Monday, December 31, 2012

back it up (2012 edition... part ii)


july // cabin time = the best time. just look at this breakfast! / started thinking positively with positive inking! / made a lot of popsicles

august // sketched my patootie off / partied with the dead at light grey /  katie visits and we begin our pin curl adventure... to be continued! /  putted our way to the top at lili putt /

raspberry island

september // my very first ten paces swap! / scone'd it up / finally became a responsible plant owner / started a new chapter of my life / seasonal playlist obsession begins / continued my birthday crown tradition for alex / spent the evening watching movies in on a tiny island with some dreamy boys


october // took the boy to visit the mitten for the first time, a success / my pin curl tutorial with katie is revealed... and then posted on the hairpin!! / the portfolio gets a long overdue makeover / a night at the museum with our buddies charlie & regan / gloomy doodles gloomy doodles gloomy doodles! / Grimes rocked my earbuds off / alli's annual halloween party, always a hit  

thanksgiving foursquare pickled peppers

november // a visit from my awesome little brother / printed portfolio gets a makeover / pikaland feature puts a permanent smile on my face / pumpkinfest 2012 goes off like gangbusters / tritsgiving - so delicious, so fun

veggers presents

december // a spelling bee at the 331 /  first loaf of bread baked / a trip to the natural history museum with maria / couch-ridden with pneumonia / beat illness just in time to hop a plane and spend a glorious week in michigan for the holidays / went all out with my present wrapping / GEM PRESENTS 2012! bryan knows me too well

LAST POST OF 2012, BUDDIES! I've got a few things planned for January, including a real roundup of my Michigan trip and lots more art. Have a happy and safe New Year, internet!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

back it up (2012 edition)

Woah, woah wait. Is it almost New Year's? When did THAT happen? Christmas is usually the holiday that sneaks up on me, but with a whole week spent in my family's company this year felt a lot more festive. So now I guess I have to figure out what I'm wearing... tomorrow? IS IT REALLY TOMORROW? Someone pinch me.

In the past few years I've done an annual round up, although usually more fashion related than anything. This year I kinda skimped on the wardrobe remixes, so let's just look back at 2012 as a whole, shall we? STEP INTO MY SPARKLY TIME MACHINE, BUDDIES!


january // new year's day food fest with all the bestest of friends / my first fashion blogger moment / mild winter weather / listened to buddies rock out / swapped clothes with the most fashionable ladies

screens!  summit

february // started a new feature that I really need to start back up again! Spirited Away next, maybe? / printed my butt off with mr. ferenc for a good cause / parties with new neighbors / chili cook off competing and consuming

march // hair experiments / a  feature on Apartment Therapy (and consequential freakout of happiness) / guest posted over at Erin's adorbs blog / finished up the latest album cover for the talented Matt Jones

april // participated in the pokemon battle royale at light greyroller skating (and creeper avoiding) with some fun ladies /  visits from my parents and my favorite katie / yearly friends brunch, a delicious gathering as always

may // california, california californiaaaa with the boyf's family.. and a mini katie reunion! / an epic "partyship"... complete with sailor hats! /  brainstorming with lisa leads to our (still working on it!) zine /  did I mention California?

june // the froyo obsession begins / meg hunt & light grey get my butt in gear at an illustrator's workshop / our very first CSA begins / beach trips and board games and dancing in the streets

Look out for the second half of this post! Coming tomorrow... OR IN 2013!!! (... depending on how lazy I am tomorrow)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

post haste

I'm back! My holiday adventures were a blast - lots and lots of activities and festivities all around. While I gather up all the holiday photos, though, I thought I'd show you a fun project I completed recently!

After my feature on Pikaland, the super lovely Amy contacted me about working on a "Thank You" postcard that she could send out with purchases from the Pikaland shop. Obviously I said yes yes yes, and off we started.

Here's my original sketch (on the left) and the revised sketch after Amy's feedback (right). This was a pretty quick project so I provided a few concepts, but maybe not as detailed as I normally do. Luckily Amy had a great idea for my cat thumbnail, and we went with it! (p.s. thanks to my buddy Chance and his lovely meowzer Aoife for being my feline model!)

Unfortunately I didn't document my entire process... I've been meaning to do a process post, perhaps someday soon! Here, though, are the items I created outside of the computer! Lately I've been experimenting with graphite shapes and selective linework. Then I scan them and play around with them in photoshop!

