Ideas!

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Life for the artist is a continual collection of ideas.  Those ideas generate new work. It’s a fun process.

Ideas come from so many sources.  Books, movies, fabrics, nature, magazines, paintings, dreams and more. Sometimes they simply drop out of the sky into my thoughts.  I love good ideas.  They are scrumptious morsels to feast on.  I have some waiting for me now.

 

 

Happy Toosday!

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And why am I happy?  The “flu” flew by in record time.  One day in bed is enough for this happy camper. It’s back to the studio!

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Over the weekend I attended the Picture Book Summit in the privacy of my studio!  I joined more than 300 other authors and illustrators. What fun!  We listened to advice from all the experts from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm!  Barely enough time for lunch and potty breaks but well worth the time. There is already talk of another one next year.  If you are an author or illustrator I highly recommend it!

ONWARD to new adventures!

 

The Art Licensing Show Ribbon Cutting!

ribboncut Oh What fun!!!  The Art Licensing Show website is up and running today!!   You may ask, what is it?  Here is the explanation by founder Cherish Flieder.

ArtLicensingShow.com is a permission based, virtual portal where artwork can be reviewed privately by Art Directors who are looking to commercially license artwork. Authorized Art Directors may request to see art from a wide assortment of participating Artists and Licensors and highlight favorite art pieces, all with a single login.

It is an online directory where art licensing companies and professionals in supporting roles can be be listed and found with a simple search by name, keywords, subject and genre.

Lastly, it’s a a social gathering where industry professionals can network and connect with one another in groups, site updates, and via direct messaging to advance their goals.

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All of us on the site have been working hard to get our art up and loaded.  Today is our big day!

Am I finished?  Is an artist ever really finished?  There are always more things to do!  More drawing, more coloring,

more ideas, more more more!

A Warm Heart

What warms your heart on a cold day?  What warms your heart when the tides of change come crashing in?  What warms your heart when the” no’s” become overwhelming? What warms your heart when the crowd scatters and you are “Home Alone”?

I have a whole list of favorite things I like to look at periodically.  These are things that Warm My Heart.   I found myself smiling and even laughing. They are things I feel that God has blessed me with.  When I look at them I see stories! I see people, I see events…  and more.  Life is so much more than what we see during our day.  Life is a tapestry of stories that intertwine and make memories for us.  Some are so real we can almost re-live them just recalling them to our memories.

Favorite Things

  1. God my Father, Jesus my elder brother, the Holy Spirit my helper.
  2. All my Family
  3. Friends / art friends
  4. People
  5. Rosie and Violet
  6. Coffee with cream
  7. Purses
  8. Odd things for the house
  9. Floor Pillows
  10. Blankies
  11. Coffee Shops
  12. Art galleries
  13. Hankies
  14. Sketch books
  15. Lists
  16. Personal chef
  17. Trip to Maine and beyond
  18. Jeep
  19. Toys
  20. Children’s books
  21. Goat yogurt and blueberries
  22. Zinnias
  23. Colors : purply blue, raspberry, Yaya green
  24. Good movies with popcorn
  25. Breakfast in bed with a good magazine.
  26. grandsons!
  27. my SONS.
  28. a zillion best friends!
  29. colors
  30. the valley between Kenosha and BaileY
  31. the mountains
  32. a crackling fire in the stove
  33. falling snow
  34. deep snow and 4wheel drive
  35. My cozy studio
  36. a good book
  37. a comfy chair
  38. writing a story
  39. a bike ride . . …… and today…. Matthew!

Today’s Warm Fuzzy came from a friend.  She took this wonderful picture of her son sleeping with my Peepsqueak plush.  He is so cute!  Matthew is on my list!

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What are your favorite things?  I am sure mine will grow!!

Designing With Color! Moving Past Boring

3x11paletteThere is so much involved in designing.  One must be up on the trends for color and pattern and more. I always have my eyes open to finding things I love to look at!

Here are the Pantone color trends for 2013.

http://www.pantone.com/pages/fcr.aspx?pg=21005&ca=4

I had to take a close look at them. . . some of them bore me unless they are paired with an “eye-catching” color.  Color is so amazing!  It can make your day!  It can bring a smile to your face, and warm your heart.  It can also bring you down. Why else do people get depressed when they experience too many gray rainy days?  All that because of color? Yes!  Think of the feeling you get when you take a walk and come upon a beautiful scene.  Do you ever “OOOOoooh and Aaaaaahhhh?”  Do colors grab you?

