March Artists Challenge

Sorry guys and gals.. running a little late this month….

But lets get this party started… see if we can convince a few more of you to  put pen to paper..or mouse to pad..or finger to blood.. however you do your thing….  heh.. no judgement here..art is art right haha  Once you have seen a guy who caters his diet to produce poop of certain shades so he can paint with it.. and then people actually buy it… nothing and I mean NOTHING surprised me when it comes to  creative minds lol.

I forget the  name of the show, but it was some crazy show back in the UK late at night with.. two french guys and a couple of stick giraffe’s.. yeah don’t ask.. Pee Pee and po po I think they called them lol.. the giraffes that is. and then of course the chick with the biggest pair of boobs I have EVER seen… yeah  that was one crazy show… I am sure someone will know what I am talking about… it was like they traveled the world looking for the weirdest people and habits and lifestyles they could find..and trust,e .. they found A LOT of  them lol.

Anyone remember the show I am referring to?

anywho..  back on track.. thank you to everyone who  joined in last month… love seeing what new stuff you all come up with…. so.. what have I got for you this month?

“Up close and personal”

Inspiration for those that need it:

I’d love to see some nice tight close crop images….something for everyone to practice skin, hair, texture type techniques on, head shots or closer.  Whether your head is an animal, human, robot, alien or flora… or anything else you can come up with.

If you really want to be up close and personal..  how about a self portrait… show us how YOU see YOU… even if it’s not “realistic”

RULES

  • Each artist may enter up to 10 individual NEW digital stamp images per given theme.
  • Images can go on sale as soon as they have been entered into the challenge.
  • You may add single images, or link to a blog post with up to 10 images..but each image must be entered in the challenge linky individually.
  • You may showcase the images in color, or projects on your blog links should you wish to show off  inspirational images too.

February Artists Challenge

“You suck!!!”

 

No it’s not a statement, or an observation lol…. it’s the new Artist Challenge theme for February.

A  few ideas to tickle the palette..as always these are just for inspiration.. feel free to use any inspiration that reflects the theme, lots of room for artistic license 🙂

Lollipops
vacuum
Vampires
milk shake
hummingbird
lottery machine
tornado
Flowbee.. I know ya’all remember the Flowbee from the 80’s….fess up…. who bought one?

RULES

  • Each artist may enter up to 10 individual NEW digital stamp images per given theme.
  • Images can go on sale as soon as they have been entered into the challenge.
  • You may add single images, or link to a blog post with up to 10 images..but each image must be entered in the challenge linky individually.
  • You may showcase the images in color, or projects on your blog links should you wish to show off  inspirational images too.

Lets see what you got!

KennyK and my ‘AHA moment’

Now I know there are a few of you who  already started humming  “Take on me”  ….even if only in your head.  Admit it, you know the song and  you secretly wished some hot guy would drag you off  into the pages of a  magazine.. or hot steamy romance book.

* whistles innocently.

Or if you are one of  our male crafters.. maybe you want to be him instead and drag some cute chick off to woo with your sketchings. but that just sounds like the weird dude at the park… so … let’s not go there lol.

Well…  here we are 30 years later.. and we’re not watching those sketchy scenes anymore. Most of us are either drawing them, or coloring them.  I have to say, Morton Harket still looks pretty damned hot… I saw some recent pics and he scrubs up pretty good LOL.

Anywho, I digress… back to the project

and what a project this one was! as you can probably tell it’s inspired by…. AHA …. yup I had my AHA moment.   Now  this one was a doozy;  it was quite a process just to get to this stage and I have a feeling by the time I finish matting and framing this guy, there is gonna be a second white mat  with some comic strip style layout  surrounding him and his black mat board.  I guess we shall see…. one day.

