Have you ever wondered how to make an Art Deco fan pattern in Illustrator? In the following tutorial, you'll learn how to create an Art Deco fish scale pattern in Illustrator, in a couple of steps. Once you have finished creating the Art Deco geometric pattern, you'll be able to design your own with ease.
What You'll Learn in This Art Deco Geometric Pattern Tutorial
- How to create an Art Deco fish scale design
- How to convert your scale design into an Art Deco pattern vector in Illustrator
1. Create a New Document
Press Control-N to create a New Document.
Set the Width and Height to 850 px. Select RGB for the Color Mode and set the Raster Effects to Screen (72 ppi), title the file 'Art_Deco_Fish_Scale_Pattern', and then click Create.
Enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid).
Now that your document is set, let's see how to create an Art Deco fish scale design in Illustrator.
2. How to Create an Art Deco Fish Scale Design
For this Art Deco pattern vector tutorial, I have decided to go with a fish-scale wave design. Let's start creating the geometric design.
Select the Ellipse Tool (L), with a black stroke of 12 pt, and draw a circle of about 260 px diameter. Then pick the Selection Tool (V), select the circle shape, hold down the Alt key drag to duplicate the shape, and place it next to the other. Then duplicate the circle again and position the third circle into a triple circle Venn diagram, as seen below.
Now let's expand the circle strokes. Select All (Command-A), to select all three circles. Then Object > Expand, check the Fill and Stroke, and click OK.
Open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder), and select the Divide option to divide and trim the overlapping shapes wherever the lines intersect.
Using the Selection Tool (A), select and delete the extra shapes around the fan shape.
Apply Merge from the Pathfinder panel to merge all the shapes.
This is the beginning of our Art Deco wave pattern. Let's move on to create the fan pleats.
Grab the Line Segment Tool (L), and draw a 5pt Weight stroke line, running down the middle of the fan shape.
Take the Rotate Tool (R) and set the blue reference point at the bottom of the line segment. We need to duplicate the line to the right side of the fan.
The fastest way is to hold down the Alt key and drag. You can duplicate the line a few times after, using the shortcut of repeating the action. So use the shortcut Command-D to Transform Again, three times. This will duplicate the line segment around the fan, as shown.
Next, we must flip and duplicate the four line segments from the right to the left.
Select the four line segments on the right using the Selection Tool (V), and grab the Reflect Tool (O).
Set the blue reference point on the centered line segment. Hold down the Alt key to duplicate and mirror the four line segments to the left.
Now, let's bend the design.
Group (Command-G) all the line segments. Effect > Warp > Shell Upper. Set the Bend to 39%, and click OK.
Object > Expand Appearance. Using the Scissors Tool (C), cut the line segments along the fan's edge. Then use the Direct Selection Tool (A) to select and clear the outer line segments.
Our easy Art Deco pattern needs a few more touches. Let's add some decor to the fan in a few steps.
Take the Rectangle Tool (M) and hold down the Shift key to draw a perfect square.
Then pick the Rotate Tool (R) and drag to rotate the square 90°. Use the Selection Tool (V) to move the square down to the top inner edge of the fan.
Grab the Direct Selection Tool (V) to move the top anchor point of the center line segment down to the bottom edge of our square.
Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid).
We will draw dots between the pleats. Use the Ellipse Tool (L), with a black Fill and null Stroke color. Hold down the Shift/Alt keys to draw a small circle in the center of our square.
After that, use the Rotate Tool (R) and set the blue reference point in the bottom half of the center line segment. Hold down the Alt key to duplicate, rotate the dot to the center between the pleats, and then release. Repeat this action along the fan pleats, as shown below.
Now that we have created the design, let's apply some color!
Use the Selection Tool (V) to select the shell shape, and give it a yellowish Fill color. You will notice that the inner gap will be filled as well. Just select it with the Direct Selection Tool (A) and delete the shape.
With the Selection Tool (V), grab the line segments and the square, and Object > Expand. Select Fill and Stroke and press OK.
Then Unite the elements from the Pathfinder panel.
Apply a Linear gradient of yellow to orange at a -90° angle, from the Gradient panel. Then Object > Arrange > Send to Back.
Select the remaining black dots, apply an orange color Fill, and then Group (Command-G) all the elements together.
Select the group. Hold down the Shift/Alt key to duplicate the group and move it over the top right-hand side of our group.
3. How to Convert the Fish Scale Design Into an Art Deco Pattern in Illustrator
Now it's time to create an Art Deco geometric pattern! Select both groups and Object > Pattern > Make.
Illustrator will give you a preview of the repeating pattern tile copies to help you align your objects.
Select the Tile Type to Grid. Set the Width to 260 px and Height to 280 px, and then you can click the Done button below the control panel to apply the changes.
The seamless Art Deco fan pattern will be added to the Swatches panel. After that, you can either delete or hide the shapes we used to create the fish scale design.
Let's add a background color to our pattern. Take the Rectangle Tool (M), and hold down the Shift key to draw a dark blue square to fill the artboard space.
Make a copy of the background square using the shortcuts Copy (Command-C) and Paste to Front (Command-F), and apply the Art Deco wave pattern swatch in the Swatches panel.
Congratulations! You're Done!
I hope you enjoyed this easy Art Deco fish scale pattern tutorial. Now you can apply these techniques to your future pattern designs. Feel free to stylize and make adjustments to the final Art Deco fan pattern design to give it your own touch.
To help find some great sources of inspiration, head over to Envato Elements.
Beautiful Art Deco Patterns From Envato Elements
Envato Elements is an excellent source of Art Deco tile patterns. Here's a short list of some popular pattern assets that you can find.
Art Deco Patterns (PSD, JPG)
Have a look at these Art Deco patterns that are available in gold, black, and white. Inspired by traditional 1920s Art Deco elements, each one of these ten patterns comes in high resolution, which makes them perfect for web or print design projects.
Art Deco Pattern Design (AI, EPS)
If you are looking for something with more of an edgy and geometric touch, have a look at this Art Deco tile pattern in black and gold.
Gold Line Art Deco Pattern Design Abstract (AI, EPS, JPG, PDF, PNG, PSD, SVG)
Looking for high-quality Art Deco tile pattern designs? This abstract design bundle might be a good option to try out. It comes in 24 Art Deco patterns and several usable formats.
Gold Line Art Deco Objects Border Design (AI, EPS, PDF, PNG, SVG)
Another option to help you create an easy Art Deco pattern is to use these geometric elements. You will be able to easily adjust and design high-quality concepts suitable for your business or personal needs.
Art Deco Pattern (AI, EPS, JPG)
Here's another set of Art Deco patterns that might help in your designs. This set has 30 vintage-style concepts suitable for all kinds of design projects.
Want to Know More?
There are loads of tutorials similar to this tutorial on how to create an Art Deco pattern in Illustrator. You can find them on Envato Tuts+. Have a look!
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