Mossy Milieu



I’m not going to lie. Sometimes I’m just not into the theme of the weekly Spoonflower Challenge. This theme was “Mosses.” I wasn’t feeling particularly inspired and could only visualize a sea of green. I tend to be a tad literal-minded, so it often takes me a while to come around to a concept.

My creative muse for this theme showed up late to the party. It did show up, though. I was struck by an idea to include lichen and salamanders to break up the monochromatic moss patch. Once I latch onto an idea, it is hard to let it go — even if that means staying up late to see it through.

I created the moss spores – they look like miniature cattails – and lichen first, followed by the salamanders. For good measure, I threw in few random rocks. My idea was to create a pleasant layout with complementary colors and then fill in with a mossy pattern. I went down the wrong path for a bit trying to cover the entire background with hand drawn squiggly star shapes to indicate the moss. It just wasn’t resonating with me, though.

I put the design to bed for the night. I once again seriously reconsidered skipping this challenge, but I’m really stubborn. Ask anyone who knows me. It is a blessing and a curse.

I regrouped the next day. I deleted all the mossy texture. I added some soft organic shapes underneath the design elements and colored them a dark green. I then applied some “star moss” and filled in on top of those shapes. I allowed some of the moss to spill out into the open spaces so it resembled stars. I do love some sparkle.

I was fairly happy with this design, but it was still missing something. The background was a medium green, so I swapped it for the dark green I had chosen for the organic shapes, and I changed the shapes to the medium green. Tah dah! Sometimes the simplest change transforms a design. The contrast allowed the other design elements to really pop. I called it done and uploaded to the contest.

Nope. Sometimes you have to let it go.
Getting closer! This might just work!
By Jove! I think we've got it!

Oddly enough, the Design Challenges that I am the least interested in, result in some of my favorite designs. Perhaps its because they force me outside my comfort zone and away from my go-to design elements. In this print, I find that the salamander repeat somehow evokes a soothing sort of rhythm. And I love this as a wallpaper pattern design. Hope you like it, too!