A couple of years ago I was contacted by Jewish Toys, a company in Chicago, to do design work for them. Unfortunately at the time I was in the middle of working on Hannah and Dann's wedding and had to turn them away, because I was just too busy. Just recently they contacted me again with a new project. Their timing was perfect this time, and they sent instructions for designing a store display for "Paint Your Own Tzedakah Boxes." Part of the specs were to create illustrations of boxes with samples of art that might be painted on the blank wooden boxes, so I had to look over 3D art effects Help in Illustrator, since it's been a while since of done that type of thing. They decided not to have me paint actual boxes because painting and photographing them would take much longer. The company has been great to work with and they're pleased with the results—I hope to be getting future assignments later this week.
This morning I got pooped on. Really. Pearl got all nervous on the way to the groomer and it was flying poop in the car. So I set her down on the grass (freshly MOWED grass) next to the groomer's to see if she was done, and she started to run away! I ran after her, picked her up and my favorite light tan shorts got smeared in grass clippings and stains. I had other plans but had to come home to get cleaned up. Forget the other plans. I thought about going back to bed. But, I pushed past the humiliation and despair and sat down at my computer. That's a good thing. It would've been real easy to forget it all after what happened. So, instead I cranked out a few more of the bulletin board pieces.
Ok, so they weren't ALL done today. But these are the ones I've finished up since the last post. Seeing them all together like this, I'm realizing I need to do some tweaking on the color for balance. Another good thing.
Then I played around with some gouache while listening to some good music—a little Death Cab and some Iron and Wine—some of Rachel's favorites I think.
Gouache and Micron pens on watercolor paper
I've recently seen quite a bit of this kind of pattern used a lot, especially in gouache. Thought I'd try it myself. It was fun and mindless. Not a bad thing.
Then I painted some lettering—a very favorite Torah quote—from the Torah portion that both girls chanted at their bat mitzvahs.
Gouache on watercolor paper
I did it freehand—no sketching before—just me and a paint brush, some nice chalky, matte gouache on a blank white sheet of paper. Fun. And nice to get past the fear of making mistakes without lots of planning ahead, even for something that doesn't really matter. Do you understand what I mean?
Now I'm going to check the laundry and see if the poop and grass stains came out of my shorts.
Next up: 123Print wedding invitations!
But, I have gotten quite a bit accomplished in honor of National Progress Day (March Forth!). In addition to making and packaging loads of print reproductions, printing, trimming and scoring cards, soldering pendants and doing some 123Print design work, I also designed three new cards for my own line.
I've had lots of requests at shows for sympathy, get well and birthday cards. So, these can now be crossed off the list of to-do items. I may try to find a few minutes to post them on Etsy tomorrow.
Still want to do a boy new baby card and a more masculine birthday card (and I'm sure there are others that just aren't coming to this tired mind). However, looking on the positive side, I did get lots of work done, and if the others don't happen before this weekend's show it's not the end of the world. And, right now it's bedtime! Sleep tight.
That's how I'm spending my day today. I'm getting an order for 200 invitations ready to go out. This is definitely more tiring work than sitting at the computer. But, it is good not staring at a monitor all day long. And it's very satisfying to see the stack of completed, handmade invitations all packaged up and ready to go in the mail.
123Print has been fun to work for—everyone is so nice and appreciative. I've had the opportunity to do something different for me the last several weeks. They send out marketing emails each week on Thursday "featuring" a different artist. I've been designing the last few and this is one that featured me. The words aren't really mine, and I haven't had little kids for a long time, but it's fun to be a part of this. And, I'm really enjoying the design work! I may even start doing a bit of the html work, doing the landing page design. That should help me hone what little skills I have acquired in that area.
The last two weeks have been spent designing business cards, stationery and greeting cards for a new client. It’s enjoyable work and is helping to pay the bills while Boyd finds another job. The company seems great to work for, too-yay! These are a few of the things of done recently.
I also thought I’d post some final pictures of finished paintings.
This is one I’ve had sitting around for quite a while unfinished. I finally got it out and put the finishing touches on it for the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit. It’s one of the few without religious symbolism–something I need to try more often.
The next five are ones I posted earlier while in progress. These are the finished paintings and I’m please with the way they turned out. In fact two have already sold!
Since I’ve spent so much time at the computer the last couple of weeks, transitioning back to the easel seems difficult. It’s hard to pick back up again–thus writing a blog post is a good way to procrastinate. But, I have got to get a couple of new commissioned pieces done. So, as hard as it is to pull myself away from the computer, I know that once I get going I’ll start rolling along. It’s the starting that’s the hard part. Ok, here I go…. 1….2….3….. ok, no more putting it off. Here I go!
Well how about that. With all of the craziness going on I’m making time to post some stuff. Here’s another. This is a painting honoring a Jewish educator to be presented to her and used on invitations for the event. The Hebrew reads “Teach them diligently to your chilldren.”
This painting is done in acrylics on Canson Montval 140 lb cold press watercolor block. I like the look and feel of it.
I hope the client is pleased with this invitation sample! That’ll be one more “To-do” item checked off the list.