In the studio: more shoes!

13 09 2017

And one more shoe illustration share from my days working right after college at Jones & Jones, an upscale department store in McAllen, Texas

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

WEB Clutch & Shoes

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In the studio: shoe study

12 09 2017

I think I was in high school or early years of college when I drew this study of my (sturdy looking things, aren’t they?!) shoes. It was done with Conté crayons and charcoal on a sheet of Carson Mi-Tientes drawing paper.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

WEB LacedShoes





P. Allen Smith’s Garden Home at Moss Mountain Farm, Part 5

14 12 2012

One of my favorite highlights of the tour was P. Allen’s detached art studio with windows overlooking the gardens and French doors opening onto the lawn behind the screened porch. Sue dared me to paint something on the blank watercolor paper pad and I was so tempted. Now I wish I had (and signed it)! Although he professes to “just dabble,” he is a talented artist (something I didn’t know about him!). The large American vegetable paintings hanging throughout the house and lining two walls in the “dinner barn” are his work (photos to come).

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

ArtStudiolorez





Celebrate Home Magazine interviews Lucile Prache, watercolor artist

14 10 2012

Last month I interviewed Parisian artist Lucile Prache for our inaugural issue of Celebrate Home Magazine, which Barbara Kelley and I launched just two weeks ago. I found Lucile’s illustrations on etsy.com and had her store bookmarked because I love her sketchy, whimsical illustration style. I contacted her and she agreed to be interviewed for our magazine. Click on the link below to download the magazine to see more of Lucile’s lovely artwork.

CelebrateHomeMagFall2012 Spreads

Lucile’s Kitchen

When did you first discover your creative talents?
I have been drawing since my early childhood and found it quite natural to express myself in this way as I grew in a family with an artistic mood. I was very shy and I guess it was helpful to draw instead of talk.

Did you go to school for art?
Yes, I studied at the ESAG art school (also known as Penninghen) in Saint Germain des Prés in Paris and graduated—a long time ago.

Did you inherit your artistic talents from your parents?
Yes, I surely did. My father is an architect and my mother has always been making pottery (both are part of the flower power generation!).

When did you know that you wanted to be an artist (illustrator)?
I didn’t really feel like a fine artist because at art school we learned to be illustrators. Plus, I had been working for magazines, the fashion industry, and in advertising for such long time, I didn’t feel like a fine artist.

I still do these types of projects, but I love painting for my Etsy world-wide customers. Having a large audience is important for me—I don’t think “real” artists need that. Knowing that someone in Japan and someone in New York is looking at my artwork at the same time just makes my day!

How long have you been working as a freelance artist and illustrator?
I have been a freelancer for almost 25 years.

I love the fresh, loose, sketchy style of your illustrations. Did the evolution of this style come easily to you?
Thank you so much! I think I have always sketched in this style because I love travel journals (specifically Cy Twombly and Jean Michel Basquiat art). I have been very interested in Chinese calligraphy and started to learn with a Chinese teacher. He always told his French students that they never would become Chinese even after 100 years, but this could be helpful for our very Western style; I believe this is true—my work has become looser and fresher since I began studying Chinese calligraphy.

How would you describe your illustration/painting style?
I want my paintings to look carefree and happy. I have been studying ballet since my childhood, and I believe that my illustrations are just like dance pieces—everything appears to be easy. Dancers are always smiling on stage, but there is a lot of work behind the stage.

Your illustrations are unique and full of energy. Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspiration comes from real life—typography on labels, dirty papers on the sidewalk (yes, I am a Parisian!), kitsch postcards of Brooklyn, a vibrant green top on a girl in the street, vintage books of English china, figs at the market—almost any image can inspire me!

What mediums do you work in other than watercolor? Do you have a favorite brand of watercolor paint? Favorite brushes and paper?
I work a lot on my Cintiq Wacom pen tablet with Photoshop when I get jobs for fashion, magazines and advertising clients. When painting with watercolor, I love Windsor and Newton because of their amazing fresh colors. I am painting with Chinese brushes on French BFK Rives paper.

