Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Interview with dreamy illustrator Susanne Loose

Today's interview is with a dreamy, talented aspiring illustrator called Susanne. so who is she? 

keep reading.. 

First, introduce yourself... 
My name is Susanne Loose,  I'm an architect and hobby illustrator based in Hamburg/Germany.

Who inspires you in term of arts in general and illustration?
I'm inspired by nature in general, landscapes and animals, but also by design objects, interesting persons and characters from movies or real life, sometimes even a mood. But I don't seek for inspiration willingly. Sometimes my mind is empty and I don't have ideas. In these times I can't draw at all.

What is your favorite style of illustration? 
I like rough sketches or pencil drawings. The state of an idea, not a perfect finished picture. This often appears in my job when you have to transport an idea in a quick sketch to the client. On the other hand very detailed illustrations can catch me and amaze me too.
During my youth I was influenced  by Japanese comics (manga) and anime. I still prefer some kind of comic/cartoony style. Lately I'm also interested in the art of tattooing and tattoo compatible illustrations because they can fit a part of your body perfectly.

What style of illustration do you find challenging ? 
Portraits and realistic paintings are really challenging for me because I'm not patient nor skilled enough. It's hard not to be intimidated by the skills of others and trust  my own talents...

Name other illustrators you admire... 

Who are your biggest supporters? 

My parents and my fiancé.

What do you enjoy doing other that illustration?

To exercise has always been important to me and since I'm working at the office I need to move at the end of the day! Running, swimming or climbing (in a climbing hall) is my (almost) daily compensation to sitting in front of a computer all day. I love the mountains and whenever possible I try to go rock climbing or hiking into the mountains. I enjoy the silence and solitude out there. Being so small towards the power of nature helps me to find my limits and new ideas.

What are your favorite films/ tv shows/ books and musicians that keep you inspired?

Last week I really enjoyed binge watching "Stranger Things" or the film "Ex Machina". But there are all time favorites like Moonrise Kingdom, The Lion King, The Prestige, Lost in Translation, Amelie, Up, Moon...
I'm also ambitious watching series like Game of Thrones, Homeland, House of Cards, True Detective...
I like fantasy and surrealistic books for example all the books by Haruki Murakami or "His Dark Materials" by Philip Pullman. When I was younger, I enjoyed reading "The edge chronicles" by Paul Stewart and amazing illustrations by Chris Riddell. 

The list of musicians would be too long, quite a mixed bag. To name a few: Mia. (german pop band), Depeche ModeFlorence and the machine, Dapayk & Padberg, The Chemical BrothersSiaRadioheadJose GonzalezWild Beasts, The Cure....

What scares you the most?
Not doing what you love because you're afraid to fail.

Have you ever thought about publishing a book of your work or teaching your methods and techniques? 
I'm not a professional illustrator and so I would never dare to teach someone else something I never learned. Art is an enjoyable thing to me, because it's not my job and I'm free to draw when ever I want, not when I have to. All the better when people actually like some of my drawings or paintings. I'm super shy and still very flattered about compliments.

Whats your favorite thing to draw? 
It always depend on my mood, but cats, animals in general, mountains and strong female characters are some of my favorites. I'm enjoying anatomical studies of animals and figure drawing too.

Can you say that you have your own style? and what do you call it? 

That's a difficult question. To me there is an automatic development in style over time and it's always influenced by the things you like. It's a changing thing and I could never say: "This is my own style now." 

What's the best advice you can give to all the art lovers out there? 

Be brave and do what you love, don't be scared of failure. 

With the modern day technology and gadgets, what's your favorite drawing related gadget? whats your favorite app or program and have you said good bye to pen and paper? 

I never really tried to draw digitally, but it's always exciting to use new materials and techniques and experience what you can do with it (or not). Due to my job I'm kinda skilled with 3D modelling buildings and editing pictures with Photoshop into a sceneric visualization. Maybe it's old fashioned but in my free time I prefer to draw and paint with watercolors, acrylic paint or just a pencil. I like to blend colors and spread it on canvas, the feeling of a pen or a brush in your hand. For me it's helpful to relax, sometimes even meditative and I can forget everything around me. Other techniques like etching, aqua tinta or vernis mou are also interesting to me. I had the privilege to try this during my studies at the university.

What's your favorite illustration by you? 

