Adorably Fuzzy Llamas & Librarians by Cat Rabbit Plush

cat rabbitIf you are a reg­u­lar reader of this blog, then you’re prob­a­bly already famil­iar with the work of Cat Rab­bit. I’ve fea­tured a cou­ple of her plushes before, but I real­ize I’ve never ded­i­cated an entire post to them!

I trea­sured my stuff ani­mals as a kid. Even now, some­where in a stor­age unit in south­ern Utah, they are tucked away in plas­tic bins (wait­ing for me?). As an adult, I love look­ing at plush char­ac­ters, espe­cially ones with per­son­al­ity like these. The Melbourne-based tex­tile artist designs and hand­crafts each fig­ure, and they have wire in their limbs for posing.

Cat Rab­bit has a pop­u­lar shop on Etsy. But, if you’re look­ing to order one of her adorable cre­ations, you’ll have to wait. She’s tak­ing a break for the hol­i­days and will be back on Jan­u­ary 3!

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Everything Nice: Lucie Sheridan & Carrot Cupcakes

This tea towel is very well loved!

This tea towel is very well loved!

I’m back in the kitchen with the sec­ond install­ment of Every­thing Nice fea­tur­ing To Dry ForBeast in Show, and illus­tra­tor Lucie Sheri­dan. If you missed my inau­gural post, check it out here.

For this project, I chose 3 illus­tra­tors whose work I admired, and then I asked them what their favorite baked good was. Through­out the course of Every­thing Nice, I’ll make their sweet treat and show you how to do it, too. Plus, you’ll see their work in action.

When I emailed Lucie Sheri­dan about what her favorite baked good was, she gave me a list! It included Nigella’s Guin­ness choco­late cake. Although I am par­tial to choco­late, I ulti­mately decided on car­rot cup­cakes, and I am so glad I did. Cou­pled with cream cheese frost­ing, these things are deli­cious. My boyfriend and I skipped din­ner one night and only ate these cup­cakes, because you know, #adults.

I used Lucie’s Cock­apoo tea towel while bak­ing. It was extremely help­ful, not to men­tion super cute.

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Lucie’s tea towel design before all the bak­ing, wash­ing, and drying.

Lucie Sheridan

So, there are two recipes here. One for the car­rot cup­cakes and another for the frost­ing. Both don’t require a lot of active time — the most time con­sum­ing thing is grat­ing the car­rots, but even then it goes pretty quickly. I own a stand mixer, so if you have one, def­i­nitely use it.

And, one last thing. I for­got to buy cup­cake lin­ers. This was a fail on my part. Although I prop­erly greased the tin, it was nearly impos­si­ble to take the cup­cakes out with­out ruin­ing their bottoms.

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Take 5 Car­rot Cupcakes 

Active time: 30 min­utes | Total time: 1 hour
Makes 14 cup­cakes (I made 12)
Source: Food & Wine

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tea­spoons cinnamon
  • 1 tea­spoon bak­ing soda
  • 1/2 tea­spoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tea­spoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups finely shred­ded car­rots (from about 6 medium carrots)

1. Pre­heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahren­heit and line muf­fin tin with paper lin­ers. Grease the lin­ers with veg­etable oil.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the cin­na­mon, bak­ing soda, and salt.

3. In a large bowl, with the help of an elec­tric mixer, beat the eggs and canola oil. Alter­na­tively, if you have a stand mixer, mix ‘em in there. Grad­u­ally beat in the sugar and a medium-high speed until thick, about 3 min­utes. Add the vanilla.

4. Fold the dry ingre­di­ents into the sugar mix­ture using a rub­ber spat­ula. Once com­bined, fold in the carrots.

5. Spoon the bat­ter into the muf­fin tins and bake for 25 to 30 min­utes (mine took 25), until a tooth­pick inserted in the cen­ter comes out clean.

6. Let the tin cool slightly then trans­fer the cup­cakes to the freezer. This will make them eas­ier to frost.

7. Time to dec­o­rate! I used a pip­ing tool and then spread the frost­ing with an off-set spat­ula. But, a but­ter knife will also do the trick.

Lucie Sheridan Lucie Sheridan

Cream Cheese Frosting

Total time: 15 min­utes
Makes 1 1/2 cups
Source: Food & Wine

  • 4 table­spoons unsalted but­ter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 tea­spoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups con­fec­tion­ers’ sugar (8 ounces)

1. In the bowl of an elec­tric mixer, beat the but­ter with the cream cheese until smooth.

2. Add in the vanilla and con­fec­tion­ers’ sugar and beat at a high speed until fluffy.

Take a look at that fuzzy photobomb in the back.

Take a look at that fuzzy pho­to­bomb in the back.

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Heads up! To Dry For/Beast in Show pro­vided me with Lucie’s tea towel, but the words, pic­tures, and opin­ions are all my own.

A Lightbulb as a Tail: Ceramics by Il Sung Na

Il Sung Na

See that guy? I bought him at MICA’s Art Mar­ket this past week­end! Il Sung Na crafted these adorable crea­tures that have a prac­ti­cal pur­pose. They hold tea lights, light­bulbs, paint­brushes and more. I love the col­or­ing and the char­ac­ter design. Like, the light­bulb out of a figure’s butt? How amus­ing and clever!

I saw all of these guys on Insta­gram prior to vis­it­ing the Art Mar­ket. I was on a mis­sion to snag one for myself.

Il Sung Na ilsungna-1 ilsungna-2 ilsungna-4 ilsungna-3 ilsungna-5 ilsungna-6 ilsungna-7

Friday Roundup: Tattooed People, Illustrated

I’ve cer­tainly men­tioned this before, but I am a fan of tat­toos; and, I enjoy see­ing them etched into acharacter’s imag­i­nary skin. Think about it — in an illus­tra­tion, get­ting a inked doesn’t hurt. No one is going to look at you funny or judge you harshly. Total free­dom! Just like the week­end. See ya Mon­day, folks.

Taleen Keldjian’s Illustrations Inspired by Water

Taleen Keldjian

Water and a love for swim­ming are deeply rooted in illus­tra­tor Taleen Keld­jian’s work. The Los Angeles-based cre­ative often revolves her images around the liq­uid, and it yields char­ac­ters like a bizarre group of scuba divers, a boy at the edge of the pool, and a fish­er­man. Even when not depict­ing these types of sub­jects, all of her illus­tra­tions sub­scribe to a hand-made aes­thetic using gouache, acrylic ink, and col­ored pen­cils. (FYI — the above image is intaglio print­ing, though!).

Like Esmé Shapiro (fea­tured ear­lier this week), Taleen is also a recent grad­u­ate — this time, from Art Cen­ter in Pasadena, Cal­i­for­nia. I’m look­ing for­ward to watch­ing where her career takes her!

I am obsess­ing over the cir­cu­lar illus­tra­tions below. I wish they were but­tons or something!

Taleen Keldjian taleen-4taleen-6 Taleen Keldjian taleen-5 taleen-8 taleentaleen-12 taleen-10 taleen-9 taleen-11

You’ll Never Guess What Shauna Lynn Panczyszyn has Illustrated

 Shauna Lynn Panczyszyn

Illus­tra­tor Shauna Lynn Panczyszyn high­lights the things you don’t want to click on… but often do.  Her Click­Bait Project fea­tures the obnox­ious arti­cle titles that are like Sirens, call­ing our on atten­tion until we can’t ignore them any longer. You  know, the ones that make you ask, “who should be my sugar daddy?” Or, “how did I die in my past life?!” Shauna hand let­ters the head­lines that are huge time sucks (and totally not worth it).

I’m both amused by the con­cept and enjoy her let­ter­ing and illus­tra­tive abil­i­ties. Plus, this project is a great exer­cise in improv­ing her skills. In addi­tion to the illus­tra­tions, Shauna also links to the arti­cles… if you’re curious…

As Christ­mas rapidly approaches, Shauna is also illus­trat­ing 12 Pat­terns of Christ­mas, which is a play on the old song 12 Days of Christ­mas.

(Via Quip­solo­gies)

Shauna Lynn Panczyszyn clickbait-3 clickbait-4 clickbait-5 clickbait-6 clickbait-7 clickbait-8

Strange, But Sweet: Illustrations by Esmé Shapiro

Esmé Shapiro

Esmé Shapiro is a Brooklyn-based illus­tra­tor who recently grad­u­ated from the Rhode Island School of Design.  Her col­or­ful works are a com­bi­na­tion of tight draw­ing and free-flowing pig­ment, with some strange char­ac­ters sprin­kled in her com­po­si­tions. A giraffe with four(?) eyes, a cat island, and plenty of naked buns are seen through­out. My favorite illus­tra­tions fea­ture her lush veg­e­ta­tion (which is like, all of them).

