Doodle A Day Challenge for 2016

This year I’m taking on the challenge to create a doodle a day and post it online for accountability. At first, it might seem a bit silly because if you create for a living, you probably already create every day (or almost every day). You don’t really need to be challenged, right?

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But I’ve learned that I really like these kinds of challenges and group accountability. It gives me the opportunity to focus on a particular subject and create a body of work slowly, but surely. It’s not as daunting and it sort of guarantees a little bit of creative time, even when life gets busy.

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As you can see, I have chosen to doodle a little girl each day which is a comfortable space for me. I want to set myself up for success, after all! However, I added the difficulty of handlettering which I’m needing to practice. There is room to add more elements when the day permits. So far so good… although I feel like I need to get better or do more each day already. Sort of a weird type of personal, but entirely unnecessary pressure. I just need to relax!

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I’m posting on Instagram and the link goes to my Twitter and Facebook as well, so please follow along and let me know what you think. Is there something specific you want me to incorporate in a doodle? I’m open to any and all ideas, because I’ve got over 350 days to go :)

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Happy Print Club – Floral Fantasy Printables

Happy 2016! I’ve posted the first release of the year to Happy Print Club – my online printable stationery club. The new design is called Floral Fantasy with a combo of deep, rich colors accented by light and happy pastels.

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The repeating pattern came out of my experimentations in reading Jeanetta Gonzales‘ post about #patternplay on The Jungalow. I have some knowledge of technical repeats, but I really enjoyed the history and visual inspiration she shared regarding designer William Morris. It’s fun to learn about different pattern styles and not just learn the technical logistics of creating a surface pattern design.

My end result is not really in the style of that time period, not to mention I ran into a lot of issues with my computer crashing from all the little dots I was creating. I had to use Photoshop in the end which was a challenge for me, since I only use that program to edit photos. I’m much more comfortable designing in Illustrator! It was a good experience though and I’m really happy with the end result.

This year I’m adding more to Happy Print Club releases, so you might have noticed there is a greeting card design, coordinating journaling cards and the design as a full 12×12 patterned paper. It’s like a mini paper crafting kit to play with and I’m excited to see what you will create.

Look forward to weekly releases every Friday – yippee! Now head on over to Happy Print Club to check out the details on Floral Fantasy!

Good Bye 2015, Hello 2016

The days are long, but the years are short.
– Gretchen Rubin

There are many days throughout the year that seem to drag on endlessly, especially since I work from home and suffer from lack of connection with fellow peers. But then the year seems to pass by in a flash… way too quickly. How can it be nearly 2016 already? The quote above rings ever so true.

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When I’m feeling overwhelmed and restless, it’s usually because I’m swept away by the current of daily life and unable to stop and do what I really want to do. It’s like being a robot of life and not being satisfied in the end. Just going through the motions to survive. These past years of transitioning from single to married to mom of two little ones now – has really, truly, transformed my life entirely. Duh! Often I find myself thinking and planning but only in my head, not actually being able to have free hands to act upon all those notions.

It can be so damn frustrating.

This time last year I was going through these same kind of feelings and although I know life can never return to the way it was before, I’m still in the progress of finding my way and looking for balance. We must all navigate our own way!

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I started looking back on this blog, searching for something to hold onto and I have repeatedly tried to keep my spirits up and take steps forward even if they are baby steps. I have accomplished many things, even if I feel like it’s not enough… it is something afterall. And that’s better than nothing, right?

I have many responsibilities, so some tasks might take a bit longer than I would like… but possibility is definitely there. Hope is there. However, it all requires work. So my guiding word for 2016 will be “WORK.” Get to work, do the work, work it out and it will work. Yay! Wishing you an amazing, productive and happy new year! Do you have a one little word, guiding your way?

Need Coffee Printable

Even when I’m super busy, trying to juggle mom life, work life and creative life all together… I try to find a few minutes to play in my art journal. It’s helpful for my sanity and mood to do something fun and creative!

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This is a page in my journal for the ecourse  The Creative Life: Documented with Amy Tan and Jamie Waters. I was inspired to create the graphic about coffee because I realize how much I love it and practically need it to start my day off. It’s just become a routine and ritual, more than the actual physical need – if that makes sense? It’s a quick and easy page to get my creative fix for the day. That is something that I learned from the class – that it really doesn’t take that much time to satisfy my creative needs. It’s not about the best or perfect layout or design – not the point at all!

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BTW, I would love to share the printable with you – if you would like just click below to download the graphic and use for your personal creative projects. Have fun and let me know what you create! I would love to see your creations linked up in the comments! Enjoy!

Make Pretty Gifts From Your Printables

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These days there are so many pretty printables available online and regular printers have advanced tenfold allowing us to create beautiful prints from the comfort of our homes. One of the easiest ways to use printables is to create stationery sets to give as gifts. Especially for the holiday season, these little packets would make great stocking stuffers as well!

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With whatever printable you have available, print at the highest quality you can with your printer on the best paper quality you have. It makes a huge difference in the vibrance of the color of prints. Pretty much any printable can easily be trimmed to be a greeting card or notecard. Put a bunch of prints together, multiple copies or a variety and package it up as a stationery set.

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You can create custom envelopes or just add in store bought ones to complete the gift kit. Even add a pretty pen and/or stamps and you’ve got a full blown correspondence kit all ready to go!

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Here I’m showing a few examples using the printables from Happy Print Club and  the cards can be tied together with a bit of colorful twine, put into a cute cloth gift bag or wrapped up in an envelope. All methods make a pretty gift! If you have the tools, you can even add custom envelopes and round the corners of the cards to give them a nice finished look.

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So what printables do you have to craft up in a stationery DIY? Paper goods make great gifts for everyone because we can all use some pretty paper to handwrite our sentiments and correspondence. If you are interested in created sets of stationery to give as gifts, check out the huge library of printables from Happy Print Club.

If you would like some free pretty paper printables, sign up for my newsletter and get started with my free downloads right away!