At the moment it's the polar bear in watercolor, because there is a little story behind it: It was the first watercolor painting I did after a long time. As a teenager I thought I'm not good at watercolor and kept to my pens and acrylic color. But since this little painting I enjoy working with watercolor although I'm not a "pro" at it. I'm still very intimidated by the skills of other but I try not to put pressure on myself because I now know it would keep me from exploring all kinds of materials and drawing techniques. 

What's your favorite illustration by someone else ? 

Mhh... There are so many adorable illustrations out there, I could never decide for just one. It's also a very changeable thing depending on my mood, like it is with music or movies... I would like refer to the artists I named before :)

Where can we buy your art (if possible)  ? 

I'll open a small shop on my website www.susanneloose.de soon. There you can find small original watercolor paintings and drawings or contact me for commission work. See my work on instagram via www.instagram.com/susu.illustration.

And that's it! 
If you enjoyed this interview please share it and let me know in the comments below or email me at reemwrites@gmail.com 
don't hesitate to tweet me at @reemsjournal    or follow my instagram at @reemwrites

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Interview with talented Illustrator Danielle Pioli

Hello everyone, today I'm interviewing my first illustrator, Danielle Pioli caught my eye with her beautiful, adorable illustrations so, who is she? 

lets take a closer look 

First, introduce yourself... 
My name is Danielle Pioli, I'm a character designer and illustrator based in Brazil. 
Who inspires you in term of arts in general and illustration?
I can say that animation has been my #1 inspiration for a long time now, but lately I've been finding inspiration in a variety of medias, such as movies in general, classical paintings, music, comics... And also in things that are not about art. Life itself is very inspiring, and I'm a person who questions and pays attention to stuff, so inspiration comes eventually.

What is your favorite style of illustration? 
That's a tough question! I love too many different styles and my favorites keep changing from time to time. I'd say that what really sticks is a cartoony style of characters, environments and props. I love cartoony stuff.

What style of illustration do you find challenging ? 
When it tend to be more realistic is a lot more challenging for me. It requires a lot of practice to do things realistic and visually correct, such as anatomy and lighting for instance.

Name other illustrators you admire... 
There's a whole bunch! It's hard to say, there are old artists like the Disney's 9 old men, very known artists like Loish, Nicolas Marlet and Pascal Campion, fellow artists like Justin Rodrigues, Zac Retz, Amanda McFarlane. The brazilian artist are also extremely talented! Julio Cesar, Limetown Studios, Gabrielle Schauerhuber, Sabrina Eras. I can never think of them when I need. But just go through my Pinterest and you will find all of them around there!

Who are your biggest supporters? 
I can say I have receive a lot of support through my journey. My boyfriend and my family have always supported me and I appreciate that so much!
My audience / tribe also are sweethearts and they often make my day with their support!

What do you enjoy doing other than illustration?
Like I said, I'm a person who questions. I do a lot of research in the subjects that interest me, such as new age spirituality, witchcraft, psychology, wellness and a bunch of other stuff.
I also enjoy being a normal person and binge watching Netflix. 

What are your favorite films/TV shows/ books and musicians that keep you inspired?
I don't know of things that keep me inspired. Inspiration comes to me when I manage to keep myself in a good state of mind. Then it seems like the world opens up to me and I see inspiration in whatever comes.
Animation movies, "the Art of" books, though they can be very inspiring, they can be overwhelming as well. I love them a lot, but sometimes it's too much and get me from inspired to self conscious about my art. Anyway, I love seeing other artist's sketchbooks and all "the Art of" (like I said before).
I get inspired a lot by stories. When I watch something that tells a good story in a very nice way, it turns a switch on inside me and I feel like producing something.
Music is also a good way to get inspired since it's usually relaxing or releasing. But when you get to understand the story behind a certain band, a certain album or a certain song, that's what takes you to the next level, you know?
To name a few things I like and keep me inspired:
Music: Patti Smith, The Beatles, David Bowie, Bob Dylan, Grateful Dead.
Tv shows: Game of Thrones, Adventure Time (I watch a whole lot other series, but these ones are inspiring for me in their own way).
Films: I like horror movies and one that opened up a door to me was The Witch. But I love The Lion King and the teachings in Pocahontas are amazing. Series and movies are a hard topic to talk about, I watch and love too many!!

What scares you the most? 
Living a meaningless life. Not doing what I love, not saying what I have to say, not exploring all I have to explore. That shit is scary!

You share a lot of teaching materials, have you ever thought about publishing a book? 
Yes, I have thought about that! I don't feel like I can teach artists anything at all, but I like sharing what I know and how I see things.
The tips I share are stuff that helped me and I hope will help others as well.
Let's see about the book :)

Whats your favorite thing to draw? 
Female characters. I just love the feminine world and all the depths of a woman.