I’ll show  more details below.. but the quick run through on this one…

Canson Mixed Media Paper, colored with Chameleons, over color with Crayola Color Escapes Pencils… scanned, reprinted, background depth using a  black Zig Scroll & Brush pen.. additional shading and outline definition  done with a charcoal gray Color Escapes… signed .. matted.. BINGO

I find it useful to take progress pics as I work, so I can sit back and look at them  on my comp as I drink my tea and take a break.  For some reason it really helps me look at it with a more critical eye  and helps me spot areas I may need to work on, better than looking at the actual project.  It also gives me a more accurate view of projects that are meant to be viewed at a distance…. like  framed art etc.  When I get up and walk off to do something…. I find propping up my work and leaving it in full view  for a few hours, or days helps when I feel I am just not quite seeing the problem…. but I know it’s just not quite right.

I have a tendency to ruin  projects by not knowing when to stop “trying” *sigh…. so I try and give myself breaks at strategic points, to  avoid that happening so often.

What I really love about this particular project, is that the various stages of progression gave me some ideas  on other  things I wanted to try with this concept.  One of them being a version with only the skin colored in markers and pencil and the rest black and white/graycale.  I think that one will look really cool.

Anyway enough of my ramblings, let’s face it…..I just like to goof around and try things. Some work, some don’t….sometimes they all work for you… for different reasons and you have to decide which one to go with first. The only thing that matters is having fun and trying new things and NOT trying to compete with other crafters and constantly comparing your work to others. when it  comes to art and creativity…. the rule is

…. THERE ARE NO RULES !!

….so here are the progress snapshots and the final  project  matted and ready to frame…or maybe double matted THEN framed later lol…and some product links for anyone interested.

I printed light by adjusting the layer opacity in my graphics program on Canson Mix Media paper and then colored with Chameleon skin tone marker NU00.  I know I know.. one shouldn’t color with markers on papers designed for  other media…. but I have refills …and I can, because I want to …. I am such a rebel !!!   LOL remember THERE ARE NO RULES!!


I would be lying if I said I recall exactly what colors I used at this stage.  I know the blue for the pants was BL4 Cornflower Blue.. but I used a mix of grays  for the hat, leather straps and chaps.  One of which I am pretty sure was  the CG8  Cool Gray from the original 22 pen set  and the others  came from the gray tones  5 pack.  Background was sketched in with pencil.

I tried detailing the outline with a fab new pen I got just before Christmas, it’s called a Bimoji Marker and this is the fine tip one… and I really like the look of it on  the test piece on the right.  Comp crashed and I got a print fail… so decided to use it as a test sheet.  but it wasn’t quite gellin with what I had in my head for this particular piece.  But this is definitely something I am going to  use on another project, I love this sketchy look with impact.

In the end I compromised and did the detailing and outlines with a charcoal gray pencil. because I printed this as a soft print with light lines, It  needed to be brought out in the coloring instead.  This is the first time I have really tried the no outlines /soft outlines style… and I actually like it… for SOME projects.  I think it really depends on the individual project and images as to whether pen, or pencil works best.

One last quick note… since I obscured the background with this sketchy AHA inspired  look, don’t forget to add your artists signature back in somewhere on your piece.  Mine is tucked up under the mat, but will also be added to the back on a label with details.  Since this piece may well end up as an Abandoned Art Project at some point, I want to make sure credit is assigned to  the artist… the one and only KennyK.

………. and so, here he is “Tex” by KennyK

This is one of my mystery DT projects from the January 2017 Crafty Awesomeness Challenge which you are more than welcome to come enter.

Challenges entered

craftingfromtheheartchallengeblog No.143

I will be compensated for  purchases made through affiliate links on this page

 

January 2017 Artists Challenge

Ok…  let’s have some  fun with a new theme for our fab artists.  I was sat here thinking of a new theme and smelling Double Chocolate Chocolate muffins permeate the air. I get to work, while the boys get to make goodies… but dang it smells good lol.
Not that THAT has anything whatsoever with the theme I came up with..I just thought I would share.  I am actually prepping this post up early,since we all have so much going on over the Holidays… me included.

