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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: studio, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 157
1. Studio Crush: Hum Creative

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Recently, I had the pleasure of stumbling upon the work of Kate Harmer, and became an immediate fan. Kate Harmer is an incredibly accomplished designer, creative director and owner of Seattle-based boutique design studio, Hum CreativeHum Creative focuses on brand and identity development, but their services run the gamut of logo design, illustration, custom typography and more. The studio got its start back when Kate realized that her freelance career was getting to be a bit too much for one person to handle, only a few years after she had graduated from an MFA design program at RISD.

hum 1

One of my favorite aspects of this studio is their client base. You might recognize clients like Death Cab For Cutie, She & Him, B.J. Novak, 826 Seattle, Penguin Books, and more. Many of their clients are based in the Seattle area, and it’s obvious that Hum focuses on bolstering their local community.

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hum great idea

hum 4hum SLUBP_Cool

 

Find out more about Kate, the team, and all that Hum Creative has accomplished so far.

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2. More inky beginnings! #studio #bookart #Sketch #drawing #ink...


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3. More inky beginnings! #studio #bookart #Sketch #drawing #ink...



More inky beginnings! #studio #bookart #Sketch #drawing #ink #illustration #poetry #bordercollie #dog (at 17th Avenue Studios)


Original post by Brian Bowes via Emergent Ideas: http://ift.tt/1G9HRYz

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4. My Furry Companion is Back!


No, I don't mean John (who is actually getting less furry every year, though don't tell him I said that), but Maddy, my friend's cat. We have been 'babysitting' her for years, including on the occasion of my friend's honeymoon, when Maddy nearly plunged to her death by trying to jump out of the velux in the studio. I only just grabbed her back legs in time.

These days she is a very old lady, so is far less trouble. She is not above stealing my chair as soon as I get up to make a cuppa though:


Even though she just sleeps all day, it's kind of nice to have her in the room with me. I do miss having an animal, but John and I are too keen on gadding about, so it wouldn't be fair. 

Our friends all know we are a soft touch with pets though, so don't need much persuading to act as kennels. One friend got stuck in temporary accommodation some years back, so we had her two cats for months. That turned into quite a challenge: poor Clyde expressed his disorientation in pee, on almost every carpet in the house. I expressed my feelings about this in an illustration:


We did have our own cat once. We stole Smudge from a neighbour. Well, not quite literally, but she came into our house more and more, so we put a collar on her with a message, asking who owned her. The man round the corner turned out to be allergic to cats (Smudge had been his wife's, who had moved to Ireland), so he was very pleased to officially hand Smudge over.

Unfortunately she wasn't an ideal addition to the studio. She once nearly ruined one of my pastel illustrations, by jumping up on my desk. I think Maddy's days of leaping across the room are behind her, so that's reassuring.

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5. How an #ink #drawing starts. #Sketch #studio #bookart (at 17th...


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6. How an #ink #drawing starts. #Sketch #studio #bookart (at 17th...



How an #ink #drawing starts. #Sketch #studio #bookart (at 17th Avenue Studios)


Original post by Brian Bowes via Emergent Ideas: http://ift.tt/1KfhZrP

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7. Holy Ghost Cats! Progress on The Boyler Kat. #cat #comics #ink...





Holy Ghost Cats! Progress on The Boyler Kat. #cat #comics #ink #studio #illustration (at 17th Avenue Studios)




Original post by Brian Bowes via Emergent Ideas: http://ift.tt/1GFLgNH


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8. How to Make 35 Concertina Sketchbooks!


Although my residency doesn't start until the autumn, I wanted to get the sketchbooks made well in advance, in case of difficulties. So, a couple of weeks ago, a HUGE roll of watercolour paper arrived in the post. It was 10m long and over 1.5m wide: a bit of a nightmare to manoeuvre, but perfect for making concertina books, as you don't need any joins (usually the trickiest bit).

This morning we got stuck in!

We had to pull a 6ft table up alongside my work bench, just to have somewhere big enough to cope with rolling the paper out so we could work with it. Everything had to be scrupulously clean too - another nightmare.


I had worked out that I would get 7 sketchbooks out of the roll's width, each a max of 2m long (so they would not be too unwieldy to exhibit at the university, when I'm done at the end of the residency). Given the roll's 10m length, that meant 5 sets of 7, so 35 books in total.

I decided to cut a couple of the 2m lengths from the roll first, to make things more manageable. I had intended to get the lighter weight paper I usually work on, but at the last minute went for the 140lb instead, so the finished lengths will be more sturdy. Trouble is, that weight means the paper is really springy, so absolutely everything was a two-man job. Thank goodness for John!


I thought long and hard about the order of things and realised that it made sense to do all the scoring (for the folds) before cutting the paper into the separate books. That way I could score across all 7 books at the same time, with only one lot of measuring. The books are going to be 14cm x 21.5cm, but you only need scores for alternate folds (because the folds go in 2 different directions), so we began by measuring out 28cm intervals down each of the 2m lengths.




The book-binder's devise I used on my last sketchbook experiment seemed a bit thick to be accurate enough for a long concertina (where any errors quickly multiply), so I sanded the sharpness off a bamboo pen, which was perfect. We didn't have a ruler long enough to straddle the complete 1.5m width, but John dug out a really long spirit level: 


That too needed a jolly good wash but, once clean enough, it saved a lot of time at the scoring stage, as we only had to measure up each edge of the paper and not in the middle too.


I had tried to use the spirit-level as a straight-edge for cutting across the width, but that was a BIG MISTAKE. It's depth interfered with the handle of the knife and so I have one rather raggedy cut, before I realised the problem. Ah well - it's a learning process.

Next job was to mark the width with the 12.5cm intervals, ready to cut the paper into strips for the separate books. It would have been really easy to mis-measure, so again I was glad to have my man-servant with me, double-checking as we went along. I was still rather nervous when I actually began cutting: 


We had to get 3 separate cutting mats lined up along the bench, because of the ridiculous size of the paper. It worked a treat though. By mid afternoon, we had curls of watercolour paper perched all over the studio, ready for folding:


I worked down the length of each book, folding at the scored lines we had created every 28cm: 


I lined up the in-between folds by eye, working without pre-measured scores, so that I could try and make sure the concertina didn't wander too far off square: 


The thicker paper took a bit more man-handling and got chunky quite quickly, which was another reason I limited the length to 2m: 14 'pages' of 14cm. 300gsm paper certainly has very strong opinions of its own, so the experience was a bit like wrestling an octopus at times. The folded books are still pretty springy and rather keen to explode - I have put them under heavy books to see if that tames them at all.


So that's the papers for 14 books done so far. I'll tackle another batch tomorrow, while I remember how we did it (and while the studio is clean). Although I must also get on with my book. Eek!

Plus I also have to make a cover for the sketchbooks. Instead of individual covers for each book, which would take ages, I was given a great idea by my sketch-buddy Lucie Golton: a detachable cover which you use again and again. She made me one as a present a while back, so I can copy her system. Thanks so much Lucie! 


I'll take some pictures as I make the cover, as well as showing you the finished item, but that's for next time.

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9. Concertina Sketchbooks: the Clever Details


I have now finished my 35 sketchbooks, ready for my residency at Manchester's Morgan Centre. I don't know if anyone out there is going to have a go at making the books for themselves, but in case you are, here's the final stage of the process.


The cover is more or less done, but two things are missing - we need the card insert, to hold the paper concertinas we created in place, and we need a way of fastening the book closed, because the paper will try to escape and inevitably unravel itself in the most inconvenient places you can imagine.

The insert is very straight forward. I bought a pack of A4 black card from WH Smith, 240g, which was perfect. The insert width needs to be approx 10mm narrower than your back cover board. The height, needs an excess of 30 - 40mm to fold over, both top and bottom. The centre between the folds should measure 5mm more than your concertina-paper height (which should also be about 10mm less than the height of the book cover). Score the excess and fold (gently, rather than tightly):


Test that this does in fact sit neatly into your back cover (I made lots of measuring errors during the course of making the books - it's best to double-check everything).

I tried using double-sided tape to stick the insert into the book at first. I figured that it would be less messy than PVA when trying to position the folded card, but it started to peel up after just a couple of hours, so I went back to PVA. 


I glued the top flap first, positioned it (folded under) on the inside back cover - 5mm from the top and outside edge - then put it under a couple of books to dry (squeeze out and wipe any excess glue first!)

I did the bottom flap once the top was secure. One trick: I was aware of the potential for excess glue to squeeze out underneath at this stage, unseen, and accidentally glue the insert shut, so I slipped a strip of waste card in between, before pressing the glued flap down. 


Again, put books on top to dry, or it springs up.

The end of the concertina-paper can now be slipped under the card and slipped out again when you want to replace your paper. Ingeniously simple solution for refills. I can't take the credit I'm afraid: my clever friend Lucie Golton designed it.


Many people use ribbon to fasten books. I didn't want to drill holes in the cover through, as it acts as a mini drawing board when I am using the book, so I wanted it unsullied. John came up with the Velcro system. I was going to buy Velcro tape, then discovered these nifty little guys:


Perfect. You pop one fuzzy spot onto the book, back and front, then attach the loopy halves onto a short strap, which I made from vinyl to match the spine. 


I just cut a piece of vinyl twice as wide as needed and 10mm longer each end, cut across the corners, then folded it in on itself, using PVA again. 

The beauty of the Velcro is that, when the book is in use, if the unfastened strap gets in the way, you can detach it and stick it back on at 90 degrees. You don't lose it, but it doesn't keep flapping and springing around the edges your paper.

If you found this project useful and want to check out other handy posts, try using the Hot Tips label on the right. I add the label to anything I think might be helpful to other people. It's a bit of a mix, with other ways of home-binding sketchbooks, but also tips for building up an illustration folio, how to do a school visit, create a 'Flat Plan' to plan out a book, or how to use  / where to buy particular art materials. All sorts. 

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10. ardagh & elwick: the secret is out!!!

So FINALLY we're allowed to share the exciting news!!! Guess which amazing duo are combining forces and BURSTING into children's book publishing as a duo!!?!!



You may have spotted photos from our studio and guessed already that SOMETHING IS UP...



Yes, PHILIP ARDAGH and ELISSA ELWICK have a four-book picture book deal with Walker Books! They'll be called 'Little Adventurers' and they're already working on the first one, due to come out in June 2016.



Here's what Philip says about working together:

I'm really enjoying working with Elissa on Little Adventurers because it's such a collaborative process. Being a children's book author can be a lonely business. I began my professional writing career in an advertising agency, partnered with an art director. When I write for radio I work with producer, engineer and actors. The same for TV. You're one of a team. With my previous books, I've enjoyed working with my illustrators but they've joined the process late in the day. The words have been written, the story complete. With Little Adventurers - the basic premise of which was Elissa's in the first place - we're forever exploring ideas, reshaping, and playing around with text and pictures.



The line between writer and illustrater is blurred. We're both interested in pictures and words. And - with additional input from Deirdre and Maria in editorial and Jack in design at Walker Books - we're coming up with something none of us could have created on our own. And, on days I'm working in the Fleece Station, Elissa makes us nice lunches. What's NOT to love about our Little Adventurers collaboration?




Edit: Look! Just tweeted in from the Bologna Book Fair by lovely writer Lucy Coats! By Charlotte Eyre in the Bologna daily version of The Bookseller (with a mention of the then-secretly-titled RAILHEAD by Reeve). Oh, and here's a link to the Book Trade announcement!



I'm proud to say that I was there at Elissa and Philip's very first meeting, at the Discover Story Centre in Stratford, east London. Philip was in his usual fine form, photo-bombing his heart out. And yup, there's Elissa!



I asked Elissa how they kept in touch, and decided that working with this VERY SILLY MAN might be a good idea:

BECAUSE HE WAS SO ODD! His imagination comes spilling out! We kept in touch over Twitter and he'd occasionally throw out ideas for existing characters I had and our working collaboration kind of stemmed from there.

So what's your background, Elissa? I heard you were once a champion skateboarder!


ALL LIES! It wasn't very long, I managed to blag myself some sponsorship for a little while when I lived in Northampton. But when I went to uni, I got way more into drawing and now my skateboard collects dust. I studied BA Illustration at Bournemouth and my first picture book deal was with Macmillan, The Princess and the Sleep Stealer. I also worked as Resident Storyteller and bookseller at an indie bookshop in Clapham called Under the Greenwood Tree. That was a great experience because I got to learn about the children's book industry from the other side of the counter.

What medium you use to make your pictures?

I use a mixture of pencil, watercolours and my computer. It's been so much fun bringing the Little Adventurers to life. Here are some early sketches.



Ardagh & Elwick will be working with editor Maria Tunney and designer Jack Noel. In the run up to Bologna Children's Book Fair, she was on the phone with Jack, and I managed to get a few words with him, to ask what they liked so much about Elissa's work:

I love Elissa's work because she makes everything look adorable; she creates her own sweet world. She's created these four characters and it's really nice, the relationships between them.

Gary Northfield and I love having Elissa in the studio, she's always up for a laugh and a cup of tea (and doesn't get upset when I accidentally eat all her biscuits). Here we are at the launch of Gary's Garden, both wearing themed Chompy-the-caterpillar clothes:



Philip's already quite active with our studio: I worked together with him on the Discover Storycloud project and he wrote a nice quote for the front of Gary's new book, Julius Zebra (also with Walker Books).



Here's Elissa at her desk in the studio. When she's done a good run of work, she rewards herself by watching a short animation. (And here, with homemade pot noodles.)



It won't be so much of a secret, they've already been seen about town together and posting photos of themselves with SLEBS:



So Elissa, this seems like an amazing prospect! But what will be one of your greatest challenges, working together?



NOT TRIPPING OVER HIS BIG FEET.



You can follow Elissa on Instagram at @elissaelwick on Twitter, also as @ElissaElwick, and check out her website, elissaelwick.co.uk.



And Philip on Instagram - @philipardagh - and Twitter - @PhilipArdagh.
So keep an eye out, this team is set to pull off some pretty amazing stuff...



Be sure to check out their new joint blog!

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11. “Considering” #pencil #Sketch #studio #watercolor...





“Considering” #pencil #Sketch #studio #watercolor #drawing (at 17th Avenue Studios)




Original post by Brian Bowes via Emergent Ideas: http://ift.tt/1a2UxkQ


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12. “Considering” #pencil #Sketch #studio #watercolor...

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13. mystery drink taste test challenge

One of my favourite things about reading a book is getting to go on adventure to somewhere new and exciting. And sometimes I don't like the book and it turns out to be a bad adventure, but sometimes it's BRILLIANT, which makes it all worthwhile. But it's fun to have other kinds of adventures, particularly when I'm working flat-out (finishing Pugs of the Frozen North right now). My lovely studio mate Elissa Elwick sometimes pops down to the shops and asks if I want anything, and we got into the habit of her buying a 'Mystery Drink', something she was pretty sure I'd never tried before. So we've embarked on the Mystery Drink taste adventure tour (also known as 'McIntyre drinks it so you don't have to'.)

First up: sugar cane drink. Sweet, a bit bland. Moving on. Rating on a scale of 1-10: 3



Two more cold teas with writing on them that looks Chinese. Also drinkable, but it gets more exciting. Rating: 5



Oo, now what is THIS? I bought it from the drinks cabinet in a Chinese shop on Deptford High Street, but the small-print English reads 'Deluxe Grass Jelly Dessert'. It turned out to have bits of black jelly in it, a rather nice sweet-ish drink and CHICKPEAS, which is a surprising addition to any drink or a dessert.
Rating: 5



This weekend, Stuart got into the swing of things and helped me taste-test another 'Grass Jelly Drink'.




Hmm, no chickpeas. Stuart said 'It tastes like flat Coca-cola with bits in it'. He didn't mind it, but said he wouldn't buy it himself. I rather liked it, the taste was gentle and nice and the jelly bits made it like something you'd get at a children's party, but more grownup-tasting. Rating: 6



If you buy this one, I'd recommend pouring/chunking it out into a glass or bowl, as all the chunky bits sunk to the bottom and were hard to suck out of the can. (And no, it doesn't taste like Branston Pickle, even if it looks like that.)



I went out to the high street to forage the next Mystery Drink: 'Wuhe Flavour Milk Tea'. I wondered (on Twitter) what sort of flavour 'Wuhe' is, and Alan Wyle advised me that it's a actually a place in Taiwan. So I read up on it:

The famous tea in Wuhe is 'Honey Black Tea', it doesn't mean that you add honey into the black tea. The tea leave is bitten by a tiny 'tea leave hopper', the saliva of the hopper interact with the juice of the leave, cause a scent of honey flavor, hense its name.

And you know what, it's VERY NICE! Well done, little leaf hopper. A lovely subtle sweet flavour and a nice, cold, full-bodied drink. Love this one. I think when you drink it, you're supposed to say 'WU-HEY!'. Rating: 8



Now apparently 'Mauby' is a Thing, but I wouldn't have known this unless I'd tried it and then followed the #mauby hash tag on Twitter. Right at the start, the taste was okay, but a split second later, the most horrible bitter aftertaste hit me and bizarrely, the only way to kill the taste was to keep drinking. But it was a very unpleasant experience. Rating: 2



Here's someone else's experience of Mauby:



Last up: Irish Moss (with oats). I think this was the strangest one. I thought the 'moss' would be something like the seaweed that's in McDonald's milkshakes, where it's just part of the consistency but you can't actually taste it. It would be a nice drink - sort of a thick, cold chai latte - except it has overtones of, well... dirt. You know that slightly unpleasant smell that hits you when you walk into a garden centre? Well, this is like drinking that smell. I don't get it.



But I made myself drink the whole can, just to see if the taste would improve. It didn't, but about fifteen minutes later, suddenly I felt VERY FULL. THEN I got it. This drink fills you up.



And then John Allison tweeted a video at me that he's seen on The Real McCoy on BBC2, and apparently Irish Moss helps with other things, too. ...Eek! Rating: 3 (but 8 for interest factor).



So thank you for coming on the Mystery Drink taste testing adventure with me. If you come across an unknown drink and want to share your taste test experience, tweet photos of it with the #MysteryDrink hash tag and let us know what you think. Or make a mini comic about it!

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14. A studio portrait...


It was fun having a bunch of my fictional illustration buddies drop by the studio. So I captured the event on film... lol!

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15. Tuesday - A Week in the Artist Studio

Monday officially sets the week in motion, and by Tuesday, I feel like I can best determine what kind of week it's going to be. Granted, things unexpected always happen, but this week Norah has a cold, which means a lot of play and a lot of snuggles. I need to keep my to do list simple and not expect to get everything done.

If she has a cold, I'm not too far from one, so self care (napping when she naps, eating well, etc) is just as important for me too.


Today I'm excited because I get to paint three lovely ladies sipping tea. I was going to do coffee (since I'm a coffee fanatic), but I wouldn't have been able to draw the wee tea flags that I adore so much. ^_^

Tuesdays are a day for creating. I do my best to reserve this day for painting or drawing. Sometimes if I am able, I will paint or draw Monday night to gear me up for Tuesday. Somehow that works for me.

Last night I was able to put 4 hours in (!!!) and got some Christmas art finished, and today is the reward by painting something fresh and new!


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16. Wednesday - In the Artist Studio

Made it to the middle of the week, and we're all still alive! Norah is getting some rest, and hubby stayed home, now sick too. Thankfully, I still haven't been hit with it, just a scratchy throat and runny nose..... allergies?

Wednesdays I try to make into web work days and painting if I can squeeze it in. I work on my Etsy shop if it needs attention, my personal website, and the Iowa Watercolor Society website...which I volunteer my time to do.

Today it was updating my Etsy shipping profiles to now allow calculated shipping costs. Yay! I really hate over charging people for shipping, and now I don't have to worry. Thank you Etsy.


I have also discovered today that I may need to invest in covered trash baskets.  >_<


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17. All Done!

The art for The Story I’ll Tell is finally done (!) and now in the hands Lee & Low books. It was an exhausting April because I insisted on re-painting several pages that I had already finished in order to improve them. (Changes, in watercolor world, often mean re-doing the whole thing.) Eventually, though, I had to call it quits and just send it off.

SIT-ship

Apparently the kitten wishes to be shipped as well.

I can’t wait to see how it will look when it’s all done. So far I’ve seen a preview of the jacket design and couldn’t be more excited to share it with you. Soon… soon.

Even though I don’t have any art to show you now, I do have some fun photos!

First off, the studio. Here’s where the magic happens. I only have the one desk, so I move the drawing board and put the computer there if I’m scanning stuff or doing things online. The board on the wall (far left) is blank now, but it usually holds the book’s latest thumbnails so I can see the whole project at a glance. I update the bulletin boards often for inspiration and reference. The large format scanner is a brand new addition. I feel so professional! (Compare to my studio setup five years ago, which involved a travel watercolor set, a folding camping table, and a hand-me-down PowerBook from 2002. And no scanner whatsoever–I took photos of my paintings back then with a crappy old digital camera.)

studio

The studio, looking tidier than usual.

Sometimes I think that thumbnail drawings are the most important part of the process. They don’t look like much and most of them end up in the reject pile, but that’s where it all starts. I love to draw these while sitting at a cafe.

SIT-thumbnails

Too many to fit in the frame.

I make my own dummies at various stages of the process to see how it’s flowing with the page turn.

SIT-dummies

The cat finds the dummies amusing.

More info about the project should be available soon. I’ll keep ya posted.

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18. High-Res Scanning - Grappling a Monster


Yes, it's definitely a bit of a monster, scanning all the artwork which I have selected from my archive of sketchbooks. I haven't counted how many individual sketches I have picked out to go into my urban sketching people book, but it's quite enough to keep John and I busy.

Originally, we had thought that John would do all the scanning for me, but I am working on the computer so much at the moment that he's having trouble getting sufficient time on the scanner. 



So we tried a bit of teamwork this week, which really speeded things up. I found the low res version of each of the images on the computer, which was tagged with a reference number to remind me which sketchbook it was in, then John ferreted through the sketchbook piles to find the right book...



...then he flicked through the book to find the sketch. We had marked the possibles with post-its right back at the beginning of the project, so that helped too:



John held the sketchbook down flat on the scanner bed for me, while I set the scan parameters, then saved and filed the final file, while he was trying to find the next one in the sketchbook piles. All very dull, but it's got to be done (and over 400 times...).

Then of course, I still had to spend a while on each of the images later, correcting the tonal balance and touching up anomalies, like unwanted marks which had transferred from the opposite page or other sketches showing through from the reverse. I also have to get rid of unwanted text  - my publisher is keen to remove any text that is not essential, so it doesn't create problems with co-editions.



We've made a fair old hole in the job now and I feel much better for it. I was originally going to wait until all the layouts were back, so I would know for certain that all the sketches I have chosen are in fact going into the book. It's possible that, by doing the scanning early, we have scanned some artwork unnecessarily, but I was getting a bit concerned, as time is passing and the deadline is looming. It's one of those tasks - very hard to know if you've allowed enough time for it, because it's impossible to judge how long you'll need. At least this way, hopefully I won't get caught out!

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19. Open Studios is coming! I hope you can make it to see 25...





Open Studios is coming! I hope you can make it to see 25 different artists including me! #santacruz #studio (at 17th Avenue Studios)




Original post by Brian Bowes via Emergent Ideas: http://ift.tt/1nAWQ54


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20. A Peek into the Sketchbook: Mail Art & Birds

I can't believe that it's been less than two months since I moved to the UK ... so much has been squeezed into that small amount of time that I'm still in a bit of a daze. But the good news is, of course, that I'm finally back on the internet.

Have tons of catching up to do but it will have to fit into the cracks between my college artwork. And I haven't been completely idle creatively either, despite 'real life' competing for my attention lately. Here's a glimpse into what I've been doing - tons of research and a few sketches for an upcoming class project. First though, here's the art-space I've set up for myself in our new, temporary home:

 

Sketchbook-1-by-Floating-Lemons

 

And a glimpse into the pages of a new sketchbook:

 

 

Sketchbook-2-by-Floating-Lemons
Sketchbook-3-by-Floating-Lemons
Sketchbook-4-by-Floating-Lemons
Sketchbook-5-by-Floating-Lemons

Sketchbook-6-by-Floating-Lemons

 

Different mediums, styles, cutting, collaging - lots of lovely experimentation going on. Birds (I'm developing a particular fascination with ravens and crows) and mail art. I've also been pinning for inspiration so if you'd like to have a look, check out my Pinterest Boards, Art: Mail Art, Art: Crows & Ravens, and Art: Birds. Have fun.

Wishing you a week full of flights of fancy. Cheers.

 

 

 

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21. A Writer’s Dream from Venice, Italy

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I’m just waking up on Giudecca Island to a volley of sights and sounds – a deliverance from the cathartic, but brooding history of Rome, from where we just came. Here, in Venice, I imagine I’m in a living painting, and an artist, with his paintbrush in hand, captures me peeking out my window – just now at the Hilton Molino Stucky, his studio across the way.

Outside, I hear the echoing serenade of tolling church bells, which I can pinpoint with my own eyes, to various steeples throughout the city that traipse along the river. Splashing waves steadily rise and fall onto green and blue algae-covered seawalls, looming directly below me, while power boats dot the landscape like steed on an aqua-colored field, gliding in various directions through the water carrying townspeople and holiday tourists about the city. And, in the foggy haze, we’re graced with this omnipotent view – and it occurs to me, I must be Dickens’ modern Venice in his “Italian Dream.”


