Sunday, February 27, 2011

Some sites of interest

For today's post I thought I would share with you a few sites that have been making my sigh with admiration. I don't get much time to read all the blogs and sites I would like of course but I think you might enjoy this small slice of some favorites.

Artist: Laura Perez

Anna Goodson carries some of the best illustrators around and I'm thrilled that the company is Canadian. I'm often drawn to the site to check out the new work of her amazing group of illustrators. Anna will often bring up illustration topics for discussion on her Facebook page which I really value.

Next up is local Vancouver wedding photographer Jamie Delaine who blows my mind with her amazing photography. Jamie's blog and photos come across as so warm, genuine and authentic that it's impossible not to be impressed by her. Jamie's blog is on of the few that I will actually read fully rather than scan the content. Written in a very personal voice it's hard to imagine that this photographer is still in her early twenties.(!)

Artist: Laura George

The final offering is a blog written by fellow illustrator Fee Harding who I "met" through the Pikaland Bootcamp course. I just love Fee's work and because we share a love of illustration, I can't not help but enjoy her Friday Five posts where she features other illustrators who have caught her eye. I love all her picks. A clean and simply presented blog with plenty of great links makes for some great reading. Well done Fee.

I hope you enjoy the sites as much as I do. If you have any sites that you would like to share in the comments, I would love to hear about them.

Friday, February 18, 2011

A creative way to give money as a gift for a child

Last weekend my youngest was invited to a birthday party. This was kind of special because it was the first party she was invited to without her big sister. As part of the information on the invite, we were asked NOT to buy the birthday girl a gift but rather give her a "twoonie" and another "twoonie" towards a charity of her choosing. What? No toy-of-the-minute to wrap? How do you give a twoonie as a gift?

I loved the idea of this birthday girl getting to pick out her own special toy with the money she would get from everyone. I especially loved the idea of this little girl looking forward to donating money to a charity special to her. It's a fantastic gift idea that goes a long way and is appreciated so much more than most gifts.

I still wanted her money gift to be special so we used it to make a little stick puppet. I folded a five dollar bill into an origami shirt and then I added paper accordion legs and arms. I printed off a small photo of my daughter and cut a long neck tab that I used to insert into the shirt collar. Finished off with paper hands and shoes, we secured the collaged body onto a chopstick. My daughter thought she looked hilarious as a bouncy legged puppet.

Now how is that for a fun and personable, inexpensive and meaningful gift?

Friday, February 11, 2011

My monotype process video

Ever since I've done monotype prints I've been confronted by the fact that most people don't know what they are. Although they are a printmaking technique, they are a little different in that only one image can be produced. They are kind of a hybrid between printmaking and painting. I've also found that once people find out that they are prints, they sometimes dismiss them as being of "lesser value" than an original painting.

It's been a bit of a struggle to explain a rarely used technique in an already misunderstood medium. I've asked around on the forums about this and I have gotten some great advice from other sellers. Most suggested that I needed to show my printmaking process more and explain some of the terminology so that the average person could understand it.

Because I'm a visual person, I can appreciate watching  demo. videos. For more than a year I've been wanting to post a video of myself doing a monotype. I finally made one but I had some major hurdles with editing and uploading. So after my Sony handi-cam bit the dust I invested in a Flip video camera which cost a third of what my Sony did. And guess what? I filmed on a Sunday and I edited and uploaded my movie by Monday. The Flip comes with its' own editing software which is just great. If I want to though, I can edit with iMovie or another movie program.

Take a look at my video and feel free to leave comments. At five minutes long I think I will edit the next one to be a bit shorter and.....I can now because I have the technology!
You can view the painting process of my "I think we need to have a chat" here which was done with my digital camera. I set my camera to take a photo every 30 sec. for each session. A not bad solution but it still required a LOT of editing.

Stay tuned for more YouTube videos.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Year of the Rabbit print exchange

This past week was the start of the Chinese New Year which is celebrated by a large proportion of the Canadian population. All over the country festivals and celebrations are held to see in the beginning of the new lunar year, the Year of the Rabbit.

  Just like last year's Year of the Tiger, the PROOF Gallery in Toronto put a call out to printmakers to create imagery around the rabbit. This international print exchange will be on display from Feb. 2-13.

For my bunny submission I chose to create a drypoint on a plastic plate. Once the edition was printed, I hand painted each print with watercolor. I'm happy to say that my little print made it onto the poster for the show this year.

Gung Hai Fat-Choy!