Postcards are finished!

Well, the fronts are finished for the iHanna DIY Postcard Swap! They just need to be addressed and taken to the post office. Actually, I’m stressing a bit over what to write on the backs, I’m not much of a writer.

I’m happy with these 12…

dinny iHanna DIY postcard swap dinny iHanna DIY postcard swap dinny iHanna DIY postcard swap

Funny how plans change as I do things like this. As I start working on one, I change things that I DID like about another one. It is a process of evolving and knowing when to stop. Or simply time is forcing me to stop, because of a deadline.

Creating like this can be difficult for me because I miss the luxury of a computer. There is no way to nudge type, or make it bolder, or a few points larger, or the brown a little redder, or the yellow not so saturated… It is what it is. I find this helpful for me to loosen up and forgo perfection.

Not sure which 2 I will keep!

iHanna DIY Postcard Swap

Several weeks ago I read about iHanna’s Postcard Swap and REALLY wanted to do it, but thought it best not to commit until I knew the deadline would be met. Today I committed! The postcards WILL be completed by May 1! The backgrounds were started a bit ago with paint and custom carved stamps on 9×12 watercolor paper.

iHanna DIY Postcard Swap mixed media collage

The backwards text is from an old book. I used an image transfer technique of applying matte medium to the book page, adhering it to the painted page, and let it dry for a few minutes. By picking up a corner of the page, you can tell if the text is transferring. If it’s not, let it dry for a little longer. As I remove the page, a nice irregular amount of text remains behind. Not sure how to take photos of this because my hands were a mess and bits of sticky paper were all over the place! Here are some of the details.

iHanna DIY postcard swap

The papers got a bit warped, but they’ll get flatter – I hope!

Using a piece of scrap card stock, I cut a template as a guide for trimming. Basically a 4×6 window from a larger scrap. It helped me compose 13 postcards from my 5 originals. Here are my favorites, so far. After cropping I’ve been adding extra details. There was no theme when I started, but I’m sensing a “hello” theme. Who knows what they will end up like when I’m all finished.

dinny iHanna DIY postcard swap

dinny iHanna DIY postcard swap

Lilla Rogers: Bootcamp | Jell-O assignment

I must admit I wasn’t feelin the March assignment for Lilla Rogers Make Art That Sells: Assignment Bootcamp. Jell-o was the inspiration. Bolt fabric was the assignment. My color inspiration started out with this image from an old Terrain email that I pinned HERE.


The pattern was designed with Adobe Illustrator CC’s pattern maker. The pattern maker still has the annoying issue of a 1 pixel white line grid that appears when copying the pattern into Photoshop! I must be the only one who does this and is not bothered by it! I kept brightening the colors from my original palette as I worked on the design. Lilla suggested a pale nugget color palette, but that just made me sad, so I stayed with the happy colors.

This is my final submission.


All of this snow and cold weather has me in a funk and I’m cranky. Not quite sure what I can do to get out of it?!?! There are dozens of excuses I could make, but that won’t really help. It is what it is and I need to move on.

Tomorrow will be a better day!

Lilla Rogers: Bootcamp | cuckoo assignment

Consider me a soldier in Lilla Rogers Make Art That Sells: Assignment Bootcamp. Lilla’s book  I Just Like to Make Things: Learn the Secrets to Making Money while Staying Passionate about your Art and Craft has lots of very helpful and inspiring info. Her e-course MATS Make Art That Sells looks AMAZING, but I could not justify the cost. Not sure I if I would be able commit to it, while stressing over the cost. Bootcamp seemed perfect for me! It is spread over 6 months, so I can wait till the last minute if I need to, or I can diligently be working on it throughout the month. And it’s affordable for me.

For February, Cuckoo clocks were the inspiration. iPhone case, was the assignment. On the first day BOOTCAMP went live, I read about the inspiration. All month long I would think about it, but I was SO busy creating things for photoDUDS, there was no time to do any cuckoo creating.

The facebook group page scared me, because this was my first time doing something like this. I wanted to stay true to myself and not “do what everybody else was doing”. Self doubt was not going to stop me.

On Saturday, I blocked out some time and finally read about the assignment. Doesn’t it figure! The assignment was DUE in a few hours. Even though I’m not much of a sketcher, but I forced myself. My mind is ALWAYS thinking and seeing designs ALL of the time. It won’t stop! I pencil sketched various thoughts I had throughout the month.

dinnys garden cuckoo sketch

dinnys garden cuckoo sketch

Ink drawings and watercolors, that’s what I’ll do! However, I had too much DUDS stuff on my table to move, so off to the computer…

Color schemes are where I typically start. The inspiration image came from one of Lilla’s bootcamp posts. When creating a color scheme, I use Photoshop’s COLOR PICKER to select colors from my image,  and dump the colors into lots of  boxes. NOTE: Do this on a layer ABOVE the inspiration image, so it’s easier to adjust the colors to my liking. Even after doing this, the colors will get tweaked while working on a project.


In Adobe Illustrator, I started to draw the basic shapes, starting with the roof. While drawing in Illustrator, I have learned to save everything in bits, because you will always want to go back and change things later. My Illustrator desktop tends to look like this.

Illustrator desktop | cuckoo

Illustrator desktop | cuckoo

I’m an old school Illustrator user, since it was first developed in 1988 – they used to name the software by year back then. There are probably ways to do this better or more efficiently, but it’s what I’m used to and that works for me. The dot pattern to the clock body bothered my how the dots lined up or rather didn’t line up nicely, so it was edited out. Patterned papers were designed, but they didn’t thrill me.

The illustration was intended for use on an iPhone. Since the image would end up around 2″ wide, I didn’t want the details to get lost, so it remained simple.

Here’s my submission:



It made me smile and my daughter like it. I’m not sure my style is fitting in with the other artist type of work, but I need to be true to myself. After submitting, I wish I had made some changes {of course}! These designs may get worked into a few more options, but not sure. That all depends on what the next assignment is.


How I use watercolors in my digital designs.

I like to incorporate real watercolors into my digital designs. It gets me away from the computer {for a short time} AND I can get messy. My initial inspiration for this product was a repeating triangular shape. I didn’t have any real color scheme in mind because I figured I could make it whatever colors I wanted later in Photoshop.


I drew a hexagonal shape with pencil on my watercolor paper and started painting. I couldn’t let that extra space go to waste, so I drew parallel lines on and figured I could fit a few  smaller triangles. What was I thinking, I could totally be more efficient in my use of space! So I did a little math and tried this.


I really liked the direction this was going. But, I could get MORE triangles from a sheet of paper if they were smaller. So I did these.


I really started to like the colors. I did a few more sheets of triangles, in similar colors. Some of the triangle I did not like – but that’s what Photoshop is for. I erased the pencil lines before scanning. Here is the photoDUDS card I created with these watercolor triangles. I removed some of the triangles with a mask in Photoshop.


photos: Beth Forester Photography

MOSAIC, senior grad cards will be available in the photoDUDS store on Thursday. There are 8 different designs in the set, all with similar water color designs. I also painted some squares.