Colors can calm the soul.  One of my favorite movies is Miss Potter.  I like her spunk, I LOVE that she talks to her cartoons,  and I also love the scenes of her beautiful English countryside.  The colors speak peace and tranquility.

One might want calm and peaceful and serene colors for the baby nursery.  So why did I decorate my first child’s nursery in bright sunshine yellow with brown and Kelly Green accents?  ha!  Because I crave bold colors!  All I could think of was that my baby would wake up and want to be inspired by what she saw.  The room had to be warm and happy and that it was!!

As the room progressed to fit two more daughters into it, we moved to pinks and browns. I loved it, but the girls were not really drawn to it.  Interesting.

In my house, you will find that colors change often.  If I could, I would paint my house every year!  My husband jokes about our bathroom being smaller because of the many times I have painted it!  I am thinking of a new color as I type!!!  I am leaning towards a beautiful blue with just the right amount of purple in it!  Baby blue is okay, but I always want something with a little PUNCH in it! I like to walk into a room and hear my heart sing! La la!  Wall colors can be muted but if that is the case, in my house, the paintings must sing!  Oh how I love a noisy house filled with color.

So what am I to do?  Follow the trends?  Or start my own trends?  Am I brave?  These are the questions every designer must face.  I always lean towards being a renegade trend setter!  ha!

One Step at a Time!

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Have you ever started a new chapter in your life?  Have you ever dared to do something you never did before?  Did you feel launched into it and found yourself in free fall? You are not alone. It happens all the time! Anyone who wants to do something worthwhile in life has to take risks and sometimes those risks lead to even more risks!

When my art career began, I was imagining all the possibilities. I dreamed of success. I created many fun little cartoons and talked about what I wanted to do with them.  Then one day, I ran into a friend who was DOING what I wanted to do.  She shook me!  She said, “Les, you have to go to the N.Y. Stationary Show and you have to go NOW!

I had heard of this show. I had many of my friends online talking about going.  This was back in the late 90’s.  There was something in her voice.  It was more like a command from heaven than a gentle nudging from a friend.  I made up my mind to go!

This was huge for me.  I had only been on an airplane once for a 45 minute flight. I practically sat on the lap of the man sitting next to me… asking him what this bump was and what THAT  bump was!    I decided I better pray about this trip.  I told the Lord that if HE wanted me to do this then he would have to make the way for me.   A few days later someone had put an envelope in my mailbox. It was  $300.00.  Enough for my flight!  It was not long until I was flying across America to New York City.  I met up with my girlfriend and stayed with her uncle and aunt. We took buses, rode trains and cabs.  Once at the show we had to pedal our portfolios. I am NOT a sales person. … but there I was asking people where their art director was and if I might have a minute with them.  Over and over.  Hmmm…. it became a little easier each time.

One last company sat down with me.  They looked through my whole portfolio and asked if I had anything more?  I pulled out one last picture of a little baby.  That was it!  That was the one the art director liked.  She asked me if I had any more and I told her I would email them to her when I got home. You better believe I was sketching babies on the airplane!

This was one of my first “be brave” moments. Over and over the good Lord has taken my by the hand and shown me what to do next.  Some would say, “you are weak if you need help for everything.”  But I say,  I am smart for asking.

I have a few more adventures I am yearning for.  There will come that day, when the dreaming is over, and the bags all packed and ready to GO!

What are you waiting for?  Be Brave!!!!!

Fresh Air!

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It is a great joy to be an artist!  I rarely get tired of creating new things. When I am not creating, I am busy thinking about creating.

Occasionally I get stuck.  A design might not be working, a color might be off, a story might need more tweaking etc.  This is when its time to take a break!

Saturday was just such a day. The blue skies of Colorado were mesmerizing. The crisp clean air and the white, bright snow were a refreshing sight!  My husband and I walked along this lake soaking it all in.

Sure enough,  upon returning to my work, I could see what I could NOT see before, a new perspective!  So if you get stuck,  take a break!!  Get some fresh air!  Your work will be waiting for you only this time you might just find the solution you were looking for.