I hope they aren’t ALL for Santa Claus…..

Anywho… by the time this post goes live;  the holidays will be virtually over, the  presents will all be opened,  the tree will be looking a bit neked if it’s even still up.  Some of you will be nursing hangovers and memories of another fab New Year with friends and family.  The trees will be coming down soon, the lights packed away for another year and  2016 will be officially OVER.  So in honor of 2016, a fab year filled with some fantastic crafters and artists and designers.. and  a farewell to our blinky lights and glitter ornaments…

Here is our new theme inspired in part by the end of a year, the glam and the glitz of hollywood and a whole bunch of crazy ideas…. some of which I listed below for anyone needing inspiration.

“It’s a wrap”

 

Who could think It’s a wrap without thinking of Hollywood and  movie making..   leading ladies, hearththrobs, glamour and glitz.  The Awards season is upon us… if you needed any additional ideas, check out this list. Awards Season Calendar  Please someone  do the SAG awards lol… It’s just begging for some humorous old Hollywood Broad with saggy…. everythings. 

How  about Egyptian mummies? nothing like an ancient dead person to inspire a few age jokes.

….or if you like bandages but aren’t too keen on dead people… there is always the medical  .. get well images for broken bones, bumped heads etc.

Want some more humor… how about  the old weight loss wraps, perfect for all of those New Year Resolutions.. that most of us are NEVER gonna keep.

Wrap inspired keywords:

baby, candy, gift, nails, hair, hollywood, movies,end, finished, awards .. let’s see what you come up with.

RULES

  • Each artist may enter up to 10 individual NEW digital stamp images per given theme.
  • Images can go on sale as soon as they have been entered into the challenge.
  • You may add single images, or link to a blog post with up to 10 images..but each image must be entered in the challenge linky individually.
  • You may showcase the images in color, or projects on your blog links should you wish to show off  inspirational images too.


Super simple wooden easel effect

This was another one of the recent cut files I bought from CraftsUPrint by Designer Clive Couter  “Artists Easel Card”. The sample on the site was very feminine, so I decided to try something different.  I went for a super simple look.   The cut file is really quick and simple .. just 3 cuts, 5 folds and a couple of spots of glue..and voila! one easel ready to decorate. I chose to keep it simple and added a handful of die cuts …. but you could be as simple, or as fussy with the decor as you like.

Nice versatile design that could be used for cards, signs, seating arrangements and so much more.  Throw on some chalkboard vinyl and some chalk pens and it would be a great one for kids, or teachers…. homeschooling awards, So many possibilities!

Materials for this one are super easy… 110lb card stock, some ink pads, glue and some die cuts.  This would be a fun and easy projects for the kids too.  Add a photo or drawing and send it to Grandma ..or pop it on a shelf with an inspirational quote.
happy_easel

I will be compensated for purchases made through affiliate links on this page

 

Digi Artists Challenge December 2016

Welcome to the new schedule for the Artists Challenge…this Challenge is for Digital Stamp Artists and Designers….and it is now monthly.  It’s just a fun challenge, with fun themes, set by yours truly to get the creative juices flowing.
artist_challenge
Thank you to everyone who entered last quarter, fab images again. If you haven’t seen them yet or previous challenge images,  you can find them in the challenge tab at the top of the page 🙂 I am looking forward to coloring them up when I get a minute to think straight LOL  It’s been a bit crazy round here with all the goings on the past few months….and I am sure it’s been equally crazy for all of  the artists too, getting ready for Black Friday, Cyber Monday,Holiday Sales and all that fun stuff.

So  let’s just jump right in with this months Challenge theme.. which is…..

“TEMPTATIONS”

… lots of room for Artistic License and interpretation here…. so let’s see what you guys have got  for us this month.   Show us your guilty pleasure ! ( and no.. a bucket of ice cream is not ok Mrs K lol  .. just kidding )  ..or maybe you are old school and have your own interpretation of a classic song by The Temptations.  Get your thinking caps on and your pen lids off….

