It’s Fall Y’all!

It’s Fall. Time for boots, sweaters and pumpkin everything!



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Adding texture to digital art

add_texture_in_PhotoshopIn the previous post you saw the photos from the “banana-themed” wedding style shoot that I designed the invitation suite for. I have been asked how I created the texture on the leaves and thought it would be a great tutorial to show you. You can create these leaves by taking your scanned drawings into Illustrator and Photoshop and applying a few tricks.


First I sketched several leaf shapes. Nothin fancy. I used pencil and markers.sketchesAfter scanning, I opened them up in Illustrator and live traced it.

  1. click on the scan
  2. click on the “image trace” button at the top in the menu
  3. click on “black and white logo”
  4. click “expand”

Sometimes I use different settings in live trace but because these are simple black and white drawings the special settings aren’t necessary.

livetraceexpand_livetraceexpandedOnce you have it expanded you now have vectorized art to work with. Your drawings are now digitized and can be manipulated. Here I recolored them and positioned them on top of one another.vector_with_colorThe texture is cool but I wanted to do more with it. I copied and pasted the leaves into a Photoshop document (set to the card size at 300 DPI). When I paste them in I paste them in as a “Vector Smart Object” so I keep the leaf in vector. vector-in-PhotoshopHere I painted different green paint colors on watercolor paper with a palette knife. Nothing fancy here either. Just creating texture I can drop into my leaves.paintedtextureUsing the lasso tool I selected a section of the paint texture that will fit over this particular leaf and dragged it onto the page. I named that layer “texture”.textureinPSD I applied the texture to the leaf shown here:

  1. hold option key between the “texture” layer (what I named the paint layer) and “Vector smart object (leaf layer).
  2. Once you see an arrow come up click. The texture will go into the shape of the leaf!applytexture_PhotoshopI selected different sections of the painting and applied it to several random leaves. Lessen the opacity to bring out the green of the leaves and voila!finishedcardI  added a linen texture I made (drawing random horizontal and vertical lines in Illustrator), lettering and type to complete the invitation suite. Here’s the final. Pretty cool huh?Bananas_invite

Photos by megtsang and me

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swizzlesticks_bananasWhat a fun shoot to be a part of! The genius of event planner, Andrea, of Party Task Force was evident in this “Bananas-themed” wedding style shoot. Not only was I asked to design the invitations, letter the placecards AND real bananas but I was a model!

If you check out the post on Grey Likes there is one shot with me in it (sigh) but here I included some of the photos that didn’t make the post! Take a look below to see how this off-beat concept was beautifully executed. (Oh – that’s my hand above!)

placecardsplacecards2Here are the placecards (cut with a Cricut machine) and lettered by me! I love how the vibrant colors look against the white wall with the texture of the yellow wire circles. Such a clever idea for a placecards display.

wedding_cakeThe tablescape was a graphic black and white with pops of green and yellow. So good!

WeddingCouplebridesmaidsLook it’s me!

Bananas_inviteHere is my invite and save the date! They were so much fun to make. ***Come back FRIDAY and I will give you tips on how it was designed!

Here are some photos that you didn’t see!


The talented team: Photographer: MEGAN TSANG STUDIO // Event Planner, Styling & Props: PARTY TASK FORCE // Co-Producer, Location Rentals: PREMIERE EVENTS  // Florals: VELVETLEAF STUDIO // Invitation & Menu Design, Calligraphy: JEANETTA GONZALES // Hair: KRYSTAL HARRIS // Make-up: RISA RODRIGUEZ // Bride: DESIRÉE ANDERSON // Groom: Richie Chance // Groom’s Suit: THE BLACK TUX // Bridesmaid:JEANETTA GONZALES // Swizzle sticks: THE ROC SHOP // Venue: LOT 613

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What I’m Loving: Fashion Illustration



You may know that this week is New York Fashion Week. I love seeing the photos of the runways on social media. I am not a big fashionista but find these shows to be inspirational eye candy, bubbling over with creativity, color palettes, texture and of course celebs galore. In honor of the event, here is a smattering of some fashion illustrations that I am drooling over. (top image: the amazing Cecilia Lungren)


OMG. What technique in this mixed media piece from Lola Donoghue! Her hair looks like cotton candy!jessicaDurrantIllustrator, Jessica Durant, has a way of capturing a mood with her gestural strokes. These ladies look like they are feeling the moment.

Ddownton_illustrationsIndustry vet, David Downton, has an expressionistic style that lights me up. I would love to learn to make marks with paint this intentional and accurate. Look at the loose strokes!kellysmithLoving Kelly Smith’s soft and feminine style. Her rendering work with pencil is very impressive.mMorrison I love love love Meagan Morrison’s use of color and movement. The women in her drawing look like they are sacheting right in front of you.regina_yazdi A beautiful demonstration of watercolor technique. Regina Yazdi is a master at it.StinaperssonOne of my all-time favorite artists, Stina Persson, does wonders with cut paper and watercolor! *Sigh. SO good.Meganhess_illustrationMegan Hess has such a poppy, fun style. Look at this incredible scarf! You can purchase them on her site here!hess_ScarfDid you know that fashion designer, Christian Siriano, sells his artwork on his website? Go here to see his fabulous store!cSiriano

Hope you found these as inspiring as I did! What do you think?


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Getting Loose with Paint


I have some techniques to get my creativity flowing, especially on Monday mornings when I am SLLLUGGGISH. I developed a practice of getting loose with paint and art supplies where I experiment with techiques and just let it flow. I find it really helps me get inspired to do some creative work – even the work I don’t feel like doing. Here is what I did this past Monday…suppliesI gathered a bunch of supplies I thought would be fun to work with: watercolor pencils, soft pastel pencils, gouache, liquid acrylic and ink, different brushes, acrylic paint, large sheets of Canson watercolor paper cut down into small pieces. Taking a sheet of paper I began streaking on acrylic paint, dabbing on liquid arylics and letting them run and bleed.

paintapplication paintdrips painting

I love this rich blue color. I continued to dab, drip and even used these water-soluble wax pastels to draw on the painting.painttechniques Another fave of mine are watercolor pencils. They work so well on top of the paint. You can use them as a pencil or add water to get a watery effect.techniquesI started a new painting and used splatting, dabbling and adding in other media and colors.techniques_green


closeup2 I was so in a zone I made a third! finishedpaintingsSo there you have it. But guess what?…there’s more! Just don’t stop here. You can continue to do a few more things with these paint experiments:

  1. continue to work on them, adding more colors, draw over them or paint over to change them up a bit more
  2. scan them in and create repeat patterns to use to make fabric or other print-on-demand products
  3. scan them and use as backgrounds on your website, social media posts, graphic design projects
  4. scan them, clean up in Photoshop and turn into prints to sell

I turned one of the paintings into this month’s new desktop wallpaper! Go to the post below to download for your computer and mobile devices. Enjoy!


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September Desktop Wallpaper

Hello September! I can’t believe how quickly this year is going by! Here is a new desktop wallpaper to start off this new season. Check back TOMORROW for a DIY post on how it was made! Download at the link below and let me know if there’s a format you need that’s not here!

1680 x 1050  / 1280 x 800  / ipad / iphone5 / iphone6


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