Facebook Icon for AbbyDora Design






April Art Show and Tell

by abby on April 25, 2013 | Comment

in progress watercolor children's art

Hooray for Friday and hooray for Spring sunshine here in upstate New York! It’s been a busy week getting back into the swing of book design and painting. My plan today is to have a great day at my drawing table working on the Birthday Parade illustration I’ve started. Cute, right? I’m working a little larger than I have recently to see if I can create great brush marks and washes in the painting. I’m letting the creativity flow!

Oh and I thought I’d give you a little peak into my sketchbook too. I usually keep my sketchbook close to my heart. Sketchbooks are visual journals for me. I write and draw in mine. Some of my sketch pages are for my eyes only and others can be shared with the world. Here are a couple that I do want to share:

bear rabbit characters
{Animal characters—some of which ended up in the new painting on working on}

little girl wish print sketches
{“My Wishes” concept sketches. More to come on this project!}

This weekend, I’m celebrating Spring weather by watching some baseball with D (gooooo Mets!) and maybe even grilling out on our porch! Whoo-ooo!

What are you up to this weekend?

Like Mother, Like Daughter

by abby on April 22, 2013 | Comment

white ceramic bowl with home spelled out

I’ve been away visiting my parents for an extended weekend. It was a lovely retreat from my day to day hussle of running my own business. I got to lounge on comfy couches reading books and I even fell asleep in the sunshine on the living room carpet (I know I’m like a cat!) .

vase of yellow tulips
{Yellow tulips on the kitchen table} Bright Blue Glass Pitcher and bowl of fruit
{Bowls of fruit under the kitchen window}

I love this wreath!

yellow forsythia wreath on front door
{The front door}

I found typography too in the house…
rock with word laugh etched into it

Perhaps having a daughter who loves letters inspired some decorating?

white wooden block spell out family in living room

Thanks to my little “time-out” I feel refreshed and ready to get back to book design and painting this week. I hope you too are feeling good and have a great week!

What Spring colors are in your house?

Un Show Voting

by abby on April 15, 2013 | Comment

blue and purple un show logo

vote for cards at UN show

Thank you for all your help with the Minted Competition. I’m still waiting to hear the results. In the meantime I’ve entered into another card competition! This one is called the UN Show It celebrates design on all sorts of uncoated paper. It’s sponsored by HOW MAGAZINE and NEENAH PAPER.

The UnShow web site is now open for public voting for the top 25 entries in each category. These entries will be submitted to a selected jury of design judges. Two winners in each category will receive $500 in cash and have their image published in HOW Magazine. Pretty darn cool, right?!

I need your help and vote again to make my dreams come true and be a winner! I’ve entered 2 of my new baby cards into the invitation/cards category. Here they are:

chevron cutie pie and sweet pie cards
{New Baby Chevron card set}

card with illustrations of flying bees
{New Baby Bumble Bee card}

Voting couldn’t be easier this time around.

1. Click here to be brought to the voting page for my cards.
2. You will see my 2 card entries. Click on each voting button underneath each card.
3. Smile! You are done and have helped me tremendously. Thank you.

Please pass this on to family and friends to spread the word.
Voting ends at midnight on April 19th!

New April Drawings

by abby on April 12, 2013 | Comment

children's illustration sketches on table

In between book design and introducing myself to new publishers across the country I was able to find time to sit down and draw this week. It was an afternoon of explosive creativity! I was able to compose 3 new ideas for 3 new watercolor illustrations. I think that’s the most I’ve ever done in one sitting. I love that now my drawing table is actually covered in new drawings. Yay!

sketch of children's illustration

My head is already bubbling with new ideas for even more paintings. I seem to hibernate a little in winter, but I’m so excited to be feeling the flow all this creative energy again. I’m pushing myself to have several new painting and prints for Rochester’s summer art festivals.

Hope you have a great weekend!

Rainy Day Thoughts

by abby on April 9, 2013 | Comment

handlettering print from the wheatfield
{print from the wheatfield}

After several weeks of “Second Winter” Rochester is now enjoying Spring-like weather. Yay! What does that mean exactly? Well, the cynical side of me says, “That means it’s now gray and rainy out.” But I’m really not complaining, since it’s not snow! Honest!

without the rain there would be no rainbow
{quote from the The Swell Life }

Are you too are having a rainy day? To bring a little color to this Tuesday, I thought I’d share with you a couple great Pinerest Art Quotes I found this morning talking about the brighter side of April rain.

Smile, color is on its way!

My Ideal Bookshelf

by abby on April 4, 2013 | Comment

my idea bookshelf cover

GIFT ALERT! With Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and graduations coming up in the next few months I thought I’d share with you a REALLY NEAT book. It’s a book about books (huge grin). It’s called MY IDEAL BOOKSHELF and in it more than 100 leading cultural figures (artists, designers, chefs, writers, musicians—you get the idea) share the books that have resonated with them. Some of the titles on their bookshelves have been from childhood and other are recent finds.

Each interview is paired with an illustration by Jane Mount of the colorful book spines and even personal objects found amongst the books. I found it amazing that many of us can names specific titles that we still can recall how the story shaped our thinking and made a mark in our hearts.

Once you open this book you cannot help but pose the same question to yourself. What would be on YOUR ideal bookshelf? Well, I thought it would be fun if I shared my own bookshelf illustration that answers the question. My shelf is a mixture of children’s books and “adult” books. I also tend to have several fun “nick-nacks” hanging out with my books.

watercolor painting of book spines

Of course your shelf can change too. This is a snap shot of my bookshelf for today, but perhaps tomorrow it would be a little different. For instance, I might add in The Mists of Avalon when I’m channeling my inner goddess or I may rotate in The Omnivore Dilemma since it has truly affected how I think about food and cooking.

My IDEAL BOOKSHELF would even be a fun book for a book club meeting. In fact, at the back of the book Jane has supplied a template for you to add in your own titles. How much fun would it be to see the drawings of a group’s bookshelves!

MY IDEAL BOOKSHELF can be described as a love letter to books and would be a winner of a gift for any book lover.

So, what would be on your bookshelf? Post comments—I’d love to hear what people think!

New Art for a New Baby

by abby on April 1, 2013 | Comment

Mother and Daughter Rabbit star gazing outside

It’s Spring and I’ve hit favorite time to paint and create. I wanted to share with you one of my newest paintings! I call it Star Gazing and it features a Mother Rabbit and her Little Daughter snuggled together on a hill side looking up into the star-filled night sky.

I unveiled this painting to the public at RIT’s Spring Craft Festival 2 weeks ago and the reactions from customers visiting the AbbyDora Design table was instantaneous. I heard a lot of “Awwwwwwww” and “That’s so sweet”. It’s music to my ears! I think one of my goals with my art is to really channel the emotional connection between the viewer and the art. I know my favorite pieces are the ones where you can connect to them with your own life and memories.

The Star Gazing print is now available in my Etsy Shop. The original painting which is framed in a natural wood frame is also available for purchase. If you you would like more information about the framed painting please send me an email.

It’s the last week of voting!
Dove Holiday Card
I’ve entered into a holiday card contest at minted.com and I NEED YOUR VOTE TO WIN to have my Flying Dove card showcased on minted.com.


1. Click on the Dove Card above. It will take you to the the Flying Dove voting page.
2. Rank my card.
3. Follow the prompts to create a minted.com account. This occurs because to have YOUR VOTE COUNT you will must create a minted account. It’s quick and easy.

That’s it! Thank you!