Friday, March 28, 2014

Adobe Ideas Overview

I have been obsessed with Adobe Ideas on iPad. It is a simple vector based sketchbook app. Because it's a vector app you can enlarge or shrink your art to any size without losing quality. Here is a quick overview of the art section of the app.

(the move tool is under the hand tool)

Your color themes in Adobe Kuler will upload into Adobe Ideas through Creative Cloud.

What I usually do is take a picture of my art from my sketchbook, put it on the photo layer and then trace over it. You can adjust the opacity of the individual layers so I tend to make the photo layer lighter. Then I start creating shapes. As long as the shape is closed I can fill it with color.

You can have up to 10 layers and upload the drawing through Creative Cloud into Illustrator; layers and all. You can edit and tweak your creation in Ai. I have discovered some annoyances though. If you have a transparent layer you can't make it opaque and lines are a pain adjust. I'm still learning Ai but I believe the the lines you make with Ideas behave like the Blob Brush in Ai. There are lots of anchor points on the line so manipulating them is difficult. The eraser tool works pretty well on the lines though.

I will figure this out as I usually have my iPad in hand so sketching on the iPad can be really helpful with my workflow. Making icons on the iPad is fun and I'm getting better with my Bamboo Stylus for iPad. I will likely never master using my finger to draw. I also have a Sensu paintbrush which is made for painting on a tablet. That's fun to use too.

Here are some other things I've created.


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Monday, March 24, 2014

Make Art That Sells Bootcamp March Project

For my birthday I asked for MATS Bootcamp. This is a six month course of professional licensing assignments from Lilla Rogers. It's a great way to build my portfolio and challenge myself. Our March assignment was Jello molds. For some reason I immediately thought of a turtle with a Jello shaped shell. I don't know why but that's what I wanted to do. I also decided I was going to do it all in Adobe Illustrator. I researched and did sketches on my iPad with Adobe Ideas. I came up with this guy.
Then I created these other icons with my iPad and in Illustrator. I admit editing lines made in Adobe Ideas is a total pain. Editing big blobs of color is easier. So, I deleted my line work from Adobe Ideas and did them over in Illustrator. I have a basic Wacom Tablet and it was much easier to use since I've been playing on my IPad.
Lilla Rogers suggested a pastel palette which is totally opposit of what I normally do. I decided to stretch myself and give it a go. I created a pattern and used Illustrator's new Pattern Maker to create a repeat. This was my final submission.
I already have ideas for coordinates. I'm not sure if I'll keep this color palette. I really like the cute turtle I did on my iPad. He's so bright and colorful. Playing around in Illustrator was more fun than I thought it would be. I created layers to help create depth, which is similar to how I paint. Work on the computer can look very flat so the layers helped a lot. I'm sure the more I play around the more I will figure out. Bootcampers are off for the month of April. Make Art That Sells parts A & B are running again. I highly recommend the courses if you are serious about making a living with your art.

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Friday, March 14, 2014

A New Painting and a Sale!

I've been taking Mindy Lacefied's 6 month course, Wild Surrender. February Mindy did a lovely textural sailboat painting and her lesson inspired this painting.

This is my first painting to feature a boy (my son was thrilled!). I had so much fun painting this one. My love of the ocean, the book "Where the Wild Things Are" and the painted papers of Eric Carle influenced this piece.

In other news, my birthday is March 15th! To celebrate I am having a 10% off sale in my Etsy shop. A print of the above painting is available along with some other new art. Just use the code HAPPY45BDAY at checkout. Sale ends midnight on Sunday the 16th.

Thanks for stopping by!


Thursday, March 6, 2014

Let the Countdown Begin!


This is how many days I have until I can work at my art full time. Both my kids will be getting on the bus around 8:15 and getting home around 4:30. If I work about 9:00-4:00 five days a week that's 35 hours a week to create and work at my business. I decided to start a countdown to give me a goal; A focus.

Things have been a bit crazy the past couple of weeks. We've had snow and ice with school closings. I had lots of little things to get done before I went into the hospital for surgery. Then I've been recovering from surgery. Things are finally leveling out and getting back to normal. While I was recovering I spent time thinking about my art and my frustrations. I get really annoyed at not having time. I'm talking 4 or 5 hours in a row of uninterrupted time. It just doesn't happen often. So, what can I do about it? How can I get what I want? I think I need to let go of the desire of having hours of uninterrupted time and just steal minutes where I can. Focusing on "time" has become a roadblock so I'm changing my thinking.

I'm taking "Year of the Fairy Tale" from Carla Sonheim and this month's assignment has been about "quantity" over "quality". We have to make lots of quick sketches and paintings instead of intensely working on a few paintings/sketches. I love this concept. It puts all the focus on the process of making art instead of the final product. So, I'm going to make as much art as possible and not care if it's "good enough" to sell or if it will "work" for licensing. I'm just going to make the art and have faith beauty will emerge. Some of the best things I've made have been when I just got lost in the moment of making art.

My art buddy Juliette Crane has been painting on paper and she has piles of paintings now that were quick to make and are lovely. And my friend Mindy Lacefield had a post of all her work from last year. Over 100 paintings. I can't even imagine accomplishing that! If I let go and just think of any minute spent on making art as valuable I know I will have a wonderful body of work. I'm just going to sketch, doodle, paint and create. Whatever time I get will be time well spent because I'm not going to worry about the "quality". I'm going to enjoy the process!

Here are fun charcoal sketches I've been making on book paper. They take a few minutes to create and they are so dang cute!

I love these little drawings. The charcoal has a nice bold line and you can easily smudge and shade for depth. I can see some of these pieces being used in something else down the road. Every mark has value because it leads to another and another and another.


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