The Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design

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The Ultimate Portfolio Builder

Next class: February 12 – March 16, 2018 

The Ultimate Portfolio Builder is an advanced seven-week online professional surface pattern design course, consisting of an intense five-week class followed by two weeks of design reviews.

This powerful course will give you all the tools and advice you need to grow your body of commercially viable work, refine and strengthen your professional design portfolio and give you the fast-track to trade show success.

Brought to you in association with Printsource New York, one of the top surface and textile design shows in the world, this course will provide you with exclusive insight to help you secure the right buyers for your work, deal effectively with clients, get trade show ready and discover the secrets to landing work you dream of.

This course includes:

Five weeks of exceptional in-depth teaching on various subject matter (objects, characters, nature, geometrics, typography and abstract), colour and media, the power of recolouring, designing for occasions, genre and style, audience and market and so much more

A series of fun creative design challenges to help you grow as a designer and build a strong, rounded portfolio

LIVE briefs from real companies including DENY DesignsCardmaking and Papercraft MagazineReally Good and others looking to sign the next big talent. They’ve already signed up a number of our students, could you be next?

A series of video based technical masterclasses from guest designers on typography, characters, photography, mixed media collages and more, to hone your professional design skills. Find out more on our Technical Workshops page

Invaluable individual work reviews from industry experts such as the fabulous Rachael Taylorand Janine Burrows so you can understand where you are now and how to move forward

Insight into the practicalities of managing a growing design studio

Trade show planning advice direct from Printsource New York

Opportunity to put questions to Rachael Taylor

Free access for 90 days to the top trend forecasting site WGSN


An incredible four-part creative brief from Printsource to help you attract the clients you want and the kind of work you dream of

Bonus material on managing your finances, how to be your own career strategist and thinking outside the box

Access to a huge library of textures to give your work depth and distinction

Access to exclusively styled room set and product images ready-made for you to render your designs on

selection of colour palettes intended to help you push your colour choices

one awesome global design community

And a whole lot more – this course really is jam-packed full of goodness!

Want more?

Check out our 50 reasons why this course is so AWESOME!

This is for you if:

You have completed Module 3 (although this is not a pre-requisite)

You want to expand and develop your professional portfolio to show your versatility as a designer

You want to learn more complex techniques for sophisticated and commercially-appealing surface pattern design

You want to connect with other established designers and learn from industry experts

You want to know how to secure top deals at trade shows and attract the right work

You want to generate more income from your existing designs and create a new body of work

You want to be pushed outside your comfort zone so you’re ready to handle any brief

You want to make it as a professional surface pattern designer.

Please note this course is not assessed but does include individual critique of your work. This requires you to submit work at the start of the 2nd week of class.

You will need to be proficient in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to get the most out of this course. Please note we do not offer technical guidance for any other software programmes (including free software).


Testimonials and successes

Lisa Lane (March 2016 class) explains what she found most valuable about this course, how it has benefited her career and why she would recommend it:

Here are a handful of words used by previous students to describe this module: a great investment / a fantastic course / wonderful in every way / an intense, highly focused course that will propel you to the next level / highly recommended for anyone serious about a career as a surface pattern designer jam packed with opportunities / totally motivating.


Course alumni have gone on launch their own design studios, win national awards, be featured in design books and on leading blogs and more. Many of our graduates are exhibiting at top shows, forming collectives, signing exciting licensing deals and enjoying lots of surface pattern success.

Read a handful of our class testimonials, check out our alumni successes and see what our students are getting up to!

Check out our Terms & Conditions. We strongly encourage you to read these before registering, as registering for one or more modules acknowledges acceptance of these Terms & Conditions.

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