Just wanted to wish our far away family and friends a merry Christmas and happy new year! We miss and love you to pieces and hope to see you soon! We're also looking forward to the future adventures coming up in 2014 with old pals and new pals too! This year has been very kind to us so thank you 2013, we will never forget you! 


Big Freddy, The Tree Growing Yeti

This is a work in progress. Freddy grows trees on his head. By ©olin

Tree House Sketch

I'm currently in the process of creating a whole world called Yumsville, which is inspired by my mom, Sandy. Here's a sketch that features a modern treehouse, an elevator pod, and a view of what goes on underground. By ©olin


Tree Pattern

The show, Treehouse Masters, has inspired me to push the idea of what treehouses look like...
I love incorporating "modern style" houses into my treehouse illustrations. I look forward to 
building a modern treehouse someday for our little dood, Finley...©olin


Exciting stuff!

There are so many exciting creative things happening in the future that I have to keep on the down low. It's so hard! I wanna explode!!!!! Right now you'll have to settle for this awkwardly happy girl who felt like saying hi. She looks like she might have a boyish scratchy but likable voice like Demi Moore or something. Although too bad Demi isn't that likable anymore. Didn't she get all wack with Ashton during the divorce after he was a good dad to another daddy babies kids? I'll have to consult with my hen house cashier buddy, Patty on that to get the full scoop. Anywho, have a good one.  Cause this day will never happen again :)


That baby head smell.....

We've been busy!!!!!! The past 2 months are hard to describe with actual words. But here are a few anyway. I'm so proud, happy, tired, inspired, thankful...in awe.. The list goes on. We had our sweet Finley Oliver on Friday, September 13. What a lucky day indeed contrary to some superstitious folk. We've been in a little  baby bubble and now it's time to peek our head out and see what the rest of the world is up to! As far as creative endeavors we temporarily closed our shop but we will open it back up soon and also have LOTS of new projects to share in the upcoming months :)


Wowsers.....I fell off the face of the earth.

And landed in this collage. This was the second to last MATS assignments I did. And that was a few months ago. Growing a baybay takes a lot of energy. So I had to reserve mine. But he is almost here and I really miss blogging. So I'll get back on the horse here and post my last assignment in a few days.
Maybe...unless I go into labor. :) I can't say enough about Lilla's class. I'm looking forward to Part B and hope I have a little time to dibble and dabble in the assignments but I"m not going to push it. I know taking care of a new human is intense so I'm dialing down my expectations. I really like getting to know the other students too and now we have a little online art possie if you will. So even if I can't kick total as* in the class I can hook up with my buds on the MATS FB page and show off pics of the little one :) In regards to this assignment I did very little in photoshop here. It was mostly conventional gouache, glue, pencil and paper.....and I'm proud of that. It was sooooooo therapeutic. Cutting paper and gluing stuff down is just the best.....
I highly recommend it! As far as the quote, I feel it really speaks to where I'm at mentally right now. I hope it speaks to you too!


Luchas and night lights oh my!!!!! Petit Reve and Common Rebels!

Peep these gorgeous Lucha coasters illustrated by my husband Colin Walsh and produced by CommonRebels available on Fab.com. Bright, bold and full of punch ;) Behind the scenes they also have awesome names and interesting back stories as well. Hot Dog Frank and Falcon Trout to name a few.....I dont' know where he comes up with this stuff :) But I love it. Petit Reve also has a slew of night lights available with CommonRebels that are sure to keep your little one feeling safe and boogyman free when the sun goes down :) We heart CR. They are a great company on the up and up.


Make Art That Sells-Assignment #3 Children's Picture Books

So this week was kiddo time. And I loved it. ONCE....I got over the moody snail. Lilla had us focus on the Hans Christian Andersen tale of "The Snail and the Rose". Maybe it's because I'm 6.5 months pregnant, maybe it's because the snail is a party pooper..but the story was a little depressing and I wasn't in the mood to draw a bratty snail. Maybe because I'm feeling bratty :) and don't want to admit it! Raging hormones and sugar cravings like you wouldn't believe! Anyway, Lilla said we could interpret the story anyway we liked and I was very thankful. Hopefully if we couldn't have changed it I would've gone into professional mode and done my best bratty snail ever. That said, down below is my take. And also some sketches and doodles that got me there. I liked the idea of the snail having a unique shell and a purpose. Han's snail is sad and has no purpose. He also tries to make the Rose tree feel bad about blooming gorgeous flowers year after year- jealous....:) So I thought, Why not have his purpose be to HELP the tree bloom to a lovely melody he wrote?! What I thought was extra cool about this assignment? Lilla chose a snail because it's a simple character that everyone can draw no matter what their skill level. Also, the story is laid out for us and ready to be told-with our help. Just like a real book assignment. She certainly knows what she's doing, that one. :)


