Monday, December 31, 2012

Waiting ...

It's almost here!

May 2013 be full of bright surprises, meaningful work, good health
and plenty of love!

See you next year :)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas Pins & Holiday Art

This set of Commodore candle holder angels is one of my favorite
finds this season. 
Since becoming a regular on PinterestI no longer feel the need to 
own everything that charms me, but I did see a similar set in Jen's Closet on Etsy. 
The worried angel on the left is so sweet and I love their varied expressions. 
The one next to her is like, what's wrong? pull it together
while the one next to her is like, huh, when do we sing? 
and the angel far right appears to be checking out some fella!

Holt Howard Reindeer candle holder 1950s

I thought I'd share some of the cute Christmas images from my
Pinterest Holiday board
They're mostly vintage, hard to resist the cute & the kitsch,
especially at the holidays.

Okay, this tree and room look hideous, but I'm sure someone once thought it was stunning. 

Oh, Jane.

Frosty Balls! Great stocking stuffer

This is Hatcher Pass in Alaska, beautiful.

Pinterest is packed with pins of cute animals. Still, this guy managed to stand out.

bottle brush snowman 1950s

Lefton snow baby figurine, looking demonic. Perfect for the holidays.

Not Christmas-y, just love them!

I adore this illustration and most of the old Holiday covers. 
As a magazine fan, I was surprised I'd never
seen Holiday before stumbling across these covers on Pinterest.
It was published from 1946-1977 and ran mostly long form travel pieces.

I just found a blog devoted to Holiday Magazine by 
Josh Lieberman and this is an interesting piece he wrote for The Paris Review 
here's a tiny excerpt -
"The most puzzling thing about the lost history of Holiday is that the magazine published so many famous writers: Joseph Heller, Irwin Shaw, Arthur C. Clarke, E. B. White, Arthur Miller, Gay Talese, Paul Bowles, Steinbeck, Saroyan, Kerouac, Cheever, O’Hara, Bellow, Thurber, Faulkner. 
It was in Holiday that Truman Capote declared that he lived in Brooklyn—by choice!"

Greetings from Brooklyn

I did a little window shopping in the West Village last week and
came upon two cool shops, Sockerbit , meaning sugar cube in English,
specializing in Scandinavian candies :)
I stopped for their sweet window display, showcasing
super cute matchbox mice by the Danish company, Maileg 

Next door is Shalva. The nicest salesgirl (in window) was giving out samples. 
I tried their hand scrub, with minerals from the Dead Sea. It felt fabulous and left a 
trace of oil, making my hands feel softer than they've been in years! 
I will definitely return to buy myself a luxurious gift or two :)

This unusual vintage card with dog face is by John Hovenstine

He's made several cute & funny cards like this, available at 
J.Hovenstine Studios on Etsy. Wish I had bought the double pug card for a friend.

Bob Staake from "Look Another Book"

I'm happy to report that I finally made it up to The Original Art Show at 

There was a lot of terrific work! 
Unfortunately, I took the worst photos of some of my personal favorites.
Here are just a few of the pictures I can share. 

Dan Santat from "Bawk and Roll"

It's fun to see the originals plus read the names of the art directors,
editors and publishers that collaborate to make children's books the works of art 
they're capable of becoming.
Copies of the published books were included so you could compare the 
original to the reproductions and see the full stories. 
Several kids were there enjoying the exhibit and a few others, like me, 
were busy taking notes and studying details.

Jessie Hartland from "How the Dinosaur Got to the Museum"

I envy these illustrators, of course, but it's inspiring to see exhibits like this 
and to get a close-up view of the level of work being made.

Chris Van Dusen from "Randy Riley's Really Big Hit"

There seems to be an equal amount of old school painting and digital processes 
at work, as well as some nice combinations of the two. 
There was also an elaborate cut-paper piece by Giles Laroche 

Back to holidays

Have a lovely Christmas

Thanks for stopping by :)
xo, A

Monday, December 10, 2012

Custom Christmas Card Sets

Merry Christmas Mouse!

Holiday Card Fun Packs available @ Blip Blop Shop
Create your Custom Set of any 8 or 12 Christmas Cards
and get More for Less! 

Twig & Bird, Top Dog, Baby Birds, Terrier, Snow Deer, Santa's Mouse
and Christmas Cat Wish You a Very Happy Holiday Season!
Come Visit Us today :)

xo, A

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Holiday Art, Books for Kids & a little Film about Fracking

I LOVE the Snowman in Court Street Grocers window!
It makes me smile each time I walk by it, which is often.

