Monday, November 15, 2010

Just So You Know

I've gotten a few emails from people asking if they can buy their facebook friends "Paintings" - and I'm flattered - BUT, the truth is, they aren't paintings really. They are just little drawings on little post-it sized pieces of paper. Come on. I'm not THAT crazy/ambitious. And I can't give them to you at this point because they are all a part of a much larger project.

Just so you know.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Portraits for Sale!!!

Hey, everybody! It's almost Christmas. Do you know what you're going to get for that person who's impossible to buy for? For me, it's my dear sweet Mother. (She either just buys what she wants for herself, or what she wants is WAY out of my price range.) Now, I've already given her a portrait (and I did it a few years ago, so it's a little bit heinous), but I'll bet most of you haven't given or received such a gift. Maybe you have and want another one. Either way, I'm happy to help you out.

Here's the Deal:
One person on a 9x12 ready-to-hang wood panel = $100 (add $20 for shipping and hassling if you can't pick it up)

That's it. Pretty simple.

Ready to make the dream come true? Here's all you have to do:
Email the request and a HIGH RESOLUTION photo to
Turn-around is around a week, but that DOES NOT include shipping.

Here's what a good picture looks like:

1. Must be high resolution - so nothing you pulled off of someone's facebook page.
2. Not too dark, not too light. I can see all of his features.
3. NO TOOTHY GRINS. People seemed to be shocked by this. What makes a good photo doesn't always make a good painting. Look around an art museum. How many pearly white smiles do you see? None. Smirks, frowns and other expressions are fine though.

Too dull & muddy. I can't make out his features.

Too bright. I can't make out his features here either.
These fine looking girls are just too far away.
Please forward all questions to:

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Greatest SciFest Video Ever Made. Ever.

Look what we made!!!

Scifest 2010 Promo from David Callahan on Vimeo.

Every bit is made out of paper.
Wanna know how we did it? Keep reading.

So, I have this co-worker. A videographer named Dave Callahan, but, for inside-joke purposes, we're going to refer to him as Reginald Houghton: A Man of Action. Reggie for short.
Now, I'm pretty good at having great ideas, but pretty bad at seeing them through. Insert Reggie: A Man of Action (and of ideas.) I'm not at all sure who came up with the "Let's make a video out of paper" idea, but, Reggie gets all the credit for it actually happening.

It started with a few storyboarding sessions:
(imagine pictures of awesome storyboard scans)

After several revisions and attempts at keeping ourselves reigned in, it was time to hit the most evil of all art stores – *cough*artmart*cough* – which unfortunately has the best selection of paper.

If you absolutely have to go there, be sure to buy way more than you actually need because when you go back to get more, they will be out of it and will have no idea if or when they will get more. In fact, use this rule of thumb for any products you buy there, and don't get too attached. They love to discontinue. I also suggest bringing your taxes along so you'll have something to do while you wait in line.
Armed with a box of 200 blades (I used them all), 4 cans of rubber cement, and my wicked skills, I start cutting. And cutting. And glueing. And crying (on the inside). I think it payed off though.

Most of these items were free cut due to laziness, but there were a few items that needed a template. Like the building:

I pulled a reversed photo into illustrator.

Then I started outlining.

I printed it out in chunks, covered the back of the print out in graphite, (a handy trick if you need to trace anything) and traced over all the lines on the proper color paper. And let me tell you people: these cuts were tiny. Bit by bit, each chunk came together.
Once the pieces were finished, John Schmitt, our photographer and my own personal opposer of everything, shot the shots.
After the photos were taken, the chunks were clipped out by either John or myself depending on whether he felt like doing it and I felt like letting him do it.

Then I flipped the picture back to it's rightful orientation and layed all the bits where they rightfully belong.
Once this was done, I gave all the files back to Reggie who did whatever it is that videographers do in After Effects. I was able to watch him work a little bit. It all seems about as simple as flying a spaceship to me. It's probably the same feeling others get when they watch me whiz through an inDesign file.

It doesn't seem so hard, does it? Well, multiply this process times a hundred and stretch it out over a period of 4 months all while trying to get your "real" work done and dodging the "when is that going to be done?" "Are you done yet?" "How many weeks until that video is finished?" questions from your work superiors. It was a little stressful at times, and I'm sure that a few years from now, when my skills are much sharper, I will look at it and cringe, but at this moment, I'm proud.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Coming Soon Eventually!

Check out these beautiful shadow boxes my dear, wonderful, amazing 95-year-old wood-working-genius friend, Mr. Ulrich, made me.