… Ready … Set… GO…!!!!!

RULES

  • Each artist may enter up to 10 individual NEW digital stamp images per given theme.
  • Images can go on sale as soon as they have been entered into the challenge.
  • You may add single images, or link to a blog post with up to 10 images..but each image must be entered in the challenge linky individually.
  • You may showcase the images in color, or projects on your blog links should you wish to show off  inspirational images too.

 


UPDATES to the Artists Challenge

Ok, just an FYI…. after some feedback from some of  the Artists, the following changes will be made to the Artists Challenge.

artist_challenge
1: Artists can list their new images for Sale… AS SOON AS  they are entered in the challenge, instead of having to wait till the challenge is over.  This is effective immediately.

2 : The Artists Challenge will become a monthly challenge instead of quarterly. Effective after the current challenge is complete.  Monthly Schedule will begin December 1st

You can find the current challenge here  Current Artists challenge

Stamping and coloring on Plaster of Paris

Yup…I went and done it again lol

went off on another one of my crazy little adventures in crafting.. so who’s along for the ride… All ABOARD !!!

SO.. long story short, one of the girls on one of the Facebook coloring/cardmaking groups I am in.. shared a post about another Facebook Group and this crazy worldwide thing they got going on.  It was late, I was between projects and being as the giveaways ended ..I figured it was hookey time for me..  so I went off to read the article she was a featured artists in and ended up checking out this group.

It’s called Art Abandonment…. some of you may have heard about it already on my Facebook page and wall…  some of you may not.

So anywho.. I decided me and the lil guy just had to get involved in this and so I signed up…. I needed a project that was  cheap, preferably with materials I already have and something both of us could do together..and maybe even get hubby in on  it.  He’s not  the crafty type… but he will try and join in when we ask lol.

The group are fantastic….I wasn’t sure if this was even an idea that would fly as abandoned art.. but they were all totally supportive. So here we are.. and I have yet another crazy project idea to share.

The first batch of abandoned art  me and the lil guy will be doing is these………….. I don’t have a technical term for it.. so call it what you will.  I’m just going to call it “stamped PoP rounds”

Ok so if you follow the blog at all you will remember I picked up some Stazon Ink pads to use on my acetate a week or so ago…. so.. for the record that is also the ink I am using on these projects to stamp with.

The Blank rounds are made with Plaster of Paris, I find craft stores charge too much for too little… so I always try and grab mine at the local DIY store because when I get stuck into projects like this… I’m gonna make a lot.   I actually had  virtually untouched and an unopened bag sitting around already from other project ideas…. so I was sorted.   A 25 lb bag will set you back about $15 at Lowes or Home Depot.

Pop

Mixing instructions come on the pack … but I’m not one to A follow instructions B wait patiently… so I tend to mix mine up a bit thicker and  that speeds up dry time..  that also drops the time you have to shake it around and get air bubbles out and make it nice and smooth… so if you are a newb at this ..try their ratios and don’t mix too much at a time.  The time you save with a thicker mix will be  doubled when you have to start sanding the back flat because you didn’t get it  leveled in time.

 

Ok molds… molds molds.. you can get sooo many molds for  plaster of paris  silicon, rubber, plastic… just depends on what you are doing and how many times it will need to be reused. For this project,  you don’t need anything fancy.. just a simple  shallow shape round square whatever you have handy…  just make sure whatever you use if you are recycling…. that it has some flexibility to it.  You can get items out of rigid molds EVENTUALLY lol…  but if you are new to this and just want to craft and have fun… don’t do it lol.

shaker 1

 

For this particular project, I just happen to have some shaker windows that I won’t sell because they have some imperfections…  nothing major and nothing that will affect this project.. but still.

..So I keep those in my stash for blog projects and other craziness where tiny blemishes aren’t a big deal for me.  These are 3 inch diameter and 1/4 inch deep.  I have a few other shapes and sizes and depths.. but have’t tried them yet.  Obviously these won’t handle mass production… but I have already reused  the set I put aside for this 4 or so times… no problems at all.

