One day I had the sudden urge to draw flamingos. Not entirely sure why, probably because I had been reading about where to see flamingos in the wild. I have been lucky enough to see them in the Camargue in France and also across great salt lakes of the Atacama Desert in Chile.
They like to keep their distance though so all my photos of wild flamingos are of pinky smudges that could be a flamingo if you squinted a bit. So to draw flamingos I needed some decent reference pics – I love to use Unsplash for royalty-free images and they have an abundance of beautiful flamingo photographs.
After finding my reference photos, I drew four different flamingos using a combination of watercolour paint, pink ink, and a black fine tip pen.
Now that I had this little group of pink birds I just knew they had to go into a pattern design, and not just any pattern design but one that really did them justice!
So what goes really well with flamboyant flamingos? Rainbows, pink clouds, frangipanis and sparkles ofcourse!
Using watercolour paint, I created some rainbows which I scanned and then enhanced the colours in Photoshop. I also used my own photos of clouds and frangipanis, and added some white hand-drawn sparkles and voila – a pattern was born!
My young daughter went a bit nuts when she saw the final design, mostly as it was pink and had flamingos and rainbows – a winning combination!
As she was about to grow out of her swimsuit I had the brilliant idea to get this flamingo pattern design printed on sunsafe swimwear for her.
Off I went to Printful and a rash shirt and leggings were ordered with my new pattern design which I named Flamingo Fantasy. The outfit arrived just in time for our family trip to Italy in summer last year – it fit her perfectly and looks so much fun when playing at the beach and pool!
I just realised why I was googling where to see wild flamingos – because I discovered a few places in Italy where they live, and drumroll…. we visited one of these salt lakes on our holiday – so here is my most recent ‘flamingos in the wild’ photo..
Flamingo Fantasy would be super fun on swimwear or kid’s clothing – if you can sew you can buy it on a range of fabrics from Cloth Cuts or if you are thinking this would be perfect for your business it is also available for licensing woo!
I hope you enjoyed this little story into how I created my Flamingo Fantasy pattern design and where my inspiration came from.