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22. Love thy Studio + The Daily Sketch

A sink full of dirty half rinsed dishes; toys and paper scattered waiting for a foot to stomp on them; cluttered dining room table ranging from a stuffed bunny to a lint roller; laundry decorating our couch and our bedroom dresser; and shoes beckoning to be tripped over at the front door.

This is my house, most every day. It makes me feel squished, with no room to move without knocking something over or stepping onto something. I'm clumsy and that always means I will stub my toe, ram my elbow, slam my hand, or bang my knee. It's crazy how many nicks and bruises I get.

Yet, I look to my right and I see sun light beaming in from the windows in my studio.
An immediate "ahhh" relaxes my mind and all is right again.



If this winter has taught me anything, it's that my studio truly is my place of solitude. 


I used to tell people it was because I think artists are supposed to say that. It's expected of us to love our studio, a place where the creation happens, a place filled with things that inspire. Mine has been in a constant state of change since I moved away from home to college back in 2000.

When we moved into this house I was so excited to have a space I could settle in and not worry for a long time. I didn't expect it to be so cumbersome.

My studio has poor insulation, so during the hot Iowa summers and freezing Iowa winters, it's very uncomfortable at different times of the day. I've had to continuously change my schedule to fit. I've had to move everything constantly so that Brian could get to the windows for more insulation, or to add carpet scraps, or or or. And I know more is coming.

But this week, with all of the sun, regardless of the temp, my studio has been bright, warm, inviting, and mine. No more moving clutter to work on the dining room table, no more stepping on stuff when I get up to grab something I need, none of that. I feel whole.

I will bundle up, buy another mini heater for my toes, I will put a fan on my face and wear ice cubes, whatever it takes. I love my studio!

The icing on the cake? My daughter being able to spend time in the studio with me. That's what I've envisioned for a long time, my hope, my joy today. She makes the studio brighter with her smile, her giggle, and her curiosity. Bringing out the crayola crayons doesn't hurt either.



There is one other place in my entire house that I find peaceful and full of light. The only other place in the house that is always filled with the light rays, and that is our bathroom. It's silly, but when we moved in it was our first project, and it set the tone for the whole house (what we dream). It's full of birds. :)

It's so easy for me to be distracted by all the chores, they pull me away from my work and drain my creativity. Yet, last night, I didn't let it get to me. Here are this week's Daily Sketches and joys, #10, #11, and #12.




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23. The Time Machine...


I've been re-reading 'The Time Machine' and today feels very much like I've taken a trip back in time.  

Today I scanned the negatives of the photos I took of my NYC apartment at 161 W. 78th Street back when I went to Parsons in the last century.  It was so cool to recognize and revisit everything in that room.  It was just like being a time traveler - I wondered at the objects I'd forgotten and remembered.

Some of the circled treasures are:  my radio and toaster (that I'd hauled from Utah to Seattle and now to NYC).  My cup hanging from a wire (to keep the roaches off), the mini-stove (sitting on top of the mini fridge), my tea kettle and my illustration in progress. 

Everything but the bed was scrounged off the streets. You'd never guess how attached one can become to an old second hand toaster and radio.

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24. We are starting early, and we’re starting with cookies....





We are starting early, and we’re starting with cookies. #LifeIsShort #studio (at 17th Avenue Studios)




Original post by Brian Bowes via Emergent Ideas: http://ift.tt/1A10Sme


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25. StrawberryLuna studio : a dynamic duo

Post by Jeanine

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I’ve been a long time fan of the super talented design, illustration, and printmaking team known as Strawberry Luna. My art crush on this husband-wife studio might have a little to do with the fact that some of my favorite rock bands are among their impressive client list. And because they hand pull their beautiful silkscreens the super old-fashioned way. Or, because they hail from my hometown of Pittsburgh, PA. But, mostly I just am in love with their distinctive and smart graphic style! Best known for their silkscreen prints and posters, they also work on custom illustration and design projects including CD & vinyl packaging,web-ready icons, t-shirt designs, and logos & identity packages.

Their impressive client list includes Belle and Sebastion, Camera Obscura, Andrew Bird, Feist, Bright Eyes, Death Cab for Cutie and many, many more.

It was hard to choose just a few favorite pieces to share, so be sure to stop by their website and Etsy shop to see more!

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