Monday, December 29, 2008

I'm On Another Blog!!

What a lovely Christmas present! Check out Filigree Garden blog and you will see my lovely "Finding Winter Cardinal" amongst some very talented artist. A big thank you to Liv for thinking of me and including my art!!!

Saturday, December 6, 2008


In all the rushing around over the last month, I had a few moments of sanity and reason and managed to book some slots on Etsy for some showcases.I figured that those who would buy on line for the holidays would do so before Thanksgiving. And I also thought that since everyone would be home on Thanksgiving, that they may do a bit of cyber shopping. I was right! I got loads of views and hearts, and I think a sale or two!! I still have one showcase left for the year on December 9th then it's back to the drawing board (literally!) for some new art for the new year.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


It's all finally over now. My first job doing stationery for a wedding. Don't know if I will ever do anything like it again. But it I learned a lot, and those that do it for a living...God bless them. What a load of work!!

I did all new art for the invites and had tight specifications as well as tons of revisions and new requests. I really wanted to get it right and really really wanted to make my sister in law and husband to be super happy with everything. In the end it took me over 100 hours of work to get the Save the Date cards, invitations, response cards, driving directions, map, escort cards, order of service, handkerchief cards, and table numbers done. I did all original art, all the layout and design, all the printing at home on my Epson R1800, all the cutting, trimming, and pasting and putting together. And in the end my sister in law was thrilled!! So I call that a success!

The invitation

My sister in law's middle name is Fern after her grandmother who passed away some years ago. So in honour of her grandmother who couldn't be there she wanted a fern illustration as a theme on the stationery, I spent hours pouring over the fern it went through loads of changes until I was happy (I think I am a harder client than anyone who actually hires me) I need to be happy even if my client was happy with the first sketch out. I did the final fern in Illustrator, and did each little leaf and stem just right until it looked great.

The Map

The map was by far the funnest piece to do. Since I know the area really well where they were getting married and I knew them very personally, it was fun putting in points of interest to them. I put in "Zoomies Yacht" which is were my sister in laws father has his boat moored. I also put in the Starbucks that my sister in law stops at every morning on her way to work in Little Italy, the Gaslamp Quarter where they love to go to dance, and Best Buy where my sister in law and her husband to be go every Sunday as an outing (they LOVE that place!!). I added a few more places of interest for those guest coming from out of town so they would have fun while in San Diego too.

The Order of Service and Hankie Card

The order of service was done twice, yes that means I double side printed, cut and folded 120 of these things which took 3 days to do to find out that someones name had been spelled wrong and had to do the whole lot over again. I wasn't thrilled, but wanted it to be right as I knew that if there was a mistake it would only make me look bad even though I was going off the information I was given to I was all to happy to do them over. The Hankie card was then attached to a antique lace handkerchief that was attached to the order of service and every lady and girl that came to the wedding was given an Order of Service with a hankie. I thought it was a lovely touch.

Escort Cards

This was quick and easy to print, cut and paste together. If the guest was having fillet Mignon with sea bass they got a blue card and if the guest was having chicken with shrimp they got an orange card. This made it easier on the servers to get the right food to the right guest.

Table Numbers

Finally the table numbers. Would you believe only days before the wedding I woke up in the middle of the night realizing that with out table numbers the escort cards would be no good! I thought only Brides woke up in the middle of the night with those kinds of last minute "OH my God I forgot about....." Well this time it was me. I made up the table numbers the next morning rushing to ... you guessed it the Paper Source to get the backing I needed.

On a Blog

It is always so wonderful when others find you and your art and like it so much that they want to share it with others. I am so delighted with every sale I get in my Etsy shop and thrilled every time someone adds one of my pieces to their treasury. Now one of my most treasured pieces has found a spot on Susan's blog. Check out Kiddlebug, a fun blog for moms. Finding Winter Cardinal is the image of the day for her blog on fun things to do with your kids this winter. Thank you Susan for making my art a part of your site!!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