Can you say that you have your own style? and what do you call it? 
I think a style is something you do your way based on all your references. I can't say I have my own style, or that I even want to have. I do different styles from time to time and it's good to be able to vary from one style to another. But I believe that with time we put a bit of ourselves in any style we draw. And I think that is the important thing.

What's the best advice you can give to all the art lovers out there? 
The things you love are the things you should be talking, drawing, writing about. Find what you love to do, to study about, to watch, listen, read about and make your own world with those elements of interest.
Everyone will tell you to practice and that IS important, but also know what you are practicing for.

With the modern day technology and gadgets, what's your favorite drawing related gadget? whats your favorite app or program and have you said good bye to pen and paper? 
I still use pencil and paper a lot. And I also use new technology gadgets like my Wacom Cintiq and Photoshop.
I think it's nice to balance and get to know it all. There are a lot of art materials out there that I haven't touched yet that could be a nice add-on to my art in any mean.

What's your favorite illustration by you? 
Good question. Hard to say but I think it might be my Viking - Shieldmaiden piece.

What's your favorite illustration by someone else ? 
Oh I can't choose one! Don't make me do it! haha
Recently I've been studying Loish work (revisiting it, again and again), and I simply love the "Blossom" one.

Where can we buy your art ? 
This is my international Etsy shop: http://etsy.com/shop/daniellepioliart
And for the brazilian people, this is my brazilian shop: http://daniellepioli.iluria.com

You can find Danielle in her links below:

My website, you can find averything there: http://daniellepioli.com
Instagram: @daniellepioliart - http://www.instagram.com/daniellepioliart
Facebook: Danielle Pioli ART - http://facebook.com/daniellepioli
Periscope: danepioli
Snapchat: danielle.pioli

Monday, 9 May 2016

Start Where You Are a Journal of Self Exploration By Meera Lee Patel

Welcome back to my blog...
Today I'm bringing you a happy, sweet and bubbly fluke. a little while ago I went to the bookstore with an aim of finding something that would inspire me and make me want to work on myself and my blog more often. I picked up a number of books that are written by my favorite motivators. As I was browsing books I heard the announcement that the store was about to close, and just as I was leaving my eyes met this beautiful little book with a beautiful watercolor design on it and I had no idea what it was but I had a good feeling about it. On my ride home I opened the book and was in love with it, every page, every idea just made me turn one page after the other and today I will sum it up to you!

The mind behind this beautiful piece is a beautiful illustrator named Meera Lee Patel whose a self-taught artist raised by the New Jersey shore, where she swam the bright waters and climbed cherry blossom trees until she grew old enough to draw them. Her illustrations are inspired by the magical mysteries of nature, the quiet stories that lace through everyday life, and the bold colors of her native India. 
Her first book, DAILY ZEN, was published by Ulysses Press in October 2014. 
Her second book, START WHERE YOU ARE, was published in Fall 2015 by Perigee (Penguin USA).

Now let's beak down this book!
So, this book is written and illustrated in watercolor. on each page there's a beautiful illustration with a quote and on the opposite side of the page there's something for you to do. 

while going through these little tasks you'll see that you're starting to think about things a little differently and possibly you come to realize the small things a little more.

flipping through this journal is an unstoppable motion I pretty much finished it in one day and wanted more!
While researching Meera I found this video of her paining as a collaboration between her and Free people. it's beautiful to watch.   

These beautiful illustrations and more can be found on Meera's Etsy 

Check out Meera's Website

Follow Meera on Twitter - Instagram  - Facebook 
 Buy her book from Amazon - Indiebound - Powell's - Urban outfitters -

My final thoughts about this book is it's a beautiful, thoughtful and very deep personal book. although it can give the illusion that the targeted audience are young adults, I enjoyed it a lot and it really put a smile on my face and was a great inspiration! I give this five stars and will buy this as a gift to a loved one. 

for more information you can email me at reemwrites@gmail.com 
don't hesitate to tweet me at @reemsjournal    

Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Something Blue: things to train your brain that are blue :)

Today I wanted to talk about a number of things that have two things in common. the first is that they train your brain and make you feel great and the second is that they happen to be blue!

First on my list is my new addiction the Elevate App!

