medium /// mixed media




#creativeUNblock // january project… almost done!

There is one week left to go for January’s #creativeUNblock challenge {by New York based artist Trey Speegle, p.79 in Creative Block}, and I’ve been loving every second of it… and it looks like lots of you have too! There are so many pieces that you guys have made/posted. Here are just a few of my favorites so far … oh, so many techniques at work!

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…………………………………………………………  by: @mariko_koda   ………………………………………………………….

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 …………………………………………………………  by: @jedmikolaites  …………………………………………………………

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 …………………………………………………………  by: @kaytet  …………………………………………………………

Ahhh, so good! I hope you get as much out of this challenge as I have! If you want to do it this week before the month is out, find the details here. February’s project is going up next Sunday. Ok, I had originally said the first Saturday of each month, but I can’t wait til February 7th for the first Saturday, can you? I didn’t think so! See you on Sunday February 1 for the next #creativeUNblock assignment!

 





january #creativeUNblock : an in-progress update

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Oh my word… I LOVE THIS PROJECT! I had so much fun, and I even had a couple of ah-ha moments. {As a refresher, in case you missed the first post about this - on the first Saturday of each month, for all of 2015, I’ll be posting a new project right here. Each one is from my book, Creative Block. I’m doing all of them, and you’re welcome to join in!}

The #creativeUNblock project for January is by Trey Speegle – p.79, Creative Block. Find or draw an image, copy it 50 times on cardstock, and then alter it 50 different ways. Trey also adds, “Create your own tight parameters… then give yourself a LOT of room to play.” Ok, so to be totally honest, I felt a bit overwhelmed. Alter it 50 different ways? With any supplies I want? The possibilities felt endless… but not in a good way. I decided to take Trey’s advice and add one more “tight parameter” for myself. I chose a very limited palette, mainly neon pink/red. I grabbed my gel pens, gouache, bits of cut paper, washi tape, the spirograph set I got for Christmas, and a big cup of coffee!

In the back of my mind, as I was choosing supplies, I thought, “Maybe I should grab some paint.” Nah. I’ve decided that I’m not a painter, so no need for paint. But it kept nagging me… this is supposed to be about being free to experiment. Why wasn’t I truly doing that? I wasn’t even touching the neon gouache that I’d brought out. Then it dawned on me {and I have no idea why I’ve never put this together before}… you can’t spell painting without PAIN. Ha! Very true for me… and it actually made for a fantastic piece in this little series! I decided to stop being such a baby and face my “fears”. I grabbed the paint. Wouldn’t you know, my favorite piece from the whole day was covered in paint {the hands, above}. The thing I had to get over was worrying about “ruining” the piece I was working on. Who cares? That’s the whole point in having 50 in front of you… make make make make… that includes making mistakes – or happy accidents depending how you look at it. Oh, it was amazingly liberating, in so many ways! I’m sooooo doing this again. And again, and again! {No really, I’m going to choose a totally different image, and go again before January is over!}

If you want to share what you’re making for this project, just upload your work to instagram or twitter and hashtag it with #creativeUNblock. I’ve seen lots of you doing it already, and I hope you’re having as much fun as I am! {Just a few weeks til the February project goes up}

 





huntz liu

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Layers… oh, so many layers of gorgeous cut paper stacked on top of each other! This is the paper-cutting mixed media work of LA based artist/graphic designer Huntz Liu. I love those side shots that reveal the lovely depth he’s created, and that give us a closer look at what’s going on with each piece… granted, I have no idea how to do this myself {nor the patience}, but I’m so happy that he does! Happy weekend, everyone.





megan whitmarsh

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I may never look at another book or magazine the same way again! Oh, I would love a stack of these hand sewn, fabric art books/magazines by American artist Megan Whitmarsh on my coffee table. And I know this post is not about me, but have to say it… how insanely cool would it be if she made “Creative Block” out of fabric, foam, embroidery thread, and markers!? Speaking of which, I wonder if these are the markers she uses:

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Maybe!





chad wys

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American artist Chad Wys is known for dipping and defacing found landscapes/portraits {I wrote about him in 2010}, but I just came across his elegant series titled “Arrangement in Skintones”… perfect dots and soft portraits from days gone by. Yep, it’s safe to say that the art history lover and the graphic designer in me are equally smitten ♥





dear 2014…

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Dear 2014,

If I could make out with you, I totally would. You were really, really good. In fact, you were very close to the most exciting year of my entire life, second only to the year that my son was born.

You were filled with art that was awe-inspiring, delicate, intriguing, funbeautifully bizarre, joyous, and oh, so meticulous.

You were there when my first book hit shelves in February, and when my second book was released in September {and you just saw me sign the deal to write my third book!? Gah!}

You took me to all sorts of amazing places like San Francisco, LA, Seattle, Portland, Vancouver, Victoria, Toronto, Vancouver again, Dublin… and New York for the very first time in my life! {What? Yep, true story.}  There were camping trips, road trips, and small town adventures with my amazing husband and ridiculously sweet son. I met so many new friends, and spent time with dear old friends – all of whom I plan on seeing again as soon as I possibly can!

You gave me the chance to : guest write “Real Art for a Fictitious World” on sfgirlbybay; to open my own online gallery; to speak at PIXAR; to be interviewed by the lovely folks at oprah.com {yep, that was insane}, and to curate the biggest art exhibition of my career so far!

I tried realllllly hard to slow down and enjoy every milestone along the way, although I’m not sure if I did a very good job – it seems like a bit of a blur to be honest – a wonderful, exciting, pinch-me because I feel beyond blessed, kind of a blur. 

So, with that I’ll say thanks for everything, 2014. You were truly mind-blowing. 

~ danielle xo

Happy New Year, everyone. Thank you so much for being part of this craziness! I cannot believe how lucky I am to have all of you in my world. Ok… now go make more art so I have something to write about in 2015!

{Fabulous, kissy, sparkly collages by California based artist Eugenia Loli}





bedford show … a recap

Ok, this might be the longest post ever, but this show is just so gorgeous, I had to show you everything! I was thrilled when the Bedford Gallery asked me to curate a show in their lovely space… and after almost a year of planning, it finally opened on December 7th! The Bedford gave me carte blanche, so I decided to bring my book, Creative Block, to life! We have work from 20 of the 50 artists, unblocking stations set up so that people can try a few exercises from the book, and some of my most favorite pull-quotes are on the wall in vinyl lettering. Have a look, and I’ll see you at the bottom of this gigantic recap…







Ahhhh! So exciting! Six of the artists came to the opening from as far as Chicago and New York… it was an amazing night! So many friends, collectors, art enthusiasts, kids, and even a chihuahua {sorry, no photo of him!}. The days following the opening were action packed too. I did an indepth walkthrough with the 60+ docents that volunteer at the gallery {so many amazing people!}, and artist Trey Speegle was still in town so he stopped by to chat about his work, the book, etc. I also went to a sound studio and recorded the voiceover for the show! You know when you can rent the headset at a gallery to get the details on each piece… yep, I got to record that! Later that night we had Q&A event at the gallery… it was a packed house!

And finally, the badges. I designed these as section headers in the creative talk that I give, and so when Carrie Lederer, the gallery director, asked if I wanted to make anything for their gift shop I said, “YES. Actual, embroidered creative scout badges!” and she made it happen! Originally they were only available at the Bedford, but, I’ve arranged to have them in my online gallery too {$17.50 for the set}, so now anyone anywhere in the world can have them! They’re the merit badges you earn as a creative person. None of us are alone when it comes to asshole-ish inner critics, or being burnt by criticism, or the fact that we love making stuff. We’re all in one giant, supportive, amazing creative club… so put those badges on, and wear them with pride!

Well, there you have it. The show is still up until February 1, so if you find yourself in the Bay Area over the next couple of months you should totally go! Thanks again to the Bedford… Carrie, Eric, Christine… you guys are amazing, and I loved every second of my time with you! xo

ps. Thanks to WCTV for doing this interview/peek inside the show with me!





kim largey

Colorful explosions of paint/ink, and totally controlled graphite living in perfect harmony. Sigh. This is the beautifully composed mixed media work of American artist Kim Largey … she also does some really cool abstract sculpture, but for me, it was all about those very orderly fences holding back that clearly out of control paint. Love.





liesl pfeffer

I wrote about Brooklyn based, Australian artist Liesl Pfeffer YEARS ago. I featured her series of mountain collages, but when I saw this new work, titled “Garden Study”, I knew it was time to write again! I’m seeing cactus and succulents in a lot of work at the moment, but I haven’t come across any others that made out of lakes and skies… sigh… I would love to spend an afternoon in this garden.





jealous curator collection on sebastian foster

I am incredibly proud of this collection. These are the four pieces that I curated for the Jealous Curator Collection on Sebastian Foster this year! Sigh. So many gorgeous pieces… AND, I have to say, these are the nicest group of artists {ps. isn’t it kind of amazing/funny how all of their bio photos match perfectly with their work!?} They’ve been a dream to work with, and I’m so happy that I could share these pieces with you. Our goal was to bring you some very unique pieces, while keeping them very affordable… mission accomplished, yes? Anyway, I just wanted to remind you about them again. There are a few left in each edition… hopefully they’ll wind up under your Christmas tree this year!

no.1 Casey Roberts : Signed & Numbered Edition of 50 // 12″x12″ // $40
no.2 Rebecca Chaperon : Limited Edition of 66 // 8″x10″ // $25
no.3 Hsiao-Ron Cheng : Signed & Numbered Edition of 50 // 11″x14″ // $40
no.4 Brooks Salzwedel : Signed & Numbered Edition of 60 // 11″x14″ // $40