Illustrated products

Trade Your Ordinary Desk Lamp for the Leafy Green Glow of a Plant Lamp

Plant lamps by Mar de Fe

You know when you see some­thing you want and can’t stop think­ing about it? That’s how I feel about the­se plant lamps by Mar­i­ana Fol­berg. Since I first wrote about them on My Mod­ern Met, I’ve been dream­ing about hav­ing one of the­se pot­ted lights in my stu­dio space. Inspired by botany, Mar­i­ana has formed translu­cent green acrylic into the shapes of leaves. Their intri­cate engraved veins are what illu­mi­nate your space with the soft glow.

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1 Year of Stitches, Embroidery

1 Year of Stitches Recap | 10 Embroideries from February

1 year of stitches, Sara Barnes

I know it’s so cliche, but time real­ly has been fly­ing with the 1 Year of Stitch­es project. Mon­th two is now a wrap! (Won­der­ing what I’m talk­ing about? Read more here.) As I look in the Face­book group and on the Insta­gram hash­tag, I’m blown away by all of the amaz­ing embroi­dery that’s in the works. Some folks have tak­en a fig­u­ra­tive approach to their hoop and embroi­dered small sce­nes, while oth­ers cre­ate abstract com­po­si­tions with thread.

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Sketchbooks

A Colorful Collage Sketchbook is a Modern-Day Homage to Matisse

Julie Hamilton collage sketchbook

For those who exer­cise, you (prob­a­bly) go through a warm up before you start on your work­out. This activ­i­ty tran­scends phys­i­cal activ­i­ty, how­ev­er, and extends to men­tal ones  as well. A sketch­book is the per­fect place to get ~ready~ to illus­trate and try out new tech­niques. Julie Hamil­ton does just this with her col­lage sketch­book. Under the hash­tag #sketch­book_s­tud­ies, she cuts out paper of dif­fer­ent col­ors and shapes, arrang­ing them into var­i­ous com­bi­na­tions that range from fig­u­ra­tive to abstract. In each col­lage, Julie’s trusty pair of scis­sors is her paint­brush—just like Matis­se—which gives her images a bold, angu­lar appear­ance.

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Embroidery

Contemporary Hoop Art of People, Plants, and Beautiful Interior Spaces

Sarah K. Benning embroidery hoop art

It seems forever ago when I first fea­tured the embroi­dery hoop art of Sarah K. Ben­ning (it was 2015!). Since then, the nomadic con­tem­po­rary embroi­der­er has cre­at­ed a myr­i­ad of oth­er works, all of which revolve around peo­ple, plants, and inte­ri­ors. She’s also host­ed work­shops and par­tic­i­pat­ed in gallery shows, in addi­tion to cre­at­ing a pop­u­lar pat­tern pro­gram; known as #SKBDIY, each mon­th she intro­duces a new DIY pat­tern that’s avail­able on Etsy.

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Illustrated products

Folk Art-Adorned Animal Totems Offer Double Good Luck

Animal totems by Emily Rose Thomson

I’ve talked before my love for illus­trat­ed ani­mal totems. I think, par­tial­ly, it comes from a child­hood fas­ci­na­tion I had with my mom’s minia­tures that she kept dis­played old print­er draw­ers. Through her online shops, Emi­ly Rose Thom­son crafts sim­i­lar­ly tiny crea­tures you can hold in the palm of your hand. Sloths, camels, fox­es, and more are hand-sculpt­ed and adorned with repeat­ing pat­terns and my favorite—tiny pil­lows and oth­er col­or­ful packs.

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Illustration History

#TBT | Mary Blair Adds a “Golden” Touch to Children’s Books of the 1950s

Mary blair concept art disney

You know how there’s the hash­tag #TBT? (If you’re not in the know, it means Throw Back Thurs­day.) Any­ways, it’s basi­cal­ly an excuse to post vin­tage pho­tos and oth­er things from long ago. I’ve always enjoyed it, but nev­er par­tic­i­pat­ed… until now. I thought it’d be fun to take a look back at illus­tra­tions from the past cen­tu­ry, with a speci­fic focus on wom­en illus­tra­tors. First up is my all-time favorite, Mary Blair.

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Illustration

Intriguing Landscape Illustrations Explore Our Planet… and Beyond

Landscape illustration by Maggie Chiang

Mag­gie Chi­ang (pre­vi­ous­ly) remains as one of my favorite con­tem­po­rary illus­tra­tors. Her work is tech­ni­cal­ly beau­ti­ful and con­cep­tu­al­ly intriguing—particularly when she delves into sprawl­ing land­scape illus­tra­tion. The abstract hori­zons leave much to the imag­i­na­tion as fig­ures con­tem­plate what’s ahead. The­se spaces, no mat­ter desert or forest, per­me­ate her imagery—even when it comes to por­trai­ture. This ded­i­ca­tion to spaces both near and far play into Maggie’s larg­er ideas of her work.

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Embroidery

Embroideries of Fowl-Mouthed Birds and Victorian Shadow Puppets

Embroidery hoop art by Kate Appleby

Inspired by flo­ra, fau­na, and Vic­to­ri­an shad­ow pup­pets, Kate Apple­by cre­ates delight­ful hoop art that com­bi­nes a vari­ety of stitch­ing tech­niques. From the basic back­stitch to French knots, she illus­trates birds with fowl mouths (pun intend­ed) and hands with sprawl­ing leaf tat­toos. The embroi­dery airs towards the side of min­i­mal­ism, but Kate has an excel­lent sense of com­po­si­tion and bal­ance that’s informed by her back ground in graph­ic design.

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Illustrated products

Colorful Illustrated Clothing that Celebrates the Joys of Sunshine

Illustrated clothing by Doops Design

I’ve got a quick note of house-keep­ing: I’m phas­ing out my 7 illus­trat­ed pro­duct obses­sions. You’ll prob­a­bly see them every so often in the future, but now I’m going to ded­i­cate Fri­days to indi­vid­u­al shops. It’ll still be an illus­trat­ed pro­duct-relat­ed day, just with more laser focus.

That being said, hap­py Fri­day! Doops Design is one of my favorite illus­trat­ed cloth­ing shops. I love the bright col­ors, kooky cac­ti, and oth­er bold imagery on the shirts, dress­es, and tank tops.

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Paper Craft

Exquisite Cut Paper Shadowbox Pays Homage to Lovely Forest Leaves

Colorful paper craft by Chao Zou

The inspi­ra­tion for Chao Zou’s paper craft project Forest Smell is aro­ma. “My wife sprayed her­self with my per­fume,” he explains, “who [wore] the [smell] of the forest for all day…” Motif of leaves were his start­ing point, and Chao lay­ered a vari­ety of plants with­in the sil­hou­et­te of a wom­an. Alone, it’s a com­pelling image that has an exquis­ite shad­ow box effect. Once you know the short back­sto­ry, how­ev­er, it’s a unique love let­ter.

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