Voila! The final product. I'm super happy with it - simple and cute with a little hand lettering thrown in for good measure! Now I highly recommend you go check out the Pikaland store! The holidays might almost be over, but that doesn't mean you can't buy yourself a present... like the AMAZING wall calendar! I have one hanging in my kitchen, it's full of amazing illustrations and a great bonus booklet of interviews. Buy, buy, buy~!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

for a spell

- spell for a festive season - 

two sprigs mistletoe, tied with red string.

one red candle, flame glowing

one large raw citrine, to perpetuate joy

vial of honey, sweet and precious

salt pile in a wooden bowl, to fortify alchemy 

combine and ingest at midnight

(okay so maybe that's all made up, but I had a good time making it up! And yes, the salt pile is a Skyrim reference, nerd alert.  Also never eat mistletoe, that business is poisonous. Happy Holidays to all, and to all a fantastic day and a warm cozy night.)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

wishing well

Was everyone and their mother sick last week? I know I was - and what I thought was a harmless cold one day turned out to be full blown pneumonia that lasted wayyyy too long. The worst part was my sense of taste was TOTALLY thrown off (this cheese tastes terrible!) and my appetite was gone. I ate a lot of soup (which lead me to never wanting soup again), and the rest of me subsisted on clementines, townhouse crackers, and antioxidant-laden green tea.

Let's just say I'm very glad to be well again... and just in time for the holidays! Tomorrow I'm off to Michigan for an entire week - blog posts, I've decided, will be optional... so don't expect too much!

In the meantime: I did another Ten Paces & Draw swap! This one was The Great Gatsby themed, which was great fun to sketch and illustrate. I loved my sketch from Allison Ranieri - the final isn't exactly what I wanted but unfortunately I had to finish it with a fever of 102. Next time!

Monday, December 3, 2012

party lines

Awwwww yiss, it's December. Time to be FESTIVE. Time to BAKE SOME COOKIES AND WRAP SOME PRESENTS. And, best of all, TIME TO GO TO SOME HOLIDAY PARTIES. I love me some holiday party fashion - there's no other time of the year when sparkles and gold and more sparkles are SO socially acceptable. To me, at least. 

So, let's imagine our dream holiday party outfits! This year I'm thinking it might be fun to add lime green (instead of pink or coral) into the mix. What say you? I whipped up two versions (cheapish and spendy) for your viewing pleasure...

CHEAP / dress / headband / clutch / hairpins / shoes / rings

SPENDY / earrings / top (can't find the one in the photo, which is Michael Kors, but there's a similar one here) / skirt / shoes / purse

Thursday, November 29, 2012


Well you didn't think November would end without a Thanksgiving post, did you? I've done one almost every year! Thanksgiving is a biiiig deal in my (large) family, and the sheer amount of food produced to feed the 18-24 folks that normally show up is monumental. My personal favorite bite is a little bit of turkey and mashed potato with a BIG helping of my mom's uh-maze-ing cranberry orange relish.

And, since there are so many of us, many games are played. This year's hits included Blockus (which I won both times, thankyouverymuch), Cards Against Humanity and the three classics: Poker, Euchre, and FOURSQUARE. We take our foursquare seriously, and let's be honest: it's the only exercise I got all weekend. Otherwise it's just eating, drinking, and quite a bit of karaoke-ing. What else could a girl ask for? Oh, some photos from my phone? OKAY.

foursquare time / 666 / jake goes back for seconds / pickled peppers on the back porch

And now, of course, my mind is already turning to Christmas. I know a lot of people don't like how early the holiday stuff comes out in stores these days... but I guess I sort of don't mind! Parties and food and lots of gold and white and blue and red? Sounds like a good time to me. Now, someone help me make a wreath.

wreath inspiration on my parent's porch / my beloved martha stewart christmas tree - this might be its last year, the branches are yellowing.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

girl talk

I mentioned earlier that for the GIRLS: Fact or Fiction show at Light Grey I chose the talented and gorgeous performance artist Marina Abramovic. Well, here's the piece! It's been quietly sitting on my website for some time but I wanted to wait awhile before I posted the whole thing.

This ended up being a very difficult portrait to do - by doing so much research I started getting nervous about properly representing an artist that I admire so deeply. After many attempts at starting, I finally decided to focus on the props used in her many pieces throughout the years. See if you can figure them all out! It's like Marina Abramovic scavenger hunt!!

And please, come to the opening of GIRLS if you can make it! If you can't make it, no worries! There's a real sweet looking book for sale. [UPDATE: you can also buy my print NOW, HERE! Spend $100 on prints or whatever and you'll get the book FOR FREEEE].

Monday, November 26, 2012

supply & demand

Hello, bloggie! Did you have a nice Thanksgiving? I certainly did - although at 18 attendees this year our numbers were down ever-so-slightly. That's right: usually the "Tritsgiving" (as I like to call it) tops off somewhere in the 20s. Even so, it was delicious and full of plenty of merry-making.

Things are getting festive and holiday-y now, so before I descend down that path (party planning, cookie baking, present buying, etc) I wanted to post one little non-Christmasy thing. I've been working on this pattern as part of a self-initiated challenge to make more patterns. There was a hot second where I was going to create a pattern for a fabric and then make bandanas from the fabric, but that might be best left for next year.

