Saturday, December 20, 2008

Celebrity Mommy

I've got a new European client! They have allowed me to show you some sketches, since they rock so hard. We're developing some new Momma sketches for the red carpet. Here's a sneak peek.

I'm a big fan of the little stuffed elephant one of the toddlers has by the foot. It's one of my little development moves. Originally I drew a little bear, but before showing them off I realized that a celeb's kid would never schlep along with something as mundane and ordinary as a teddy bear. An elephant on the other hand, totally acceptable. It's so important to develop and make consise decisions before you show sketches to your audience. If you don't push yourself there's a very strong chance that your client will like things before you've really had a chance to explore the possibilities. That's how a project's potential gets cut short.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Website Relaunch!!

I yell "yippeee!!!" fairly often - but seriously, this deserves it. If you haven't been to www.AmberAlvarez.com in awhile what are you waiting for?! It's officially relaunched. I'm done fussing with it. FOREVER.
OK, I'll probably play with it a little tomorrow. Then that's it!! Grr.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Lee Lee's Valise - Holiday Hottness

It's been a while since I've been able to post about anything in my top-secret file. Nicely for us, Lee Lee's Valise, just released their Holiday Extravaganza Illustration. Now you're more than welcome to ooh and ahh."

Friday, December 12, 2008

Then All of the Sudden...

The Merry Revelers got a bit too merry.
Let the Holiday Party Season Begin!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Don't Worry, Be Happy!

Doot doot doot doo do do do doo dah dahhh. Doo da doo da doo da dooo. Doo da doo da do.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Scribble Drawings

I've mentioned my scribble drawings in the past, but I've never shown you them. They're my own personal version of the Rorschach inkblot test. While they're not scientifically backed up by any research or scientific finding, I swear by them, as do many of my friends and several random middle school kids who ride the F train with me in the mornings. Whenever I'm having trouble jump-starting my imagination I'll do a scribble drawing.

I prefer someone else do the scribble, as it keeps me honest. I want the scribbles to be wild and not at all driven or coerced. The best way to do that is to have someone else create one. I have friends in Spain and Australia who will actually email me scribbles from time to time. They love seeing the end result. Growing up I did them as parlor tricks for company. In college I sold them for a dollar a piece in Union Square.

I squint at a scribble and twist it around a bit, and then go in for the kill. After a few of them are sitting side by side, I'm back in creation mode. They get me ready to draw like mad again. They work like a charm and never fail.

Here are a few of my faves done in a scribble drawing binge with friends at Two Boots last Monday.
The red line is the scribble, the black the scribble drawing:






This one below was a collaboration with Garrett Rose. When everything was said and done, a few people could actually tell that it was a whistling beatnik. One of the great testaments to the bliss of scribble drawing is that most people watching get excited and eager to try their hand at it. Garrett jumped in on this one and started getting his sea legs.

This fun little frog guy was done by Rachel Micheal. I provided the scribble ;)


I highly recommend a scribble drawing a day. I kind of binge scribble draw these days. They will make you forget yourself, and in this crazy art world that's never a bad thing.

If you have any random scribbles lying around you want me to take a stab at,
remember I'm only a click away: info@amberalvarez.com
Afterall, I could use the help ;)

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Tag! You're it!

Ok, So this is the kind of stuff I never do... A couple of weeks ago I was tagged by the always inspiring Laura Zarrin. Keeping true to my tagging/dodge ball past, it's taken me a while to actually do anything about it. I have decided to throw caution to the wind and play! Here are 7 random facts about me.

Fact #1 Category - Random:
My roots in entrepreneurship were dug at a young age. When I was thirteen my brother, sister and I made a killing with our lemonade stand. On a good weekend we'd pull in a cool $300. Of course, we had a keen sense of supply and demand.

Our backyard sat at the base of one of the most treacherous hikes in Hawaii. Sadly for the tourists, happily for us kids, it was always written up in tourist guides as "beginner." The write up touted the deep history of the hike, King Kamehameha used to offer up human sacrifice at the mountain's waterfalls. The hike led to the mouth of the mountain where you'd be treated to up to fifty-foot waterfalls and a pool of fall water to swim in.

As a result we would watch from afar as sweet newlywed couples happily jumped out of their rented convertibles wearing nothing but shorts, bikini tops and Birkenstocks to "just try this little trail." Flash forward three to five hours when the same couple no longer holding hands but now covered in mud and scrapes would come down the mountain yelling at each other. They would once again be reunited in love and adoration focused on a wild beverage buying frenzy. We wouldn't have done any better selling water in the Sahara.