 

 

 

 

 

testpiece

 

 

The first one I did as a tester… was just a random stamped floral pattern…   nothing spectacular.. and to be fair the PoP wasn’t even really dry  yet…. it was dry enough to stamp and color on.. but still holding a lot of moisture. As we will discover.. that does make a difference LOL

 

 

 

 


Eagle_wmd

This one … is a mixed media.. the red and blue are Crayola inks that came with the blank markers I picked up in a Crayola Marker Maker kit on Clearance at Walmart …and usually use as blender pens.

The  Eagle is colored with a fine brush and Ranger Adironack Ink.

As is this sunflower PoP round below….  this was  colored with Adironack Inks and a fine brush.

sunflower_wmd

 

cover_up

 

 

 

Foobahhed!  (messed up)… cover up with Stazon base and then stamped a few ghostly images in White Stazon, dropped blue and purple Adirondack on background and over stamped a last time with White Stazon while still wet

 

 

wax_crayon

 

 

 

 

Wax crayon heat bonded with embossing heat tool…polished with scrap paper to lift off excess

 

 

 

 


pencil

 

 

Cheap $8 pencils from Walmart blended with Isopropyl alcohol in a marker pen

 

 

 

 

pooch

 

 

Adironack Inks and a fine brush

 

 

 

 

 

 

mono

 

 

 

 

Adironack inks in a blender pen with a touhc of Ranger distress ink pen

 

 

 

 

Pebeo

 

 

 

 

Pebeo Porcelaine 150 glass paints. ( original version  ) Now renamed and with new colors, but available at Michaels.

 

 

 

 

 

And this is the results after spraying with Modge Podge Acrylic Matte sealer ( except the wax and Pebeo versions )

Conclusion…

Adironack inks fade to a much gentler color.. but still really nice results. In some cases the color change was quite remarkable..not just a fade ….but a total color change.  Most noticeable on the Hello floral and  the text on the pooch.

Pebeo glass paints retain vibrancy and is probably the most durable of all the techniques. Water based so can be watered down to make painting easier, specially if they are old like mine and a bit thick. << the paints.. not me lol.

Pencil is  harder to apply, but  gives a soft color

Stazon is great to do a cover up if you mess up the original stamping and can give a vintage Goth look with some fun color effects when mixed with  inks. Be warned, when sealed the inks will bleed into the white Stazon.. but it looked cool LOL ..and you could easily spray THEN apply the white design and  the spray a second coat.

Wax Crayon –  very  strong coverage and depth of color… but not as durable since it has no top coat.  Great if it won’t be handled much…and def a cheap fun  project for the youngsters, obviously with adult supervision since you are using heat tools.

Crayola markers... great  way to do this project on a budget,  or with kids, but make sure your base blank is fully dry and expect some soft bleeding and color absorption when sealed.

Alcohol based markers  same as with the Adironack inks.. a softer more subtle color after a day or so….sealer will brighten them up quite some… but not to the original color depth.

Now I can’t say at this point whether residual moisture in the blanks is partly to  blame for some of the color shifts etc… or whether they would still react this way if fully dried and  a few weeks old…  I guess we will find out 🙂   but all in all even the  Crayola marker one which was very “new” and had a lot of moisture… still shifted into something kinda cool.  But I am guessing that if I had waited a day or so and done it, the shift wouldn’t be quite so dramatic… and if I hadn’t of already sealed it I could have done a second coat to  make it much like the original image before it absorbed the inks.
collective

Now that is a lot of information and still doesn’t really cover everything..so please feel free to ask questions based on specific need to knows and I will do my best to answer them 🙂 But at the end of the day… the best way is to jump in and try it with whatever media you have at hand or want to try.   We all have different tastes, budgets and requirements ..sky’s the limit !!!

so .. Comment away and feel free to share your results  if and when you try this 🙂

 

 


I will be compensated for purchases made using affilaite links on this page

Sasayaki Glitter Facebook Group Freebie… awww too cute

sasayaki_freebie_group



Sasayaki Glitter
have this cutie  over on their Facebook group.… Naz was another of the Spotlight Series guest featured on the blog recently…  if you missed it …check out her Spotlight Q&A and all her fab images.

