medium /// illustration

“a pitch on a silver platter”


*photo by  Liz Daly

Have you ever wanted to write an art book? Well then you’re going to want to listen to this episode of Art for Your Ear! I’m talking to San Francisco based book editor and literary agent, Kate Woodrow. She was my editor on Creative Block, and she’s working on my new book now {and has talked me off a few creative ledges along the way!}. She’s got four important ingredients that should go into every pitch, so grab a pen because you’re going to want to take notes. Listen right up there, or subscribe on iTunes. As you’re listening, take a look at the things we talked about in the order that we talked about them. First up, a few of my favorite books that Kate worked on during her decade at Chronicle Books:


Um, yes, I put my book on that list! And of course Art, Inc and Blog, Inc … and there’s Mom, Inc and Creative Inc on that list too! Here is the link to the blog post she wrote after speaking at Alt Summit 2012 {where we met}, titled “From Blog to Book: How to Turn Your Ideas into Reality”. Next I totally put her on the spot and asked her to list a few of her favorite illustrators. It was hard for her to only name a few, but here is who she mentioned/the projects she worked on them with:






So many fantastic projects! Then of course there were her answers to the speed round… two of her favorite novels that she’s read this year: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, and Purity by Jonathan Franzen. And clearly I had to include a link to this answer: The first slow song she ever danced to… In Your Eyes. Sigh. The light, the heat.

So… if you have an idea that you want to pitch, Kate is ready to hear it! You can find her at her new company {so excited for her and this whole new chapter… pardon the pun}, Present Perfect Dept., and she’s on Instagram and Twitter too. Oh, and if you’d like to sign up for the webinar she’s doing with Modern Thrive on September 21, 22, 23 you can find more information right here. Thanks so much to Kate for sharing all of these behind the scene secrets, and thanks to you for listening. There will be a new episode up next week!



Sigh. Sometimes, especially on Friday after a very long and busy week, I love to look at art like this. Ah, the soothing palette and of course the promise of scones, lattes, and general quiet for two whole days… enter the lovely work of Ontario based artist Yuliya. Yes, this is exactly what I need today.

{Prints of her work are available on Society6}

“latte foam, goop, and gumption”


This is probably the craziest story I’ve had on the podcast yet. You have to listen {try not to throw your phone across the room in a jealous rage inspired excitement!} I’m talking to New York based Artist, with a capital A, Rachel Ryle about her crazy amazing Instagram feed that changed her life within a matter of weeks. Literally. You can listen right up there under the paper latte, or subscribe on iTunes. As you’re listening, take a look at her animations… although you might want to watch after we chat because the songs in the animations might play over our talking. Technical glitch! Ok, first up, a few photos from Alt Summit this past June, where Rachel and I met:


Oh, Alt Summit photo booths… the location of so many new friendships. Alright, let’s get on with the animations that go along with her crazy inspiring story! This first one is the project she was working on until 4am, that caused her to sleep in past our recording time {totally worth it}:

I’ve teamed up with @kindsnacks to give away custom pieces of my art that are truly one of a KIND! In celebration of their new & yummy Popped bars, we’re looking for the #MomentThatPopped in your summer! By simply sharing your favorite summer photos, you’ll be entered to win a custom vintage lunchbox featuring a recreation of your special moment hand illustrated by me! Here’s all you have to do: 1. Post a photo of your favorite summer moment on Instagram or Twitter 2. Tag @kindsnacks and use #MomentThatPopped + #giveaway in your post Boom! You’re now entered to win a customized lunchbox of your favorite summer moment, kindly brought to you by @kindsnacks & me! #stopmotion #animation #summer #summertime #art

A video posted by Rachel Ryle (@rachelryle) on

Gah! So cute! And now, stepping back two years, this next piece is the first animation, titled “Make Something & Grow”, that started it all:

Make something & grow. #stopmotion #sketch #art A video posted by Rachel Ryle (@rachelryle) on

Oh, and right around here she mentioned a music video that she had seen years before she ever did any animating, that kind of blew her mind. This is it. Ok, more animations … this is a very early latte animation, just a couple of weeks in, that got her an interview on a morning show in California:

Latte Art #stopmotion #animation #sketch #art #coffee #latte #barista #latteart

A video posted by Rachel Ryle (@rachelryle) on

… the sneaky beer animation that led to one of her first paid animations … clever lady. 

… and now she’s got a huge list of clients including Volkswagen, Goop, Rag & Bone, [lots, lots, lots more], and Starbucks:

Now I want a cake pop. And she’s not only doing client work … she creates so many animations just for the love of making. Here are a bunch of my favorites from her personal collection. These range from early pieces, to more recent. You can actually see her getting more and more creative with each one!

Cotton candy, anyone? #stopmotion #animation #art #sketch #cottoncandy #vintage #yumminess   A video posted by Rachel Ryle (@rachelryle) on

And there are zillions more where these came from! Be prepared to get sucked in when you visit her Instagram feed … they’re like chips … one is just not enough! And with that, her latest personal animation, that just bumped her over 500,000 Instagram followers!?

