Hey! Nice to see you!
Here is a little mixed-media piece I just finished today and it is based on one of the pictures I took during my pastry photo shoot last week. Below I will be explaining a bit about the process I followed to get to this.
Here is the initial picture I took and on the right is what I actually used as I was painting. I used my handy-dandy Photoshop skills to clean it up so that my eyes didn't get distracted by the background. I also rotated the doughnut a tiny bit counterclockwise.
Once again, I used a gray water-soluble pencil to create this initial sketch. I like using water-soluble pencils because the lines completely disappear as I am doing the painting. However, a lot of artists like using straight up pencils. At this point, I try to get the proportions as close as possible to the reference picture, but I don't get super paranoid about it being identical to the picture. I also add in shapes that map out where the lightest and darkest values will be. For me, it is still a challenge to leave the lightest areas white since the beginning!
Here is what it looked like after about three layers of watercolor textures/values.
Here is the painting after about 5 layers of watercolor paints. After this I couldn't help myself and I took out my Soft-Core Prismacolor pencils and went in to add more textures/values until I was satisfied.
-Strathmore Cold Press Watercolor Paper Series 400
-Sakura Koi Pocket Field Watercolor Set
-Prismacolor Soft-Core Pencils
-Combination of Rodin and Artify paintbrushes
I just finished this watercolor piece today, which is meant to be the second part of my "Things I Eat Everyday" painting I did some months ago (here's the link to that post). This was fun and I worked on it on and off over the last 3 days. I am very big into health and usually eat pretty healthy.
It may be hard to believe, but I rarely eat things that I paint like fast food and sweets. In fact, this morning I went out to buy some sweet breads to photograph them for future reference images and, as difficult as it was, I saved them all for my husband to take to his friends later. Except a chocolate doughnut that I broke in half because I wanted to have a reference picture of a half-eaten doughnut (these make for challenging paintings!). That one I threw away.
Below are a couple of pictures I took during the process. I wanted to challenge myself and use only watercolors in this one. I helped myself with acrylic paint for final highlights in the first version.
This has been the first week of relative peace after finally settling into our new home and my painting studio/office is in a workable state for me, which is wonderful. I am in the process of establishing new work routines for myself, which I was in desperate need for after all that craziness, though I feel like my brain is in a state of denial because I'm finally enjoying my new home and all its new spaces. I really needed this. I am, however, making sure to make advances towards my goal of improvement and finding my style every-single-day.
Two days ago I started what is probably the biggest oil painting I have worked on so far. I decided to re-purpose an old painting that was going to be thrown out (not mine) by gesso-ing it and painting over it. I'm approaching it as an experimentation and will share the process with you later. :)
Thanks for reading!
It feels so good to finally get a chance to rest and work on my painting/drawing. Spring Break has officially started. I have a plan in order to improve my skills in the next 13 days:
Every day I will be working on pencil sketches in order to improve my drawing of anatomical elements of the human body. I really have to continue working on drawing the head in different angles, making poses more dynamic and feet/hands. I will be posting this type of sketchbook work on my Instagram as soon as I finish with them so click on the sidebar icon to follow me on there. :)
Aside from these, I will be working on a painting every day. Smaller paintings will be finished a lot faster than more complex ones. I plan to be working on two or more at the same time. If I have the time, I would love to do a small oil painting as well. Stay tuned!
I used a picture from Pixabay as reference for this painting. This site has been really useful for me in my quest towards improving my artwork! Highly recommended if you are looking for free reference images for drawings.
Hi guys! So... I'm not usually the type of person that likes to talk about my plans until they have become a bit more concrete. However, I am going through a strange phase at the moment that is unlike any other I have experienced so far and is likely the prelude to a new exciting chapter in my life. Hopefully, these transitory months of uncertainty (and a certain amount of anxiety!) will eventually bring me to a point at which I can finally start working toward a life of peace and happiness from doing what I love and living in a place where I feel like I belong.
My husband and I are applying to move to Canada (this means moving far away from all friends and family and the city that has been our home for most of our lives). It has been a process and will likely take months still, but I have decided to leave my current job at the end of this school year so that I can dedicate my time to art and developing an online presence. It was a hard decision. I really love teaching Art and hope to keep teaching Art in the future, but I am excited to be able to have time to improve and experiment and make a name for myself as an illustrator/artist. If you have visited before you probably already know that I have been doing my best to make time after my full-time job to keep drawing and painting. It has been hard and I am spreading myself thin as I am also very much committed to keeping a healthy lifestyle.
I have a lot of personal projects that I am currently doing a lot of research and investigation for as well. I want to open my Etsy shop and create my own YouTube channel soon. My Etsy shop will probably open sometime in the next couple of months and my YouTube channel is something that I will probably start as soon as the school year ends. I am so excited for what is to come!
Here is a bird for you, my friends! And I hope that you follow me throughout this journey!
In my last post I shared the process I went through in order to create the Vanilla Cat Lounge and Cafe logo. This personal project was a great opportunity for me to try incorporating original hand lettering design as well as some illustration work in both logo and menu. As you can see, I changed some of the the Pantones in the logo because I decided I wanted brighter colors to work with. This was a lot of fun!
