09 May 2015

EdiM #9: Reading Log

I keep saying I've done the last illustration for Teen Summer Reading, and then I realize there's just one more… I started getting my teen volunteers mobilized to label and stuff the "swag bags" we give away when we register the teens, and realized that the one thing I forgot to design and print to go in them is the Reading Log.

This is the little booklet in which the teens write down all the books they read over the summer; they get one ticket per item read, the tickets go into a jar at the Reference Desk, and once a week we have a drawing for $5 gift cards to Jamba Juice or Starbucks or In-n-Out for three lucky winners at each branch. It's a popular incentive!

The reading log should, of course, have a graphic on the front that relates to its purpose, which meant I had to do one more drawing. So I got a list of the top 20 teen fiction books at BPL this month, picked out a few with colorful covers, piled them up, and drew and painted them.

Instead of just picking for popularity, I should have thought ahead to the drawing and painting process, because I picked some covers that were hard to duplicate! Some came out well, and some not so much (there is a lot of Photoshop Elements retouching of little skinny letters here!), but I'm going with it, because I need that reading log to be printed and done!

I'm going to call this my EdiM #9, "something with an interesting label." A book cover isn't precisely a label, but I think doing portions of five of them should count for something!

08 May 2015

EDiM #7

An envelope. An envelope? Yawn. This one left me creatively stumped. People ended up doing some nice things, after I had found my solution, that I wish I had thought of--like the envelope from a sewing pattern for a stuffed bear, or a seed packet for flowers. But most people seemed as blasé as I was with this assignment. Anyway, here's mine:

06 May 2015

EDiM #6

Today's prompt was "something with bristles." I wish these prompts were more interesting--I have to work too hard at coming up with the unexpected. Paintbrush, obviously, or toothbrush, or scrub brush--some kind of brush. Some people did hedgehogs or pigs, some chose bristly mustaches, one woman did her own hairy legs (!). Since this is a flower, and fairly soft, I don't suppose it strictly counts as bristles, but it LOOKS bristly. So I'm going with it.

Jennifer Lawson inspired me to try some spatter. I think something that was not red might have read better--this looks like Dexter did it.

05 May 2015

Cinco de Mayo!

So of course EDiM #5 was "something hot" for Cinco de Mayo…although it could just as easily have been something cool (as in margaritas!). Many picked chili peppers, quite a few went for hot tea or coffee, there were some irons, and stoves, and matches and candles…and one clever person who drew a picture of our favorite Scotsman, Jamie Fraser! (Something hot indeed!) Since I had thought of a portrait of Jamie as well, I now had to think of something else, and a rolling hot flash inspired me. So here it is--my something hot. Whew!

May 4

EDiM #4 was supposed to be bottles of herbs or spices. Since I grow my herbs (for the most part) and use them fresh, I thought painting botanical items was cheating, so…spices. Wonky lids that aren't sitting on the same plane as their bottles or each other, but…I had fun with the product labeling, as usual.

CAN you smell the pie?

03 May 2015

Every day in May!

I decided to take the challenge to draw every day in May this year. Some people on Facebook publish a list of subjects, one per day for 31 days, and then everyone draws his or her version and posts it. I joined the Facebook page, and then hastily took it back (unjoined? disjoined?) when I immediately received thousands of images in my feed, despite unsubscribing to "notifications" (what's up with that?), so I'm just going to go there every once in a while and take a peek while only sharing my own drawings here and on my own FB page. I went to Continental Art Supply and bought a brand-new 9x9-inch sketchbook for the purpose, and...

Here are May 1-3:

I'm actually a fan of dark chocolate these days and only resort to Hershey's in desperation mode, but I liked the idea of drawing the crinkly, light-touched packaging.

This tree grows about five houses down on the other side of the street from me. The whole street used to be lined with Ash trees, but most have died from old age and drought; but this one tree is a Shamel Ash, about twice the height of the others. We think it got planted by mistake, because it definitely shouldn't be a street tree--it has popped up the sidewalk, the curb, and part of the street with its root system! But I hope they never take it out--I like to think of it as the "World Tree."I drew the houses in to try to give a frame of reference for just how big it is, but actually I still didn't get the scale right--it's a LOT bigger. Long live the tree!

Today's assignment was "curtains," and since I only have blinds in my house (except for a shower curtain, and I didn't want to draw that), I couldn't think of what to draw. Then I thought back to childhood and the house I lived in from age 4 to age 13. My dad remodeled it, turning the attached garage into a huge family room, and what used to be the den, with half-paneling in dark wood, became a beautifully light and airy dining room. Mom painted the paneling white, and papered the upper half in a Delft-blue wallpaper called "Portia." Then she curtained the four identical windows in Priscilla ruffled curtains of white muslin, and displayed all her blue and white dishes on the hutch and sideboard. None of this is remotely my style, and yet I look back on that room with positive nostalgia, so I reproduced it here as best I could. Trying to mimic the wallpaper pattern gave me new respect for designers of patterned things like fabrics and wallpapers--what a task! This was a fun one.

Today, instead of doing what I usually do on Sundays, which is laze around reading until about 4 p.m. when I suddenly get the irresistible urge to paint something and try hard to finish before it gets dark, I decided to jump right in. I did this drawing and painting as soon as I got out of bed (and fed the cats--they wait for nothing!), then had my breakfast and coffee, and now I'm feeling energized and ready to accomplish more! A sink full of dishes awaits…and maybe around 4:00 I will paint something else, who knows? I think starting the day with art is a good move.

Stay tuned for more May!