Get ready, Famous Fictional 2010. Here comes my A game.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I Have No Comma Sense.

For those of you who can't manage to enjoy my clever wit because you're having trouble seeing past all of the glaring punctuation problems, I apologize. I'm going to get control of it. I stress over every comma, "Does it go here? Should I put one there?" Periods, I think I have the hang of, but, a semi colon? FORGET IT. I think I've dared to use two ever in my life. Thank, God my favorite author, John Shore, co-wrote a book along with Richard Lederer that explain just where to put these pesky-but-necessary scratch marks in a sentence. Improvement is on it's way. I promise!

Monday, August 9, 2010

My Shark Boyfriend.

So, many were baffled by the meaning of this picture I posted on facebook. Allow me to explain. 

I'll keep it short. When I was a little girl, I had a reoccurring dream. In this dream, I live on a small island. The kind of small island town where nothing ever happens and everyone knows everyone else's boring business. A hot new guy moves into town. Simultaneously, girls start going missing. Where'd they go? Where'd they go? It can't be the hot guy. He's way to nice and attractive. No one knows. But I start following hot guy around. I follow him and some awful girl to the beach late one night. I watch them go out for a dip. I see a struggle out in the water. Awful blood curdling screams from the awful girl! Fins splashing around in the water! Silence. They've been eaten by sharks! But then, he slowly comes out of the water. Totally unfazed. Naked, but unfazed. They find her mangled body washed up on shore (what's left of it) and declare it a Shark attack!! (Why I didn't report what I saw, I don't know, but that's a 9 year olds dream for you) It gets weirder. I confront him. YES! I confront the boy who turns into a shark and eats people! He is of course bewitched by my brainy beauty and gumption and vows to eat only fish. Then we make out. (as best as a 9 year old dreaming she's sixteen can do). The end. Pretty good, right? I had this dream SO MANY TIMES throughout my life and I miss it. I miss my shark boyfriend! That ad for Shark Week just made me think of him. Sigh.

Off to bed I go. Maybe he'll come visit me. 

Shame Cleaning/Clean Desk Challenge 2010

We're moving. Me and all my pals in Design & Creative Services are being relocated up the street to a new/old building. (And we're not complaining) The architects of said building stopped in the other day to check out our current space so they could evaluate what our needs are. I didn't know they were coming. Sigh. You see, I'm a slob. Yes. There. I've said it. It's out there for the universe to judge. My not-so-secret shame. Anyone who's ever lived with me, worked with me, ridden in my car, or seen me from 100 yards away will tell you - "That girl is a mess."

Despite appearances, I don't think it's okay and am always horrified for people I don't know (and, people I do, really) to see my messes. It's probably how a bulimic would feel if they got caught bingeing. So, when the architects announced that they would be heading to the back room I had a full blown secret panic attack. The back room is a separate space from my desk - which is bad enough- where I do all of my paper-cutting. I followed them to the back while making my list of excuses. There was no stopping them though. They saw it. Lord knows what they thought. Really, they didn't seem to be phased. I'm sure they're around a lot of creative messies. But that doesn't make me feel any better.

This Humiliation, however, did induce a round of Shame Cleaning. Shame Cleaning is USUALLY a preventative measure you take BEFORE the crippling shame of someone seeing your mess. It's the fear of being caught that compels you, but, apparently the Shame itself can actually be used to fuel that cleaning fire, too. Who knew?

So, I cleaned both my desk AND the paper-cutting palace thanks to the help of my co-worker/neighbor/coupon clipping extraordinare, Nicole. And, as always, my fellow designers have taken bets on how quickly I will fail.

Despite the clutter, this is considered clean:

Note the presence of only ONE drinking apparatus. I've usually got 3 or 4 going at once.
Ooooo. So nice. Thanks to Nicole for her paper sorting expertise. Don't buy the purple handled hole punchers. They suck after the tenth punch.

I'll keep you posted.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Makin' Stuff Outta Paper

Paper. It's my new thing. I haven't had this much fun painting in a loooong time. How did this come about you ask? Let me tell you.

Every year, my job at the good ol' Saint Louis Science Center is to design the overall look for SciFest (a pretty cool 5 day science festival we host every year). The only problem is that the mascot we inherited for the event is this dumb doll head with these goofy glasses:
Luckily, I was able to talk the powers that be into letting me use my artistic genius to recreate the head every year in a different medium. (I actually work with pretty great folks who are really into letting creatives be creative - it didn't take much convincing.)

