In my last post, I shared about my latest design, and today I thought I'd reach back a few years and share about an older design. I don't love all my older stuff, but this one I still find charming.
According to Facebook, I drew this in my sketchbook on October 11, 2016. That's 7 days before Ransom was born! Back then I was only drawing with pen and paper, now I mostly use my iPad.
I was inspired to draw this because I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Stuff You Should Know, and the episode that day was about polar bears. I apparently found it super interesting and inspiring.
A few years later I turned this thoughtful polar bear into a coloring sheet.
And to close, here's a picture of the cutest little chef you ever did see, helping me me make some pizza last Friday.
The is my first post of the year so I gotta say it -- happy new year!
My first new design of 2021 is this cutie pie squirrel for Valentine's Day.
I created this from a sketch I did a few years ago. Here's a look at the original.
Then I of course had to make it into a repeating pattern. I think it turned out pretty cute.
I think I'll make one or two more patterns in this same series as well, using the same color scheme and feel. I started one this morning while Ransom was coloring.
In my Etsy shop, I will soon have a Squirrel Valentine's Day card available, so stay tuned for that! I also think the design would look nice in a nursery.
(I've been a little addicted to finding fun mockups lately. I got that cute bassinet one from Rocket Mockups on Etsy.)
Bring it on 2021.
I thought it was time for an Eye Candy post -- where I share some art I'm liking by other artists. This one is holiday themed of course. Christmas is a week away!
So I'll just stop talking and share some pretty things. If you like it too, click on the image to find out more.
That last one is my favorite. ;)
I thought I'd pop in today and share about some in-process projects.
Amidst shipping Christmas orders, I've been working on this house portrait for a parent from Ransom's school.
I've already blocked out the shapes--with the help of that grid--and now I'm going in and adding details. Bit by bit it will become a home.
Ryan snapped a pic of me working on it this afternoon next to our beloved Christmas tree.
Even though I haven't share about it in awhile, I also am still working on a personal project with a friend -- our first children's book. Yep, it's Finnegan. I'm adding in a few extra illustrations, and then will format it for self-publishing. Here are the latest two designs for the book, I won't give them any context (which is hard because I love contextualizing things). You'll just have to buy the book when it comes out.
I'll keep you posted when that happens.
I thought I'd take a break from talking about my own art and share some autumn art projects I've been doing with my son.
It's always hit or miss what he'll be interested in doing, so don't think we are just blissfully making art everyday together, but here are some sweet projects recently.
The fall colors here in Portland for the past month have been spectacular. We collected leaves around our neighbor and then made leaf prints by painting the leaf and then pressing it on to the paper.
The leaves were so lovely we decided to preserve them by laminating them and taping them to our big living room window.
They look so brilliant on the rare occasion when the sun is shining through them.
I wanted to keep the leaf fun going by painting around the leaves this time, but Ransom just wanted to paint.
With Thanksgiving just a week away, I plan on us making some hand turkeys soon, and creating some placements for the big day.
And THEN it's time for Christmas crafts! I can't wait for that.
I'll close by sharing this sweet snail mail tote bag, now available in my Etsy shop.
I've recently taken a little break from drawing florals and birds and gotten back into repeating patterns.
I was so happy a couple of years ago when I finally learned the trick of creating a design that can be seamlessly repeated thanks to Liz Kohler Brown's Skillshare class. It was close to the holidays and this was my first pattern.
I geeked out on patterns for awhile, but then started focusing more on birth flowers, birds, and tattoo designs. Frankly, because they were selling and my patterns were not.
Well, something about the holidays approaching has gotten me all into cozy patterns again. I've created three in the past month. First for Christmas, like I already shared. Then I created this snail mail pattern.
And I loved that color scheme so much I created another simple geometric one.
And I think I'll create one more with those same colors .
This morning though, Ransom and I made some patterns with dot stickers and the letters of our names. It was a hit.
I've been trying to get him to paint with me all week and he has refused, but he just loved this simple sticker project. Less messy and unpredictable than paint, I suppose. Sometimes I see a little perfectionist in him.
For someone who draws a lot of adult coloring pages, I haven't been much of a color-er myself in the past.
Well, hanging out with a just-turned-four-year-old has changed all that. Ransom recently has gotten into coloring Halloween-y things like jack-o-lanterns and monsters. They are all over his bedroom walls right now.
I got a little jealous.
I probably shouldn't tell you this, but there are so many free printable coloring pages out there. We've had hours of entertainment in our household.
Here are my recent masterpieces.
And of course I got inspired to create my own pumpkin coloring page. Later this week I plan on sending it to my newsletters subscribers, and after that making it available on Etsy.
I highly recommend coloring while watching a scary movie. It makes it much more bearable. I'm also a big fun of colored pencils, because I like to be able to shade.
(Sign up for my newsletter to get a free printable pumpkin coloring page later this week!)
I don't know what's going on with me and snails lately, but I've re-invented two old snail drawings in the past month. My "I Miss You" Snail, and now, my Christmas snail! I originally drew this little guy a few years ago
The original drawing is now hanging in my son's room. I re-drew him on my IPad, and he's now my Christmas 2020 design.
I hadn't originally planned to add words, but once I was finished with the design, I felt inspired to add some verbiage regarding Christmas being slow this year. Whether you like it or not, there will be a lot less going on this holiday season.
Pretty soon I will have this design available as cards in my Etsy shop. In the meantime, you can snatch up some cute snail wrapping paper on Society6.
Lotsa little snails, slowly getting ready for Christmas.
See all my available wrapping paper here.
Back in 2018, I published my first coloring book, Beautiful Bugs.
It was a learning experience, creating a self-published book. I'm still proud of it and still sell copies of it every month.
Ever since then I've wanted to publish another one. In between tattoo designs, turtle illustrations, and other flights of fancy, I have been s-l-o-w-l-y working on an ocean-themed coloring book. I thought I'd take this post to give a little progress report of it.
My original goal was to have 20 illustrations (my bug book has 12), but I've since decided to lower that bar to 15. So far I have seven, and am almost done with my eighth. As I draw them I make them available as printable coloring sheets in my Etsy shop (and if you're on my email list, you've received them as free downloads). Here's a look back at what's completed so far . . .
It's fun to see them all together like that.
The next one I'm working on is a shark.
I'm kind of just making it up as I go.
Do you have any ideas for what my next ocean-themed illustration should be?
In our new house, we have our own master bathroom, It's teeny tiny, but also so luxurious because we didn't have our very own toilet in our old place. Anywho, the view from my porcelain throne is this snail. I drew it years ago, from a photograph of a snail that I encountered on a hike.
Confession: when I frame my drawings for myself, I eventually get tired of looking at them. I start not liking them the more I look at them. They eventually end up in a closet because I don't want to look at them anymore.
This guy though, this guy I still enjoy looking at. And being where it is, I look at him a lot.
So I decided to pull him out again and spruce him up for a card design. I thought this card might resonate with people in 2020, wanting to reach out to loved ones.
I just ordered these from my printer, so sometime in the next month they will be available in my Etsy shop. I'll keep you posted.
(And now when you buy any card from me, you can choose to have me send it directly to your loved one with your greeting inside, hand-written by me. No extra charge. Saves you a stamp.)
And on an unrelated note -- man life is weird right now. It just keeps getting weirder. I'm in Portland, Oregon and can't be outside because of the smoke from nearby forest fires. The sun is orange. It feels apocalyptic.
Hope you're safe wherever you are.
A place to share the process. A space to be honest about the triumphs and trials of my daily life as an artist and mama. Writing motivates and refreshes me.