Category Archives: inspiration

Take a Hike – Poetry in the Woods

There’s a hiking trail not far from my house that I love to go to, especially in Fall.

The longest trail is about 3.1 miles and goes through a prairie, along a small lake where motor boats aren’t allowed (which keeps it clean and quiet), and through the woods. It’s actually one of my favorite local hikes!

Along the trail there are these wonderful signs with beautiful poetry printed on them.

I find them so intriguing and comforting while exploring these trails. It would be so fun to set up something like this in my own backyard!

Afternoon Hike

It’s been over a month since I’ve been on the hiking trails! Life can get busy at times, and I forget to stop, take a deep breath and listen to the quiet in the woods.


IMG_2471It always feels good to step away from the computer, get some exercise and breath in the fresh air. Often times, I end up doing a little treasure hunt, looking for a variety of colors, shapes, textures and patterns.

IMG_2490 IMG_2481 IMG_2483

IMG_2476It was just the mental pick-me-up I needed for a Monday afternoon! Happy hiking!


Pages From My Sketchbook

I’ve been busy working on filling up more sketchbook pages these days. I usually have several pages in progress at any given time, which is why it seems like it takes me longer to finish a single page. Too many ideas to keep up with!

sketchbook page zinnias

sketchbook page locust frondssketchbook page moss

sketchbook page framed daisyI am always inspired to draw all sorts of things I find in nature – moss growing in the grass and ferns spreading across the forest floor on the trails. Sometimes I just start to doodle shapes to see where that leads. I do love to fill up a page with repeating pattern. So then I like to fill in the corners and empty spaces with a few of the swirls I love to draw.

sketchbook doodle lacey medallion sketchbook doodle lace medallion

In order to fill up more sketchbooks this year, which is on my bucket list for 2015, I’ve been trying to draw a lot more lately. My goal is to never stop drawing! I’m hoping to develop a fun set of surface patterns/fabric designs with these illustrations, so stay tuned!


Notes From the Garden: Spring Treasures

We are starting to see more and more signs of spring around here. This week we have new daffodils blooming and buds s.l.o.w.l.y. starting to open on some of our vines, shrubs and trees.

first daffodil of spring

spring greens

Sometimes you have to look closely to find treasures in the wild.

vinca vines

buds on crab apple tree

skull in backyard

look – a small skull! how cool is that!
bird skull found in backyard ducks in backyard

look – a mallard couple, probably stopping by to ask for directions to the nearest pond!

We finished all our spring clean-up chores, so now I’m ready to plant some spring pansies and spruce up our patio with a few flowering containers and baskets.

It’s such a fun time of year to start exploring our backyard again! You never know what treasures you’re going to find.



Fresh-Cut Flowers for Spring

The fresh-cut flowers I bought earlier this week are one of the most beautiful bouquets I’ve ever bought. We’ve had clouds, rain and storms a good part of the week, so these flowers cheer me up, make me think of spring, and brighten my office with pops of color and textures.

fresh cut flowers for April 6

Since I buy a new bouquet frequently (every other week), I finally remember the names of these flowers. Here we have light pink alstroemeria, purple statice, white daisies, lavender daisy mums, a light pink and fuchsia carnations, and fuchsia roses. fresh cut fuchsia roses fresh cut  pink alstromeria fresh cut  purple statice fresh cut  pink carnation fresh cut  lavender pom daisy fresh cut  white daisy

These bouquets include a small variety of flowers, yet offer a cheerful new palette each week, ranging from bright fuchsia, light pink, peach, lavender and purple, whites and hues of green.

fresh cut flowers for April 6Happy Friday to you! Hope you’re out enjoying Spring!


From My Sketchbook: Fresh Cut Inspiration

One of my latest favorite sketchbooks prompts for the year is to use my weekly bouquet of fresh-cut flowers for inspiration.

These new sketchbook pages were inspired by pom daisies, carnations, alstromeria, and roses from recent bouquets. Then I filled the page with a dramatic spray of leaves and a few of the swirls I love to draw. Next up, I plan to turn these illustrations into new surface patterns, so stay tuned!

sketchbook page daisy and leavessketchbook page carnations and leavessketchbook page alstromeria and leaves

sketchbook page rose and leavesIn order to fill up more sketchbooks this year, which is on my bucket list for 2015, I’ve been trying to sketch more lately. I’m hoping to fill up more sketchbook pages like these with flowers, leaves, flourishes, and other nature-inspired images I see out my window this spring.


Spring Fever

A trip to the local greenhouse is always a great cure for the Winter blues and Spring fever!IMG_9004

I love walking through the greenhouse, soaking up all the green plants and smelling the wet soil from a recent watering.

fern at greenhouse green arrangement at greenhouse

It’s exciting to see the bright colors of pansies and other flowers starting to show up when things are still brown and gray outside.pansies at greenhouse

orange flowers at greenhousepink flowers at greenhouse

IMG_9008Hope you are finding ways to get inspired these days to get through spring fever!



Fresh-Cut Flowers

Here’s a lovely way to start the week: the fresh-cut flowers I bought today make me think of spring, brightening up my office with pops of color and textures.

fresh cut flowers for March

Since I buy a new bouquet frequently (every other week), I’m getting better at remembering the names of these flowers. Here we have white alstroemeria, pale purple daisies, a lavendar purple mum, a fuchsia carnation, and more white daisies.

white Alstroemeria pale purple daisy

lavendar mum white daisyfresh cut flowers for March

These bouquets include a small variety of flowers, yet offer a cheerful new palette each week, ranging from bright fuchsia, pale purples, whites and hues of green. Happy Spring!


From My Sketchbook: January and February Doodles

In order to fill up more sketchbooks, which is on my bucket list for 2015, I have been coming up with lots of drawing prompts. One thing I’m doing is a monthly calendar. But instead of using it like a diary, I’m using it to do a daily doodle.

I’m happy to report that I completed my January calendar of doodles in the month of January.

sketchbook page january doodles

And my February calendar is ready for a  month’s worth of new ideas and new doodles!

sketchbook February 2015 doodles

I’m hoping to have a theme for each month’s doodles. It’s a great way to get started with my drawing projects for the day.


From My Sketchbook: Drawing Inspiration from the Greenhouse

Trips to the greenhouse are a pick-me-up during the winter months when everything is dormant and gray outside, but they also provide inspiration for my drawing, illustration and surface pattern design projects.

Here are a few color palettes I’m working with these days using tiny plants on display at the local greenhouse.
tiny plants color palettesSince I can’t bring all of them home on every visit, I try to bring home pictures to use for reference for new illustrations in my sketchbook.

sketchbook tiny fernssketchbook tiny plantssketchbook tiny plantsMy plan next is to draw these sketches digitally and turn them into a new collection of surface patterns! So fun!



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