IF - Robot!

A piece I created in Illustrator for a t-shirt concept featuring robots. Submitting to this week's Illustration Friday theme - Robots! Hope you enjoy it.


Thoughts on Self-Promotion

...or more accurately "Thoughts on What I Don't Do Well".

I've been busy updating all my varied social media applications.

I've given a lot of thought to dropping this blog and placing my efforts into only sharing my work on G+, LinkedIn, Behance, Tumblr, and of course, Twitter.  But...

This blog was the first step I took into sharing my art and illustration. It has lost its focus.  It rambles.  For those who know me personally, well, that's me.  I love a challenge.  I like to try a variety of methods and spend a lot of time learning new skills or techniques.  Isn't that what it's all about?  "Life-long learning", I chant to my students.  So in some ways, it does share the journey of my processes and progress.

My work is like a Carol King song. Only I could sing - "My work has been a tapestry of rich and varied hues". 

I have the darnedest time promoting myself and focusing on what I do best. Saying "HEY! Look at me over here!  I can do X, Y, AND Z!, is not my thing.   I also have a tendency to shrug off any praise that client's or viewers share.  I really should be getting them to write it down.  

So here goes -  these are the other places you can find my work.  I've added buttons on the right.  I'm trying to get them all pulled together nice and neat.  Organized.  The problem for a lot of artists isn't that we don't have work; it's that we don't have time to do the actual work, prep the files for online, organize folders for each category, and then build the online portfolios, etc.  I'm working on a Tumblr also.  More on that later.

Finding me online:



@sandravanwinkle on Twitter

And I've also been designing fabrics (mostly for my own personal collections) over on Spoonflower.

Please check out my other sites and work references.  I'll continue to use this blog as a way to discuss art and design.  I will most likely move my education blogging to another blog.  It becomes difficult to keep all my projects and output organized within one blog.  I'll post that here when I get it all pulled together, hopefully, soon.  After school starts back, I'll be very busy.

Oh!  I MUST add, we are having a BIG wedding here in the Autumn.  My handsome baby boy - yeah, he hates me calling him that - and his very lovely fiancee - are tying the knot.  I'm thrilled.  Yeah.  It's busy around here these days.  I wouldn't want it any other way.
The Happy Couple
Photo by Jason Hensley
Can I just say - I LOVE these photographs by Jason Hensley.  He's amazing.  Check him out through the link above and on the photo.

Beer Citadel: Partial Mash Brewing Guide

If you like brewing or beer, you should read this guide from award winning home-brewers at Beer Citadel.
Beer Citadel: Partial Mash Brewing Guide: The image above of the cooling down of a partial mash boil in the kitchen sink full of ice likely brings back fond (or frustrating) mem...


It's Called Lifelong Learning

Gorgeous work!  
Found this as I was researching surface textures and painting for the comic I'm working on.  Great stuff here.


WeeGran's Paintings: Part 1

Red steps into the adventure

Actually completed this one a while ago.  Just now posting.  What can I say.  Life takes over sometimes.

Acrylic on canvas 18x24.  Red just entering forest.  This was taken with my iPhone while I had it still on the easel.  It isn't a very good shot, but you get the idea, right?  It is now in WeeGran's room.  I must remember to go photograph it. 

Concept sketch for "Red" painting. Graphite on vellum.
One of the other sketch concepts for "Red".  I think I will still develop this one.  It's far creepier.  This is what I love about Grimm's Fairy Tales.  I've been re-reading the actual tales recently.  I love them.  As a child I loved being frightened ever-so-slightly by the adventures of fairy tale characters.  I hope WeeGran loves them as much as I did (do). 


Stream-of-Consciousness Saturday

Snicker-doodles and  Doctor Who Tardis cookie jar

Welcome to my first Stream-of-consciousness-Saturday post.  You know.  It's that bit of research for a project you have swirling in your mind.  That special pattern.  Those inspiring artists or art works to get your creative juices flowing. Or recipe searches - to use what you have available and because you are just so tired of the same old thing - again - which lead you to so many great recipes that you completely miss dinner. Intending to help you, a stream like this just keeps you in front of your computer until your Saturday is gone.

