Sunday, August 13, 2017

Catching Up: Feeling Uninspired? Try this Challenge!

It has certainly been a while since I have taken to my blog pages! For that, I'm sorry! I miss posting patterns, sharing all of the creative projects and jobs I take on, as well as trying to inspire all of you to be creative!

With this being said, I was still working during all of this time away and I hope to get back into the swing of things here and share weekly. 

If you are interested in seeing what I'm up to on the daily, feel free to find me on a variety of social media sites-you can browse over on the right side of this page ➜

I must admit, I am the most active on Instagram as far as getting bak to everyone's comments, but no matter what you prefer, I'd love to see you there 😊

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So I pretty much dropped off the face of the blogger planet around June, mostly because of my little kitty, Burmew. She was diagnosed with cancer and after our 17 years together, and I decided to do everything I could in the time I have left with her to make her comfortable.

She is on a treatment right now that keeps her happy, but she still requires a lot of care everyday. We are just taking things one day at a time for now.😼

In the midst of this, I initially found it hard to get inspired again. Not only for the sake of getting work done for the few clients I had this summer, but in general too!

So I found this really fun month long challenge on Instagram by Adventures and Tea Parties, which is a creative blog and accessory brand.

Here is a link to the blog, if you're interested:

http://adventuresandteaparties.blogspot.com/

Did you come back? Hooray!


Anyway! The challenge was called 'Colour My Everyday' (The blog is based out of Somerset, UK...so hence the 'colour' spellingπŸ˜… ). For each day of June, there was a prompt meant to inspire the appreciation of color in our everyday.

This challenge was so much fun and had me looking at everyday objects and their colorful appearances in completely new ways!

Oh, and of course, my little critters enjoyed making their signature cameos in most of the images I captured. However, this was also a really lovely challenge for inspiring some doodles too.


For You πŸ’“ : 

The great thing about this challenge is that I think you could decide to start it at any time when you are feeling uninspired. As creative beings, we all go through spells when it feels like nothing we create is good enough or we just have trouble finding the motivation to sit down and create!

If you find yourself in this position, don't despair. Take a day to relax and then pick a few prompts from this list and see what you can come up with. You may tackle a prompt with your chosen medium or another way of working that you have always wanted to try. 

Either way, I say go for it! Sometimes things like this are just the ticket to getting you out of your comfort zone and get the creative juices flowing once again!


So here we go!

Day 1: Favourite Colour

with Day 2: From the wardrobe

    and Day 3: On my desk

       oh shucks! And Day 4: Look Up

Did I mention I got started a few days late? 😁  It's ok, the image right down here has all four!

1. I love Autumn colors contrasted with cooler tones πŸ’™ 🍁

2. My nails are a must with my wardrobe! They are always painted, pink in this pic πŸ’•πŸ’… but I like all the colors!

3. This little guy is named Foxel and he is always on one of my work tables. I'm currently trying to draft up a children's book about Foxel and his friend, Bunny-Rose. So he mutters little words of encouragement as I work. 🐾

4. This is the view of my 'backyard' here in the city. So Foxel has on his cape and is a superhero flying around up in the sky.


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Day 5: Plastic

I'm not so sure why, but my mom filled my Christmas stocking with all of these little plastic pink flamingos! So now these little guys are everywhere, hiding in random places around my house. 

They did inspire this little doodle thoughπŸ˜€


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Day 3: Handmade

This one was an easy one for me since I love to crochet my little handmade critters! Here was have the mini broccoli just hanging out with some of his pals. 

My fiancΓ© didn't really approve my use of the ingredients for our dinner that night, but oh well! All in the name of creativity! ✊

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Day 7: From the kitchen

I'm definitely a big fan of pyrex, I think many of us antiquers are! Though these tea cups are not actually pyrex (they're porcelain), they are still my favorite because the colors still remind me of pyrex.

My little crochet plushies also love them 😏

This picture reminds me of the Alice in Wonderland tea cup ride at Disneyland.

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Day 8:  Jewelry

Even though I am usually tucked away in my studio by myself all day, I still like to wear my jewels and dresses. There is just something about me more productive when I am feeling 'put together.'

I really love these two rose bracelets I have in my collection and their shape inspired a doodle with my Prisma pencils that I had been wanting to use again after a long time.

Tip: Like I said above, sometimes using a medium you don't always use can help you get out of a creative funk.

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 9: Building

This house is an actual building in my neighborhood! I drive by it all the time and it is one of my most favorite buildings here in SF. 

My pig decided to dress up as Mondrian, and have his picture taken in front of this amazing home inspired by Mondrian's paintings.

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi

Day 10: Group

With this little motley crew of critters, I knew where my group was without a second thought!

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi

Day 11: Tool

   Oops! πŸ˜…  Day 12 too: Look down 

For me, the need to be creative almost everyday in some way or another is what makes me feel validated. So really, just about any creative tool can help me accomplish this. 