Esmé has an Etsy shop, and she recently started a mural busi­ness, too. Neat!

Esmé Shapiro Esmé Shapiro8 esme7 esme6 esme5 esme4 esme3esme9

10 Books for the Illustration Lover on Your Gift List

1. The Who the What and the When by Julia Roth­man, Jenny Volvovski and Matt Lamothethewho-book

It’s prob­a­bly time you started your hol­i­day shop­ping (I’m writ­ing this as a reminder to myself…), and if you have an illustration-lover on your list, I’ve put together a short list of sug­ges­tions. Some books were recently released while oth­ers have been out for some time. I’ve included infor­ma­tive draw­ings, inspir­ing tales, graphic nov­els, and even a children’s book! So, this short list runs the gamut.

Do you have an illustration(ish) book you’re pin­ing over? Or, one you love? Let me know on Twit­ter or Face­book!

thewho-book2

2. Fifty Years of Illus­tra­tion by Lawrence Zee­gen and Car­o­line Roberts
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3. Play­ing with Sketches by Whit­ney Sherman

4. Col­lage: Con­tem­po­rary Artists Hunt and Gather, Cut and Paste, Mash Up and Trans­form by Danielle Krysa (AKA The Jeal­ous Cura­tor)
Collage-1
Collage-2

5. 120 Ways to Annoy Your Mother (And Influ­ence Peo­ple) by Ana Benaroya
120-ways
120-ways-2

6. Nobrow Issue No. 9 (a dou­ble issue!)
Sadly, this is out of stock on their web­site, but you can prob­a­bly find it at your favorite inde­pen­dant book­store!
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7. Draw­ing is Magic by John Hen­drix
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8. This One Sum­mer by Mariko Tamaki and Jil­lian Tamaki (illus­tra­tor)
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Cur­rently read­ing this one. Great so far!

9. Aste­r­ios Polyp by David Maz­zuc­chelli
asterios
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This is an old-y, but a good-y. Absolutely one of my favorite (if not my favorite!) graphic nov­els; it’s a poignant, beautifully-drawn, and multi-facted story. Excuse me while I go and read it for the umpeenth time.

10. Ah-Ha to Zig-Zag: 31 Objects from Cooper Hewitt, Smith­son­ian Design Museum by Maira Kalman
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Friday Roundup: 10 Illustrative Calendars to Buy

1. Mr. Pike: The Great Gen­tle­man Cal­en­dar
Mr. Pike

The last cou­ple of months of the year are all about count­downs; the time left until Black Friday/Cyber Mon­day, hol­i­days, and of, course the new year. Time is tick­ing for you to buy a 2015 cal­en­dar. But luck­ily, there are ton of awe­some ones out there! Here are 10 illus­tra­tive cal­en­dars for your desk, wall, or even your kitchen!

Mr. Pike

2. Paper Pusher
Paper Pusher

3. 1canoe2
1canoe2

4. Gin­giber: Cat Desk Cal­en­dar
Gingiber
Gingiber

5. red­cruiser: Beer/Food Cal­en­dar
beer-food beer-food2

6. Anthro­polo­gie: Vikki Chu
vikki vikki2

7. Press­bound: Let­ter­press Desk Cal­en­dar
pressbound1 pressbound2

8. Frankie Cal­en­dar
frankie frankie2

9. Akiko da Silva: Daruma Dolls Cal­en­dar
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10. Laura Berger: Honor Your Jour­ney Cal­en­dar
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Boyoun Kim’s Visually-Enticing Illustrations

Boyoun Kim

File the above illus­tra­tion under “things I want to eat.” I live across the street from a Dunkin Donuts, and it takes all my willpower not to buy a sour cream donut from there every morn­ing! Great job, Boy­oun Kim, for mak­ing these treats look so appealing.

In addi­tion to food, Boy­oun has cre­ated edi­to­r­ial images for a num­ber of esteemed clients like Planspon­sor mag­a­zine, The New Yorker, The Wash­ing­ton Post, and more. Although her work is first and fore­most meant for these pub­li­ca­tions, the illus­tra­tions stand alone as screen prints that you’d hang on your wall.

Boyoun Kim moveforward_800 EAT003_800 chickenland_800 Bkim_challenges_final_RGB_800 bicycle_800 Age_800