Monday, April 21, 2014

Make Art That Sells - Week 2 & 3

I'm more than halfway through the "Make Art That Sells" (Part A) e-course with Lilla Rogers, and I've got to say... the thought of it ending is making me blue!  I'm already looking to sign up for Part B next year!  It's proven to be an incredible class.  I'm so impressed by the talent and support of the community as well as Lilla's kind insight.  Week 2 and 3 covered the Home Decor Industry and illustrating for Children's Books.  
In week 2, I discovered that I really love designing for Home Decor.  It's definitely something I've always wanted to try my hand at, and now getting a taste of it with our assignment, I can't stop obsessing over the possibilities!  Home Decor encompasses ALL the decorative objects for one's home, both functional and non-functional!  Curtains, plate sets, bedding, the list goes on and on.  Our assignment was to create a set of ceramic plates with succulents as the main imagery.  I've always had a thing for quirky vintage ceramic planters.  I even keep a few on my desk to hold my essential crafting tools.  I imagined a fun selection of succulent planters and created pen and ink drawings of them to decorate the plates.  I spent way more time on this project than I had anticipated, but as Lilla reminds us each week, "People buy your joy."  It couldn't have been more true in this case.  My finished piece was even chosen by Lilla to review for the class critique.  She said it was quirky and engaging with great colors and phenomenal art.  Perfect for the Land of Nod customer.  I was so tickled by the sweet things she said!  Very much a piece I am proud to put into my portfolio. 
Week 3 covered Children's Books.  Though I initially thought this was an area I would enjoy and do well in, I finished the project feeling a bit iffy about it.  I'm not so sure  that my art is suited for this industry.  I like my characters and icons just fine, but I don't feel they are as strong when fashioned into story book art.  The assignment was to create a cover for the Aesop's fable "The Fox and The Crow."  I'm a huge fan of the BabyLit line of board books, so I envisioned it as a project for a company like theirs.  I mixed a limited color palette of flat graphics with felt leaves 'stitched' to the cover.  The style of art that can be used for this industry is almost a little too open ended that it overwhelms me.  I think this is a good thing to know about myself and how I work.  Through this course, I am discovering new things about my art every week!
I Hope everyone had a wonderful Easter (if you celebrate it) or at least enjoyed the gorgeous spring weather, like we were experiencing in Cleveland (if you don't!!)!  

Friday, April 11, 2014

Little Weasel

I've been working hard between the Make Art That Sells e-course, stocking up Horrible Adorables for upcoming shows (see full list of dates to the left), and putting in time on a big freelance project.  Because of all these things, I haven't had the opportunity to devote much energy to blog posts.  So, here are a couple of 'aww' inducing photos of a vintage taxidermy piece from And The Big Bad Wolf that just arrived in the mail!  When I'm stressed out from work overload, it helps to take a break and surround myself with cute things.  I pet my cat Bobbin, watch online videos of baby sloths, and now have this guy's silly mug to look at!  Hope he can help you too!  Your welcome.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Make Art That Sells - Week 1

Most of you only know me for the creature work I do for my 'Horrible Adorables' line.  What you may not know (though I post on and off about it) is that I also have a love for surface design.  I've been working as a freelancer for various toy and textile companies for the past five years.  Sometimes I make soft toy prototypes, sometimes repeat patterns that get molded into hard plastic... it really varies!  Something I would love to do is get more involved in the various design fields and license my art.  Maybe a line of Jordan Elise textiles are in my future???  
I was thrilled to find out about art agent extraordinaire, Lilla Rogers', online class "Make Art That Sells," and promptly signed up!  I've only been through my first week of the intensive five week course, but I'm already loving it!  Everyone is extremely encouraging and kind.  The environment sort of reminds me of my days as a fiber student, sitting around a table of ladies on major day, drinking chai tea and talking about feminism and how we can make the world a better place.  Yes, we were the free-spirited hippie types of our school ;)  
The first week was all about bolt fabric; something that comes a little more naturally to me.  Our subject of vintage kitchen ware with exotic fruits challenged me to move away from my normal cutesy critter designs (though as you can see in my name logo, I had to insert at least one silly beast).  I'm excited to learn more about how to immerse myself into the different industries, step outside of my comfort zone, and better understand my art style (something I struggle with from time to time).  FIngers crossed that this class can prepare me for exciting opportunities in the not so distant future!

