Sunday 27 August 2017

Hello pattern, hello fabric!

It's nice to look at this part of my work again! It's been quite a while … The reason for revisiting pattern design is another contest, the Minted "Fabric Frenzy" challenge. Minted is looking for a wide range of designs for homedecor (both kids and adult) and kid's clothing. 
I'll be featuring a small selection of my submissions here in this blogpost. If you'd like to see all of them, feel free to look at my "Voting now!" page, I've listed everything over there (18 patterns in the whole).

Like always with Minted competitions, the selection of designs goes by public votes or by editor picks. So if you see something you like, please just quickly click on the image! That'll lead you directly to my submissions on the Minted page. Thank you so much! Voting is extended until Monday, October 2! (Please note: If you are not a Minted customer already, you'd need to set up an account on Minted to be able to vote.)

"Ocean Garden"

As I love anything that has to do with the sea, and especially the amazing beauty of underwater flora and fauna, designing these two patterns was very much my cup of tea. Both pattern were done for homedecor. "Ocean Garden" above is a handpainted watercolour pattern, whereas the elements of "Ocean life" below were done with papercuts. Both patterns would work especially well in maritime/ beach house style homes.

"Ocean Life"

"Soul Food"

My "Soul Food" pattern inspired by all kinds of root vegetables is pretty much mixed media: papercut, monotype printing and crayon textures are all in the mix, and finally I edited everything digitally. A fab pattern for for the kitchen or for table linens.

And here's some designs for children!

The first design up features a classic, the fairytale of "Little Red Riding Hood". I had lots of fun drawing the characters and all the lush nature elements. This pattern is aimed mainly at children's homedecor, but would work for kid's clothing as well.

"Knights and Dragons"

"Submarines Ahoy!"

Same goes for the two boy's patterns above, they work for kid's home decor as well as for kid's apparel. Both are quirky and handdrawn and had lots of fun doing them. I especially like my busy little submarine rescue boats, I hope kids will love them too!

That's my selection for today. To see more of my patterns, please hop over to my "Voting now" page!
To see all of the submissions to this compettition (4541!), click here!

Sunday 30 July 2017

New Wall Art for Kids and Teens

Here's some new art or young people! Inspired by the Minted + Pottery Barn contest for kid's and teen's wallart I made a small selection including painting/ illustration and photography.

(Like always with Minted comps votes and likes are very welcome! Voting already ends tomorrow evening, Monday July 31 (Mid European time). So if you see something you like and want to help me to get it selected for the Minted and/ or Pottery Barn stores, please just quickly click on the image! That'll lead you directly to my submissions on the Minted page. Thank you so much! 
Please note: If you are not a Minted customer already, you'd need to set up an account on Minted to be able to vote.)

"Quick as a Bunny said the Beetle"

"Hello World said MissTurtle"

Here's some more info about my art:

For both illustrative pieces above I did the main characters with papercut and collage. Then I added the "scene" with crayon and put it all together digitally. A fun way of working!
As you might see by the choice of my titles I aimed for storytelling prints that prompt the viewer to weave  their own stories around the characters.
The sporty hare will be fab for any young athlete or sports fan. Whereas the turtle conveys confidence and curiosity and will be a great print for any child that is keen to discover and explore the world.

"A little Fantasy about Flying"

And here's two "airborn" prints. My "Little Fantasy about Flying" above is inspired by my love of airships and hot-air-balloons and shows some steampunk influences as well as a decent dose of whimsy.  It's another mixed media piece combining pen and ink drawings with gouache paint and a little bit of collage.
The photograph below was done in Zeebrugge, Belgium, one of the best spots for kite surfing/ surfing on the North Sea coast. I love the feeling of space, freedom and movement in it and think it would be a great print for a young person's room.

"The Evening Bath"

"The Evening Bath" above was bravely taken by a group of schoolchildren on the coast of the Isle of Wight, England. Bravely because the North Sea was very very cold on that day … (I'd tested it out myself before!)
I love this photograph because it evokes the carefree summer holiday feeling of childhood. And as well because of the contrast of that small hub of human energy against the huge turquoise and blue surface of the North Sea.

"The Midnight Flock"

"Nighttime Tidelands Gleaming Sea"

"The Sorbet Tide"

Speaking of the North Sea – the series of 3 photographs above was done on the North Sea coast of Belgium, and is called "North Sea Nocturne". We took a trip there in June, and I was fascinated with the bright nights of the Summer Solstice. The gleaming light was just amazing! I really didn't expect this, usually you only get these bright Summer Solstice nights a bit more up north. Probably it's the surface of the sea reflecting the light that leads to a similar effect like in Scandinavia. Anyway, I was intrigued, and took several long walks along the beaches late in the evening. These photographs all were taken close to midnight … I hope I managed to capture a bit of that dreamy and peaceful atmosphere.

"The Dreamy Palace"

The "Dreamy Palace" was painted with watercolour and gouache. It's inspired by the tales of 1001 nights.