But that doesn't mean we can't use this fun lil' guy inspired by my love of cute office supplies! NO SIREE. Here, some links to get you started:

Feel free to offer these up on your blog but (of coures) only if you link back here! And please, let me know so I can stop by and say thanks!!

Monday, November 19, 2012

prints charming

Have you heard of Minted? It's a pretty good website to get completely sucked up into, only to come out an hour later dreaming about baby shower invitations and moving announcements - even though you're in no way planning on having a baby OR moving. 

The nice thing is that they sort of have a Threadless-style system going, with themed challenges for artists and designers to submit too... with promises of prize money and a cut of the profits if you're picked! Obviously there are more direct ways to make money as an artist, but I sort of like the homework-esque feel to these challenges. After all, the pressure of a deadline always works well for me.

So here's my little plea, oh Dear Lovely Readers of My Blog. Would you go vote for my submission to their latest art print challenge? I'm quite happy with what I came up with, and hopefully you are too!

And even if you don't vote for it, at least go look around. There's a lot of fun stuff to find, and a lot of talented people contributing!

Monday, November 12, 2012

bake off

Aw man guys, this weekend was great. It delivered. I am satisfied. Much relaxation was done, but the highlight was, as Alli dubbed it, PUMPKINFEST 2K12 (pronounced "two-kay-twelve", of course). With two sugar pumpkins and a few baking accessories in tow, I made my way over to Alli's house Saturday afternoon. A few hours later I emerged with three different pumpkin dishes and a sense of supreme Fall happiness.

And, of course, a full stomach!

They were so pretty, I couldn't help but draw them all. 
I'd never made pumpkin pie from an actual pumpkin, but it was surprisingly easy! Just a little more time consuming, and the final product was just a little more textured. I can't find the recipe we used, but I substituted half the heavy cream for a quarter cup of very strongly brewed chai tea, for some spice. These awesome piecrust cutters came in handy for some simple decorations.

Do you like pancetta, fontina cheese, brocollini, pumpkin and more pie crust? If so then I really highly recommend this crostata recipe from Dramatic Pancake. I ended up using pumpkin instead of squash, premade pie crust and threw in a lot more fontina than they called for... but that's because I'm lazy and also I love cheese. It's seriously so delicious, rustic and tasty and makes the kitchen smell AMAZING.

Alli made this black bean & pumpkin soup, which was also so tasty. We sat around in the kitchen while this finished up and ate cheese and whipped up some hand made whipped cream for the pies. The soup is hearty and perfect for a dark fall (or winter!) night. 

Are you still in pumpkin mode? It's a hard habit to kick for me until Thanksgiving is over. 

Friday, November 9, 2012

looking forward to the weekend


Welcome to the weekend, friends. I'm happy to report that my plans for the following days include relaxing and baking, which is a nice break from last weekend's major (enjoyable) frivolity. To celebrate, I made this little drawing. Yay!!! 

Here are some links to get your weekend going right:

-First put on this crazy awesome Korean girl group 2NE1 and get your dance on. I love the fashion (bling'd out baseball bat! hair horns! THE SHOES OH MY GAH) in this video, and the song sounds a little like current day Robyn, which I love. I'm falling down the Kpop rabbit hole, guys, and I don't think I want to come out of it.

-Are you the drinking kind? I've been making a whole lotta mulled cider with some whiskey poured in for a little extra happiness. My premade mulling spices just ran out, so now I'm looking to put some together myself - this recipe looks good.

-This adorable story about a dad who hacked into a Legend of Zelda for his daughter - cute and nerdy!

-Totally going to try to dig out the sponge rollers and try this out, the Beauty Department always has such good ideas!

In other news, yesterday I was featured on one of my absolute favorite illustration blogs: Pikaland! What a nice surprise :D - they always have such fun an interesting posts, you should seriously check them out some time.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Whirlwind weekend leads to whirlwind beginning of week! My dearest little/taller brother was in town with his awesome lady, and we tried our darndest to show them a good time. After they were gone I went on an adventure to unlock my car (my fault) with Bill, and now I'm sipping a coffee after getting my vote on! What will tomorrow bring?

a halloween card, expertly picked by my expert greeting-card picking mother / an "I voted" sticker, straight from my most favorite polling place ever. They're so nice!

Settlers of Catan with my visiting family, of course the winner was the Catan Virgin / Tonkatsu Curry Ramen from Masu at the Mall of America. I will never eat at another MOA restaurant again, this place is the tops.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

gloom & doom

If you follow me on instagram you've probably seen my feed littered with quick (and not so quick) drawing of spooky things all month. Bill came up with the genius idea of doing one "gloomy doodle" every day during the month of October, and I quickly jumped on the band wagon. It's so fun drawing spooky icky gloomy things. I took a lot of inspiration from Silent Hill and Lars Von Trier movies and a website I found that had recipes for dark magic spells... what does that say about me?

 I have one left to do, on this the final day of October - I wonder what I'll come up with. Here are some of my favorites... Happy Halloweenie!