Thursday, April 30, 2009

Friday's Five: Daisy May!

Yay it's May! Things I'm looking forward to: exciting art exhibit and road trip this weekend, apartment hunting, Mets game, and Memorial day weekend!! What are you doing in May?

Sweet daisy picks as modeled by Agnyess Deyn and Daisy Lowe, of course!

"I love when you stare at me I'm dressed so fresh so clean"

hehe ....appropriate lyrics by Outkast.
1. Betsey Johnson Daisy coat and 2. Betsey Johnson tights
3. Etsy seller Shlyskyward's dreamy daisy 50s dress
4. Marc Jacobs utilitarian daisy tote bag on ebay
5. Warhol's Daisy print on All

Shoes by D&G and Converse

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Windy Wednesday

almost blew away....

Urban Outfitters: crafty like a fox?

I guess this turned out to be supply week, which is great because supplies are one of my biggest inspirations! I was strolling through Urban Outfitters yesterday and came across a lovely little envelope/ stationery set which I saw was designed by Denyse Schmidt, who I just posted about last Friday. I went to their website hoping to find more and what I found entire sewing and craft section?? They're selling sewing kits, Built by Wendy patterns, dead stock trims, Singer sewing machines (vintage looking, of course) and "blank" clothing as your canvas to embellish. I was a little surprised, but I guess the DIY-ers out there are largely their demographic, so why not? You just know everything will be going on sale, and I'd love to snatchup that block printing kit..... hehe.
pictures via Urban

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Umbrella girls

Remember this post? well, I finished the Japanese woodblock class yesterday. Kind of sad, I liked having that on Saturday mornings, it made me feel like I'd already accomplished a lot by 1:00, and i still have sooo much to learn! We put up the final work to discuss and it turned out really amazing, everyone in the class was so talented, and we all produced such different styles and content. The umbrella girl with blue background was my final woodblock print, the grey is one I'm playing with on photoshop. i still want to carve out some raindrops and puddles in the blue, as shown in the grey one, so it's a work in progress.

5 color, 4 blocks

My panda, 2 girls, and final umbrella girl; other students works.

I love this gorgeous cat print!!

These works were by a student, Greg, who i think took to woodblock printing quicker than anyone. His final print was actually (8!!) carved blocks, the surfer on the left. I love the subtle colors of his fish print, too.

Orange and red mollusks

Candy colored herd of zebras

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Friday's Five: Supplies

Every artist and crafter needs motivation and inspiration, but when you have all that and you're still stumped?? fresh supplies always do the trick! whether you work with paper crafting, (i'm so into all the paper cut artists out there right now) mixed media work, traditional oils, or quilting these sites will have something to ease your supply cravings.

1. Paper Presentation: This store on 18th street in NY makes me giddy. it's beautifully set up, well picked items, and i always leave with a goodie or two. you can see why....they have portfolios, organizers, scrapbooking, journals, business card and invitation paper galore, the coolest cards i've ever seen (i used one of their vintage fabric thank you card sets for an interview follow up and ended up getting the job - uh huh, all the card's doing!)
photo via Paper
2. Denyse Schmidt Quilts: Not only are her quilts astonishing, but she'll share her knowledge and scraps with you! Denyse has a book, does workshops, and sells scrap bags and kimono pieces. Her website is great to get lost in.

images via Denise Schmidt

3. By now I'm sure most people have seen Matte Stephens incredibly cute needle felt animals. Check out this lady, too, YuYu Art who did the adorable kokeshi doll images below. If you want to try yourself, I found out through Felting Crafts on Crafts that has a needle felt starter kit! It's inexpensive, too!

images via Matte Stephens website

images via YuYu Art Etsy website

4. The Baren Mall: haha, yes I had to put some woodblock supplies up! In case you have a hankering to carve and print, or even have one made for you....

pictures via Baren mall
5. Joann Fabric and Craft: are you kidding me, you say? this is too obvious!! funny story- I worked there for 4 years!!! high school and part of college- it was the longest job I've had at one company! It was a great work environment, talking to the little old lady quilters- and the advice they have??? Priceless, and they'll talk your ear off. Bonus?? 50% off online coupon! enter promo code TTF120 at checkout.
Fun scrapbooking supplies! image via

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I heart Earth Day!

Hi there, happy Earth Day! I've been trying to think of some resolutions for this year. I'll be very honest and tell you I'm not the best at recycling- I have no bins for glass, paper etc. However, I do hold on to everything, (buttons, paper scraps, magazines)and will try to reuse them more in my illustrations. I'm going to organize my supplies so I wont think I'm out of something and buy a new one! I'm going to use both sides of the paper especially when I'm just printing to see how colors or layout comes out. I also pledge not to buy clothing from certain low end retailers that use unfair labor, poor fabric and generally cheap quality in hopes to save a buck. According to the Environment Select Committee, textile waste has risen 23% in 5 years. This is partially because the mostly man made, unnatural fabric these stores are using cannot be recycled, and since the clothes are such poor quality, they're often thrown away quickly. I also hate how the prints and design are frequently ripped off because of their uber fast turn around- so not fair! How about you guys, any plans for going greener this year?? Need something to wear around town while you hug trees? Try Daughter Earth! Run by my good friend Katy, this is a clothing line I fully support- they have amazing soft organic bamboo tees, totes and accessories, and a portion of proceeds are donated to various nature and animal organizations so you'll look très chic while being très green!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Friday's Five: Fashion Illustrators