AND she is also one of the artists taking part in the first ever Artists Challenge on the blog.. the theme this quarter is “Shakespeare” …. can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with.  It’s a quarterly challenge for artists… just for fun.



Spotlight Series Day 28 , Marcella – Power Poppy

 

MarcellaHawley-withDoug

 

Who are you?  
Marcella Hawley, owner, illustrator, and creative director of Power Poppy

Where are you?
Midwest is best! (I saw that on a t-shirt)

 

logo

 

Power Poppy by Marcella Hawley
Power Poppy Blog
Instagram: @marcellahawley

 


When did you first start drawing/designing seriously?
My mom used to tell a story from when I was about four, a nursery school teacher said, “Marcy, when you grow up, do you want to be an artist?” I replied, “I already am an artist!” I developed cartoons based on my friends and our adventures, spent hours figuring out how to hand-letter skateboarding logos, illustrated album backer cards at my high school job as a record store clerk — but after i got a degree in Graphic Design from the University of Illinois, I started getting paid to do art and design. How do ya like them apples!

Which decade do you think had the best music?
Huge music fan from all decades and so many genres. Punk rock, classical, jazz, funk, soul, Americana, rock n’ roll, ska, power pop… there’s so much in there I could never narrow it down!

How many people work for/with you?
We are fortunate to work with so many smart, talented, good people. I am based in my St. Louis studio, we have an awesome advisor for marketing and business in Montana, and we have a two incredible teams of designers from all over the world who show the possibilities with our stamp designs: the Bloom Brigade and the Instant Gardeners. I have excellent vendors and distribution folks, too. Also, my kids help pack up orders. 🙂

What was the first product you ever had for sale?
For the longest time I didn’t create products, I worked as a graphic designer, botanical illustrator, and magazine art director helping other folks promote and sell their wonderful products. 10 years ago I started a design and branding studio, working for all kinds of clients, from entrepreneurs to global companies, and I still operate this business. I launched Power Poppy by Marcella Hawley in 2014. My very first product was the Azalea stamp set, and it remains one of our best sellers.

PPAPR1401_Azalea

PowerPoppy_Azalea_Handpainted_MarcellaHawley

Here’s an example of my watercolor/gouache treatment of this stamp

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Name your favorite cartoon.
Old school Bugs Bunny. Grew up watching Looney Tunes and still am entertained by the humor and cleverness of the team that put those together. Big fan of Mel Blanc. Those cartoons helped shape my sense of humor! Along with Stan Freberg, Three Stooges, and my dad.


Favorite quote?
Again, I have so many! But this one by gardener Alan Lacy sums me up pretty well: “I was born in the spring and never got over it.”

What’s your favorite craftroom/business supply or tool that you couldn’t live without?
Sakura Pigma Micron pens/Bristol illustration board, and my trusty Mac loaded up with the Adobe Creative Cloud apps.

When you get the midnight munchies… what do you grab?
Cheezits are my downfall. So I really try not to buy them, or I will eat the whole box.

If your parents had named you something else… what would you have picked?
That is a great question! As a kid, I wished my parents had named me, and this is how I would spell it, “Anjelikka” — and oh, how I am grateful that they did not take me up on this concept. I’m named after the little girl in the Raggedy Ann series of books by Johnny Gruelle, which was also the name of his daughter: Marcella.

