Thursday, May 29, 2014

happy happy alphabet... M!

I have no idea why I thought of a milkman and a mailman, but it seemed like doing some humans would be a nice change of pace from all the animals that I contributed so far in Happy Happy Art Collective. By the way, CLEARLY I am not a copywriter! But somehow this one turned out with kind of a mid-century children's book feel, and I thought adding the copy was somewhat appropriate. Here below, you can see my rough sketches. I really don't do much more than this before taking a pic (on my phone, no less) and redrawing in illustrator. I hate tracing paper, so I usually keep erasing and redrawing until I come up with the basic gesture and look for the character. Be sure to check out the entire alphabet in our gallery over at happy happy!

Friday, May 23, 2014

for those who choose to celebrate...

not sure if this is another hallmark invented holiday, but hey.... have fun celebrating. Be safe out there!!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

happy spring and Surtex thoughts :)

Each month over at Happy Happy Art Collective, we have a group project. This month was to make a spring pattern. With such a dreary April, I was really in the mood for some spring flowers and of course, felt the need to add some friendly insects to the mix. Head on over to happy happy, and see what the girls have done so far!

In other ramblings, I just got home from walking Surtex the last 2 days. I had never done this before and it was, to say the least, a virtual eye candy overload! You really have to walk it to believe it. There is such a variety, from independent artists, to design studios, to group collectives, to agencies, all under one roof. In retrospect, I wish I had looked at more binders, look books, etc. toget a better idea of how much art is needed to make it worth your while, but I didn't want to get in the way of any potential business. I really enjoyed seeing how different artists handled their booth design and set up. I could see myself really enjoying that aspect of exhibiting there.

And if that wasn't enough, the National Stationery Show is adjacent, which is even bigger! I really wasn't prepared for that. Soooo much to take in. There is everything from major players like American Greetings and Madison Park, to rows of small letterpress shops, Ecojot (major drool... and Carolyn was there and was so kind and friendly), Tattly, a few small toy companies, the list goes on and on. It was difficult as a newbie with little knowledge of the paper market, to decipher which companies actually solicit work from artists. Most were forthcoming in answering questions. 

The best part of the whole experience, was the opportunity to meet soooo many artists I have come to know online from all around the world, which was just wonderful. 5 out of 6 of us from Happy Happy got the chance to finally meet, which of course was a major highlight (we missed you Denise Holmes!!) Lauren Minco's And Tammie Bennett's booths were absolutely fabulous, not to mention the Dottie Wrens, Forest Foundry, Tracey Mattocks, Kim Moulder, Kathy Weller, Victoria Johnson, Cultivate Art Collective, and so many other wonderful MATS artists. All very inspiring and just great people to meet and talk to. If you've never gone, GO!! Will I ever do it myself or in a group? I really don't know at this point, but it was certainly food for thought. 

Friday, May 16, 2014

#doodledream book launch blog party!

A few weeks back a good friend who I had met through Lilla Rogers' MATS courses, asked me to contribute a piece to launch her new book. Jenipher Lyn has written an honest, heartfelt book to help teen/tween girls navigate their way through those tough years. The book is so encouraging and chock full of her sweet doodles, I highly recommend it! Here's what she has to say about it:

"I wrote a super honest, encouraging, vibrant book with the intent to help others [especially teens!]
 feel less alone in this world. By using MY story, and LOTS OF colorful illustrations, I want others to realize they aren't alone on those dark, lowest of low days! This is my doodle dream!" Check out her blog Nightly Doodles, for more inspiration and sweet art.

The topic she asked me to come up with something for was "being yourself." To me, that's really the key (and certainly easier said than done) to being happy. Once you are comfortable in your own skin and not trying to act like others in the hopes of them liking you, you wiill be so much better off. Eventually, others will respect you for it and like you for who you are! Moral to the story? 
Just. be. you.

You can order the book directly from Jenipher here! It is also available for purchase on Amazon. Happy reading, doodling and dreaming!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

illustration friday... voyage

confession time... I actually took this little guy from an older piece and put him in a setting. When I heard the word of the week, I thought he would work pretty well and I hadn't submitted anything over there for quite a while, so what the heck ;) Can you actually cheat at illustration Friday?! shhhhh...

business card palooza!

I'm not sure what a palooza is, but here's my little set of cards that I plan on taking to surtex next week. I hadn't ever really done business cards before, but all the cool kids seemed to be doing it, so I thought I'd jump on the moo bandwagon, too. Now my goal is to come home with a quantity less than 100. Wish me luck! I'm thinking there must be some sort of card game I could come up with for the leftovers ;)

Sunday, May 11, 2014

happy mother's day!!

a little late to the game, but HMD wishes to all you wonderful moms! If you want to see some more mother's day goodness, head on over to happy happy art collective!

I was kinda proud of myself with this piece. Not because I think it's so great, but I actually used a dip pen! Highly unusual for me, but also kinda nice to do one step without a mouse in my hand! The lack of control and no command z was kinda scary (don't kid yourself, I still fixed/altered in AI once I vectorized it, but hey, it was a first step...) 

happy mother's day!!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

L is for lion... and liverwurst!

Here is my little contribution to the happy happy art collective alphabet project. Lola the lioness is serving up some luscious liverwurst laced ladyfingers! Why? Because kids growing up today, need to know what this nasty stuff is, haha! You can read the entire limerick here and don't forget to check out all the other letters the girls have done!

After the constraints of the letter "I," I was happy to have a letter that offered more possibilities. Actually, I had planned to make the main character here a lamb (Lulu...) but I had the hardest time trying to draw one that I liked! Maybe that's why most alphabets use lions...who knew? I also thought about having the lamb as the guest, but ultimately decided it was funnier to have it be just a tiny ladybug. It also allowed the lion to be the main focus. I played around a lot with the background color... lighter, darker, pinker, bluer, until I arrived at this. Probably could separate better from the character, but I liked the overall feel. Did you pick up on the "lattice" reference? ;) I kind of liked how this one worked out in terms of making the letter a larger focus of the overall piece. 
Have you had some liverwurst today? :P