Alexia Sinclair

May 31, 2010 | by admin in art, photography

Blurring the line between painting and photography, Alexia Sinclair is an award-winning Australian Fine Art photographer and digital artist. The dark, seductive, baroque and symbolic pictures in her portfolio are made up of different photographs blended to form one image. Backgrounds are often shot in a diverse range of locations to get the components of the images.

Sinclair’s most famous works to date include the Regal Twelve. The series portrays twelve European monarchs, such as Eleanor of Aquitaine, Isabella of Spain, and Marie Antoinette, who have ruled supreme and whose lives span over two millennia. With warrior woman-like and goddess-like qualities suggestive of the strength of the modern woman and contemporary notions of beauty, it is a diverse series that celebrates the famous, the infamous and the obscure. Exploring the complexities of each ruler, The Regal Twelve celebrates historical realities within the guise of contemporary fantasy, a kind of conversation between the past and present.

In the post, Inspiration in Illustration she discusses the list of painters and digital illustration artists that inspire her. She finds inspiration in traditional fine artists such as Anna Platten who works in oils and charcoal. And in digital illustration artists such as Ray Caesar and Linda Bergkvist who employ a stylus pen as their paintbrush and redefine the contemporary painted portrait and blur the lines of reality and fantasy.

“Inherit a city of brick and leave behind a city of marble.” — Pope Julius

The role and influence of artists patronage through history is a fascinating subject. In a recent Fine Art Requires Patrons post on Alexia’s blog, she discusses the need for generous patrons in today’s world of fine art to make possible the flowering of the artist’s vision. As artists engage regularly with their fanbase via blogs in a direct way and looking for creative ways to share techniques and distribute their art like Alexia does, the more successful they will be. I’m in total agreement that the patronage model is the way we keep our favorite artists fed, clothed and motivated to produce more for us.

Follow @alexiasinclair on Twitter.

Gyöngyvér Gaál

May 29, 2010 | by admin in jewelry

The captivating “ring with photo” from Hungaria’s Gaál Gyöngyvér was made in 2004 from silver, gold and Ulexite.

Ulexite has the ability to transmit images through natural fibers. These mineral specimens of hydrated sodium calcium borate are composed of thousands of fibrous fragments which transmit light. When the polished bottom surface of Ulexite is placed upon a printed page, the words can be read on the top surface, giving the appearance of a television screen.

Alannah Hill

May 27, 2010 | by admin in web design

Alannah Hill is one of Australia’s leading fashion designers with a unique and whimsical style. The website is a rich experience that provide a means to explore Alannah’s world of pink flamingos, chocolate bunnies, gnomes blowing bubbles, gerbils in hot air balloons and ferrets in saddles…

Brigid Ashwood

May 26, 2010 | by admin in art

Brigid Ashwood’s art could be described as Contemporary Figurative Mythic Surrealism. But the artist prefers to qualify her work this way: “I paint steampunk bugs, clockwork dolls, fairytales & vinyl toys. I seek to reinterpret mythic and fairytale worlds and heroines’ for a new audience.”

The world of Brigid Ashwood is one where clockwork creatures tread shadowed paths with ethereal spirits and insectile muses. Her works are soldered with brassy steampunk, and then immersed in ancient myth and fairy tale. Archetypes are at play here – challenging conventional ideas about their roles – their emotions and their motivations. Once broken dolls they have pieced themselves together of their own imagining – engineering their existence – they break through their glass coffins and emerge – for better or worse – wholly their own. Her works read like stories, their haunting presences seeming to reach out from the page, ready to speak their minds, and issue you into their mysteries.

A modern artist exploring classic themes through a Sci-Fi lens; Brigid’s influences and technique is well rooted in traditional mediums such as oil paint and silverpoint. She also works in the luminous tones of the digital palette; merging the labored craft of portraiture with the flexibility of modern mediums. Brigid’s work is collected internationally and has been featured in exhibits around the country as well in books and international magazines. Her originals are collected by notable authors, musicians, actors and CEOs. Brigid’s images have been licensed for a variety of products sold worldwide.

