Monday, August 24, 2015

Mini Journals are Back! 4 new just added to shop...

I have added four new mini journals to my Etsy shop! 

I love portable little leather journals. They travel well, keeping any notes or drawings nicely protected, and make wonderful and affordable unique gifts.

I have been wanting to add more to the shop for some time. I finally had a chance to work on these over the weekend and love how they have turned out!

The structure is simple, but solid. These journals are approximately 3.5" x 3.25" (nearly square) and contain three, hand-sewn signatures of 70lb, acid-free, blank Strathmore drawing paper for a total of 96 pages in each.
 Bee Charm Mini Journal

For a finishing touch, I added a charm to the front of each journal. This gives them a little personality and makes for great gift-giving for you or someone special.
  Camel Charm Mini Journal    
 Starfish Charm Mini Journal (SOLD!)

I will be adding more like this, and in other color leather as well, so stay tuned for updates!


Mum Flower Charm Mini Journal

Saturday, August 22, 2015

New Nature-Inspired Fabric/Wallpaper/Gift Wrap Designs!

After relocating homes this summer, I am finally getting back to work on my other creative outlets, including my Spoonflower fabric!  Designs are also available as wallpaper and gift wrap.

I am working on a number of new designs based on my sketchbook exchange drawings. These would be fantastic for a number of projects including tea towels, pillows, bags, and more.

Here is a preview of a some of my favorites:
 African Daisies on Olive
 Small-Mouth Salamander

You can keep an eye on new designs by heading to my Spoonflower page, going to the left-hand side menu and choosing Designs not for sale to see the latest. I have to proof designs by ordering a swatch before they are released for sale, so please let me know if you see anything that you like!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Weed or not? Good sketching, either way!

So I have been posting mostly finished drawings lately, but I want to remind folks where it usually starts - sketching!

With a recent move to a new house and summertime activities with kids at home, my drawing time has been limited. But even if there is no major project or deadline looming, it is easy to find a few minutes (maybe 20 or 30?) to do a quick study or sketch of something that inspires you.

Yesterday evening, after a walk to the park with my older daughter, I wandered around our new yard for a few minutes, pulling weeds here and there. One plant with very broad, green leaves had popped up by itself in the muddy patch of the yard where some utility work had been done last winter.

Deciding that it must be a weed, I pulled it out. I was surprised, however, to see a long tap root emerge rather than a clump of weedy roots. Pale yellow/orange, the root smelled a bit like a vegetable, furthering the mystery. The stem of the plant was a deep purple red towards the root, fading into green towards the top of the leaves.

Whatever it is, I was intrigued and decided to grab some good paper and my pencils and start a little study. I wanted to do it life size to better document my puzzling find. This is a 12x18 inch sheet of Fabriano Artistico 140 lb hot press watercolor paper.

I added a bit of shading here and there and a few notes about the plant and that was it! Very satisfying to have some time to observe and document what, to me, is a mystery plant.

It can be easy to forget how important sketching and quick studies are, but they are a great opportunity to keep drawing on a regular basis and also to have a visual record of plants and other finds. These can be used at a later date to inform finished pieces. So whether you have a regular sketchbook or just some sheets of drawing paper to use when you get inspired, grab those pencils or pens and get started!
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