get this and am totally willing to compromise on fabrication. However when it comes to good print design... that's where i'm not prepared to compromise! I truly believe good design and good taste needs to be nurtured from a young age.  Most children do (and probably should) get to pick there own clothes, but when the choices are so limited and overly 'gender' specific this makes my heart sink.   

I don't want to litter my blog with images of the poor options out there, so I am going to describe and you can link to Targets web sight if you really can't resist. Examples include the obvious licensed characters of Angry Birds, Marvel Super Heros, or the cliché conversational prints of skulls and ball games.  

So sad!  So as a print and pattern designer and consultant, here is what I am suggesting companies such as Target should be open to. More unique colours (not just blue and red) and fun conversational prints.  I know such companies do value design as they frequently partner with designers (such as Orla Kiely), but we have too start while they're young, if we want the next generation to value design and colour!  

Below are some of the better designs I have found out there, that at least are more playful and creative with those licensed characters and cliché's... but it's still a far cry from what it could be!

 

Flash Back–Anne Marie Jackson Design, Part 1

When I was back home in England recently, i dusted down some of my university work. It was a strange and awkward flash back, as it often is, looking back on your own work from over a decade ago. In this 3 part series i'll share 3 projects I did in my final year of university at CCAD. The First one 'Love and War', went on to win both the Royal Society of Arts 'AWI' and 'Textile Society Lucienne Day' awards and was quite on trend for it's concept and aesthetic back then.  I was the first student from my course to enter such a compition and really did have a bit of a fight on my hands to do so. Just to set the scene it was 2002 and Blair and Bush were hell bent on finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The World Trade Center Attack had just happened.  Times were quite unsettled. This project 'Love and War' was my little protest for peace.  It was fairly daring at that time, as many of the students textiles and surface designs were more traditional in their floral based, gentile concepts. In the end i produced over 35 prints for my 'Love and War' collection, taking a late 40's floral aesthetic and giving it a 21st century conversation about the state of the world. I've often prided myself on my ability to pick up on a trend bubbling under the surface and over the course of that year many other designers started playing with similar iconography, such as Suck UK's gun vase.

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War Concept- RSA winner of the Lucienne Day Print award and the Australian Wool Innovation 

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War Concept- RSA winner of the Lucienne Day Print award and the Australian Wool Innovation 

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War Drawing 2002

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War Drawing 2002

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War Design Development 2002

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War Design Development 2002

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War product Development 2002

Anne Marie Jackson Love and War product Development 2002

Playing Catch Up

Sounds odd but I am still playing catch up from my big trip home to England.  Yesterday I finally got the chance to chat with my agent about work i had done for summer and new fall trends. Below are some of my summer prints. Turned out rather good if i don't say so myself!  Fall is a super season for prints this year and next. Tweeds, plaids, chinoiserie and rug patterns are on my to do list.    Excited to get started.  

Also Yesterday I strolled past the Seattle Art Museum aka SAM and saw one of my designs for Joseph Joseph in their gift shop.  Exciting as they always have a great merchandise.  

 

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design

Anne Marie Jackson Design