Friday, October 31, 2014

keep it freaky

Before the night is over, here's one last halloween wish. Personally, I've seen enough sugar skulls and day the the dead stuff, to last me a lifetime. But have no fear, once that clock ticks past midnight tonight, you will wake to jingle bells on the radio. 

Hope you saved enough of the good bars for yourself ;)

Friday, October 24, 2014

the dreaded letter X

Anybody that decides to take on an alphabet, knows it's there…lurking at the end, the possibilities far from endless. It's just a crappy letter. Here's the laundry list of possibilities:

1. xylophone - the obvious choice… kid friendly and potentially colorful. Nobody is surprised at that choice.
2. x-ray - gives you a few more possibilities in terms of settings, characters, etc. My friend and fellow happy happy artist, Lauren (Minco) Lowen did a fabulous job with this (yup, she got stuck with this crap letter, too)…check it out here
3. somebody named Xavier - yeah.
4. Xerox machine - this may have worked better for kids back in the 80's.

So there you have it. I may have missed a few obscurities, but as far as the english language goes, that's about it. Sooooo, I decided to loosen up the interpretation of the letter and include words that have an X somewhere in them. Muuuch easier. There's a few not so hidden X's in there, can you find them? 

Check out the entire collaborative gallery of our happy happy alphabet right here!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

enough rain already.

The rain just won't give up here in New England the last few days, making it seem like the middle of November, rather than the nice crisp fall days of October. I've always hated the heavy gray skies of next month! On the other hand, I'm starting to burn out on this whole inktober thing, so maybe November isn't such a bad idea ;)

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

new york, new york

…"the Bronx is up and the Battery's down, the people ride in a hole in the ground." Know the song? Being a fan of old movie musicals and New York, it's one of my favorites. Anyway, I wanted to add some more lettering pieces that included photographic backgrounds to my portfolio. It seems to be a pretty popular style lately, so why not? I took this pic a few years back from the top of the Empire. It was a bitter cold day in December, but we inadvertently timed it just right to see the sunset while we were up there. My basic idea here was to make it look like some sort of an ad for NYC tourism. Hopefully, you got the idea before I spelled it all out! The heart it in the lower right corner, is a play on the infamous, "I <3 NY campaign. Sorry Mr. Glaser!!

holiday tote bag giveaway!

Need a new tote bag? And who doesn't with Christmas just around the corner ;) All the girls in the happy happy art collective are running giveaways for the next few weeks and now it's my turn. All you have to do is like our Facebook page and follow this link to our website and enter. Easy peasy and good luck!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


I recently had the opportunity to work with a shop that I have loved for a very long time, the Dutch site, Psikhouvanjou! It is filled to the brim with the most gorgeous and sweet toys and home decor for kids that I have ever seen…everything from Helen Dardik to Tiago Americo, to beautiful Djeco products and so much more. They were looking to rebrand their site and newsletter with some new fun and fresh characters and I was happy to oblige! I am hoping it will become a long standing relationship. Check them out here!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


Yep, I've jumped on the inktober bandwagon. Ink has never been my thing, but I'm kinda enjoying it for a change from the pencil to vector routine, a.k.a., rinse dry and repeat! So far I've been using a pentel pocket brush, tomboy brush marker and a rapidograph (#2…look it up kids ;). Not sure if I will get sick of it, but I'm sticking to a halloween/fall theme for as long as I can stand it. How about you? Are you doing it? Please leave a comment so I can follow your progress (if I don't follow you already!). I'm pretty much only going to post on instagram @zippyboro… there's also a link on the right column here. Happy inking!! 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

happy happy W and alphabet bloopers

Well if you follow happy happy art collective (and if you don't, why don't you?!?!), you know that we are at long last, nearing the end to our collaborative happy happy alphabet (check out the entire gallery of letters so far right here!). It's been a really fun project, seeing what cleverness my happy buddies come up with week after week. This month, I was assigned the letter "W" and I thought, great, no biggie…should be lots of good possibilities, it's not like "X" (which happens to be my next letter, ughhhh), or so I thought. For my contributions, I've continually tried to do something a little unexpected, i.e. not your typical kid's alphabet letter images, so doing a whale was not in the cards. But maybe it should have! I kinda struggled to come up with something clever and believe it or not, here are some of the things I considered doing. Let's call them bloopers:

1. My first stupid thought was to do Washington. As in George. Standing on a map of…..wait for it…Wisconsin?! hmmmmm. Seemed so cool at first. Moving on, but keeping with the same theme…
2. Washington as a witch. Seasonal, right? errrrrrr, yeah. No.
3. Washington eating watermelon…"Ever wonder if Washington wolfed watermelon with his wooden teeth? ooooookkkkkkkay. Maybe not.
4. A witch eating watermelon. Not a horrible idea, but we have a predetermined palette we have all been using for this alphabet, and with no green at my disposal, I wasn't sure I could pull it off.
5. Something involving waffles. Hey, I like eating them, but drawing them, not so much.
6. A woman wearing a giant white wig, with lots of W words stuck int it. I was intrigued, but wasn't sure how it would immediately look like a wig vs. just a crazy white hairdo? hmmmm… which brought me back to…

7. WASHINGTON WEARING his WHITE WIG!!! With WOODEN teeth!! With a WOODPECKER WHITTLING away at it! And a WORM sticking out!! GENIUS, right?!?!?!? Well, I thought so and actually worked up several sketches. And then, I showed my art director. One look from my 14 year old daughter and aspiring designer, and she said, and I quote, "You have lost your mind." Completely serious and walked away in silence. Crap. Do over.

So this is where I ended up. I took the woodpecker and thought about who he could marry in the wintry woods and who else could be in attendance. I thought about a woodchuck, but I don't think everyone has a visual picture in their heads of what a humanized woodchuck looks like, so I went the worm route. I thought this might be kinda cute considering he might be in the bird's food chain, plus he could be small, letting the happy couple be the stars.

So, there you have it. How I got from point A to point W. Now on to the cursed letter X. I still think I should have gone for Washington… what do you think?