Website!!!! (Many exclamation points needed...)

So you may be wondering where I've been and why my posts have been so few and far between. Well, dear readers, wonder no longer. Much of my time of late has been spent hunched over the keyboard like a good little code monkey punching in all sorts of things that now make some sort of strange sense - divs and ids and classes and <> - and combing through lines of code in search of missing back slashes and semi colons. I kid you not. One missing semi colon is the difference between working code and a big ole mess of gobbledygook. (Apparently gobbledygook is one word... I did not know that.)

But behold! The gloriousness of a website built from scratch!

I know it looks a bit sparse at the moment. I still want to play with the design of it. I have thoughts and ideas and plans but little time for implementing. I intend to keep updating and fixing things as I go along, but for the time being, it's nice to have a working portfolio site.

Love and all that nonsense

Happy late Valentine's Day dear readers!

Alas alack, this is not a book project related post. My book related posts seem to be piling up and sitting on the back burner - all for good reasons. I have been letting ideas percolate and sketching my little hand off working on my book dummy. And let me tell you, getting all those sketches scanned in is taking a while... much longer than anticipated, as it were. In any case, promises for a book related post this week. For now, though, I have another gouache class post.

Love seemed to be in the air in class last Tuesday. My prof gave us creative assignment this time around - still rendering - but with a dash of storytelling thrown into the mix. For homework, we had to create a four panel love story between two objects or two things. No people. The first panel was to be about "meeting", the second - "getting to know one another", the third - "happy!", and the fourth - "parting". So though it was a love story, it was a rather sad one.

I wracked my brains and did all sorts of sketches (and I do mean a mighty stack-worth of scrap sketches) about love between incongruous items - a pencil and a pencil sharpener, scissors and paper, a puddle and a paper boat, two matches, a bird and a cuckoo clock, among others - until I came up with this:


Getting to Know One Another

Happy in Love



Avocados are Delightful

Happy snow day everyone!

The weather-folks predicted a major snow storm here, of the school-closings-and-snow-days-for-everyone-so-let's-rush-to-the-grocery-store-and-clear-the-shelves-of-milk-and-bread-and-batteries variety. So here I sit at my little table in Park Slope, enjoying the snow on the trees (though admittedly there is a lot less snow than was predicted and likewise less than I would have liked... but SNOW!) and a cup of tea, and I realized that it would be an excellent day for a couple of catch-up posts. There is much to be done today (even though it is a day "off"), so we'll see if I have time for that second post. Perhaps I shall save it for tomorrow, keep you on the edge of your seat, mouth rounded in anticipation - whatever will she post!?

But alas, as usual, I digress...

Though it is snowy and winter outside, indoors it is all kinds of cozy and excellent... made even more so because of the lovely avocado and hummus sandwich waiting for me. If you've never had one, you should make one right now (except if you're snowed in... then wait until tomorrow) - it is a life changing sort of sandwich. Dead of winter doesn't exactly scream avocados; it's more of a time for the warm and hearty rather than the green and tangy. But I was inspired to pick up an avocado at the grocery store yesterday - no, I did not buy milk and bread... just an avocado - because of my gouache class this past week.

My fab Britishish prof assigned us to do small paintings of food. We're playing with using the paint to get fairly accurate renderings. This week, he showed us a technique of using an entirely magenta underpainting to get the shadows to pop. You paint the darkest shadows with the brightest magenta and use a lighter wash over the rest of the piece.


And then, once the underpainting is complete, you paint your other colors. I wish I'd thought to photograph it in process because it was sort of neat looking with just the avocados painted and this screaming magenta everywhere else. Anywho, it was quite fun to paint. I still have some finishing touches to do to complete it - touches within the salad, additional highlights, and of course the background - but overall, I'm pretty happy with it... and my sandwich.

Avocado Salad!


I know what you're thinking... two posts in less than twenty-four hours? After days and weeks of silence? Well, I spent this evening looking for reference for my book project this term (I will be posting about this shortly... I promise I won't keep you waiting much longer. I know you're waiting on the edge of your seat...) and was even looking back at some of my older work and portfolio pieces for style inspiration. As I was doing so, I realized that because I don't yet have a full working website, some of my favorite things have never been posted. So here we are...

This little study - a test illustration that I did for a picture book idea - is one of my absolute favorite pieces -

It's hard to say what it is about this illustration... there are some images that just work. In this particular case, it's how I felt painting it, and how easy and right it was.

I have a bad habit of stressing about finishing a piece rather than enjoying the act of making it: from the first barely-defined thumbnails to final sketches to the finished paintings. Who knows whether I'll decide to bring in elements of this style, but I do hope that while it's tacked above my desk in the studio I'll be able to capture the peace I felt creating it, the swoosh of paint effortlessly washing across the paper, the simple joy of painting.

Indesign: City in a Book

I meant to post this ages ago, but for one reason or another skipped over it in favor of other art or work.

This term, my digital class thus far has been wholly devoted to learning and working with html in order to eventually build our own websites. Useful skill, no? Definitely useful, and while there is an intrinsic logic, it is equally infuriating. Forget a slash mark ( / ) or a semi-colon and your entire page fails. My weekends are often spent banging my head against the keyboard.

Anywho, last semester, as you well know, we did a bunch of work with the Adobe programs, mostly Photoshop and Illustrator, but towards the end of the term, we devoted a single class to InDesign. I actually spent a weekend teaching myself InDesign in order to put Viktor's project together, but it was nice to have a class actually devoted to learning the program.

Our project was to take a sentence from this horribly pretentious book on design, "The Medium is the Massage" (1967) and create a four page book. I really like what I came up with, but it's just a kernel of an idea. I definitely want to come back to this idea and either rework it or use it elsewhere later.

And thus: