I am thrilled to show you a book I illustrated for Klutz, a division of Scholastic. As described in their about section, Klutz creates award-winning, premium activity books for kids and kid-minded adults.
Watercolor Crush contains 18 illustrations to paint--it also includes a complete and fun set of instructions as well as a top quality set of watercolor paints and paintbrush! I cannot even begin to tell you how pleased I am with it. The watercolor paper is fantastic, the paints are bright, and instructions are thorough.
The best part? You don't have to be a kid to enjoy this!! All kids love this, but I have even sat with friends for a girls' night and painted together. For my book club, they so sweetly suggested we paint the book instead of reading a book that month. It was a blast! Even the women that declared adamantly that they were not artistic found fun in it!
You can find it at Klutz, Amazon, Target, Michael's, Barnes & Noble, and many other places!
In the book I show you different ways you can paint an illustration. In the image above it is fun to try different techniques! You can use an ombre effect for a sunrise or use a bleeding technique and a white crayon to create a starry sky.
Below is a video of my 5 year old daughter painting the mermaid picture. She did a great job!
On a personal note, Klutz contacted me last year to work with them. It had been six months since my late husband passed...and being asked to do this was such a blessing. It was a dream I had always dreamed coming true. It was focused and something I really could lose myself in. I remember painting at night after my kids had gone to bed and staying up way too late to finish work before deadlines were due.
This book means so much to me.
It was a childhood wish.
It was a push from my angels.
It was a gift from Matt, from the other side.
It was a symbol of me being able to make it on my own.
But ultimately, it is a piece of work that brings joy to others.
A couple weeks ago I showed my work at the Hello, Sunrise Market and had this book on display. I kid you not--little kids were drawn to this book! They would walk over to it and couldn't put it down. It was the BEST feeling!!!
My favorite part was when my friend brought her daughter by and had me sign her book for her. I started to write her name in it but wrote it wrong.
I told her I could fix it.
We all make mistakes, but as an artist you can use your creativity to fix them and somehow your work comes out even better because of it.
I scribbled out her name and turned that into the grass. From it grew a grouping of flowers.
She was so pleased! Her mother told me not long after she had made a spelling mistake. In classic artist fashion she made the best of it and turned it into a bed of flowers.
Honestly, as I said it, I was just trying to console her. But hearing how she had done the same as me struck me and stuck with me.
The lesson being:
Make the most of whatever happens.
When you do, it just might end up even more beautiful than you could have imagined.
This is my absolute favorite painting from the book!
The colors are vibrant and when you add salt on top of the wet blue paint it creates a unique effect as the salt absorbs the water around it. Leave the salt until it dries and then brush the grains off.
There are fun tips on the ways you can display your artwork or further projects you can make with them.
There are two pages that are perforated so you can send them as postcards in the mail or display as smaller works.
This collaboration was a dream come true!
I LOVE hearing how happy it makes little girls! I love to see how they imagined the colors and the creative ways they paint them. I love hearing that grown women are buying this book and treating themselves to time painting.
Paint away, dear friends!
If you post it on instagram be sure to post the hashtag #watercolorcrushbook and feel free to tag me!
Don't hate me.
I'm just helping you get prepared for the holiday season! I promise!
I always want to give someone a thoughtful gift. Because isn't receiving one such a wonderful feeling?
So I might not be able to tell you what your husband would like for Christmas, his birthday, or Father's Day (because Heaven knows I don't know what to get mine!! I am stumped every year! I keep on giving him FOOD because that's the only thing I know he likes and that I know I can afford...)...
But I CAN tell you what that book-loving, feminine girl might want.
I would now like to introduce you to...
THE Official Gift Guide for the Smart Girl:
2. An old edition of one of their favorite books on Etsy.
3. A personal Library Kit. I kid you not. AMAZING.
4. A Jane Austen greeting card set. Because all smart girls read Austen. Duh.
5. A calligraphy set. It is all the rage right now. Pretty lettering and getting to pretend that you are Austen, but with a lot more access to showers and Bath&Body Works.
6. My art! Ha! No, really. Smart girls are PROUD that they verge on nerd. But we tend to think of ourselves in a much more romantic sense.
Exhibit A: (above) In our imagination we are not typing on our irreplaceable laptops but on cute colored typewriters. Elegant and poised, we are in a pretty outfit with our makeup done and stacks of color coordinated books surrounding us.