Fact #2 Category -Top Secret!:
My favorite sound in the whole world is that shredding sound you get when you tear two pieces of Velcro apart. Sometimes while I'm shoe shopping I'll wander over to the kid's section and spend a good ten minutes just "shopping" for Velcro shoes for my fake children.

Fact #3 Category - Thankful for Modern Science:
I'm almost blind. I recently had a new prescription filled for contacts at Lens Crafters. The guy filling it said in a fairly annoying way "Woah! This is the highest prescription I've ever filled!" I assumed he was some type of Dougie Howser who'd barely just been employed. He'd been working there for more than four years....

So, I give thanks daily for the wonders of modern science. I thank God that I was born now, instead of in any other time in the history of the World. Now is the only time that I'd be allowed to make my living, so very happily using my eyes every day of my life.

Fact #4 Category - Aesthetic:
I hate moderately priced jewelery. I adore the clunky stuff you pull out of quarter machines on the corner. My motto is "If it's not Plastic it'd better be worth more than your car." I also pick gold or platinum every time. I turn up my nose at silver.

Fact #5 - Category - Top Secret:
Sub Category - Braggartly and Unattractive to Disclose:
Sub-Sub Category - The Stuff My Parents Pull Out Whenever They Feel Like Someone Is Trying to One Up Them:
When I was seven years old I won the National California Raisin's art competition. My grandmother had also entered along with my dad and a teacher from my school, so they were proud, but slightly miffed when I brought home a check for ten grand.

My entry was sculpted clay and incorporated my favorite doll furniture. It was entitled "Raisin' Raisins." I'd already won a ton of other art contests at that point and was subsequently featured on this cult show "Hawaii's Superkids." In college whenever I'd go into creative crisis my mom would bring up the tv show from twenty years ago as proof that I was cut out to be at Pratt.

Fact #6 - Category - Totally Random
I can make horseshoes like nobody's business. When I was a sophomore in college I spent a summer at Interlochen teaching high school students how to oil paint. While there I developed an infatuation for the welding instructor. If your guy's lacking GQ-like muscles tell him to go weld some stuff. Nothing heats up a summer romance like a welding iron. Anyway, oh yeah, can I make a horseshoe....Sigh....

Fact #7 - Category - The Last One You're Getting:
Filed Under 'F' for Freak:
I've never had a driver's license. I went from biking/hitching/busing/kayaking to school to train jumping/taxi hailing and never got behind a wheel between the two.

Here are the rules:
Rule #1. Link to your tagger and post the rules
Rule #2. Post 7 random facts about yourself
Rule #3. Tag 7 friends at the end of your post and link to them
Rule #4. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.


I am tagging: People you should want to know about too -
1.
Sandra Gaddis - her talent is electric. Sandra is one of my favorite things about college. That's saying a lot ;)
2.
Beth Logan - Art Stuff for the hungry soul. Beth is my guru and my idol.
3.
Hanna Sandvig - her prolific variety motivates me just about daily. Check her paintings/dolls/garden ETC!
4.
Laura Lee - makes me laugh, cry and nod my head in solidarity, sometimes all three at once.
5. Melissa - scientifically improving children's winter experiences in the most fashionable way.
6.
Breanne - Sometimes two people just click. I think that's how everyone feels when they meet Breanne
7.
Shilo - My one stop BFF, LOL, OME support shop

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Something's Coming, Something Soon!

Dearest lovelies, I've taken a bit of a blogspot sabatical these days. I'm in the process of building a new and exciting company (can't hardly wait to share it with you), freelancing like a crazy lady and working long hours at job-job. I have not forgotten you. I'm looking forward to being back in full swing. In the meantime, here's something I plucked off one of my idea trees this weekend:

I'll be spending tomorrow at the New York Times Small Business Summit. Hopefully I'll have fun stuff to report and lots of doodles to share when I get back.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Sharpie Really Shouldn't Sell Their Markers in Sets

Why would you ever really need more than one Sharpie? Why would you ever really need a Sharpie in a color other than black? These are the tough kinds of questions I'm not afraid to ask. They are the kind of questions that require research. As a result of my inquisitive nature I am the owner of a boxed set of 25 colored Sharpies.


There are days where I just can't draw. Then there are days where I just can't draw. A dedicated free association day with a strange medium that I can really control knocks that out of me. Thanks be to God that these days of not being able to draw are now few and far between. My head just couldn't handle the effects of long term Sharpie fumes if they came more often.



