Mid-Term Reflections

This week marks mid-term, the middle of the Fall semester. That means we have eight weeks behind us and eight weeks left to go.

It’s thrilling to look back at the projects I’ve done so far, and tally all the great things I’ve learned, some of which I’ve shared here recently.

  • We’ve covered various techniques, from drawing, sketching, pen and ink, digital college, acrylic painting, and line drawings.
  • We’ve tried several different usages, from editorial illustrations to advertising illustrations, posters to trading cards to icons to greeting cards, to logos and labels.

I think one of the most important skills I continue to build on is developing an eye for the right design elements for the purpose and audience. We are also learning the business side of being an illustrator, which is exciting to dream about.

I’ve also designed several websites with new web skills, primarily how to use better html code for search engine optimization, how to organize information better and in more visually appealing ways, how to set up interesting photo galleries, and how to design a site to be flexible for a desktop screen, tablet and mobile device.

I’m excited about all the things still left to cover in the next eight weeks. Posters, spot illustrations, logos, packaging designs, tshirt design, self promo product, and more fun stuff!

I hope you’ll continue to stay with me on this journey. Thanks for stopping by!

Summer Curriculum and Project 1

In addition to the digital photography class we are taking this summer, my good friend K and I are developing our own summer curriculum to stay creative and continue to challenge ourselves. Don’t want to get lazy and rusty over the summer!

We came up with a pretty ambitious list of activities to work on, new techniques to try, drawing and illustration practice, and design challenges.

These illustrations you see throughout this post are my results for our first assignment – to create an image with pen over paint washes, splatters, or blots spread randomly on a piece of paper.

I am not very good at thinking in the abstract, so I had a hard time “seeing” images in my original paint blots. But I tried to free my mind of pre-conceived notions and just “feel” it. Now that they are finished, I really love them. Giving each piece a title was fun too.

We are also going to work on a personal project over the course of the summer. My personal project will be to develop a collection of surface designs that I could have printed with Spoonflower to make my own products with.

Travel Sketching and Painting

I received this fabulous handmade travel kit from Michelle that I want to show off to you. Hope you don’t mind!

She made this adorable patchwork notebook for me. Notice all the cool patchwork and stitching on the front cover.

I made a couple sketchbooks to put in the inside pockets – a perfect fit. Notice all the wonderful stitching and details on the inside too.

She also felted this beautiful field kit that I can hook onto my belt loop when I’m on the trails.Inside fits this amazing little treasure:

It’s a compact watercolor set about the size of my iPhone and pack of artist cards!

The paint kit includes 12 watercolors, a small retracting brush, three shallow mixing palettes, a water bottle and a sponge. And all that fits inside the cute little box for travel. How adorable!

I found these adorable little (barely 2 inches long) colored pencils in my stash so I decided they would be perfect to size to include. I will tuck a small piece of sandpaper inside to sharpen the pencils without wasting the color.

Now I just need to figure out where to go to try out my new field kit. I’m thinking about starting in our backyard as soon as our gardens come back to life, but I would also like to make a trip to our botanical gardens and the farmers market. Where would you go if you had a new travel art (or sewing) kit?


Spring is s l o w l y starting to show itself around here, but it’s coming s l o w l y.

Our weather outside hasn’t been cooperative enough lately for us to be outside, gardening or just enjoying some sunshine.

Instead, we decided to paint a couple rooms over the weekend. We bought our house three years ago, and still, all the walls are white. How boring and sterile! We finally settled on this color for the main wall in the kitchen:
2 OZ.

and this color for the rest of the kitchen and the living room.

2 OZ.

We are almost done, just need another half gallon to finish up. Then we get to put everything back together and rehang our pictures. We have a lot of photographic art throughout the house, and the inspiration for these colors came from two gorgeous photographs we purchased from Scanlon Photography while they were exhibiting at the Madison Art Fair.

A. Le Logge, Tuscany

Barchetta, Bellagio

These pictures will hang on the main wall in the kitchen; just need to buy one more and some frames.

I have never painted before, and I’m surprised how much I enjoyed it. Next, we’re trying to decide what color to paint our family room.

family room

Maybe we will be able to settle on one of these colors.