MarcellaHawley_PeoniesinmyGarden

 

 

 


If you were getting a tattoo… what would it be?
While my guy has a bunch of tattoos, I have harbored no desire to get one. I mean, once you get it, there it is forever. That said, recently I started seeing gorgeous botanical tattoos of a few artists on Instagram, so beautifully done and without the thick black outline…. wouldn’t a wisp of rosemary intertwined with a budding peony be kind of cool?

 

 



What is your best and worst personality trait?
Best trait: I’m a positive person and I like to bring a positive spark to others, even by just being cheerful to you know, the gas station checkout guy up the street. That just might make him feel a little more cheerful, and then he’ll pass it on, and so forth.
Worst trait: Extreme over-scheduler, over-complicator and procrastinator. So, I guess that is three worst things. Good thing I’m so positive or that could be really depressing!

What is your favorite piece in the whole store?
It is so hard to pick a favorite, I’m sure you hear that all the time, but they are all my babies. I’m a fan of the “more is more” school of thought, so my true favorites tend to be the more rich and intricate images. One that I am very proud of is Daffodils, and particularly in that set, I love the bouquet of multiple Daffodil varieties bundled with Muscari. When I see what crafters do with this image, I almost feel like crying. Folks are so talented, and it’s just really heartwarming to watch how each person uniquely brings my artwork to life.

PPAPR1503_Daffodils

Daffodils_2Bblog_2B2-wm

Gorgeous card sample using the image from Daffodils that I love, by designer Katie Sims:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gotta pick a favorite digital stamp, too, Spring Meadow Bouquet. I am all about seeking out, celebrating, and illustrating plants that aren’t the most popular or in the mainstream. Everybody can draw a daisy. I like to draw Fritillaria meleagris, Leucojum aestivum, Dicentra spectabilis… I’m a plant nerd to the core. I hope to convert others to more exotic plants, and help teach them that there is more to life than Tulips. Though I do enjoy Tulips. 🙂

PPMAR1602D_SpringMeadowBouquet

PP_2BSpring_2BMeadow_2B2_2BCO_2B0316

A gorgeous card made using this digi by designer Christine Okken:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


If you were reincarnated…who would you have been in a former life?

Gosh, I would love to think that it was someone like Gertrude Jekyll, the British horticulturist and garden designer. But it was probably more like an odd Trillium plant out in the woods somewhere.

What’s your favorite color?
All shades of green. I am passionate about green – the essence of plants, moss, lichen, ahhhhhh green.

When no one is listening…. do you sing in the shower?
I sing in the shower whether or not someone is listening. Also, in the car and at my desk

MarcellaHawley_FrontsideGrind

 

 

Do you plan to grow old gracefully, or disgracefully?
Ha! Well, let’s see, I still go skateboarding at age 45, and a few years ago, got my motorcycle license and started riding off road and on the street. I don’t know if I’ll go out, as Doug hopes to: “worn down like the nub of a pencil”, but I hope to live it up as long as I can, and not complain about feeling old. I took my boy to see AC/DC earlier this year, and watching those 60-70 year old dudes rocking extremely hard for two hours without showing an iota of tiredness — that moved me. If Angus Young can do it, I can do it!

 

If you were a classic car…. what would you be?
I’d be my zippy little 1974 Yamaha RD60 café-racer-style motorcycle, in metallic turquoise with racing stripes.

Who is your inspiration/muse?
I have so many, from artists and designers such as Tasha Tudor, Botticelli, Josef Frank, Mary Engelbreit, Susie Cooper, Redouté, Lulu Guinness, and writers/thinkers such as Henry David Thoreau, Anais Nin, and Wayne Dyer. Gardeners and plant hybridizers inspire me. Doug’s zest for life inspires me. But it all begins with my mother, Susan. She was and is my muse. She instilled so much encouragement, love, and genuine care for us, not to mention keen interest in art, gardening, decorating, collecting. I am into all of those things because of her opening our minds to exploration. My mom’s mantra was “act enthusiastic and you’ll be enthusiastic!” Boy, was she ever that. I miss her more than words can say, she passed away in February from breast cancer. She ruled so hard.

