Tuesday, February 02, 2010 8:04 AM


This weekend our elementary school had their fundraiser - a play written by, directed by, starring, choreographed by (you get the picture) the parents. It is THE social event of the year, and everyone involved looked like they were having the time of their lives. And what did I contribute?

The logo design, of course!

These are the roughs I did initially to get a feel for what everyone wanted... it was clear that it was going to be a logotype, but with a little extra something. The one we went with was an homage to "Slumdog Millionaire" using the broken type, lowercase letters, and uneven baseline. (The plot echoes some of the movie, so there was a reason for it.)

Is that your final logo?

It brought back good memories from high school of seeing people wearing the shirts in the play - although I've been also seeing them around town, on kids at school, even at church. Trust me, it's not the design, it's the message.

The cast in their believe shirts while singing "Don't Stop Believing" (of course).

Paul lent his considerable talents to the pit band! Here he is warming up while Angela (fluffy head in front) looks on.

One of the coolest things was that at the finale - again, in homage to Slumdog Millionaire, the entire cast, including the teachers and principal, and all the students in the audience - got up and did the "Jai Ho" dance from the end of the movie. It was just fabulous. The kids practiced it at the end of classes, and even at a Girl Scout meeting!

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Friday, January 29, 2010 7:35 AM

kids helping kids (and you can too)

I've been busy this week making art to help the children of Haiti. No, not the new painting... my very talented brother-in-law Marc asked if I'd help design a CD for a benefit fundraiser for the Children of Haiti this Sunday in New York. Of course I said heck yes!

The benefit is called Kids Helping Kids. It's a family show, and looks like it's going to be loads of fun! The CDs will be available at the show at The Bowery Poetry Club on Sunday afternoon, January 31. If you are in the area and want to go, it certainly looks as though A Splendid Time Is Guaranteed For All. Check out all the acts and more details here.

Of course, me being me, I couldn't make just one version of the cover.... here's the one they chose, followed by the other two covers. I'm curious to know: which cover would make you most likely to buy it and donate money to kids in need?

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Thursday, August 06, 2009 4:36 PM


Finally, catching up on things... I wanted to spread the news to those who don't already know that I got to design a theme with Patrick McDonnell for iGoogle! It's a MUTTS theme, natch. It's been so very exciting to get to be a part of this, and it's also been so very hard not to spill the beans!

The theme changes several times during the day, and there are even a few Easter eggs... see if you can find them!

Further Sophie update: recovery has been very slow for the Sophster, but today she actually opened her eyes, played with her brother and sister, and drew a picture! Woo!

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Monday, November 17, 2008 6:40 PM

PC to Mac : copying settings

So... after nearly 15 years of working at my day job solely on PCs, we've finally made the move to Macs. (And there was much rejoicing.) I have the same programs for both (and I should mention that I've done all my studio work on a Mac!) but the little things that make a program customized - the settings - were going to be time-consuming to duplicate. Most of this is applicable for copying settings between any two computers - I didn't know how to do this before today, but it works! This saved me so much time today.

PDF settings
I have special PDF settings that I've made myself for sending things to the printer with bleeds and cropmarks. Check this out: search on your own computer for files named "joboptions". Copy them to the other computer, then install them. Open Indesign, and then choose Adobe PDF Presets/Define. Then choose Load and load your job option file. Done!

Dreamweaver settings
All the instructions are here. If you're the only one using your computer, you want "Back up my settings"; it copies the passwords too. Then on the other computer, go to "Manage Sites" and choose "Import." Just note that each import has 2 parts, the first asks you to import the .ste file, and the second asks you where the local files are. I ♥ this tip.

Guess what? True type fonts work on the Mac! Just copy them from your Windows/Fonts on your PC into Library/Fonts on the Mac. The only fonts I'm having a problem with are Postscript fonts; ones that I had to install through ATM aren't crossing over. But the amount of those fonts are very small compared to the fonts I do already have (and use more frequently).

Sorry if this is stuff you already knew, but it saved me a huge hunk of time this morning! Hope someone else can find it useful and spend less time on file management and more time creating!

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Wednesday, June 25, 2008 8:30 AM

Dress quest

With the new 'do, and the realization that half of the clothes in my closet are not me anymore - not because of the haircut, but because all of a sudden it seems like most of the skirts and dresses in my closet are either down to my ankles or are miniskirts, which are hard to get down on the ground and help a kid while wearing - anyway, I went in search recently for some summer dresses. Or skirts. I wasn't going to be picky.

What I did find, was that pretty much anything in stores (and in catalogs) right now is meant for someone with a decidedly different figure than mine. I will come right out and say it: I have curves. Curves, okay? I more or less have an hourglass figure. I have a small waist. I also have certain rules that I have developed over the years:

  • I do not wear anything that makes me look like an opera singer.

  • I do not wear clothes that don't fit me.

  • For the love of God, no more black. (I used to wear it all the time. I'm done with it.)

