Trends come and go, but birds are sticking around

This week I was digging around in some old files from my job as a textile designer. I was looking for examples of past work to show a client, and let me tell you, there were many a suzani rug designs in those files. A few years ago, suzanis were all the rage in home decor. Some of the other ethnic prints that were also popular then are still going strong, like ikats. But what happened to the suzani? I for one, am aiming to bring it back. I made this folksy group, and threw in a folksy suzani design (under the polka dot). It's a modern, folk, songbird, floral filled collection, and it will be at Surtex with my agent in a few weeks.

A byproduct

Sometimes I get a request for new artwork for a specific need from an existing client. Sometimes my agent mentions something a prospective client has requested to see. Both of those happened in the last two weeks, and now my desktop is full of lots of miscellaneous new work. It seems like a lot of surface designers create a new cohesive line each season, but my work process is a bit all over the place because of these requests. A year and some change after becoming a full time independent designer, this whole existence and process still makes me scratch my head pretty often. Am I doing this the most efficient way? What am I even going to do today? Should I be spending more time creating artwork that only fits a specific look aka "a brand" for myself, or should I just keep creating what people are asking to see and hope it all looks pretty together? I'm still figuring it all out. Today I decided I needed to put together some collections expanding on some of the work I did recently, the work all over my desktop. I just made a collection I liked, in a colorway I liked, not because it was the most sellable or I thought someone in particular would like it. It made me glad to make something I wanted to draw, not a self-imposed food drawing challenge (never again!) or a request. It was a break, and I needed it! Oh, and if you have any work-flow ideas, let me know. I think I need that too.

Food Pattern Challenge: Apples

*I'm challenging myself to draw a food related pattern or illustration every weekday for the next two weeks!

Last Food Challenge post! I love clean texture like this in patterns. My polka dot wallpaper for Hygge & West has two different kinds of cross hatching. The kind of texture I made for this apple pattern is very 50s to me. It automatically gives you lots of color variations too. Did you notice this post was supposed to happen on Friday, my actual last day of the food pattern challenge? I got a few work requests, so everything else had to come to a stand still. Being busy is a very good thing as a freelancer, so I am not complaining. Companies are starting to find me instead of me approaching them, which is really nice. Contracts are being signed, and even though it will take a while for them to come to market, it always feels nice to see some fruit of your labor, no pun intended... I also finally ordered some of my wallpaper, and it came this weekend, so I'll be sharing images of some installed wallpaper soon! 

Food Pattern Challenge: Lemon Lime

*I'm challenging myself to draw a food related pattern or illustration every weekday for the next two weeks!

I'm not going to lie, this food pattern challenge has been kind of difficult. I haven't been thrilled with everything I've posted, actually... I haven't been thrilled with any of it. That being said, I think it is good for me because as a designer it is really good to be out of your comfort zone every once in a while.

I like this lemon and lime pattern though. It is my favorite out of all the food patterns so far.

One more day of this challenge!

Food Pattern Challenge: Pretzels

*I'm challenging myself to draw a food related pattern or illustration every weekday for the next two weeks!

New friend Sarah and I were emailing after our lunch outing the other day and she mentioned that pretzels would make a good pattern. I wrote back immediately, saying something to the effect of, "you are a genius!" Pretzels are a simple but interesting shape, perfect for a pattern, and even more importantly for my purposes, they are a food. :) 




*I'm challenging myself to draw a food related pattern or illustration every weekday for the next two weeks! and thanks Bettina for the photos!

I have another food illustration for you, finally! I had really hoped to post a new one every single day as part of my challenge, but whoa, that is not happening. Friday, some of my girlfriends wanted to help me do some "research" for this little project, so we went out and had a bagel-centric and delicious lunch downtown. I thought I would draw something based on what we ate, and I started to do that, but it just wasn't working. I wasn't happy with any of it. Coming back to the computer over the weekend to start over a few times, I finally decided to try some hand-lettering. I like how some of it turned out, and some of it I'll redo if I send it to my agent for licensing. I also want to try some more color combinations. 


Isn't this quote lovely? I'd never heard it before. It is so very true. Thanks for Friday lunch, friends! It was of more worth than hoarded gold for sure :)

Farmers Market Pattern

*I'm challenging myself to draw a food related pattern or illustration every weekday for the next two weeks!

Todays pattern is a new try with those herbs from yesterday. I think I could add even more detail on the carrots and parsley. The color palette is definfitely out of my comfort zone, and I don't think I've ever drawn a tomato. This challenge is for sure making me stretch a bit. I'm doing some "research" with friends at lunch tomorrow, so stay tuned!

Already cheating

*I'm challenging myself to draw a food related pattern or illustration every weekday for the next two weeks!

Hmm, so I am just now realizing that herbs, though definitely a type of food, are pretty much, as far as my illustrative purposes go, more of a floral. Tomorrow I must draw something that is only a food. It is a little disheartening that I am already subconciously cheating. This is going to be a long two weeks :)

I decided to jump on the chalkboard trend since I've never designed anything with that. I think I may like a solid background more...

Yep, I think that is better. The chalkboard is a little unnecessary and distracting.

Also, in case you were wondering, the herbs are; chamomile, mint, two kinds of parsley, rosemary and lavender. 

Food Challenge

Today I present to you a doughnut pattern! Everyday I will draw some sort of food pattern for the next two weeks. This one has a similar color story as the one below. I hope this little challenge forces some extra creativity out of me. Some days will be better than others, I'm sure.

I really want a doughnut now! I'd go to this amazing place in my neighborhood, but I think it would be smarter to go eat a real lunch instead... probably...


Here is the follow-up to the original silverware sketches. I think I like the faster, looser sketches better, maybe? I go back and forth. I painted on textured Strathmore drawing paper because i could not find my watercolor paper anywhere, and I didn't love the texture. Last week I painted my office and moved a ton of stuff around. Apparently I lost a few things in the shuffle too. It might be best to put this away for a while and take a fresh look in a few days or weeks... or until I find the right paper.