Elevate App as described in their website is a new type of cognitive training tool designed to build communication and analytical skills. Members are provided with a personalized game-based training program that adjusts over time based on performance.
Elevate has been selected by Apple as the App of the Year for 2014. Since launching in May 2014, Elevate has been downloaded more than 10 million times on the App Store and Google Play.
for me this app is so much more!
First of all, the app is very elegant. the graphics are so crisp, clean and simple. the layout is pretty easy to figure out on your own. 
After you download the app, you are required to create an account which only takes few moments. after that you are free to use this app! 
Everyday you take three different tests and they vary between math, writing, memory and focus and more! 

After each test your result are kept to determine your progress over the weeks. you can schedule your sessions according to your plans and choose to be notified when the sessions are available.
when you finish your sessions, you can still practice the same categories that same day. however the next day is usually a different one! 
with time you will find it easy to go through each session with minimal mistakes. this app not only made me develop skills I needed, but also made me more confidant and happy with myself.


Next app is my all time favorite and will forever be << maybe that's a bit much but I'm like that

it's Monument Valley

it's described as an illusory  adventure of impossible architecture and forgiveness . its a puzzle game developed by USTWO .
You lead princess Ida ( the main character) through mazes of optical illusions that are beautifully 
 inspired by Japanese prints, minimalist sculpture, and indie games Windosill,Fez, and Sword & Sworcery, 
and was compared by critics to M. C. Escher drawings and Echochrome.

 The art was designed such that each frame would be worthy of  public display. After a closed beta test, it was released for iOS on April 3, 2014, and was later ported to Android and Windows Phone.

The game received generally favorable reviews. Critics praised its art and sound design, but noted its lack of difficulty and short length. It won a 2014 Apple Design Award, was named Apple's best iPad game of 2014, and sold over two million copies by January 2015.

why is it good for your brain? 
this is not a game. it's an experience. the graphics, the music and the simplicity made people all over the world fall in love with this beautiful piece of art! so many people loved the story line of this game that they decided to create fan art about it. the official Monument Vally Tumblr account shares fan art from all over the world.

                                                                   an example of fan art by painted castel 


My list can not be completed without a book! 

and my little Blue book is called : This book will make you mindful by Dr Jessamy Hibberd and Jo Usmar . 

what this book is really about is how to be mindful. how to live in the moment and really enjoy it. how to have better control of your emotions and feelings. 
I recommend this to everyone who'd like to have a better life emotionally and truly live in the moment.
full book review coming up soon! 

Thank you so much for reading this. I really hope you enjoyed it! 

please don't forget to follow my
 instagram @reemwrites 
and my Twitter @reemsjournal 
leave me a comment or email me at reemwrites@gmail.com

Thursday, 3 March 2016

How to create a photo header for your blog

Hello everyone!

Today I decided to spice up my blog and give it a little face lift and share it with you!

so let's get started!

First things first :

if you're not a graphic designer and don't want to pay someone to create a header for you then you can find lots of free alternatives online.
there are templates, photos, designs, illustrations and fonts that are available for your use for free!
all you have to do is link to the person who created them and you're pretty much done!

for my header I used www.freepik.com . after surfing the website for a little while I decided that I wanted to use this Vector 

so basically you have to have Adobe Illustrator which you can download from here .

- Start by opening a new file with these dimensions I chose 1100xp X 300px and you'll get something like this

- Next step is go to File > Open> (choose your Vector). it will load up in another tap.
-Now choose the part of the vector that you like, for me it was the flower. so, I selected it by clicking on it twice. it will look like this so don't be scared (I was) 

-While it's still selected go to Edit > Copy . then move to your header page, create a new layer and go to Edit > Paste.

- From here you can pretty much do whatever you want by placing each shape in a different layer. the reason we so this is to have full control over which shape goes where and staking them that way make them look realistic.

-After that you can add the text 

- Make sure you add a new layer for the text. press (I) for the eyedopper tool and click on any part of the photo that you like to color the txt.

- For final touches I used a watercolor splash from this Vector

- Load the Vector in illustrator. click on the rectangle at the middle and delete it. then click on the splash and it will look something like this.

- When it's selected you go to Edit > Copy then back to your Header and click Edit > Paste and then you drag it around anyway you like it.

- As a final touch I added a butterfly from this Vector 

And now to how I added the header to the blog:

you open your blog and you go to Layout > Header 

- You click on Add image then you select your header. 

if the header seems too big there's a simple way to fix it by going to Templates > Customize > Adjust widths.

And that's it! 

Don't forget to check www.freepik.com :) 

I really hope you found that useful! for more info don't hesitate to comment or email me at: 


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