It's hard to believe that 2018 has already whizzed by and here we are in 2019! The rest of the year was a whirlwind of change, challenges, and fun in our house.
|Alley Art Festival - Aurora, IL|
I decided to get out of the studio and into the public by trying my first series of artisan markets and events. I really enjoyed chatting with customers about my work and getting feedback. It was fascinating to see what people were drawn to and what they wanted to see. I don’t think I could have gotten such great insight to my clients in any other way.
During the summer, I participated in the Batavia Artisan Collective and The Alley Art Festival. Being in an outdoor venue is not without its challenges (wind, rain, extreme heat!) but each show my booth grew and changed. I loved figuring out the best way to feature my work. These shows were so much fun I continued throughout the fall and winter, partaking in The Heritage Prairie Artisan and Food Fair in Elburn, and an Artisan Holiday Pop-up Shop during the First Fridays Cocoa Crawl in Aurora.
|Making Art in Kindergarten|
We also had quite a big life change in our household with my little “big” girl going off to full time kindergarten this year! It was a big change for all of us starting the day earlier and getting home much later. She is learning and growing and turning into quite the little artist herself. This also has given me the opportunity to devote more time to my work, and myself!
|All the Dogs I've Loved Before|
With my new found time I decided to get back to my roots and make a dent in my sketchbook. After my experience in the spring doing The Sketchbook Project, I realized the importance of this type of practice. So this fall I took on some online challenges that really made me excited to draw again. In September, I participated in the 1” x 1” daily drawing challenged presented by The House of Illustration. This was based on a drawing practice by the artist and illustrator, John Vernon Lloyd, who drew 1” pictures every day for a year. It was the perfect opportunity for me to shake the creative dust off! Within the theme of this challenge, I decided make my own objective to draw 30 dogs in 30 days. However, they couldn’t be just any dog – I wanted them to be dogs I knew personally. It was so much fun to travel down memory lane and remember all the wonderful pups I’ve had in my life! They are such wonderful and inspirational animals. Check out the 30 dogs in 30 Days Album and hear more about my process on my FB videopost.
After this completing challenge, I probably should have taken a break, but Inktober was right around the corner! I have been hearing about Inktober for years and I was so excited I finally had the opportunity to partake in this global drawing challenge. Unlike the House of Illustration challenge, this one is much more flexible allowing you to pick and choose how much you’d like to do and when you would like to do it. I decided to try to work every other day, and sometimes I would combine themes. The added challenge of working in ink was so much fun and really bumped my drawing practice up a notch. Check out all the pieces in my Inktober Album – I can’t wait to do it next year!
|Find on ETSY|
In addition to participating in art fairs and drawing challenges I also created two new pieces for Keller Kiddo Designs. In my Jungle Fun Collection, I created a fun an whimsical Hippo piece featuring a sweet and cuddly moment. The Starry Night collection got the addition of a long awaited and requested adorable little Fox cub playing with fireflies. Living on the Fox River, I have heard many people asking for a Fox… well here he is!
|Find on ETSY|
To round out 2018, I was thrilled to be contacted by Voyage Chicago in order to do an article about myself and my work! It was so exciting to be featured in this local online magazine that supports small business and creatives such as myself.
It has been a busy and fulfilling year – and not without it’s challenges including a growing girl, a rambunctious puppy, and drastic schedule changes – but it has also been quite full. I look forward to 2019 and all of the inspiration that comes with it.