Steampunk Banner


A Fanciful Twist

May 25, 2010 | by admin in blog, handmade

A Fanciful Twist artist and blogger, Vanessa Valencia, weaves her tales of art and life with a dash of humor and a sprinkle of drama. I can’t recall exactly what year I found the Fanciful Twist blog, but I’ve read every post. I truly believe she must have more than 24 hours on her daily clock. Her sites are full of incredible candy-coated photography and her lighthearted copywriting is like something out of a vintage storybook. Honestly, even Country Living magazine could take a few pointers from Miss Vanessa on set styling, Photoshop color correction and the art of storytelling. Her genius is making the ordinary… well… extraordinary!

She shares little snippets of her life, believes in having fun and encourages her readers to take voyages in the ship of dreams along with her. She has a way of making everyone feel lovelier, more talented and better than they think. She seems to grasp every opportunity to make every day carefree, joyful, creative and fun. A lot of time and effort goes into creating the succession of fairytale scenarios and engaging with her fan base. This dedication has created loyal fans who feel like they are truly in attendance at her tea parties.

A Fanciful Twist’s Flickr Gallery
A Fanciful Twist Etsy Shop
@afancifultwist on Twitter.

Furze Chan

May 24, 2010 | by admin in illustration

Take a tour through a magical kingdom, where fantasy and reality meet. Furze Chan has created an imaginative cast of animal paper puppet characters that can be used to guide you through various adventures, narratives and stories. The delicate ink drawings of wallabies, sheep, foxes, baboons and bears all come to life when you operate their moveable card stock joints and a sturdy stick allows you to hold each one upright.

Furze Chan is an artist based in Hong Kong with a love for ink drawing and printmaking. In 2009, she started her own small paper products brand “with her Animal Poetry” in order to share her love for animals and nature. Check out the furzechan Etsy shop.

Robin and the Sage

May 23, 2010 | by admin in jewelry

Delila Jemaiel lives in the middle of wild nature in Finland and creates quite earthy jewelry inspired by woodland, faeries and the magical realm. She works in a little studio where all kinds of antique curiosities and nature treasures encircle her; wildflowers, nature themed assemblages, bundles of fabrics and beads, antique findings, nature books and her own air clay pieces. Her daily woodland and nature walks whisper stories which she turns into jewelry. She loves to use materials which echo nature and what she would want to wear when wandering through the wild woods.

Check out the Robin and the Sage Etsy shop.

Creative Blok

May 21, 2010 | by admin in jewelry

Where else can you find a stunning diamond necklace for just $25? Creative Blok was founded by graphic designer Irina Blok, who finds inspiration in what’s happening in the world now. Creative Blok’s mission is to design amusing products that challenge the perception of objective reality. The designs are created by juxtaposing two seemingly incompatible concepts in an aesthetically pleasing way.

Follow @irinablok on Twitter.

Liza Corbett

May 19, 2010 | by admin in illustration

Whenever I look at Liza Corbett’s work, I feel like I’m looking through a locked glass cabinet full of lovely, out-of-print children’s books by Arthur Rackham. Which is fitting because she is a part of the Cabinet of Curiosities Etsy team.

Liza’s visualizations of angular ladies, bizarre animals and hybrids—so beautiful, so mysterious, so strange. The darkly rendered, dense cross-hatched drawings are somewhat distorted—out of proportion not by accident, but by design. Instead of hunting for a definitive identity of her enigmatic subjects, I get the feeling that Liza is inviting her audience to dwell on the eccentricity, curiosity, and melancholy of her work.

Currently working as an illustrator, artist and designer, her published illustration work includes magazines, literary journals, book jackets and children’s books.

If you love these wonderful, whimsical and odd works, take a trip on over to the Liza Corbet Etsy shop, blog and Flickr gallery.

