Strawberryluna

National Aviary Maker Challenge – Roseate Spoonbill

The National Aviary is America’s only independent indoor nonprofit zoo dedicated exclusively to birds. Located in right here in Pittsburgh, on the historic North Side, The National Aviary’s diverse collection comprises more than 500 birds representing more than 150 species from around the world, many of them threatened or endangered in the wild.

On July 1, 2017 The Aviary announced The Maker Challenge, a partnership with the Monmade, which is trade group for creative, maker-based entrepreneurs that we are a part of here in Pittsburgh and we were honored to be among the 18 chosen local makers for The Maker Challenge.

The Maker Challenge features one local craft business, maker enterprise, or entrepreneurial artist each month who have been hand selected to create new and exclusive products for their gift shop. Each Maker was assigned a particular bird and month in the Aviary to highlight the conservation struggles and efforts worldwide for that particular species.

Our month is March 2018 and our special bird is The Roseate Spoonbill, a wading bird of the ibis family with distinctive white, buff-yellowand pink feathers. Once common, the Roseate Spoonbill was avidly hunted for its plumagein the US to near-extinction in Mid-to-Late 1800s. Now returning and found in the coastal Gulf regions of the Southern US, as well as in the Caribbean, Central and South America.

Shown here (and the last photo below) are some of the illustrations and designs that we created exclusively for The National Aviary to carry in their gift shop, and available there through the summer of 2019. Our suite of products include prints of all 3 of the above illustrations in 2 standard sizes (8×10 and 114×14 inches), as well as greeting cards, tea towels and canvas tote bags too.

As a part of our Maker Challenge Month, Allison did a silkscreen print demo at the The National Aviary onto blank greeting cards of our new Peace Dove design that also double as a coloring page that both the little ones and grown ups can color, (or leave as is in striking black & white) to frame or to send to friends and family. If you are heading to The National Aviary in March, definitely drop by the front entrance gift shop and check out our Roseate Spoonbill exclusive pieces, as well as the items from some of the previous artists in The Maker Challenge!

Steve Frykholm’s Picnic Posters for Herman Miller

WHY_PicnicPosters_02One day out of the blue our good friend Terrence McClusky sent a link to an incredible little blog post and video about Herman Miller designer Steve Frykholm and his iconic “Picnic Posters”, created for the company’s annual employee & family picnics.

As young designer in 1970 (and Herman Miller’s first in-house graphic designer) Frykholm was approached to try his hand at creating a poster to announce the annual picnic that year. What blossomed from a simple side-project utilizing old school techniques that he learned in the Peace Corps is honestly so wonderful.

“It’s a sequence of events, one color at a time. And then that last one goes on and it’s better than you imagined.” – Steve Frykholm

Be still my heart.

Washing out a screen in preparation for printing.

Frykholm_PPP_washoutClick any of the images above or below to watch the beautifully done short video on Frykholm’s history, process and The Picnic Posters series.

Frykholm standing in front of the MoMA‘s collection of his Picnic Posters.

Screen shot 2015-08-04 at 2.17.46 PMFrykholm watching over the printing & drying process. Screen shot 2015-08-04 at 2.14.17 PMPhotograph of one of the many Herman Miller employee & family annual picnics. I want to travel back in time to this place and day…

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Kay Nielsen: Illustrations of Gorgeous Form & Light in “East Of The Sun & West Of The Moon”

Kay Nielsen illustration from “East of the Sun, West of the Moon”1914, via Brain Pickings.

‘And then she lay on a little green patch in the midst of the gloomy thick wood.’

As a lifelong lover of fairy tales & folk tales (quite literally, I have never grown out of my adoration for their magic and storylines ever). Like many others, I have been fascinated by the illustrations that have come to accompany theses tales in the past couple of centuries. How lucky we are in this way to have not only the tales, but books beautifully illustrated by visionary artists illuminating twists, turns, and the drama of these ancient stories.

One of my many favorites is the Danish genius of form & light, Kay Nielsen (1886 – 1957) who worked both in his native Denmark as well as the UK and the US in his career. He illustrated many books and set decorations, as well as his noted work for Disney, but today I am highlighting his unbelievably epic and lovely work in one book, “East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon”, (this version published in 1914)as it is staggering in its detail, drama and use of light and texture.

Following are some of my favorite examples from 3 pretty great sources: Brain Pickings, 50 Watts, and the Flickr feed of the National Library NZ on The Commons all of which are amazing resources and well worth your time and support.

