26 February 2009

When it Comes to Saving, She's on Fire!

Who knows what compelled me to paint this one! I think it may have been a fascination that day with blending reds. But, if I must put a story to the painting, I'll say that the piggy bank represents me and my frugal tendencies and the blazing red is the state of my financial affairs??? hahaha! At any rate, I like this little guy and if nothing else, he is a conversation starter. If you love him, or need a whimsical budgetary reminder disguised as art, you can buy here.
...and if you need a close-up to see if there's chemistry (wink*), here's a detail shot.

23 February 2009

Halfway to Dreamland

Little by little, weekend by weekend, I am getting my son's big boy room done. Here is a shot of his wooden name plaque with backlighting. Sorry for the fuzzy photo, but I needed the room dim to show the halo effect of the lights and I just have an ol' automatic digital camera still. (Note to self: Get the new Nikon I've been coveting and learn how to use it!) This light will eventually have a short pull-cord for on and off. It's on order! The bedspread is also getting a wide lime green racing stripe down the center as well. But alas, I only have 2 hands.

Next came a hideout for the little man. He LOVES to hide. He calls it his "Fort." Anyway, I decided to encircle his big Lovesac beanbag chair (have you tried these? they are awesome!) with some curtains he can open and close. Then I wrapped some headboard pieces in batting and cloth for a soft place to lean back and to close the gap in the corner. The center piece is affixed diagonally in the corner and has a space for books on top since this is a great space for storytime. See the cool light fixture inside and the nice, low lightswtich to the right of the curtain? The headboard fabric I used is a light grey sueded snakeskin design! Fun! The top rod is just black plumbing pipe bent into an arc.

This last photo shows the comfy orange shag area rug and chalkboard-paint-surrounded mirror. The drawings are by mommy and Cooper. Can you guess whose are whose? I also marked Coop's height on the right. He loves to be measured.

Next time, I'll post pics of the still-unfinished corner desk and upholstered bulletin boards I'm working on! Then, accessories......ah.....It won't be long 'til the Dreamland is complete.

19 February 2009

Designing A Crest

I recently reconnected with a friend from high school. He has taken the priesthood as his vocation and is studying in Rome. We visited when he was here in the States for Christmas. It was so inspiring to hear someone speak so passionately about his faith. We actually stumbled across one another on Facebook (yay FB!) when I had asked him to say a mass for a friend's newborn who was having some medical issues. The baby is just perfectly fine now, and it makes you wonder about the mystery of it all. Needless to say, you don't question the outcome. You just give thanks.
Well, when Father asked me if I would design a crest to symbolize his priesthood, of course I said yes. The above has been created like a blueprint. It's a first proof, sketched by hand, using elements that Father requested. I will post the completed version in a week or two so you all can see the progression. I have faith it will turn out just perfectly.

16 February 2009

It's Just the Name of the Band!

My good friends at Milkboy Recording (and also Milkboy Coffee in Ardmore, PA!) hooked me up with a cool logo and CD design project. Sleeping Naked is a 2-man band. They play fun, catchy, original music and have thousands and thousands of MySpace friends even though they're only in college. Talk about ambition. Anyway, you can check them out at here on MySpace. And you can see the rest of the CD packaging design and liner notes by buying the CD through a link you'll find on their page. haha!

15 February 2009

Let's Party, Baby!

This invitation is for a rather unconventional baby shower. The mom-to-be is a fun-loving social butterfly with a modern approach to baby style, nursery decor and even the obligatory shower celebration. Her friends just knew she'd want to have a quirky, different kind of party, (including husbands), where all her friends could have a great time. Partygoers plan to toast the guest of honor (sparkling cider in hand) and her "bun in the oven" and have a great time in a Mommie-Chic kind of way.
*note - all names have been changed to protect the innocent

14 February 2009

Capturing a Moment

Here's another recent children's sketch. I have much love for the cool mom who embraced this non-traditional portrait pose. It captures a moment and will no doubt strike a strong chord for years to come. It will join my favorites because it is so memorable and full of spirit.

11 February 2009

Improving on Greatness

Do you have a friend whose talent and ambition make you feel like a slacker? I actually have a handful of them. One in particular has been on my radar lately though. It's my friend, Adam. He eats, sleeps, breathes basketball, works in sports television and writes a fantastic website called NaismithLives.com. I'll leave it up to him to describe it in this excerpt from the site.

"We're a basketball web site for the basketball purist.

We dissect the game at all levels, from high school to the pros. We comment on day-to-day on-court performance and we place teams and individuals in their historical context.

But, most importantly, this is an area of discussion. Because even the inventor of the game himself – Dr. Naismith – was a professor. And, in his spirit, we intend to teach and be taught all about the game we love."