Sqrl & Bee Studio

May 18, 2010 | by admin in sculpture

Melissa Frueh of Sqrl & Bee Studio is a fiber artist. She and her husband work from their home studio making art using only natural and sustainable methods. Doing things in a way that supports economic and biologic diversity on our planet is more than just an “angle” for them — it is a way of life.

Before discovering wool, she spent many years sculpting forms in clay. The same methods that give us wool blankets, coats and hats have been adapted by artists so that wool has become a sculptable medium. The “Felties” came about from her explorations with wool and are completely hand-tooled from start to finish. Their bright colors, simple forms, and adorable faces simply popped out of the wool and felting needles right in her hands. They are made from sustainably farmed wool and colored with non-toxic dyes — so they are friendly to both kids and the environment.

The simple, yet colorful Felted Wool Mobiles are bright and cheery and would look great in a nursery especially when you don’t know if it’s a boy or girl. The balls made of needle felted wool that meets CPSIA standards and are hung from steel wire.

The custom Felted Garden Gnomes live in little mushroom houses deep in the Feltie Forest. These pint-sized Felties are always ready for an adventure and to inspire the imagination of children (or adults) who play with them.

Where to find FELTIES ::
To go behind the scenes ::

Marmee Craft

May 17, 2010 | by admin in art

Marjorie Liucci has a flair for portraying the sweet and innocent side of life at Marmee Craft. I would love to step inside her enchanting world of dapper little creatures with proper names. She presents us with all sorts of curious whimsy dreamt up during her long forest wanderings.

As with the Pre-Raphaelite painters, her blushing cheek beauties have a particular feminine look, with cascades of rippling hair, a long neck and soulful eyes. Her artworks are inspired from old folk ballads, 19th century poetry, literature and folk art, antique fashions and textiles and whimsical little sayings and stories she makes up while drawing in the sketchbook. She works in thin layers and washes of watercolor and acrylic. She also digitally collages her sketches in Photoshop.

Kindly stop by My Cozy Little Whimsy Nook.

Woodland Belle

May 15, 2010 | by admin in jewelry

Mai McKemy at Woodland Belle and the Woodland Belle Etsy shop creates rustic woodland-themed jewelry and hair accessories with intricate details that blend sophistication with playfulness.

The Butterfly Collection Necklace is brimming with detailed 3D butterfly photographs of real specimens housed in a handmade antique copper frame and covered by glass.

The Tiny Moss and Mushroom Terrarium Ring has a tiny fern that sits on a bed of moss and lichen, accompanied by two red-spotted toadstool mushrooms. The entire delightful scene is nestled in a custom-created, sterling silver bezel cup ring. The sturdy Pyrex glass dome has been hand-blown and custom created.

What’s not to lichen about taking Mother Nature with you?


May 13, 2010 | by admin in art

Strangeling rules the Empire on which the sun never sets! The art of Jasmine Becket-Griffith is everywhere. Her world-renowned fantasy art paintings have appeared in books, television shows, movies, magazines, advertisements, tattoo parlours, theme parks, lines of collectibles through the Bradford Exchange and Hamilton Collection and hundreds of different licensed merchandise products at thousands of retail stores.

Most widely known for gothic, fantasy and fairy artwork, Jasmine’s acrylic paintings have elements of classical literature, the occult, dragons, faeries, mermaids, vampires, Rococo, nature, steampunk, Victoriana, Tudor portraits, nymphs, science and fantasy. She believes that with each piece of art she gets out of her system, onto paper, and into your home, that she has done her part to make this world a more magical planet.

For many years, Jasmine has kept up as a pioneer by consistently coming up with new ways to market herself through her website, social networks and partnerships. Lots of time and effort goes into communicating her approachable brand image to her fan base, but the end result is truly amazing. This dedication has created a strong bond between the Jasmine and her audience and her fans feel like they are along for the fairytale journey. Because she has broken down the walls, she has been successful at connecting with fans and giving them a reason to buy.

