Shoal of Jellyfish

The underwater world holds many wonders and creatures, so extraordinary that they verge on being impossible. One of the more unusual is the jellyfish, which has no brain, heart, bones or eyes. Yet, with the rhythm of its pulsating bell it performs a truly mesmerising spectacle. The way they contract swiftly, then release, looks like a submerged beating heart. Deep in the abyss, these fascinating, almost sentient beings whisper alluring promises of the secrets of immortality.

This project was a part of my ongo­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion with Kidspat­tern. If you’d like to learn more about them please vis­it their web­site HERE. Alter­na­tive­ly, view the archive of our pre­vi­ous projects HERE, in which I dis­cuss in detail the his­to­ry and nature of our work.

All cloth­ing-mock­ups pre­sent­ed here are pro­vid­ed cour­tesy of Kidspat­tern and are used for visu­al­i­sa­tion pur­pos­es only.

This design is a part of a marine series inspired by the won­der­ful abun­dance of sea life. It cov­ers a total of 3 pat­terns com­mis­sioned for a client’s Spring-Sum­mer colour group aimed at boys. Here you may view the oth­er two accom­pa­ny­ing designs : Seashore Skies and Under­wa­ter Land­scape. Apart from the theme that runs across them, they’re also uni­fied by the same water inspired palette. It was com­posed by the trend and colour expert Kidspat­tern and con­sist­ed of a set of soft greens and blues con­trast­ed by a touch of rich, deep ultra­ma­rine.   

Above, you can view the first ver­sion of the pat­tern, which has the ele­ments in two medi­um range colours, scat­tered on a plain, white back­ground in a slight­ly over­size arrange­ment. The draw­ings are arranged in a free flow­ing, spa­cious man­ner to reflect the jellyfish’s pecu­liar, yet high­ly effi­cient way of loco­mo­tion. The base ele­ment remains the same, how­ev­er, its size varies to sug­gest a sense of dimen­sion­al­i­ty. Along­side this addi­tion­al lay­er­ing of the tilt­ing out­lines hints at the jellyfish’s translu­cent appearance.

This ver­sion was pur­chased by the client and used in their Spring-Sum­mer Col­lec­tion in a group aimed at boys. Fur­ther­more, this print was pop­u­lar enough to be used across all age groups includ­ing home­ware (blan­kets, bibs) and new­born (hats, baby grows). The colour palette, thus, remained soft, calm and universal.

Version 1

Next in the devel­op­ment, the jel­ly­fish was recoloured into white and placed on a medi­um, light blue back­ground. With this change the design now appears much more airy, effer­ves­cent and light. To mix it up, extra jel­ly­fish shapes have been added, which include a par­tial fill and an extra colour. 

This ver­sion of the pat­tern was visu­alised in a small­er size on a sim­ple top. The arrange­ment has it in a tran­si­tion­al, dynam­ic and spa­cious man­ner with the jel­ly­fish gath­er­ing at the top and bot­tom of the gar­ment. The ele­ments con­tin­ue to rotate around and vary in size.

Version 2

This pat­tern explores the breadth of the colour palette by set­ting the back­ground to medi­um light green. The jel­ly­fish remain in white, how­ev­er I’ve con­trast­ed this with the ultra­ma­rine accents. The arrange­ment is scat­tered and spa­cious. 

The back­ground colours for this pat­tern con­tin­ue to dark­en and now take the colour of this love­ly turquoise blue from the palette. The jel­ly­fish were recoloured into bold ultra­ma­rine. I also lay­ered details in white and pur­pose­ful­ly visu­alised it in an over­size man­ner. 

Version 3

Last­ly, it’s impor­tant that the design does work well on a dark back­ground, which in this case is ultra­ma­rine coloured. With this ver­sion I kept the design plain and over­sized. White jel­ly­fish with their mush­room-like bells appear all but mag­i­cal, wist­ful and ephemeral.

Product in Print

To con­clude this series, I’d like to share a col­lec­tion of quick snaps of the final use of this jel­ly­fish pat­tern in print. These items were pro­duced to launch the client’s over­all Spring-Sum­mer col­lec­tion and pro­mote it at trad­ing fairs.

On the left, please browse through client’s first cloth­ing sam­ples for their New­born group. Apart from body­suits these include baby acces­sories like blan­kets and bibs.

On the right, you may view exam­ples of the jel­ly­fish pat­tern in print on clothes aimed at old­er kids (up to 3 years old). I’ve includ­ed a few close-ups of the mate­r­i­al and oth­er prod­ucts like a hood­ed, light teal sum­mer jacket.

Please note that these images are pro­vid­ed cour­tesy of the client and Kidspat­tern and are used for port­fo­lio pur­pos­es only. 

“The real world is in a much dark­er and deep­er place than this, and most of it is occu­pied by jel­ly­fish and things. We just hap­pen to to for­get all that. Don’t you agree? Two-thirds of earth­’s sur­face is ocean, and all we can see with the naked eye is the sur­face: the skin.”

Haru­ki Muraka­mi, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle writer