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Feature Friday: Des Sottises

Happy Feature Friday!
Today we have the fun, bright work of Margot Tissot who designs just about everything for her brand Des Sottises. You can find her illustrations on cards, posters and prints, tote bags, and even as pins — one of her favorite products to create! Her shop is based in Switzerland and we love getting to showcase amazing creatives and shops from all over the world! The images she illustrates are largely based off of things that inspire her, or are part of her daily life, which creates such a personal product! And we can’t help but just love that she illustrates veggies and makes stuff like broccoli and lettuce look pretty cool. Des Sottises has such an amazing diversity of illustrations and products, so keep reading to see more and learn about the maker behind the brand!

: Tell us a little bit about yourself!

: I’m Margot, I’m a 28 year old graphic/web designer based in Lausanne (Switzerland). Over the years while I practiced graphic design, I developed a passion for illustration and I’m trying to develop my little brand “des sottises” since nearly a year now. Beside this passion for illustration I am fascinated by the whole magical universe (I’m a Harry Potter fan) and I would like to think I’m a sorceress 😀

: How did your shop Des Sottises get its start?

: Des Sottises started in between two jobs. Last year, I lost my dream job for economical issues and I had a few weeks of unemployment. So I took advantage of this time to create my Etsy shop and created a lot of illustrations. I started with the animal alphabet, I made one illustration for each letters and searched for various supports to put them on. The animal alphabet poster, bookmark and pennant were my first items to sale.

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Feature Friday: Cheery Human Studios

Happy Feature Friday!

We are so excited about today’s feature because we are all about makers that use their artwork to brighten other’s days! That’s exactly what Kristina, the creator behind Cheery Human Studios, does and you’ll know just what we’re talking about once you see the fun and bright illustrated products she creates. She hand draws everything herself which we think is truly amazing and gives so much life and personality to her work! You can find her designs on just about everything, from pins, stickers, and keychains to prints, t-shirts, and accessories! We can’t wait for you to learn all about her background, process, and see work that truly is “cheery!!” — so keep reading to learn more about Kristina and Cheery Human Studios.

: Tell us a few things about yourself!

: Hello! My name is Kristina and I’m a 31 year old artist who was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. I grew up alongside my younger brother (the coolest guy I know) in a cute yellow house in East Hollywood where we were raised by my mother and aunt. For years, I thought I would be a studio musician, a piano accompanist, or a songwriter but life had other plans and I eventually found my way to design. After a year in a masters art program for Web Design and New Media, I was hired as a full-time designer at a studio in the San Francisco Bay Area and I never looked back. Now, I’m based out of Los Angeles where by day, I am a freelance UX / UI designer, which is just a mega fancy way of saying I do front-end design for applications on mobile devices and the web. On early mornings, nights & weekends, I work on Cheery Human Studios. When I’m not working, I love visiting the Wizarding World and Disneyland with my boyfriend, chilling with my cat Mochi, and spending time with my best friends and family.


: Your products and shop name are sure to make everyone smile! How did you come up with the name Cheery Human Studios and what made you want to start your own shop?
: When I started Cheery Human Studios, I was in a bit of a creative slump and a little bummed because of it. For years, I had wanted to start a side project of my own, but couldn’t seem to get one off the ground that made me feel excited and inspired. The name Cheery Human Studios came to me because I wanted to design things that made me and other people happy like magical fandoms and random favorites – cats, flowers, candy, tea, you name it! It started as a way for me to “work with my hands”, hence all of my hand lettered and hand drawn pieces. Doing so, reenergized me and pulled me out of my creative slump.

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Feature Friday: Nat Guinamard

Happy Feature Friday!

Today we’re featuring the work of Nat Guinamard and we think you’re going to love her incredibly expressive illustrations! Nat was kind enough to share some details on her Drawing a Day Challenge, her artistic background, and her knack for drawing faces. She also answered some of our questions too! So keep reading to learn more about her work and creative journey.

 

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Feature Friday: ArtDanilo

img_1956Happy Feature Friday! Today we’re so excited to feature the work of Danilo Dos Santos of ArtDanilo! We love the central theme behind his art, as it all displays the most beautiful biodiversity of Brazil! Between the colorful birds, turtles, and mammals he draws, you’re able to really see and feel the beauty of his country! Plus – it’s amazing how he uses his work to bring awareness to the importance of nature! His online store is filled with these works of art, so keep reading to see more and hear about how he got his start!

Castle Logo: Tell us a few things about yourself!
screen-shot-2017-02-23-at-9-28-10-pm: I was born in a city that has the name of a plant, Dracena. Here in Brazil we are surrounded by nature on all sides, even our money has drawings of animals. This is my first memory of drawing something, I loved to draw animals from the bills of money and books.
An interesting fact is that before I only drew in black and white, only after I met my beautiful wife Gizele did I start to draw colorful.

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Castle Logo: Your illustrations are beautiful! What made you decide to focus on biodiversity and portray it in a minimalistic way?
screen-shot-2017-02-23-at-9-28-10-pm: Thanks for the compliment! I decided to work on this topic in the first place because it interests me a lot, and also because it is very good for people to know more about the biodiversity where they live.
I decided to make them small because there are 100 drawings per collection and this way I can do more drawings in less time, and it is also a tribute to my wife who helps me a lot with this project, each drawing sheet has 16 cm, the size of her hand.

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DIY Pumpkin Painting

BY CAILIN BURKE

Halloween is right around the corner but the World Series is already here! I decided to combine the two when pumpkin painting this year. For some reason I had the overwhelming want to recreate the Mets home run apple, but didn’t realize how difficult it would be. After many hours, I love how it turned out and wanted to show you the steps to creating a more difficult pumpkin masterpiece!

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Feature Friday: Illustrator Ann Shen

tumblr_me5jodMvUZ1qbwmaiHappy Feature Friday!

Today we’re featuring the fun and bright illustrations of Ann Shen! We have actually been familiar with Ann’s work for awhile since we always come across her illustrations in different places online. We love how her designs have an aesthetic that makes it easy to recognize her work and we’re so excited to get the chance to learn more about her. From selling her pieces on Etsy and doing freelance projects, to working on her very first book (that will be released next fall!), Ann is one busy creative! Luckily she took the time to answer some of our questions and show us how much she really loves what she does. Read on to brighten up your Friday by seeing her illustrations!

Castle Logo: Tell us a little about yourself.
1445381491323: Hi! I’m Ann and I’m an illustrator, letterer, and graphic designer based in Los Angeles.
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Feature Friday: Caterham Design

22_September_Kate_Website_Profile_Photo_1Happy Feature Friday!

Today we’re bringing to you Catherine Dawes of Caterham Design! We fell in love with her hand-lettering instantly and think it’s so cool that something as simple as a phrase can be written to look fun, stylish, or even sophisticated. Catherine really does a great job in making sure her typography communicates something. We love how her pieces all have their own feeling or vibe attached to them! She has a lot of great advice to share and we can’t wait for you to keep reading to learn more about her creative journey thus far.

Castle Logo: Tell us a little about who you are.

CD logo:  Hi! I’m Catherine, a graphic artist from South Africa specializing in hand-lettering and calligraphy. I run my design studio, Caterham Design, from a dusty farm on the edge of the Kalahari; where I drink lots of coffee, eat my fair share of buttery pastries, and create hand-crafted designs for creative, artisan companies and individuals.

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Awesome People Please Apply!

Hello lovely readers!

As most of you are aware, every Friday we feature someone who is doing something creative or just plain cool on our site. If you write, draw, paint, play an instrument, dance, own a business, travel, sew, design, craft, or have any other talent you want to share, apply to be a Screen Shot 2014-03-14 at 17.05.05!

We love sharing what you guys are doing and it’s a great opportunity to show off what you do to your friends, family, colleagues and our readers from all over the world.

To apply simply shoot us an email at castlefoundations(at)gmail.com, tell us what you do and we will get back to you with our feature options.

We can’t wait to share some of the Features we already have lined up for this month!

–Tara & Cailin

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Feature Friday: Illustrator Valeria Susloparova

Happy Screen Shot 2014-03-14 at 17.05.05!

x_ad31278cThis week we talked to Valeria Susloparova of @vsusik, who has a large Instagram following for her amazing dog illustrations. We love this feature, because these aren’t your typical illustrations. She finds ways to make them unique and integrate 3D components, all while making her subjects have personality. From the drawing skills it takes to create the dog, to the element she adds to make the portrait humorous or cute, we can’t get enough of her work! She has always wondered what dogs are actually thinking, and her art really shows this thought process. Keep reading to hear more about Valeria and see some of the funniest dogs you’ll probably look at all day.

Castle Logo: Tell us a little about yourself.

rcLH9TbRhPM: My name is Valeria Susloparova. I was born in Russia and I have still lived here. My specialization is graphic design. I have been drawing all my life. I tried different painting techniques and materials, but I especially like watercolor painting. I have a gold labrador. He is my big love and inspiration. I enjoy reading, watching films and series, riding bicycle and nature.

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Castle Logo: How did you find your style of mixing illustration with physical objects?

rcLH9TbRhPM: It all has happened in a creative process. I continue developing my skills in this direction.

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Castle Logo: You paint a lot of dogs. What about them inspires you to create your pieces?

rcLH9TbRhPM:  Yes, basically I draw dogs but I can create illustrations using different techniques. Dogs…Their funny and cute faces inspire me. I wonder what they are thinking about and I try to reflect it in my illustrations.

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Castle Logo: What art supplies do you use most for your work?

:rcLH9TbRhPM  I work with watercolor and use watercolor pencils to breathe life into my paintings because I like the way they depict the texture of animal fur.

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Castle Logo: Do you sell your work or take commissions?

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:  It has always been my hobby. There are a lot of requests and offers to make more illustrations now. I put not only time but also love into my paintings. If I need to give someone my illustration, I am really upset. But I am glad, if painting has a new home, a new ‘owner’. Unfortunately, I live in Russia and I can’t guarantee safe delivery of my works. I can send them with pleasure but only electronically. And there are some advantages in this way of delivery: One, you have to wait a few seconds to get it, and two, you can print it in any size using any paper.

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Castle Logo: Do you have an illustration that is your personal favorite?

rcLH9TbRhPM:  It’s difficult to choose a special one. I love all of them!

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Castle Logo: You graphic design and illustrate. What do you like about each?

rcLH9TbRhPM:  I am trying to keep up to different innovations in this sphere of art. There are a lot of talented people in this area. They motivate me to develop and create in order my works to be more interesting and high quality.

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Castle Logo: When did you start using Instagram to share your pieces?

rcLH9TbRhPM: Firstly, it was my personal Instagram profile but when I posted some illustrations, it become something more. Now, it’s dedicated to my works.

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Castle Logo: What are some of your goals for 2015?rcLH9TbRhPM

:  To draw! To paint! And once again – to paint! It’s necessary to develop yourself constructively and creatively. Then, I really would like to travel. Also, a long list of books to read is waiting for me.

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Castle Logo: Any advice?rcLH9TbRhPM:  If you are a beginner in painting and face some difficulties and failures, the most important thing is not to lose heart but to continue working. Paint every day, develop your world outlook! Learn and study more, examine the works of more experienced artists. Dream up and improvise, be bold and take risks. Love what you do. It is sure to “yield fruit”.

 

Feature Friday: MIRA Apparel

Happy Screen Shot 2014-03-14 at 16.58.05!
screenshot-50This week we talked to Miranda Kinkead of MIRA Apparel! We love how her apparel line came about, as she set a challenge for herself and then went on to achieve it. We also believe that you should find a way to incorporate what you love to do into your work/profession, and Miranda was able to take her passion of creating art and make it into a business. Read on to hear more about MIRA Apparel!