  • I am not, and never will be, "sporty".

  • While I am blessed in certain departments, I have no desire to show them off to the average passerby, thank you.

  • I have an aversion to paying $36 for a skirt made of t-shirt material.

So it's very frustrating to hit the summer sales hoping to scoop up a sundress or two, when everything - everything! has an empire waist. Or is baby-doll-styled. Once or twice I found something workable, and just needed it to be bigger (or smaller), and lo and behold, either there were none in my size, or they were black. Or dark brown.

What's a girl to do?

After doing a little searching online, I'm thinking the answer is to find a wrap dress - I have never worn one, but it looks like that would address some of the issues. The other idea is to go find a pattern I like, and make a dress myself. Then once I found something that worked, I could go get lots of fun materials like this and this and this and make them different.

Interesting links:

Clone yourself a fitting assistant by using duct tape. Genius. Seriously. I want to do this.

Found this through Metafilter (some NSFW): I have made almost ALL these mistakes. And they're right about the correct-fitting undergarments making all the difference.

Metafilter thread: I need to dress for success, but in the office not at the bar

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Tuesday, November 06, 2007 8:23 AM


My cards arrived yesterday! (Squeeee!) While I'm really excited to have them, it wasn't what I planned on. Remember? I wanted 2-sided cards. I was going to have three different designs. And then the printer died and needed to be resurrected, and the cardstock we got wasn't printable on both sides, and I needed to hurry up and just get them done already*. But I am getting a thrill about having so many of them, and the kids are each carrying one around with them. Petey calls it his "library card" and it almost went to bed with him last night.

Right now, I'm completely exhausted, which I thought was some dire disease (note: do NOT look up symptoms online or you will terrify yourself needlessly) until my mom pointed out the 97 billion things I've been doing in the past two weeks, and not eating because I'm not hungry, and not sleeping. Surprise! It adds up. So instead of pushing it, instead of crawling up the stairs to put yet another piece of paper in the printer, I'm going to take it easy today. My mom is very philosophical about all this. "You take whatever you have finished by Sunday, and we set it up." That's about it. So I'm giving it up and trusting that whatever I have will be enough.

* Can I just say here how much I love Printing For Less... who also did my Christmas cards. They called me up before sending the proof because they wanted to make sure the blue was going to print the way I liked. Consulted Pantone colors with me. And then went and looked at my website, because they were genuinely interested in my artwork. They totally rock.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2007 9:52 PM

asking again

Sooooooo ... I have the nifty glossy card stock, I'm about to start printing out business cards. I listened to your feedback; my name is bigger, the other info's on the back, and even though you can't see it, the font is more interesting. I definitely want to make the two fairy cards, but then I'm thinking, no matter how gorgeous my tree/girl/heart cards are, should I be handing them out for free at the fair when people should be buying the print instead? What do you guys think? Make them, but don't bring them to the craft fair?

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Friday, October 05, 2007 8:32 AM

in which I am very confused

Thank you, everyone, for your input into the cards. But now I am so confused I don't know what to pick. :) At least I like all of them! So I'm going to sit on it over the weekend, print them all out, look at them carefully, and remind myself that I am only printing 100 at a time, so it's not a major committment. I run out, I print different ones. It's picking the first 2 that's stumping me...

What I did yesterday was big-time scheduling. I had the calendar out, and amidst the class trips, doctor's visits, and playdates, I carved out definite dates that I would do two shopping trips (one for the art store, one for Christmas shopping), and one date to place orders online. I also snagged the first slot next Saturday morning at our local photo studio to get the kiddos' portrait done. Last time we did it, they had to resort to Photoshop tricks to get the three of them in the same pic, and it was reassuring to know that it wasn't just me who had to do that.

I've also been compiling a load of helpful links, here are a few:
Flickr's "Do More" page - lots of options to print and make things out of your images. I thought I wanted to make the Moo cards, but now that I see the dimensions (long and skinny) I don't think they're going to work for me. Still keep exploring the other options from their partners to see if I missed something. :)

Preparing for a Craft Fair - this and many other posts (and wonderful comments from you guys!) are getting the old brain ticking overtime. Keep 'em coming!

Printing - while I dearly, dearly love this printer, they don't do short runs on business cards. So I'm going to give these guys a try.

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Thursday, October 04, 2007 8:05 AM

help me pick

As I mentioned yesterday, I figured out that I can swing more than one business card, which is good, because out of all the designs I came up with, it boiled down to which picture people liked best. I revised them, figuring that if I had two (or three) that went together, they should actually match as a set, so... which ones work for you? I have two that are my definite favorites, but I'm not saying which 'till people weigh in. For the vertical ones, the contact info will go on the back. What do you think? (And did I overlook some piece of artwork that would make for a great card?)

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Friday, August 24, 2007 9:54 PM


I'm so excited! I got to design the 2008 Mutts calendar! I usually don't share too much about my day job, but this is too cool to keep to myself. :)

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