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Art Girls’ Road Trip

by abby on March 8, 2016 | Comment

Eric Carle workshop
{Painted tissue paper that our workshop created}

Artists need artists. Last weekend, myself and 3 other wonderful creative ladies took a road trip to The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Northhampton, MA!

Our goal was 2-fold: The first goal was to visit this museum whose intention is to share the beauty of the artwork of illustrators of children’s picture books. Carle and his late wife, Barbara, said it best themselves with this quote on the wall when you enter the museum:quote from Eric carle at Picture Book art museum

The second goal of this trip was to take a workshop where we would practice the technique of painting tissue paper to create our own textures in the same manner that Carle uses to create his own art. The art studio was a lovely room with an entire wall of windows. Half the room is open for children and families to come and create artwork all day long. We had a few short leg visitors wander over to our painting tables while we created.

Art Studio at Eric Carle Picture book art museum
{The wall of natural light in the art studio}

art studio
{I adore the twig alphabet in the art studio}

We had an hour to create several patterned tissue papers. There were no rules, it all happened quickly. The decision making of layering the paint was a bit intense, but also therapeutic since you had to make the choice and then move on. We evened listened to classical music, just as Carle does when he creates.

Once the papers were all dry, each participant selected 9 pieces of textured paper to create a hanging window shade. Here are my papers and my final window shade:

pained paper from workshop at Eric Carle Museum

Abby with her painted paper window shade

After the workshop we toured the gallery which had a fun A to Z exhibit of Eric Carle’s collages that described his life. Did you know he as born in Syracuse, NY?! I enjoyed seeing the illustrations in person. In books there’s a separation from the art, but when viewing the art in a gallery you could see the human hand again in the illustrations.

Abby and Kari
{As you can see, my friend, Kari, and I are all smiles!}

Overall, I was delighted to visit this museum and check The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art off my “to-do trip list”. I know I shall be back this Fall for the Robert McCloskey show (think Make Way for Ducklings). It was a happy, art filled road trip with a great group of gals.

The Pages Between Us-Part 2

by abby on February 9, 2016 | Comment

interior book design and artwork by Abby Dening
{I designed the interior of this book and created the interior artwork, too}

It’s today! It’s today! The Pages Between Us officially publishes today. Eeeeee!

This morning, I headed over to my local bookstore and found it on the shelf. It also never gets old to actually hold a book in my hand that I helped to create. It feels like seeing an old friend after several months.

This publication is even more special because I was able to contribute illustrations within the book. Wanna sneak peek at the inside? You got it!

The book design is a combination of set novel type and handwriting along with taped in pieces of paper. Like this:

InteriorSpread-1

Along with those notes and narrative text the girls have doodled in the book. Here are some of my interior illustrations:

interior art for The Pages Between Us

interior line drawing in middle grade novel by Abby Dening

There are more illustrations, but I do want you to pick up the book and see the rest in context. I think it’s a good sign when your own artwork still makes you grin.

I’m so proud of the design and artwork in this middle grade novel. I was even genuinely surprised that during a book review I was mentioned by name!

I hope you will take a look at the book for yourself. It would make a wonderful gift for a girl from 7-12 years old.

Cheers!

The Pages Between Us

by abby on January 25, 2016 | Comment

book design and interior illustrations by Abby Dening {I designed this book and created the interior illustrations}

I couldn’t contain myself any longer. I have something fun to share with you today! In about 2 weeks, a book that I designed AND (AND!) illustrated is being published by HarperCollins! The book is a middle grade novel, called: The Pages Between Us.

This book is so cool in story and in book concept. The narrative is told through a collection of notes and doodles between 2 best friends, Piper and Olivia, as if they were written in a notebook the girls pass back and forth. There are handwritten text elements and pages of: flyers, homework assignments, notes to boys, invitations that appear to be taped into this notebook. It’s a very visual novel! The big question of the story is if these two friends can wade through the tricky waters of 6th grade without loosing their friendship.

This project was a challenge, but I was am so proud of the final result. I designed the interior layout, designed and created all the extra taped in paper elements, AND illustrated the 2 girls’ drawings. What fun it was to sculpt this book!

The Pages Between Us officially publishes on 2/9/16. As soon as it’s out in print and ebook I’ll share some interior images of the book with you, too. I hope you will see this book for yourself!

New art that’s yellow and noisy

by abby on July 31, 2015 | Comment

yellow ducks

Hi Friends! This is what is sitting on my drawing table, right now. Ta-da! A new children’s illustration of adorable six yellow ducklings. My inspiration was from the pre-school song “Six Little Ducks”. Do you know it? But the one little duck with the feather on his back, he led the others with a Quack, Quack Quack. Does that help? It was a favorite of mine when I was a little girl.

I’m letting the painting sit for a day, to see how it settles with me. I’m really loving it at the moment and it’s motivating me to continue with my paints! The Ducklings will be one of the new paintings debuting at Clothesline festival THIS September in Rochester, NY and will also be available in my Etsy Shoppe. I’ll have my booth details in the coming weeks.

New Artwork to Brighten Your Day

by abby on January 13, 2015 | Comment

AbbyDora Design watercolor of smiling sun
{Can you feel the warmth?!}

It snowed all day yesterday. It seems I only can see white and black out of my studio window. I have to say, I’m getting rather good at seeing the many shades of gray of the sky. You know what I did to cope? I created colorful sunshine art!

