Delightfully Fun Paper Puppets by Sara Guindon

Sara Guindon

Did you ever play with paper dolls? I did when I was younger, and so I was instantly attracted to Sara Guindon’s delight­ful paper toys. They fea­ture char­ac­ters dressed to the nines who do things like play gui­tar, look through their binoc­u­lars, and draw in their sketch­books. Fun!

Each pup­pet is hand­made and printed on acid-free card stock. Their move­able joints are secured by brads and are able to move up and down. Some are avail­able for pur­chase on Sara’s Etsy shop.

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Digitally Embroidered Celebrity Portraits by Ashlee Woo

ashlee woo

David Bowie

Ash­lee Woo cre­ates por­traits of celebri­ties, artists, and polit­i­cal lead­ers using a com­bi­na­tion of dig­i­tal embroi­dery and silk screen. The abstract images fea­ture thick stitched lines that define the large, bold shapes of the sub­ject. Smaller, more expres­sive embroi­dery adds fun details like crazy hair styles and del­i­cate facial fea­tures. This com­bi­na­tion pro­duces unique pro­files that cap­ture both a like­ness as well as an essence of their per­son­al­ity. Love!

H/T @sbuzelli

ashlee woo

Kim Jong En

ashlee woo

Keith Har­ring

Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol

Mick Jagger

Mick Jag­ger

Salvador Dali

Sal­vador Dali

Grace Kelly

Grace Kelly



My Illustrated Product Obsessions of This Week


I’m try­ing a new seg­ment on Brown Paper Bag where I list the illus­trated prod­ucts I’ve lusted over the past week.  I always try to buy things that have illus­tra­tion on them (or an illus­tra­tive qual­ity to them) because I find that it makes me hap­pier. And, we have choices when we pur­chase things, so why the heck not?

Above: Straw­berry bowl by Jor­dan Sondler

More obses­sions:

Chif­fon scarf by Aimee Bee Brooks / Brass fly studs (ear­rings) by Dat­ter Indus­tries / Empa­thy Cards by Emily McDow­ell (I also wrote about these on My Mod­ern Met) / Wooden Sriracha sauce bot­tle by Her­man Marie / Planty Tea Towel by Leah Dun­can / Small Octo­pus plush toy by BigStuffed / Heav­enly Hon­ey­comb blan­ket by Anna Back­lund / Poly­mer clay arc­tic fox by Vic­to­ria Lucy

What have you been obsess­ing over this week? Sub­mit a link via this form and I might fea­ture it on this post next Friday!


Rich Mythologies Foster Elegant Shapes by Marta Kubiczek


Pol­ish illus­tra­tor Marta Kubiczek com­bines soft tex­tures and dig­i­tal col­ors with a heavy empha­sis on shape design. Fig­ures, flow­ers, and ani­mals are often com­prised of one ele­gant form.

Sto­ry­telling is at the fore­front of Marta’s work. Often, her images are based on mytholo­gies and poems. It’s a rich basis for image cre­ation and gives her the oppor­tu­nity to incor­po­rate imagery that she might not have used otherwise.

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Imaginatively-Crafted Illustrations (+Zelda!) by Daniel Shaffer

Daniel Shaffer

I’ve only recently become acquainted with Daniel Shaffer’s illus­tra­tions, but I am sure glad that I did. His paint­ings are great. They’re lus­ciously col­ored, imag­i­na­tive, fun, and have a bit of geeky charm. (Zelda has made an appear­ance a cou­ple of times.)

Daniel says he’s a digital-freelance illus­tra­tor. For work­ing on the com­puter, he does a fan­tas­tic job at mak­ing his work feel like it’s hand painted. The dry brush­ing def­i­nitely gives it a vin­tage feel, and I’m reminded of Mary Blair — one of my favorite illustrators!

Pick up some of Daniel’s prints on INPRINT.

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Scurry Past These Gigantic Florals by Melissa Castrillon

Melissa Castrillon

This illus­tra­tion (above) by Melissa Cas­tril­lon is one that I’ve admired for a long time. I love the min­i­mal­ist use of color and all of the delight­ful things that are hid­den within the com­po­si­tion. It isn’t just about this big, castle-like house. There are small crea­tures romp­ing around the over­sized flow­ers and trees.

