Monday, June 30, 2014

Weekend Adventures!

I've got this song stuck in my head right now. Maybe this will take it out? lower case thank you These kinds of things are good to know Untitled Dear Alex... A family sentiment <3 Instructions! Moulin Rouge! Making Milagros because I wanna

1.  The chorus from "Back To You" by The Riverdales.  It was stuck in my head at the time // 2. A thank you to Mark, who taught an awesome Ride class at the office // 3. A message to the old man about dinner // 4. Something I need to do... // 5-7. I assembled a little care package for my brother in Canada! // 8.  My favorite quote from "Moulin Rouge!" trying a technique where I watered down the ink a little  // 9. This little milagro came out from another design but I'll write more about that later...

I got LOTS of calligraphy practicing done this weekend! Can you tell? :)  I even did some watercolor experimentation, too!  It was a really fun and very creative weekend for sure!  I sent out Marisa's Summer Swap package and a little care package from my brother!  I hope they like them!!

I took the old man, my dad and his lady to Indie Craft Experience, where I got the cutest shirt made right in front of me!!  It was great!

Inking Inking Thanks for the shirt @nooshstudios! In action! In action! T-Shirt Printing

Thanks to Chris Neuenschwander for having such cute designs and making it a really fun process to watch!  I haven't done block printing in FOREVER, so it was a thrill to watch my t-shirt be made using that process!  The only downside: it has to cutely hang to dry completely for a few days!  I don't want to wait that long to wear it!  It's so cute!!!  I get it, though...I know...I'm really impatient...BUT I'm pretty sure it will be ready for me to wear on the Fourth!

Do you guys have plans for the holiday?

Have a great week!

Friday, June 27, 2014

My Very First Oblique Pen!

Supplies Untitled Oh my glob - oblique pen first-timer ✒️ Practice Practice I saw this quote on Instagram this morning & thought it would be a fun first time experiment with my oblique pen

1. My shiny new supplies! // 2.  Ready to go!  // 3. Oh my glob - I'm totally writing all fancy and stuff! // 4. This "Hello Lauren" was one of the first few things I wrote once I got all settled in with my ink and stuff // 5. This "Hello Mom" was in the second set of writing I did // 6. I've been saving quotes around various social media so I can write them out with my new toys.  I saw this one on Instagram yesterday morning and decided to make a little pick-me-up card for my old man

I just had to share!  My supplies came in from Paper and Ink Arts and I think I'm officially even more in love with calligraphy!  I loved the feel of dipping the pen tip into the ink and how just a little bit of pressure changed everything.  Granted, I definitely need more practice before I get really serious but I'm  enjoying the process so far.  These posts have become my new best friend.

Starting with TPK's Faux Calligraphy really helped me understand script, downstrokes and slants.  It even helped me realize my "personality" through the way my hand moved while creating letters.  I mean, check these out!  These are two of my most favorite envelopes I've ever done with faux calligraphy and watercolors.

More envelope love! More envelope love!

These are both going out very soon and I can't wait for the recipients to get them!!  I'm hoping the response will be good! :)  BTW - I used a mechanical pencil to sketch out the words first and then I went over them with my most favorite pen: the Sharpie Fine Point Pen.

Since my hard drives at work are almost at capacity, I can't really work on anything too strenuous today so I'm watching a lot of progress bars and wishing I could be letting the ink flow!  I printed out more Flourish Formal Worksheets for more practicing over the weekend.  I can't wait!

Happy Friday!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Instant Adventures #9

Untitled Untitled Untitled Untitled My little watercolor flower blooms for #postaljune

This weekend was quite the colorful and creative one!  I spent a lot of time at my friends' house helping set up a blue screen on Friday for test shooting on Saturday and in between, I found myself enjoying the wildflowers outside of two of my local Whole Foods.  They were so pretty!

1: Weeds and/or wildflowers 
2: Begonias
3: Hydrangea and purple coneflower mix
4: A little bee perched on a purple coneflower
5: Purple coneflower
6: Little flowers I painted for the June Challenge at the Postal Society

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Sweet Incoming Mail + Calligraphy WIPs!

It has been a long time since I did one of these but things have settled down enough for me to finally write an Incoming Mail post!  Marisa sent me a lovely card with cute things for my SMASH*book, Fab sent me a cute little package in response to the one I sent her and Erica sent me her adorable version of Creepy Hearts Club hearts!

I was so happy to see these on Monday because Monday was a crappy day.  My computer kept crashing, I was troubleshooting all day and my producer kept checking in on me every 5 minutes.  Very nerve-wrecking.  My Avid station is still down, unfortunately, but while I'm monitoring an archival file transfer (that is taking forever, btw), I'm staying busy by practicing my calligraphy.

I was inspired by this post at The Postman's Knock.  I have always loved Typography Art in some form (like my chalkboard art) but I didn't really have the desire to pick it up again (on a smaller scale).

Taking inspiration from the "Greetings from..." post cards I collected in Florida, I drew this on my wall at work (before the crash)

Greetings from Avidland!