I decided to leave my Wacom tablet and my computer for a while and went back to colored pencils, gouache and watercolor again. I missed the “real taste” of different papers and pigments. The printing process means CMYK colors. Original paintings allow gold, silver, fluo paintings and this just makes my day!

Do you create still life set-ups of fruits and vegetables from which to reference? What is a typical work day like?
Sometimes I stumble upon beautiful fruits or vegetables at the market and paint them before cooking them. Most of the time I reference photos or browse online for inspiration when I don’t have time to go to Chinatown and purchase Asian food for a still life set-up.

Do you do any computer illustration?
Yes, I do. It is exciting to use several devices. I work in Corel Painter, Illustrator and Photoshop on an old Mac Pro. These software programs allow me to paste labels, type and photographs into my illustrations.

What do you like most about being an illustrator?
Illustrators have freedom—this is what I like most; but we know that we sometimes have to pay a huge price to keep this freedom.

Has illustration as a profession changed over the years?
It has. Computers and the Internet changed everything. I started my career before the Internet, and I remember I had to go to Marie Claire magazine and deliver my orders in person. It was quite fun because I could talk with the art director and the redaction team. We knew each other quite well. I loved to walk in Paris from my studio to my clients, but it was time-consuming, too.

We are now networking and it is completely different, but I really enjoy the friends I’ve met around the world because of Etsy. I am meeting them sometimes in Paris, or more recently in New York, and I love this!

How long have you been selling on Etsy? Has it been a good way to get your work out to buyers?
I started selling on Etsy more than two years ago and it completely changed my life! It is always very exciting to add new paintings, communicate on Facebook and blog about the process. I am absolutely thrilled to get many buyers from all around the world—mainly from the United States. It is a delight to keep in touch with so many open-minded, cool and positive people.

Do you pursue other creative endeavors?
I like screenprinting and can’t wait to work on new designs but I need time and energy—and not to be too hungry because my screenprinting studio is my kitchen.

You are surrounded by amazing museums, which must be an inspiration to you. Tell me a little bit about life in Paris and your family. Did your children inherit your talent for art?
My children are geeks and creative ones! Please come to Paris and see how we live. After spending two weeks in New York City, Paris seems to me like a small village of farmers, But I definitely love Paris—I get inspiration from the street equally as from the museums. I plan to go and see the Gerard Richter exhibition in le Centre Pompidou tomorrow. I always forget how I can be stunned by painting in a peaceful place like a museum. I am in love with my city, but I am always dreaming of elsewhere…and I swear I will try to improve my bad English. But luckily, the language of images is international.

I noticed on your blog that you also are an avid gardener. How does gardening influence your love of illustrating food?
My garden is located on a wet and sunny island, so I only see my garden four to six weeks a year and it doesn’t take much care. I wish I had a vegetable garden and could watch it grow but it is impossible for a Parisian work addict. Too bad, because it would be very inspiring. I paint fruits, vegetables, cakes because of their beauty, but also because I enjoy cooking.

What are your influences? What artists inspire you?
I was first influenced by rock music and pop art artists such as Andy Warhol, Basquiat, Jasper Johns, Rauschenberg, French artist Hervé Télémaque, Tadanori Yokoo, Joan Mitchell—I love them all.

What are you working on now?
I just finished a collaboration with a French publisher on a cookbook about Italian food. It is a very exciting project.

I will be working for a fashion agency in late October, but currently I want to add new prints and paintings in my Etsy shop. I would love to publish my own recipe book and make it available for Christmas, but I am sure I won’t have time this year.

If you weren’t an artist what would you be?
I would be a (bad) dancer.

Any advice for aspiring illustrators?
Keep your eyes wide open unless you are asleep.

