Make Art That Sells Part B – Week 5 – Party Paper

Where do I even begin? 7 years ago I quit my desk job and decided I would make art and sell it on etsy. Over the years I have made greeting cards, designed wedding invitations, created whimsical logos and illustrated a children's book. All the while I worked at drawing every single day. When Lilla Rogers announced that she and Beth designed a class for illustrators that teaches you how to make art for all the different markets (paper goods, home decor, editorial, ect.), I knew this would be a life changing opportunity. I signed up the second I could (although there was a hesitation when I found out the cost, thanks for convincing me Tammie!) And now I can't believe I am saying that the two part Make Art That Sells course has ended. I looked forward to this class more than anything this past year and it flew by in an instant. I wrote my review of Part A over on the Aeolidia blog - you can read it here. Part B was even better! Every market covered was a market I would want to work in. Yes, even scrapbooking. And now look at me, I have five new pieces of amazing work to add to my portfolio.

Here is my final piece for the class. Party paper is a FUN market. Lilla's theme was Ukrainian Folk Art. I took my own twist on the subject and came up with this folksy garden party. During the lesson this week, Lilla noted that birds and floras do really well. So, I took that knowledge and used it to create this plate, napkin and cup set. I wanted to go out with a bang and I am pretty darn happy with it!


My work has grown leaps and bounds thanks to this course. • I can now create work for every market and make it a denise holmes! • I can whip up an amazing piece of art with a tight deadline. Granted there are a few sleepless nights and a heavy eye twitch going on. • I know the best way to start an assignment - icons, icons, icons! • I now know that a piece needs to be able to stand out even as a tiny thumbnail. Bet you never thought about that! • I now know what art directors are looking for. • I met a bunch of amazing, creative and talented people! • I can see a huge difference in my work - even a difference from part A to part B!

Lilla and Beth thank you so much for this class. There is nothing else like it! Thank you Lilla for sharing all your knowledge and insightful reviews!

You can check out the class here. Visit some other of my talented classmates Emily, Tammie and Flora.

Make Art That Sells Part B – Week 3 – Scrapbooking

The 3rd week zipped by of course! I think a lot of my classmates were thinking the same thing about this weeks theme. Scrapbooking?! Let's just say, it was never a market I thought I would be interested in. Of course, Lilla was able to change my mind and I opened myself up into the world of creating illustrations for the scrapbooking market. There is actually a lot of fun little pockets in the market where I see great work being made. Have you heard of Amy Tangerine? Her scrapbooking designs are pretty cute!

It took me a couple days to actually dig in and start to enjoy the assignment. This week was all about vintage cameras and typewriters and the idea of "recording your life." My theme finally clicked Saturday morning...24 hours before our assignment was due. I was attracted to the idea of a cute cat recording her time in Paris. She writes letters to her mother and father, takes pictures, and eats macaroons. Now, I don't think I would mind being this cat for a week or so!


Fun right?! I also had the opportunity to work with my illustrations in a new way. I am currently in Design Garden's Create Hand Drawn Vector class with Sabina and this past Friday's lecture was all about, a new way to me, of creating vectors in Illustrator. Before learning Sabina's technique of scanning and working in Illustrator, I had a 20 step process of scanning the images, opening in Photoshop, saving each individual image as a bitmap and then opening them in Illustrator. Let's just say it used to take me a very very long time to do my work. I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am to learn Sabina's way!!!

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!


Make Art That Sells Part B – Week 1 – Paper

It's that time again! Make Art That Sells (Part B) is back and I just finished week 1! The first module was all about the paper industry and paper has been a huge part of my business. I started out creating custom wedding invitations, which was fun but I got burnt out pretty quickly. I moved onto creating cards for my Etsy shop and then discovered a site called Paper Culture. I fell in love with their cards and what the company stood for (a very eco-friendly one) and sent them an inquiry to see if they would take me on to design a few cards. I ended up working with Paper Culture on a couple card designs, had Hazel and fell off the bandwagon. Which brings me to this week! I have been happy to revisit the paper market and excited about all the possibilities within it. I love that I'm not just limited to greeting cards, but notepads, cupcake wrappers, paper cups, wrapping paper and my favorite journals! Who doesn't love a cute journal? I know I have a dozen on my bookshelf that are just too good to write in! Our assignment for Paper was to create 2 vertical holiday themed greeting cards using either ornaments or holiday candy. CANDY! I [tbicon icon='icon-heart-1' size='12px' class='red '] candy! Below are my first quick sketches of candy and my holiday cards coming into fruition.


I have to share the little elf I sketched.


And my final greeting cards.


I had a hard time deciding which one to submit for the final. My classmates over on the facebook group were pretty split down the middle as well. I love the candy girl, but picked the christmas tree one because in the end, it just felt more holiday. Which one would have you picked?

Sit Doggy!

sitdoggy1 It's Friday already! I am finishing up week #2 over at Work/Art/Play and getting really inspired. I have an idea in the works with a FREE calendar that'll look all cozy in your home this year. I'm getting excited for Make Art That Sells Part B starting soon and I'll be hanging out over at Sabina's class Create Hand-drawn Vectors. This lady is amazing! You should see what she put together for her students even before the class begins. I can't wait to hear all her information on vectors. Don't forget to watch her video on the site!

Talk about learning overload! Have a good weekend!

(Hazel is currently sitting on my lap while I type this going "woof woof woof".)