Tuesday, December 29, 2009

On the road

I am traveling and will be back to posting soon. In the meantime here is Angelina from What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?. This is about what my family's living room looked like after xmas (presents presents everywhere)... hope you all had a lovely holiday!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Furball Friday: Happy Christmas

In lieu of a tree, this year we put lights on George.





He was none too cooperative and tried to eat them a number of times.





Monday, December 21, 2009

Snowflakes on parade

Lately I've felt the need to tackle the little things that always fall to the end of my to-do list. Maybe its because the year is drawing to a close or maybe its post-deadline mania, but I've been taking great pleasure organizing, mending, and rearranging our apartment... hemming pants that have been sitting in the corner of the bedroom for months, cleaning out the flat files, and purging everything I can stand to part with. It feels soooo goooood.

For the longest time I've been meaning to frame my Robert's Snowflakes properly. I was lucky enough to win hand painted snowflakes by Alissa Imre Geis and Giselle Potter a few years back, two of my most prized possessions. Since then I am embarrassed to say they have been sitting in sloppy frames that didn't fit. No more!

I found these two little 3D frames at Ikea and got out my snowflakes...



and of course my trusty YES Glue, that stuff glues everything.



Then I cut some little rectangles out of foam core, two for each snowflake.



And glued them down, one on top of another, to some archival acid-free mat board.



Then I very carefully put a little dab of glue on the stack of foam core and placed a snowflake on top. I was weary at first of putting glue anywhere near these little paintings, but in the end I think they will be better preserved this way (and there was not much on the back of them, unlike some snowflakes).





Once they were dry I put the mat board in the back of the frames and voila- floating snowflakes!



Now on to going through my fabric stores and organizing my paper drawer. I just looove an organized paper drawer.

A publishing year in review: some great links

Alvina posted some links to articles about the state of publishing on BRG today- and not all as bleak as you might think, though eye opening...

Ever wondered how Barnes & Noble chooses which books go on the display tables? Read about Bookstore Baksheesh.

The NY Times article Should e-Books Be Copy Protected? debates whether digitizing novels helps or hurts sales of their paper counterparts (still no mention of picture books... I'd like to hear some predictions about how ebooks are going to impact kid's books!)

Agent Nathan Bransford talks about the year in publishing: "These are challenging times for publishers. And yet I think it's a great time for authors..."

And last but not least, if you haven't yet heard about the end of Kirkus, read on.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Thursday, December 17, 2009

New sketches

The sketches are almost done on the revisions to a new project, long in the works. The book doesn't have a title yet, but the story is nearly done and I'll start the paintings in the new year (updates to come). Its all about a bunny named Greta. Yes, I said a bunny. At last!! SO excited.



Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Monday, December 14, 2009

Risd Sale 09 recap

The sale on Saturday was a lot of fun as usual. Here is Grace and I at our table where we dutifully sold books and prints from morning til night.



Grace brought a sea of Lissy dolls that looked adorable all piled together.



For my part I had lots of bird prints, books, and the buttons you all so graciously helped me to design.



Throughout the day we couldn't help but ogle these amazing scarves by Jeung-Hwa Park directly across from our booth... so tempting to scoop them up!



Just look at the incredible colors.



I always love chatting with Dorothy Imagire, who generously traded with me a few years ago. I have two of her amazing waxed photos in my kitchen.



This year she had these really cool table settings with phrases painted and etched on the surface. The silverware said things like "vegan" and "gluten-free".



I love this plate (click to enlarge).



I also discovered the work of the very talented Deborah Foreman, who makes these beautiful circle paintings. I love the textures and color combinations.





All in all it was a fun day and a good sale. Its nice to go back and run into old friends and make new ones. After the sale we got together with Alvina and Libby for our annual dinner and resolution setting- our fourth year!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Chicken Spaghetti

...just wrote a lovely review of What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?, read it here!

"Hanukkah starts tomorrow night, and Christmas is just two weeks away. What to do with the leftover gift wrap? Save it to make next year's holiday cards. In What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?, Anna Alter gives clear, concise instructions for that activity and a number of other reduce-reuse-recycle projects."

Also apparently What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe? is a nominee for a Cybil award in the Nonfiction/Informational Picture Book Category. Its a long list at present, but nice to be on it. Yay!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Getting ready

This Saturday Grace and I are sharing a table at the RISD Holiday Alumni Sale down in Providence. We'll be selling books, prints, and other book related goodies! For me this means a trip to Ikea and framing late into the night...



I usually sell inkjet prints of illustrations (these bird prints are always a big seller). But this year, with the help of my photographer dad and his printing genius, I've upgraded to archival giclée prints. They look SO much better than what I was printing at home, almost exactly like the originals!



Come by and say hello if you're in the area, I will give you a free Abigail Spells button!

ALUMNI HOLIDAY ART SALE 2009: December 12
10am-5pm, Rhode Island Convention Center
One Sabin Street, Providence
admission: $7; children under 14 + current RISD students (with ID): free

For directions, click here.

Monday, December 07, 2009

New painting

(click to enlarge)

Friday, December 04, 2009

Furball Friday

I give it a 9.5. A little sloppy on the foot alignment.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Public Thinktank radio interview

I just found the link to my interview last week, click here to listen. We talked about Abigail Spells, What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?, recycling, and the role of kid's books in the classroom. As an avid fan of radio (I listen to NPR all day while I paint) it was so fun to be on a show, small as the station is.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Desmond the cowboy

Another painting in progress post for you from Disappearing Desmond!





Monday, November 30, 2009

Chronicle Books sale



This is a REALLY great deal from Chronicle Books. Shop their web site before December 4th and get 35% off and free shipping. I love the design of their art books, stationary, crafty goodies, and of course children's books. Just look at this this great journal:



Adorable book of prints:









Not to mention this lovely stationary set:



(hint, hint)

What can you do with an old tin can?

In What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe? I included an activity that reuses a tin can to make a lantern... but when I saw this lovely and inventive use of a tin can it made me gasp in awe! It was made by Anna Johansson, fellow RISD alum, and artist with a table next to mine at this fall's RISD art sale. She was generous enough to trade with me so that I could take it home and hang it in my studio window.



She also makes roosters:



Owls:



And earrings punched out of tin cans:



Inspiring, no?

Friday, November 27, 2009