Make Art that Sells-Assignment #2 Home Decor

This week it was Home Decor. The focus of the assignment zeroed in on dish ware. LOVE!!!
Lilla gave us a mini-assignmnet of doodling seed pods and unusual flowers. I had done some rough sketches of some groovy flowers awhile back and decided to revisit them. This gave me a chance to really expand on the little spark I thought might be there. I added to the array of shapes and sizes, texture....etc. I got into a zone and it was sooooo therapeutic. . It just goes to show that we should never throw ANYTHING we draw away. Well, maybe some things. I've been known to tear out a sheet of paper from my sketchbook if it brings me any sort of grief. That said, if you did something you like but don't have time to explore it at that moment, hold onto it...

We could only submit one plate but we had to do 4 designs. Lilla and her crew are so good at pushing you in the right direction. Now I have a complete collection for a future product line :) I also tried some different color combos and got lost in the color matrix for a bit and the folks on the MATS1 FB page  along with my keen eyed hubs, really helped push the color out to the level it should be. This process does not take place in a bubble and we need supportive talent around us sometimes!!!
I also included the color experiments. The one directly below is what I submitted to the class.


Sketchy lett-rin'

A sketch for a card I did for Treat and Hallmark's online card shop. I FREAKING LOVE to hand letter!
Here's the finished product on Hallmark.com


Make Art that Sells-Assignment #1 Bolt Fabric

Hi! So it's the second week of Lilla's Make Art That Sells class. We have a new assignment this week and I'm so stoked to go home and doodle my little heart out. But I wanted to share my finished piece with you for the first assignment last week. It was Bolt Fabric. YAY! I LOVE fabric. I HOARD fabric. Anyway, Lilla gave us a mini assignment to warm up on Monday.We were to doodle vintage pyrex dishes and mushrooms. Count me in..so fun. So natural. Then wednesday the official assignment was to do a bolt fabric pattern in the tone of vintage kitchen using some of our sketches and whatever else we wanted to add. very open. very fun. Here are my b & w sketches and then the finished piece down below. People, if you are at all intrigued by this class but you feel intimidated so you didn't sign up then you ARE the perfect candidate. The info Lilla shares is "invaluable" as a classmate of mine put it. Thanks Meems.  She is a great great teacher.  Her support is amazing. Lilla is nurturing but firm. That lovely balance is so rare. She might be the Mary Poppins of the art world. Coming from me that's a compliment. I love me some MP. ALSO, the new friends you meet....the support, the community...it's good stuff and it feeds your creative soul. There is another round in October. You should check it out!!!! This class is the real deal folks.


Holy Moly, dreams DO come true! Hello Lilla Rogers!

So when I was first starting out at Hallmark as a designer/illustrator I was on the kids team. They encouraged us to research and hone our creative skills. Naturally I would take advantage of the awesome library that Hallmark has and peruse the internet. Well, low and behold I stumbled upon this really cool website called Lilla Rogers Studio. And it was a feast for my eyeballs for sure. Never had I seen such talent all under one roof. LRS became a "hallmark" if you will, of inspsiration and style for me and has influenced my personal and professional work. I later became a mentor for a new designer name Mimi. I shared this gem of inspiration with her as well.