Despite its relative youth on the web, NL.com has been getting loads of interest in recent months. Skyrocketing web hits and multiple requests from vendors clamoring to place advertising have affirmed what was already suspected. It's a hit! In depth analysis of the sport, colorful writing and a fun approach to the game are all key components to the sheer readability of the content. So, clearly basketball fanatics and novices alike are finding entertainment here.

Now, here''s where I come in!!!
These early successes have positively mandated acceleration of brand development. So I get to take on the task of formal logo design and print marketing development that will raise NL.com to the next level! After several concepts and revisions, the above logo is pretty close to our final iteration. Yep. We like it. That's how we roll.

It's so exciting to see good people get closer to their dreams. And getting to play a small part in it is even better. So, I hope you'll visit the site here, share it with others and send all your good karma to MY talented friend while you're remembering a whole bunch of your own.

I think I'm obsessed with Detail

I can't really write a lot of description for this set of drawings. I look at them grouped together and feel like maybe I see myself. Colorful and crazy, but in a controlled, patterned way. Organic and flowy/floaty, but contained within sharp, crisp lines. Layers upon layers of details. And each and every time, I have a hard time knowing when the work is done.

08 February 2009

Where am I finding the time to doodle?

I force myself to put pen, or pencil or ink to paper just about every day. I have to. If I don't, I can easily go months without creating any original artwork. It falls by the wayside when work beckons, or my 3-foot-tall boss gets too demanding for a juice box. But I've found the time across 5 or 6 sittings to finish another of my signature ink doodles. Enjoy it. Never can tell when another will find its way to the scanner.

Mommie, Let's Work on My Project!

Today was a busy Saturday. Sanding, painting, sewing, and a bit of dancing with my little dude on his fluffy orange shag carpet in his slowly-progressing BIG BOY ROOM!!!
The above art piece is just phase one of a fun project. The art is on 1/2" wood (actually it's MDF) and will eventually be mounted about 1" off the wall and will have a halo-effect of backlighting. It will hang above Coop's bed and have a very short pull-cord (safety first!) so it can be turned on and off as a night light or just for sheer coolness : )
Stay tuned for a finished photo - electrified!!

06 February 2009

I Want A Tutu

When I was little, I had strawberry blonde hair, freckles and a girly-girl attitude. I'd make a dress for my Barbie or a bikini for my Cabbage Patch Kid....a bandeau bikini style with gathers on the sides, to be exact. But I don't recall having a nice, big fluffy tutu. For some reason, our kiddie dance class wore flapper-style fringe skirts. What a rip off!
So here's a colored pencil drawing of how I prefer to remember my dance recital experience. Princess crown, curls in my hair and a big ol' fluffy, froofy tutu.
Wonder if they make 'em in my size now?

05 February 2009

The Eyeleashes Always Get Me

Children's portraits represent a really large portion of my commissioned work. And that's just fine by me because the subject matter always appeals. It sounds cliché, but the innocence that children have really is written all over their cherubic little faces. In my opinion, all children are cute. Most are magnetic, even in two dimensions. And sometimes, they are angelic. Occasionally, I find myself tearing up a bit as i sketch. It's embarrassing!
The portrait above was definitely a tear-jerker. The subject is a precious little one named Julia. I just love her wispy hair, her adorable little pucker and, the thing that always gets me, her impossibly perfect eyelashes. Somehow, every baby has the most perfectly curved eyelashes!? I save drawing them til last. They complete the portrait for me. Something about the sparkle and flutter they instantly add makes the whole face come alive.
Countless cosmetic companies have capitalized on the subtle importance of great lashes. I'm just agreeing. I doubt there will be a time when they aren't the "go to" accessory in my portrait-drawing arsenal. In fact, I think my new motto will be; "It ain't done til you swoosh some lashes on it."

04 February 2009

Here a Moo, There a Moo

Oh boy, here's another post related to a kids' birthday party. What can I say? I'm good in living rooms and kiddie parties.(haha!) In this case, the birthday boy and girl, brother and sister, have birthdays a day apart and were celebrating together. The party was an interactive visit to a farm with lots of nature study and animal facts, a hayride and cake! The party favors were small board-book versions of Big Red Barn, by Margaret Wise Brown, and the kids' mom wanted that theme to carry through to this illustrated invitation. The party was a big hit. Every single kid "MOO'ed" at least 17 times, and THAT is the sign of a successful birthday party in anybody's book.

02 February 2009

These Shirts Were Made for Bouncin'

Kids have parties at moonbounce facilities all the time. The 2 kids depicted in the center of the above illustration had a JOINT Bounce Party. Their moms wanted the party to be memorable. They also wanted the partygoers to stand out from the crowd. They asked me to do this graphic for tee shirts that all the party guests were given to wear during the event. The kids were easy to spot and they all had a favor to take home.
The shirts probably made pretty nice smocks to protect against stray ice cream and cake as well. And that can't be a bad thing considering the questionable fork skills of a band of bouncy 5-year olds.