All About the O

I usually don't like to vent but can't seem to leave this one alone. I just love logos, especially good clean logos that send a quick message and provoke strong feelings. I also love reading about how a logo is created. The thought process and color choices and branding...its all very fascinating. But I have a bit of a rebuttal about Obama's logo. Yes, it's good design but am I the only one that thinks it looks like the Bank of America logo??
And then I came across the site of the people who did the logo and what they had to say about it. see here and was really disappointed. I am so fascinated by those who can do clean clear logos that have a real punch but to say "borrowing a trick from the Nike playbook. The shoe company’s famous swoosh means nothing," really is annoying! I did a lot of studding of logos while at art school and everyone knows that the "swoosh" in question is a wing from Nike the Greek goddess of strength, speed, and victory. So maybe those who did the work on the logo can do great clean design, borrowing more from a bank logo than anything else, but I would have rather they made educated statements in the process. Anyone who has read about art, propaganda, and government knows that a strong logos, slogans, and imagery can really be affective to any campaign so why not stick to that instead of Harley Davidson, or Nike. I would have loved to here about successes with great Swiss government billboards, or Russian military recruitment's that would have been much closer link to what Obama's campaign did than that of a shoe company.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Tuesday Book Review

This is one of my all time favorite books. This book was the inspiration for me to get my degree in graphic design and it was the book that inspired my move to London (oh how I miss London).

This book takes you through some of the most amazing fashion designers and how they paired up with the best graphic designers and the amazing package design, logos, and presentations that evolved by their unique unions.

It starts off with Antoni and Alison (which I love and my Emma has the most wonderful little dress by them) and how important packaging and predestination is for their clothing. How Giorgio Armani oversees the graphic prestiontation and identity of his fasion house from every logo, t-shirt label, and fragrance bottle. The thought provoking advertisments of Comme Des Garcons is amazing. The thrill of how John Galliano's logo and packaging was brought together so cleverly. Alexander McQueen and Paul Smith's logo redesings. And loads of other desingers and how they work with graphic artists to accomlish such wonderful and powerful fashion brands, like Vivenne Westwood, You Must Create, and Anna Sui to name just a few more.

Each fashion desinger has it's own section and story to tell. Most (with out much suprise) come out of Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design in London. The layout is clean with wonerful product shots and photography to help tell each story.

Even though my path has taken a huge change in direction from the original (be a graphic designer for a fashion house) this book is still a huge inspiration for me. There are loads of wonderful creative stories that will inspire anyone with an artistic mind.

My art will start taking new life once again, but with my love for fahion in the forfront and will poor out in each new illustration as I move forward. I have a lot to thank to this book. And hopefully soon I too will be back living in London where I belong with all things creative.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Love This Dress

Came across this dress in my daily fashion news by Hussein Chalayn. The Hussein Chalayan exhibition will run from January 21 until May 17 2009 at the Design Museum, Shad Thames, London SE1.
Airborne, a dress created from Swarovski crystals and more than 15,000 LED lights, and pieces from Afterwards, Chalayan's spring/summer 2000 collection, in which furniture was literally transformed into clothing.

Here are a few pieces from his spring 2009 collection that I like too
His show literally ended with a crash: the live smashing of dozens of wine glasses lined up along a pseudo-bar inset in the back of the set. While that happened, the stage was occupied by a circle of girls standing on a revolving dais, wearing molded-latex dresses that appeared to be frozen in aerodynamic motion. Each dress was hand-painted with images of crushed cars.

"It's about the speed in our lives and how it can only result in a crash," Chalayan explained, adding that the prints, which included number plates, car handles, and fenders, were "taken from pictures of car graves." The extraordinary talent Chalayan has is his ability to project something emotionally and politically pertinent onto his runway without making it oppressively doom-laden.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The Paper Source

My really good friend and creative mate, Morgan (If you would love to find out more about what creative things my friend Morgan gets up to, check out her very cheeky and sassy blog at Internet Therapy), told me a month ago about a store called The Paper Source opening at the Forum in our neighborhood. Since she told me not a week goes by that I don't visit the shop at least 3 times! A Few Items I have purchased, I turned the tube map into a giant place mat for our table.

