I haven’t forgotten the trees. I just got on a roll, and haven’t been able to jump off. I started to fix one thing, and then another. And before I knew it, my list was subdivided and neatly categorized by actions.
This weekend I revised fabric designs. For some, that meant scale adjustments. On others I revived the colors. I added to collections, verified tags, and re-wrote descriptions. I passed my goal for last month, and now have 105 designs listed.
Taking part in the recent design challenges added visibility, grew my design library and increased sales. In the last six weeks, I have developed six designs, 23 coordinates and 20 matching solids. (Some of those still need to be uploaded.) I decided that this month I would get the shop in tip-top shape.
The collection above started with five designs, I added 11 more. Three patterns, in multiple color variations. Click on the image for a closer look if you would like.
Today I also created six more designs in a different collection that I will upload to the site tomorrow. There are roughly 20 designs that need a serious make-over. I am hopeful that I can make the changes and finish this project by the end of the week.
I will find time for the trees though. I think using a different part of my brain for a bit will be helpful.
This design was so fun to work on. I found the flower when I organized my artworks. It is mounted on wood, I placed it on a shelf. Thinking about this challenge, I was trying to find a not-so-ugly bug. Then It came to me. My blue bee was sort of pretty. There it began.
I made the mouth larger, to help it print better on fabric. I just copied, resized and pasted.
Added the missing second antennae and front leg. In the reference photo, neither were visible. I copied and pasted those as well.I stretched the antennae, resizing for better printing.
I beefed up her back and rear as well. Sorry dear. The rear is now touching the leg, and is longer. The back surrounds the rear wing so it looks fully, “attached”.
It was nearly impossible to crop the bee from the wood background. Some of the wood grain obliterated the hairs on the legs. The quickest thing to do was erase the hairs, and then draw them back on in Photoshop. I was dreading that part, but it turned out to be easy.
I added highlights to the center leg, and made the bottom of the rear leg larger, and better attached to the top half.
It is hard to see most of these details in the low-res images, and they may not even show on the fabric. Then again, I have always been pleased with the quality of Spoonflowers printing. The work was fun, and challenging, and that counts for something in my book.
The only adjustments I made to the flower was to smooth the edges and add color between the blue center lines. I left them white on the painting, and I like it, but I have to admit it doesn’t “make sense”.
I smoothed the edges for better printing. I knew I was going to use an outline of the flower shape as an additional design element, so the edges needed to be as clean as possible.
Carpenter bees tunnel into wood to lay their eggs. Carpenter bee adults spend winter in wood within abandoned nest tunnels. After mating, the fertilized females excavate tunnels in wood and lay their eggs within a series of small cells. (from Wikipedia)
I wanted to include a wood element in the pattern. My first thought was an all over linear background. I couldn’t get it to work. I was “this close”. So at least I am on the right track.
Thing is, once I do manage to get it to repeat, I will be able to use it over and over. Below is a look at my idea. If you look at the lines on the left edge, and then the right, you well see that they do not match up. Some do, but not all.
Bee Bloomers, wood grain mock-up.
So I had to rethink the wood. I filled those hollow flower shapes with several faux-wood grain patterns. And honestly, I think it works better. I have the bees facing all directions, and the “wood” flowers help to support the multi-directional toss.
I can use the wood grain as I have it to create a cheater quilt though! Woo Whoo!
Bee Bloomers Collection
I wanted soft colors for the background, that would not distract from the painted elements. White, blue, yellow and green. Spoonflower designers often seem to favor dark backgrounds, so I tried a steel-blue, sampled from the bee.
I continued to play with color, and found that teal really made the flowers pop. The final turquoise is very Hawaii, tropical delight! For that one I changed the shade of green on the small button flower, and darkened the wood patterned flowers. For a closer look, visit my shop.
No matter how sure you that a friend will be there for you when you need them, it is the greatest feeling when the time comes, and they are.
