happy new yizzle

Another week of postponing a Golden Books post, but it’s New Years Eve!  New Years has long been my favorite holiday, mostly because it’s the most optimistic holiday.   You can ring in the New Year and have high hopes that the coming year will be better than the last.  I also like champagne.

It’s hard to believe that a decade has past, but I guess when looking back on it, during that time I did finish high school and college.  School years go by much faster than regular years, you know.   I went from living at my parent’s house in Kansas City, Missouri to living in Baltimore!  I went from hating bacon to actually liking it!

2009 was worlds better than 2008, but that wasn’t exactly hard to do.  Sure, there were some crappy times of this year, but the lows weren’t as low.   Three things that I really enjoyed this year:  Seeing Neko Case (in the late summer), traveling to SF (to see Steph!) and driving down to LA, eating a delicious meal and having a nice bottle of wine at the Wine Market.

I really like lists, so I’m always excited to read end-of-the-year lists.  A list I always enjoy is All Songs Considered Listeners Picks.  Currently I am listening to the 2009 list.

I don’t really do resolutions, but one resolution I did make was the get through this stack of books/magazines on my bedside table:

Somewhat of a scattered post, but happy new year blogosphere!


website in progress

For this edition of in-progress Wednesdays, I have relatively little to offer you.  While in Kansas City,  I worked on the website for my collaboration with Stephanie Leung, which we have aptly named God Bless the Tigers.   It’s taken a little longer than I anticipated, so I’ve been working on it after I’ve gotten off work each night.

What started with a simple collaboration (sent through the mail, as Steph is rooted in Oakland, CA) eventually turned into something that we both wanted to get more serious about.  We’ve narrowed our focus to band posters, which we’re busy collaborating on for our body of work.

I really like building websites, so I’ve been working on a site for God Bless the Tigers.  Hopefully it’ll be launched within a week or so.

This is the background I made for the site:

A screen shot of the index page:


papercraft chronicles

As mentioned yesterday, I wrote that I’d be sharing this book today.  Papercraft is a book on the art and design of paper.  The book is a beast – so many beautiful pages to pour over.   In addition to the beautiful artwork that it holds, it’s also nicely designed.

It includes a variety of different cut-paper designs and applications.   The book is a great way  of showing how paper can be pushed from just a surface to draw on, to something more sculptural and tangible.  It’s extremely extensive and even includes a dvd in the back of the book!

I tend to enjoy the type of paper construction that’s a bit more flat (applied to a surface and design oriented) but comes up off that plane to suggest the fact that it is,  infact, somewhat 3D.  There is plenty of that in this book, in addition to things that are tangible item to hold – replicas of objects done in paper.  Papercraft also shows the conceptual side of the medium too, including gallery work.

In one of my illustration classes, Cornel Rubino told us that you’re only as good as your library.  I’m glad to have this book in my arsenal.

Here are some artists that I enjoyed out of the book.

Carlos Giovani Estudio:

Dan McPharlin:

Jean Jullien:

Jen Stark: (Fun fact – she went to my school.  I remember seeing this show in the student gallery)

Julien Vallee:

Michael Velliquette:  (My favorite in the book!)


over my holiday weekend

Hopefully everyone had a nice Christmas (if that’s your thing), and holiday weekend!  It’s always nice to have a three-day weekend, no?

This past weekend I was flying to Kansas City, which had a terrible snow storm.  The snow started on the day of my travel.  I flew from Baltimore to Chicago, then was supposed to have a lay-over in Chicago and fly to KC from there.  By the time I made it to Chicago, however, my flight to KC was CANCELED due to bad weather.  Groggy and frustrated, I flew BACK to Baltimore that same night and then the next morning proceeded to fly back to Kansas City from Baltimore.  This time it actually happened!

One of the things I received this Christmas was a new digital camera.  It’s a Sony Cybershot with a wide-angle lens and a whole mess of other manual settings for me to play around with.

Some things the weekend included:

Hanging out with my parent’s dogs, Maddie and Lola.

Trapesing around in snow.  SO MUCH SNOW.  It effectivly ruined many my plans.

I am also excited about this book.  I need to look through it carefully.  I’ll write more about this tomorrow.

It was nice to land in Baltimore last night and see NO SNOW on the ground.   Snow and I are done professionally.


in-n-out

Just a quick post… I am soon to be headed home to Kansas City, MO for Christmas.  I’ll be back on Monday.

No Golden Book post today, but look for it next week!  In the meantime… happy holidays!


in progress… small collages

As mentioned earlier, my Wacom tablet pen is BROKE, and I need a replacement.  To augment the fact I can’t work on the computer, I’ve been doing these little collages in my sketchbook.  Recently,  I was the winner of a Vogue magazine from 2008 (which has amazing colors and patterns in it), so I’ve been playing around a little bit with pattern, color, and shapes.

This one is not finished:

Nothing too serious, but I do seriously like making these little collages.  I’m now in the process of figuring out how I can work this type of work into what I’m currently doing for serious.

Also, if you follow me on Twitter, you’d probably see that I made a ton of Christmas cookies last night.  I forgot to take an adequate photo.


my favorite albums 2009

The end of the year is creeping up on us all, so I thought that I’d take a little time and share my ten favorite albums of 2009.  I think that this year was a particularly good year for me with music – Neko Case had a new album out and I found some new bands that I really fell in love with. (These aren’t really in any particular order, although Neko Case’s album was my favorite of this year).