It is such a wonderful and fun store for those who love and appreciate good design, quality stationery, crafty and artsy people. And YES!! there is a HUGE difference between crafty and artsy people. I just discovered I am artsy NOT crafty. My sister-in-law's bridal shower was coming up and I really wanted to make some decorations for the shower. The Paper Source has these wonderful kits that you can put together beautiful magnolia flowers. I thought they would really be fun and add a bit to the party decorations. So I got four packs of flowers in different sizes and then spent the next 5 days making the stupid things. In the end they were exactly what I wanted them to be. The really added to the decor and were beautiful. But the time and patience it takes to make crafts is not my thing at all!! I will never be making these flowers again. I'm sticking to my art!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Fashion Week (my favorites)

Moschino for 2009

Keep forgetting to post some of my favorite shots from fashion week. There was a lot I didn't care for, but there was some wonderful items, and it makes one very excited for the clothes to come next year. By far Moschino was my favorite show. Great colors and embellishments.

Burberry for 2009

Moschino for 2009

Dior for 2009

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Holiday Items Launch

You know I haven't been posting it's due to more new art. I finally launched my holiday items. There still may be a few late editions, but the the three main paintings are done. Already thrilled to see the positive response to the new art. Here is a sample of the art as cards

The painting that is doing the best is my "Finding Winter Cardinal" I was inspired to do this piece because of my grandmother that I named my Emma after. Every year for Christmas my Grandmother (who is now 94) always sends out a beautifully illustrated card with a cardinal on it. So when I was thinking of winter cards to do, it was a given that one of them had to be with a red cardinal and a little Emma girl. It's very exciting to see that others really love it. I sent out my first print of "Finding Winter Cardinal" today and totally fitting and with great joy it went to a lovely lady Illinois (which is also were my grandmother lives)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Tuesday Book Review

I know with Fashion week running ramped all over the world this month, it's been hard for me to take my eye off of whats up and coming for the spring. Burberry just had their show yesterday in Milan and it looks quite nice. I think Christopher Bailey always does such a wonderful job, even though I have enjoyed other shows of his more. This one still had quite a lot of wonderful trenches walking down the aisle. I know he had said a few years back that he could never tire of redesigning the coat. And this show once again proves it. Surprisingly with my love for Burberry, I don't have one single book about them. I have Chanel, Dior, Gucci, and hoards of other wonderful fashion books, but not one Burberry. So I decided to go and look up in Amazon to see if there was any books written about the fashion house and sadly, no. Then I got worried, I started going through all my fashion books, like "Fashion the century of the designer" and "Sample" but only one sentence between the large books could I find and that wasn't even worth it. So I started down the path of my fashion illustration books like "Stylishly Drawn" and "Fashion Illustration Next" but there was nothing there either. Finally I pulled out my book "100 Years of Fashion Illustration" and came across Burberry. Only a few images, but with Burberrys long history and wonderful past I think it's a book that is need of publishing, a story worth telling. Thomas Burberry was only 21 when he founded "Burberry" and that was over 150 years ago. Thomas invented the trench coat and the water resistant fabric that was used to make it. Check out the short but very informative history of Burberry. And if any one knows of a book that has loads of info about Burberry, I'd love to know of it. I must say though that my book "100 years of Fashion Illustration" is a delight and full of great facts and work spanning 100 years of fashion illustration.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Million Dollar Baby

(Emma my million dollar baby)

I think I have one of these, or some form of one. If you have the time and want to read about what is really going on in the design, and merchandising world of children check out this link Baby It's from an article printed in the October issue of PRINT magazine. Very informative and they even mention Etsy as a place to shop for the modern nursery. Just like the article mentions, we don't dress Emma in licensed clothing, her highchair (a wonderful shade of orange) and stroller (a bright blue as seen above) are both by Stokke and cost together over $1500. With great companies like Boon, Trip Trap, Daily Tea, and Pediped there are loads of well designed choices for any modern parent. As much as I am one to purchase these items, there is still the old fashion in me that loves the old wooden and metal toys, great creative toys like crayons and Legos. And of course that comes out in my own watercolor paintings. I think it's wonderful to mix a bit of old with new and create a wonderful twist of the two. But I am all for leaving out the over done Disney (and a host of other over licensed products) these don't have a place in my home as long as I have anything to say about it.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Number 12 of 40