"Rainforest Rythms"

The photograph above follows the current interior trend for tropical and green wallart. It's a close up of a palm leaf. I aimed to captured the leaf’s abstract organic forms and found two different rhythms that characterize the rainforest: sunlit, fresh and almost electric green on the front, dark, gloomy and intriguing on the backside …

That's it for today! I hope you like my selection. Fingers crossed … and thank you so much for any votes and likes!

Thursday 6 July 2017

How to have winter fun in June:

Well … all you have to do is to design for stationary! I am slowly getting used to the "design schedule" for Holiday cards. This year I didn't feel as much disconnected with the rest of the world as I did last year. And all that snow even had a cooling effect on some very hot June days :-)

The designs shown here are submissions to the current Minted Challenge for Holiday Cards. Like always with Minted comps votes and likes are very welcome! Please just click on the images, that'll lead you directly to my submissions on the Minted page. Thank you so much! Voting ends on Friday evening, July 7 … already … it's almost too late for vote asking … 

And here's a bit more about my designs:  

" A Holiday Stroll 1"

" A Holiday Stroll 2"

The two cards above both feature details of one of my watercolour paintings.
"Angel Duo"

Whereas the sketchy pen + ink and crayon angels were done as part of an advent challenge a while ago.

"Anatomy of a Snowflake"

The snowflake design is for a corporate Holiday card. It was inspired by old anatomical/ botanical  drawings and provides a lot of room to add the company highlights of the year and a thank you + holiday message to the clients.

"Wish upon a Winter Star"

The inspiration for the two snow bunnies wasn't forest animals, but my own cat. I watched him observing and admiring the first snow of winter through the studio windows, obviously planning some mischief (he just loves snow!).
I painted this little winter scene with gouache and silver gouache.

"Christmas Ballet All Stars"

And finally a Christmas Ballet card that is just a bit silly :-)

I hope you'll like my card designs. And now, back to summer!!!

Sunday 14 May 2017

New stationary designs

Lately I haven't had much time for creating due to family health issues … but somehow, in between things, I managed to do some work for the "Better Together Minted Greeting Card Design Challenge". Would have loved to do more … Oh well ok, I think in times like these the most important thing is to somehow just keep working – in order to keep one's creative muscles relatively fit and healthy.

Today I'll show you some of my submissions to this challenge. It is a contest for both copy and design. One could either work with own copy, or choose copy submitted by another artist and create for that. Something that I loved to do!
Votes and likes would be very welcome! Voting already ends on Monday evening, 15th of May (mid european time) – sorry for the rush! I simply didn't manage to post my designs earlier … Thank you so much for voting and liking!

Lovely Day Flowers

"Lovely Day Flowers" – watercolour floral design  for a birthday card with copy by Jennifer Lew: "Front: Make today lovely/ Inside: Happy Birthday".

"Walk in Flowers"

"Walk in Flowers" is a 21st birthday card featuring a shower of watercolour petals based on my own copy. Front: "May you walk in flowers and dance in the rain." Inside: "With lots of love on your 21st birthday!"

"Sunny Road"

"Sunny Road" is a another 21st birthday card based on my own copy: Front: "Wishing you … wind in your hair, joy in your heart and a sunny road to life's adventures." Inside: "Happy 21st Birthday!"


"Entwine" is a wedding card design based on a copy by Lisa Sunday Rinella. Front: "Lifes entwine, dreams melt into one another, joy is on the wind." Inside: So happy you found each other." I immediately fell in love with Lisa's words and together with my watercolour details this card makes one of my fave submissions.

"Emerald Isle Blessing"

"Emerals Isle Blessing" – this one is special to me because the copywriter, Mariecor Agravante, chose my photographic art print out of the bounty of designs that are already for sale on Minted and wrote a copy for it specifically to go on a card together. Front: "Emerald Isle Blessing", Inside (excerpt):  "May the mists of the Eirinn isle, bring a glow to your dimpled smile, … And may the wings of Irish laughter, Uplift you now and ever after." Thank you so much, Mariecor!

"My own kind"

"My own kind" – here's a mixed media botanical design that I used for a mother's birthday card featuring copy by Kate Ross. Front: "You've always taught me to be my own kind of beautiful." Inside: "I'm so grateful for you, Mom. I celebrate you on your birthday and always."

"Always Love"

 "Always Love" – this sympathy card features my own photography. The copy is by Courtney Crane. Front: "Though there is loss …, Inside: "love always remains. Thinking of you with heartfelt sympathy."

Finally this is a card to send to a loved one: "Galactical". It is based on a copy by Frooted Design. Front: "The moon is way too close." Inside: "Love you to the furthest galaxy and back!"

Want to see more? You can have a look at ALL submissions (3752!) to this challenge over here.
And you can find ALL OF MY submissions using the filter "Sorted by artist" and then hop over to page 71. Thank you!

Saturday 15 April 2017

Spring Awakening

It's been a while since my last blogpost – sorry! Sometimes the days go by so fast … Especially in these first weeks of spring when I grab every opportunity to get outside!
I love seeing our valley and the river Lahn slowly waking up to spring. It's almost like you can watch the change from day to day.
These pics below are from the end of March.

