Weave Your Self Portrait

If you took an art class in college, then you had to do the dreaded “Self Portrait.”

I had to do this several times. First in my Freshman drawing class, then I had to do it again in my screen-printing class and then again in my Photography class. And in that one, the self portrait had to contain 15 different photos! Ugh.

Staring at myself for hours on end while trying to create an amazing piece of artwork in an attempt to knock your professor’s socks off was not very enjoyable to me! However, I was honored when my photography professor, who had many books published, asked if he could film my final self portrait project.

Honestly, self-portraiture involves many issues that have nothing to do with how you look. Obviously it’s a good assignment in teaching students how they see themselves.  But at the same time, you are conflicted with how should you present yourself — should you accentuate your flaws or flaunt them? Should it be literal or make it abstract? What kind of message do you want to communicate in the image? Should it represent your dark side or your spiritual side or no side at all?

To summarize, it’s difficult to paint, draw, sketch or film yourself. Wait. I stand corrected, so let me rephrase that. In this day and age of social media, there are many people who have no problem visually expressing who they are with some posting hundreds of photos of themselves, giving viewers a very detailed “self portrait!” I am not one of them.

So while I was surfing the web last week, I came across one of the most interesting self-portraits I have seen. I’d say it’s pretty brilliant. Not only does she show her medium and you get the image of her, but the message she sends is very powerful and interpretations are endless. I see many different meanings in this. And why I think it’s brilliant is because while it is a self portrait, you don’t see it solely as that. It’s simply, a work of art. Perfect.

Artist: Kimvi Nguyen “Self Portrait with Willow” 2013
Collaboration with Staff and students at Winchester College

You want what in the shape of a stomach?

So most of you know I am a freelance designer and have been for many years now. Sure, it can be exciting at times and I get some fun projects to work on like creating a new label for a line of rum, designing a cookbook for an up and coming author or banging out a sweet presentation for Jillian Michaels.

And then, I get jobs like this, which are still interesting in their own way, I might add.

QR code stomach copy


What is it? Well, a very good client of mine needed some artwork for a client of his, with the instruction of creating a QR code that links to a video BUT it has to be in the shape of a stomach! Yup, a stomach.

Creating the entire shape was actually very easy. In Illustrator, after generating a QR code from my client’s web link, I did this:


So that’s one of the several things I did today in my little office at the back of McSoHo. So you see my job isn’t all glamorous! LOL.

If you are interested in seeing a medical video about a stomach procedure, simply scan the code with your phone — but only if you have a strong stomach (honestly, no pun intended)!


A Beautiful Fall Day.

When we moved to Tennessee, I knew I would miss the beautiful falls of New England. But I have to pleasantly admit, it’s been very pretty here during our first Fall down South!

And I guess this will be our last 60+ degree days for awhile, so I got out the camera to capture some inspiration shots to paint from over the next few months.

fall-red-leaf-2013I love the color red out in nature. And along the perimeter of our property, I found this bright red leaf amongst the dried weeds.

fall-ladybug-on-leaf-2013I captured this little critter climbing on one of the leaves when I went in for a closeup. However, it looks more like a summer picture than one taken in mid-November!

fall-plant-leaves-2013I definitely will be painting this pic (and the red leaf). But of course, since I am an abstract artist, it will look nothing like the photo. Will strictly be used for inspiration — the colors, textures, lines all work to create a nice contrast.