Thursday, January 31, 2013


Hearts are a-flutter in my workshop right now. Yesterday, I finished a handful of "SnowBeaus" which is my new term for whimsical snowmen who don handmade, heart-stacked hats! I will be making them available for purchase from my Folk Art Originals page this Saturday. Mailing List recipients will receive an emailed notice tomorrow with the start time and details. I know it's short notice, but I only have a few. As for "Romantic Romeowl" the Valentine owl ~ well, he is complete as well! He posed for multiple photos yesterday, and he'll be making an appearance on my blog tomorrow. Anxious owl-lovers can peek at him on my Flicker page right now. As much as love him, I will be offering him in a week-long Best Offer Blog Auction right here. So check back for the details to come.

Thank you for your LOVE of my art.....
I truly ADMIRE your AFFECTION for one of a kind folk art!

~ Johanna


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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Flirting with Valentine's Designs...

Well, I found my way back to the workshop this past week! My space craved a serious cleaning, so I spent some much needed time clearing counters, organizing and sweeping glass glitter, mica dust, snippets of trims and papier mache remnants from the floor. After I completed the task, I began flirting with the idea to make a collection of characters for Valentine's Day! With the month of February fast approaching, my offerings in this theme will be small but sweet. I started by designing a new heart-themed paper hat, and yes, I made one for Jack, my cat, to wear as well! Yesterday, I completed that set of conical delights, and I know they will be the icing on the characters. And speaking of, I made a handful of heart-warming snowman heads who will don these whimsical fashions. In the mix, I also sculpted a very special standing owl fellow, which I believe I will name "Romantic Romeowl"....(a spin on Romeo)! I hope to have this collection complete by February 1st. Those of you on my mailing list will receive a newsletter announcing these affectionate fellows along with the time when they will be available. So, consider this a little FYI teaser as the sale will happen fairly fast as I hope to ship these guys out so that they arrive close to V-Day! Here's a sneak peek for now ~ Enjoy!

~ Johanna


* Based off of a rough sketch that I scanned, these hats were created in Adobe Illustrator. It was a fun project, and a great way for me to learn the latest version of this fun software. Here, the hats have been printed with fade resistant & waterproof inks, trimmed and shaped.


* After much manipulation of the heavy card stock paper, I crafted these cones into conical forms and glued them in place. It's a tedious process, as the hot glue cools quickly, and I must line up the graphics on the seam! I am always happy and relieved to complete this step!


* To seal the deal, I added my own sealant to each hat for stabilization and a long-lasting result. Illustrated hats are my thing, and I want them to last...


* A blend of two types of chenille stems in hues of red, mixed with pliers and a loving touch, produced a collection of sweet hearts!


* The delicate hearts serve as fashionable tips for these sweet hats. Now, I just need to paint the characters that will don these lovely things...


* And here is a peek at the faces that await their coats of paint, dustings of mica and red glitter trims.


* And here is a closer glimpse of my "owl in the rough" Romantic Romeowl holding his heart, awaiting his delicate hat and painted hues.

If you are not already a member, please Join my Mailing List to be notified when these one of a kind characters will be available.


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Monday, January 14, 2013

Learning Curve + Style Study...

I know, I know ~ it's been about 20 days since I last blogged! Some of you may be wondering what the heck happened to me. I was starting to wonder that too! Haha! Well, first of all, Happy New Year to you! I decided to start 2013 with a brain blast! For Christmas, JP upgraded all of my Adobe graphic software to the latest versions, and I have been riding the learning curve for several weeks now! I feel as if I am back in school, only this time, I just ask Google or YouTube any questions if I get lost along the way! The internet is something else, isn't it?  So far, the month of January has been an exploration into the graphic design side of my business. These new design tools are amazing! So, when I marry those with my creative eye, the magic happens. Honestly, I have been mesmerized with making my own patterns, tiling those images and applying them to character shapes. OH what fun! Hours go by, and I realize that I have to pull myself away from the screen. To break things up a bit, I have been illustrating the old-fashioned way as well. I have a notepad deadline soon, so I am chipping away at the 'ol list while I squeeze in sessions of learning and experimentation. Later this week, I promise to turn the lights back on in the workshop and mix up a batch of papier mache. But for now, I will stay entranced with my new graphic design tools while time permits. And as I learn and play, I am also studying my style, simplifying it for some graphic / print applications and expanding upon it for others. Below, are just a few peeks at some of the conceptual designs I have created during the last few weeks. My fingers are crossed that the inspiration continues to flow and time allows me to expand and express my portfolio. So far, so good!

Best Wishes to you for a happy, prosperous and creative new year!
~ Johanna


* Here's a graphic design version of my signature black cat along with a jack-o'-lantern friend ~ created in Adobe Illustrator CS6...


* And, here I have applied a colorful twist to that same cat character which offers a fresh way of experiencing this fun fellow ~ created in Adobe Illustrator CS6...


* I added an outline to the jack-o'-lantern character above and floated him over a background of swirling patterns I created in Illustrator...


* The perching owl was illustrated with ink, dyes and colored pencils, then scanned. I illustrated the stylized branch in Adobe Photoshop CS6. The final image will be submitted as a notepad design soon...


* And lastly for now, the wildly patterned owl was one of my first more complex projects in Adobe Illustrator CS6. He served as a great step by step way of challenging myself to understand the pattern-making tools. I am still learning, but I think I kinda get it now!


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