Friday, July 23, 2010

Charcoal Drawing

I'll admit it - this has been a tough week for me. I feel stuck for some reason, and I know it's the restless artist in me that is not being creative or challenged enough. I have to admit also that I was freaking out after going to art school and then getting a job that I go to every day that couldn't be farther from art. So I went to Blick on my day off yesterday to buy a pack of charcoal pencils.

I needed to draw. I thought I'd go through some old pictures I took in Italy and make a sketch of something. But after several years of figure drawing and portraiture, I needed to draw a face. And who better than my grandfather, who passed away last September.

I have a couple photos of him that I keep in my shelf along with one of his hats. I saw it and knew I had to draw it. I'm about 2 years old in this picture on Papa's lap, him pointing at the camera for me to look at and smile at the bottom. I have to admit I was a little scared as well - what if after all this time I couldn't do the one thing that I loved so much in this world? What if I couldn't give Papa what it was that made him so special?

You can check out the photo and the drawing and see for yourself. I am so happy with the way it came out - and I have to say, it really was like riding a bike. After the first few lines of suggesting the forms, I got right back into it. I sketched out all of the forms, became obsessed with the shadows. This is what I had gone to school for. This is what I had taken loans against to develop: there's no question in my mind at all that I truly followed my passion. Now I just have to reconcile it with my everyday - if that means squeezing in drawing between my calligraphy jobs, work, and the gym, so be it.

I guess that's all we can really do in life: find what it is that makes us happy, then follow through.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Sales and Marketing Experience: Career Treking

Oh how fondly I remember my Sales and Marketing Class at Tufts within the Entrepreneurial Leadership Program. This class was at 8:30 in the morning; and for the commuting student (me) to get there on time, I had to wake up at 6:00 and be on the train by 7:00. Then I had to catch a shuttle to the building. Fun. The class was taught by the amazing Jack Derby, who I felt slightly intimidated by yet excited to learn from.

I remember sitting in the classroom of 30 Tufts students, brilliant, thinking, "How do I win over my professor, who owns his own multi-million dollar consulting company and has entrusted us with assignments from his own clients, who need a marketing plan?" About four weeks I had found it - my solution; “Disturbia”, by Rhianna.

I'll explain.

We were assigned to real companies (clients of Jack's) to work with as teams to come up with fresh ideas for marketing plans for them. Our company was Career Trekking, a company that specialized in assisting college students in finding their dream careers and jobs. While we definitely pulled all the usual stuff, I wanted to make our presentation awesome.

I came up with an idea of a video for Career Treking after Jack mentioned something in one of his classes: how can you appeal emotionally to your client to have them purchase your product? Well, emotionally, as a college student, I figured it was a safe assumption that college students were afraid. This was a scary time in the economy, and it is still a scary job market. So I took this notion of "Fear", and applied it to a video, taking images and icons from old movies adored by our generation and putting them to appropriate music by Rhianna - a song called "Disturbia".

The company loved my video and ended up putting it up on their website! They've since taken it down, but it was still a moment of intense pride for me, and it was when I realized that I would really love a position in marketing. Now I hold a marketing position within Boston Logic, I am looking forward to a great career in this amazing industry, and I do owe so much to Jack Derby and his intellectually stimulating and invigorating class.

Check out the video and let me know what you think!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Affordable Wedding Calligraphy

I recently completed a custom calligraphy job for a woman named Nina, the owner of an gorgeous and adorable photography blog. Her envelopes called for a custom ink color, as her invitation font was a shade above a deep navy, but not quite royal blue. I mixed a color and used a medium quill pen to deliver these results.

She was also kind enough to take photographs of my work and sent them to me. I just love how she used all those multi-colored stamps on the envelopes - a great idea to make wedding invitations unique (and I must say, definitely "her"!) You can read the full blog post here and check out some more amazing images!

Now I am coming up on the next wedding season - that is, invitations going out for fall weddings. Although, I haven't really had a huge "break" in-between: there's always place cards to do!

Getting married or know someone who is? I specialize in inexpensive wedding calligraphy, Boston. I do rush jobs, custom color mixing, different font thinness / sizes, all with quick 2-3 week turnaround.

For more info, check out my Wedding Calligraphy Services page, or shoot me an email. I've also got a shop on Wedding Wire, and of course, have a few listings of Calligraphy for Wedding Envelopes on Etsy.  I look forward to hearing from you and having the opportunity to make your wedding special :)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Jessica Rabbit Costume For Halloween

So I was in my annual Halloween costume obsession mode this summer, (and yes, I do put together my Halloween costumes the summer before so I have enough time for ultimate awesomeness. Now that I've graduated, that might have changed...) and I decided that this was the year I would be Jessica Rabbit. I've pretty much wanted to be Jessica for quite some time now: I was in Italy last year for Halloween (Yeah, I know, poor me ;) so this year it is ON.

I've even recruited one of my guy friends to come with me as Roger Rabbit!

So here was my issue: finding the dress. I am not as truly blessed chest-wise as Jessica, so that posed a problem of how to hold the dress up - although, how does that thing stay on her? Tape?!

The good news is that because I'm not as well endowed, I think I'll be able to pull this look off without being quite as tacky - because there's nothing to flaunt!

So what did I do? I really wanted to support my beloved fellow handmade etsy sellers, so I put an Alchemy bid on etsy for the dress, and was so pleasantly surprised to see the amount of talented seamstresses that responded! It's such a tough thing to custom-order, but it came down to a seller who had done the dress before and had images. I also didn't want a "costumey" look, because I feel that they look tacky.

I found MsMars, who has a great knack for costumes! I browsed through her Flickr account, and loved what I saw. She's also been great working with me to articulate exactly what I need. The next step is measurements! I hope I can get those right :)

I've also just bought ((and received yesterday EEEEEEEEEEEK!)) these Gabriella Rocha Dancy shoes from You have NO IDEA how difficult it is to find red pumps that are NOT hideous in a size 10.5 wide. Totally obnoxious. And now thanks to adwords, every single web page I go on has shoe advertisements on it. Taunting me.

I tried them on, and I really like the fit - there's a reason they're called "Dancy" shoes. They come in black, too, for everyday interested-pplz. I wore them around today for a bit to try and break them in, and my feet are a bit sore :( hoping this goes away! The shoe goes in slightly at the widest part of my foot, but it really fits my foot perfectly, so I'm hoping that I'll just have to get used to it...if not, Zappos does free exchanges!

So this is my exciting Halloween project. It's never too early to be thinking about - especially when *Boston Costume Contests* are involved...stay tuned, and let me know what you think!

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