Describe yourself in three words.
Still always curious

No interview would be complete without this requisite question—You’re stranded on a deserted island. What five things must you have?
Five cards of Raoul Dufy flowers, then find a way to make tools and do mineral painting—let’s get to work!

www.etsy.com/shop/lucileskitchen

luciles-kitchen.blogspot.fr/

www.facebook.com/pages/Luciles-kitchen/197554960274042?sk=wall

Click the link below to download a two-page spread pdf of Celebrate Home Magazine:

CelebrateHomeMagFall2012 Spreads

Click the link below to download a pdf designed for single page printing:

CelebrateHomeMagFall2012 Pages

Want to order a print copy of Celebrate Home Magazine? Click here, then sign up for a free magcloud.com account. You can download the FREE pdf or purchase a print copy on this link.





I know what you can buy me for my birthday next month! :-)

12 09 2011

How uber cool is this? Thanks to my friend F.T. for sharing. Click on the link below to see the newest product from Wacom!

http://www.wacom.com/en/Products/Inkling.aspx?utm_source=Google&utm_medium=Search&utm_campaign=Inkling&gclid=CJzv4c-Pk6sCFcis7QodeHrl6Q





Sharing a little link love…

1 08 2011

Sculptor/lighting artist David Wiseman creates some of the most beautiful home accessories I’ve ever seen. Look at his ceiling art here, a beautiful copper fireplace screen here and lovely branch-inspired lighting here. I’m even partial to his whimsical “collage chandelier” with its chain-woven spider web here.

Johnny Swing creates the most amazing furniture out of unexpected materials—glass jars, windshields and my favorite—coins. I love the “Quarter Chair,” made of 1,200 quarters! I would imagine you would want to keep this piece indoors—can’t you just imagine how hot it would get on a scorching summer day? Take a look at the “Nickel Couch,” made of approximately 7,000 nickels!

Corey Frye‘s blog, A French Frye in Paris, will take you on the journey of a 33-year-old New Yorker who married a Parisian girl, then headed for France in early 2010. He prose is witty and lively and the accompanying photos are wonderful. He takes you along on field trips all around the city, sharing history, romance, little-known facts, and funny stories about learning how to speak French with his in-laws and other extended family. I subscribe to his blog and every time he writes, I long to be in Paris!

On the arts & craft front: When I’m on a sewing binge, I frequently check out the new projects on www.sew4home.com. The projects are all relatively easy—a plus when you have multiple hobbies and never enough time to encompass them all. And on the subject of sewing, check out fiber artist Miyuki Sakai‘s amazing work here. She’s not your average illustrator—her drawing medium is thread! Her work has been featured in Martha Stewart Living, Country Home, Vogue, Seventeen and other magazines. She shares her secret: a portable straight stitch sewing machine, ordinary cotton blend fabric, extra ordinary sewing thread and magic hands. I’ll say!

And finally, I’d like to build one of these on a tiny bit of land (preferably with a view, or on a lake, or near the water) in each of the following states: Arizona, Colorado, Maine, Oregon, Washington state and Texas. I would then fly between each of those states, visiting to photograph each area in the best weather conditions and peak blooming times. I realize that I can’t store thousands of books in one of these (hmmm….but I could build a separate one just to house a library (and gardening tools…and photography equipment…and craft supplies…and…)! Designer Jay Schafer sells plans for houses ranging from 65 square feet (!) to 837 square feet (and some are even portable).





Just another Saturday night at Borders…

25 07 2010

At Borders, armed with a 40% off coupon and deciding what to use it on—love those 40% off-ers! I whittled down the stack of “chosen ones” and purchased this book, Botany for the Artist: An Inspirational Guide to Drawing Plants, by Sarah Simblet. Fantastic book, gorgeous botanical drawings and lots of tips. Stay tuned for my first attempt at a botanical drawing (goodness knows, I most certainly have enough floral photo references in my only library, don’t I?). I’m even wearing my botanical sandals in this shot! Photo taken with Michael’s iPhone

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.