Thursday, March 27, 2014

I'm on Lilla Rogers Blog today!!

Lilla and Beth recently asked artists who'd taken MATs or Bootcamp  to email in their 'successes' that resulted from participating in the courses so they could write a blog post about it.   I sent an email with a list of projects I'd worked on, my competition win, inclusion in Uppercase and features on Print and Pattern.  I said that I didn't know if they fit with their criteria for 'successes' but I was happy about them and wanted to share them with Lilla and Beth in the hope they'd want to include something in their post.  So when Beth announced on Facebook that they'd posted on their blog about their alumni I thought perhaps there might be a mention of me.  Maybe.  If I was lucky.
And there was!!!  I'm so pleased!!  You can see the post here and see what they wrote.  You can also read about other artists and the incredible things they've accomplished.  A lot of them are friends from the MATs course I took last October and I know they're thrilled too.  It's just lovely to feel that your work is valued and all your efforts have been recognized - especially by Lilla and Beth!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Minted and West Elm Together Again - Editor's Pick!

Remember I asked you to vote for my artwork in the Minted and West Elm Together Again competition?  Well I won a prize!  My design 'Desert Frost' was an Editor's Pick (see above)!   It's my first Minted competition and there were nearly 2000 entries so I'm really pleased.  My winning entry will be sold at Apparently I also get a Minted Storefront as a prize so I've hatched a plan.  I'm going to pander to my yearning for hand-painting by shoving loads of hand-rendered artwork in my Minted shop as wall art.  I'm really excited about this as it gives me an opportunity to paint with an objective.  I'm constantly trying to reconcile hand-painting with creating my commercial art and now I can.  These below are the other entries that didn't get picked.  You might notice a slight similarity to the designs that will be in Uppercase, featured in my last post.  That's because these too were adapted from the Lilla Rogers Bromeliad project.   Those Bromeliads have gone a long way!  Thank you Lilla for an inspired subject to explore!

Friday, March 14, 2014

My work has been selected for the The UPPERCASE Surface Pattern Design Guide!

My work's going to be in a magazine!!  I've never been in a magazine before!  I'm so thrilled about this!!  These are the designs that were chosen.  The first two are pieces from a group I adapted from the Lilla Rogers MATS Part A Bromeliad Project  - the originals were plate designs but I thought they'd make lovely all-over fabric designs - I can actually see them on bedding - so I re-worked them. Who would have thought that 6 months later they'd be in Uppercase Magazine!

'The UPPERCASE Surface Pattern Design Guide will feature the best in established and up-and-coming surface pattern designers. By being part of the guide, your work will be exposed to an engaged and active readership of art and design buyers, potential clients, collaborators and consumers. This spring issue of UPPERCASE will be distributed free of charge to media at Surtex, the famed surface pattern licensing show this May in New York City. It will also be made readily available as a free pdf download available online. (Last year's Stationery Guide has had over 84,000 impressions via Issuu.)'

The work of 100 designers will be featured (many of whom I know from the Lilla Rogers courses) and I can't wait to see it!  It will be in Issue 21 April 2014.
You can see the promo video here and if you'd like to subscribe you can use this discount code - USPDG2014 - good for 15% off.  Here's the subscription link .

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Lovely Ink on Print and Pattern! (and Rubbish Cat - read further)

The Lovely Ink Project has been featured on the Print and Pattern Blog - 
and my little cat was posted.  I'm particularly happy about that because there's a long story behind that cat.
I  knew I wanted to draw a cat for a group of designs I had in mind and I had a fairly clear idea of what I wanted this cat to be.  I sat down to draw him/her feeling quite confident - and I couldn't do it.  I drew the thing over and over and over - in pencil, paint, pen, on the computer - and it was pathetic.  In desperation I posted on the MATS Facebook group that I couldn't draw a cat and that what I'd drawn was RUBBISH and ended up with 50 requests to see this rubbish cat.
By this time I'd been drawing cats for 2 days and had finally come up with this benign little creature (above) and was quite pleased with her.  So I posted her - and there was an uproar about how she wasn't rubbish enough.

