Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter! A quick doodle to wish you a happy and blessed Easter! Spring is here. :)

New site is up!

My new Site is up! Finally, I finished what I was supposed to do long long time ago: I got my website up and running. It wasn't planned that I would get it done this weekend (because what I REALLY need to do this weekend is to sort out my tax and numbers, so I can hand them over to my accountant next Tuesday... yikes!) It was all because I put my profile up on Illustration Mundo last Friday, and Nate suggests me to try Squarespace to build a simple website for myself. So I looked into it, started playing around and just couldn't stop until I could get to a point that the site would look somewhat decent. It took me a long time to figure things out around all the technical stuff, as I am not savvy at all when it comes to building a wensite. Now I have a simple home online. It's nothing fancy, just serves the purpose of an online portfolio. Would you come take a look? Click here.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Memory Game for Ouders Van Nu

My illustration for Ouders Van Nu, Issue #4, 2013

My illustration for Ouders Van Nu, Issue #4, 2013

I am always giddy to see an Ouders Van Nu magazine in my mail box. I have a piece in this issue, a colorful memory card game for kids. It's a farm themed game with animals, farmers, tractor, and a farm house. The magazine staff specifically asked for a colorful piece, and I had the best time creating it. It was so much fun!

 Ouders Van Nu, Issue #4, 2013

My illustration for Ouders Van Nu, Issue #4, 2013

Monday, March 25, 2013

Doodle Town + More Snow

Doodle Town print

I have a new print in my shop. It's a happy town. As you can see, there is no snow, only warm breeze and happy smiles all day long. (Can you tell that I am so ready for Spring to come?)

We just had another around of heavy snow. This is my neighbor's cat Harrison. He came over to check out our snow shoveling progress.


And this is what we had over the weekend. Ouch! It's almost April. Where are you, Spring???

Another snow storm over the weekend

Monday, March 18, 2013

Monday Helpers

 What makes Monday better?
Mondays are tough!!! I work in the office full time, and it's just so hard to get out of bed and get going on Monday mornings (especially when I am a total night owl). Here is what helps me:
1. a cup of tea
2. doodling
3. chatting birds outside of my office window (a group of common starlings)
4. and my growing baby succulent plant

What about you?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Still blooming

Sweet Yellow Flowers

This little baby is still doing well and the flowers keep coming. The tiny little yellow flowers are just so sweet and I have to take more photos while they last.

Sweet Yellow Flowers

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Pottery class report: Out of the gas kiln

Stoneware Owl Bowl

Got my second batch of pots and dishes out of the glass kiln last Tuesday. The result was not what I pictured in mind, but I still would like to share anyway just for my own record, since it's a learning process (and a fun one, too.)

I do most of my pieces with sgraffito technique.


This photo shows how they looked like after the bisque firing, all nice and clean, right?

Bisque fired stoneware pieces

And this is how the dishes look like after they came out of the gas reduction firing... FAIL!!!!! Oh my!!! I guess didn't brush on enough glaze, so all the bare clay area turned dark brown during the firing, making it really hard to see the designs.

Stoneware Dishes

And here is the little vase, it turned out alright. I might plant another succulent in it.

Small Stoneware Vase

Another bowl, some of the area on the outside turned hazy and dirty because the glaze is too thick (on the back side, you can't see it in the photo).

Stoneware Owl Bowl

Continue learning! I am still loving it and having a lot of fun with clay. By the way, I ordered myself a baby electric kiln, a tiny one that can be plugged in a regular household outlet so I can fire and test some small pieces at home without having to wait for the big kiln in the classroom, so excited! I also hope to buy another medium one later this year; I think I will make quicker progress if I own my own kiln. :)

Thursday, March 14, 2013

An extra piece that is not in the book

The piece that is not included in the book

When I was working on the Creative Lettering book, I did a few extra pieces so the publisher can pick and choose the ones they want to use. Here is one of them that is not included in the book. It's quoted from the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, and is hand-written with a black fine line Sharpie pen on watercolor paper.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

It's blooming!

It's blooming!

It's funny how a simple thing in life could lift my spirit just like that! Last week I planted some succulents in the pots I made from my pottery class, and not only I haven't killed them yet (I am the infamous Black Thumb when it comes to growing plants), one of them is now blooming some sweet small yellow flowers! I am a proud mama!

Creative Lettering

Creative Lettering

I have a new book to show you. I am very honored to be one of the 16 participating artists for the latest lettering book, Creative Lettering, by Jenny Doh, published by Lark Crafts. With 16 different artists, this book is packed with various lettering styles, pictures, ideas, and step-by-step instructions. Some of my favorite artists in this book are: Aimee Dolich, Madeline and Diane Tompkins, and Rhianna Wurman. On top of the pieces created by each artist, the beginning of the book talks about the language of typography; there is also a list of materials and supplies to help the readers to create their own letterings.