In this case, I was feeling really tired that day, but wanted to try and pull myself out of my sloth-i-ness. So I grabbed some sidewalk chalk and went out in the sun to just play around. It did wonders, plus I got to take some really fun shadow pictures!

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 13: Tin

It's no secret that I adore miniature things and the critters do too.

I have this little tin 'Bread & Cake' box and the critters always get excited about the delicious items inside πŸ˜‹

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Day 14: Glass

I found Mr. Orange at the bottom of one of my cups, which was perfect for this prompt.

The glass is a Turkish style teacup that I actually bought when I was visiting Turkey. I loved the apple tea they served us in cups just like this one everywhere we went.

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 15: Fabric

   Day 16: Boomerang

Shucks! Time got away from me again with this one, so I combined the two prompts and I think it worked out pretty well.

Whenever a customer orders a plushie from me on Etsy, their animal comes in a handmade cloth drawstring bag. 

Here is a link to see the boomerang of my sloth plushie in his bag:



Day: 17: Man made

Whenever I think of this term, I always think of cities. So it is only fitting that Mr. Orange is looking out over the area of SF that has been my home for the last 12 years. A lovely 'man made' (woman-made too? πŸ™‹ ) city🏩 

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 18: Paper

I wasn't feeling too inspired this day, but the critters pulled out all of these long colorful strips of paper and we decided to make a bunch of little origami stars for this prompt.

Tip: Here is a link to a pinterest page for making this type of origami stars. They are pretty fun and addicting once you get the hang of it!


Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 19: Place

My favorite place in the whole world is Sunriver, Oregon (ok maybe not my only favorite, but in the top five!)

It's so quiet and scenic there, it's the perfect place to get inspired! I ended up cancelling my plans this summer to stay home with kitty, so looking back on this photo made me happy.

This image is from a while back now, but it is special to me because I went there to work on the first children's book I illustrated professionally.

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Day 20: From the cupboard

I don't really have a cupboard in my studio, but I have tons of drawers and bins stuffed with art and craft supplies. *Sshhh** I may be a hoarder in the making 😁

Summers in SF are notoriously cold and dreary. So when I found these pencils in one of my drawers (when rummaging around for something else, hehe) I felt that they were perfect for brightening up the day.

Mr. Orange and Mrs. Pineapple agree 🍊🍍 

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 21: Natural

When it was time for this prompt, of course I wanted to take pictures of flowers! However, Mr. Orange had to steal the show!

I guess I'd take a Mr. Orange flower any day 😍

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Day 22: Pottery

Again, I could not resist pulling out some of my miniatures for this one. I have the prettiest hand painted mini pottery that can be seen here.

My favorite is the jug for water because of the colorful melted look of the glazes.

This picture is also very appropriate as I am playing nurse to my sweet little girl 🐱

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Day 23: Pattern

I did a little throw-back for this one. These foxes are from a little while ago now, but I enjoyed rediscovering it since it made me think about potential patterns I could design with some of the other characters I have drawn since then.

Tip: If you are feeling stuck, sometimes going through past projects can perk up your muses. You can even try re-doing a past project after you have 'put it on the shelf' and see how you approach it now that it has been a while.

Ria Art World Alexandria Gold Crochet Illustration Children's Books Illustration Kidlit Art Handmade Etsy Amigurumi


Day 24: Food

Come on...I couldn't resist! Of course I couldn't share real food! Had to be crochet food. Yes, definitely.

These strawberries are sentimental to me since they are among the first things I ever successfully crocheted almost seven years ago! πŸ™Š

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Day 25: Flower

Again, how could I resist! Did you really think I would try and take a picture of a real flower? πŸ˜†

I just had to make a bunch of colorful mini flowers so my critters could take a stroll through a garden. 

I must say, the repetitive action behind the making of all of these flowers was actually quite relaxing, especially when you pair it with a night of Netflix (and possibly a piece of cake...well, most definitely a piece of cake🍰 )

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Day 26: Door

Now there are many interesting and colorful doors here in SF, but when you walk by one of the doors in your home and see this little guy poking his head out, you gotta stop and take a picture!

Party owl was definitely up to something behind those doors and I'm pretty sure it had to do with my birthday.

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Day 27: My view

I have to admit, since I live in the typical SF style home where we are all smashed up side by side, I don't have the best, most scenic view from the windows on both sides of my building.

On one side I have a busy street and on the other side I look into my neighbor's windows across our narrow alleyway πŸ™ˆ

However, my window sills are never less than charming! The critters love to do all kinds of things up there and here they are just enjoying a cup of afternoon tea.

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Day 28: Bag

I bought this handmade bag because the fox on it reminded me of Foxel. So Foxel has his bag and inside there seemed to have been some little fruit and veggie stowaways from his travels!

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Day 29: Contrast

I loved this one! 

Ok, I'll admit, at first, I hated this one. It seemed so broad and I had no idea what I would do. I was browsing online one day and randomly came across some of Andy Warhol's art, and low and behold, his work inspired this!

