Monday, March 16, 2015


I have always been interested in type and graphic design, but I started out thinking that I was no good at it. And, truthfully, I wasn't. I didn't know hardly anything really about design, composition or the fact that there is a difference between a font and a typeface.

In the world of art and design, I was fairly green. Equipped with only my instincts and raw talent, I hated my graphic design course so much that the first semester I attempted to take it, I ended up dropping the class entirely, unsure of whether or not I would ever return.

And then somewhere along the line, graphic design became one of my only options to round out my credit requirements for graduation. Dropping it again ceased to be doable, so I plunged in head first to a world of which I felt as though I knew nothing.

I was completely underestimating myself, though. If I'm being honest. Because by the second time around I had gained an incredible knowledge of composition and even though my design skills were seriously lacking, I had a lot of fine art experience that I didn't realize I could bring to the table. You see, art and design go hand in hand. You don't have to be an artist to be a designer, but you do have to be a designer to be an artist - whether you realize it or not.

That fateful semester, I fell in love with graphic design. I wasn't the best in my class, but my improvement rate was off the charts. And since then, I ended up in a typography class to better my love of letters, and I have recently been putting all that good design and typography knowledge to use.

You see, I may have graduated with a degree in Art Education, and I may no longer be teaching in a public school classroom, but my artistic abilities have not gone unused. And for that, I am proud of myself.

So here are some projects I have been up to lately - a series of chalkboard quotes done in both chalk pen and colored chalk/chalk pastels. It has been incredibly fun to watch my skills become honed. There is still lots of room for improvement, but what artist is ever satisfied with only the skill levels that they have? Here's to learning more and creating more and finding myself in this artistic world I am currently living in.

 The following typography drawings are not done in chalk, but instead with copic markers and black pens

Monday, September 29, 2014


I have been playing with charcoal pencils lately. It started when I was at everybody's favorite craft store, Michael's, and I found this stupid awesome sketchpad with toned paper. There was one with grey toned paper, but I went with the brown, because why not? Hashtag carpe diem. 

And since I now possess toned paper, I can't just use graphite because that goes against every fiber of my art heart, which is no good for no body. Also, charcoal is one of my favorite mediums to use and well, logically I couldn't go anywhere else. So here we are! 

I pulled up a photograph on Pinterest to imitate using a white charcoal pencil and a HB and 6B charcoal pencil. In my opinion she kind of looks like Faith Hill, but I mean, worse things could have happened.

Then I started to incorporate color, and just, hold on to your seats, kids.

All of this art stuff I've been doing lately has been good for my soul. I am re-starting to create my own art and it was Drawing 111 where I fell back in love with art making anyway, so it's also a little like going back to my roots.

"You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have." - Maya Angelou

Monday, March 24, 2014

pieces of me: a day in pictures

Sometimes you just need a photo adventure with some good friends where you walk around town and take silly pictures and go inside all of the stores. 

And pretend to own all of the nice houses.

And pet the cute little puppies by the lake. 

And eat at Hudson's Hamburgers because it's been there for 100 years and they don't serve fries.

And buy rings that make you feel like an art teacher. 

And wear hipster glasses while playing chess at Java on Sherman and drinking a Bowl of Soul.

And playing with the kid toys because we're all actually six year olds. 

Because this is a beautiful life.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

pieces of me: part two

I like to go on adventures (hence the name of my other blog...natventures HA). And I also like to take my camera with me on my adventures. For photographic evidence reasons.

Also because you can't have too many pictures.

(I totally took these pictures while I was driving. Don't worry! I just held the camera up and clicked, hoping I got a good shot somewhere in there because you can't look through the view finder and drive in a straight line at the same time.)

The sun was out on my drive down to Moscow on Friday afternoon and just, I always feel more like myself when the sun is out. I can't explain it.

And then that Nathan guy and I went on a walk around the Arboretum at the UI on Saturday after we went to play tennis because what else do you do on an overcast Saturday?

Unrelated, I really suck at tennis.

Monday, March 3, 2014

pieces of me

i took my first photography class when i was a senior in high school. i used my dad's pentax camera who's shutter sounded beastly whenever you took a photo. i didn't really know anything about cameras or photos or light rooms, i just knew that photography made art easy. i didn't have to have above average drawing or painting skills to make things look realistic, i just needed to press a button.

having a DSLR and clicking a button doesn't make you a photographer, though. and as much as i would love to be a professional photographer, i'm just not. i still don't know enough about f stops and ISOs and apertures for which lighting scenarios are best. besides my one high school class a billion years ago, i'm mostly self taught. but being an art major helped significantly with my understanding of good design and composition, so i'd like to think i have some things under control.

anyway, i don't take enough pictures. i'm still figuring out how to see the beauty in the everyday. so i'm starting a series of pictures to photograph my everyday life. i took to my apartment today, photographing the space which i physically inhabit. you can tell a lot about a person by what they photograph and how. so here's me - in picture form.