This is a free association moment:
But I bet you know what it means...or at least your subconscious does. Heeeyyyy.
These sketches are done with that infamous box of Sharpies. A closer look at them now, as it's been a while since they were done, makes me realize they kind of look like they belong on a Harijuku Tour. I'll have to have my people call Guin. I mean, if I can create a zillion illustrations with 25 stinky makers, without much give in the point and a tendency to bleed on any paper one might attempt to use them with, my people can certainly call Guin.




If time goes by and you don't see these on tour it's most likely because they belong in my new 'What a Doll!' series. Hold your horses, you'll see them in all their glory as they're actually meant to be seen soonish.




Don't you worry your pretty little head, this is just a smattering. There's plenty more where these came from.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Fall Forward

Woot! Guess what? It's like 5pm but it feels like 4pm. Let's hear it for the savings time!! Daylight savings might be one of my favorite things about living in the Continental U.S.

In honor of all this lovely 'Falling' - Here's a bit of Autumn surface design.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Construction Paper on White - Yum

These surface designs are inspired by the one special someone in my life that always makes me happy, my perpetual ray of sunshine and dorkiness.




Friday, October 31, 2008

Pumpkin Carving, Drawing and Roasting

Yes, in that order.
I'm spending tonight in perfect NYC haunting mode. I'll be vamping it up on the Upper East and Upper West side. We're starting the night off at St. John the Divine, screening the Phantom of the Opera - old school style with a live creepy and ancient organ to spook up the silent film. Then I'm heading to a party/dance for the rest of the evening on the other side of Manhattan. Happy Haunting!

I got together with about ten friends last Monday for an evening of carving bliss.
Here's Emmett, my new version of Jack:
Here's one of the pages of new illustrations he inspired:

Party on!
Also, if you're in the market for the best pumpkin seeds you've ever tasted, here's my favorite pumpkin treat. I took a keg load of these bad boys into "job job" where they met with rave reviews, which isn't necessarily something I'm used to receiving for baked veggie guts. I'm sure they're best paired with Pale Ale. SIGH -- Here's to another year of sobriety!

Here it goes:


Roasted Pumpkin Seeds of Yumminess

1.Gut your pumpkin.
2. Don't wash the seeds - not only is it bad luck, it takes away some of the yumminess.
3. Remove the strings and the pulp and as much gooeyness as you can manage.
4. Crank your oven to 250 degrees.
5. Put them in an even layer on parchment paper in as many baking pans as it takes to get the job done.
6. Sprinkle fresh cracked sea salt on them and then toss them in the oven. Stir them every once in a while
7. Go be fabulous while they bake (I like trying on different Halloween wigs while they're in the oven). Doing a Halloween like activity only enhances their yumminess.
8. Bake 20 - 40 minutes or until they're a pretty color.
9. In a big bowl mix together 3 Tablespoons sugar, 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon ground cardamom. Stir it all up.
10. Take your fresh baked pumpkin seeds from the oven and add them to 1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil in a frying pan on the stove.
11.Heat them up mixing them in the oil as you add 2 Tablespoons of sugar. Stir them all up for a minute or two, until the sugar dissolves and they start to caramelize.
12. Take them off the stove and add them to the bowl of spices.
13. Stir them up good.
14. Marvel at their yumminess.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Stop the Presses! Hold Everything!

So, remember when I told you that it was OK to make mistakes? You must have thought to yourself, "Really Amber? You are pure perfection! you never have a flaw to accept as a mistake." I'm going to let you in on my secret. I messed up, Etsy Style. After recent events came to light, it became clear that Amberbop Shop was not going to be able to hold all the product that I want to make available for the public. I'll explain why below, but I've had to start over with a new Etsy Store and my old little shop front is now a thing of the very recent past. ;)

So with no further ado: Get the horns ready... Man the drum line.....
Tah Tah Da Dah!!!



It's hot - It's cute - It's Sassy...Sexy...Sweet...
It's Amber Ink.

I'm also going to let you in on a 'top secret' kind of secret. I've been dying to get back into the scrapbook and stamping world. For a long time I've wanted my own little piece of scrapping turf. I've had my eye on the domain
http://www.amberink.com/ for more than a year now. I've been stalking it non-stop. When the user who had it let it expire two months ago I had my fingers crossed. I just hoped the owner wouldn't snatch it up again (after it expires it goes into a holding spot where they can still get it back). Then a few days ago, wonder of wonders, it was released to the public and I bought it! So I'll be slowly building a real live business with tangible product. I'll be starting the company with downloadable scrapbook papers that you can print at home. I'm excited as pie!
They'll be showing up at Etsy soon!

Ok, run don't walk!

Monday, October 06, 2008

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