Mar 27, 2009

IF: Poise

I just finished my ad for Picture Book, and still had the idea of dress up on the brain, but this time in a calmer setting. For the newest IF theme, "Poise," I thought of the word in relation to my mom's mantra growing up. It was so important for my mom, to instill in my sister and I, that we be poised and graceful. Often times my mother made clothes for us (usually matching I might add), and when I was getting measured I would practice my poise. Can't say I was always successful at it.

Picture Book

Here's my latest illustration to be printed in Picture Book 2010, an annual publication which features promotional pieces of children's illustrators. It's probably one of the busiest pieces I've ever done, and the most challenging in terms of keeping my main character in focus. I think, even with the chaos around her, she manages to grab your eye, and hopefully stir interest in perusing the wonderland that is her mom's dressing room. If you doubt that, just take a look at the dancing dog!

Mar 24, 2009

Discovering Ben Shahn

I love to post about personally discovering artists that were big in there time and whose art have a timeless, very current style. Ben Shahn is no exception. On Monday I was in a local antique shop with my husband, who was perusing the bookshelves, when he picked up this beautifully bound hardcover complete with case, containing wonderfully graphic illustrations and typography by Ben Shahn.

The book is a poem, written by Wendell Barry in response to the assassination of the young President Kennedy, originally published in The Nation magazine. It is entitled November 26, 1963. So I did a bit more research on Ben Shahn and discovered a lot of material, as well as the huge influence he has on current illustrators. In fact, the site I frequent, Illustration Friday, actually posted a quick little bio about him.

Funny how we may come to discover things that are right under our noses. But it's great when the discovery is organically grown and only cost $5.

Mar 20, 2009

Latest Promo

Got my latest postcard promotional back from the printer and I'm happy with the results. The paper has a nice weight to it with a satin finish. I also have a corner rounder, a handy dandy industrial piece of equipment that, well, rounds corners. The result is a little something more special than your average postcard.

Feets are wet

It's been a while since I've put brush to canvas, and I'm sharing it with you because I guess I promised to do that. I'm kind of apprehensive about it since I'm opening myself up to all kinds of scrutiny, but that's just the nature of the business, and I do believe it's meant to be shared. Plus, it's the best way for me to grow and get better.

Anyway, I'm entering this piece for a group show that's being juried by Alden Staffing. It's moderately sized measuring 18" x 24" and it's oil and graphite on canvas. The theme is "Awfully Beautiful" and this I titled "A Hair's Breath from 16." Keeping fingers crossed....

Mar 17, 2009

IF: Legendary

The first thing that came to mind when I thought legendary was Myrna Loy. I'm embarrassed to admit she was a relatively new discovery for me. My husband and I watched every Thin Man movie over the past few months where she starred so perfectly alongside William Powell. She was so brilliant in those films I wanted to know more about her. I was amazed to discover that she dedicated her time as a full-time employee for the American Red Cross throughout WWII and only acted in one film in that time. So I wanted to illustrate Ms. Loy after this discovery. Her talent, beauty, and selfless dedication make her legendary.

Mar 12, 2009

For the baby...

Here's my latest effort in the homemade stuffed toy craze. She enjoyed a bit of time in my studio among the other birds before being shipped off to a newborn. Hope you like it little Maya!

Illustration Friday: Intricate

While I work on a new, very intricate illustration for my ad in Picture Book, I decided I'd take a break and play with the intricacies of a not-so-old-fashioned wedding dress.

Mar 11, 2009

New Princess

Thought I'd post this new piece which can only be found here and on my rep's new site, in honor of her new, beautiful baby girl, Maya, born March 8, 2009. Congratulations, Mela!!

Mar 10, 2009

An award for me? Thanks!

I had the honor and pleasure of receiving the Kreativ Blogger award from Angela Matteson, a fellow talented artist. Thank you, Angela, for the sweet mention. The rules go something like this--I'm supposed to list six things that I love or make me happy (same thing right?) and six additional blogs that I feel merit this award. So here goes:

Here's what makes me happy:
1. My hubby
2. My doggy
3. Sunny days
4. French fries
5. Trips to Paris
6. Movies (my latest faves are the Thin Man movies...gotta love Myrna Loy).

Here are a few blogs, my newest discoveries, worth not just a peak, but a loooong perusal:
1. Maura Cluthe
2. Colleen Coover
3. Marci Senders
4. Happy Doodle Land
5. Tamsin Ainslie
6. Claire Robertson

That's all folks!

Mar 5, 2009

Slowly But Surely

My painting studio is slowly coming together, much slower than anticipated. February has proven to be a month for distractions and paperwork (with tax season in full swing). But with each visit I bring another book, a chair, a couple table legs, and lots of material to get ideas flowing. Of course, and not soon enough, I finally have internet. As a matter of fact, this is my first entry here.

My dog hangs out with me too, so he and I can enjoy walks by the creek. He has a nervous energy that makes him a little uneasy with the building's old creaky sounds, the blazing gas heater above, and the door slams by the new neighbors or maintenance guy. And while I have wonderfully large windows, they sit a bit too high from the floor, which makes him too short to observe his favorite past time, looking out the window watching passers by.

So we're both adjusting after working from home for a good while. But despite some of the changes, I know it'll be a very exciting adventure.

Mar 2, 2009

And with thoughts of spring...

...come thoughts of rain. Here's the partner piece to my latest Illustration Friday post, "breezy." I just finished it and am pretty happy with the results. I always wanted one of those clear vinyl umbrellas. I think it would make rainy days much more bearable for me, especially when trudging through the streets of Manhattan.

Happy March

The Snowy Day © Ezra Jack Keats

As we draw closer to the spring season, I'm reminded that we're not close enough, when during the first evening of March, here in New York, we are welcomed by a snowstorm. I'm reminded of one of my favorite children's books growing up by Ezra Jack Keats, The Snowy Day. I'm also in awe of how much influence his work has had in my own work, and I never really realized it until recently. I guess that's where the subconscious plays a lovely role.

The Snowy Day © Ezra Jack Keats