“Anything one does every day is important and imposing and anywhere one lives is interesting and beautiful.”

 Gertrude Stein

via The Happiness Project.

Gertrude knows best

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From The Desk Of

Artist Adam Stennett’s Desk via From the Desk Of

Artist HuskMitNavn’s Desk via From the Desk Of

Graphic Designer Milton Glaser’s desk via From the Desk Of

Following on the heels of my obsession with In the Make‘s studio tours is a new little discovery: From The Desk Of.

No need to feel guilty over your voyeuristic prediliction for other people’s work spaces.  Get your fix right here!

Each desk usually features a combination of on-site shots, photos of projects in process or finished works, and a short  interview about their work space, process, tools, and favourite objects.  I especially love the rare ” inside my desk drawer” money shot.

You’d think that the sprawling and pristine studio workshops in the woods would have me pining for acreage and floor to ceiling windows.  Surprisingly, what I take the most comfort in seeing, are the artists that make their magic in tiny, chaotic spaces.  I  want to believe that I’m not the only one that goes to bed with bits of paperscraps unwittingly glued to her feet.

From The Desk Of is the brainchild of writer/photographer/traveller/cultural enthusiast Kate Donnelly.  She has some pretty neat things going on here and here.

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Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens: Uppercase Issue #18

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Did you get the Sound of Music reference?  I’m sure the Von Trapp family would agree with me that Uppercase Magazine deserves a place on anyone’s “favourite things”  list.  Self-described as a publication for the Creative and Curious –  Issue #18 is heavily focused on a medium near and dear to my heart: Collage!

While I’m still waiting for my subscription to arrive, I got a great email yesterday from Erin at Uppercase.  She had a little preview to share from their reader-participation project “The Handsome Ransom Note” that caused an enthusiastic-yet-tragically-inelegant-happy dance at the kitchen table.

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Getting to see my stuff in print is new and exhilarating.  Thank you Uppercase, for putting out such a fun call for submission and giving me the incentive to flex my creative muscles.

Want to find out more about what the people behind the magazine are up to? Visit their blog .

Itching to get your hands on a copy?  Subscribe or renew by August 1 using the code “contributor18” and get $10 off. You can also find a list of stockists on their website.

Happy cutting and pasting, my friends!

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Daily Euphoria: Dueling Banjos

This short animation by the artist Kristen M. Liu made me choke on my lunch today.  Watch the eyebrows!

Are you creatively satisfied?

This is the first in a series of questions asked of creative professionals by The Great Discontent.  The variety of answers are surprising , and challenge my assumptions about the creative contentment of those who are leaders in the world of design and art.

This is how TGD describes their new video project:

Two Minutes with TGD is a series of brief interviews that expands on themes already explored by The Great Discontent: creativity, risk, and what connects us. The series is a TGD special project, introducing video content in addition to our regularly published written interviews.

Can’t wait to see more!

 

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Daily Euphoria: playing with my tea leaves

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They’re not just for brewing anymore!  Pineapple Oolong pattern-making, just because.

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Daily Euphoria: Oliver Jeffers goes hunting (for ideas and lunch)

Oliver Jeffers Author Film 2013 from Oliver Jeffers on Vimeo. A film by Mac Premo.

Giant pencils, bows and arrows, light bulbs dangling from the sky.  Intrigued?  There is a reason Oliver Jeffers and his work are so beloved!

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Ode to Telluride Festivarians

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This weekend marked the 40th anniversary of the Telluride Bluegrass festival, an event I was lucky enough to attend last year with my favourite travel partner, Hobo G.  Set against the stunning backdrop of a box canyon, it is one of the most beautiful and well-organized outdoor festivals I have ever attended    I could wax poetic about the amazing sets and top-notch musicians that are attracted to the show, but that’s a given.  A huge part of the love I feel for this festival has everything to do with the attendees aka “festivarians”.   The crowds are full of heart, showing so much enthusiasm for the performers and respect for one another. Not an easy feat when personal space can, at times, be snug.  This recent article in the Guardian UK gives a great sense of the experience and “flavour” of the experience as a festival go-er.

With such a diverse cross-section of  attendees, the people watching was a boon!  Yes, I may have gotten whiplash from checking out all the unique looks that were on parade that weekend!  Never have I seen such a far-reaching assortment of straw hats, since then.   I hope to finish a series of drawings based on my “bluegrass muses”.  Here were a few I dashed off, to whet my whistle, and some other photos of memorable festheads I am working from .  More to come!

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Telluride. We miss you and we will be back!

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Daily Euphoria: Ninjas and Flowers

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An impressive hand drawn sign on some metal shelving at the side of the road.  Garbage night is the best.

Still obsessing over hand lettering.

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Hand cramps of love (for hand lettering)

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What I’m working on these days.

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Decisions, decisions…

I’m going deep down into the rabbit hole with this map-making project and kind of fuzzing out on the big picture at the moment.   Eventually I will manage to assimilate all my little doodles into a Franken-map of the odd and awesome, but for now, I’m geeking out on the details!

Clearly, what I’ve been getting the most pleasure out of is practicing my lettering.  I came by my love honestly and early, thanks to my highschool art teacher.   Mrs. Huebener was a calligrapher, and in those days, I’m pretty sure I thought that was uncool.  What did I know?  The most advanced art instruction I’d had to date was sewing pink aprons with plastic pockets (how avant garde!) in junior high Home Ec. class.  Thank goodness the bar was raised by Mrs. H.  I distinctly remember one of our first grade 9  assignments was to create a monogram of our initials using Roman Caps . I recall how badly my hand shook trying to draw a straight line that first class, the pervasive smell (and stain) of india ink, and how my writer’s callus ballooned over the course of the year.  To this day, I still grip my pens too tightly and that callus?  I call him Arnold.

While I never saved any of those shaky and earnest high school assignments, I did rifle through some old sketchbooks recently while looking for map ideas. Care to join me on this little walk down memory lane?

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Doodle on a mail-forwarding label, 2009.

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Old school layout ! Draft of a Christmas postcard for clients c. 2008.

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2006 – I suffered from a bad case of insomnia that year.

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An everlasting love of word bubbles, 2007.

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Drawing whatever was on my desk, apparently mostly CDs and art supplies. c. 2004.

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I have always enjoyed (obsessively) making lists, c. 2007

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Some keepers from the Hand Lettering class I took last year, taught by the amazing illustrator Katy Dockrill at Nook. Super fun!

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