Castle Logo: Tell us about yourself.

screenshot-54: I have a passion for all things pertaining to the arts. I’m an avid moviegoer, a traveller, music lover, collector, jack-of-all-trades, master of none. And I am a second year Creative Industries student at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada.

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Castle Logo: How did your business get started? What made you decide to create t-shirts?

screenshot-54: Every year I like to set new goals and challenges for myself. At the beginning of 2014, I wanted to find a way to work doing something that I am passionate about. I have always thought of selling artwork but instead I decided to combine my love of visual art and fashion to create “wearable designs.” I worked all summer towards launching the Mira brand and then I received a grant through a program called Summer Company. Now Mira Apparel is running independently online.

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Castle Logo: All of your packages come with a handwritten note in a bottle. What kind of messages do you like to send to your customers?

screenshot-54: Not many people receive handwritten letters any more so I thought it would be a sweet idea to write little notes to those who purchase from Mira Apparel. They are random messages so they can range from inspirational quotes, quotes from people, books, music suggestions, interesting words, dares. Some things I find and others I make up: all of which are carefully chosen and resonate with me or that I have some connection to. I really like the idea of spreading kind words positivity, and uplifting things (paying it forward). Hopefully I write something that gives the reader a little bit of happiness that day, and then I’m happy.

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Castle Logo: How would you describe the type of person who wears (or should wear) MIRA Apparel?

screenshot-54: Mira Apparel can be worn by anyone. It is a brand for both men and women. The graphic designs will appeal to someone who appreciates art and something a little different. My sketches may attract individuals who prefer a twist to a staple piece like the t-shirt; and are looking for something a little different in their wardrobe.

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Castle Logo: What are some of the challenging aspects of having your own business?

screenshot-54: The main challenge would have to be being an independent owner. I do everything myself when it comes to the designing, social media correspondence, management, accounting shipping and so on. Keeping on top of all those responsibilities while being a student and maintaining a social life can be difficult at times.

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Castle Logo: Where do you see MIRA Apparel going in the long-term future? Do you have any plans for the expansion of MIRA Apparel’s merchandise line?

screenshot-54: Future collections will be released featuring new sketches and designs. I have also considered expanding the line to include either accessories or trinkets for some sort, even posters, but we will have to wait and see. 😉

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Castle Logo: What is the process for designing and producing your shirts?

screenshot-54: It all starts with a sketch that I create in my sketchbook. I think of a concept that relates to the Mira theme and then a draw it out. Afterward, I scan the sketch to turn it into a computer graphic and then I may manipulate some elements to make the sketch fit for a t-shirt. This is the longest part. After the designing is finished I take the graphics to a local printing company in Toronto and they screen print the designs onto 100% white cotton tees.

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Castle Logo: What’s your favorite part about what you do?

screenshot-54: I love being the “boss”. It is quite the learning experience to be able to create your own business from the ground up and run it independently, especially at my age. I feel like I will gain a lot of vital knowledge, experience and insight from this venture and I’m excited about the future of this brand. It is also really awesome that I get to put my artistic passion into a lucrative pursuit. And being passionate about what I do always makes it worthwhile. Also doing this while being a full-time student affords me the opportunity to make mistakes and learn as I go along.

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Castle Logo: Name three things that you can’t live without.

screenshot-54: This is actually really difficult! There are many things I can’t live without so 3 out of several would be:

-Great Music

-Sunlight & Late Nights

-Positivity & Contentment

(sorry, kinda cheated ^ :P)

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Castle Logo: Do you have any mentors that helped you get where you are today?

screenshot-54: I have always had my parents along side me and through out my life they have been my biggest supporters. I can go to them for an opinion or advice for a plan of action and I am really grateful for that.

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Castle Logo: What advice would you give young entrepreneurs?

screenshot-54: You have to have a clear motive in mind. Know exactly why you are pursuing your business venture because a clear objective will drive you. You should also be passionate about the endeavor because it will help to maintain your motivation. And it always helps to constantly set goals to stay on track, focused and organized.

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See more from MIRA Apparel!: