Thursday, July 17, 2014

Spoonflower Fabric8 Cosmic Voyage Final Round


The final round of the Robert Kaufman Fabric8 contest is underway and you can now vote for your favorite collection!
I have to say, it was really difficult to choose just one.  I seriously couldn't decide so I ultimately let my daughter choose!

Seeing the finished collections makes me want to build the coordinates for my Alien Incubator design.  They have been in my head all along but when my design didn't make the top 100 I pulled the plug on the designing.  Now, I'm inspired to bring them into fruition!

If you check out the entries, there are links to blog posts about each of the designers.  It was fun to read about where everyone lives around the world and hear about where their inspiration comes from.  Check out the collections and vote here!


Friday, June 27, 2014

Spoonflower Free Shipping Day is Coming!

Hello again!

I didn't expect to be back so soon!  I just got this message from Spoonflower and I wanted to share that they will be having a free shipping day coming up.  Mark your calendars!

http://www.spoonflower.com/profiles/jillbyers

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Sewing Notions

I'm entered into another Spoonflower contest.  The theme is "Sewing Notions" and this time we needed to create 4 coordinating designs that will be shown on one yard of fabric. 

Here are my 4 designs.  Check out all of the entries and vote for you favorites here.http://www.spoonflower.com/fabric/3262894 
I really enjoyed painting all of the elements and my favorite coordinate is the pom pom stripe.  I love the pom pom stripe.  I originally made the pom poms as an element on a paper napkin design that I did in MATSB.  I knew they would become a stripe some day and here they are.   I've uploaded a slightly different colorway (with pink instead of peach) to my Society6 shop too.  Here it is as a pillow.


http://society6.com/jillbyers/pom-pom-fringe_pillow#25=193&18=126

This may be my last contest for a while because it's summertime.  School is out and there is not a lot of free time for me.  I was not able to complete my MATS Bootcamp assignment this month because of a lack of time.  If you're interested in seeing the assignment check them out here.  The theme was "message in a bottle".  I really like the theme and hope to bring my idea into fruition someday!  I sure hope to be able to complete next months Bootcamp assignment since it will be the last one.

There are not enough hours in the day!

It's summertime though and it's all good.

HAPPY SUMMER!!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Feeling alienated

I'm so bummed. 

I think that sounds more positive than if I said depressed.   I knew that I had zero chance of winning the Fabric8 contest but I had hopes to make the top 100.  I'm trying to stay positive and not be discouraged that my aliens didn't make the first cut.  It's really, really difficult but I'm trying.

My "New Years Revolution" (yes, I spelled that correctly) was to work on my confidence.  It just took a huge hit.   I'm going to keep trudging along though.  I'm going to keep building my portfolio in hopes that some day I'll be somewhat successful at something.   I have the bar set low so I'm pretty hopeful.

There are some fabulous designs to vote on.  I can't even pick a favorite because there are so many that I love.  Check out the top 100 and vote here.



Friday, June 6, 2014

What does a garden mean to you?

When you hear the word "garden", what do you think of?  Some people think vegetables, others picture flowers, maybe you think of both.  Depending on what climate you live in, the plants will vary too.  There was a time when I used to only picture flowers, more specifically an English garden full of flowers.

I have always planted flower gardens up until 4 years ago when I took the leap into vegetable growing too.  I live in an area full of deer, rabbits, ground hogs and other animals with voracious appetites that strike in the middle of the night.  Having anything grow in my yard is a challenge.  We moved into our house 11 years ago this summer and I'm still trying to figure out what will grow in my yard under the soil, sun and animal conditions that I have.

For me, a garden is a great escape.  My yard is a lot of work but it's also so rewarding.  This is my favorite time of year.  Everything is so healthy and full of life.  I took a walk around the yard this morning with my ipod as my camera and here is what is happening...


My 4 year old vegetable garden.  Deer fencing all around with added chicken wire on the bottom buried into the ground to keep the ground hog out.  The first year we just had deer fencing and he laughed at us while he was running away with our tomatoes.  Now, we laugh at him.


This is the second year for the strawberries.  Last year I didn't net them because we have always been so focused on the four legged animals that we forgot about the berry eaters with wings.  I'm not sure how I forgot about the birds because I have 7 blueberry bushes that give us a handful of blueberries.  You need to wake up before the birds if you want to pick a ripe blueberry.  They don't like the unripe kind either.  It's a race to see who gets there first. 


So far... the netting is working for strawberries!  I'm going to leave the blueberries for the birds again this year.



We also plant tomatoes, lots of basil,  snap peas, yellow squash, zucchini and cucumbers.  Nothing too complicated.