Was thrilled to get voted in at the number 12 spot in the Etsy Handmade Kids Challenge!! Out of thousands of entries, I am was so happy to make it to the final 40 and to have people vote for my painting. Thanks to everyone who thought "Back with Friends" was # 1. If you want to know how everyone placed check out Winners or you can go strait to the art section Here. With a wonderful 289 votes and loads more hearts in my shop, it's been a great fun!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Portrait Photography

There are two types of photography I would love to be great at, product and portrait. I am sure with a bit more guidance, a lot of reading and getting to know my camera's ins and outs, oh and a small fortune in extra equipment I might be able to manage something really nice. This morning while reading my daily fashion news I stumbled across Emma Watson staring in the new addition of the Italian Vogue. I don't know what I would want more, to look that amazing in a photo, or to be able to shoot such amazing pictures of my own Emma.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tuesday Book Review

I don't even know which is better with this book the art or the story it tells of true self giving. I got this book at the MOCA in LA a few years back. Loved it from the moment I saw the cover, but how could you ever go wrong with art by Takashi Murakami (need I say more about the art??) And such a wonderful story by Yujin Kitagawa. Keba Keba is just one of those books that anyone would love to have sitting on their shelves, sharing with friends, and reading to young minds. Marc Jacobs reviewed the book saying " The true joy one receives from giving so generously, so selflessly of one's gifts-true not only of Keba Keba but of Yujin and Takashi, as well. This story, so simple, is a lesson we can all learn from and practice every chance we get."

Monday, September 15, 2008

More Work More Fun

I can't believe it's been weeks since my last post. A bit shocked, but I have been busy. The old adage all work and no play.... Well this is fun and makes my time fly, and I don't feel dull at all :) below is a snap shot of a few pieces I have been working on. Loads more on it's way. Hopefully I will have about 6 new items in my shop by the weekend. It's been fun getting together some happy paintings for the holidays.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Early Voting!

No need to wait until November to cast your vote, time to flex those voting muscles and support some wonderful creatives across America out there making the world a more beautiful and happy place to be!
I am so thrilled!! My "Back with friends" painting made it to the finales in the Kids Handmade Challenge under the Art category!! I do hope that anyone reading this will go out and vote for my for my painting!! It's simple and only takes a few moments go to this link Handmade Kid Challenge Register with Etsy if you haven't already, it's free and there is great shopping to be had for everyone once you do. Then cast your votes and don't forget to cast a vote on "Back with Friends" under the art category. The guest judges are from Boingboing, Cookie, decor8, Martha Stewart Living, Ohdeedoh, Parents and Treehugger. They will be choosing the Expert Panel Winners and I would love to be one of them!!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Last Breeze of Summer

My little Emma has once again inspired another wonderful watercolor.

As summer draws to a close and classrooms begin to fill, the Last Breeze of Summer caresses your skin. There is still the sweetness in the air and warmth on your arms, a complete sense of clam and joy as you look forward to the magic of the coming holidays.I have added two new delightful items to my Etsy shop, a beautiful giclee print and personalized card.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Transport For London

I absolutely love Transport For London. They have cameras all over the city and when ever I need my London fix I just click on their wonderful map and get live shots from my favorite places in the city.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tuesday Book Review

In light of all the news surrounding the upcoming movie about Coco Chanel (staring my favorite french actress Audrey Tautou), I chose today's book "Different Like Coco" An absolutely delightful Illustrated children's book, about the real Coco. Unlike the charmed life of some of today's fashion designers like Stella McCartney or Tom Ford. Coco came from a very poor family and ended up in an orphanage at age 12 after her mother died. She was an amazingly independent and confident lady. Knowing that she just as good as any wealthy well-bred lady in Paris, she took her talent and creativity for sewing and made simple, practical, and comfortable clothes to fit her frame. The book has loads of wonderful facts about Coco Chanel, like how she invented the cardigan sweater, and made it fashionable NOT to wear a corset. Just think we could all still be wearing corsets today if it wasn't for Coco. This book is great for any age girl. Each page is full of delightful drawings and ends with an inspiring message to be yourself, be different like Coco!

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Plane

Okay, so here is my take on a modern little boys airplane as vector art. Waiting to hear my dad's response. He's going to cut one out in Masonite tomorrow at his home in Colorado and let me know how it comes out and if there are any more changes needed. I think it will look great as a stand alone piece or with the Eiffel Tower. Totally new to doing little boy things so it will be interesting to see how well it is received in the end by consumers.

A bit of advice

In The Fashion Lab Vogue Daily News

18 August 2008, 12:48PM

AS the modern fashion industry becomes increasingly globalised, style maven Daphne Guinness, writing in the Financial Times, is celebrating a return to individuality.

"Between couture fashion and street fashion, there is a certain continuity. It's great to go to London's Camden Market or downtown New York and see what the kids are wearing," she says. "Today, you don't even have to travel to do this; all you have to do is look at fashion blogs."

"On one site you might see a hipster in Williamsburg, New York, for example, in very tight, very shrunken jackets and trousers, and then you jump to another and see a different type of person wearing an oversized shirt, belted with silver tights. It's like a bunch of ad-hoc experiments going on all the time."

With the media focusing increasingly on which celebrities are wearing which labels - or, indeed, collaborating with them - seeking out individuals with style is more refreshing than ever before, Guinness adds.

"Celebrities almost never look good unless they are 'out' at something or other, while real fashion animals always look a little interesting, even if they are only going to Starbucks. Individuality will always exist," she asserts. "It's more that it has become very underground and doesn't infiltrate the mainstream as much as it should, so you have to search it out, which is getting more difficult, but also more rewarding."

"It's exciting to see people inhabit their look, wearing clothes from morning to night. Fashion at its most interesting and purposeful, whether it's the most expensive clothes being made or the least expensive, is not about showing off - it's about creation."

Tea For Two

Trying like mad to get a least one new item up on my online shop every week. Meet the latest illustration to my Remarkable Bird Shop.

Tea for Two
This was a really fun and fast image. It was Thursday at nap time and I was eager to get some art done. I had nothing even remotely ready to post for the weekend. I fell in love with some images of Emma having tea with her monkey and decided to draw and paint from there. In three days (which is absolute record time for me) I had my Tea for Two painting up in my shop. I'm hoping this week brings yet another wonderful painting (or two) But need to get busy on some wedding invitations for my sister-in-law and get that Global Gals logo colorized. Wow what a busy week I have ahead, hopefully I will get some of it posted on this blog too so everyone can see how all my projects are coming out. Oh, and I almost forgot. I need to get a plane drawn out too, my dad is going to cut it out of Masonite and we will add it to the shop for those who have little boys and want a plane to go with the Eiffel Tower instead of butterflies. I have to get the plans for the plane done this week and sent out so my dad has time to cut it out and bring it with him at the end of the month. Oh the work I will need to accomplish during Emma's nap.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tuesday Book Review

A fun walk through one of my favorite clothing stores Anthropologie, Donald secretly purchased this book while I was browsing. What a wonderful surprise!! A Dictionary written by the man Christian Dior himself! I absolutely adore Dior!! And all that is real fashion. And to have a book written by him and now released again in print for all of us to young to be around during his life is exceptional. From Accent to Zest and everything that is fashion in between this is a great guide for those who know, love and want to stay fashionable. Somethings are truly timeless, and this book proves it.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Eiffel Tower

It's finally done. After almost a year of design, cutting, and painting, I finally finished my little girls Eiffel Tower and butterflies. It took me ages to decide what materials to use for the tower and butterflies and even longer to figure out what color to paint them. Then there was the matter of attaching them to the wall. I didn't want big holes or paint ripping off. I also didn't want a super pink room. So in the end my dad helped me pick out some great light weight pressed board (Masonite) Then he did the cutting at his home in Colorado. I used the color off of Emma's chairs from Pottery Barn for Kids (which is a lovely soft green), and the nice people at Home Depot made paint that matched perfect. I also found at Home Depot lovely little 3M poster mounts. I had to use 4 packs of the stuff, but the outcome means no holes in the walls and no paint that peals off and I can rearrange and take the tower with me where ever I move!! VoilĂ ! a light weight, customizable, easy to affix to your walls over and over again, Eiffel Tower fit for a modern home!