New Illustrated Greetings Arriving in the Shop

In the aftermaths of a bunch of client work, I’m finally catching up on finalizing a handful of new shop products.  I have several new cards and art prints coming to the shop at the beginning of August!

If you follow along on Instagram, I’ve been sharing my progress on some of these designs as they’ve come into fruition.  The designs themselves are a culmination of a lot of different experiences I've been working through the past few months and new illustration techniques I've been experimenting with.  Look forward to a new blog post coming soon about some of these techniques which include a combination of traditional watercolor and digital painting.  For now, take a look at these new goodies.  Please join our newsletter for the shop update announcement at the beginning of the month!

 

Find Universal Signs In Your Life

One thing I’m considerably bad at is making really concrete decisions and following them through.  My husband can attest to this.  It takes me time to iron out all of the little details until it finally “feels” right, and sometimes I question the final decisions over and over again, constantly looking for other options, other ideas and never actually settling in.  But, those are extreme cases, sometimes I just feel the good decisions in my bones and know my way forward.  And I’m a big cheesy believer in universal signs that help guide life’s decisions.  

When I was in high school, I dragged my mom to about 8 or 9 colleges, evaluating each one, getting the feel for their art programs, costs, college life, dorms, environments, proximity to home, ironing all of those details and weighing them against one another.  I ended up applying to about 4 schools, was accepted to all of them with scholarships, but just couldn’t decide between two of them.  I was taking a Saturday class at one of the schools before my final enrollment decision was due. The studio building was basically a giant warehouse on the edge of campus that had windows spiraling the building and viewing out towards downtown Columbus.  I had been there many many times, but in this instance, I went to the bathroom, peered through the small window in that room and there it was: a giant billboard with the words “if you’re looking for sign this is it”.  Of course, it was an advertisement for the billboard, but it was staring me in the face and suddenly my decision felt lighter, airy.  I didn’t choose that school immediately in that moment, but I did eventually.  That very literal sign still resonates with me when I make big decisions today.

The past couple of months have included some of the most challenging decisions in my life.  I can’t say that I’m completely settled in, but I can say that I’m finally feeling good and grounded.  I was in a yoga class on Saturday and during a meditation, the instructor guided us to find one word that described how we felt in that moment and the first word that came to my mind was “steady”.  That’s really how I feel -- steady.  Steady in my decisions and not constantly questioning them anymore.  

After noticing a lot of little signs that led me to ultimately make the big decision to jump towards Limn House full time, I began noticing a sweet pair of cardinals chirping outside my office window for weeks on end.  They hung around our back patio, chirping in the trees, perching on the chair outside my office window everyday, popping up when I needed an encouraging reminder.  After seeing them so often, I read a little bit about cardinal symbolism. Their bright red color reminds us to stand taller and step into our natural confidence and to find light and hope in the dark days and energy in the bright days.  I needed that symbol of hope those few weeks when I felt so low.  Recently, I’ve noticed the pair hasn’t been hanging around here, but I haven’t needed them. They’ve moved on to inspire someone else.

As I’ve been building up new products for my shop, these experiences have been small reminders to have faith in my decisions.  I created a few new cards to reflect on universal signs and offer encouragement, which I hope you enjoy.  They’ll be in the Limn House shop at the beginning of August.  Join our mailing list for our our product launch announcement!

What universal signs have you experienced?

100 Days of Illustration

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Earlier this week, I announced via Instagram my participation in #the100dayproject.  I’m a little late to the party (by about a month), but I’ve been seeing a lot of other artists partake and here I am, needing a little bit of inspiration, so I thought I’d jump in.  

A little background research - #the100DayProject was started by a Yale University professor who challenged his students to make something for 100 days and document it on Instagram, which then took off globally.  It’s now run by Ella Luna, whom just has a new book out based on her viral blog post, The Crossroads of Should and Must.

I was having a really rough week last week as I finished up some projects I had been working on for quite awhile.  It always feels a little anti-climactic, you finish up some work and you’re patiently awaiting “the next big thing” or for something to soar and make you really excited and inspired.  Inspiration doesn’t always come easily and I find that if I take some needed time away to reflect, or instill a bigger goal or challenge, I’ll stick to my guns and get moving (and get really excited about it).  And of course, taking that challenge public gives me even more incentive.  Instagram is a great platform for creative sharing - just post a simple image of what you’re working on.  I’m most impressed by those artists who are really carving away at a very specific challenge and their work follows a specific style.  

My first thought was to participate as a way to get drawing everyday, but one of my big goals is to expand my shop products and carving time for that work (and creative development) can feel really challenging when I have other things needing attention each day.  So, perfect timing for this 100 day challenge, a goal - a daunting 100 days (that feels like a whole lot!) to make 100 new products, greeting cards, ideas.  I can’t promise the moon, ie that I’ll have fully fleshed out designs or that each idea will be gold, but I’ll have a lot of practice and time to narrow down my selection as I weed through the process.  

So, the challenge has begun this week!  I started by finishing up a few designs I had already started.  You can follow along on Instagram if you’re interested, and I’ll be sharing periodical updates here on the blog.  Onto some new sketches and ideas!