There is absolutely nothing better than going to a great museum exhibit and getting some much needed inspiration. Attending a lecture by people I was in awe of and seeing them in "real-life" with incredible personalities, insight and advice was an invaluable experience. Wednesday night The Society of Illustrators hosted a panel of fashion illustrators and models. It turned into a conversation between the panelists about the importance of fashion illustration, the relationship between photography and fashion illustration and the bias museums and people have of fine art over illustration. They all shared so much about the industry, how it's changed, and how current fashion illustrators are the hope for the future. In the fashion and art industry this is a very refreshing attitude!Fashion illustrator, curator of the show, and clearly sharp dresser, Robert Richards talked about photography losing its credibility with everything being photoshopped to death, "if it's going to be a fantasy, then come to us!"

Anna Bayle, the 1st Asian supermodel called " the face of the 80s" for good reason, holds an illustration of herself done by Alvaro for Vogue China. Pictures from top right, Alvaros illustration, editorial tears, all via Anna's website Anna in white gown, via

Now for your installment of Friday's Five: Fashion Illustrators

1. Bil Donovan -this man (below, hand closet to the wall) is a phenomenal illustrator. How phenomenal? He just signed a year long contract to be Christian Dior Beauty's in house artist. Donovan has worked with absolutely everyone and his website is gorgeous, so do not miss!

All photos were taken at the show, or via Society of Illustrators

2. Karen Santry -I took notes about the panelists before it all started, and she ran in late, in the most amazing outfit, 4" heels, and huge black felt fan hat, and I just wrote, "FABULOUS!" She works as a professor at FIT and I would do anything to take a class with her. Do yourself a huge favor and check out this article in the New York Times, featuring more of her work and her artists in residence studio apartment!

This book always pops up on my Amazon recommendations: Big Book of Fashion Illustration: A Sourcebook of Contemporary Illustration. Guess who did the cover? Karen, of course.

See? it's 3-d! so cool.

3. Elena Ambotaite- Gorgeous. Blonde. Dimples. Model. Wait no, illustrator! Actually both. She was charming and insightful about the work, having seen both sides. She 's modeled for Donovan before, too.

Illustration via

4. Alvaro- Yes, he goes by one name, because he's that good. His story touched me, as a a little boy growing up in the Bronx, he saw Antonio Lopez's work, one of the illustration greats, and was determined to meet him. He did, and worked with and learned from him for years, until Antonio's death in 1987. Alvaro's message was that you can do anything you dream and put your mind to, and the way he was so emotional and passionate about his and the other illustrators' work, was really touching.

Alvaro and Karen Santry at the opening reception. Picture via Society of Illustrators

1st ever illustrated Vibe cover by Alvaro

5. Last but so not least, the late Antonio Lopez- I think it's very sad that fashion illustration is not a well known art form, because people miss out on beautiful work such as his. Karen had a hilarious story about living in NY in the 80s and going to Union Square, where Antonio lived, and literally digging through the trash for discarded illustrations! she said her and her friends would pin these up as inspiration. He had so many different styles, you can tell he was always experimenting and trying new things.

Illustrations for collage via,,, and

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Pocketful of ewe

Katy of Daughter Earth recently turned me on to a wonderful illustration publication called Pocketful Illustration Magazine. Haven't heard of it? It's such a cool idea- they throw out a theme and get submissions from illustrators who aren't well known and do twice a year issues using printing on demand and sell it on Amazon . This is the 3rd issue and the theme is "Draw me a Sheep." Now of course the first thing I think of is knitting and wool and needles and sheared sheep, and this book, A New Coat for Anna , a favorite of mine when I was young about a mother going through the entire process of making her little girl a coat.

Gorgeous illustrations of the wool turned to thick flowing yarn, and picking fresh berries for the red dye are exactly why this book has stayed with me in my head!

And here's my submission, now their site (yay!):'s a little freaky, I swear I haven't seen that book in years until I just pulled it up on Amazon, and the colors of the cover and my illustration, I didn't play around with them at all, that was the 1st colorway that came into my mind.......

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Bunny Blossom

One thing I've never experienced that I would lovvvve to is Hanami, or blossoming of the cherry trees that happens April-May. I could see it right in Brooklyn and for some crazy reason I've never made it, but this year, weekend weather willing, I'm determined to!
My Bunny Blossom

Framed and buttoned up!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

You can stand under my...

I'm working on my final project for woodblock class right now, a five block, five color print and I've been doing some sketches in sharpies to help visually separate which colors will go on which block. I decided on the umbrella girl because I'm dying to try out some techniques for the rain and use bokashi, or gradation, and get to play with the fun Marimekko-like print... not to mention the weather we've been having. Check out these great umbrella themed woodblock prints too!


Harunobu's "Praying for Rain" print

A Rainy Twilight by Bertha Lum, 1905 print via

Bertha Lum "Geisha Girls" print via

"Amabare" by Katsuyuki Nishijima print via