Hi! Unfortunately it has been a while since I've had any time to do any actual design work. My time has revolved around teaching art and painting and improving myself in these areas whenever I have any free time. Between all this and making sure I'm looking after my health and wellbeing (this is really starting to become one of my priorities), my days are usually full.
Before leaving on Christmas break, I made a long list of the things I wanted to work on during this time. One of these things was working on personal design projects and incorporating illustration (which I feel I have done more of recently) into some type of collateral design. Sooo... after doing some brainstorming, I decided to create a logo for an imaginary cat lounge/coffeeshop. I started by dedicating some of my time to do research about these types of establishments and learning as much as I could about them. They are becoming more and more popular in the U.S., which I think is kind of awesome.
I wanted to share my process with you, starting from pencil sketches to finally vectorizing and refining the logo on my computer. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to create the font for the logo myself. I also wanted something different from the stuff I found online, making the cat elements a bit less obvious and in-your-face, while still maintaining a degree of playfulness and novelty.
Next, I am going to be working on a menu design which will incorporate my own original illustrations! I will be posting about that later.
Happy New Year! Have a great time celebrating!
Well hello there! Yesterday I went out to buy some small gifts for some coworkers who have helped me out a ton throughout the semester and decided to make my own watercolor "Thank You" cards. I think they turned out pretty cute, don't you think?
I started by covering a box with a couple of layers of paper mache. Because this box has an attached lid, I made sure not to cover the line that allows it to fold over. After finishing the paper mache, I let it dry over night.
After sketching a bunch of different ideas, I came up with a monster design that would complement the shape of the box and transferred it using a pencil. I then traced my lines carefully using a thin Sharpie.
I covered the box's folding line with a similar colored tape.
Ready to be filled with goodies! :)
There are only 2 weeks left before teacher preparation for next school year begins (OMG!). I am still working on my final portfolio for my Master program (which ended last month), but since I am done with all my classes I finally had a bit of time to dedicate to personal projects. I used this small break to set many goals for myself, in both personal and professional areas of my life. Because of this, I decided to create my own personalized planner to keep track of my progress throughout the year.
I saw/read SOOO many of videos and blog posts from others in order to get ideas for my planner. The whole thing was pretty fun to make and it will be super useful for me. I enjoyed it so much, I will probably be making more in the future. There are many websites from which you can buy monthly calendars and weekly templates, but I decided to make my own. If anyone is interested, the PDFs are below the pictures, which can be downloaded and printed out. I decided to make the design very simple because I plan on doing at least a certain amount of doodling and collaging in this planner.
To start off I found an old hardcover book and used an X-ACTO knife to carefully separate the pages from the cover. You have to run the blade down vertically, as straight as possible, and making sure not to damage the spine. Next I found an old blouse with a nice graphic that I was never going to use anymore. I cut out a large rectangle (the book cover has to have at least 1 inch of extra fabric all around it), ironed it, and used spray adhesive to glue it onto the book cover.
I then planned the sections I would be creating in my planner. This will vary from person to person, since we all have different organizing needs. I left only 3: Monthly Calendars, Weekly Plans and Important Notes. After deciding on my sections I got to work designing my monthly calendars, and my weekly spreads. I made sure to add areas to jot down monthly goals or notes about important events, as well as daily meals and exercising in my weekly planning section.
As you can see, I went for the easiest book binding method. I had a roll of thin rope in my basement which I thought would go well with the cover. I was a little worried at first that it wouldn't hold the pages properly, but the hard cover helps keep everything in place perfectly. :)
As a personal project, I decided to do a redesign for Kevala's Almond Butter products. I really like the product, but I really think their current image is really lacking good design. Here are some initial ideas which I am still working on.
I am going to be starting a new project with my Eighth graders soon that will involve designing and creating an Alebrije. Alebrijes are colorful Mexican sculptures of imaginary creatures, sometimes they are a unique representation of an already existing animal and sometimes they are wild combinations of several different animals in one. Some even combine human faces and elements with animal body parts.
We are going to be doing them the original way, using wire and paper mache. I can't wait to see their amazing creatures come to life! Since I always make my own example first, in order for me to try out the process personally and be able to explain to my students the best way to go about doing their projects, here is my initial sketch. I will be posting pictures of the final product later!
This summer I partnered with a Marketing specialist in order to create a pitch for Indio beer (Cuauhtemoc Moctezuma/Heineken). Indio beer is presently marketed towards young adults and sponsors concerts as well as other music festivals. The ideas we chose to present revolved around the creation of a fun character that would help make the brand memorable among individuals looking to connect with the beer brand they consume.
Following are character sketches and a couple of storyboards meant for T.V. ads.
So my Easter break has officially begun, which means that I have to take advantage of my off time from work and start with preparations for my students' end of semester projects and organizing the next Art Show. For my first graders, I decided to do a project which combined making homemade playdough and sculpting little monsters with it.
