You can find the finished pattern for this video here: Watermelon
In this one, I designed the whole pattern in PCStitch instead of making a sprite and importing it. I don’t often use PCStitch from scratch since other programs have more robust drawing tools, but in this case half the stitches were special stitches and the full stitches by themselves wouldn’t look anything like the finished piece.
Originally I didn’t like working this way since it requires me to be super precise without a reference image, but now that have more practice with the tools, I think it’s not as bad as I had thought. I also found this program that lets you change the opacity of a window so now I can have a reference image behind PCStitch which is a huge help. It’s called Ghost-It but it’s kind of old and I’m worried it might not work forever. If any of you know of a newer program that does the same thing, comment on the video and I’ll check it out.
It’s kind of hard to describe my decision process here. I didn’t really have a plan going in. I was just playing with shapes and trying to get the angles to work in a way that makes it readable at this small scale.
Readability is one of those things that I constantly worry about when designing patterns. How recognizable is this mass of stitches as a watermelon? Would adding more detail help or would it just make it worse? What parts of watermelons are the most important for people to be able to recognize it as a watermelon?
I guess these questions aren’t nearly as pressing when dealing with something like a watermelon which is pretty distinct, but they’re more important when the subject is similar to other things, like a specific breed of dog or species of flower.
This is especially difficult with people. I’ve been doing a few realistic human projects over on Fiverr and oh it is so much harder to make a human recognizable in a small scale. I’ve had to say no to certain portraits of some celebrities just because they would end up looking so generic, a regular dude with regular hair and a normal expression won’t be recognizable as Chandler from Friends with only a 50×50 grid and just full stitches.
I think I’m starting to understand caricature artists in a really roundabout way.