Saturday, March 29, 2014


Cleveland, OH - 2008??                                                 Chicago, IL - 2013

New York, NY - 2013

Los Angeles, CA - 2012                                                   Las Vegas, NV - 2009

Beacon, NY - 2014 (got this guy signed by Ron English at an opening)

Philadelphia, PA - 2013

Baltimore, MD - 2013                                                Milwaukee, WI - 2013

I love designer toys, but my personal collection is pretty modest.  It consists of mostly small blind boxed figures.  With blind boxed toys, you take a chance of what you are getting... and usually don't end up with the one that you really wanted.  I love choosing just the right box out of the row of identical packages, gently squeezing the sides trying to predict what's inside, and pulling open the crinkly silver wrapper.  I love the surprise!  Even though most of them don't end up being what would be my first choice (or second), each one is special to me because I buy them as souvenirs!  A couple years ago I started buying one in each new city that I visited when I would come across a toy store.  When I look at my collection, I see all the places I've been!  I started purchasing them very sporadically at first (one here, one there), and regret not starting the souvenir hunt sooner... because I would have so many more items in my collection!  Oh well, I guess I had to start somewhere!  I have a bunch of trips planned this year.. some cities I've already been to, but a couple new places too.  I'm excited to add a few more silly toys to my group!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Darling Duds - St. Paddy's Day

Top of the morning to you!  The weather today turned out to be even nicer that I expected.. must be the luck of the Irish!  Even if you are just a Slovenian gal, like me, and don't have an ounce of Irish in your blood, it's still fun to celebrate the day in festive style!  I have a love of dressing in themed outfits, so I take full advantage of holidays like these (and lucky for me, my favorite color is also green ;).  The blue in my hair has faded to green on the ends.  It timed out well for the holiday, but I'm feeling that I need a change soon.  Whether you are celebrating by searching out the best boxty in the city, drinking yourself silly, or simply adding a bit of green to your wardrobe, I wish you a Happy St. Patrick's Day!

shorts: Anthropologie / shirt: Anthropologie / sweater: Anthropologie / tights: Pure and Good / shoes: Urban Outfitters / necklace: The Littlest Bean / lucky charm: vintage

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Itsy Insects and Mini Sweasels

We at Horrible Adorables have been working on some very special mini mount designs!  Mini mounts are affordable and adorable pieces of art that come on a 5"x3.5" wooden plaque.  This season we are adding not one, but TWO new critters to our mini line!  The first are Mini Sweasels, which have a foxy look with their lemon shaped heads.  These cuties are a shrunken version of one of our most popular designs.  Our second mini to make it's debut are Itsy Insects.  The little buggers have wide staring eyes and can be made with fluffy moth antennae.. or not!  As with all of our other mini mounts, these creatures are completely customizable!  YOU choose the colors and style! 

Custom Mini Sweasel and Itsy Insect listings will be posted in our Etsy shop on MARCH 20th, the first official day of spring!  They will also be traveling with us as we hit the road and start craft fair season.  Dates and locations coming soon!!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Darling Duds - Cat Dress

I purchased this dress a few weeks back when I was visiting Beacon for the Clutter group show.  My friend Sarah-Maria of the incredibly fun clothing line, Meerwiibli, opened a shop called The Tailored Mermaid right on Beacon's Main Street about a year ago. It is home to her line, as well as a curated selection of other local clothing designers (and a Horrible Adorables mount too!).  
This is my second Meerwiibli dress.  Both of them are top contenders for being my favorite article of clothing!  The designs are so special to wear, because you can just tell that so much thought went into every stitch.  There are special elements that are unique to each piece too.  I simply adore the geometric neckline of this dress, the swoop of the hemline and the ribbons that run down the back!  Not to mention, it has a Tammis Keefe illustrated cat print... big bonus points in my book!

dress: Meerwiibli /tights: HUE /boots: Urban Outfitters