Paeonies are one of my favorite flowers and by a strike of luck none of the animals around me like to eat them!  I have them planted all over my yard and every year I add more.  This one shows the tragedy of not staking your paeonies.  I ran out of stakes and this one suffered from the rain we had last night.


I'm trying foxglove this year.  It's supposed to be deer and rabbit proof.  We shall see...


Last but not least... As I've mentioned in a previous post... My husband's hops.  There are so many invasive weeds in our yard the list is too long, and even knowing that, my husband decided to introduce another one!  They are somewhat contained to an area near our driveway and you can almost watch them grow!  The hops will be making their way into a batch of beer at some point.

I'll try to post some more photos as the summer moves along.

Happy Friday!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Spoonflower and Robert Kaufman

An exciting contest is underway at Spoonflower!

Spoonflower is teaming up with Robert Kaufman Fabrics to sponsor a fantastic opportunity for 8 designers.  This yearly contest is named Fabric8 and the theme for this year is "Cosmic Voyage".  The difference with this contest and the usual weekly contest is that...  "Fabric8 is an annual contest to discover eight bold and modern fabric collections from new and emerging designers.  The winner of the contest will be offered a contract to design a fabric collection for Robert Kaufman Fabrics, a $1000 advance against royalties, and a Wacom professional digital drawing tablet.  Each of the eight finalists will receive $150 in Spoonflower credit."

How great is that!!??

Spoonflower and Robert Kaufman will first pick 100 designs out of all of the entries and announce the semifinalists on June 11th.

Those lucky 100 designs will be posted for public voting and 8 finalists will be announced June 19th.

The 8 finalists will then need to create 3 coordinating fabrics to make a cohesive collection.  Those 8 collections will then be posted for public voting and one fortunate winner will be announced July 24th!

Exciting!  I had to enter this one.  I think that it is a wonderful opportunity from Robert Kaufman.  They receive dozens of requests every week from designers that hope to have a fabric contract with them.  I have been wanting to send them my deigns for a while now but I get very intimidated knowing the competition that is out there.  I would LOVE to make the first cut.  After that, it will be a long shot to make the top 8!  There are a lot of great designs being submitted.  Fingers crossed!

Here is my silly design called "Alien Incubators".  When I first started to think about what to create I immediately thought of "The Jetsons" cartoon that I loved to watch when I was a child.  I originally planned to make floating cities inside these domes.  I was looking at architecture from Le Corbusier for inspiration and was having fun pretending to be an architect.  Then, I became frustrated with my design and the direction that it was going and I started to draw flowers (imagine that!).  I started to create little greenhouses under my domes until the thought hit me that the concept wasn't related to space enough.  I felt like I was creating another terrarium design so I then added little alien gardeners.  The aliens started to take on a life of their own and that's when I decided on alien incubators.  It all comes together if you stick with it long enough!  

I'm pretty attached to these little guys from another galaxy.  I'm picturing this design... and the coordinates that are still in my head... as being great for quilts, pillows, curtains, pajamas, backpacks, anything!  

Wish me luck!
Jill



http://www.spoonflower.com/designs/3192652

Monday, May 26, 2014

MATS Bootcamp - May

This month we had an editorial assignment.  Lilla gave us an article on meditation and we needed to create an illustration for it to fit on one page of a magazine.

The article was titled "How to meditate: A Primer for People Who Don't Like to Meditate"  The author does not like to mediate because basically, it's really difficult to close your mind to all of the chaos that surrounds us.  She discusses the benefits of meditation and how powerful it can be and she challenges herself to meditate more often and encourages the reader to give it a try.

I thought that I would focus on the benefits of mediation rather than the fact that it's actually very difficult to do.  The first line of the article read "Take a deep breath and close your eyes".  I went with that.

I can tell you that this is the third time that I have painted a person since figure drawing class in college way back when...  All three times have been because of Lilla too!  I have always been so afraid of drawing people.  I could pick apart the things about this girl that are not quite right... but I will not.  I'm inspired to keep figure drawing!  This assignment also made me realize that I really need to pay more attention to editorial work.  I will definitely keep my eyes open more!  I'm usually focused on putting flowers into a repeat pattern so I'm a bit rusty when it comes to layout and composition, fonts and hand lettering.  I know that there is tremendous room for me to improve in those areas and even so... I'm pretty happy with how it came out!  I'm also happy that I was able to complete the assignment.  I seriously goofed off last week playing in the sunshine and enjoying the amazing weather that we have been having. 

I can't wait to see what everyone created.  The online gallery should be up on Tuesday.  There is sure to be some stunning work from everyone.  I'll come back and post a link.

I'm back!
Here is the link.  Bootcamp May 2014 Gallery
There are a few hundred really fantastic illustrations!  I'm always so impressed with the diversity of styles and the creativity is always so inspiring.  Please take some time and have a look through all of them!  Wow!