Then I saw the Typography Art post at TPK and freaked out!  I didn't need clunky chalk in the way, I needed the needlepoint preciseness of my mechanical pencil (or just a really sharp one)!  I quickly came up with the sentiment of "Wish you were here" because my best friend in the entire Universe landed in Atlanta yesterday morning and I was thinking it was appropriate :)

"Wish you were here" work in progress "Wish you were here" typography art piece all inked up an pretty
UPDATE - the "Wish you were here" quote is all inked up and ready to be scanned in and prettified by the ol' Photoshop!

But because I'm a spazz and I only brought the arrow section home with me to work on with my favorite tools, I altered it just a little...


I was so proud of my efforts that I experimented in free-hand! Let me tell you - this worksheet is a great tool to follow!  Download it!  You'll be so glad you did!  I always use it as a base for my capital letters.

Untitled Untitled Untitled

For the "Thank you" above, I used TPK's style of "faux calligraphy" - which I picked up in this post.  You might remember this from when I did some envelope calligraphy for my Christmas cards last year!  I wasn't the best at it then but I'm feeling a little more comfortable now!

I hope you're having a great week!

Happy Wednesday!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Most Colorful Street in St. Pete

...technically it's an alleyway but still - it's the prettiest alleyway in St. Petersburg, FL.

Snake Woman Secret Alleyway Desserts Sloth

Our alley adventure started with this mural:

Full View

We kept passing it on the one-way to the highway and then we slowly started to notice more.  One day, the old man kept the car running while I ran from piece to piece down the alley as I discovered more and more pieces hidden - if you're not looking!

One of my favorite sections was this lovely collection:

Colorful Alleyway

Twiggy Sun Face

Upon further investigation, I link-hopped from here to here and started uncovering some of the artists behind the wonderful pieces of work.  Recognize Twiggy from my Instagram?  Her portrait and the Sun Face piece (my favorite!) were done by the folks at the design studio Bluelucy.

So many great finds are tucked away in the alley north of Central Avenue between Sixth and Seventh streets.  If you're in St. Petersburg, I highly recommend you check it out before it gets painted over - that's if it gets painted over - which I hope it doesn't!  I made the mistake of missing out on the Clever Girl piece that I saw on San Smith's Instagram.  She was lurking at the Krog Street tunnel, which changes so much.  I snoozed and lost.  Oh well...

Check out more of my photos of the St. Pete mural alleyway in this set!

Here are the artists that I know of that contributed to this great little alley:  
Pale Horse x Tes One collab
Pale Horse x BASK collab
Derek Donnelly of Saint Paint Arts and Apparel
Alex Gluek
Christian Thomas

*If I left anybody off, please let me know in the comments! :)

Hope you're having an awesome Thursday!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Adventures at The Old Tampa Bay Hotel

The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel

When the old man first suggested the Tampa / St. Pete area of Florida for our vacation, I was all, "Tampa?  What the heck is in Tampa?!"  Turns out, there's some pretty neat architecture, including the hidden gem of the Old Tampa Bay Hotel.  In the spirit of the Ponce de Leon Hotel-turned-into-Flager College in St. Augustine (where the old man and I visited in 2011), the Tampa Bay Hotel is now part of the University of Tampa.

I first saw this place featured on Southern Spirit Guide when I searched the Florida Ghosts tag for any interesting places to keep an eye out for.  I'm so glad I checked it out because this place blew us away!

We toured the museum, romped around the main student lobby and walked through most of the (accessible) first floor and imagined what it must've been like when it was a grand hotel.  I wasn't sure if I could take photos on the tour with my Nikon, so I kept it small and sweet with my iPhone.  I wanted to experiment with the Hongdae HipstaPak as my "Florida Pack".  I try to give each place I visit its own Hipstamatic lens/film combo when I take photos.  I don't know why but I think after we went to St. Augustine, I started designating lens/film combos to certain places to sort of give them the same "feel".

Anyways - this place is amazing!  We learned so much and got to see what kind of grand things outfitted the hotel.  It was such a wonderful experience with a fun, informative tour and there were so many beautiful things to see.  When I was younger, I wasn't really a fan of all that Victorian opulence but I love it now!  I think it's so interesting to see how much our tastes have changed and I'm amazed at how we evolve with each generation.

I'm hoping to upload my Nikon photos from the entire trip, so keep an eye out on my Flickr and this set for more to come!

Hope you're having a great week!

The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel The Old Tampa Bay Hotel

1-3: Exterior shots of the Old Tampa Bay Hotel
4: An inkwell and pen at one (of several) writing desks in the Writing and Reading Room
5-6: A couple of gorgeous mirrors in the hallway
7: A bust
8: I thought the spelling of "Porto Rican" was interesting for this book.  The book was published in 1898!  I wonder how old this copy is...
9-10: A room showcasing various womens' hobbies
11: A page from the hotel guest registry.  The different handwriting was beautiful!
12: An old projector piece
13: One of the restored bedrooms
14: The music room
15: One of many statues.  I liked the silhouette (and she also looks like she's all "Shawty, that's my jam!")
16. An old camera and photo