All designs will be eligible for public voting, and the popular vote determines the top 25 winning designs. The first place winner will be chosen by Skillshare from the popularly-voted top 25 designs.
1 first place winner each week (5 total, 1 per theme), chosen from the top 25 by Skillshare, will receive a 1-year Skillshare Premium subscription (valued at $96) and $200 in Spoonflower credit.
The 2nd place (5 total, 1 per theme) winner will receive a 6 month Skillshare Premium subscription, along with a $100 Spoonflower credit.
3rd place (5 total, 1 per theme) winner will receive a 6 month Skillshare Premium subscription, along with a $50 Spoonflower credit.
Remaining top 10 designs will receive a $20 Spoonflower credit. The top 25 popularly-voted designs from each theme (100 total, 25 per theme) will be automatically made available for sale in the Spoonflower Marketplace(provided they are a verified seller) where they will receive 10% commission on every sale — no $5 swatch required.
In addition, all design challenge entries submitted during the Skillshare partner design challenges (04/12/17 – 05/23/17) will be entered into a drawing; one lucky contest entrant will be randomly selected by Spoonflower for the Grand Prize on Tuesday, May 30, 2017. The grand prize winner will receive a 1-year Spoonflower PRO membership (valued at $249), a 1-year Skillshare Premium subscription (valued at $96), one Wacom Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Small Tablet (valued at $218) and a 1-year Adobe Illustrator Creative Cloud subscription (valued at $240). The grand prize winner will be announced Thursday, June 1, 2017.
04/11/2017: Submissions open
05/16/2017: Submissions close at 3pm EDT
05/18/2017: Public voting opens
05/23/2017: Public voting ends at 3pm EDT to determine top 25 entries
05/25/2017: Spoonflower will announce the winner
See the winners from last week. My designs have been in the top half, or top third. But Pomegranates only received 34 votes, placing at #279 of 422. There are 410 entries this week.
I created this as an entry in the Spoonflower limited color palette succulents design challenge. The instructions were to use at least 2 of the five colors given. It was optional to use black or white as well. I used the five colors. Dark Green, Sage, Blush, Terracotta and Rhubarb.
My idea was for a simplified, or slightly abstract design, that focused on the “pattern” of the cactus itself. I usually find the limited palette challenges difficult. But these colors are close to the favorites I so often paint with!
Your vote would be awesome! You can only vote once, but you can help me spread the word, or share this post with friends. Follow the link above, click to select the design, and then scroll to the bottom and click to submit your vote. Thanks so much for taking the time!
I have two more designs completed and am working on a fourth to round out the collection. I will share those with you soon.
LYA Side Swaps
Both of the cards I received look like they are made from fabric. I could be wrong. The first is from Michele Matucheski in Oshkosh. We have swapped before. Michele is a busy creative, lots of interesting things happening on her blog. Not only is she a fabulous photographer, she works with fabrics, and weaving, even surface design!
This bit of inspiration was on the back:
“To practice any art, no matter how well or how badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So DO it!” Kurt Vonnegut
Michele Matucheski, Orange Blossom Breeze Star. LYA 2017 side swap
As you would guess, I love the colors in this card. The center star looks shiny and soft. Silk maybe? Michele also included the temperature, 53 degrees, her city, and the date. A neat little fact sticker, I wish I had thought of! Michele’s card is HUGE! 5 x 7, I didn’t realize you could go that big with a postcard. It sure does make an impression!
Patricia Mark, mixed media. LYA 2017 side swap
The second arrival has got me thoroughly intrigued. It looks like velvet on velvet, but I really have no idea. Wonderful textures. And such lively “fire”. Hoping Pat will tell me. She labeled this mixed media. Either way, I love this brilliant bloom! Patricia Mark is from Portland. Visit her site to see more of her wonderful photos.
Pat’s special message:
“To be an artist is to believe in life.” Henry Moore
So fun to be intrigued by artwork! So fun to be surprised by color and texture and pattern! Thank you both so much, Patricia and Michele! Such a joy to swap art with you again!