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Art Heals

by abby on November 15, 2016 | Comment
Mother Rabbit and Daughter Star Gazing | Mixed media on paper

Mother Rabbit and Daughter Star Gazing | Mixed media on paper

Art heals the troubled soul. That’s what I’ve been saying lately. And this week, I’m focusing on preparing for my first holiday show of 2016, the HOLIDAY BAZAAR at the Rochester Science Center and Museum, so I can help make the world a more beautiful and loving place.

 

Holiday Bazaar table for AbbyDora Design

The practice run of our display table.

Our display table will be jam packed with artwork to make you and your child or grand child smile. I promise! Interested in attending this show and support local upstate artists? Here are the details:

2016 Holiday Bazaar

WHEN
FRI November 18th 5pm-9pm
SAT November 19th 9:30am-5pm
SUN November 2oth 11am-4pm

WHERE
Rochester Museum & Science Center
AbbyDora Design’s Table
Main building (bldg #1)  in Space #606, on the Mezzanine
(use the back stairs to reach the mezzanine level)

children's print sale

OH OH OH! There’s more! It’s time for me to clear out space in my studio, so this weekend I will be offering special SALES on select prints and original art! The earlier you arrive the more you are going to save! Oh yeah.

Cheers!

 

Big Thanks!

by abby on September 14, 2016 | Comment

photo of AbbyDora Design booth at Clothesline Festival in Rochester

Wow—what a great weekend!
Thank you to all who came to the AbbyDora Design booth. I enjoyed meeting everyone. There were so many wonderful stories shared with me last weekend about where my artwork is located and enjoyed.

I’m honored to know that my art is in:
classrooms
teacher and administrator’s offices
libraries
bakeries
children’s bedrooms
children’s bathrooms (you know those whales, ducks, and frogs need their water!)
playrooms

It’s just amazing. I’m fulfilling my job by spreading joy and color!

Clothesline 2016 is Coming

by abby on August 29, 2016 | Comment

Memorial Art Gallery art show postcard

Hi all!
I’m happy to announce that this year I’ll be back at the Memorial Art Gallery’s art show, CLOTHESLINE FESTIVAL! I know I’m not the only one who’s hoping for beautiful sunny skies and warm weather for the art-packed weekend.

This 400+ artists art and fine craft show is taking place on September 10th 10-6pm and September 11th 10-5pm . There’s live music and local restaurants and food trucks, too. It’s a great time to transition into Fall and start your holiday shopping.

Our booth will be located in the same spot as last year:
ZONE B: BOOTH 305

(near the University Ave and Goodman Street entrance)

Keep your eyes open for our bright green and blue banner and a tent filled with colorful children’s art (originals and fine art prints) and paper goods for all ages.

children's art prints and note cards

I hope you’ll stop by and say hello!

Cheers!

My New Studio

by abby on May 16, 2016 | Comment

children's book designer's office with bookcases

Happy Spring to all! It’s been a busy last few months. D and I bought a house! (Eeeeeeee!)So our hands and minds have been very busy settling into our new home. I’ve also been creating a new studio.

This studio space wasn’t just going to be “good enough” or “yeah that’s OK”. NO! This one was going to to hit a few of my dream check list items. What items, you might say? Well, first colorful walls, then white bookcases that fill entire wall, and third let’s have a window seat to dream up big ideas. Check, check, check!

The renovation started with refinishing the wood floors, painting all the walls and built-in bookcases to brighten up the space. Yesterday afternoon, I finally found the time to empty out 15 boxes of books to fill my bookshelves with books: that I’ve designed, books I admire, and books that inspire. I also added in pieces of my own artwork and little touches of photos and collectibles that make me smile.

children's book designer's bookshelves

When everything was in it’s place and the boxes were are gone. I toasted the new space with a glass of champagne. Here’s to dreams coming true!

Merit Award Winner

by abby on September 15, 2015 | Comment

AbbyDora Design award winning art
{I’m all smiles!}

Phew! What a festival weekend! It was rainy both days, but as you can see I’m all smiles after it was announced that I won the MERIT AWARD at this year’s Clothesline Festival. This award is only given to 10 jury selected artists out of 400+ artists. The award honors not 1 piece in particular, but the quality and style of my artwork overall. I feel so honored to be a recipient!

