Saturday, January 31, 2015

That Summer

That summer we went camping like we had for years. Usually we went to the mountains, but this year Dad packed up the van and we drove out to the Carolina coast. We woke up to the crisp mornings and drank coffee and ate grits that Dad boiled on the travel stove. My little brother and I took turns playing in the wind and annoying each other. We raced to the top of Cape Hatteras lighthouse and were rendered speechless from the view. We threw pieces of bread crust into the air and watched the birds swarm around us, including "Boris" the one-legged seagull.

I remember haphazardly taking this photo with a cheap disposable camera. To this day it remains one of the best photos I accidentally took.

When we reminisce about the fun vacations we had, this one always comes up as one of our favorites. Thanks, Dad.


This is part of the 52 Hand-Lettered Challenge hosted by Pen + Peplum.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Read a Book

"One thing to do more often..."

And I'm trying to read more books. Each night I'm trying to read just one chapter of a book before bed. I will write more about what I'm reading for fun and for work soon enough.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Summer love list

I've been trying to use my actual handwriting in lettering. This is it. It is messy but very me. When this week's lettering prompt was to make a "summer love list," I couldn't think of a better time to use my actual handwriting. I mean, if I were legitimately writing a quick list of things I love about summer, this is what it would look like pretty much: mismatched, natural letters thrown on a page.

Is it summer yet?

Fun fact: the really awesome blogger that's running this 52 Hand-Lettered challenge is from Australia, so it's summer down there right now. With these freezing temps here in the south and the snow storm pounding the north, it felt bizarre to think about summer. But fun, because it made me think outside of my current surroundings.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015


When the year started, I was excited to begin Pen + Peplum's 52 Hand-Lettered Project. In this project, Miranti gives everyone a theme for the week, and you letter something surrounding that theme! This is a fun project for me because I get caught up in the work and forget to create things for fun.

I totally did the lettering part, but had completely slacked on digitizing any of it in lieu of crazy roller derby stuff and family stuff and life stuff. So over the next few days I'm going to show you my January creations and hopefully get back on track for a one a week post in February. That's my goal anyway.

The first week's prompt was to choose a word or phrase that would serve as your mantra for 2015. I chose the word "listen" for a few reasons:

I want to listen more to the tales of the generations that came before me. I want to soak in the stories they tell me-- about their youth, their triumphs, their failures, their heartaches. 

I want to listen to my friends more. I've talked a lot about myself over these past few years having gone through hell and survived. I wonder if I overlooked my friends in those moments of grief. I wonder if they needed to talk, too, and I didn't let them.

Conversely, I want to listen to myself more. I want to acknowledge my emotions instead of trying to cover them up with sarcasm and snark. I'm really angry, y'all. I've been overcompensating with busy and stress and skating. Since I've reintroduced yoga into my weekly practice, that hour of quiet has been both therapeutic and terrifying. But that's a post for another day.


Did you have a mantra for the year?

Monday, January 26, 2015

Currently on my Bookshelf

One of my New Year's goals was to read more. This has been my New Year's goal for the past few years and I've always fallen short. I've started with good intentions, but y'all-- I still haven't finished East of Eden. It's been like a year and a half.

I have this friend that can breeze through a book in a day or two. Last year she read 45 books. That's one book every eight days. I so envy her ability to read like she does. She reads different books than I do, but she reads nonetheless. She starts a book and finishes it. Her vocabulary is amazing. And her conversation is deep and thoughtful.

(Yep, I'm talking about you, Beth.)

So this year, my goal is to read one chapter a night of any book. Just one chapter.

Right now I'm digging into Art, Inc. by Lisa Congdon. I love this book so far. It's about taking your art and making it lucrative so you can live a fully artistic lifestyle. That's every artist's dream! Within the pages, she has short bios and interviews from various artists who are making a living through their art. It's full of great advice, and I'm finding some new artists that I really like.

Mary Kate McDevitt's book, Hand-Lettering Ledger, has been on my shelf for a little over six months, and I'm still working through the pages. She gives you the history of lettering styles, and then gives you space to do your own practice. She also teaches hand-lettering classes on (find her classes here, here, and here.)

Lastly, I got Modern Calligraphy by Molly Suber Thorpe for Christmas this year from my mother. I have referenced it at least fifty times this month I'd say. She is a really great teacher because she breaks down her craft. She's studied the history of calligraphy and teaches about finding your calligraphic style instead of teaching one strictly classical variation. I love that she believes in calligraphy as a living, breathing, developing art instead of just an ancient practice. You can take her calligraphy class on by clicking here. I highly recommend it.


What are you reading lately?
Is there a book you'd recommend I add to my to-read list?