My friend, Margaret Heidenry, is in the Screen Writers Guild and fortunately
invited me to see the screening of Gus Van Sant's new movie "Promised Land
written by and starring Matt Damon and John Krasinsky. 
It's an excellent picture and the 1st I've seen to tackle the topic of 
FrackingPromised Land sheds light on both sides of the issue, 
while not letting big corporations, this one named "Global", off the hook.
Surprisingly, it's entertaining and gets the point across without being heavy handed.

Afterwards, there was a Q & A with Matt, John and Rosemarie DeWitt.
As expected, they were charming and very funny. I really could 
have stayed in my seat and listened all night.

The odd thing that Margaret and I, both, noticed was the number of people
on their cell phones, texting, checking messages, etc. I think the guy next to 
me was even checking Facebook during the movie?!
I might be less disgusted were it an opportunity to feel superior 
over the younger generation, but these were middle aged adults & older. 
Crazy. C'mon people.

Sunday, I met Kristine Lombardi at Books of Wonder to hear a stellar panel
discuss their latest books and share their thoughts about the publishing world.

December Picture Book Bonanza
James Howe - Otter and Odder: A Love Story
Corey Rosen Schwartz - The Three Ninja Pigs
Lane Smith - Abe Lincoln's Dream
Bryan Collier - I, Too, am America
Susan Hood - Spike, the Mixed-Up Monster
Melissa Sweet - *illustrator; Spike, the Mixed-Up Monster
Douglas Florian - Shiver Me Timbers!
UnBEElievables: Honey Bee Poems & Paintings
Michelle Knudsen - Big Mean Mike

James Howe, Corey Rosen Schwartz and Lane Smith 

           It's always fun to see writers and illustrators you admire in person. 
         Each one read a bit from their latest children's books.
                          It's interesting how ideas come about and develop into stories.
                         I love that Corey Rosen Schwartz has a son who told someone that 
                               "yes, he speaks a 2nd language, Karate." That sparked the idea for 
                                                              The Three Ninja Pigs.
                                  James Howe mentioned that Otter and Odder, first came about 
                                                 when his daughter was still a kid. She's now 24.

Lane Smith, Bryan Collier and Susan Hood
Bryan Collier's book, I, Too, Am America, is based on Langston Hughes' poem 
It's beautiful and he spoke, not only about this true story, 
but about the real people he uses as his models. These friends and neighbors
 end up serving a dual purpose. For instance, the young man on the cover, 
was thrilled when he went to school with a copy and learned that the girls 
thought he was cute!

Melissa Sweet, Douglas Florian and Michelle Knudson 
Susan Hood spoke about wanting Melissa Sweet, a favorite of mine and many,
to illustrate Spike, the Mixed Up Monster about an Axolotl 
(an endangered Mexican Salamander) 
Some are cuter than others and Melissa, obviously fashioned hers after 
a precious one!
I can't remember how long Susan said she had to wait, but 
Melissa is usually booked for up to three years at a time.
Can you imagine? She's truly living an illustrator's dream.
Not that she doesn't deserve it, but I couldn't help thinking that instead of
waiting, maybe the publisher could have taken a chance with a
lesser known artist, or an unknown even. 
All of these books look and sound great!
 I hope to have the chance (extra cash) to buy them all, as gifts
(for me ;)
Now, onto my humble artwork, patiently waiting for it's moment in the sun! 

These are a few of the Christmas cards I've added to my Etsy Shop
Now accepting payments by Credit Card, as well as, PayPal

Snow Deer and Chickadee in *square format on Etsy

 Twig and Top Dog, a mainstay for me 

*Below are Prints, Stationery & even a few iphone & ipod case designs
I recently added to my Society 6 shop for the holidays.

Snow deer 5 x 7 size

*Society 6 is offering FREE Shipping on all orders in
my shop through Sunday Dec. 9, 2012 Midnight Pacific Time*
Click Here to browse and buy that perfect holiday gift or card set :)

A Gifted Dog 
Here are some other recently added pieces

A Christmas Cat 

Lyle the Terrier

Dog in Space

Elephant draws

There is more to offer in my shop, please take a look!
Feel free to contact me about commissions or purchasing an original.

 If I Were a Toy store has decorated! 

My Carolers are happy & still singing.
and this Friday Night, December 7th at 6pm, is the Carroll Park Tree Lighting
Apparently, Santa and his elves will make an appearance. 
Shouldn't they be working?

Thanks for stopping by. Hope your holidays are off to a good start!



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