I painted this image of my mom for a magazine article

SusanSmith_portraitbyMarcellaSpanogleHawley

 

 

and a link to my blog post about my mom, if you are so inclined:
http://powerpoppy.blogspot.com/2016/02/in-memory-of-susan-h-smith-mama-susan.html

 

 

 

 


What’s your guilty pleasure?

Sharing a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc with the love of my life, Doug, drinking from supercool handblown glasses by Missouri artist, Kaeka Maehata (http://www.kaekomaehata.com/Home.html), sitting in bed watching The Unbreakable Kimmie Schmidt on Netflix.

What job did you have BEFORE you started drawing/designing for a living?
I worked as a hostess and a server at the Olive Garden in college. Hospitalino y’all. (Of course I found a way to commandeer the chalk board and hand-lettered the welcome sign and today’s specials!)

If you could hang out with ANYONE in the world ….  who would it be?….and what is the one question you would want to ask them?

Oh man. I would have to say zenmaster Thich Naht Hanh. I don’t have anything I could even ask, I would just bask in his calm presence, his peaceful knowing, his smile. He is the wisest person alive in my opinion.

MarcellaHawley_herbtags

 

 

 

What’s your favorite hobby when you want to relax?
Gardening, cooking for pleasure, reading decorating magazines. I find it challenging to really let down, so relaxing for me often involves still doing something.

 

 

 

 

What was your favorite subject in school?
It usually wasn’t the subject as much as the teacher who inspired me to enjoy the material. As such, I had a great experience in Trigonometry and Analytic Geometry, even though I don’t “like” math. The inspiring teacher was key! Am fascinated by history, but had several snorefest teachers along the way that made it brutal to sit through. I’m curious about English and Literature, History, Philosophy, Religions … anything in the Art & Design Studio, especially Typography, and all areas of Art & Design History

Who was your first celebrity crush…and have you drawn them?
I would draw all of the boys I had a crush on, celebrity or not, from Maxwell Caulfield, the star of Grease 2, to a huge watercolor of Martin Gore from Depeche Mode that I used in my portfolio to get into the Fine Arts program. In fact, I still like to draw cute boys.

If you weren’t doing what you are doing now…. what job would you have?
I wrestle with that one. On one hand, I can see going to get an MBA. I’m fascinated with strategy and creating a message, and I would love to know more about the business side of things. I also love being involved in branding and design and being a part of big ideas, but at this phase of life with young children, I do not want to get so caught up in something that I can’t be there to pick them up from school and go to their ballgames, and just enjoy each moment of life before they go off to college. Then again, there are days when the idea of running away to a little cabin and pulling a Thoreau seems quite lovely. “Launch yourself on every wave!”

Would you go cave diving with sharks?
That comment above about launching yourself on every wave… I would not do that if there were sharks involved.

 

MarcellaHawley_EverythingsRosyProcess

 

How long does the average design/art work take from concept to final product?
I take forever, and work very intensely on every step. Doug came up with a tagline for me, “Marcy: Making things more complicated than they need to be, since 1971.” It’s really true. We start with a concept for a stamp set, and I’ll roll it around in my mind and research it, discuss it with my trusted advisor, Julie, who will also do research and develop ideas, and sometimes I’ll run it past our brilliant design team members to get their feedback. I’ll go through heaps of magazines and books and read up, I’ll work on sketches, I’ll revise my concept. I’ll go work in the garden, be struck by a flower, and I’ll go in a new direction, then I’ll come back and rework, or start over completely. Eventually – weeks later, maybe months – the “THAT’S IT!” feeling hits me, and I get in my zone and finish up my drawings, take them into ink, scan, run through fine-tuning in Photoshop, search for the perfect fonts or create lettering myself, and send out to our wonderful manufacturers. They turn things around for us very quickly most of the time, and are very patient with my last-minute requests. So, to answer your question, it varies, but it’s a wild ride from start to finish. 🙂

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