To name a few, you can find Strangling on Etsy, Ebay, Zazzle and Bradford Exchange Collectibles.

Follow @jasminetoad on Twitter.


May 12, 2010 | by admin in toys

Manipulating fiber, illustration and surface elements have always fascinated me. Self-taught fiber artist, Samantha Cotterill of mummysam, seems to find commonalities in her concepts rather than in the materials with each unique piece. She creates pieces that appear to be more hand drawn and each one takes on its own identity. The mixed media fiber artworks at mummysam Etsy shop are made with freehand embroidery techniques, 100% wool felt and pure lambswool stuffing.

Along with the imaginative soft sculptures, she also illustrates for prints and wall hangings. Look for her upcoming book with C&T Publishing as well as a line of fabric designed exclusively for Robert Kaufman.

Follow @mummysamart on Twitter. Check out the mummysam Flickr gallery for even more fiber goodness.

Madame Talbot

May 11, 2010 | by admin in illustration

I’ve long been fascinated by the period of Victorian medical chicanery and their methods of publicity. Their traveling circuses of sorts offered vaudeville style entertainment to pitch nostrums or quack medicines that promised to cure ailments.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is my privilege to bring to you the wonder not only of our ages, but of ages past, Madame Talbot’s Victorian Lowbrow™ and Gothic Lowbrow™ featuring the hand-illustrated pen-and-ink artwork of Ashleigh Talbot. The curio cabinet is brimming with vintage-looking creations–circus freak shows, folklore creatures of the night, southern Gothic, traveling medicine shows and archaic Victorian funeral practices.

Madame Talbot’s many talents include her hand-drawn offset printed dark art posters, exquisite one-of-a-kind framed curio exhibits, old school sideshow items, limited edition hand-sewn and hand-painted mourning dolls, tombstone art, t-shirts, her own original pen-and-ink illustrations for sale, her handmade limited edition books as well as a strange collection of macabre collectibles added to her website site monthly, and much, much more.

A reclusive artist who resides within the many walls of her 135-year-old haunted house in a small Victorian town in the gloomy dark and wet paradise on the very edge of the Oregon Coast, is self-taught in nearly everything she does. She also is well-versed in the art of penmanship and calligraphy, and is a taphophile by nature and historian by design. Her posters are one-of-a-kind, all images are hand-drawn using only pen-and-ink on illustration board and then printed the “Old School” way, with the use of an offset printing press on high quality paper stock.

Visit the blog and VictorianLowbrow Etsy shop for updates on her newest Victorian and Gothic Lowbrow posters, her Mourning and Apothecary dolls, her Framed Curio Exhibits and anything else she happens to be working on. Follow @MadameTalbot on Twitter.


May 10, 2010 | by admin in sculpture

I’ve tried lots of different mediums, techniques and styles in my career as an artist. But, I admire the artists who have the skill and patience to make their imaginations come to life in clay.

Afsaneh Tajvidi of the joojooland is one of those talented artists who makes sculpting look easy. Afi was born and raised in Tehran, Iran and immigrated to Canada in 2006. She had been working as a web designer/programmer when she started having back pain and sitting in front of a computer for many hours was very difficult. She decided to quit her day job and work at home as an artist who paints, illustrates, sculpts and makes jewelry.

My favorites are the tiny tattooed snails with real shells are made of clay and the bodies are painted with acrylics. While the characters are quite simple, she has a knack for making them exquisitely detailed. Just look at the blue and white snails that mimic the porcelains of China. And the snails that match the colors of the seasons.

You can learn more about shop updates at her inspirational blog, Flickr galleries and @joojooland Twitter account.

Amanda Valdes

May 10, 2010 | by admin in art

Born in Miami and raised in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, Amanda Valdes has broken new ground in the West Palm Beach Art Scene with a vision that appeals to the masses. Picking up a paintbrush at the age of two, she began painting with all of the whimsy and fantasy that she still does today.

