45 degrees off

Seeing the same thing from a different angle.

Monthly Archives: January 2012

A Little Love

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Many people don’t like the holiday. It’s not much fun to see everyone else gushing on and on about how in love they are when you’re not in a relationship, even if you’re generally happy that way the rest of the year. Love isn’t just about romantic love, though, and Valentine’s Day cards and gifts are often given to a variety of people in our lives who are so near and dear to us that we consider them “someone I love”.

My Patchwork Heart is available mostly on small gifts. Things like stickers, keychains, magnets, and mugs.  These aren’t particularly romantic gifts, and are appropriate for giving to everyone from your mother to a teacher.

This is a design won in Zazzle necklace design contest last year, and it is available as a necklace, but between you and me I’ve always liked it more as a shirt and a mug.

The Many Languages of Love design is available on a variety of products, including tote bags, aprons, and keepsake gift boxes.

This postcard has been one of my more popular products for the past few years. I made the piece available on a few other products, but only when it would fit well. You can get it as a necklace, postage stamp, magnet, or mousepad, as well still being available as a postcard. It can be a romantic gift, but also makes an appropriate gift for a mother or grandmother.

And if you do want to tell a special someone just how much they mean to you, but you’re not really a “flowers and teddy bears” couple…

The mug has “You fill my life meter” written on it. I suggest the “morphing mug” option (which is what I’ve set the default to, but you can certainly change it before ordering if you’d rather not have it)  so that the design appears and your life meter fills as the mug is filled with a hot drink.


Don’t give in to the idea that Valentine’s Day is either a holiday full of chocolate and roses, or a day you avoid all human contact. Spread a little love in your own way!


Lessons from the Sketchbook

I am slowly filling pages in my sketchbook. I never really know what a page will look like before it is finished. That’s part of what I enjoy about doing it. I lose myself in drawing each line, not worrying about the one before it or the next to come. It’s so relaxing that it can be like taking a nap without falling asleep.

Some pages turn out better than others. I’ve given myself permission to experiment within the pages of the book with things that I have no clue if it’ll work out well or not.  There is a page I did with purple, red, green, and blue ink. The rainbow effect wasn’t quite what I had hoped for, and I’m not very happy with it. I didn’t tear the page out, though. It is part of my ink and paper experiment and belongs in the book.

I think this one turned out better. I decided to try again with splashes of color added to a finished drawing.

Sketchbook piece with splashes of color.

I do wish I had a yellow pen. I would have traded brown for yellow.

I’m learning that I can be a lot more patient than I ever thought I could be. Several people have commented on the level of detail in a recently completed drawing that spans two pages of the book. It wasn’t particularly difficult to draw, but it was a big time investment.

Sketchbook piece spanning two pages.

There are at least two errors in that one, and quite a few lines I wish I’d drawn smoother or angled better. Learning to make mistakes is part of the process, though. Eliminating errors to improve the quality of one’s work is important. If the fear of mistakes stops a person from trying anything new, however, learning to make mistakes has to come before learning to eliminate them. You don’t get better at something by not doing it.

I have a few black and white projects to work on this year outside of the sketchbook. I am looking forward to each and every one of them. As much as I love color, I think a lot of my growth – as an artist and a person – is happening in black and white right now.