Well there you have it … one of the craziest stories ever, and a really good lesson in following your gut! Thank you so much to Rachel for doing this with me {note to self: next time ask her about her perfect, colorful manicures!}, to Saatchi Art for supporting this episode, and big thanks to you for listening! There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

layla holzer


These feel like a dream… or maybe a beautiful nightmare. This monochrome meets neon work is by UK based artist Layla Holzer. She describes herself as a storyteller, and by the look of these stunning narrative pieces, I’d have to completely agree.

sonia pulido


A paper doll… made from porcelain. So. Much. Love. This is the work of Barcelona based artist/illustrator Sonia Pulido. All of her work, but especially the ceramic pieces, are so whimsical, feminine, with a little touch of weird {my favorite!}. That final piece, titled “The Weights”, is killing me. So gorgeous.

{some of Sonia’s pieces are available in her shop, UHALLA!}

laura berger


Oh, summertime. I’ve been loving every minute of it… warm nights, lake swims, lying around in the sun… and so when I saw these paintings by Chicago based artist/illustrator Laura Berger, well, I had no choice but to write about her again{Sorry Australia & New Zealand – you can get me back in December!}

“push through the messiness”


Today I’m talking to Portland based artist, Lisa Congdon. Yep, Portland! She just moved from her long time home of San Francisco… oh, and for the ‘speed round’, please note the ‘California’ tattoo on her arm in the photo above. Alright, listen right up there, or subscribe on iTunes. As you’re listening, you can take a peek at the things that Lisa and I talked about, in the order that we talked about them. If you’re not listening, I’ll be honest… this post won’t make much sense!

Ok, let’s do this. This is the glamorous “recording studio” that I mentioned right off the bat:


Very high tech. {Oh, and I mentioned the interview she and her wife Clay just did on the Being Boss podcast, which you can listen to right here.} I asked if she still had the first painting she ever did… this is the first still life painting from the first painting class she took {just for fun} in her early 30’s. She did this in 2001:


Love it! {thanks for sharing this little gem, Lisa!} This next piece was part of the 2012 Dorothy Saxe Invitational Exhibition at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco:


Gorgeous! And what an amazing full circle moment when her teacher stumbled upon this at that show, years after teaching her how to paint! So cool. I also wanted to include a bunch of her current abstract work, along with some of my favorites of her mixed media pieces from a few years back {that large abstract below makes me think of the “painting curve” that she talks about}


Love. And then we had to talk about her books, because there are so many of them … this isn’t even all of them! These are just the ones we had time to talk about:


Ah, they’re all so great! The new swimming book {“The Joy of Swimming: A Celebration of Our Love for Getting in the Water”} is going to be gorgeous, and will be out next Spring! Ok, next… I asked her what she loves drawing the most:


Patterns and flowers, obviously! Those images above are directly from her sketchbook. Also directly from her sketchbook? A gorgeous new line of textiles that she made with Cloud 9 Fabrics:


I wonder when she sleeps? And finally, this is the sketchbook course she was talking about:


You can find info for these classes here:  “Sketchbook Explorations” and “Line Drawing” {and there is a new “Sketchbook Explorations” class starting this fall, so keep an eye out for that} Phewf! She is a busy lady, and that was an action packed post! Thanks so much to Lisa, to Saatchi Art for supporting this episode, and to you for looking ‘n listening. The next episode will be ready for your artsy ears next Saturday.

*The top-most photo of Lisa was taken by Sarah Deragon, and the two photos of Lisa painting the large abstract were taken by Victoria Smith.

ekaterina koroleva


Simple, washy brush strokes that feel effortlessly feminine. Oh, and that rusty, autumnal color palette? Gorgeous. It’s actually making me miss sweater weather… in the blazing heat of summer! This is the gorgeous work of Berlin based artist/fashion illustrator Ekaterina Koroleva. Love.

“you’re in cider town”


Amazing things will happen… yes they will! Today’s episode is an interview with Philadelphia based artist, illustrator, hand-lettering master, Mary Kate McDevittWe talk about the best letters to draw, quotes from Ned Flanders, and we even have a little hand-lettering assignment for all of us at the end! You can listen right up there, under all of the amazingness, or you can subscribe on iTunes. Here is what we talked about, in the order that we talked about it. First of all, her hilarious, sweet and super fantastic 100 day project:


Love! And there are plenty more where these came from… she’s now on day 66 so there are a whole lot of people and pets in her instagram feed! Next, onto client work. Commissioned work is how Mary Kate spends most of her days. This is just a tiny little snippet {so much more on her site}:


I need that shirt. She does book covers, magazine covers, ads, you name it… all by hand. No computers, no fonts. So good. She also does a lot of personal work. These are two of the pieces that we were talking about… being a huge fan of reruns, she gets a lot of her favorite quotes from old TV shows, like News Radio and The Simpsons:


Ah, Ned. So wise. And finally the last thing we talked about was the letter l. Lovely little letter ‘L’, and so we decided to put out a creative challenge out for all of us… this is the hashtag you’ll need: #handletterlullaby

Thanks to Mary Kate for taking a break from unpacking her new studio, to Saatchi Art for supporting this episode, and to all of you for listening… the next episode will be up next Saturday!

land of nod : fall 2015 collection!


Ok, I know it’s July, but in the world of Land of Nod, Fall has arrived! This is my second collection for Land of Nod, and I could not be more excited about all of the gorgeous work, and talented artists who made brand new pieces for this project. Watercolor, tapestries, papier mache mobiles, paper cats… I love it all so much! Oh, and this is a cool little tidbit … those two sweet little wiener dogs, by Canadian artist Louisa Jensen, are named after my dogs, Stella & Murphy! ♥  You can find all of these, and pieces from my Spring 2015 collection, right here.