August 31, 2012

Petoskey trip: beautiful

Oh, how I do love my dear Michigan.

Credit to my dear husband for this beautiful sunset shot

Both images are at Petoskey State Park

August 29, 2012

pink and green and stone

I saw this stone along the shoreline at my grandfather's cottage on Lake Michigan. The pinkish red streak is naturally occurring in the boulder. The green is some kind of algae or seaweed growing on the rock. I was struck by the fabulous color combination. Red and green are opposites on the color wheel so they are very powerful together. Let this inspire you in creative ways!

August 27, 2012

shelf refresh

I recently went on a frenzy of shelf decorating. Office type things and children type things were creeping up onto shelves that are supposed to be full of pretty things. Plus I had new family photos to put in the frames. A serious update was in order!

I like to keep color palettes grouped

Feathers on display in a simple glass jar

Round objects grouped together, including natural treasures

August 24, 2012

Petoskey trip: face rocks

In the midst of our Petoskey hunt, we also came across a collection of rocks that appear, charmingly enough, to have faces. Our four-year-old was especially good at noticing these cuties!

August 22, 2012

"X" marks the spot

Nothing is graphically stronger than two intersecting lines. I prominently featured the new logo for the teen film festival in this simple poster design. For once I feel like I was able to leave the poster design as simple as it really deserves to be.

August 20, 2012

teen film festival logo

Another fun project for me! This festival has been running for several years but this is the first year my library is joining in as a partner. The time had come for a new name and a new logo that reflected the new partnership.

The design we ended up going with was actually one of my first ideas.

Here it is in black and white:

And here it is in color:

As you can see, I based the design on a stop light. Red (stop) with the exclamation point in the little speech bubble represents having  an idea and message to share. Yellow (slow down) with the film reel symbolizes taking the time to create your film. And green (go) with the eye references the actual festival where your film will be viewed by an audience.

August 17, 2012

Petoskey trip: fossil finds!

One of the very best parts of our family vacation to Petoskey, Michigan was, of course, the finding the famous "Petoskey stones." The stones are actually fossils of the coral that once lived in the shallow warm ocean that covered my fair state long long ago. They are amazingly abundant in this part of the state and therefore not too difficult to find. Just reach down in the water for a handful of sand, rock, and pebble. Shake gently to sift out the sand and pluck the Petoskey stone that is awaiting you.

My husband and I both got very obsessive with our searching. In fact, my four-your-old accused us of "ignoring your children while you look at rocks."

Here's just a sampling of what we found:

I am considering trying to polish up one that is already somewhat smooth. The easiest thing to do would be to dump them into a vase or a dish. The beautiful patterns are only noticeable when the stones are wet. They actually appear to be plain gray once dried. I'll keep you posted on any potential Petoskey projects!

August 15, 2012

amazing map quilt inspiration!

So apparently I can't stop talking about quilts this week.

Recently I was searching for an image of all the Great Lakes (as opposed to just Michigan) that I could trace for something at work when I came across this magnificent quilt.

Great Lakes Quilt by Haptic Lab

This same company – Haptic Lab – uses maps of cities to create quilts. The quilting itself represents the streets! Amazing, beautiful, subtle. I am seriously in awe!

New York City by Haptic Lab

detail of New York City by Haptic Lab

August 13, 2012

quilt inspiration at the Pentwater Art Fair

"Geometric Tree" art quilt by Sandy Dekker

I went to the Pentwater Fine Arts Fair in July with my mom and sisters. I would highly recommend the show. There was a lot of quality work and beautiful items. Plus, who doesn't love a small town up north along the shores of Lake Michigan?

I had a lovely conversation with quilter Sandy Dekker. She made some smaller scale abstract quilts to hang on the wall as art. They were so very beautiful. She did the quilting on the machine but completely free form in poetic and flowing organic lines. She also sewed on tiny sparkly beads for added dimension. I am so impressed. Lucky for all of us, you can view her work and purchase it from her etsy shop!

I am very inspired to make a small quilt just for the purpose of hanging on the wall. What fun it would be to have a place in mind and create something perfect for that very spot.

I also want to make mention of the Grand Traverse Beach Glass Company. I bought a pair of earrings from them. All of their jewelry is made with beach glass that they find along the shores of Grand Traverse Bay. I thought the pieces were beautiful and, of course, very unique.

August 10, 2012

oh my lovely Hibiscus

I have two now: Lord Baltimore (red with green leaves) and Lady Baltimore (pink flowers with purple leaves). They are the last plant to come up in the spring and they take their time growing but grow they do! Here we are mid-July and they are in their glory with plate-sized flowers that peek their faces in the kitchen window – a welcome hello as I begin my day.

I am also fascinated with their spidery buds.

August 8, 2012

scrap fabric greeting cards

I was inspired to experiment with some abstract lines using the unraveled thread from freshly-washed fabric and glue. Mixed results but it was a fun bit of creative play for me.

August 6, 2012

Write Michigan logos

I recently had the honor of developing some logo options for a short story content. Here are the three designs that were presented to the committee.

 campfire, storytelling, myths, messages, memories, words leaping off page

ripples, water, remembering, land and place as inspiration, clouds, dreams

bold type, waves and water, the printed page, books

My favorite is the middle one so I will end showing it to you in color. I developed several color versions of each of these. The committee ended up choosing the final logo out of the above three choices.

I would love to hear which one resonates with you and why. Please leave a comment!

August 3, 2012

the blog-inspired gift of currants

Someone who works with me and reads this blog brought in a sampling of her latest farmer's market purchase: currants! She said that they looked like "little pink pearls" and she knew I would appreciate them since I am always finding beautiful things in nature. What a gift to start my work day!

I was especially fascinated by the tiny seeds hidden in each translucent globe. I cannot say that I created any culinary greatness with them but my girls did enjoy an unusual snack.

August 1, 2012

hand painted signs at Cherry Point

I told you I was going to take more sign photos this summer! Here's a few I snapped at Cherry Point Farm and Market. It is in Oceana County, not far from my family's cottages and the shores of Lake Michigan and always a part of summer for me. I like to imagine these signs have been at the shop forever but even if they were recently painted I still admire the signs' handmade look!