When participating in art festivals, I often watch and listen to how people respond to my art and selection of illustrated letters. The Letter L for Leaves below became a candidate when I listened to one young mother expressing a wish that it had a lily with the leaves.
As you can see in my first attempt on illustrating the letter L it is pretty simple. It was my first L in my project of doing an illustrated alphabet.
A lily? Why not! Why not add lily of the valley! I think it gives it a bit more interest. Now L is not just for leaves, ladybugs, lace and lavender, but lily of the valley as well! Who knows? It will be interesting to see how well it will be received in 2017.
As an illustrator who presents work at art festivals, I find listening to comments and feedback are both heart warming and inspirational. Many like my illustrated letters either for themselves, or for their children or grandchildren, or as a gift to someone else. What does become apparent is what's missing in what I offer. While I can not please everyone, the urge to create another variation of a letter is fed by the wonderful people I meet while they view my work.
In reviewing my offering with the letter W, it became apparent more variation was needed.
W is for Wool
W is for Watering Cans
So while I was up late one night looking at the moon, the wolf inspiration hit. It will be interesting to see how people will respond. Meanwhile it will be back to the drawing board to think up of yet another letter illustration for a series I call Alphabet Soup.
I have to admit, although I love the letter V, it is not that easy to come up with ideas for it. The word Vulture just does not do it for me. So as I thought of the wonders of summer and its lazy days on the porch, I came up with V is for Vine as well as Veranda. If you note, there are suggestions of violet and verbena in the color scheme. Okay, I know, I am pushing it.
I have been reviewing some of my artwork as of late and at times feel the need or inspired to go back and make some changes. Maybe it is color or sometimes there is just something missing for me.
In this case, I change the wording, along with the color, pattern in the cup, and adding a few things such as the bird and ladybug. Oh and of course added a few extra flowers! Adding live interest comes from my years of living in greeting card world. Live interest such as the bird and ladybug seem to warm up the illustration for me.
Maybe this is just like looking at a room and having the desire to freshen it up a bit by changing the wall color and rearranging the furniture. Anyway, as I worked on it, it made me think to count my own blessings and to be thankful.
This May has had its ups and downs. This morning when I looked out my window, I thought I woke up in late February! There was snow on the roof tops as well as some light coverage on the grounds! Fortunately by the afternoon it was gone.
All the more reason to finish an illustration I was working on. I pulled up an old illustration that I did called Coffee Pot Quotes.
I had done this illustration years ago, when practicing using fonts. However, it did not really resonate with people enough to buy it. I still liked the shape of the coffee pot, so I thought I would start again using the coffee pot shape. I am hoping that Coffee Pot Surprise will tickle someone's fancy this year enough to buy it.
There was a phrase from a piece of verse copy that has stuck in my head: "pansies stand for thoughts". For years as a greeting card designer I would design to that piece of copy. Now I think how appropriate it is for today, on Mother's Day as we think of our moms and all the wonderful things they did for us; those little things that really turned out to be big things as we look back. I think of those things often now that I am old and my mother is gone. She is always in my heart and my thoughts.
So for all you women out there that chose to one of the hardest, yet most rewarding job of Motherhood...
A while back I did a piece that was about home. It was an early piece and though I sold one, it really did not blow up my skirt, as my husband would put it. Because I have always thought of home as a blessing, whether it was the home I grew up in or the home I live in now, I thought to take another shot at it.
Inspired with the feeling that spring is upon us as well as seeing the birds starting to visit the abandoned birdhouse outside my window, this is new illustration I created.
Yep, I was revisiting letters of the alphabet again. This time the letter O became a candidate for another new illustration. Although owl is obvious, it still was fun to tackle. Besides, I have been getting some owl requests from owl fans, including my 3 1/2 year old grandson, Oliver. Not only is the O for owl, but for opening in an oak tree.
One of the many things I do while watching the flows of people at art festivals, is to watch how they react to my illustrations. Which ones make them smile, which ones do they buy.
A while back, when greeted by the first tulips of spring, I illustrated 3 pink tulips in a pot. I was so happy just to see the first signs of spring.
But for one reason or another, these sad little tulips did not have much
appeal. So it was added to my list of so called do overs.
Now that I look at the first version, maybe it just was not finished. Maybe they just looked too lonely. It will be interesting to watch and see how people will react to the new version this year. One of the biggest payoffs is seeing people light up with a smile as they walk through my tent, and best of all is making one of my pieces of art their own.
Every once in awhile I revisit a design I have done to see if it could be illustrated better. In this case it is The Letter P which I designed years ago. I am glad I did in this case. Here is the new updated version.
I miss my cat. She succumbed to old age after 19 years. I have had many pets; cats, birds, fish, and yes, even turtles. They have added so much joy to my life. This is sort of a tribute to the many pets I have had over the years.
Yes, winter makes me feel a little squirrelly. I want to hibernate.
But alas, it was in my notes from my last show to illustrate another letter S. I know snake seems to be the obvious, by the sly squirrel won. Besides he is picking strawberries and that should bring a smile to one's face.
I am a designer and illustrator with many years of experience designing in the social expression industry. I have always loved designing and experimenting in all kinds of media my whole life.
When not designing my own work, I work with my husband, illustrator and photographer Norman Drake as co owner of YOURPRECIOUSPORTRAITS.COM.
I would enjoy hearing from you.