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Posts Tagged ‘graphic design’

Three cheers for the holidayification of Tarts ‘n’ Crafts

October 25th, 2009

Cheer 1:

Earlier this year, I designed a new poster for Ladyfest Ottawa’s 2009 craft sales, called Tarts ‘n’ Crafts. They recently asked me to rejig the look for the upcoming holiday event, using more festive colours and incorporating falling snow. Here’s the web version of the updated poster:

I played around with actual six-sided snowflakes and even looked around for Photoshop brushstrokes, but since the original design was already so detailed, I thought I should go with less literal elements — and went with just the suggestion of flakes, blurs and shapes. The white specks and details were all done in Corel Painter on my Wacom Cintiq (as was the “XO” illustration). Closer up:

As with the initial design, this was a really fun project (I think that every time I get to use the tablet ;).

Cheer 2:

One other update I had to make was to add the logo of the Ten Oaks Project, the beneficiary of the event. As a complete fluke, I’d actually done the design of the Ten Oaks logo almost exactly a year ago; I tell you, Ottawa is a tiny town. Here’s a closer-up look at the logo:

Cheer 3:

Helping out with the poster doesn’t mean I don’t still have to apply and sweat over whether or not I make it into this show. This time around, they got three times the number of applications as there are spots. So I’m happy and very relieved to say that… I got in. Woohoo!

Event details:
- Ladyfest Tarts ‘n’ Crafts Holiday Sale: Sat. Dec. 5th from 10 am – 5pm at the Jack Purcell Community Centre (320 Jack Purcell Lane, Ottawa); $2 admission (proceeds to support women in the Ottawa Arts Community)

Drop by and say hello if you’re in town! This’ll be a terrific event with plenty of amazing DIY gift ideas… If I looked particularly exhausted that day, it’ll be largely due to the fact that the event is exactly one week after my wedding! Hooo boy.

Are YOU doing any upcoming craft shows? Are you ready???

horn tootin', m chen wears , , , , , , ,

First comes love… then comes design

August 16th, 2009

One of my dearest friends is getting married soon, and I was honoured to have designed her wedding invitations:

I illustrated the trees in Corel Painter on my handy Cintiq, my friend chose the grey + raspberry pallette, and we decided on a tri-fold card design together — with the “You are invited” panel less wide than the other panels so that it only halfway covered the raspberry information panel (I’ve blurred some of the deets so you don’t all crash the wedding, ha ha):

These kinds of meaningful projects for friends are always the most fun (and also the most nerve-wracking, since I want so badly for it to be ‘just right’!). This last wedding invite got me thinking about others that I’ve illustrated and designed for friends in the last few years. For example (again, with some personal deets blurred because I’m private like that):

Obviously, these friends are having fun with their Big Days and, for me, it’s rewarding to contribute with invites that (hopefully!) really capture and personalize the event.

(Shameless plug alert: I would love to do more of this kind of work, so if you happen to know anyone who’s looking for a funky invite — wedding or otherwise — feel free to send them my way!)

In the meantime, I can busy myself figuring out what John and my invitations will look like :-)

horn tootin' ,

Fortunate beginnings and Ben the dog

August 13th, 2009

Ben the dog, taken by John

Ten years ago, I was a fresh-faced Fine Art grad, and the world was my oyster. Reality set in when a friend helped me do an internet job search, and the single result from a search with the keyword “artist” was… “Wanted: Subway sandwich artist.” Uh oh.

Thus began some heavy duty pavement-pounding. I called every single ad firm in the yellow pages, and managed to finagle a whack of interviews. Every single one ended with “Nice work; go get some computer skills.” The last place I had an interview was a home-based business run by a dynamo named Cyndi; we hit it off and I was just about to tell her that I’d be back once I did a graphic design crash course… when she offered me a part-time position.

I worked there a few hours a week over the next couple of months, then eventually signed on full-time. Cyndi also happened to be a design instructor at the local college… so my first career-related position was basically hands-on schooling. It didn’t occur to me until years afterwards just how lucky I was that she took me on.

Going to work consisted of stuffing my brain with as much new information as possible (m-dashes, orphans and leading, oh my!), lots of laughing with co-workers, being entertained by Cyndi’s partner Mario (who does the best rendition of “Choppin’ Broccoli”)… and then there was Ben the dog.

Ben had been a neglected pup, so Cyndi and Mario took him in; they had to teach him what a ball was and how to play with it. They also taught him to ring a bell at the back door if he wanted to go out. He loved to lick people’s ears. He wagged his whole back half — not just his tail. Boy, could he drop a stink bomb! Honestly though, he was one of the absolute sweetest dogs I’ve ever met.

Last week, Ben got sick suddenly and had to be put down. I know his family are beside themselves with grief, and I’ve been surprised at how very sad I’ve been about this too. Since hearing the news, I’ve gotten nostalgic and done a lot of thinking back to this first job I had, how much it affected me, and how deeply thankful I am to have experienced it and met everyone there; what a bonus it is that we all still keep in touch.

I’ll miss you, Benny — I’m sending you big hugs, long walks and a limitless supply of ears to lick.

general rambling, good peeps , , , ,

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