Black-Cat-A-Day: A Sketchbook Project by Stephanie Birdsong

stephanie-birdsong6Last week, I shared some of my favorites from Ink­to­ber, a month-long art chal­lenge where you draw every­day. In a sim­i­lar vein, Los Angeles-based illus­tra­tor Stephanie Bird­song has her own daily project called Black-cat-a-day. It’s a sketch­book paint­ing chal­lenge where, for all of Octo­ber, she depicts a dif­fer­ent black cat in her Moleskine.

I’m always envi­ous of peo­ple that keep amaz­ing sketch­books, where each page is a work of art. Stephanie is one of those illus­tra­tors, and it’s awe­some to see how the series has pro­gressed. Here are some of my favorites, but you can see more on her blog.
Stephanie BirdsongStephanie Birdsong
Stephanie Birdsong




Illustrated products

My Weekly 7 Illustrated Product Obsessions


1. Fly­ing Wiener Dog with Rain­bow Wooden Brooch by Danadamki
2. Cat Ring Dishes by Bolden
3. Happy Flo­ral socks by Woven Pear
4. Dala Horse Nap­kin Holder by Design Ate­lier Arti­cle
5. Ceramic Cac­tus by Vishnevsky’s Socks (H/T Gems)
6. 2016 Cal­en­dar by Papio Press
7. Swan Brooch by Lou Tay­lor, sold at Howkapow

As I say every Fri­day, happy week­end! With Hal­loween fast approach­ing, I’m going to spend some time get­ting my cos­tume together. This adorable children’s cos­tume is my inspiration:


I bought all of the felt I’ll need and found help­ful flower tuto­ri­als… so now it’s just form­ing all of the blooms and attach­ing them to a green hood. Hope­fully it’ll look as good as that kid’s costume.


Lara Hawthorne’s Elegant Animals Roam Folk-Inspired Landscapes

Lara Hawthorne

Lara Hawthorne is a Bristol-based illus­tra­tor whose metic­u­lous com­po­si­tions are pep­pered with crea­tures both large and small. Because of this, they’re worth spend­ing some time with, because oth­er­wise, you might miss her tiny alli­ga­tors, giant cats, and mas­sive schools of fish. In addi­tion to an elegantly-painted cast of char­ac­ters, Lara uses a lot of pat­tern­ing in her work. When she’s not depict­ing ani­mals and amphib­ians, she’s cre­at­ing motifs of trees and plants.

Lara has made selected works avail­able for pur­chase through her online shop.

Lara Hawthorne

Lara Hawthorne







And… snakes!


Paper Craft

Hanna Nyman Arranges Beautiful Paper Blooms into Eye-Pleasing Compositions

Hanna Nyman

I have always loved flow­ers,” Hanna Nyman said on Insta­gram. “My grand­mother was a florist and I remem­ber vis­it­ing her in the flower shop as a child sit­ting on the counter just tak­ing all the beauty and scent in!” This long-held ado­ra­tion is the focus of her col­or­ful work, which revolves around cut-paper blooms, crafted from solid col­ored paper and pages of text. She arranges them into aesthetically-pleasing com­po­si­tions, some­times adding a bird or but­ter­fly in the mix.

There’s a lot more to see on her @backtopoetry Insta­gram, where nearly all of her feed is beau­ti­ful cut paper pieces. It’s a must-follow! (via All Things Paper)

Hanna Nyman










Meticulously Embroidered Houseplants by Sarah K. Benning

Sarah K. Benning

Sarah K. Ben­ning is a con­tem­po­rary crafts-lady who fills wooden hoops with meticulously-stitched ferns, cacti, and other pot­ted house­plants. As a fel­low plant embroi­derer, I absolutely love these—they’re lit­tle vignettes of every­day life, cre­ated with the time-honored tra­di­tion of stitch­ing. They’re a nice com­ple­ment to artist Anna Valdez’s paint­ings of inte­rior spaces, don’t you think?

Sarah has an Etsy shop where you can buy her embroi­dered beau­ties. And Lon­don­ers, she’ll also be at Rene­gade Craft Fair in Lon­don next month!











Drawing, Illustrator

11 Highlights from Inktober 2015 (So Far)

Every year, the Ink­to­ber (#ink­to­ber) project encour­ages artists and illus­tra­tors around the world to draw some­thing every­day for the whole month of Octo­ber. It’s a fun exer­cise that can inform later work, which is the whole idea behind the project. The cre­ator, Jake Parker, writes, “You can do it daily, or go the half-marathon route and post every other day, or just do the 5K and post once a week. What ever you decide, just be con­sis­tent with it. INK­to­ber is about grow­ing and improv­ing and form­ing pos­i­tive habits, so the more you’re con­sis­tent the better.”

So, I know that we’re only halfway(+) through Octo­ber, but here are some of my favorite illus­tra­tions I’ve seen so far. You can find them with the hash­tag #ink­to­ber on Twit­ter, Insta­gram, Tum­blr, and Behance.

And: Check out 17 of my favorites from Ink­to­ber 2014!

Illustrated products

My Weekly 7 Illustrated Product Obsessions


1. Owl Mask (print­able pat­tern) by Win­ter­croft (any­one need a Hal­loween cos­tume?)
2. Black Flo­ral Stock­ings by Strath­cona Stock­ings
3. Plant Patch by The Scout Project
4. Green Leopoard Square Tray, illus­tra­tion by Way­lande Gre­gory
5. Flower Pin by Kris Mukai for Big Bud Press
6. Cat Pot by Gail­C­Ce­ram­ics
7. Black Vam­pire Bowl by Bar­run­tando (per­fect for Hal­loween candy!)

