31 December 2008

Lawn Dandruff 2K8

On Monday, December 22nd, one of my favorite holiday events occurred: Lighted Lawn Dandruff Night. It basically consists of Tracey, Sal, Evan, Ann, and I piling into a car, flasks in hand (except for our trusted driver of course), the tripod ready, and this year... snowpants and gloves as our adorned costumes. Sounds stupid right? Nooo way. I really love to see the neighborhoods and the sometimes amazing, sometimes horrid taste in holiday decorations. Here's a compilation of this year's finds. Penguins and teddy bears seemed to be the popular items.

At one moment, in the bowels of Raynham, I spotted a wonderous inflatable penguin. I had to have it. Leaping over a 2 foot snowbank with the tripod, I crunched through the expansive lawn. The snow was hard, but was determined. Spiking the tripod into the snow and then focussing my lens, the family appeared in the windows. Of course, like an insane person... I freaked and ran. Leaping over the 2 foot snow bank onto the street where the 'buru awaited... my legs gave out from the cold temperatures. My knees slammed into the tar, and my body spilled to the ground. But I saved the tripod!! The knees on the other hand... not so good. I am just hoping I didn't hurt my patellar tendon on top of all the other damage in there form previous injuries. It was worth it just to hear everyone yelling "GET UP!!! RUUUNNN!", as a car was approaching me in the middle of the road. The panic level was almost like a T-Rex chasing me though the woods. Good times.

Last but not least... here's the merry party.

This years motto, "Flasks up! Pants Down!" While no one actually took their pants off we saw many risque inflatable animals with no pants. Donald Duck it, you crazy critters!

Happy New Year to all!

20 December 2008

First Big Snow!

I like snowstorms. Is it obvious?? Here's some pics!

17 December 2008

Design Stars Boulevard in HAND

Awhile back I was featured in Taiwan's DPI great magazine. They have amazing talent showcased in each of their issues and I was thrilled again when they asked me to be in the Design Stars Boulevard, their first ever interview collection. I JUST got the copy of the whole issue the other day and I had to share. WAY EXCITED. Kind of makes me feel a little big legit. I need to get a subscription, and learn how to read Taiwanese.

Korean Cover

I've just started on a cover for a historical chapter book about a Korean girl. It's been really fun to research not only the costume of the Choson (or Joseon) Period but also the customs and ceremonies of that time era. Lasting for approximately five centuries, the Choson period consolidated its absolute rule over the land of Korea, encouraged the entrenchment of Confucian ideals and doctrines in Korean society, imported and adopted Chinese culture, and saw the height of classical Korean culture, trade, science, literature, and technology. However, the dynasty was severely weakened during the late 16th and early 17th centuries, when successive invasions by neighboring Japan and Qing China virtually overran the peninsula, leading to an increasingly harsh isolationist policy for which the country became known as the Hermit Kingdom.

I've also taken an interest in the aristocratic traditional costume of the time as well. The "hanbok" is the traditional Korean dress. It is often characterized by vibrant colors and simple lines without pockets. Although the term literally means "Korean clothing", hanbok today often refers specifically to Joseon Dynasty-style semi-formal or formal wear that is worn during traditional festivals or celebrations. The women's hanbok consists of a chima meaning a wrap-around skirt and jeogori which refers to a jacket. The ensemble is often called chima jeogori. The men's hanbok is comprised of jeogori and baggy pants called baji. Gwanbok is a Korean general term referring to all business attires of government officers given by government. There were several types of gwanbok according to status, rank, and occasion and they are very specific. Commoners were restricted by law as well as resources to cotton at best. The upper classes wore a variety of colors, though bright colors were generally worn by children and girls and subdued colors by middle-aged men and women. Commoners were restricted by law to everyday clothes of white, but for special occasions they wore dull shades of pale pink, light green, gray, and charcoal. Both males and females wore their hair in a long braid until they were married, at which time the hair was knotted: the man’s in a topknot sangtu (상투) on the top of the head and the woman’s in a ball just above the nape of the neck. Women of high social backgrounds wore wigs. The bigger the better!

I found a great site that helps me understand the layers of this multitude of cloth. Enjoy!

Here's the first few ideas for this cover.

15 December 2008

Holiday Crunch

I typically find myself more than overwhelmed around this joyous time of the year. Maybe it's the convergence of publishing deadlines, the end of the school semester, or the impending doom of a new year (which means getting taxes in order!!!), but I am ALWAYS freaking out in December. I think it can be a very good thing, making me avoid and miss holiday parties that have holiday beverages. No need to get crazy up in the egg nog and become the jpg forward of the year!

So, from now until mid January, I will be slaving away like the elves in Santa's workshop. Woah. Maybe I AM an elf in Santa's workshop! Here are a few images from Peach Boy. Ho Ho HO!

11 December 2008

Woodland Party

I just finished another greeting card, and it's another oozing with cute piece. Sometimes cute is fun, but when you are stressed and freaking out, those smiling animals seem to be mocking you when painting them. I love Peaceable Kingdom Press, so I was pumped to deliver another card to them.


10 December 2008

Cybils 2008!

Holy cow, I am on the slow bus for sure! This busy fall has left me behind in any and all news. I'm literally drowning in a deep dark ocean of deadlines (I hope to have posts of all the projects soon). BUT I saw that Hush Little Dragon, by Boni Ashburn, was nominated for a Cybils award! How cool! Here's a bit about the awards by Anne Levy:

"We wanted a literary competition that combined the freewheeling democracy of the Internet with the thoughtfulness of a book club. Cybils lets the public nominate books here on our Cybils blog, but then bloggers team up to pick the finalists and winners. The winning books must combine quality and "kid appeal."

It's the third annual celebration, so definitely check it on out. All of the books listed there are pretty darn amazing, and I am honored to be included. Buy books this holiday season! They last forever!