our house. in the middle of our street.

Having some fun drawing houses today. I've been driving thru the streets of Google looking at houses all over the world. 

Just learned about the house term "Fachwerkhaus." We have some tudors here in PA, but these are extreme and pretty fabulous. If it wasn't time to play with the kids, that is what I would be drawing...

PS - thank you to Madness for the blog post title... Great song! Reminds me of hanging out with the theatre folks back in high school.


Lat week I had the opportunity to work on a project involving mushrooms. I had a blast creating a myriad of textures and drawings. I can't quite show the results here... but I did want to share some of the process. Many of my more complex pieces begin this way... 

gts - it's a process!

The finalists for the Lila Rogers Global Talent Search were announced yesterday. 50 were chosen from 1500+ submissions. (yowsers!) Unfortunately, I did not make the final cut. However, I was pleased that so many of my fellow MATS classmates did. (More than half I think!) Way to go you talented gals (& guy)!

I wanted to share my process and my entry in hopes to get some feedback. As you can see... where I started and where I ended are very different. This tends to happen and I feel now (as I have in the past) that something gets lost when I do my "finals." 

I had a blast with my initial sketching for the assignment. (Which was a 5x7 journal, for Paperchase (a fun & fab UK paper goods company) with the theme: vintage playground.) Phase 1 shows my favorite developed sketches of the bunch.

Phase 1 - sketching concepts

Phase 1 - sketching concepts

Then I started tightening up once of the sketches & added color: (phase 2).

I loved the dynamic composition but wasnt sure about such a large character being front and center, and you couldnt see the playground images. I also know her hair & eyes needed work! So... I revisited some of my phase 1 ideas.

Phase 2 - coloring

Phase 2 - coloring

Somehow I got very into the vintage metal playground spring animals & in one of those happy and delirious post midnight art-making moments, I created the art in phase 3. (In hindsight, perhaps I should have taken a chance and explored my new loose "smooshy texture + line drawing" style further and sent my final in this method.) It was done with printmaking, collage & hand drawing.

Phase 3 - a new direction

Phase 3 - a new direction

However, instead I did a bunch of drawings inspired by this above piece, and ended up with my final design submission: phase 4, shown below. I really focused on color, composition and character development. I wanted to make sure it read well small and kept your eye interested.

Phase 4 - the final

Phase 4 - the final

I was initially confident in my submission however, soon after I began to have my doubts. I could have pushed the coloring further. I could have perhaps cleaned up the subtle details. (i.e. eggs in the design for the rooster saddle, clouds for the toucan, carrots for the rabbit etc.) After a disappointing morning yesterday, I reread the post regarding the chosen few. It seemed very logical that one of the main factors for the narrowing down to the 50 was "a strong, evolved style."  I can freely admit that I am still trying to develop & find my own unique illustration style. While it is evolv-ING it is not yet evolv-ED, And, as I have been doing graphic design and art direction for 15+ years it is only recently that I am delving deep into the world of illustration, surface pattern design and art licensing.

And now with a good night sleep behind me - I find I am actually quite happy to be freed up to make some new art and take all the things I have learned in the past few months and put them into play. And so with this... I will more forward and draw some more. I will make more art. More prints. More projects. And joyfully still run my design business. And I will eagerly await October and Part B of MATS.  

And on a final note... in a non related email that also got yesterday morning (from my local hair salon which I love btw...) this quote was randomly mentioned. It was very apropos for the day and I'm pretty sure I have never quoted a president before! :)

"I will prepare and some day my chance will come." – Abraham Lincoln

I welcome any feedback & comments whether here below, or via email

Oh and thank you for reading my longest blog post ever. :)