During my time as a greeting card designer, I learned to take seasonal art and make it more versatile.
As you can see below, the original illustration I created was more limiting with the pumpkin in a piece I call Autumn in the Air.
It was a challenge to think what would look good in place of the pumpkin, but then I am a fan of birds. That design element also comes from greeting card design 101; adding live interest to warm up the design.
Years ago, somewhere in the early seventies, I found out that it was common place to see fake pink flamingos decorating lawns in places like Parma, Ohio.
It was a common butt of Cleveland humor along with the chrome balls that decorated the lawns of many Cleveland suburbs. This was an odd sense of Cleveland humor that a girl from New Jersey found somewhat baffling.
When my soon to be boss in the creative department at American Greetings turned 42, plastic pink flamingos appeared in his office and I soon started looking at the pink flamingo in a different light other than a tropical bird one might see in Florida.
Naturally after all these years, when thinking of illustrating another letter F, a pink flamingo came to mind, even though one would not likely see a plastic one as a lawn decoration today.
However, with tropical looks becoming hot, now is surely the time to revive the PINK FLAMINGO.
I looked at a design I did a while ago, as shown below, and it did not look quite finished.
It did not quite pull together for me.
I guess that what happens when you gaze at one's creations while sitting in a tent while doing an art festival. We become our own critic. So I set about to add a bit more drama as well as pull the color story together a bit more.
It will be interesting to see if this one will get a better response with it's new update.
Part of my job in my career as a greeting card designer was to give fresh looks to older designs that still had good bones. It was to give new life or a second wind as well as increase sales. Not unlike rearranging the furniture and painting the walls of one's living room to give it a new spirit.
So while looking at my art on the walls of my tent during art festival season, the older design below became a candidate for a restyle.
While I still carry this version on Fine Art America, I thought to produce another with a different color look.
Now I also offer this cute seal as a cute summer T-shirt.
When sitting in a tent at an art festival selling my art, my art falls under my ever critical eye. This design has now gone under a second change. It was like I had not finished the first revision.
As you can see below I had changed color of the back ground and revised the poppy,
but it stopped there.
The butterfly and the background pattern stayed pretty much the same from the original.
The middle piece was only a transitional piece. It still needed to finish evolving to its new look as I stared at it in the tent. I hope for now that it is done. But who knows. Maybe a year from now, you will see yet another new version.
A while ago, I was talking with a friend whose son's name began with the letter I. Most of my letter I designs are not exactly designed with kids in mind. So finally I got going on the project, and here it is... especially for all the hot whether we have been having this June!
The sun is out after a late spring snow. Fortunately the snow did not stick. The spring flowers are working their way out to the promise of warmer weather today.
The older I get the more I love flowers. They are the sunshine for the soul.
I thought to revisit an early concept of flowers popping out of an envelope. This time I while designing this illustration I gave it the color pop of spring's glory.
I miss the days of when people actually sent letters and cards bearing good news. Today, where most mail is junk and bills, those bright spots of cheer that old fashion correspondence brought are truly missed.
I have noticed when looking at my work at an art festival that I'm doing, I start to pick apart my artwork. I start to think...could I have done this better...would changing a color make it better...and so on.
Believe it or not, the green stems on the original kept bothering me. They seemed out of place.
But then of course I started changing and spiffing up a few other things.
It must be the spring cleaning urge...the urge to not only to clean, but re-arrange the furniture, paint a room, change and shake up the decor a bit...only I have been doing this to my artwork as well.
Home decor has been featuring many hues of gray. When reviewing the original below, I though gray would be good for an update. By adding some more flowers as well as adding soft pastels, it gives my illustration a whole new look.
I am always curious as to how these changes will be received.
I am a designer and illustrator with many years of experience designing in the social expression industry. I have always loved designing and experimenting in all kinds of media my whole life.
When not designing my own work, I work with my husband, illustrator and photographer Norman Drake as co owner of YOURPRECIOUSPORTRAITS.COM.
I would enjoy hearing from you.