It's that kind of stream.  Blog-hopping at it's best.  Webby deliciousness that keeps you leaping from one link to another.  My newest assistant to blog-hopping  is Pinterest.  Oh yes.  Pinterest.  It is such an enabler of we procrastinating sorts.  But what a beautiful enabler it is!

So for all you Searchers out there -

Me - Always Searching for Something New!

 Stream-of-Consciousness-Saturday list:

1. Listening to Pandora  I have a station I call "Gracie Radio"  after the Ben Folds Five song.  Here's a YouTube version for you visual types.

2. Pinterest   Deleted account due to user policies.

3. Thought I would make this for dinner, but I suppose it will now be on tomorrow's menu. 

4. I have everything to make these

5. Explored several links from Shutterbean's blog.  Got my idea for a Saturday list from her Love List Friday posts.

6. 50 things to stop doing.  It's been one of those weeks that make you feel tired of everything.  It's one of those weeks that make you want to redefine your life.  Why do co-workers and bosses affect us so much?  Making mental note to create something positive to counteract times like these.

7.  Several ventures into the world of commerce.  Intriguing items that one covets, but feels like they just might NEED them.
  • Cuppow  Being an artist and jar saver, I found this interesting.  Too bad I own several BPA free drinking vessels or this would be mine. 
  • Haan Steam Mop.  I've been thinking about one of these since WeeGran will be wanting to crawl around here soon.
  • Because I'm a Geek!
  • Looking for cool Who stuff   (As you can see from photo above, I already own the Tardis Cookie jar)
  • Checking out the Rody Horse for WeeGran
  • And of course - Amazon.
8.  Crafty blogs from my Google Reader -
  • Elise Blaha
  • Neatorama
  • DaniDraws  Which reminds me of comics I've done in the past about my life.  I will post those after I dig them out and scan.



Upside Down, Left To Right: A Letterpress Film from Danny Cooke on Vimeo.

Type is beautiful.  Typography is how we communicate non-verbally. Type can communicate without saying a word.  Just one big fancy serifed letter or one big sturdy sans-serifed letter can inform the viewer before the story begins.

It is also the lesson that garners the most groans in a high school design class.  Why?  Good question.  But it may have something to do with software and exposure to font selection before they truly understand the power that each character possesses.  The slow art of choosing just the right style for the perfect mood. 

The students cannot seem to understand the fact that typography should reflect, or support, the message and not the typist's (or typesetter's) personal choice.  Breaking students from poor font selection is much harder than you would think. But we teachers of design continue our efforts.  Maybe one day the world will be filled with beautifully constructed messages and information graphics.

The above video is a wonderful tribute to letterpress and type.

While I didn't major in printmaking or letterpress at college, I did attend school at the same time as Kevin Bradley of Yee-Haw Industries.  (I didn't have classes with Kevin, but was in the printmaking lab a lot at the same time. I was on the opposite end of the studio creating handmade paper and books)  This is our very own homegrown letterpress art studio with a national (and maybe even international) client list. Kevin and his partner, Julie Belcher, are keeping the beauty of hand-pulled type alive and thriving.  Check out their site and their Etsy shop.  If you're in Knoxville, be sure to stop by their downtown studio.
from Yee-Haw Industries

If you want to learn more about typography there are a great many sites out there.  I Love Typography offers lots of articles and other links to feed your appe-type (sorry couldn't resist). We Love Typography has a host of many contributors.

The following video is from the Vancouver Film School.  It is a nice lesson on typography.

Kinetic type.  Take a look at this video of kinetic type. 

Conan O'Brien Kinetic Typography from Jacob Gilbreath on Vimeo.

Well, that's it for typography today.  There is lots of information out there.  Explore it.  Embrace the beauty of letter-forms.   I will be teaching typography in the upcoming weeks to my classes.   Hopefully, I will inspire them to make good decisions - type-wise at least.