Hello 2014!

I love the start of a new year! This one has proven to be quite the challenge so far. With a giant book deadline looming right over me, the flu decided to kick my butt and then my daughters. If things couldn't have gotten worse, it then decides to become pneumonia. I do have so many goals and challenges for myself this year, so instead of typing them all for you to see a boring list - I'm just going to let you know that they do exist, you are just not going to see them. 

One of my daily Hazel & I collaborative pieces...

Instead, I will just have to prove myself by posting here on the blog. By the way, have you seen my new website? I recently switched back to using Squarespace for a million reasons, but the number one is because it's just so easy to update my portfolio section. So, hopefully you've found me and you can add my new blog to your feedly! 

Design Garden Classes

I am excited to take Design Garden's Trends class coming up at the end of the month. I have a full review of The Foundations course coming up soon, but in the meantime, check out their new website and take a look at the classes they offer! 

Make Art That Sells Part B – Week 4 – Editorial

Week 4 ended and I got sad knowing next week is the very last of Make Art That Sells....ever! It is bittersweet, but I will leave my thoughts for next weeks post. Editorial work is something I have a small bit of experience in. Lilla says Editorial work is about creating art for editorial and books. I always thought of illustrating for books as its own market, but now I get that editorial work is a form of storytelling and well that goes perfectly along with books. Our assignment this week was to create a map of the city we live in. I instantly thought about Chicago and all the great little coffee roasters popping up around town.

denise_holmes_chicago_1b_week4 mats_map2

Coffee is pretty much a necessity with me. I do get that slight headache if I don't have my morning cup right away, yes that is addiction, my friends. I started drinking coffee at my grandmother's house when I was way too young. Granted it was probably a full cup of half and half, sugar and a drop of coffee. But it was delicious and I have been hooked ever since. You know that is probably why I am so short! Needless to say it is no surprise coffee was on my mind as I created this map. Because of the coverage of Chicago and the size of the page we were given, I decided to leave off the streets. I like the idea of this map being more of a story than a maps intended use. Plus everyone has a smart phone now - when you come to visit and seek out one of these roasters, you can just google map it.

It was a fun week with a fun assignment, now I must go and make a cup!

Make Art That Sells Part B – Week 2 – Children's Apparel

Zipping right along here! Just finished week 2 of Make Art That Sells part B which was all about the children's apparel market. It just so happened to be the week I was most interested in and unfortunately I was out of town. That's my luck for you! I have no experience in this market and would love to learn more about it. This weeks theme was all about camping. I knew I wanted to come up with a twist on the theme, so after days of sketching out tents, logs, vintage thermoses, and cute cuddly bears, I came up with the idea of little wee woodland fairies "camping" in the woods. I love the idea so much! I got back from my trip with 2 hours to draw, scan, and digitize before having to turn it in!

This is my final piece, I am so happy with what I came up with in the short amount of time. Pretty thrilled!



As Make Art That Sells comes to an end, I am feeling very inspired, grateful, happy, and looking forward to what Lilla has in store for Part B. This weeks assignment was to create a lush zipper pouch using imagery, whether it be traditional or digitally created,  from stuff we collect. I decided to use drawn images from my vintage children's clothing collection and old bobbins and thread that I have collected over the years from garage sales and thrift stores. I call it "sew happy" - not only because this piece makes me sooo happy, but this class has made me sooo happy! You guys, a class taught by the Lilla Rogers, need I say anymore? Okay, I might a little, but seriously this woman is amazing. She is on top of her game and has so so so much knowledge of the illustration world. If you get the chance I highly recommend taking this class. So, here is what I've come up with for my zipper pouch: denise_holmes_sewhappy_1a_week5_730

It's now back to my regularly scheduled life. My desk is piled with projects that I need to get working on!

See you in Part B this September!

Make Art That Sells – Week 4 – Wall Art

Wall Art was the hardest week for me! We were given certain colors to work with and told to cut paper and start painting! This area in making art is not my strongest. No worries though, because I had a ton a fun messing up my studio, getting paint all over my hands and discovering that I need to do this way more often. Thanks to Tammie who talked about Sarah Ahearn on her blog, I actually signed up for yet another class! Here was how my week went:wallart1





Yeah, that's probably not my best work haha, but it was fun nonetheless!