At the age of 19, Amanda found herself at a crossroads while studying graphic design at the Art Institute and working as a makeup artist. When an injury prevented her from working and continuing her studies, she began to paint again. It wasn’t long before her passion took over and she quickly traded in a blush brush for an acrylic brush and the rest, as they say, is history.

It’s hard to mistake the artist when encountering one of her many provocative characters. Her work mostly focuses on female identity and the way that she expresses herself through her creations. Only one male character has been painted to date, which was inspired by a real life romance between her mother and an old flame. Her paintings are primarily acrylic on canvas, but she has been known to incorporate watercolor, spray paint, and other mediums as well. She is influenced by society’s trends, music, fairytales, medieval centuries, Greek mythology, and the Elizabethan era. Her inspiration can also be found in music and lyrics by various artists when naming her paintings.

Amanda Valdes has a strong presence in the South Florida art scene and is looking forward to expanding in other markets across the World. She was recently commissioned to paint an original large-scale mural inside of one of West Palm Beach’s oldest nightlife establishments, Respectable Street Café, in celebration of their 21st Anniversary. In addition to her mural work, she has been honored as the first female-featured artist at Urban Outfitters in Palm Beach Gardens. More displays of her artwork can be found at Howley’s Restaurant and Monarchy Nightclub in West Palm Beach, LF Stores in Palm Beach Gardens, Boca Raton, Ft. Lauderdale, and DaDa Restaurant in Delray Beach, Bear and Bird Boutique & Gallery in Lauderhill, and The Vagabond in Miami. She is also the youngest, and most recent addition to the Art Rx [wpb] group.

Follow @AmandaValdes on Twitter.

Chocolate Creative

May 9, 2010 | by admin in handmade

Margarita Lorenzo is the designer behind Chocolate Creative, a multidisciplinary studio based in South London. After many years working mainly in graphics, her passion for textiles drove her to learn and discover new ways to apply her graphic knowledge to textiles.

Her works are sustainable, handmade interior textiles, combining traditional skills such as cross stitch, and embroidery with contemporary design tools and silk screen printing. The designs are inspired by traditional craft, antiques, vintage textiles and images. Taking inspiration from antiques and vintage designs makes for a unique twist on contemporary textiles.

When she is not working on her textiles, you can find her blogging away at:, a place where she archives everything she finds inspiring. For more images, check out her out on Flickr. Follow @choco_creative on Twitter.

A Little Stranger

May 6, 2010 | by admin in toys

Artist, toy designer, and entrepreneur –– Holly Stanway is a triple threat. She runs A Little Stranger, a London, UK based webshop focused on quality, imagination and creativeness for herself and independent artists. As a freelance plush designer and model maker, it all started off as a way for Holly Stanway, to support herself while she was studying.

I’m a big fan of her cute and creepy girls in furry suits. They are one-off plush art toys of mixed medias such as resins, polymer clays and plush fabrics like fleece and fake furs. The faces are an original sculpt which is then handcast in resin, painted and sealed with 3 layers of matte lacquer and 5 layers of gloss on the eyes and lips.

She also transforms solid wood french knitting bobbins for the Bobbins Series collection. Each one is hand-painted in acrylic and then sealed with layers of protective gloss for a long lasting finish and shine.

Check out the A Little Stranger Shop and Blog. Follow @alittlestranger on Twitter.

Ash Lethal

May 5, 2010 | by admin in art

Ashleigh Fedo, also known as Ash Lethal, is an independent artist with an established a private design studio based in Atlanta. Primarily a self-taught artist, she has been exposing her art through local publications, gallery shows, murals, and custom designing for projects such as merchandise design and album art.

Her distinctive style, subject and color palette is reflective of positive images, music, love, passion, and awareness. I love the expressive line quality that is somewhat imprecise and redrawn with hesitancy over and over again in search for the essence of her subject. This dynamic kind of drawing combined with a sense of melancholy makes one feel as though she is spontaneously thinking aloud to the audience.

For more insights, there is a wonderful write-up at The Artery Magazine.

