The Old & New Project



I was really honored when Troy DeShano and Jim LePage asked me to be part of their Old & New Project this year. If you haven’t heard of Old & New Project, it is a platform for contemporary graphic artists to exhibit works themed on Biblical stories and passages. It aims to replace traditionally popular Biblical artwork with newer, more contemporary accessible work. In the words of its founders, “Old & New is not an attempt to convert folks or create religious propaganda. In order to take a new look at this old book, we want, in fact we need, artists from all types of faith perspectives.” The project includes artists from different religious backgrounds, including those who have had negative experiences with the church, along with agnostics and atheists.

My piece for the current iteration of the project is pictured above. My assignment was to illustrate the following verse from Song of Solomon:

Love is as Strong as Death:

Place me like a seal over your heart,
like a seal on your arm;

for love is as strong as death,
its jealousy unyielding as the grave.

It burns like blazing fire,
like a mighty flame.

Many waters cannot quench love;
rivers cannot sweep it away.

If one were to give
all the wealth of one’s house for love,
it would be utterly scorned.

Have a great weekend, friends!


Pattern of the Week!



This week’s repeat pattern is made from drawings of one of my favorite things to draw: succulents! If you take my basic line drawing class (which is available if you subscribe to Creativebug), one of the lessons is all about drawing succulents. (BTW: there is no start or end time to this drawing class so you can take it at any time!)

I plan to make a few more patterns from succulent drawings over the coming weeks, so stay tuned for more.

Have a happy Friday and a great weekend.


San Francisco Scarf for The Bold Italic



You may remember when I made this new San Francisco print especially for The Bold Italic. Well, they’ve gone and made a gorgeous scarf with the line drawing based on the print, and it’s now for sale in their shop.


It contains many of my favorite iconic San Francisco images, from cable cars to sea lions to pigeons!



Go get yours here.


Words for the Day :: No. 18




Just one of the illustrated quotes you’ll find in this book, which comes out very soon!

Happy Thursday (almost Friday), friends!


New Repeat Pattern :: Hot Air Balloons!



You might recall a couple of weeks ago I shared with you this pattern I made recently. I’m in the process of building up my repeat pattern portfolio, and here’s another I made last week (shown in two colorways).

Also, don’t forget that my four-week basic line drawing class starts today! And it’s not too late to sign up. Just register with Creativebug and you’ll have access to my class and hundreds more (for only $9.95 a month). Everything is online and you can participate at your own pace.

Enjoy and happy Tuesday!


New Repeat Pattern!



This may I will travel to Surtex for the fourth time — a surface design show in New York — to show my portfolio at my agent’s booth. To prepare my portfolio with some new imagery I’ve given myself the goal of making at least one new repeat pattern a week between now and the beginning of May.

Here’s the first! It combines my love for typography, geometric shapes and mid-century pottery, and it’s available for license!



Have a great Wednesday, friends!



Sketchbook :: Playing with Image Transfers




You might remember recently I wrote about my friend Courtney Cerruti’s book, Playing with Image Transfers. This past week I’ve been doing just that. In Monday’s sketchbook entry (above) I transfered some images from a vintage book about Germany using packing tape and water (for more information on this technique, I highly recommend Courtney’s book). The rest of the spread is painted & drawn with my own hand. Words by the late German poet Johannes Bobrowski.

Have a great weekend, friends!


Wildsam :: San Francisco



Every now and again an illustration job comes to your desk that makes you jump out of bed in the morning wanting to get to work. One such job came my way last year via Taylor Bruce, founder, editor and writer of the Wildsam Field Guides. Taylor was making a SF Guide and he wanted me to illustrate it. I could not have been more excited.

Wildsam Field Guides are not like regular travel guides. They are small books (they could easily fit in a large pocket) filled with local lore, interviews with local characters, hand-drawn maps, personal essays, lists of local “must knows” and more. “Equal parts travel guide and tribute, the field guides suit both weekender and native,” says Taylor.

