Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Folk Art Santas!

Last October, I looked in stores for color-your-own Christmas cards, and could not find any. So I decided to draw my own. And then I kept drawing. And then I realized I had enough drawings for a whole book. This is the result:

 Folk Art Santas is now available from Amazon! Astute observers with long memories might notice that the style is very similar to the embroidery fabrics I designed through Spoonflower. All of them were inspired by wood carvings I did back in the '90s.

The book has 33 coloring pages, including: 20 Card Fronts (you can either color the pages and then cut and glue them to card stock, or you can copy the designs directly on cardstock. No cardstock is included in the book), 6 Bookmarks, 8 Coloring Pages (which can be used to wrap small gifts), 4 Gift Bags, 2 Small Gift Cards, 8 Gift Tags, and 1 Santa Paper Doll with 12 outfits!

Here's a sneak peek:

I've already started coloring my copy.

Both pages were colored with Prismacolor Markers and a white gel pen.

Friday, June 17, 2016

It's so hard to keep a secret- Now with 100% more Foreign Body!

Way back in March, I started the process of putting the 6 Tory Bauer Mysteries back in print, through CreateSpace (the same folks who published The Nut Hut, and the two paper doll coloring books). It has been a long, slow process, and I had to keep quiet about it because I wanted to surprise the artist who did the wonderful new covers for the series. That artist also happens to be my son, Curtis Taylor

Though Foreign Body is still in the pipeline (I think it'll be ready next week), the first 5 books are ready, and I absolutely could not wait one minute longer to show off these amazing new editions.

The books are the same as the original paperbacks from Avon/Harper Collins, but in trade paperback format (larger than mass market pbs), with all of the covers Curtis did for the eBook editions.

I am absolutely thrilled.

Lemee tellya, it never gets old.

Foreign Body is now up and running!!!. And in case anyone needs a reminder- this is the series reading order (they were originally published out of order).

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Tie Dye Shoes #2- It's a learning process, lemee tellya

Okay, so I wanted to try Sharpie tie-dyeing colored shoes.

So far, so good. I was envisioning soft blues and greens, spreading and touching to make a nice all-over pattern.

Well, that didn't turn out the way I expected. The darkest blue wicked, but most of the colors just sort of softened at the edges.

These shoes have a more tightly woven canvas, so that might have impeded the color blending.

After they dried, I tried dotting more of the darkest blue and applied more alcohol.

Better, but still not what I had in mind. I let them dry, rinsed, and let them dry again.

And then I took an opaque white pen and drew little spirals all over. That would have been perfect except that the white ink wasn't as opaque as I hoped it would be. So I then used a fine blue Prismacolor brush marker (alcohol base ink in that one too, so it won't wash out), and drew more spirals.

I can live with this- in fact I like it. It's not what I had in mind, but it's a learning process....

Friday, May 6, 2016

Tie Dye Canvas Shoes with Sharpies and Rubbing Alcohol!

You can use any Sharpie colors. You probably want to make sure that any colors that touch will blend properly. I was careful to ROYGBIV all of my colors. If you draw purple and orange together, you'll get blended brown (which you may want- I don't know your life). Same with red/green, blue/orange, and purple/green. 
 Any canvas shoes will work. White is nice, but not necessary. As long as the ink shows on the fabric, you can work with any color ink or base.

Draw. Make them match. Or not. Up to you.

Use a pipette or spray bottle to apply undiluted rubbing alcohol to the shoes. Sharpies have an alcohol-based ink, so the alcohol dilutes and blends the lines, and softens the edges. The colors will start blending almost immediately. It's fun to watch.

Left is before alcohol, right is after

Prettiest shoe insides ever.

Wear gloves

Let the ink cure for 24 hours, then rinse in cold water to get rid of any residual alcohol. Allow to dry.

Lace 'em up, and WOOT!

Sharpie ink is not water soluble, so my feet will not be tie-dyed if the shoes get wet.