Creative Lettering

Here are a few spreads of mine. When I am at work, I do a lot of digital lettering using Photoshop and Illustrator. But as most projects in this book, every piece I did here is strictly hand-lettered, no scanner, no computer, so it's easy for people to learn and follow by using simple tools like pencil, ink with dip pen, and markers.  

Creative Lettering

Creative Lettering

Jenny has made a YouTube promo for the book; it will give you a better look of its contents.

Complete list of participating artists (according to the table of contents): Flora Chang, Jessica Swift, Pam Garrison, Francois Begnez, Karyn Denten, Aimee Dolich, Andy Ainger, Linda Schneider, Lori Vliegen, Madeline & Diane Tompkins, Stine Kassa, Lisa Engelbrecht, Philippe Debongnie, Barbara Close, Rhianna Wurman, and Martha Lever

Monday, March 11, 2013

Illustration for Ouders van Nu #3, 2013

My Illustration for Dutch parenting Magazine Ouders van Nu, Issue #3, 2013

It's always exciting to receive the latest issue of Ouders van Nu in my mail box. This is issue #3 of 2013, which I have illustrated a piece for its editorial column called "Liefde en de Luiers" ("Love and Diapers"). This issue's topic is a wife's complain about her husband being funny and charming to everyone else outside of his house but grumpy and not nice once he is at home with his own family. And the husband's reason why he is behaving this way is because he is not feeling appreciated and respected by his wife at home. Sounds like anybody you'd know?

My Illustration for Dutch parenting Magazine Ouders van Nu, Issue #3, 2013

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Sketchbook Page

Sketchbook Page

Really want to go to the studio to practice throwing some pots and bowls, but I set a goal to finish one of the projects for the upcoming book and I refuse to go out unless I am done with it. Maybe I will be able to go in the evening.

Here is a page from my sketchbook. Hope you are all making or doing fun things this weekend. Let me know what you are making if you'd like to share. Happy weekend!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Illustrations for Ouders van Nu

My Illustration for Dutch parenting Magazine Ouders van Nu, Issue #11, 2012

My Illustration for Dutch parenting Magazine Ouders van Nu, Issue #11, 2012

Last year I got an invitation from Ouders van Nu, a Dutch magazine for young parents, to do some illustrations. Last night when I got home, I was so excited to see their lovely magazines arriving in my mail box. Here are the two issues containing my illustrations. The first one is a special bonus gift for their readers, a set of 4 postcards by different artists, in celebrating the magazine's 45th anniversary.

My Illustration for Dutch parenting Magazine Ouders van Nu, Issue #13, 2012

The second illustration is for their monthly editorial column called "Liefde en de Luiers" ("Love and Diapers"), which discusses relational issues between couples, and this one is about financial problem.

My Illustration for Dutch parenting Magazine Ouders van Nu, Issue #13, 2012

Ouders van Nu is such a lovely client to work with. I've since illustrated a few more pieces for them and will be published soon.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Bowl & Pebble


Stayed late last night to work on something for another book I am participating. While I searched my garage for materials to be used for the project, I found one wooden bowl tucked away on the shelf. I had to pull it out and draw on it (it's not going to be included in the book so it's ok to show you.) I might add more details on the outside of the bowl later. I also did a pebble to go with it. Taking about the pebbles, they remind me of summer, because last year I went to a garden center and dug those pebbles out from a giant pile of landscaping rocks. I had to pick and select the perfect rocks under the sun in 100+ degrees (how fun! ha!) Looking at the snow we have outside, I can't wait for summer to be here.

Sunday, March 3, 2013



Bought three little succulents today and planted them in the small pots I made from my wheel throwing class. I am infamous for killing plants, even the easiest succulents. I really hope these three would make it this time. (The sweet little bird in the middle pot is made by Makiko Hastings.)

Friday, March 1, 2013

New Tool

New Tool Tried some new drawing tools today. I can't believe I've never used this pen before, and now I am in love! It feels very similar to nib pens which I love and use often; its ink runs smoothly and bleeds nicely on paper. I did this really fast doodle as a test run with this pen, scanned it into Photoshop, and added some color, at the same time deliberately preserving the bleeding from the ink. It's definitely going to be one of my go-to drawing tools in the future.

PS: I apologize for not updating my blog as often as I update my Facebook page. It's just easier to post and connect with people on my Facebook wall then editing blog posts here. But I will try my best to update both as much as I can. Come visit and like my page if you haven't done so. :)