In all, the book includes about 15 of my illustrations. I had never drawn a map before taking the Wildsam SF assignment (gasp!), but had so much fun drawing the six maps in the book. The maps are clearly not to scale, but designed more to highlight different aspects of the city’s culture, landscape and history. Here are two I drew for the book that I love:



Part of what made working on Wildsam SF so great was working one-on-one with Taylor Bruce. In addition to making Wildsam Guides, Taylor is a writer. He’s written for magazines like Men’s Journal, Budget Travel, Southern Living, Oxford American, Paste, Travel + Leisure, National Geographic Adventure, and others — so he’s obviously pretty smart. Taylor is also incredibly gracious and kind. And he was great to work with because he took every illustration so seriously, but at the same time he let me guide the look and feel of each drawing with my own flair. For example, he allowed me to infuse my own quirks into each map based on my own memories and knowledge of the city.


Wildsam Guides are perfect little books and you can get them here. The San Francisco Guide is also sold in many stores around the city. If you are planning a trip to San Francisco, I highly recommend bringing one along.


Rumor has it both Detroit and Brooklyn are on the short list for upcoming Wildsam Guides. Stay tuned for more!

Happy, happy Thursday.


Words for the Day :: No. 13




Last night’s sketchbook entry.

Have a great Thursday, friends!


Wherever You Are, Make Art




As some of you may know, I’m taking the month off to step back, reflect and relax a little before I embark on a new year of work. Some questions I’m thinking about: Where do I want to take my work next? What ideas do I have for new creative endeavors? How will I create a more sustainable and positive sense of work/life balance?

I’m at the beach by myself for the next several days. I didn’t come here with an agenda about what I am going to create, but I did bring a lot of art supplies with me in the event that I’m inspired. Over the weekend I found myself collecting smooth rocks from the beach at low tide. When I got back to the beach house, I pulled out some white paint and started painting designs on them. I know I’m not the first to paint on beach rocks (my friend Diana is quite exceptional at it), but it was the first time I’d ever done it myself. And let me tell you, it’s an addictive (and rather inexpensive) hobby!



I wonder what else I will make while I am here and how it will be influenced by my temporary surroundings? Hopefully I’ll have more to share while I’m here. In the meantime, you can follow me on Instagram.

I hope you will come back to visit tomorrow. I will have a very special post on some incredible new work by Molly Hatch that I am very excited to share with you.

Happy Monday.


Tip o’ the Day


surround yourself_lowres

This is what it’s all about.

Happy Friday, friends.


A Year of Reconstructionists



Since early January 2013, my friend Maria Popova and I have collaborated on a project called The Recontructionists. Each Monday we have posted a drawing and an essay about a woman we admire, — a woman who has changed the face of history. Yesterday, the final Reconstructionist of the year, Simone de Beauvoir, went up on our blog. Working on this project with Maria has been a fantastic experience. I have learned so much, and I hope our readers have too.

Below a compilation of all the 55 portraits from the project. You can read all of the accompanying essays here.




Merry Christmas!






San Francisco in 23 Places



Super excited to have this new print through The Bold Italic in San Francisco. It’s entitled San Francisco in 23 Places, it’s signed and dated, and you can get it here for just $20. (Hint: a great gift for anyone who loves this city!).

Have a great Tuesday, friends.

CATEGORIES Drawings | For Sale

On Not Feeling Alone



{Latest sketchbook entry}

Yesterday I had an AWFUL day. It seemed that everything was going wrong — several small things, and one really big thing. Circumstances had left me feeling sad and confused. It was a day when I felt like crawling in a dark hole and not coming out until everything had miraculously resolved itself. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you see it), I couldn’t crawl into a hole. I had paintings to make, illustration work to finish and a book to write. I generally don’t have time to fret. Over the course of the day, several friends (plus my sister) came to my rescue, offering their support for my situation. Others confided in me that they were having crappy days too. On Facebook I learned that more than three of my friends had spent the day in tears. One of my friends declared, “Mercury is in Uranus!” We consoled each other, gave each other virtual hugs, and took strength in the fact that we were all suffering.

By the end of the day, almost nothing about my situation had changed. The things that had upset me at 9 am were still true. But what had changed was how I felt about it. I no longer felt desperate or crazy. I felt supported. I had a sense of humor. I remembered that we all have bad days — and it’s the bad days that soften us and help us to be there for each other.

Thank you to everyone who helped me get through my day yesterday. You are all my sunshine.

Happy weekend.