Of course, before actually doing this project, I had to find a good recipe which would a) Not leave the hands too dirty or oily, b) Could be put away easily, and c) Last as long as possible without drying and cracking once the final products are finished (I want the Monster Parade to look as awesome as possible at the Art Show).
I found different recipes and videos, but made my own modifications.
Ingredients: (this makes 1 batch of 1 color)
Packet of Cool Aid (or other COLORFUL powder beverage mixes)
1 Cup flour
2 Tablespoons Vegetable/Canola/Olive Oil
1/4 Cup salt
3 Tablespoons baking powder
1 Cup warm water
*If you want really vibrant colors, add drops of food coloring
1) In a saucepan mix flour, salt and baking powder. Add entire packet of Cool Aid and mix ingredients well.
2) Add warm water (I made sure to wait until the tap water was quite warm). Mix well.
3) Add oil. Mix well.
4) Using a low flame, heat while constantly mixing with spatula until a blob begins to form. :O
5) Leave heating for a minute or two longer.
6) Remove from saucepan and allow to cool.
7) Pretend you are a cat and knead thoroughly (*see .gif).
8) Store in individual zip-lock bags in refrigerator.
*If, for some reason, one batch comes out dryer/crumblier than another, add another tablespoon of oil and knead. I found this improved the texture greatly.
*If you want to change the color, or think the color is too muted, do not hesitate to add food coloring. This has to be done in between steps 3 and 4, before mixture starts to get thicker.
I love my beautiful blobs! :)
I wanted some fun classroom decorations for my younger students and made this at the beginning of the year using the regular paper mache technique.
-Regular sized balloon
-Kitchen paper towels
-Thin tracing paper
-Black permanent marker
-White liquid glue
-Transparent fishing line (for hanging purposes)
-Medium sized multipurpose brush
-Towel or newspaper to cover working surface
1. Blow up balloon to whatever size you want your bug to be.
2. In a container, mix 1 cup water and 1 cup glue (be prepared to make more every time it runs out).
3. Cut up paper towels into approximately 2 x 2 inch pieces. Completely cover balloon by placing piece by piece on its surface and wetting it completely using brush and glue mixture. Once balloon is completely covered with first layer, repeat at least 2 more times, making sure there are no thin areas of paper towel. Allow to dry overnight.
4. To make the eyes, make balls of crumpled up newspaper and tape them to the balloon wherever you want them. Cover completely with at least 3 layers of paper towels and glue, making sure that the base of each eye has a strong layer of paper towel connecting it to the body. If they aren't connected to the body with a strong layer of paper towel, they can fall off!
5. Place whatever amount of straws you want for legs using a piece of masking tape.
6. Cover straws and masking tape with paper towel pieces and glue mixture completely. Again, make sure that the base of each straw has sufficient paper towel to create a strong bond with the body once it dries. Allow to dry overnight.
7. Once bug is completely dry, color using acrylic paint. You can use a pencil to lightly draw lines before painting. Allow to dry.
8. To make the wings, draw them on tracing paper, trace with marker and cut. Paste them wherever you want using a silicone gun.
9. Use transparent fishing line or something similar to hang up. I personally didn't like the idea of making a hole on the body, so I decided to place the string around the body carefully.
As the school Art teacher, I was asked to contribute to the yearly ¨Altar the Muertos¨. This year it was dedicated to Francisco Gabilondo Soler (Cri-Cri), Mexican composer and performer of children's songs.
This is my version of his ¨Ratón Vaquero¨ character, though at the end I went with blue eyes and two gun holsters instead of one in order to make it similar to the one described in the song. My students loved it and it was a good way to introduce the things than can be done with modeling clay.
I needed a new pencil holder for my classroom desk and decided to make one myself. I used self hardening clay and acrylic paint.
Here's something I worked on last week. I was asked to develop a concept for a new candy line (cherry flavored/cherry shaped gummies), as well as some packaging proposals. I decided to base the concept around characters with different personalities that could, in the future, be used for animation-type publicity.
I will post my packaging ideas at a later date.
Here´s something I made with Photoshop last week. Felt like experimenting.
I was playing around with Photoshop the other day. I love animal heads on human bodies. Here, the poster can be viewed in different color schemes. The original is already featured in my Work section. It was really fun to make and, hopefully, I´ll have time to make more posters of this style.
Recently I had the honor of creating a logo for a new progressive school in Virginia.
The Independent School of Winchester has the mission of creating a learning environment where young people can discover and develop their own unique abilities and logical/critical thinking in order to positively change the world and their relationships (with self, family, peers, community members and nature). It´s founders believe in creating an environment grounded in strong spiritual values from a multiplicity of traditions, as well as using the latest research on how the young brain functions.
The school founders wanted a logo that would transmit their commitment to nature and global awareness, while still appearing modern and ¨cool¨. They liked the idea of including three different segments or symbols in their logo that could transmit the three levels of their school (elementary, middle school, and high school). In terms of colors, they said that they preferred greens and blues, but that they were open to any earth tones.
The next image includes my three logo proposals.
This is a screenshot of a piece of the final document sent to the client, with the finalized logo in different versions.
For more information about the school, visit: http://www.iswva.org/
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