Christmas Illustration Challenge on Instagram

Hey folks! December has been busy with custom orders, etsy shop orders and all things Christmas. But i am so happy i decided to try  the holiday illustration challenge that so many of my artist friends were doing. A lot of them committed to a new holiday themed illustration every day of the month, but i went a bit safer and decided to do 12 Days of “Christmas Belles.” You probably know if you follow me that drawing girlies in fun dresses is my fave. So! Here are all the girlies, plus a pattern (maybe for wrapping paper?) created with all of them side by side. Merry Christmas!!

All of these designs are available for licensing. Please get in touch!

Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-FROSTY-IG

Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-RUDOLPH-IG

Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-CandyCane-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-ChristmasTree-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-Snowglobe-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-Gingerbread-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-MrsClaus-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-GIFT-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-ANGEL-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-SantasHelper-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-Mistletoe+Holly-IG Corfee-12DaysOfChristmas-VintageOrnament-IG

And here is the pattern for wrapping paper i made showing all of them together : )

ChristmasBellesWrap

Paint Lab for Kids – My Newest Book!

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December 15 is the official release date for this book that i’ve been waiting for a whole year!

But i have advance copies, signed if you’d like, available in my etsy shop if you want to get yours extra early!

Guys, i am so excited for this book to go out into the world. If you are a parent, teacher, scout leader….anyone who wants to introduce painting and creativity to kids, i think you will find something for you in this book. i’ve tried my best to choose fun subject matter that kids will WANT to paint for each lesson. i’ve kept real life in mind by giving my honest opinion on what supplies you need to start and ways to improvise. i’ve tried to share adaptations for every lesson so that you can ramp it up or simplify it down for all ages. i really poured my heart into it. There are 52 lessons in all, divided into sections titled:

Learning How | Technique Based Labs

Wild Imagination | Idea Based Labs

Palette Play | Color Based Labs

Experimentation Station | Mixed Media Labs

Express Yourself | Inspirational Labs

ALSO!! Every project features a little added bonus. i share a project-related piece from a working artist with the kids. i do this for a few reasons; to add some pretty amazing eye candy to each page and get their wheels turning on how to make each project their own, to show them the many many ways that they can put their creativity into the world FROM FOLKS WHO ARE DOING IT, and to expand their curiosity by having them explore the work of many talented artists from around the globe.

i hope you will enjoy this book. i hope your kids will use it, and gain confidence in their own creative vision. And i really hope it can become a mainstay resource that lives on your bookshelf for many years.

If you would like to share this book on your blog or social media, i would so welcome your support, and would be happy to talk to you if you need me for anything! THANKS! A sneak peek inside is available here.

xo, stephanie

Making Things with Art

i love art on my walls. But after a while, the walls are full and some practical applications for pretty artwork are much appreciated. Here are a few things i made this past week featuring my art ….made useful : )

Hand-painted pillow i stitched up.

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A buddy for the hand-painted pillow; this watercolor girlie i printed onto fabric with my inkjet, then sewed into a huggie.

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Finally, this batch of hand-painted mini canvas ornaments, just in time for Christmas : )

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What do you like to make with YOUR art?

 

 

 

Painting on Periscope

FlowerBundleGirl-Color-WMTrying new things is scary. And that is especially true when the new thing is broadcasting your artwork in progress on Periscope. Have you all tried Periscope? It’s a new app that you can use to show live footage of anything you are doing or seeing. You can walk down the street and take folks “with” you. You can share footage of something cool or funny happening around you. Or, if you like, you can share things about yourself, and your business, and do live painting and sketching demos. Guess which i picked?

So last week and this week i’ve been sharing little glimpses into my process, my favorite art supplies and some rambly, chattering away about whatever i’m demonstrating. The image above is the result of my past few short periscope broadcasts. First i showed how i sketch using a photo reference. Then i showed how i use a lightbox to paint without outlines. Finally today, i showed how i add final touches with pencil and gel pen.  i always post the finished art on my Facebook and Instagram feeds.

But here is the kicker. You have to watch LIVE, or view the replay within 24 hours. After that, it’s gone like the wind…evaporated into thin air. i sort of like that part best – its fleeting. Some folks use Katch.me or other capture apps to save their videos, but i don’t think i will. i like it just how it is.

Now, because its the internet, Periscope has its share of mean, nasty and BORED/BORING trolls who like to throw awful, irrelevant comments into the feed and ruin your day. i had a bad experience last week, so i’ve changed my settings to only allow folks i follow to comment. So sorry if that means any of you may not be able to join the convo – but i find it much less stressful this way.

As a consolation prize to anyone whose lovely comments are being unceremoniously blocked due to my troll force field; i offer you this printable coloring page so you can make your own girlie with a massive bundle of flowers. Just click the image to download.
xo, s

BeYourself-CityKid

 

Painting Frida Kahlo

Hey everyone! i painted a portrait yesterday for the first time in a long time. It was a request. i don’t think i would have done it otherwise. But i ended up having the most lovely afternoon/evening working on it. It was so relaxing and fun. I instagrammed the progress and thought i’d recap here on the blog.

Step 1: printout some photos of the subject (Frida Kahlo) that i found online so i could make a pencil sketch right on the canvas. i always start by drawing the overall face shape, then mapping in a center line and eyeline. Scribbling in the decorative elements quickly is the best way i know how to come up with a balanced composition, even if i don’t follow them EXACTLY in the painting stage.

Frida-SKetchIG

Step 2: Begin painting in large solid areas. i start with the part of the painting that is most challenging. That way, if i stink it up, i haven’t wasted any time on easy parts i could do again without problem. In this case, i started in on the face and hair, then worked in some background.

FridaStep2-IG

Step 3: Finish with the fun details. i saved the floral headpiece, jewelry, clothing and background doodles for last because to me, those are low-stress, easy fun. i’m not worried about symmetry and shading like with the face. i took the painting off the easel and laid it flat for the background swirls so i could turn the canvas as i worked. This part took a while, but was very relaxing. Near the end, my patience was wearing thin and i just wanted to see it complete!

FridaStep3-IG

Step 4: Final Scanning and Digital Editing. When i started this, i had an image of lots of floral layers, very decorative. By the time i got as far as step 3, i was a bit tired and had that “temporary art blindness” we all get. i felt i couldn’t be objective about whether or not to add the flowers to the sides, all around, or what. SO!! i cheated. i scanned in what i had and messed with extra flower placement digitally. This way, i didn’t potentially ruin my hours of work, but could still play and work toward the vision in my head without fear.

Corfee-Frida-IG_smAfter some hours away from it to get “fresh eyes”, i reviewed and made a few tiny tweaks this morning, then sent it off for a client to review.

Standard, classic, oil portraits may not be my “thing”, but i sure did love doing this highly stylized portrait with all the fun decoration. Hope you all enjoy! xo, s

Kids ARt Gallery Wall

KidsGalleryWall

A couple years ago, my husband and i had a whacko Christmas Eve where our younger selves hosted a big family get together, cleaned up, got the kids to bed LATE, then made “ready” for Christmas morning. After that, we transformed part of the kids’ playroom in the basement into a little art room. We had pre-assembled a bunch of IKEA furniture that would hold art supplies and finished art. We got a large round table and chairs, tabletop easels and paints. And we painted this back wall with chalkboard paint, then hung the cables with clips (also from IKEA) to display art.

But we never got to chalking up that big ol’ wall. What can i say? We needed sleep.  What a coupla Bah-Humbugs. … 

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CityKid Style + Me

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photo and styling for all CityKid model photos by Gina Brown of Phoenix Street

When i first started to work as a full time artist, i was lucky enough to begin designing screenprint graphics for some super talented indie clothing designers for kids. One of these AMAZING clients is the uber-talented Claudia from CityKid Style. Do you see those kids in that photo up there? Do they look great or what? Claudia has a great eye for styling. She also has a pretty gorgeous muse in her skater-chic young daughter. Claudia initially contacted me to do a sketch of her daughter! That was our first interaction. We worked so well together, that we just kept doing it. Since then, i’ve designed her new brand logo, hang tags, some web graphics. … 

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Be Brave • Be Kind

Corfee-BeBraveBeKind

i doodled this little painting in my sketchbook last night. It is no more than 4×6, a teeny little frame with words. But the words have been repeating in my head since i put them down. i was talking to my oldest son about being brave in his choices and about being kind and compassionate. He noted to me that sometimes you “kinda have to BE brave to be kind.”

Yeah. He’s in 4th grade. It’s an interesting year of transition for the kids so i hear. We have noticed a bit of exclusion beginning to rear it’s head. It’s not all happy sunshine all of a sudden. i mean, it’s not AWFUL. But you can feel the shift. I think i will make a nicer, neater, LARGER version of this one and hang it on the wall by the front door. A good reminder to start each day.