Each crocheted birdie is paired with their complimentary color to create this super mod critter masterpiece!

Tip: You could try looking at 'the masters' of your chosen craft for inspiration if you are feeling stuck!

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Day 30: Object

The last day of the Colour My Everyday challenge!! I thought, what could be a better 'object' than toys? 

In the end, I may have had a little too much fun with this scene and the whole challenge in general 😏

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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

New Plushies!

So I started with a few animal designs for little crochet plushies. The most popular right away was the corgis (no surprise there).

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Their success got me thinking of a whole slew of other animals I could try making in this chibi style. So we have a sloth, elephant and owls!

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustration Ria Art World Crochet Handmade Amigurumi Kawaii Etsy


Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustration Ria Art World Crochet Handmade Amigurumi Kawaii Etsy

I must admit, I'm pretty smitten with this minty green/aqua color!

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustration Ria Art World Crochet Handmade Amigurumi Kawaii Etsy

Now, I'm working on a hedgehog pattern inspired by this doodle:

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustration Ria Art World Crochet Handmade Amigurumi Kawaii Etsy

So we'll see how things progress! I'm thinking of doing a pug dog next, but I'm open to suggestions!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Critter Jokes

I've been playing around with some jokes among my critters as I try and slowly accumulate fun ideas to include in the pattern book I'm working on.

So here are a few that I like especially for my fruit and veggie critters:

Oh and if any of you out there have any jokes you would like to see the critters perform, let me know! 😊

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustrations Ria Art World Crochet Critters Amigurumi Handmade Kawaii



Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustrations Ria Art World Crochet Critters Amigurumi Handmade Kawaii



Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustrations Ria Art World Crochet Critters Amigurumi Handmade Kawaii


Monday, May 22, 2017

Maker Faire

Over the weekend, I participated in the San Mateo Maker's Faire!

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold children's books illustration Ria Art World Crochet critters amigurumi handmade


Now, when ya think Maker Faire, I'm sure you naturally think of science, engineering or general inventiony-type stuff; however, there were many tents that had many lovely artsy and crafty things! Including the tent I was in, SF Bazaar, where there were tons of handcrafted goods!

Outside of the drone racing and robot inventing, there were some interesting crafty things! There were many 3D printing stations that were printing all kinds of shapes for people to decorate. My favorite was the booth that was making origami pieces with masking tape! There were all kinds of shape like animals and flowers to make.

So I think my critters fit in for the most part.

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold children's books illustration Ria Art World Crochet critters amigurumi handmade

There were 10 different zones, meaning 10 different large building and tents for people to weave in and out of all day. As a vendor it was overwhelming to find my spot and get set up, but I can't imagine how it must have been for the public trying to make it to each attraction!

SF Bazaar was more towards the outskirts of the Faire, so I don't think we got as much attention as the tents along the main path got. However, it was sill a lucrative show! A little slow, but steady and consistent.

All in all, it was not a bad place to be at all weekend, there was never a dull moment or lack of something to do!

The critters had a blast and give a very special thank you to all those that came out to support not only Ria Art but all of the other lovely vendors at SF Bazaar.

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold children's books illustration Ria Art World Crochet critters amigurumi handmade

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Critter Activities

When my little critters are not getting ready to be shipped off for Etsy or getting ready for a craft show, they are up to all kinds of things.

Like this penguin, who decided the arctic was not enough for him.

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So he grabbed his little piggy friend and high-tailed it to France for a little vacay!

Alexandria Gold Children's Books Alexandria Gold Illustrations Alexandria Gold Children's Books Illustration Ria Art World Crochet Amigurumi Crafting Handmade Critters

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day

Here is a little Mother's Day pun for ya!



So all you Raisins out there, don't forget to call your grapes today!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

A Little Treat

It's Saturday! The morning typically consists of me dragging my poor tired booty to the gym *sigh** and then some errand running. I know, epic Saturday morning-just kidding!

However today, was pretty nice because I went to Daiso! (Hey, you gotta appreciate the little pleasures in life!)

For those of you who don't know what Daiso is, it is the equivalent to a Dollar Store, only everything is from Japan! So all the items in the store are way more kawaii πŸ’ž

I like to save my change-as Sweet Peg is demonstrating here:

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Hmm, not so sure he approves of my savings method here...😏

Anyway! Since everything is so cheap, I can treat myself with some fun things from Daiso and my collected change!

So I got myself some washi tape! I know, I know, the last thing I probably need, but I can't help myself! I adore the cute patterns on washi tape and have all kinds of fun using them for scrapbooking, letter writing or making my Etsy packages look cuter.

Mr. Oragne and Arty Heart agree that this was a Saturday morning well spent πŸ˜„

Alexandria Gold Illustration Alexandria Gold Children;s Books Illustration Ria Art World Crafting Crochet Critters Amigurumi Kawaii Handmade Miniatures