Unique, hand-painted repeat patterns

Today, most print artists create artwork and THEN take the artwork into Photoshop, piecing elements together pleasingly to make a flowing repeat pattern.

Barbarian prints are made differently – in a rather old way, but a way I enjoy.

Back when there was no Photoshop or computers, repeat patterns were made by filling up the middle of paper, cutting up the paper and flipping the design basically inside-out. The rest of the pattern is then filled in to make a complete flowing pattern. It’s a little hard to visualize (and quite a mind-melter) but the below video illustrates this technique.

This rather ancient way is the way a Barbarian print is made. It is a bit of a scary process but I love the impromptu and hands-on nature of creating a pattern this way. It’s tactile and a bit like solving a puzzle. The result feels natural, not mechanical. It keeps me brave and keeps me loose. I feel pretty cool making them.

You may notice little idiosyncrasies in my patterns – I keep them there on purpose. I believe they should be enjoyed as they keep the handmade, human element alive.

Each Barbarian pattern is minimally edited in Photoshop and then made available on all kinds of products – from leggings, to phone cases to fabrics.

What I decide to paint on any given day depends on the season, what cool nature shows I’ve watched and what I’m reading. I love imagery that is bold and fun and compels people to be a little nicer to themselves and each other.

Here’s a quick video of a Barbarian print in process.

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Thanks for stopping by!