As I looked on in admiration, it became a dream to be represented by her. Years pass, life happens....the dream is still there. My awesome husband Colin tells me to submit my work to LRS. I say "Oy, I'm not ready yet!" Then about 2 months ago, I have lunch with my friend Laura and SHE also says I should submit my work. A week later, low and behold she saw some of my work on Pinterest and asked if I had an agent. My jaw dropped and my heart almost beat out of my chest! I submitted my work and a partnership has been forged! I now have Lilla Rogers as a rep. See my work HERE. She has a team of amazing women working with her that I adore. Lilla and her team are a force to be reckon with and I feel so lucky and blessed. LRS is an international Art Rep agency at the top of their game and they get thousands of submissions every year. To be honest....it's a bit intimidating. Many of her artists, like Helen Dardik for example is definitely one of my art heros. That said, it's time to be fearless and take advantage of this opportunity! So to wrap it up full circle, I have the rep I've always dreamed of AND the designer I mentored, Mimi, became one of my best friends and now we're taking Lilla's Make Art That Sells class together a long with another great buddy of mine Flora Chang. Life is funny sometimes. I really believe we all have a quiet tune playing in our hearts that only we can hear. Our "inner boombox" and if we're the only ones who can hear it, we're the only ones that can sing it. So we need to sing, gosh darn it!!!!!!!


TokyoBunnie Blog!

Hello good folks of the world. It's been awhile. We have been so busy it feels as if we're planning another wedding. A kid graduating high school/getting ready for college, a kid getting ready to be born/remodeling our basement so we have a studio to work in because this little kid will need a room upstairs and then in addition to family stuff many many freelance blessings and happenings....
WOW! Are we lucky but MAN, it's a lot to take in at once. It's just kinda happened that way so we have to go with the flow and count our lucky stars :) We are doing our best to manage it all and make sure we soak in the amazing moments. That said, a blog will get mighty dusty whilst life is happening :) But we are never too busy to thank people that promote our work without even being requested to.
There is sooooo much good stuff out there so to be written about by an amazing blogger is always a treat. Wanna give a shot out to Tokyo Bunnie for choosing us! Thank you for your lovely feature of our work. We really appreciate it!


Alexander the Great

Toys," said Alexander Girard, "represent a microcosm of man's world and dreams; they exhibit fantasy, imagination, humor and love." Yes, this is one of many reasons why I identify with this artist. He had such a unique vision and his passions flowed into his work. Rumor has it that his textiles were all over some of the offices in Hallmark back in the day. Where is my time machine?
According to DWR, "Part decorative object and part toy, the Wooden Dolls were originally created for Girard's own use. He also may have planned their distribution through the "Textiles & Objects Shop" in New York City, which he operated for Herman Miller from 1961 to 1963. This mixed group of figures, some cheerful and others stern, is now being introduced in a special edition series based on documents and originals in the Alexander Girard Archive of the Vitra Design Museum. Available to purchase for $180 a pop at DWR. sigh....If you ever go to Santa Fe, New Mexico and you're a Girard fan you need to go to the International Folk Art Museum. During the Thanksgiving holiday my buddy Stephanie took a bunch of us stranded Hallmarkers home with her one year to New Mexico and her sweet grandmother lived in Santa Fe. We all decided to visit the museum and had a blast. I also fell backwards in my collapsable chair during dinner so yeah.....some unforgettable memories :)-S.W.


I like to make things!

Hello folks. Yes, it's monday.....BUT, there's some exciting stuff going on in the art world! And you can be a part of it. It's an online class that any artist, no matter what the level of experience, can sign up. It's called Make Art That Sells and it's taught by one of the most successful illustrators/art reps in the industry, Lilla Rogers. This woman knows her stuff. She also just came out with an awesome book called I Just Like To Make Things. If you shell out the dough and buy this little gem you won't be sorry. There is nothing else like this on the book market. After reading it, I imagine it's a preview into the class. Speaking of, back to the course...It's broken into two seconds, each one covering the different aspects of the illustration industry. Paper product, surface pattern bolt fabric, children's books, home decor....you name it. There's an assignment given each week and a critique as well to discuss strengths, what art does well in that particularly industry..and so much more. There are also major contributors from Land of Nod, Anthropologie and Chronicle to name a few. WHAT???!!!
The class is still taking on students so if this sounds great to you don't wait a minute more :) I signed up and I feel like it's an investment in my future. Another step in the right direction! If I'm coming off like a crazy info-mercial lady it's only because I'm genuinely excited about this. Sometimes the universe just puts things in front us at just the right time and we have to just..well....do it :)


Raleigh St. Bear

I love Wes Anderson, Bill Murray, and Bears...This is Raleigh St. Bear from a wildlife version of Royal Tenenbaums...Hope you enjoy!


