Friday, June 26, 2015

Get Inspired -- Gal powered animation pioneers

Equality in focus today with landmark decision from US Supreme Court. Big change often arrives after a long journey of very small, very slow steps... but its refreshing to reach milestones. The more inclusive we can be, the more we all learn and appreciate about each other.
In that light, I'm sharing here a link to a post on the Animation World Network website. It highlights a series of animation shorts created to recognize these female animation pioneers:
These shorts were created by students at the Gobelins (art) school in France
for the 2015 Annecy International Animated Film Festival.
Here are photos of the artists featured .. along with an image from the short film about them.. I've also included links for more biographical info on these artists.

Mary Blair
Alison De Vere
Claire Parker
Evelyn "Eve" Lambert
 and Charlotte (Lotte) Reiniger
Take a look at at these shorts to see how today's animators created tributes to leaders in their field. Talent is not defined by gender....

Monday, June 22, 2015

Get Inspired -- Anna-Maria Jung and T-shirts 101 UPDATED June 24

Fell in love with this image "League of Extraordinary Scientists" on a t-shirt... and learned the artist is Anna-Maria Jung.

 You can find her on facebook
as Missqueenmob on Deviantart
on tumbr
and online shops like Society 6
and Etsy

She just launched this new t-shirt!!! Talk about shining a light on gal-powered contributions to pop culture....
order it here

She brings so much charm to some of my favorite subjects ..

"Good Times with Science"

"Race of the Patronuses"

Her image"The Captains Fall" is an outstanding example of looking at familiar things (or classic images) in a new way..

She not only posts images on all sorts of social media platforms .. she's  monetizing her art and make it available as t-shirts, prints, totes etc...

Best of all.. she shares her experience in these ventures!

As of June 22, she has 4 posts up in her on-going series about licensing and t-shirts up right now on her blog "My Pocket-Universe" Here is her list of the topics so far:

Article series about licensing and shirts

As soon as I learned about this series, via a post on her Facebook page, I saw the potential to share her valuable insights with others. I contacted her to get her permission, which she granted right away,  to share links to her blog post ...

Thank you Anna-Maria Jung for sharing so much .. and empowering fellow indie artists with your example and experience.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Little Golden Books -- history and links UPDATED 2.17

Many of us are familiar with the charming art and stories in the Little Golden Books (LGB) imprint from publisher Random House.
The books have a distinctive "foil" wrapped spine...
Many Little Golden Books were produced around holiday or family themes ..
and there were also many that used licensed characters from film and tv.
There has been a long partnership between Little Golden Books and Disney.
The books are a long-running series of modestly priced, but beautifully presented early reader items. Not only have they inspired generations of readers --- these books are often cited by artists as the works of illustration that captivated them and kindled their own interest in the visual arts. Little Golden Books artists include a who's-who of illustration icons. This page of the official website for illustrator and visual development artist Gustaf Tenggren highlights his era at Little Golden Books

Just a few reasons why artists aspire to adding a Little Golden Books assignment to their portfolio...

From the Random House website:
Many famous writers and illustrators created Little Golden Books, notably Margaret Wise Brown, author of Goodnight Moon (Harper). Her Little Golden Books were often illustrated by Garth Williams, most famous for his illustrations for Charlotte’s WebStuart Little, and the Little House series. Richard Scarry began his career at Golden Books and did most of his most famous books here, from Little Golden Books to his beloved oversized books Cars and Trucks and Things that Go, and Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book Ever! Eloise Wilkin, famous for her stunning paintings of cherubic children, illustrated dozens of Little Golden Books. Caldecott medalists James Marshall, Tibor Gergely, Leonard Weisgard, Alice and Martin Provensen, and Trina Schart Hyman have illustrated Little Golden Books.

There are collectors for the in print and out-of-print titles...

.....and even licensed products for kids based on characters from the series..

One retailer has just launched a line of bedding with classic LGB characters...

There are several in-print LGB titles in stock on the Stuart Ng Books website. Of course, current Little Golden Books are available at large online and retail sources. Stuart's selection highlights books that have illustrations by artists that he is following and/or carrying in the store.

Here are a few of my favorites from the current offerings at Stuart Ng Books.

If you're a fan of the Little Golden Books, or an artist inspired by them, here are links to some additional sources for background on the series:

"About Little Golden Books" from official website (Random House Kids)

Post from "Mental Floss" with quick primer on history of Little Golden Books

Wikipedia entry with general history on series and characters

UPDATE 2.25.17
NPR story on 75th anniversary of Little Golden Books

Get Inspired -- link for Dice Tsutsumi story on CNN

Posts with artist Daisuke "Dice" Tsutsumi have appeared here on the blog.. dating back to his "Sketchtravel" project: a sketchbook full of drawings by icon artists that was hand carried between participants and finally auctioned off to benefit the childrens' literacy and education charity Room to Read

The published version of Sketchtravel made its US debut at the Stuart Ng Books booth at CTNX in 2011. Dice is pictured below (l) with animation icon Hayao Miyazaki (r), who was the artist who completed the last work in the original Sketchtravel sketchbook.

Here are links for my blog posts with the Sketchtravel story...
This inspiring book is still available on the SNB website in two versions:

the original French

the deluxe edition with a collector box:

Dice is busier than ever these days ... including mentoring other artists as an instructor with Schoolism.
More about Dice on his own website, Simple Stroke

Dice was recently profiled on CNN. Here's the link for the CNN story:

Monday, June 8, 2015

Kickstarter "Acquerell III" book from Alina Chau -- UPDATED with link for book launch June 20 at Center Stage Gallery

Even though I'm an old-school dinosaur who likes brick and mortar stores with actual books in them, and I often vent about the ravages of Amazon on the lives of small businesses... I have to appreciate how the internet has allowed all sorts of new ways for indie artists to get their work produced and distributed.

This posts celebrates the watercolor book project from Alina Chau.

It's so heartwarming to be able to send a little financial support directly to an artist and help make a dream project come true. Even better when you get the book and extras delivered (prints and stickers)

Some of my favorite images from the book...

 The book includes some "in progress" images...
 A section of travel sketches...
 And a final series of pages with details of her process...
Bonus image here is details from Alina Chau original bonus item I was also lucky to win.

Kickstarter artists come up with so many clever awards at various levels of pledging. Lots of room for donations large and small.....

Alina will be appearing June 20th at Center Stage Gallery in Burbank for an art show and book launch. Here's link with more info