So last year I went with linoleum cut:

I hacked away until I got this:

Then I slopped ink all over it, and pressed it into paper to get this:

Which I scanned into the computer and cleaned up to get this:
Which ended up like this on the program cover which you may have seen last year in your Post Dispatch before you threw it in the garbage- I mean, the RECYCLE BIN:

But that was last year.

THIS YEAR, thanks to the last minute suggestion of my co-worker and opposer extraordinaire, John Schmitt, I went with paper.

The original sketch:

The crappy first version:
The mess in my apartment:
The knife wound that ruined any hopes I had for a hand modeling career:

The Final logo:
(click on picture to zoom in)
The final poster:

(click on picture to zoom in)

I'm really happy with how it turned out. All of the sleepless nights, caffeine-induced panic attacks and crying fits were well worth it.

Lots more to come concerning paper. Stay tuned. Right now we're working on a Paper-Cut commercial that I'll post when it's finished. And yes co-workers, it WILL get finished.

Want to know more about the greatness of paper? Check out these sites:

Monday, July 19, 2010

Personalized Pinata Portrait

Would you buy one? I'd like to think that you would.

What could be more fun than beating the tar out of someone you love until candy and cheap plastic toys explode out of their heads?

The Big Deal - Part 2

Part 2? Where's part 1? I'll tell you - it's saved in my drafts. It got a little bit deeper and introspective than I care to go publicly. A lot about the process, where I feel like I'm headed. Mush. Mush. Barf. Eyeroll. Not the me that you know. So, ON TO PART 2!!

As I was saying in Part 1 that you will never read, I had my first solo show in May. A Big Deal. One room. Twenty newish paintings. For those of you who couldn't make it in the five weeks that it was up, here's what you jerks missed:

As many of you know, I'm very sweet, loving, compassionate and HIGHLY irritable. I have a list of pet peeves a kilometer long and here is the start of a series inspired by them.

Get Behind Me Laugh-Talker - Not everyone minds it when someone is laughing so hard while telling a story that you can hardly make out what they are saying. Not everyone agrees that no story can ever be as funny as you build it up to be when you do that. Not everyone is highly annoyed when a story takes 3 times as long as it needs to when the teller is spitting and spewing and red-faced. But I do.

One of These Days.... - Oh, future husband. I apologize in advance for all the dirty looks you will receive from me anytime you are consuming food or drink within an earshot of me. Slurping, loud-swallowing, sucking and chewing - it's all like nails on a chalk board to me. It doesn't mean I don't love you the rest of the time.

The Demasculanization of Men - This issue goes far deeper than the physical primping, but I'll keep it light. So light that I won't even say more, because I'll just start ranting and making a bunch of pretty-boy lovers mad. There's room for all kinds in this big ol' world of ours... I guess.

Unlitterally - I believe you mean figuratively.

Waistlines are on the Rise, Right? - Thankfully, I believe this trend has passed it's peak, at least among the female population. You're next boys with your boxers out.

Can't Buy You Love - 'Cause it sold.

Amy At Last - If you are persistent enough with your "Paint me! And don't make me one of those ugly people." requests. Eventually, I'll paint you. Amy can testify.

Pessy Penguin - What goes better with a picture of Amy than a picture of Pat?

Another Butt.

Many Mini Flowers - I like making stuff that's just pretty sometimes. Mindlessly doodling one day I stumbled upon a technique that I LOVE. Apparently, craft paper, Sharpies & colored pencils are a magical combination.

A couple of birds.

Hold on to Your Ice Cream When Angels Start Falling From the Sky - This is one of my favorites that usually gets a "Meh" from (most) everyone else. It happened in one of those rare moments when I was just having fun and wasn't giving one thought to whether or not anyone else would like it. I need more of these moments.

Adam's Passivity in the Garden - Being a Christan (albeit a crappy one - but hey, that's the point, none of us will - WAIT - not now) is a monumental part of me. But I confess, I've always had trouble marrying the artist and the believer sides of myself. This was my first REAL attempt at biblical subject matter. I never touched it because it's so sacred to me and my style is anything but sacred. Humor and color. That's my thing. But, I think I've opened a door here. I can be funny AND colorful AND cynical AND make a serious personal statement!! Go me.

Jaws & Moby - Okay, so these were in another St. Louis show. I cheated. A little. But I'm proud of these guys, and I sold them in this show so it's fine. Money wins.

Hope you enjoyed. More to come.

I love you.