The catkins are the first to wake up. And as we've got a lot of them, for quite some time the riverside will be spotted by glowing yellow-green bushes – a beautiful sight!

The canoe/ kayaking season is slowly starting too. (We have a few steadfast canoeists who get out on the river even in winter, but these are really very few.)
The wild violets are pretty early too. You'll occasionally find them on the slopes of the valley.

This is the typical riparian forest above, at the beginning of April.
And below, this now is mid April – I took these pics yesterday.

Well you can say that it's the same as every year … true, but I love it anyway! I hope you'll enjoy my pictures as well. Wishing you all a happy, peaceful and green Easter!

Wednesday 1 March 2017

New originals in my Etsy shop!

Over the last days I filled up my Etsy shop with new listings. Some are older paintings, some pretty recent.
I've had a serious studio sorting – just the thing one does before springtime starts I guess! Feels good to get things out of the drawers. Half way through this I realized that do this (and maybe need to do it!) to invite new work in.

For now here's some of my new listings:

First up here are two smaller watercolours that tie together well. "Color Energy 1" and "Color Energy 2" inject a generous dose of fresh colour to energize a room after the long grey winter.

And here is another floral watercolour – with a softer vibe this time:

"Soft Summer Bouquet" is great to bring an informal, relaxing summer mood to any room.

And I now have a new section for kids in shop! For now it is just three paintings, but I hope to grow it over this year. Here's one of the new listings: "The Adventurers" – they originally were painted as a placement design for kid's fashion but I think my little animal pirates are great for wall art as well.

Let me introduce you to the gang:

Tiger for sure is the captain. No adventure will escape his brave heart and sharp green eyes!

Little Rosella Piggie always looks on the bright side of pirate life and has a smile and joke for everybody, even in bad or dangerous situations …

and Benno the dog is a faithful and strong sidekick, the best friend any pirate could have!


 There's more in the shop, so feel free to have a look :-) Hope you'll enjoy!


Friday 3 February 2017

A new contest: magic light … and lots of animals!

February starts with a new art contest, with the 2017 "Minted x West Elm Art on the Big Stage". The contest is for art prints, theme and chosen medium are open.
Here's some of my entries, I hope you'll enjoy them! They pretty well reflect my fave media at the moment: photography, watercolour and handprinting. Please vote for them if you like them! You as well can have a look at all of my submissions on my voting page. Thank you so much! Voting ends on Wednesday, February 15, 2017.

(If you'd like to vote you'll have to open up an account on Minted, or log into it. Then you can rate the submissions from 1 (worst rate) up to 5 (best). Likes don't count as vote. Love them anyway though!)

Morning Bath Killarney Ireland

With the photographic collage of a scene at the Lakes of Killarney in Ireland, I was aiming for a storytelling print that feels like an entry into a diary and depicts a fleeting but treasured moment. The scene was shot against the light, which adds to the dreamy atmosphere of the beautiful landscape.

Deer Jump

Looking through my entries I realized that I included a lot of animals this time! Well they are very inspiring to me :-)
I did the "Deer Jump" as part of last year's Inktober challenge (you can read a bit more about it here if you like to). I love the way this simple painterly sketch captures movement and animal beauty as well as a magical mood.

Collecting Birds – Caffinch

"Collecting Birds" is an ongoing series of watercolour birds in their natural surroundings, painted to celebrate the beauty and diversity of nature. They are inspired by the illustrations you'll find in old books for identifying bird species, and I try to marry this inspiration with the loose painterly quality of watercolours. I submitted 3 of these – you can find the other 2 on my voting page.

Irish Sheep 2

Ok, I simply had to include this friendly chap! Travelling in Ireland these sheep are your constant companions, but I tried for long to do a good portrait as they tend to be wild and shy. This close up and upfront shoot now finally shows one of them in full beauty and pride :-)

Cow Parade

My "Cow Parade" is a digital collage of monoprints. The prints I used are all leftovers from an older commission – all the ones that went a bit wrong somewhere … I call them "odd prints", have been collecting them for quite some time, and love them for exactly that, for the mistakes and quirks. It was fun to do sthg with them finally – and I hope people will have fun with them too!

And here's two more landscapes!
In this shot of Dingle Harbour in Ireland below I captured clouds and sun playing on the ships and hills, reducing them to silhouettes and highlighting the importance of the elements – it's a small land floating between a vast sea and sky. The photograph is part of my Irish "Light on …" series. I submitted 3 of these – you can find the other 2 on my voting page.

Light on Dingle Harbour Ireland

A Winter Walk

Finally here's a watercolour painted in Germany. It was inspired by a walk on a foggy day in early winter – I loved the reduced color palette and the way the forest and hills melted into the soft greys of the frosty sky. A painting that radiates a peaceful and meditative mood.

Want to see more? Just hop over to my voting page!
You as well can have a look at all submissions here. But beware – it might take quite a while, there's 6278 of them in the whole! Wish me luck!
And thank you for visiting and voting :-)