So, to compensate, I drew this;

And then Nic drew this (so rubbish it looks like a fox);

and Anne this (way too good!):

but later admitted the first one had been this (far more rubbish);

then Ohn did this (Austrian rubbish cat with no ears);

Vivayne this (so sweet - looks like it wants to make friends);

Jennifer this (cat putting out the rubbish);

Wendy this (which isn't a cat Wendy - definitely a fox!);

Stephanie this (outrage ensued - is not rubbish ATALL);

then this (a bit more rubbish I suppose but not really rubbish enough);

and finally this (drawn with left hand - so rubbish is gorgeous);

then Rachael added this (pretty rubbish Rachael);

and Amalya this (I love this vibrating cat);

and Carolina this (look at it's tail);

So, while I'm sure my friends would much rather I show-cased their brilliant portfolios, showing how amazingly talented they are, I'm choosing to post their worst artwork - because it's funny!!  Vivayne even started a Facebook page for our crappy drawings!
The following weekend I was planning my artwork for Nicole Piar's wonderful Lovely Ink Project.  I'd already picked my phrase 'Choose Happiness' and was wondering how to illustrate it and realized my little cat looked so serene and happy.  So I sat her in a pretty garden and thought she illustrated the phrase really well.   Seeing her shortly afterwards on Print and Pattern was such a lovely surprise and I felt like all that cat anxiety had really paid off. 
There - that's the story of Rubbish Cat!  And the moral of the story is - your crappy artwork may become decent if you spend 3 days plodding away at drawing one thing - and if it doesn't you can share your desperation with other people and laugh hysterically at their crappy efforts.  Choose Happiness!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Lovely Ink

Free Inspirational Art Lovely Ink lovely ink

It's time to talk about Lovely Ink!! 

I've been asked to be a participating artist in Nicole Piar's Lovely Ink Project and I'm so flattered.  The other participating artists are incredibly talented and you may recognize some of their names!!

"Lovely Ink's mission is to uplift, to awaken a sense of wonder and to sprinkle inspiration around the world. A group of 12 artists have come together to create beautiful art that includes an inspirational saying. They deliver this art to you each month for a year in the form of a 8x10”printable that is ready for framing and a desktop wallpaper to cheer up your workspace. It begins on April 1." 

If you go to the Lovely Ink webpage you can find bios and samples of work from the twelve artists involved and you can very easily sign up to receive your free art every month.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Lilla Rogers Bootcamp February - Cuckoo Clocks!

Get ready for it!!!  There's about to be a tidal wave of cuckoo clocks washing over the internet - such is the influence of the magical Lilla Rogers.  There are 400 designer/artists on this course and they are sooo GOOD!!!
The theme of this month's assignment was...cuckoo clocks of course.  It's a lovely theme as the clocks themselves are full of details: the little house, the clock face, the animals and figurines around them, the cuckoo itself, the pendulum, the painted floral decoration, balconies, shuttered windows.  There are so many design elements within them and such huge variations between each clock that I thought it would be fairly easy to create something pretty and interesting even though I was a bit stuck for time.  I had to miss out the first week of sketching and went straight into the second week so rather than explore different concepts I interpreted the theme quite literally, thinking that the variety and interest within the subject matter would be enough to draw on.
We were instructed to create a design for a phone case (very clever - old and new technology) and were given a colour palette - initially a combination of dusky pink, acid/mustard yellows, palmolive greens, teal, purple and red - and at first glance I thought I'd give them a miss and choose my own palette.  There didn't seem to be much point in paying for expert direction only to completely ignore it though - so I decided to rise to the challenge.  And surprisingly (or not, if you consider the source) it worked.  The colours looked really pretty together.  So, all happy with that, I read the third week's installment from Lilla - another colour palette (the original one really with a greenier yellow and the addition of a lovely dusty navy and orange).  Hmmm.  I'd thought I was finished.
I couldn't not have a go.  I should have been working on a project but really wanted to try that navy. So I did.  I put the two versions to the vote on the FB page and the blue one won hands down.  I'm really pleased with the way it worked out.  It was refreshing to try something new and make it work.  I can't wait to do some designs to go with it. And I can't wait until the gallery opens and I can see ALL 400 interpretations of this theme!  The talent in this group is extraordinary!
Below are the two versions based on the two different palettes. Which do you prefer?

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day Everyone and Happy Birthday to my darling Isadora who's 9 today!!  You can see these designs featured on....Print and Pattern!!  Click the link and scroll down past the Paperchase things!!

Woohoo!  So pleased.