Kay Nielsen illustration from “East of the Sun, West of the Moon”1914, via 50 Watts.

‘He too saw the image in the water; but he looked up at once, and became aware of the lovely Lassie who sat there up in the tree’.

 

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Illustration by Kay Nielsen in “East of the Sun and West of the Moon”, 1914, via National Library NZ on The Commons

‘On that island stands a church; in that church is a well; in that well swims a duck.’

 

Illustration by Kay Nielsen for “East of the Sun and West of the Moon”, 1914 via Brain Pickings

‘The King went into the Castle, and at first his Queen didn’t know him, he was so wan and thin, through wandering so far and being so woeful.’

 

Kay Nielsen illustration from “East of the Sun, West of the Moon”1914, via 50 Watts.

‘So the man gave him a pair of snow-shoes.’

Illustration by Kay Nielsen in “East of the Sun and West of the Moon”, 1914, via National Library NZ on The Commons

Illustration by Kay Nielsen in “East of the Sun and West of the Moon”, 1914, via National Library NZ on The Commons

‘He took a long, long farewell of the Princess, and when he got out of the Giant’s door, there stood the Wolf waiting for him.’

Published in 1914, this version of “East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon” marks a high point in the American era known as the Golden Age Of Illustration (roughly from the 1880’s through the early 1920’s). We will we publishing more posts from some of our favorites from that time in the near future. Thanks for reading & I hope that you enjoy!

Happy Halloween Vintage Postcard Round-up!

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Happy Halloween! We hope that you get lots of treats today and no tricks. Well, maybe a few…

Halloween is my favorite holiday, not just for the candy, but for the long and twisted road of tradition wending it’s way into the distant past, through history, pagan cultural artifacts and religious rites, harvest festivals and communal celebration as what we know now as Halloween is based on festivals such as Samhain traditionally marked the beginning of the increasing darkness that becomes a long winter.

So let’s get started with some vintage postcard finds! Anyone can imagine an iconic witch, as above, riding on her broomstick with her Familiars. And not that it’s not a beauty, but I tend to really love the more offbeat vintage postcards. Especially the ones where the narrative and the symbolism seems pretty obscure and stranger than normal. (All postcards in this roundup are clickable and will take you right to the sites where I found them too.)

For example, this fine bat adorning a pumpkin with a candle running horizontally and lit at both ends. The poem on the postcard shares a little folk magic.

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If you light a candle at the ends / Twirl it that the air it rend / Should the right end stay lit / All will be gay./ If the left stay lit, the witches stay / If both stay lit, you will be it. / If both go out, you have routed them out.

Good to know! If such home magic was once more readily known, I’d bet this below scene with a pretty young witch would also be of use, with many a candle a-lit.

vintage halloween card retro (2)

And while on the topic of witches, I loved these two below that sort of speak to a White Magic type of crafting more than Black Magic:

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

These two symmetrical, twin witches are wearing unusually light colors, and even their twin black cat familiars sport white collars. Look, all they are trying to do here is hook you up with the love of your life. So what if a little incantation is needed?

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

The same goes for the above lovely matchmaker. Her face radiates like the woman on Contadina tins, just happily cooking away with her white owls and black bat motifs. Perhaps the young miss below is one of their clients, hoping to find true love among the many pumpkin bachelors in her class.

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

But let’s move on to less beautiful witches, as they are much more fun. The below has something of a goblin mixed with a Cardinal going on, which is just fantastic.

Now clearly we have meandered over to Pumpkinheadville. In the below postcard, I am sure that Asian robed lady once was beautiful, but in this scene? She scares the hell out of me. And that is what All Hallows Eve is all about!

vintage halloween paper scrap (12)

A little flight into the surreal, with a false reflection of a giant owl? Or is the creepily white sheeted man a terrifying reflection of the owl? We may never know.

‘O! Charming little punks:

Now I present, two examples of a sub genre I love, where the Devil is being totally awesome at parties. Here he helps himself to carefully laid bounty of goodies with his (fruit? Veggie?) buddies:

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

And best, here he is planning the menu! With living anthropomorphized fruits, wine and a lamp looking on, and completely stoked.

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

Supernatural Mischief Chefs!

Vintage Halloween Postcards and Halloween superstitions from the turn of the century!  llittlemisscelebration.com

I’m also a big fan of the more spooky / supernatural themed postcards as well. Lots of Victorian “mirror gazing” and other small spells play out in scenes where the participants are hoping to peer into the future and see their One True Love to come. This one is especially beautiful with the young, fairly innocent looking girl’s shadow casting against the wall as a dark witch and her one-day partner in crime appearing only in the mirror. Truly classic horror movie stuff.

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

Nope, not scary or spooky at all.

Vintage Halloween Postcards and Halloween superstitions from the turn of the century!  llittlemisscelebration.com

This one is just gorgeous. How many times have I stayed up too late reading a scary book only to be regret it at the slightest sights sounds? Many, many.

Vintage Halloween Postcards and Halloween superstitions from the turn of the century!  llittlemisscelebration.com

Honestly? I just have no clue what is happening here. And that is awesome.

Halloween | Senos atvirutės

And while this isn’t a postcard? It’s the damn creepiest vintage kid in a Halloween costume photograph that I’ve seen. Eeeeee! Happy Halloween everyone!

 

 

 

Winter Guide Illustration for The Pittsburgh City Paper

Happy Winter Pittsburgh!

We’re really excited about our first illustration gig for The Pittsburgh City Paper, and doubly stoked that it’s the cover illustration for the 2013 Winter Guide.

Our chilly, sled loving bird in the ChillyBurgh is an olde timey Steeler fan as he graces the cover. The issue came out Wednesday, January 15th and will be around for one week around the city. And there’s even a digital edition here too.

Covering arts, music, theater, dance, excercise and cool things to do all around the city the Winter Guide is loaded with information about the things that make Pittsburgh so darn awesome. Don’t miss the much anticipated Pittsburgh City Paper Winter Guide!

New Release! The Dragon’s Forest Silkscreen Art Print

Raaaarrrrgggghhh!!!

Come take a walk with your new BFF in The Dragon’s Forest.

Breathing smoke and curling up around his favorite trees, this Dragon can’t wait to come over and hang out.

This is our new limited edition screenprint, hand pulled by us here in Pittsburgh, The Dragon’s Forest is a 2 color silkscreen art print based is on our poster created exclusively for Jackie Kashian’s awesome podcast The Dork Forest live show at CONvergence in July 2012.

This art print is now freshly available in our webshop here and also in our Etsy shop here.

Inks: 2 colors with hand-mixed dragon scales green and midnight black non-toxic water based silkscreen inks. Edition: Limited edition of 200. Each print is hand signed and numbered by strawberryluna. Size: 16 x22 inches (45.7 cm x 61 cm). Paper: Archival, no-acid, recycled content, American made Cougar Opaque White, 100lb cover weight.

Fits beautifully into either a standard 16″ x 20″ frame by trimming the border, or into an 18″ x 24″ frame (as below) as is with a matte.

 

New Art Print Release: Poppies

Now that we are fully into the summer, it’s time to introduce our new sun-baked and semi-abstract, small art print, “Poppies”.

Bright, overlapping poppies waving together against a deep sun filled background. Two peas in a pod!

Playing with imaginary nature and abstract shapes is something we love to do. Every now and again a quick experimental sketch becomes something worth playing with further. This art print is based off of the illustration for our new Andrew Bird and Death Cab For Cutie poster, which you can see here.

Please note, this is a digital and giclee archival print (not a silkscreen print)
of an original illustration by strawberryluna. Each print is hand titled and signed.

  • Designed to be flexible and fit beautifully into an 11×14 sized frame with a matte, or you easily trim down the border area so that it can fit or 8.5 x 11 or 8×10 sized standard frame quite easily.
  • Size: Paper size is 9.5 x 12.75 inches (24.13 cm x 32.4 cm). Image size measures 6.5 x 9.5 inches (16.5 cm x 24.1 cm).

“Poppies” is now available in our webshop here and also in our Etsy store here. Ready to go to a new home and brighten your walls! $20

  •  Additional photo below shows how this print might looked framed. (Sold unframed & without a matte.)

Click any of the above images for more info or to purchase.

2 New Art Print Releases: Be Kind Always

“Be Kind Always”, Introducing 2 new art prints in 2 fresh colorways!
“Be Kind Always”, so nice, we designed it twice. Both versions of “Be Kind Always” are sized at 12×12 inches, aka Record / LP frame size and are open edition, Indigo art prints in bright sky blue and lime green.
What we can say? Could be Allison’s Quaker school education showing, we just think life should be that simple. As humans, we might not always get there every day, but we believe one should always try. And here’s a friendly little cheerleader to remind you.
We decided to experiment with this design, and these two new art prints are Indigo prints, rather than silkscreens. Following a bolder and brighter illustration route than we could with screen printing we’re exploring a more modern printing technique by utilizing the Indigo press format. After all, screen printing is a lovely and ancient tradition, but we love having a foot in both the historic past and the ever-changing future at the same time whenever possible. With incredible detail & vibrant colors and archival inks and archival, eco-certified 100lb cover paper (see details below) we think you’ll love this addition too.
Both colorways of “Be Kind Always” are now available in our webshop here and also in our Etsy Shop here $18 each.
Specially designed and sized to slip right into an ubiquitous and inexpensive frame. Square never looked so hip.
  • Edition: Open. Each print is hand signed and titled.
  • Size: Paper size – 12 x12 inches (30.5cm x 30.5 cm.) Image Size – 10×10 to allow plenty of room for a matte, if desired.
  • Paper: Mohawk Via Bright White, 100lb cover weight which is an archival, no-acid, American manufactured paper by Mohawk using Wind Power electricity. Produced with 30% post consumer recycled content. Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and Green Seal Certified.
  • Fits beautifully into a standard 12×12 inch frame with or without a matte.
Additional photo below shows how this print might looked framed. (Sold unframed & without a matte.)
Click any of the above images for more info or to purchase.

New strawberryluna Fab Sale starts Saturday June 30th!

We’re thrilled to be working with our friends at Fab.com once again on our newest Fab Sale on June, 30, 2012.

This sale, like all Fab Sales is exclusive to Fab.com, lasting just 72 quick hours with lots of great deals on our art prints and Alphabet Prints at anywhere from 20% – 40% off of every day retail prices that you won’t be able to take advantage of anywhere else.

And, best! We’re release FOUR new, Fab.com exclusive release art prints. Get ’em early and get ’em at Fab.com exclusive prices 6/30-/12 – 7/2/12 – ONLY. (Want a sneak peek at these 4 new art print? Click here!)

If are already a member of Fab you can check out our preview here.

If you have yet to snap up a free, absolutely easy to sign up for, and spam free membership use this link to join Fab and get great deals on great design every day.

Our Fab Sale starts on Saturday, June 30, 2012 at 11am (EST) and lasts just until Tuesday July 3, 2012 at 11am. That’s it. For Pitt. Don’t miss out!

New release: Lunch Bear eco-friendly lunch bags

Say “Hello!” to your new BFF. It’s Lunch Bear!

Introducing the first design in our new line of eco-conscious goods, Lunch Bear is  silkscreen printed with eco-friendly inks and made from 100% recycled cotton canvas using certified Fair Trade and Fair Labor practices in a lovely natural and unbleached cotton.

These fully machine washable reusable canvas lunch bags are super roomy and will hold anything from a substantial snack to a large lunch. No really!

– Size: 7″ wide x 10.5″ tall with a 4.5″ flat bottom gusset. Featuring a Velco-like self sealing and snug top for snack-time safety.

Not only does Lunch Bear give hugs, he gives help! A portion of the proceeds from each sale of our Lunch Bear lunch bags goes to the anti-bullying organization Pacer. To learn more about Pacer and the anti-bullying movement visit them here.

With Lunch Bear you’ll never eat alone again. Lunch Bear lunch bags are now available in our shop here.

New print released: Bird Dog & Bird

Bird Dog & Bird, our new 4-color hand screen printed art print.


Sometimes a great moment happens…

And if you are lucky, it’s right in front of you. Bird Dog & Bird is our newest, all hand silkscreen printed art print of just such an instant. And why couldn’t these two be the best of friends? Stranger things have happened!

  • Hand pulled screen print. 4 colors from 3 screens with bright teal hound dog blue, warm and transparent burnt orange and cocoa brown water based silkscreen non-toxic inks.
  • Edition of 105, hand signed, titled and numbered.
  • Size: 16 x 20 inches (40.6 cm x 55.9 cm.)
  • Printed onto archival, no-acid, recycled content, American made Cougar Opaque White, 100lb cover weight.

This print fits beautifully into either a standard 16″ x 20″ frame (as shown above), or into an 18″ x 24″ frame with a matte.

“Bird Dog & Bird” is now available in my Etsy shop here, and…soon to be available in my new website & webstore! OMG! 

Check out some photographs from the hand screen printing process of this print below. To see more process photos, visit my Flickr account.

Getting ready to print the first color, “Bird Dog & Bird” screen print.
1st color on our “Bird Dog & Bird” silkscreen art print.
2nd color on our “Bird Dog & Bird” silkscreen art print.
3rd & final color on our “Bird Dog & Bird” silkscreen art print. All done!