Pipe dreams, I know.
Exhibit B: We read glamorously amongst flowers. There are no bugs and the temperature is perfect.
Exhibit C: Our typewriter includes script fonts. Whaaaat.
Exhibit D: Ideal weather and floral conditions. Always.
Exhibit E: We wear heels while shopping for books. So we can reach the top shelf, of course.
Exhibit F: Books are our BEST FRIENDS. Sorry BFFs. But realistically, our best friends read books too, so they get it.
These are all available in my shop.
So, I hope that helped you out if you were stumped on what to buy the book lover girl, woman, mother, sister, friend in you life. If none of these are available or will ship in time, remember that a girl ALWAYS appreciates flowers and chocolate.
And if you are a Smart Girl reading this, I hope you think that Library Kit is as enchanting as I think it is!!
I have known about Polyvore for some time and how you could put together adorable little collections from clothing articles, but I never played with it till now. I am having so much fun putting together fashion boards based on paintings I have made. This is my Spring Reader painting paired with a matching outfit and accessories.
This is like playing paper dolls for grown ups!
How to use Polyvore for your business:
You can easily do this with your own artwork or products. I have read articles wherein artists were upset that their work was being used on this site, but I think it is just another avenue to expose people to your work.
All you need to do create an account, download the "clip to polyvore" button for your browser (just like Pinterest!), go to your site and start "clipping" your products.
If you are clipping it yourself you will know that it will link back to YOUR site, thus getting you exposure, and you are given credit and not some random Tumblr page. Another bonus is that if you "clip" something and someone uses it, Polyvore will let you know. You can actually keep tabs on it and see the beautiful sets that other people create using your items!
After you have clipped you can "create" a collection designed around your piece. You can pin it to Pinterest, share on your blog, share what OTHERS have created using your works....I am sure the list is endless. I am still new to this, but this is what I have learned and thought about it so far!
Comment on other people's collections! Push the like button! Engage with other users. Push "Follow" when people "Follow" you! You can learn a lot by looking at how others put together their collages. The more I play with it, the more I believe putting a collage together is its own art form!
This is my Friends and Umbrellas painting and collection.
I am sure I will be adding more collections to my Polyvore page. If you have one I would love to follow you!
It's a Good Day Typewriter painting paired with an adorable LC Lauren Conrad dress (I own the black sleeveless version. LOVE!)
A set to go with the feel of my Tropical Flowers painting.
So what are you doing with Polyvore? I saw you can make room collections, but I have a feeling the options are endless.
Do you want to build a snowman?
Or....do you want to take some easy Frozen themed pictures of your kids?
We would love to build a snowman, but we live in a very sunny valley of Southern California! These pictures were completely spur of the moment, but they turned out so cute! No elaborate costumes or props needed.
My mom bought the Frozen DVD and the kids insisted on borrowing it.
And watching it over. And over.
My niece was visiting during her college Spring Break and we were so blessed that she wanted to come spend it with us instead of seeing her off to a week in Cabo, ha ha! Cora has been a subject for my mom's and my photography since she was a baby, so she doesn't think twice when we pull out a camera!
The kiddos wanted to dress up as Anna and Kristoff, so all we needed were some braids and a dress for Clara (we got lucky that she already had red hair!) and then a hat for Calvin. Cora, my niece, was wearing a blue shirt and had the cutest headband that we tucked her hair into Elsa-style.
Calvin brought along a reindeer puppet to be Sven and then we just walked around our neighborhood and snapped some photos. It was so much fun!
I love these easy kind of photoshoots because there is NO STRESS. We didn't put a lot of time into getting ready for it. We didn't even travel far. We just took a walk! Stopped and snapped!
You could easily do this with your kids too and have the sweetest pictures. Beautiful and cute pictures don't have to cost hundreds of dollars.
Also, if you had not noticed--this is my FIRST post on my new blog for my website! My old blog has the RSS feed on the side if you want to see more photo shoot ideas, tutorials (such as DIY Bachelorette Basket, Clothespin Dollhouse, DIY Solar System Mobile, parties (like my legendary GLITTER Party!) and tips (like my secret potty training tip), or just behind the scene posts on my artwork.
Thank you for visiting!
I am a watercolor artist located in Southern California.
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