Check out the AshLethal Etsy shop for more ink drawings, lowbrow, and macabre art.

Muddy Cloud

May 4, 2010 | by admin in toys

The Muddy Cloud story begins like this…

When their daughter was first born, they wanted to make stuffed toys that went beyond the standard teddy bears and puppy dogs. Together they conceptualized non-traditional, colorful and cute dolls. They also wanted to appeal to the adults as well as children, creating somewhat abstract characters that would be interesting and unique.

The Muddy Cloud philosophy is about encouraging children to cultivate their imagination, spark creativity and capture the magic that comes from a treasured childhood companion – a favorite stuffed doll.

So, how did they come up with the name Muddy Cloud? It derived from two of their favorite childhood activities. Lying on their backs watching the clouds roll by; everyone always sees something different. And making mud pies… they’re the yummiest pies ever – a little messy and unconventional but always made with love.

Check out the Muddy Cloud blog and Flickr photo gallery.
Follow @muddycloud on Twitter.

Lydia Meiying

May 3, 2010 | by admin in illustration

Lydia Meiying extremely passionate about print and pattern. She is an Illustrator and Surface Pattern Designer working and living in Manchester, UK. She graduated from Leeds College of Art with an Honors degree in Printed Textiles and Surface Pattern Design. Since graduating she has worked as a freelance designer, designing patterns for wallpaper, fabric, stationary and any other surface she can find. Her work is a mix of CAD based and hand drawn illustration and she likes to infuse as much color as possible into her work. Her ideal day is spent drawing birds and flowers whilst enjoying a pot of green tea.

Check out the meiying Etsy store and follow @lydiameiying on Twitter.


May 3, 2010 | by admin in handmade

Antiquity, victorian photographs, and industrial cast-off materials–combine all of these elements together and you’ve yourself got a Ghosthaus Magic Lantern. Using only electrical supplies and turn-of-last-century photographs encased in antique 35mm glass slides, Victor Vague of has created a handmade candle holder that people across the board, from settled-in suburbanites to 30-something artsy hipsters, can appreciate.

Candle Holders are appropriate to the middle ages and reflect living in the past, so I chose the “shining armor” lantern as my favorite. Can you get any more steampunk than a museum full of suits of armor?

Featured on Noupe

May 2, 2010 | by admin in press

Website Bakery was included in the article about Multi-Layered Design: Guidelines and Examples. The post features thirty great examples of sites that are visually complex without being cluttered and messy.

Noupe passionately delivers stylish and dynamic news for designers and web-developers on all subjects of design, ranging from; CSS, Ajax, Javascript, web design, graphics, typography, advertising & much more. Founded in 2007, the site is now part of the Smashing Network of design magazine sites.

Kawaii Kids

May 1, 2010 | by admin in product

Kawaii Kids website is the ultimate in celebrating a cute brand experience. Even though there is a clear focus on branding and imagery, look closely, it is also an online shop for quirky and colorful products. Kawaii Kids stocks a large range of clothing, shoes and accessories for your little ones: pettiskirts, quirky bum print pants, animal rompers, bibs, pants, tops and dresses. I love the new line of bento boxes for creating lunches with a playful twist.

As a stay at home mum of two, it was difficult for the owner of Kawaii Kids to find children’s clothing that she liked. Combined with living in a small country town with only one clothing shop, she began shopping online. Still, she struggled to find items that were unique, colorful and different. She wanted to be able to buy everything in the one store, hence, Kawaii Kids. Some of the brands offered are Nissen, Carter’s, NEXT, Mothercare, Polo Ralph Lauren, OshKosh, Bambini, Pumpkin Patch, Combimini and many more.

Follow @Kawaii_Kids on Twitter. And check out the Kawaii Kids Online blog for upcoming products.

Website Bakery is an exhibition and inspiration showcase gallery that aggregates art, design, web design, illustration, handmade, products, etc. Curated by Kimberly Coles, Creative Director, Illustrator and Web Designer.

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