alphabet, fonts, t-shirt design, thoughts behind the work

Working with Quotes WOMEN

I just ran across these lovely star brushes and wanted to practice using them. This inspirational quote is attributed to a few people but most seem to think it came from 1st lady Eleanor Roosevelt. I’m happy with that. It is certainly true.
There are so many quotes to play with, this is only one of many to come. I wanted to put a graphic in here so I did a quick line art of a woman’s face. It was hard to find a place to make her work in the composition. It’s funny how when you begin designing something with the background, the whole piece takes on a “painting” feel. This can be good and bad too because it’s just one more design element to consider. Painting elements take away from graphic elements. It seems like it should be an either or choice to make. That’s why I ended up putting here translucent face on top of text and she ends up being small.
Here’s a thought–if you look at the bottom 2/3rd of this artwork it is a square …and the words have an opposite meaning of what the quote is. It would be “women rarely make history”. Ha. Pretty funny. I think these colors work. check it out on tee public.

Illustrations, t-shirt design, thoughts behind the work

Retro couple romantic dancing and courting

I have redrawn and recolored a vintage comic book page in photoshop. The experiment took a long time and turned out very different than what I had pictured in my head. The line art was drawn in black and I thought I would play and make the shadows with line art as a design element. I colored the illustration using bright colors and brushes that mostly look like air brushes. The bubble texts shapes were done by hand as well. I love the dialog in the bubbles and it is circa 1940’s.
The font is “Hello Pencile” which is an art deco style. I think the most successful part of the drawing is the brilliance of her dress. The characters end up having the same hair color. I love her long yellow gloves and orange bracelet. Compositionally, the eye naturally goes to the bottom of the art where there is so much dark towards the activity of all the lines. This was fun. I have listed it on teepublic.

fantasy illustration, Illustrations, simple photoshop, t-shirt design, thoughts behind the work

Love and hot cocoa t shirt designing

More line art and experimenting with a few coloring details and playing with fonts. I drew this in photoshop and used a quick method of coloring under the line art. This is not the professional way to do it but…I redrew this so many times, I just wanted to finish it. For a comic book the professional way is to make the flats first and then color, and then render.

I know this art is pretty flat and there is no light source and no rendering, but…. I wanted something quick to try out a few shades of separate colors to see how they would stand out on their own on various fabrics. I am happy with the four shades of green and the four shades of blue in the fairy’s wings. They do give the art a little depth. I think the shades could have been a little stronger with each step though. It did load well and you can see a distinction in the colors on all kinds of fabrics. I put a lot of thought into placing a heart above her head to show what she is dreaming about–love. I had one more heart but decided that one was better than two–less is more. The cocoa cup color repeats in her dress. I’m hoping the cup starts to resemble a magic globe that she is dreaming into.

I’ve been studying the art of the tshirt for a while now. Aside from the obvious there is a lot to this medium. I am happy today as I had a lightbulb moment last night, looking at some of my favorite t-shirt artists and making mental notes on their thought processes.

I’m hoping to do this again and to see if I can build up a little speed. Another note is that the text and image can’t have much space between them because when it’s printed as a sticker, the parts should always be connected. I did color animation cells al long time ago and we had similar issues. fun.

Here’s a link to see the product

fantasy illustration, Illustrations, landscapes of imagination, thoughts behind the work

A paper mosaic garden

This is a watercolor that I did when I was in the process of building my house. I was working with real mosaics which I manufactured and installed myself. It was a very difficult process and many times was physically very painful. I did it as an act of love because I wanted to personalize my house and leave a stamp on it for history.

How sweet is that? I hope I will always be so naive as to think I could make any difference in this world. After the storming of the capitol in Washington D.C. yesterday, I was not at all surprised. I fully expect nobody will do anything about it. No answers will come as to why the police opened the gates to the anarchists and let them in. I don’t have much faith is the longevity of U.S. democracy. I don’t like to make political comments because people generally don’t want to hear them and deal with it in their own ways. I get that. The whole world is now confronted with massive injustice in most countries big and small.

Finding myself of my own accord living in another country that I love is a double edged sword. But for me, I had little choice but to do what I had to do considering my worn out circumstances and condition. I will never regret the move. Now that I have been here just shy of three years, and I have done everything in my power to secure my remaining days with what protection I could muster, the question for me now is…..what do I do now with my time?

With little or no power to change who I am and edit my history, I realize that for me one of my main talents has always been drawing and painting. That is something that no one could take away from me. Now above all the times in my life when I need it to hold on to, it has become a resource that gives me great joy.

Someone asked me why I’m doing print on demand. I guess it’s because it’s a forum that I can learn from and it gives me a good reason to go to work every day. It’s also fun to get a little feedback on my journey. I have always been a hard worker and at this stage, I could never change that habit. So here’s a little quote I wrote on my facebook page today which kind of sums it up…

“This is what I do to preserve my sanity. It’s about keeping up with technology and does not have much to do with art except in the simple process of art 101. It’s about learning new things. How can you be aware of what is going on in the world while realizing how few your options are to change it.? You do what you know best and hope sometime it might make a simple change for the better for whoever is willing to receive it. I think that is all any of us can do. For me drawing brings me to a higher place where I can escape and find peace.” I am focusing on silly stuff as well as trying to bring awareness to all the animals of our beautiful planet that are becoming extinct in my lifetime. In my lifetime and I can’t believe I am saying that. That’s hard to realize.

So here’s to positivity and hope for a better world.


Illustrations, Pen and Ink Drawing, people, simple photoshop, thoughts behind the work

Toulouse-Lautrec

Once upon a time in a city or state I was living in that I can’t remember, there was an exhibit of many original drawings of Toulouse-Lautrec. I had always admired his work but really never known much about his life. The exhibit was downstairs in a kind of basement setting. I remember it was very dimly lit down there to prevent light damage to the art. All the works were small and intimate. This was fascinating as most of us know he painted very large paintings and posters, depicting Paris life and the can can as we know it. This was because he was not just a painter but an illustrator and just as importantly, a caricaturist. The exhibit feature many caricatures of the everyday people in his life.

The drawings seemed to jump off the paper and hit me hard. They hit me in my head, in my stomach and I immediately loved him. I stayed for a very long time, reveling in the idea that when you die, you will not be dead. I had just met a truly great man. The idea grew in my head that If you were born to connect with the history of the world, you would leave something behind. Here in front of me was a little miracle of sorts. This tiny man with his mangled body and his ill fate somehow managed to make his whole life a statement. Tragic though it was, he somehow turned this disabilities into something wonderful people could use as an inspiration. It left a mark on history. He left a permanent mark on me. I hope he will never be forgotten .

This little drawing was actually two that I put together. I was just learning photoshop and combined the Paris background with the pen and ink. It was a lot of fun to do. I don’t know why but I ran across it in my files and it brought back memories.

It got me to wondering that if you were born with the stack of cards this man was dealt, would you do as well in history or would you be as forgotten as the tiny spec of sand on an ocean shore? Is the world the same now or is it completely different: more cruel, more hostile? Is there more hate and bigotry or is it more exposed? I think it’s the world is the same but the language of survival is different.