Thursday, August 27, 2009

art in the pearl – jim brown

I'm very excited for this year's Art in the Pearl, coming up in just a little over a week. It's my favorite art show in the area and I'm already scoping out the artists who'll be showing this year.

Jim Brown is among the over 100 artists who got accepted into this juried show and I can't wait to see what's new. We've purchased several of his pieces over the years, and I still enjoy them as much today as the day we bought them.

His flower series is what first caught our eye. Instead of one large piece, we brought home 5 smaller pieces similar to these and hung them as a grouping.

Then we added a larger piece of his "washers" series, similar to the ones shown here. For several years, it hung in my Defteling Design office until just a few weeks ago, when it moved upstairs. It's now the star of our newly remodeled bathroom (we even installed a special spotlight!)

I remember seeing his tree series last year and being mesmerized by them. Maybe we'll have to add one to our collection this year...

And here's a fun bonus: photos of Jim Brown's pieces hung inside actual living spaces:

All these images came from Jim Brown's website and I assume they're quite representative of what he'll bring next weekend. Getting excited!!!

Saturday 9/5 through Monday 9/7 •
NW Park blocks in Portland, between W Burnside and NW Glisan at NW 8th Avenue

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

cool packaging

One of my favorite things to do whenever I travel is to visit grocery stores and just stroll down the isles to see what catches my eye. I'm such a sucker for good packaging - I'll buy something based on that alone! So I thought I'd share some of my finds from our trip to Vancouver, BC.

The first thing I picked up was this locally made, gorgeous, and delicious chocolate bar. Love the color, of course (orange being one of my faves!), but what struck me was the clean, sleek look of the graphics, as well as the way the chocolate was packaged inside: it sits in a little tray that slides out of the sleeve.

The tray reads "Sleek, slender, easy to hide from your friends" and the chocolate itself has an irregular, angular pattern that is repeated on the front of the package. You can find some here.

Next was a bottle of olive oil from New Zealand that made me smile: what a clever way of playing with the letters! Plus I love green and black – it totally matches my colors of Defteling Design. You can find it here.

And how cool is this bottle of lemon juice from South Africa? I actually like the old-fashioned plastic lemon-shaped bottle, but this updated version is so stylish and modern, I have to replace my old one!

I also spotted lime juice and a caramel and chocolate sauce in similar packaging – yumm to both the packaging and the contents! Find more here.

The artist in me just had to have this strawberry jam:

The box is what caught my attention but when I opened it up and saw that the jam came in a tube with awesome graphics, I was completely sold!

And last but not least, when I spotted these Pantone mugs in a very cool design store, I had to have it. It's not quite "my" PMS color (that's 612, in case you're wondering) but it was close enough – I'm already using it as a pencil cup, given that I don't drink coffee.

And of course, I couldn't leave without a few matching mechanical pencils:

I got these at a fabulous store called Vancouver Special but you can also find them here.

Monday, August 24, 2009

2010 Olympics

While we were on vacation in Vancouver, BC last week, we couldn't help but notice some of the changes that have taken place in preparation of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. The place where this was most noticeable was Whistler.

Todd and I had never been and decided to make the 1.5-hour drive through the gorgeous mountains to check it out. Well, the town itself was a bit disappointing in that it felt too much like a planned community. As we were walking through the pedestrian-only shopping streets, I couldn't help but be reminded of Las Vegas – it all felt a bit fake, despite the gorgeous sunshine and green mountains.

One thing I did love, however, was seeing all the awesome graphics that were created to promote the Olympics.

I love the official logo and all the support materials, right down to the Japanese anime-inspired mascots.

Also love the fresh, crisp color palette of greens and blues mixed with the richly textured illustration style. What a fun project that must have been to work on!

Friday, August 21, 2009

tent sale tomorrow!

I'm busily getting ready for my big Cecily Ink Tent Sale tomorrow – don't forget to carve out a little time to swing by if you live in Portland! I promise you won't regret it: huge savings, everything priced to sell with single cards and gift wrap just $1.00!

Just keep your eyes out for these handmade signs using some of my gift wrap:

And no, Dennis Quaid won't be in attendance, but his photo where he's showing off one of my Fresh Style Card Files will! (see more Cecily Ink celeb photos under the Cecily Ink at Sundance Film Festival category on the right).

Hope to see you Saturday!

TENT SALE: Saturday August 22 • 10am to 2pm
1848 NE 58th Avenue • corner of NE Hancock and NE 58th (between Sandy and Halsey)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

vacation pix

We just returned from a few days of R&R in beautiful Vancouver, BC, and while we're happy to be back home, we do miss that glorious feeling of freedom!

My favorite place to visit is always Granville Island: food and art all in one place! I had every intention of visually documenting our tour among the various food vendors and art galleries but as it turns out, I only snapped a few shots:

I love breads and seeing all these crusty, flakey balls of goodness at Terra Breads definitely made my mouth water! The pizza bianca was so delicious!

And as we passed this pie in the window of a side hallway, I was stunned by its size: this is an 8-inch pan and the pie is at least 6 inches tall!

We shared a plate of cheese and potato pierogies – yumm!

As we ate our snacks outside by the water, we made a new friend of the feathery kind:

And this is what awaited us back at the Pacific Pallisades hotel: a row of six fluffy pillows to rest our weary heads. Sweet dreams!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

save the date

Mark your calendars: I'm having a HUGE blowout tent sale next week Saturday, August 22. I still have Cecily Ink inventory left and need the space.

Swing by and stock up on greeting cards (including letterpress!) for just $1.00 and gift wrap just $1.oo a sheet. I even have some Fresh Style Card Files left – just $10.00 a set! Also invitations, place cards, coasters and wine glass rings – perfect for your next party!

Hope to see you there!

Monday, August 10, 2009

living an artful life

Saturday we stumbled across the Letterpress Printer's Fair and picked up two wonderful broadsides by Sandy Tillcock with Lone Goose Press:

As soon as I saw this illustration, I knew I had to have it – it looks just like one of our dogs, Pogo.

Todd fell in love with this poem and I loved the scale of the piece.

When we came home from the Letterpress Printer's Fair, I found this porcelain wall pillow by Stepanka waiting on our door step (check out her Etsy shop here) :

It's tiny but full of character and I plan to hang it in our new upstairs bathroom as soon as the sky lights are installed (any day now!)

We finished off our art-inspired day by having a simple dinner of crusty bread, mild blue cheese and a yummy olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping. I felt like I was definitely living an artful life as I reached for another piece of baguette that was nestled in one of these wonderful bowls by Alex Marshall (find them at Ink & Peat):

And the art keeps on coming: today I received our prints from another fabulous Etsy seller, Fabienne Labokoff! Todd and I looked at every single one of her prints in her shop before settling on these four:

Can't wait to frame these and find the perfect spot for them – I'm thinking maybe above our bed to mirror the three square skylights that we'll soon be enjoying!

Monday, August 3, 2009

artistically inspired

Last week I had dinner at a friend's whose house I had not been to before. Since she's super creative, I figured I'd like her place, but oh boy, I was definitely not prepared for how incredibly inspired I would be by her home!

Her house had a clean, mid-century vibe overlaid with lots and lots of amazing art, much of which she created herself. Everywhere I turned, I was exposed to new and interesting pieces, ranging from prints, etchings, photography, lithographs, paintings, you name it. I loved how she grouped them, too, sometimes unifying different pieces by using the same color frames, other times just letting their difference in size, shape and color create a visual tension that was very pleasing to the eye.

After dreaming about the art-filled vignettes I had encountered that night, I was determined to expand my own art collection. A little hard to do at the moment: because we're having our siding replaced, we've had to pull everything from the walls, just in case the hammering and banging would knock stuff down.

Nevertheless, I was so inspired that I dragged Todd over to NE Alberta this weekend for a little gallery hopping. It was fun to shop around and see how much creativity Portland has to offer.

I came home with two additions to my collection: my favorite is an etching by local artist Misha Capecchi. I picked it up at Ampersand and later that night came across her work on Etsy.

While at Ampersand, I also found this fun vintage print of a boy in a boat:

I love how the photo damage actually adds a bit of mystery. Although it came matted and ready to frame, I think I'll save it for an art project and alter the matte with some pen and ink sketches.

Ampersand has a fun exhibit right now of old photo booth pictures. Definitely worth checking out:

I also did a little shopping on Etsy and will share those treasures as they hit my mail box!