These busy land­scapes are a recur­ring theme in Melissa’s work. Below, you’ll see other similarly-colored com­po­si­tions and tiny lines. Much of it is screen printed with traces of off­set pig­ments visible

Some of these images are avail­able as prints in Melissa’s online shop. She also has ceram­ics for sale, too!

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Exquisitely Minimalist Embroideries by Miga de Pan

miga de pan

Miga de Pan is the label under which Buenos Aires-based crafter Adri­ana Tor­res cre­ates her work. Her exquis­ite and min­i­mal­ist pieces are a lovely com­bi­na­tion of tex­ture and line. Quiet scenes fea­tur­ing wood­land crea­tures, geo­met­ric shapes, and even archi­tec­ture are sewn onto natural-colored back­grounds. These images are inspired with the help of Adriana’s ded­i­ca­tion and for­mal train­ing in a num­ber of fields: archi­tec­ture, graphic Design, illus­tra­tion and gen­eral fine arts.

As some­one who embroi­ders for fun, I am lov­ing the vari­ety of stitches that Adri­ana uses. It adds keeps things visu­ally inter­est­ing. My eye doesn’t get bored look­ing at the same stitch over and over — instead, I find myself keenly exam­in­ing every part of her handiwork.

Fol­low Miga de Pan on Face­bookInsta­gram, and Pin­ter­est.

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How Did You Do That? ‘The Robot Factory’ App by Tinybop


You might recall the debut of How Did You Do That?, a series focused on how mak­ers cre­ate the things that we love. Nancy Liang kicked it off by shar­ing her GIF-making process. Now, I’m pleased to present some­thing totally dif­fer­ent - the mak­ing of an app! Brooklyn-based com­pany Tiny­bop just fin­ished their newest cre­ation called The Robot Fac­tory It’s an opened-ended build­ing app that lets kids make, test, and col­lect robots. How fun!

As with any app, there’s a lot of mov­ing parts. I spoke with three peo­ple involved in mak­ing The Robot Fac­tory hap­pen (although there were many oth­ers): Tiny­bop CEO Raul Gutier­rez came up with the con­cept; Owen Davey illus­trated the app; and Leah Feuer was the project man­ager. They all have tasks that were inte­gral to mak­ing the app hap­pen, and they’ll help give us some sense of how The Robot Fac­tory was created.

Com­ing up with the con­cept: Raul Gutierrez


Brown Paper Bag: What did you do before you founded Tinybop?

Raul Gutier­rez: I was work­ing in Hol­ly­wood on film and later in the startup world on the web, but always at the inter­sec­tion of art and tech.

BPB: After you had the ini­tial idea for The Robot Fac­tory, what was the first step towards mak­ing the project a reality?

RG: Prob­a­bly the orig­i­nal inspi­ra­tion for the app was an Apple ][ game called Pin­ball Con­struc­tion Set. I remem­ber think­ing back then, “Build­ing pin­ball machines is cool, but it would be so much cooler to build robots.” I was part of the first Star Wars gen­er­a­tion. All the kids back then thought that when we reached the 2000’s the world would be full of robots. Maybe this app is my small attempt to make that imag­ined future a lit­tle more real.

The first step in actu­ally start­ing the project was build­ing a com­pany and sur­round­ing myself with lots of smart cre­ative peo­ple.
Con­tinue read­ing

Vintage Film Stills Reimagined as Tiny Paintings by Ellen Surrey

ellen surrey

I enjoy a good flick, and so I was really excited to see that Ellen Sur­rey was paint­ing these small illus­tra­tions based on film stills. The title and year are labeled at the bot­tom of each piece. So, if any of these paint­ings intrigue you, I’d encour­age you to watch the movie! I’ve never heard of The Cat From Outer Space, but I know that I need to see it.

Ellen writes about this project, stat­ing:

I watch a lot of movies, espe­cially the clas­sic ones. Because I love the look of these movies so much I usu­ally take screen shots while I’m watch­ing. These screen shots make for great ref­er­ence but lately I feel as if I could be uti­liz­ing them so much more. Some­times I have a hard time decid­ing what to draw and paint when that cre­ative urge hits, so I thought I would start paint­ing my col­lec­tion of screen shots.

Each gouache paint­ing is small (3″ x 4″) and on piece of water­color paper. ellen surrey ellen surrey ellen-9 ellen-7 ellen-6 ellen-5 ellen-4 ellen-3 ellen-2 ellen-1