This week, I came across Beech Hall, a mul­ti­dis­ci­pli­nary artist col­lec­tive founded by Bev Beaulieu, Wade Keller and Danielle Kroll. They have an awe­some online shop with some beau­ti­ful illus­trated prod­ucts. This Goose Trin­ket Tray is one of my favorites, and they also fea­ture  jew­elry, bags, and other acces­sories. Check ‘em out!





Illustrators with Ink

Illustrators with Ink: Jessica Roux


Illus­tra­tors with Ink is back! After months of radio silence, Jes­sica Roux is here to share her gor­geous tat­toos and illus­tra­tions. She’s an ani­mal and plant enthu­si­ast (which you’ll see shortly) who’s orig­i­nally from the wood­lands of North Car­olina, where she grew up sur­rounded by an abun­dance of nature. Now, Jes­sica is in Brook­lyn, New York, where her clients include The New York Times, Smith­son­ian Mag­a­zine, Gar­den & Gun Mag­a­zine, Anthol­ogy Mag­a­zine, and many more. Read my inter­view with her below!


How many tat­toos do you have? 5

How old were you when you got your first tat­too? 19 — it’s the low­er­case Delta on my wrist. [See below!]


Did you design any your­self? If not, would you ever?
Nope! I try to find artists with a sim­i­lar but dif­fer­ent enough aes­thetic to my own work. I think I’d end up hat­ing some­thing I drew myself in a few years.

Do you have a favorite? If so, which one and why?
My favorite is the wild boar! She’s my most recent addi­tion. I got her right before one of the tough­est, sad­dest weeks of my life. She makes me feel strong and pow­er­ful, and wild boars are my favorite animals.

Where did you get your work done? 

Wild Boar — Sue Jeiven, East River Tat­too, Brook­lyn
Dog­woods — Rachel Hauer, East River Tat­too, Brook­lyn
Lau­rel — Magic Cobra Tat­too Soci­ety, Brook­lyn
Key — Ricky McGee, Anony­mous Tat­too, Savan­nah
Delta — Avail Tat­too, Savan­nah

Is there any mean­ing behind any of your tat­toos?
Some are just pretty things, and some go a lit­tle deeper. I got the dog­woods for my home state of North Car­olina. I got the key with my hus­band, who has a match­ing lock, a few months into dat­ing him. I love sappy love sto­ries, romance, and true love, but our cou­ples tat­toos prob­a­bly make most peo­ple gag. That’s okay though, because I think they’re sweet!



What sort of visual con­nec­tion do you see between your tat­toos and your illus­tra­tion, if any? 
My tat­toos are mostly flora and fauna, the same sub­ject mat­ter as the vast major­ity of my work. I find plants and ani­mals so inspir­ing that they’re a part of who I am through my tattoos.

Now that you’ve seen her tat­toos, check out these same sensibilities—such as sub­dued col­ors and rhyth­mic shapes—are imbued within her illustrations.


Lincoln's Funeral




Jes­sica describes her images as “old world beauty,” and I’d have to agree.

Thanks, Jes­sica!!


Artist, Painting

Keri Oldham’s ‘Labyrinth’: Fashion, Demons, and the Search Within Ouselves

Keri Oldham

Brooklyn-based artist Keri Old­ham has recently opened her lat­est solo exhi­bi­tion at Kirk Hop­per Fine Art in Dal­las, Texas. Enti­tled Labyrinth, her beau­ti­ful water­color paint­ings are an alle­gor­i­cal series that’s inspired by the 1980 cult-classic film, as well as the ancient myth of the Minotaur.

The gallery describes the work in Keri’s show as com­bin­ing “images of demons and war­riors with tragic fig­ures and vic­to­ri­ous ones. With armored women at its cen­ter, these pieces spin a new story on The­seus enter­ing the maze and con­fronting the beast within.” The allur­ing pieces fuse medieval beasts with fash­ion and fan­tasy, rep­re­sent­ing inner tur­moil and desires the many of us feel—to find mean­ing and suc­cess in our adult lives.

I love both the con­cept of Labyrinth and the style of Keri’s at-times grotesque paint­ings. They’re cre­ated with pig­ment, graphite, and applied paper pulp, adding these bril­liant tex­tures to her dizzy­ing col­ors and patterns.

If you’re in Dal­las, check out her exhi­bi­tion! It’s up until Novem­ber 14 of this year.

Keri Oldham







Illustrator, Painting

Meticulous Monochromatic Paintings by Kreh Mellick

Kreh Mellick

Kreh Mel­lick cre­ates gor­geous mono­chro­matic paint­ings that are allur­ing in their sheer amount of metic­u­lous detail. The tiny leaves, fac­ing all dif­fer­ent direc­tions, cre­ate a lus­cious move­ment through­out each piece and frame their curi­ous cast of char­ac­ters. I can’t help wondering—where are these peo­ple, and what is their story? They feel like they’re some­where but nowhere, like they’re occu­py­ing someone’s dream.

Kreh Mellick

Kreh Mellick



Out­side of that series, Kreh cre­ates pieces that are less scrupu­lous, but still have the same, dream-like qual­ity. Check out her Insta­gram for more! (Via Art Hound)