1. Neko Case – Middle Cyclone – Neko Case has long been a favorite of mine, and this was the first album she had released since I had started listening to her.  The buzz around it was exciting to follow and listen to her interviews while making the album.  Although probably not my favorite album of hers writing wise, it is definitely the most interesting for me to listen to.  Favorite track: Middle Cyclone

2. The Dodos – Time to Die – The Dodos were a band introduced to me through my ex-boyfriend.  Once I started raving about them, it turns out that some of my friends already knew about them – including my friend who went to school with one of the musicians in the band!  Steph and I did a band poster for the Dodos (which I have neglected to post).  Favorite track: Fables

3. Bowerbirds – Upper Air – Also a new band, but one that I have quickly fallen in love with.  I really enjoy their whole package – sweet lyrics with a certain amount of quiet and introspect to them.  Favorite track: Northern Lights

4. Wilco – Wilco (the album) – Before this album, I had never really listened to Wilco.  I had heard so many great things about them, but never gave it a listen.  I finally got around to listening to this album and don’t regret it.  Favorite track: You and I

5. Animal Collective – Merriweather Post Pavilion – The art school kid in me (and the Baltimorean) started listening to Animal Collective a couple of years ago.  This album was a real refinement to what they had been doing previously, which I think turned some listeners off (like their tendency to scream).  Favorite track: Summertime Clothes

6. Passion Pit – Manners – I avoided Passion Pit for a long time this year, even though I liked every single that I heard.   After finally getting the album, I wondered what took me so long!  This album is the perfect album for a party.  Sleepyhead is one of my jams of the year.  What a fun album.  Favorite track: Sleepyhead

7. Lady Gaga – Fame Monster – If you’ve read this blog from the beginning, you know I’m not shy about my love for Lady Gaga.  I think she is so interesting and such a well-informed pop artist.  This album is another feel-good album for me.  Favorite track: Telephone (feat. Beyonce)

8. Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix – Another band I sort of avoided for quite some time.  My roommate and other friends were really into them, but somehow I just didn’t see it.  It took a few singles to get me listening to the entire album but eventually it found its place with me.  Favorite track: Rome

9. St. Vincent – Actor – Also known as Annie Clark, I instantly fell in love with her beautiful voice and experimentation on this album.  It’s no surprise that I became fond of her – she’s worked with Sufjan Stevens.  Favorite track: Actor Out of Work

10. Dirty Projectors – Bitte Orca – I saw the Dirty Projectors this fall in concert, which was a lot of fun.  I love the use of the voice as an instrument, and how it’s projected on this album.  Favorite track: Stillness is the Move

What am I missing?  Is there something I should have listened to?


over the snowy weekend

Over the weekend…

I am working on making graphics for all the different themed-days that I post on.  UNFORTUNATELY, my Wacom tablet pen broke (for reasons unbeknown to me), so I really can’t do any work on the computer until I have a replacement.  I looked up the price of a Wacom pen.  $60!!! WAHH!!!!!!

Friday/Saturday was the big snowstorm that all the news was talking about.  It started around 10:30PM Friday night, and when I wanted to leave my apartment at 10:30AM on Saturday, my car looked like this:

Final snow count was around 21 inches.  On Sunday I tried to get my car out, but the snow plow had blocked it in.  Luckily, with the help of some strangers, I was able to free my poor car.

Now, for some work… This piece is my collaboration with Stephanie Leung – the first phase.  Another band poster – for the Bowerbirds.  If you haven’t listened to them, you should!  They have one of my favorite albums out this year.

Our collaborative efforts are called God Bless the Tigers… we’ll have a website soon and have a better and newer version of our blog.  Look for it soon!


artist fridays: kelly lynn jones

Kelly Lynn Jones

It’s Friday and everyone knows what that means!  Today I’m posting the work of Kelly Lynn Jones.  I first became acquainted with her work through my involvement with Little Paper Planes, an online store that she helps run.

I’m really loving her collage work! The way they are put together is extremely thoughtful and harmonious – she does a very nice job of using different types of paper, colors and techniques and having them be cohesive.

I’m just posting her collage work on paper, but she has paintings and works on wood, in addition to a few different projects.  Each piece shows the same careful consideration and detail paid to things that otherwise might be overlooked.

all images via Kelly Lynn Jones


golden thursdays with mary blair

So on Tuesdays and Thursdays, whatever I post here is a wild card for me.  Frankly, it can be mildly stressful to rack my brain and peruse the web to figure out what I would like the blogosphere to see today.  You see, I am a flawed human being that is easily distracted by things like Facebook, Twitter, my cell phone, and Google Reader.   I am also someone who loves a plan.  Sometimes, its nice to know what to expect!

Enough of my rambling.  What I’m trying to say is that for the next four Thursdays, I’ll be posting about Golden Books. Golden Thursdays?  Not contemporary Golden Books, mind you.  Vintage ones – books from the 40′s, 50′s and 60′s.  I have long been interested in them and love the style of illustration.  I have a illustrated a few children’s books so I find them inspirational.

If you aren’t familiar with Golden Books, here’s a little bit of background:  Golden Books were first introduced in 1942 and originally sold for 25 cents.  Simon and Schuster was the original publisher of these books, which have (and have maintained) a distinctive appearance throughout the years (namely, the golden spine).

I thought I’d start it off with Mary Blair, who is my favorite Golden Book Illustrator (and one of my all-time fav illustrators).  She had a book called Little Book of Verses, which was an over-sized Golden Book from the 1960′s.  Here are some images – What I really enjoy here are the shapes – so simplistic but so very well designed.  Her technique of dry-brushing with patterning is also something to take note.  The patterning was done before computers.  I’ve seen her work in person, and it’s not particularly large.  I am envious of anyone that can work that small to create something so consistent.

( ^ this is a tattoo on my right shoulder!)

these are via the Animation Archive


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