Thank you to everyone who braved the cold damp weather and visited the AbbyDora Design booth. I enjoyed meeting you and sharing stories.

I will be showing at 1 more holiday festival in Rochester this Fall and I will have more information in the next month.

Cheers!

It’s THIS Weekend

by abby on September 8, 2015 | Comment

colorful art festival booth of children's art from Abby Dening

It’s this weekend! It’s this weekend!
Will you stop into the AbbyDora Desgin booth? I hope so!

It’s time for the CLOTHESLINE FESTIVAL on the lovely grounds of Rochester’s Memorial Art Gallery.

Here are the details:

2015 Clothesline Festival

SATURDAY Sept 12th 10am-6pm

SUNDAY Sept 13th 10am-5pm.

Our booth is located in ZONE B (on the pavement near Goodman Street)

We’re located in BOOTH SPOT 305.

children's art prints and note cards {Look for our brightly colored banner!}

I always love talking with folks who come into our booth. I’m excited to again have a booth packed with:

colorful children’s artwork

high-quality digital watercolor prints

greeting cards & card sets

illustrated children’s books by me

inspirational small prints

AND…

photo of blank page notebooks created by Abby Dening
{Our newest product}

Notebooks!

These notebooks are just the right size for capturing thoughts on the go, journaling, sketching, and anything else you might want to put down on paper without a cumbersome large notepad.

There’s something for every age in our booth! (big smile).

I look forward to seeing you this weekend.

Golden Legacy is Filled With Color

by abby on January 9, 2015 | Comment

children's illustration art show at Memorial art gallery
{I’m all smiles at the Golden Legacy children’s illustration show!}

It’s a rare occurrence here in Rochester when an museum art show relates so directly to what I do and love. The opportunity wasn’t wasted! D and I ended the holiday season by seeing the exhibition: GOLDEN LEGACY, 65 years of Golden Books at the Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester. It’s a show celebrating the artists who illustrated the hugely popular Little Golden Books series, created by Random House in the 1940’s. By mass producing these smaller picture books, Random House made buying children’s books more affordable and gave greater access to good quality stories and illustrations.

illustration from Little Boy with BIg Horn, 1950
{It was thrilling to see the actual pieces of artwork from the books}

D and I went to see the show on a Saturday afternoon and it was refreshing to see the museum humming with activity. Old and young were enjoying the picture book framed artwork! There were many moments of “OH, I remember this!” from myself and others around me. The museum had even set of reading nooks in several spots through the gallery where they placed a cozy love seat and a bookshelf with donated Little Golden Books. This show received over 600 donated books!

Sadly, photos were not allowed inside the exhibition. But let me tell you that the colors of the artwork were very vibrant and made me giddy! It was very interesting to notice that most of the illustrators used gouache and watercolor for their art (just like me).

Although I can’t show you photographs of the hanging art I can show you samples of work from a few of my favorite artists we saw by sharing pages from this book:

Everything I Need to Know I learned from a LIttle Golden BOok

D and I saw illustrations from Tibor Gergely and Mary Blair,

Mary Blair I can Fly
{Tibor Gergely left and Mary Blair right}

JP Miller and Aurelius Battaglia,

JPMiller
{JP Miller left and Battaglia right}

and finally we saw a illustrations by Richard Scarry’s from Chicken Little !

RichardScary { a spread from CHICKEN LITTLE illustrated by Richard Scarry, 1960}

I’m not sure if this show is traveling around (I hope it is), so keep your eyes out for it in your neck of the woods. It’s worth seeing!

Do you have a memory about or favorite Little Golden Book?

Holiday Penguins and RIT Art Fair

by abby on December 9, 2014 | Comment

Holiday Penguins
{revamped Holiday Penguin illustration}

D and I recently got our Christmas tree and I was inspired to revise my original Penguin illustration of my 3 friends decorating their own Xmas tree. I’ve been working alot lately on digital painting with my design and teaching, so I’ve applied these skills to my own artwork. The base is still my watercolor painting, but I’ve added more color washes and a great little digital sketch line. I really LOVE the feel! Maybe this is my new working method for the new year? Ohhh, it’s exciting.

