My Studio: Sketches for an Embroidery and Prints

My studio: Sketch for a new embroidery

I try to make it a habit to not spend my week­day evenings on the com­puter. Some­times, of course, it’s unavoid­able, but after a long day I just wanna draw or embroi­der. You might recall my lat­est embroi­dery of a flo­ral hand. Con­tin­u­ing on this theme, I’m work­ing on some sketches with new flowers.

Every­thing is drawn on trac­ing paper. I love its smooth sur­face and the fact that’s cheap to buy. In addi­tion, you can eas­ily layer images and see dif­fer­ent options for your draw­ings. It erases pretty well, if that’s your thing.

My studio: Sketch for a new embroidery

My studio: Sketch for a new embroidery

My studio: Sketch for a new embroidery

Don’t for­get, these prints by Erin Zin­gré are avail­able in the Brown Paper Bag shop. High qual­ity, 4″ x 6″ prints! I’m so happy with how they turned out.

Brown Paper Bag's Header Picture Project - Erin Zingré

Saturday Roundup by Píccolo: Illustrated Products We’ve Seen Lately and Liked

picture_party_final So… I was too busy on Thursday/Friday for a proper round up. Sat­ur­day it is, then! Let’s focus on illus­trated prod­ucts. Not just ones hat I’ve seen lately and liked, but ones that are selected by Píc­colo.

I’m one half of Píc­colo, the other being my pal Lisa. We love illus­trated prod­ucts and twice a week pro­duce Pic­ture Party on our blog,  where we fea­ture dif­fer­ent artists mak­ing illus­trated prod­ucts. So, here are some things we’ve seen lately and liked. Be sure to check out Pic­ture Party every Mon­day and Thursday.


Rifle Paper Co. Read our post about it here.

beetrootpress2 beetrootpress3

La Petite Jungle. Read our post about it here.

La Petite Jun­gle. Read our post about it here.

jamesward4 jamesward2

donnawilson donnawilson2

Have a great week­end! Be sure to fol­low Píccolo’s Pic­ture Party on Tum­blr and take a look at our  Etsy shop! We’re really jazzed about our tote bags.



Andre Levy’s “Tales You Lose” Paints “Adventure Time” on a Coin

andre levy

Coins are pretty neat look­ing, if you ask me; I love all of their lit­tle idio­syn­crasies. German-based designer Andre Levy has painted smat­ter­ing of cur­ren­cies in his series Tales You Lose (clever title!). He doesn’t just col­orize the por­traits already on coins, but paints fig­ures in pop­u­lar cul­ture on these small objects. More about his series:

We are con­stantly sur­rounded by pop fig­ures – in films, in music, comics, and even in gos­sip mag­a­zines. They are some­times our escape from real­ity, our fan­tasies. Coins por­tray some­thing oppo­site: the real, the everyday. 

​This project is about indi­vid­ual expres­sion in oppo­si­tion to mas­si­fied think­ing, about how our per­sonal pas­sions are more wor­thy than things that are imposed to us. The paint brings to the faces of kings and pres­i­dents bor­rowed nar­ra­tives from other famous char­ac­ters and unleash indi­vid­ual alter­na­tive stories.

Check out the Tales You Lose web­site for me. There are so many good coins on there!

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Jennifer Davis’ Surreal, Cotton-Candy-Colored Paintings

Jennifer Davis

Jen­nifer Davis is a Minnesota-based artist whose sur­real por­traits reflect a highly selec­tive color palette and sim­pli­fied way of draw­ing. I find them unusual and beau­ti­ful as they mix flora, ani­mals, and cre­ate hybrid creatures.

If you’re local to Min­neapo­lis, Min­nesota, Davis has a new show, Joyride, at Pub­lic Func­tionary until April 25th. The work included in the show is the result of a 8-cities-in-8-days road trip that Davis took in 2013 to research and doc­u­ment vin­tage Amer­ica carousels. Addi­tion­ally, it’s inspired by the ride’s iconic horses as well as clas­sic carousel vignette paint­ings. I’ve included a few images from the show, but check more out here. It looks incredible.

Jennifer Davis jennifer_davis3 jennifer_davis5 jennifer_davis8 jennifer_davis7 jennifer_davis6 jennifer_davis4

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Photo by Michael Johnson

Leah Goren, F/W 2014: Scarves Collection


It’s no secret that I love Leah Goren’s work (I included her ceram­ics in an exhi­bi­tion I curated ear­lier this year). So, of course, I really enjoyed see­ing the pre­view of her fall/winter 2014 col­lec­tion of scarves.

Avail­able to pre-order, these scarves will be ready for Sep­tem­ber 2014, per­fect as the weather becomes chilly. My favorite? The tiger scarf. These pieces com­bine Goren’s effortless-looking illus­tra­tive style with an equally free and easy garment.

More about the col­lec­tion here. All pho­tos by Amber Bryne Mahoney.

leah goren leah goren leah goren leah_reena_goren_amber_byrne_mahoney_020 leah_reena_goren_amber_byrne_mahoney_030 leah_reena_goren_amber_byrne_mahoney_029 leah_reena_goren_amber_byrne_mahoney_023 scarf-web-girls scarf-web-tigers scarf-web-picassocats scarf-web-blackcat scarf-web-redfloral

Header Picture Project: Featuring Erin Zingré!


Did ya’ll notice the awe­some new header at the top of the page? For the month of April, I’m so pleased to intro­duce Erin Zingré’s awe­some trashy hor­ror movie illus­tra­tion as part of the Header Pic­ture Project. Each month, I ask a new and tal­ented cre­ative to craft an image that revolves around the brown paper bag.


I absolutely love Erin’s work! As always, it’s avail­able in a full image as a petite 4″ x 6″ pic­ture print. Check it out in the Header Pic­ture Project store, where you can also pur­chase work by Perrin.

Below is a short inter­view I did with Erin. She pro­vided me with some in progress shots, which is always a treat to see.

Name: Erin Zin­gré
Loca­tion: Dal­las, TX
What was your dream job when you were 7 years old? When I was 7, my dream job was a total toss up; I always waf­fled between want­ing to be a car­toon­ist and an archae­ol­o­gist. On the one hand, I loved to spend evenings draw­ing car­toons of this weird crea­ture named George Elk. On the other hand, I loved learn­ing about ancient Greece and Egypt, and even spent a few weeks build­ing a life-sized paper replica of King Tut’s death mask with my dad. To an extent both of those inter­ests have def­i­nitely shaped where I ended up today. I still love mak­ing silly, car­toon­ish images, and fos­ter­ing knowl­edge about ancient civ­i­liza­tions and their mytholo­gies have def­i­nitely informed the char­ac­ter design I do today.
Your pro­fes­sion now: Cur­rently I’m a graphic designer at the best design firm evar, Trac­tor­beam. It’s such a fun place to work; has really diverse, chal­leng­ing projects; and the peo­ple there are so great. We also have an office Razor scooter circa 1997 on which we all have races around the office. So, ya know, can’t beat that.


What’s your favorite thing to draw? I def­i­nitely love draw­ing silly crea­tures the most. I tend to be pretty OCD is most facets of my life, so I find it really cathar­tic and excit­ing to lose myself draw­ing what­ever mon­sters spring forth as I’m sketch­ing and then imag­in­ing a nar­ra­tive around that par­tic­u­lar crea­ture.
What was the inspi­ra­tion for this piece? The inspi­ra­tion for this piece actu­ally came as I was doing the dishes a cou­ple weeks ago. As I was clean­ing the kitchen, I found a half-eaten bagged lunch that had been sit­ting on my counter for over a week… suf­fice to say, the half-eaten sand­wich had turned pretty gnarly. When you gave me the illus­tra­tion prompt “…And It Came from Inside of the Bag” the visual of that gross, half-eaten sand­wich imme­di­ately popped into my head. I started to imag­ine the sand­wich being the vil­lain in a trashy, B-horror movie.


How did you cre­ate your illus­tra­tion? Was it any dif­fer­ent than your reg­u­lar process? I started this illus­tra­tion by research­ing a lot of vin­tage, campy hor­ror movie posters. I wanted the illus­tra­tion to feel gritty and the col­ors to be really obnox­ious and abra­sive. I did a lot of ink sketches of gross sand­wich mon­sters (which was a total delight!) before land­ing at one that felt appro­pri­ately scary and a lil’ derpy. After scan­ning in my ink draw­ings, I start com­posit­ing and col­or­ing every­thing in Pho­to­shop. This process dif­fered slightly than some of my other illus­tra­tions, which start out as vec­tor illus­tra­tions that I then fine-tune in Photoshop.


The moldy sand­wich is great. How do you think he became pos­sessed? Haha thank you! I like to imag­ine that the hor­mones and preser­v­a­tives injected in the turkey meat fes­tered, caus­ing the sand­wich to become radioac­tive, mutat­ing into a sen­tient beast. Enraged and feel­ing aban­doned that he was the only food stuff not eaten for lunch, he seeks vengeance upon the per­son who left him to mold. Only when he is eaten will the sand­wich be at peace.
Do you enjoy watch­ing campy hor­ror films? If so, what’s your favorite? Yeah, I def­i­nitely enjoy a good campy hor­ror film. Rocky Hor­ror Pic­ture Show will prob­a­bly always be my favorite. As a young’n, I also really liked the movie The Man with Two Brains. “Get that cat out of here!”

Thanks Erin! Now, go buy her print!

Friday Roundup: Pineapples I’ve Seen Lately and Liked

Pineap­ples are my favorite fruit to eat, but are my least favorite to pre­pare to con­sume.  The sticky juice runs all over my counter, and that does not make me a happy camper. So, if you want my heart, all it takes is a pre-cut pineap­ple. Kid­ding! (Sorta.)

Any­ways, here’s my weekly round up. If haven’t already guessed, it’s pineap­ple themed! I per­son­ally own the pineap­ple pouch above. The rest of these things? I wish I did.

Have a lovely Fri­day and week­end! See ya’ll on Mon­day.


Vintage brass pineapple containers and mirror via The White Pepper Etsy

Vin­tage brass pineap­ple con­tain­ers via The White Pep­per Etsy


Tropical fruit and pineapple stockings by Strathcona Stockings

Trop­i­cal fruit and pineap­ple stock­ings by Strath­cona Stockings

Pineapple card by Katie Barrie

Pineap­ple card by Katie Bar­rie

Shabd Simon-Alexander's plant-filled apartment + pineapple. Via Design Sponge.

Shabd Simon-Alexander’s plant-filled apart­ment + pineap­ple. Via Design Sponge.

I've been pining over a bar cart FOREVER. Love this one, via Lattes and Lavender

I’ve been pin­ing over a bar cart FOREVER. Love this one, via Lattes and Lavender

Beccy Ridsdel’s “Surgically Altered” Ceramics

beccy ridsdel

Beccy Ridsdel’s ceramic sculp­tures are cut open to reveal sur­prises beneath their sur­face. Below the carefully-peeled lay­ers are busy flo­ral pat­terns that act as the lifeblood to Ridsdel’s plates and cups.

She com­pares her work to a sur­gi­cal exper­i­ment that’s in progress. The object is dis­sected, and what do we find? Craft through and through.

I love see­ing this hard, frag­ile object trans­formed into some­thing that looks mal­leable. Rids­del fools us into think we could eas­ily manip­u­late it on our own, which is a tes­ta­ment to the believ­ably of her sculp­tures. (Via Hi Fruc­tose)

beccy ridsdel beccy ridsdel IMG_38372 IMG_38422 IMG_38452 IMG_38472 IMG_38582

Rebecca Artemisa’s Colorful and Therapeutic Illustrations

Rebecca Artemisa
I wrote about Rebecca Artemisa’s work on My Mod­ern Met last week, and found it so delight­ful that I wanted to share it here. Aren’t all of her details divine? Ghosts! Can­dles! Snakes! Stars! So much. I love it, and espe­cially enjoy the sym­bol­ism that’s inher­ent in all of her images.

Artemisa’s work is col­or­ful and some­times cheery. Other times, though, it’s not. It’s filled with fear and sad­ness. Her paint­ings are a form of ther­apy for the men­tal stress that her chronic ill­ness causes her. In her words:

i am still always paint­ing. my paint­ings feel very dark to me but i think it is easy to some­times dis­miss them as sweet. some­times my paint­ings get a lit­tle sweet look­ing, maybe as a way to cope with how bad i can feel. this isn’t a sad thing to me though, quite the oppo­site. i’m glad i have some­thing good to pour myself into when i am stuck inside so often, it keeps my life and my abil­ity to be kind opened up.

Be sure to check out her shop!

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Elisa Strozyk’s Cozy-Looking Textiles Are Made of Wood

Elisa Strozyk

Elisa Strozyk’s work fools us. These pieces might look like cloth, they are actu­ally made out of wood. The light wooden pat­tern folds into itself and looks soft and cozy. But, I’m sure that if you were to fall onto this blan­ket, you wouldn’t have a warm greeting.

Strozyk explains the idea behind her work, writing:

Wooden Tex­tiles con­vey a new tac­tile expe­ri­ence. We are used to expe­ri­ence wood as a hard mate­r­ial; we know the feel­ing of walk­ing across wooden floors, to touch a wooden table­top or to feel the bark of a tree. But we usu­ally don’t expe­ri­ence a wooden sur­face which can be manip­u­lated by touch.

Wooden Tex­tiles is a mate­r­ial that is half wood-half tex­tile, between hard and soft, chal­leng­ing what can be expected from a mate­r­ial or cat­e­gory. It looks and smells famil­iar but feels strange, as it is able to move and form in unex­pected ways.

The processes to trans­form wood into a flex­i­ble wooden sur­face is its decon­struc­tion into pieces, which are then attached to a tex­tile base. Depend­ing on the geom­e­try and size of the tiles each design shows a dif­fer­ent behav­ior regard­ing flex­i­bil­ity and mobil­ity. There are var­i­ous pos­si­ble appli­ca­tions, for exam­ple as floor­ings, cur­tains, drapes, plaids, uphol­stery or parts of furniture.

I not only love this con­cept, but the design as well. It’s really sat­is­fy­ing to see all of these tri­an­gles, and they make Strozyk’s work look effort­less.  Elisa Strozyk Elisa Strozyk elisa_strozyk4 elisa_strozyk5 elisa_strozyk6 elisa_strozyk11 elisa_strozyk9 elisa_strozyk10 elisa_strozyk7 elisa_strozyk8 elisa_strozyk12