COLOR January 10, 2014
Do You Think About COLOR??
We are barely over this winter season and so many industries, people, designers and the likes, have been thinking about the world of COLOR for months now. Pantone COLORS are created each and every season. As we enter one season, the next has already been plotted out way ahead of time. Do you often wonder how or where things like this are decided upon? Who really makes all these decisions? How in the world do they all think everyone is going to be on board with these must have COLORS for the new season.
There are COLOR think tanks out there that are all rushing to be on top of the latest and best of anything. If we stop and think about it, COLOR is really based on so many of our daily decisions. The clothes we select each day are based on COLOR. We put together outfits that share the same colors, textures and design patterns. I know some days it is the farthest from my mind, just toss on anything if I am in for a messy day in the studio. Comfy is the only thing I am thinking about…but to be honest, I still look at COLOR. The furnishings decisions in our home, are based on COLOR. Other things do come into play, but COLOR is at the top of the list...
When buildings, offices, stores, anything are developed, color and theme plays a huge role in the outcome of any architect's or developer’s plans. Trust me, the likes of McDonald’s they trimmed their décor in Red/Yellow because they are high energy colors….the term fast food…no lingering here…the drive through windows were created.
When it comes to fine dining the tones are subdued and classy….well thought out…the atmosphere implies a calm and relaxing environment…known to lower your heart rate…lingering is just what the establishment is hoping for. You are greeted by a maitre-d or hostess…no drive thru in sight. Just viewing this picture makes you want to slow down a bit and enjoy….
Yes, COLOR is created to make a statement and impact.
Textures, design patterns, décor, fabric, etc. change with the times. We have seen so many fads come and go. I have seen plenty over my time, but thank goodness some of my favorites have stuck around. As a designer it can become a bit tricky----do we design to please our territory (demographic) customers---the broad array of people (stateside/internationally)---our own customer base (but that changes all the time)----for companies that we work for or are associated with----design what pleases our likes and interests. As a designer, you do have to be willing to become flexible with the ever changing times…even though it just might not feel right. Yes, COLOR is playing a role once again.
COLOR is a wonderful thing…can you imagine the world and what it would look like without the palette of colors? Just like years ago, you could only view your TV in Black/White.
Oh the stories were wonderful but then this happened….
What a difference the world became. Such beauty…COLOR…..
Someone once told me, “If you Create and Paint from the Heart, everything else will fall into place”. So very true, even though now and then we have to bend a little.
Here is a design I created several years ago…Do you see a resemblance in the Brand New Pantone Spring COLORS for 2014? You betcha…everything always comes full circle and COLORS are no different. 67 days and Spring will be upon us...Enjoy....
Happy Painting….enjoy and surround yourself in COLOR…..
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Happy New Year January 9, 2014
Happy New Years to you all. Today marks the first complete week of this brand new year and month. Have you all collected your thoughts on the goals you want to set for yourself in 2014? Now is the time. As you all can see for yourself, my blog has not seen a post in quite some time, but that is about to change, starting right now.
I took a day right after Christmas to reminisce and ponder over all my Face book posts I made throughout 2013 and I realized how important written words and photos really are in one’s life. There were plenty of events I had no problem remembering, but various forgotten ones came floating back once I re-read my posts and scanned over my zillion photos. Many of you might find it a bit odd that I like to share my life happenings (both personal/business)….family issues/events…..adventures….ups/downs, but for me, it gives me a lot of peace and calm in my life. I found that writing was another creative outlet, when painting was not always possible. Even when I am knee deep in deadlines…designing….editing etc. I find the time to share with you a little something about this Ordinary Artist…Business Owner…Daughter…Sister...Wife…Momma…Memere (aka Grandma)…Designer…Teacher….and a passionate person, when it comes to just about anything in life.
I purchased this little book through Amazon (actually it was a gift to me) entitled, Jane-a-Day 5 Year (yes that is right 5 years) journal…this ought to keep me busy. Great way to start or end my day and I intend to use this for my daily quick thoughts (hmmm…me quick and short)…post mishaps…things to work on….what might have gone wrong…just anything that I find important to make things better. The book is very tiny (actually thought it was a lot bigger) no problem, it will pop right into my tote bag or purse. I will never be at lost for words (*wink*)…Stopping laughing...what can I say it is an inherited gift...Thanks Mom!...
I hang a huge calendar every year in my office. I do not do well with a calendar that is behind a cupboard door or not in clear view. I check it first thing in the AM. I promise the calendar does start with January....♥
My special journal for the year and it will be a place where I will sketch out my design thoughts…write notes to my grand kids and loved ones. Joint down ideas for the website…blog…Face book posts.
I think I have enough to keep my CREATIVE GOALS Moving and Grooving in 2014….
The words I wrote throughout 2013 gave me a great deal of needed strength. When I thought there was none to be had; I found out differently. I know I can revisit each post I wrote and all the memories will flood right back. Nothing will be forgotten. It is always there to remind me of the challenges I faced, but realizing I came away such a better person. It might not always be the case, but learning and experiencing is what life is all about. We might not get all the answers that are wanted right then and there, but over time it will happen.
Life, and all the goals we want to achieve, dreams to chase after, desires we truly want, challenges we want to overcome, can be possible if we see our written words and goals each and every day. Trust me when I say, “You will find out that you are not alone.” So many among us are riding the same life and creative roller coaster, but it is so much better when you are sharing the same seat.
So let us all share this year of written words and most of all our CREATIVE GOALS…I am so ready to see where this roller coaster ride takes us…Are you ready for a fabulous year my friends? You all have given me so much in 2013…mostly your thoughts…lending ear….compassion…patience and most of all your friendship. For that I cannot say THANK YOU enough.
Here is a little something for you all to save or print out. I want you to write down all your goals for 2014.
Creative Goals (pdf)
I have also provided a line drawing without color so you can create something special...paint it on watercolor paper, wood, masonite or cardstock. Make it yours...
Line Drawing (pdf)
Place it where you can see it every single day. Challenge yourself to stick to your DREAMS…DESIRES…HOPES…
Have COURAGE…BELIEVE in yourself…but most of all be CREATIVE…..So let’s buckle up...strap ourselves in tight and take this ride together. Look forward to sharing this journey with you all....
Until next time...Create always with a happy heart....Kim
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THOUGHTS and TIPSTER TUESDAY May 1, 2012
FINISHED DESIGN TO CREATING A PATTERN PACKET
Hi my friends, thanks for coming back for a visit. As mentioned in my last post I promised I would guide you through how I take my finished original paintings and create a pattern packet for you all to enjoy. So here I am ready to take you on my pattern packet making journey. This is how I decided I wanted my pattern packet line to be developed and my process works for me, but might not be the best way for you. I am providing suggestions and ideas. I too have made changes along the way. Change is good….means we are getting better at what we do. Or better yet I/we paid close attention to our customers and students. They are our best critics.
I have to confess when I developed my very first pattern packet I had no clue as to what I was doing or what direction I wanted to take. Just knew I wanted to be different. The following thoughts traveled through my mind as I dove into this new adventure:
Will my customers or students understand what I am trying to tell them?
Will my directions be easy to follow?
What kind of format do I want to use for my pattern packets?
Do I need to tell them everything, brush size, where, when, how and why?
Should I worry about how long the directions will become?
How do I want to package my pattern packets?
Will they like what I have to offer?
At the beginning I did put together a rough draft as to how I wanted things to look.
Page layout… fonts… spacing… format… instructions… line drawings
Over time I have made quite a few changes but have never, ever lessened my directions. I have altered my formatting because it was taking me way too long to type and proof read my patterns. I was using too many bullets and lots of times I would miss things as I proofread my work. Now I use the Step 1, 2, 3, etc. I write the directions in the same manner as I paint each element.
When I first decided to design and create pattern packets I knew right away I wanted everyone to be able to paint my designs. Yes I am DETAILED (do you think?!!), it has become who I am. So with that said, I felt it was essential to make sure everyone was being told how to paint what I did, let them know what brush, and how, when, where or why I did what. I include a technique guide in every single pattern packet I create so if you just have no clue as to what I am trying to do you can refer to this handy guide. It goes into a lot more detail of each technical process I use throughout my designs.
As I am painting my new design I write down everything on a note pad. I do not go into detail at this point, but just write down what I need to remember. I never, ever rely on my memory and think I will be able to write my directions just by looking at the final painting. Not a good habit and it will take so much longer to write the directions. It is not fair to your customers or students to miss important steps or skip things just because you cannot remember what you did. There have been times I have repainted an area just because I failed to take good notes. I occasionally type my notes on my laptop but I lack table space, so find my note pad serves me well.
One thing I find important is to write down all the colors of paint that I used within the design. I actually keep these colors in a container and label it with the project name. I also place a paint swatch next to each color listed on my note pad. It just helps to make sure I do not forget to list any colors in my palette supply list or directions.
The past few years I am doing step by steps of all my designs. I just shot the pictures right at my painting table as I go along with my painting. I know this might sound like a lot of work but trust me it has helped me in so many ways. Not only does it help in the writing of my directions, but maybe my notes do not make sense and now I have another reference to jar my memory. Also the step by steps has become good tools in the classroom. Sorry about the poor picture I shot the picture right from my computer screen.
My directions are now completed and the proofreading begins. I print out a set of instructions so I can make all necessary corrections. I check my palette, supply list, preparation, formatting and all else that is needed. I then go back to my computer and go page by page to type in my corrections. I proof through my directions several times. Yes, I am crazy like that. I am human and after all this proofreading I still can miss something. It is a good idea to have someone else (preferably another painter) to read over the directions. They might find something that you missed.
My directions are proofed and complete. Now it is onto the inking of the designs. Before I spray varnish my painting I take the project and place it onto the glass portion of my copy machine. I cover it with a piece of fabric because most of the times I have to leave the lid open. I then proceed to make a color copy of the project. Make sure you see all areas of the project on the copy. Make necessary adjustments.
You will need a light box. I have two sizes one to fit 8 ½-in. X 11-in. and 11-in. X 17-in. paper. I take the color copy and tape it onto the light box. Place a white sheet of copying paper over the color copy and then tape into place. Best to only tape it down in a couple of spots just in case you want to lift to review the inking process. I turn on the light box and begin inking. I do find I have to shut off my lights in my studio so I can see thru to the color copy. I have found this process to be a huge help in not forgetting any details or areas of the design. I have a C-Thru ruler handy to make sure all my lines stay straight. Sometimes I will use a pencil to trace some of the areas and then ink after I remove the paper from the light box. I find it easier to control my straight lines or a more detailed area.
A few years ago I started inking a base coating guide and this has really been a big help especially during a seminar. The students do not need to worry about the details at this point and much easier to determine what needs to be traced onto their project. Also, if you have a beginner student they could just use this base coating guide and forfeit the details until they become more comfortable with their abilities.
For the base coating guide I ink all the areas of the design, minus the details. It is like a blocked design, what you would see in a coloring book. Before I continue on with the next inked patterns I take 2 copies of the base coating guide--will be used for the detail and value placement guide.
I take the copy of the base coating guide and ink my value placement guide. A little suggestion when I am inking the Value Placement chart, I go back to my completed pattern packet and read each step as I am inking the shading, highlighting, tints etc. I know I will not miss anything. I also have my painted project handy during this process. When complete, I sign and set it aside.
I take a copy of the inked detail guide and follow the same process as above to complete the final line drawing. This inked design includes crosshatching, dots and final details. Hope my inking process makes sense. Sounds like a lot of work but it really is not.
Now time to create my front cover. I have a template that I have created on my computer so all I have to do is cut and paste. Easy….but I make sure to change any or all information for the new design. I like to make each front cover special for each design. Like to change things up, but can easily just have one design for all pattern packets.
I am now ready to take my photos. Oh hum….have to admit this is the most stressful part of the whole pattern packet process. I give my painted piece only one light coat of varnish. I never, ever varnish my pieces with several coats of varnish because it will produce poor photos with lots of shine. However, a light coat helps to pop the colors because acrylic paint has a tendency to be flat. I take numerous shots at all angles. I take all photos outside, hopefully on a cloudy day. I make sure I have a great front cover photo. Remember that is the first thing customers and students see. I then edit my photos and select which ones I want to reprint. I then find a very good photo processing center and have my prints made. Thank goodness for the digital world. What a huge time saver.
Pattern is typed, proofread and completed. All guides and line drawings are inked. Photos complete. Now it is time to copy my new pattern packet. I use the two-sided process when copying my patterns (saves lots of paper) and then copy my guides and line drawings. I have selected to place all my pattern packets in plastic sheet protectors. There are other options.
Now I am ready to present my designs to the public… Opened my website www.Heavenlyheartcreations.com on December 5, 2011. So much more to be done on the site, but I want to thank you all for your support.
I attend several conventions throughout the US and I am always so humbled by all of my fellow painters and it is because of you that I keep on designing.
I knew right away that several people do not get the opportunity to paint with a teacher every week, or take classes, seminars, and attend conventions on a regular basis. I wanted to become that paper classroom and become their behind the scenes teacher. I not only love to paint and design but most of all I really love teaching. I told myself I wanted my pattern packets to be packed with as much information as possible. I wish we all could get the chance to paint with each other along the way. I am always telling my students, my designs are detailed but they are not hard. It is the tricks of the trade and learning how I do things and it will be so much easier for you to realize you can paint anything.
I, along with my fellow designers work so hard at creating something different, unique and interesting to share with the painting world. It is so important to know what goes into designing just one design, pattern packet, a booklet or a book. The process just does not happen overnight and hours of hard work goes into a design even before it is released to the public. We all design these special projects to share with our painting community. Our world is now so different because we are surrounded by so many things via the internet, blogs, Face book and websites. But it is important to respect these designers, artists, creators, teachers and writers because we want these creative people to continue sharing with all of us and be our inspiration. Stay true to yourself and be you!!!! Stop and think about your fellow artist.
Thank you all for giving me the opportunity to do what I LOVE… I BELIEVE we all have a place in this creative market and I hope I have given you a little more insight into my design world.
Paint always with a Happy Heart,
KimLeave a Comment →
BAG OF DREAMS April 23, 2012
BAG OF DREAMS
Got my PAINTWORKS magazine in my mailbox the other day, did you? If so you noticed the project I did alongside Gisele Pope, is now up on their website as a free project download. Bag of Dreams was taught at the Creative Painting convention in Las Vegas as a Special Event. Thank you so much to our sponsors Loew-Cornell, DecoArt, Paintworks, and Brushes and More. With your continuous support we were able to present a fantastic class to all the students in attendance. The event was a huge success, so thank you to each and every one of our students who participated in our event. It was overwhelming, exciting and plain good fun. Best way to begin the week at convention.
I know several of you were unable to participate due to the fact the class was SOLD OUT. With that said, here is your opportunity to download your pattern for free at Paintworks and paint your own tote. Click here for easy access to the pattern and design or here for a PDF download.
The tote bag kits are now available for purchase at our store. Click here and it will take you to the location. There is a brief description of the design, a link to the Paintworks free pattern section and information regarding what is included with your Tote Kit purchase. I will also send along a copy of my original set of directions and a little surprise.
BAG OF DREAMS Tote Bag Kit (#101-Kit)
Depending on where you live once you check out and I receive your PayPal payment I will make any necessary adjustments on the shipping charges. At the moment we are experiencing a slight glitch on a single item tote bag purchase and the shipping charges through PayPal. All refunds on shipping overage have been issued promptly. Appreciate your understanding in this matter. Learning curve at the moment and it brings me back to the first time I ever picked up a paintbrush and I knew I had lots to learn.
We will ship the kits Internationally please inquiry.
Thank you everyone for your constant support and interest in my designs.
Grab a tote kit, paint her up and then you will have a place to store that journal of sketches and dreams. Remember those sketches become designs.
Be creative my friends and always remember to paint with a happy heart…
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SKETCHES TO FINAL DESIGNS April 20, 2012
SKETCHES TO FINAL DESIGN
I am a day late with my Thoughts and Tipster Thursday post. I would like to get started with a quote for us to think about.
I am always thinking and dreaming. The most important thing for me is to act upon those dreams and do something creative everyday.
Let us venture into my design world.
I am asked all the time how did that design come about? What made you think of that? Do you always have a plan or subject matter in place before you begin? Do you design from a set up, from objects in your home, photographs or just go for it. My response to these questions, are yes and no. Might not sound like a good answer, but it is accurate.
This method works for me but it does not necessarily mean it will work the same for you. Hopefully my method might assist you with your creative process.
Before I ever begin designing, I think of a surface that I want to paint on. I might select a surface I have on hand (I have plenty) or construct something brand new. Nice to have access to a 24/7 woodworker. Even though he has a tendency to say to me, “You want what and when?” I am always thinking different. A clever new surface makes a new design stand out and I think it is essential to not only think of the design, but its surroundings. Keep in mind that a different surface will attract student’s and/or customer’s eyes. Make that surface become a component of the design.
Next I choose a theme that I want to design and it might be a still life, sampler, seasonal, whimsy, or realistic. My surface always plays into my selection. If I decide I want to design a seasonal project then the surface might become interchangeable so I know it is important to think ahead.
Surface and theme is now selected, let the drawing begin. A little hint, I generally always have the main object already thought out. It might be a house, crock, snowman, or lantern (just to name a few) then the design is built around the main object.
For many years I have kept journals full of thumbnail drawings, large sketches, color ideas, quotes or anything else that might lend a hand in my creative process. I now have 4 jammed packed journals. I will be creating and painting until I am 100 years old. Yes I have that much stuff among the pages of these journals.
It is not imperative to be perfect when keeping the above journals because it is your reference guide. It is amazing how just a scribble or comment can spark the best design ever. Lots of times I get the ideas from these sketches and begin my line drawing. Before the final line is ever drawn on the paper I have made many changes along the way. Funny, once you get started with your drawing your creative mind begins to work overtime. I am forever telling myself, “Stop thinking about it, just do it!”
I almost never draw from a set up. I might look at things for a reference but really never set objects up in my studio. Not sure why, but have to admit I have a harder time controlling my perspective. Yes, I do occasionally draw from a photograph I have taken, but my favorite thing to do is just go for it. With all the rules out there it might not be the best way, but it has always worked for me.
I have a huge plastic graph (vertical/horizontal lines) and I place it onto my painting table. I take a sheet of 8 ½ X 11-in. or 11 x 17-in. copying paper (larger if needed) and tape it down onto the plastic graph. It is a perfect guide to keep all my lines straight where necessary. I then trace the shape of the surface I have selected onto my paper. I find this to be very important to make sure the design fits within all areas. Many years ago I used to only draw the main object onto the paper and then design as I go, but now I design the entire project (minus all the details) and then transfer it to the surface. Does not mean that I never alter things along the way and trust me there have been many changes once I start the base coating or painting process. There is times where things just do not fit or work within the design. Nothing wrong with that, no one will ever know.
I have to confess the hardest part for me and what I dread the most is the background color/technique and the finishing touches to be done on the main surface (frame, box etc.) One of the reasons is because I am always thinking different. It is funny but lots of times I use a very neutral or dark background. This makes it easier to establish the palette for the design and to select the base coating colors. Best to think outside the box and I try to move outside my favorite palette of colors. I keep in mind always; I am designing for you not me. I like to design a wide variety of subjects. It makes designing enjoyable.
Before I proceed to transfer the line drawing to my surface I proof and finalize the entire pattern. Have to be cautious because one crooked line, distorted object, incorrect perspective and certain elements can throw off the entire design. Yes, designers are human and errors can be made, but before I sign my name to my work, I take the time to make sure I provide the best line drawing possible.
Once I am pleased with my line drawing, I proceed to transfer the design to my selected surface. Now on to my next challenge, the selection of the base coating values. A very essential step because it is going to set up the feel of the entire project. I always think medium values when I select my palette. It gives me a broader range to establish good value changes on all objects. This is another area that I have been known to change things up if necessary. As I build my design with paint, sometimes what I thought would work does not. I have talked about color in a few blog posts and it might be a good idea to re read these posts. I love color and lots of times I do things through trial and error. Hey if one thing does not work, I do not give up I just go forward with another idea.
Starting a couple of years ago, as I paint each step I would stop and take pictures. The process sounds time consuming but in the long run it saves time. Once my painting is completed I will then go in and edit my step by step photos and put them in order. They will become great reference tools.
I always have the hardest time calling it quits. I always say, “Oh just one more thing, more details and more color here”. Without details, my paintings would not be me. Before I call it quits I do take pictures or place the project onto my printer glass and print out a few copies. Helps me to determine anything I might have missed and lots of times I can detect areas in a photo that need adjustments. I paint long hours and lots of times when I have been looking at a painting for an extended amount of time I miss things.
Lots of times I will set the painting aside for a few days and then revisit it. If I am happy then I sign it and begin the next step. I am now ready to put my new painting into a pattern packet. Come back to visit me and I will share my pattern packet process.
Thanks my friends for taking the time to read about my design process. It is because of you that I keep challenging myself. I appreciate your support and interest in my designs.
Until next time Paint always with a happy heart…..
KimLeave a Comment →