So I'm kind of obsessed with etsy's stat page. It's a great tool! If your getting a lot of traffic it tells you exactly where it's coming from. I like this because we always feel extremely grateful when someone takes the time to share our work. Folks are busy these days and there is SO much great work out there. If someone is blogging about our stuff we know about it and we can actually get in contact with them and thank them! So long story short...Frankie, an Australian magazine I absolutely ADORE blogged about us and as a result we had 3 sales in one day!!! That may be small potatoes compared to some of you Etsy rock stars but to us it was a big deal :) We were thrilled and we just want to say thanks!
The universe works in weird ways my friends...I have a little field notebook that I keep in my purse and I wrote down Frankie when I first came a cross it months and months ago, just wanting to make a mental note to myself that I loved the mag....well that page just so happened to be flapped open in my purse the day the posted about us. W E I R D. 


We're having a BABY!!!

HUGE NEWS!!!! This has been a hard secret to contain. Phew!!!!! So glad we can spill the beans.....
In about 6 months we will have a new member of our family. We are both excited and...well...terrified. But more excited! Colin and I are just realists so of course I'm going to be honest. If you bring a child into the world, raising him or her to be a decent human being is the hardest, most important and most rewarding task you'll ever do.We have one pretty awesome human under our belt so we have some experience. She's off to Chicago about to start college! One bird leaves the nest and another one flies in ;) What an exciting time :)


Apple sticker scream....

Produce stickers are tiny, industrious and fun so I felt compelled to do a quick doodle after finishing my delicious snack. When I finished I realized....yep, that's where I'm at. Feeling a little kooky these days and I'm just gonna just let it all out. I'm thinking ill eat more fruit so I can more doodles!


March is roaring....

roaring right by I say!!!!! It's already the 7th for crying out loud. What the heck???? I guess it's true what they say. As you get older time just flys. Good thing we're having fun :) Wow, I'm just full of cliche' sentiments right now. Anyway, just wanted to share this little buddy of a gouache study I did for a top secret animal project that Colin and I are really pumped about. We started it awhile back and then dropped the ball. Hopefully there will be no more ball dropping. I simply CANNOT have it! hmmph! This little guy below is actually going to a friend of mine who runs a lovely lovely lil' blog called because it's awesome. I freaking love that name so much. It makes me feel better for over using that word. Cause I do. She's having a little one soon and wanted it for her little future leo baby! 


Do you hear Sirens?

I honestly don't think I will EVER tire of drawing girls. It's just too fun for me. I get my ideas from a lot of different sources. For example, every girl that is special to me (friend and family) is so different and awesome in their own way. I really appreciate them for all the things that make them who they are. My daughter has an awesome gap between her two front teeth that I REFUSED to get fixed even though I was pressured many times by our dentist. It's one of the many things that makes her smile HER smile! She is is the MOST special & unique girl I know and I'm so proud of her. (not biased or anything ;) Fire Braids was definitely an ode to her pearly whites. Also, I like the idea that I can be different whenever I want. Change is inevitable. So if I feel like having green hair one day, instead of damaging my super fine hair, then getting sick of it a week later, I can just draw a girl with green hair instead!!!! So all of these thoughts are constantly brewing in my girly noggin'....Hence, the Siren Series. I just love that word Siren. It's kinda sexy, smart and powerful. And NOT perfect. We should all embrace the crap out of our imperfections because they are truly beautiful! Hope you enjoy these curious ladies. 
From top to bottom, Lotus Waves, Chai Swirl, Fore Braids and Magenta Topknot.


Monster Draw

Hey folks. Happy Saturday :) Hope your chilling out this afternoon.
So we did the Monster Draw Rally again and had a blast. This year it was part of KC Design Week, which was rad. So basically you have one hour to complete a piece of art and then it's auctioned off. This year the proceeds went to providing a design scholarship to a lucky somebody. It's a little intimidating to draw in front of folks but after awhile you get used to it. They also let you get a head start on the piece before the event. We met some really awesome peeps. A really sweet couple named Melissa and Craig bought my Peru piece but couldn't decide if they wanted it for their bedroom or their daughters. A fellow artist named Eric happened to be from Holland! He and a buddy won Colin's "fight" piece but decided to cut in half so he could took take his half back to Holland and his American bud could keep his here. They added their own layer to the piece with their willingness to divide it. Supah' artsy and supah' coo-el. Yah'! New friends from around da' werld!