AbbyDora Design watercolor of yawning sun, smiling sun, sleeping sun
{My new personified sun artwork}

Ahhh, doesn’t just looking at them make you feel warmer? The left depicts a yawning morning sun. The middle shows a smiling strong midday sun, and the right shows a sleepy setting sun. I really loved playing around with the facial expressions. I drew my options on tracing paper and brainstormed what I wanted each sun to express.

nursery room sunshine artwork
{The morning sun}

The final art as a digital watercolor print is now available in MY SHOP! The sun artwork comes centered on an 8.5″ x 11″ sheet of digital watercolor paper. It looks and feels like a watercolor painting.

Oh AND a little heads up:
This Friday I’m have planning on shaking up more of the winter monotony with a JANUARY SALE! All the details to come on Friday’s blog. If you want to preview the art options click here.

How are you coping with the winter weather?

Turtle-Themed Name Plate

by abby on November 21, 2013 | Comment

TurtlePond_blog
{new turtle art!}

Wow, are your days flying by like mine are? November is becoming a blur of RIT lessons, book design, paint washes, and wedding details. Before too much more of November disappears I did want to share with you the final painting of my turtle commission. Ta-da! Do I see a grin on your face? I know those turtles make me smile!

This turtle painting was designed to be used as a child’s name plate. I’m currently showing the painting without the name, but I can easily add in text onto the old wooden sign. It would be a wonderful new baby gift or personalized holiday gift.

If you are interested in ordering a personalized turtle print today please contact me. Otherwise, I’ll have it available in my Etsy shop before Thanksgiving.

My holiday to-do list just keeps growing. How are you handling the busy pre-holidays?

Turtles Playing in a Pond

by abby on October 31, 2013 | Comment

pencil drawing of 3 turtles in pond setting
{Finalized turtle sketch}

Happy Friday! Today you are getting another sneak peak at my drawing table. I showed you my initial sketches for this turtle name plate project earlier and now here’s a finalized version.

Since this is a custom name plate painting, I wanted the name to fit into the narrative of the turtle pond scene. I thought an old wooden sign might just do the trick! The sign gives enough importance to the text, but leaves enough room for my 3 little turtles.

The next step is to bring this painting to life with rich bright colors. I know what I’m doing over the weekend. Do you have any plans?

Turtle Sketches

by abby on October 18, 2013 | Comment

pencil drawing of 3 turtles in pond
{Sketch for an upcoming project}

Happy Friday! We are having a BEAUTIFUL fall day today and it’s making me all excited for apple cider and pumpkins. Maybe soon D and I will be able to get a hay ride out to a pumpkin patch?!

Today, I thought I’d share with you a few sketches of the next project I’m currently working on. It will be for a custom watercolor/gouache painting of 3 turtles hanging around a pond.

sketch of turtles playing in pond
{Another idea}

I’m still tweaking and working on getting the composition just right, but already I do like the personalities of these turtles. Stay tuned for more!

Are you doing any Fall-themed activities this weekend?

New Ocean Sketch

by abby on September 27, 2013 | Comment

sketch of girls exploring a tide pool with mermaid behind rocks
{sketch for a new series}

Happy Friday everyone! In between teaching and lesson planning I’m still fitting in time to create new artwork and even some book design. It’s definitely been a busy Fall so far! Today, I wanted to share a sketch from a new series featuring 2 sisters having a few ocean adventures. In this scene, the girls are exploring a tide pool and came upon a feisty crab. Does it make you smile too?

There are 2 more illustrations in this series, which will be a surprise until they are completed. The illustrations will be a combination of watercolor and gouache painting with collage backgrounds. The overall look will be very similar to my Hot Air Balloon illustration.

After a day of interacting with students and being on a lively campus, it feels restorative to sit down at my drawing table and quietly create my art. When you get into an “art zone” you loose track of time and it’s almost meditative. I’ve learned to appreciate my drawing table time even more now.

My birthday is next Frdaiy an D has something up his sleeve this weekend for us to celebrate. He’s being crafty and keeping it a secret. I do love surprises!

I hope you have a great weekend!

New Children’s Art in Etsy Shoppe

by abby on September 16, 2013 | Comment

collage of children's artwork from Abby Kuperstock

I’m happy to announce that finally the wait is over and that starting today all my new summer watercolor paintings are now available as fine art digital watercolor prints in my Etsy Shoppe! Now is the time to add color to that wall (huge smile).

To those who visited my art festival booths over the summer, you now can find prints of the: ABC Giraffe, Animal Parade, Hot Air Balloon Adventure, Brooklyn Bunny, and the 5 Speckled Frogs in my shoppe. And thanks to an Etsy listing upgrade, I can now offer even more print sizes and price points than ever before within a single listing. Thank you Etsy!

To see the print size options, simply click on the size drop down menu within the selected item. I offer a full range of sizes from small 5″x 7″ images all the way up to large 11″ x 14″ images. I’m sure there’s a size for you! I encourage everyone to take a moment and head on over to my store to see what’s new and check out my Halloween and Thanksgiving cards and prints as well. Fall is starting to be in the air and it’s time to start thinking holidays. I’ll be adding even more holiday paper fun in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

Happy Shopping!