In other news…..the RIT Winter Craft & Art Fair is happening this FRIDAY DECEMBER 12th in the SAU on RIT’s campus from 9am-4pm. I hope that if you are in the area, you’ll stop by my table and say hello! I’ll have matted children’s artwork and holiday cards. I’ll also have a special sale happening too, but you’re gonna have to come by my table to find out what!

How’s your holiday month going?

It’s Festival Time

by abby on November 18, 2014 | Comment

photo of room filled with adults and children at the author and illustrator signing room
{A packed afternoon at Rochester’s Children’s Book Festival!}

Most of the year, my industry of children’s publishers, authors, and illustrators seems far away in hubs like New York City. But once a year here in Rochester the children’s book industry comes to us at Rochester’s Children’s Book Festival.

stacks of very pink Fancy Nancy books

And what a festival it was! I was very happy to see the festival brimming with energy of parents, children, and teachers all eager to buy books, meet authors and illustrators, and learn about the craft of children’s books. There were several well known authors attending this year too, like Jane O’Connor the author of the Fancy Nancy series.

The head liners were fun, but I had my own agenda at the festival. There were a couple of ladies in particular that I was thrilled to meet.

chidren's book authors signing books at Rochester Book Festival

The first was Kate Messner the author of Over and Under the Snow. I snapped a few photos just after I had a fun quick conversation with her. She’s the one with the glasses on in the black shirt on the left.

picture book by Kate Messner and illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal
{Kate signed my book with this little extra bit: “Look, Listen, and WONDER…”}

Over and Under the Snow is illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal. I blogged about this book a few years ago when it came out. It’s a beautiful book that blends non-fiction facts about animals hibernating with a fictional story. I felt great that I had the opportunity to tell her how much I enjoyed both the story and the beautiful book design. She said the her publisher Chronicle Books was a dream to work with. I’d love to be able to design a book for them one day!

Elizabeth Bluemle signing her picture book Tap Tap Boom Boom

My other author that I was looking for was Elizabeth Bluemle. I dropped in on a talk she was giving on how to create fun and smooth rhyme in picture books. She gave several inspiring tips. I like the one that if you get stuck, walk in the rhythm of your text. Not only is this a change of scene, but it also helps you to internalize your text and the pacing of it. Love it!

I bought her recent picture book, Tap Tap Boom Boom, not only for the great text, but again for the fabulous book design of it. I will be blogging more about this book VERY soon. It’s a great read aloud!

photo of lady pug sitting

And finally, I met a new friend at the festival on Saturday. Her name is Lacy and she is a HUGE fan of picture books. She told me her favorite book was, Harry the Dirty Dog and she especially loves to watch Betty White read it aloud. hehe!

Do you have an author you’d love to meet? Share it with me!

Holiday Happenings

by abby on December 19, 2013 | Comment

photo of antique snowman sculpture as artist
{My new friend!}

It’s been a busy around here wrapping up 2013 and rolling into the holidays. My apologies for letting so many days slip by without any postings. My personal motto is that life should be lived first! And then I can blog about it. (smiling)

Our home is looking very festive and cozy. I’m highlighting several touches of red around the house. The beautiful snowman sculpture is a gift from my parents. This snowman sat on our mantle growing up and finally he joins me in my own home. I can’t tell you how much I love him. He sits right next to my mason jar of my grandmother’s brushes, too. Just perfect.

photo of christmas tree with dreidel cookie cutter ornament

Our tree is now up and adorned with a popcorn garland (yes, I string the popcorn and watch BBC mysteries—SO. MUCH. FUN!) and decorated with our collection of ornaments. Special thanks to the elf who flew up and helped D and I.

photo of holly and evergreens on door

While collecting our tree, I grabbed a few remnant branches of various evergreen trees and a holly branch for that touch of red. I pulled it all together, added a little red ribbon, and voila—a festive holiday door ornament!

photo of cookie gift bags with snowflake tags

And of course it’s not Christmas without…COOKIES! It’s a tradition since I moved up here to give a little bag of home baked goodies to our local friends and neighbors. Cookies never go out of style and they are always the right size, right?!

Well, I think D and I are ready to enjoy Christmas and New Year’s Eve. I’m officially giving myself a little R&R for the next 2 weeks. I need a little quiet time to reflect on 2013 and think about all the goals for 2014. I will see you in January!

Wishing you a wonderful holiday—filled with lots of laughter and smiles.