Monday, February 28, 2011

The art of Shades

I love the idea of framing your eyes. You see art, ideas, and beauty every day through them, why not frame them up nicely so every thing is always in a frame. And I am never one to pull back and go cheep when good design and fashion are on the line. Last weekend my husband surprised me with a trip to the mall to pick out a new pair of sunglasses for the year. I was super excited, but in the end he was the one that found the best pair for me. I'm very fortunate that my husband not only enjoys great design and fashion, but also shopping!

I got my first pair of Fendi sunglasses and I have received nothing but compliments on them. Not only do they look super chic but they also do the job they were intended for and that is great design at work!
I've also included a few more of my more choice sunglasses over the last couple of years. I really love my Tom Ford's too. they are slim and delicate with a light tint for the gray but bright days when a bit of tint is all you need and I get to look sophisticated too!

A bit more on the chunky side but an amazingly gorgeous! These Gucci glasses will always be a treasure! Also a pair that my husband picked out for me. They come with a matching silky to keep them clean and the floral print has a story!
In 1966, Rodolfo Gucci, Guido Gucci's son, enlisted the help of refined artist Accornero to help him create a silk scarf especially for Hollywood mega-star Grace Patricia Kelly, a silk floral scarf that went on to become the most sought after accessory of the 1960s.
And finally my Chanel glasses. A wonderful white frame to brighten up those gray days. the tint is perfect for the not so sunny but you still need some thing to shade your eyes from squinting. I wore these all over London for 10 months and with all things of great design they still look brand new and gorgeous on!

Friday, February 25, 2011

A Book Blog!

I have so many books I want so badly to share that I thought that making a seperate book blog would be the best way to share all my wonderful treasures sitting on my shelves. I have put a link in the upper left corner of this blog for easy access between my two blogs. This is a unique book review blog as it will showcase unusual books on illustration, art, design, fashion, travel, and children's books. These won't be the easy to find books that you would see in Barnes and Nobel or Boarders. I will do my best to give a link to the location in which I purchased the books or you can always check amazon. I am always on the look out for special books so if you know of any please share!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

2010 Favorites

Reflection back on 2010 I thought it would be fun to share my favorite art, fashion, and hand made gifts we received or purchased.

Starting off my favorites is a gift of fashion from my husband on mothers day. I was due to have my son in less than a month and was dreading having to lug around a diaper bag again. Even with a Petunia Pickle Bottom bag stored away from when my daughter was a baby wasn't enough to get me excited about looking so unfashionable. My husband saved me from mommy fashion and got me this wonderful Burberry tote! It holds everything I need and more, it wipes clean in seconds and I get loads of complements everywhere I go. And the best part is I still feel fashionable!

One of my favorites that Donald and I gave to our family and each other was Emma and Ewan's first year together. It's a compilation of images that I took through out 2010 of our two loves. It's a hard bound book that I made through My Publisher. We are already looking forward to making more of these books from trips we have taken a past years of images we would love to have all bound up in a book.

Having a new baby always brings out the creative in others. And having Ewan was no exception. My dear friend Holly made a wonderful cross stitch of Ewan and had it framed for his room. Another great friend of mine, Irene, purchased the super cute piggy bank and had it hand painted with airplanes, clouds and Ewan's name.
A million years ago I was a nanny to 4 children when I was starting collage. Mary Jude, the lady I nannied for was brilliant with making quilts and created this super cute cowboy quilt for Ewan which I love to bits!
In keeping with the cowboy theme my great friend Julie from Let Her Be Little clothing company made Ewan his first jean jacket with a cowboy theme!
I can never pass up unusually illustrated books and have been constantly on the lookout for Boy books to start Ewan's book collection. I fell in love with this book and it's just as cute inside with an amazing message for any child you read it to.

Emma Turned 3 at the beginning of 2010 and she got her first big girl bed. So I was off trying to find the cutest comforter cover I could. Not an easy task. But finally at the Land of Nod, thanks to my good friend Wendy's suggestion, I found this adorable comforter cover that has a look of hand made and girl charm.

Emma loves how fancy her big girl bed is and this is essential when making that transition from crib to bed.
Another great find in the land of Books is Birdie's Big Girl Shoes. The illustrations are to die for and also has a super sweet message for all our big girls who love mommy's shoes!

My Dad is amazing when it comes to making things out of wood. Emma had this tiny little picnic table from Target that didn't last a year and only seated two kids. I was sad but asked my dad if he could take a look at it and make something like it only bigger to fit at least 4 to 6 kids and hold up a bit better in the weather. He out did himself! Emma loves her new picnic table and I can't wait to have both my kids and their friends sitting around it on play dates!
Finally I would like to add just a few more books of art and fashion

A life of Style was a book I just couldn't pass up at Anthropologie. It's gorgeously illustrated and is an amazing read! A must for all fashion minded girls!
My last two books were gifts from my friend Holly. She knows of my love for British Fashion. This is a fun book with a great overview of the many different fashion houses in the UK.
And Holly also knows my love of museums and wanting to go back to London. This book will be very handy for my next trip or move to London!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Importance of Protection.

With the web comes the ability to share and show things you have created, pictures you have taken, words you have written, ideas unfolding. And as much as we all love to share just like we did in kindergarten there is always those out there that ruin it for the rest of us. Those who steal, take with out asking, ignore copyright, have no respect for others creations, ideas, pictures or words.

Usually this happens with out us artist ever knowing until we stumble upon this miss use of our work by accident, or a good friend brings it to our attention that someone is using something of ours with out permission. So we protect ourselves with no right clicking to view an image or copy information. We water mark our images and art. We openly discuss intellectual property with friends, family, anyone who will listen to understand that what we create as artist belongs to us the artist. But sadly it still happens.....

.....It happened to me at Christmas this a relative

I was instantly stuck in an incredibly difficult situation. After years of expressing my anger over fellow students stealing my ideas in art school and the importance of respecting artist. The ugliness was now being forced on me in my living room Christmas morning. I had to bite my tongue. I never thought in a million years that my photography would be stolen from my blog and given as a gift right in front of me! I was angry and hurt.

I know that my anger and hurt must have been written all over my face because the item in question was not mentioned again and put away. It's now over a month later and no one has mentioned the item to me, no one has apologized or asked about my feelings. As an artist, my feelings are hugely important. So to have them ignored is just as hurtful as the crime of stealing my photography. I've turned what has happened over and over again in my mind trying to decide what to do from here. How do I protect my art and photography not just from strangers, but from close family and friends.

I want to warn others of this. I don't want anyone else to get caught off guard by such an unfortunate situation and extremely awkward moment. So I would recommend a few must do's for fellow artists in any field.

1.Of course the obvious is necessary, ALWAYS copyright your work! Even if you are just sharing with a close friend or family member, if you don't want others to use your art, words or photography, make it clear up front.

2.Leave no room for interpretation. Such as, "The photography, art, and words on this blog are copyright Suzanne Litzenberg and may not be used or duplicated in any form except by Suzanne Litzenberg". May seem a bit steep but it will go a long way in avoiding confusion, anger or hurt by lack of good judgment of others. It's very easy to wrongfully trust others to respect your art, photography, and writing.

3. If need be water mark each image! This will help further your cause in making others aware when trying to rip your images off the Internet.

4. Continue to educate your friends and family what copyright means and what intellectual property is.

Christmas 2010

2010 was a hard year on me creatively. I had hundreds of burning ideas in my head and heart but the time and energy was lost in my pregnancy and taking care of my new baby and gregarious 3 year old. So most of my art was limited to what I had to do personaly....Like Christmas cards.

Ewan made his first appeance in my art on my 2010 Christmas card. I used the theme of the Nutcracker for the art since Emma is in ballet and Ewan would make the perfect toy soldier.
I feel really strongly about letter writing and card sending. If your going to buy a card and send it out then by all means send some form of communication with it. Seeing how this may be the only letter you send for the year make a bit of effort and don't just sign your name. A nice letter, hand written note and a picture of your family / kids are a nice touch too!I love sending a cute picture of the kids. Most of my friends and relatives live so far away that this is the only way they will get to see my kids despite my blogging efforts to keep family and friends informed most just wait for the annual Christmas card, letter and picture. This years picture was taken by me one cold rainy morning in front of our Christmas tree.

This year was also my first time drawing a Santa since I was about 10 years old. I wanted him to be cute round and happy and be smiling up at Emma and Ewan Christmas morning with a cheery note thanking them for the wonderful treats they had left the night before. I'm thinking I'm going to make cute stationery out of my new Santa for next years Etsy Remarkable Bird store Christmas sales!

Ewan's Birth Announcement

I Finally have a free moment to share a bit on this blog that I have neglected for much longer than I would have wanted.
Just like I made Emma's birth announcements when she was born I did the same for Ewan. I love birds especially blue ones and I love owls too so I combined the two for Ewan's birth announcements. Thought they were still sweet enough for a baby and boy enough for Ewan.

I designed the whole thing and took Ewan's picture for it too and printed it all out and cut it all out by hand only to realize that I was going to print on the back as well as the front. Ugh! Okay, I'm an artist I can fix this with a wrap around!
It's so funny how major mistakes can turn out to be great design successes if you are open to working around the problem. The wrap around became one of my favorite elements of the piece and I still had room to add the darling quote "Every Great Man Was First A Boy"

I also like how when you opened the announcement it peaked out at you right way to hoot "look whooo is here!"
I had to add a sticker closure...all in the name of good design and packaging! I think even simple little letters should be gifts themselves!
I used a very clean basic grid design so that the focus would be on Ewan's sweet face. Here's the stack of 100 announcements ready for stuffing into envelopes.