Mothers Day is fast upon us and I thought I would use it for a little inspiration. I took a few hours to draw and sketch a few Mothers Day cards. I used inspiration from my own mother to design these. My mom has an affinity for flowers, comfort, and the outdoors, so while I was illustrating I used a few of our own little inside secrets to craft these cards.
My mom was basicly a single Mom but boy was she a strong, powerful, bright, and beautiful woman. We didnt have alot of money and moved alot while I was a child but Mom always made sure we had what we needed. She taught me to use the things we had, be innovative, and solve problems using things around the house. To me, my mom really was a super mom! Instead of the usual Super Mom I used Super Mum and included an illustration of a flowering mum.
See more on Etsy >>
I LOVE YOU MORE…
While growing up my mother and I always had this ongoing banter of who loves who more. She would always say, “I love you kiddo!” and I would respond, “No, I love you more!” and this could go on and on. Its a memory of my mom that I will always treasure. In this Illustration I used some simple typography and included some hand stiching to give it some dimension. I also created an envelope out of some old craft paper and magazine clippings, complete with a sewn heart to add some flair.
See more on Etsy >>
YOU MAKE SWEATPANTS LOOK FABULOUS!
Growing up my mom always rocked out a comfy pair of sweatpants after work, or even to the super market. She was always so busy making things happen she always sacrificed expensive or new clothes for something her children needed. Instead of buying or adding to her wardrobe she always made sure we got that new softball glove, summer camp expereience, or tennis shoes. Thats a true mom and I am so thankful for the sacrifice!
See more on Etsy >>
This weeks Wordplay Thursdays project comes from an effort to recycle all those old pickle, spagetti, and glass artichoke jars that pile up in your recycle bin.
What can you do with them besides take them to the recycle plant? I finally figured it out! For this project I used a large empty pickle jar (I love pickles!) and recycled it into a fantastic vase. You could use it for flowers, art supplies, or even for a herb planter. Recycling like this really does make sense. Lets say you need a candle holder for a last minute dinner party but you cant find one, this allows you to whip a few up in no time! I really love the way this project turned out and I now have a vase for my office.
For this vase’s wordplay I decided on FreshyFresh. The inspiration came from the Cottonelle ad campaign
. I like the word and thought it was perfect when referring to recycling. lol
Feel free to purchase this vase or order one customized with whatever wording you want. Visit my studio on Etsy
and order a vase for your mother for mothers day.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
Blue Painters Tape
Cotton Thread or Butchers Thread
Nail Polish Remover
Paper & Pencil
HOW TO DO IT:
First clean, wash and remove any stickers that may be on the glass. You can make a home made goo gone yourself using baking soda and vegetable oil. All you have to do is pour a tablespoon of oil in a small dish and keep adding baking soda until its a thick paste. It takes the stickers off no problem!
I found a great tutorial from a fellow blogger at Crafty Scrappy Happy on how to easily cut glass. Take a look at her directions
, she even makes great suggestions for smaller glass jars and wine bottles. Have you ever needed a candle holder at the last minute and couldnt find one? Well I have and its super annoying. This solves that! After your jar is cut and the edges sanded down make sure its washed well and free of any finger prints.
Draw your design on a piece of paper and set aside. Put on your rubber gloves, and cover the jar with your blue tape where the design will go. Make sure to decide which areas will be the negative areas (etched) and the positive areas (clear glass). Tape your design to the glass tightly. Cut on the lines of your design with your exacto blade. Make sure you take your time, dont hurry this part. Be careful not to pull or push the blue tape.
Make sure your tape is securly stuck to the vase then follow the directions on the etching cream. I left the etching cream on for nearly an hour just to be sure it got everything. I know this from doing 10 custom etched beer steins for the guys in our wedding. LOL.
With your gloves on rinse it well then remove your tape and enjoy your fabulous recycled vase!
Nuh Nuh Nuh Nuh Type Mobile! Today is Thursday…I love Thursdays!
This was actually supposed to be last weeks project but sometimes life just gets crammed full of stuff. Today I am shareing with you a type mobile crafted out of old magazines, card stock, found branches, and fishing line. I thought it would be perfect for a nursery or even a fun office. I didnt have a nursery to take photos of it in so I thought I should take pictures of it outside.
Here is a picture of a nursery that I absolutly love! Its from one of my favorite websites for inspiration and interior design. Apartment Therapy
is a great source for Inspiration, Midcentury Modern Design, Tutorials, and awesome Home Tours! Someday when we finally find our “forever place” I hope to have my home toured by Apartment Therapy. A girl can dream right! Anyway this nursery would be the perfect setting for this typography inspired mobile. I thought it would be perfect for a wall hanging too, either way it deserves a space that will help it shine.
Heather Hazard Design is slowly becoming Little Bunker Studio and I am at the research and discovery phase of the design process. Currently I am trying to figure out exactly who my target market is. When rebranding your business you might consider a few things before taking the rebranding plunge. You wouldnt jump in the ocean without first knowing how to swim right? I do recommend that before you even try to figure out who your target market is you redefine your product or service so that your not trying to be everything to everyone. After you specialize, then its time to begin discovering your target audience.
I do this by setting up fake “user” profiles, complete with a picture I think represents the person, and I give them a name. I will share with you my most recent exercise for finding my target market at the end of this exercise.
1. PROFILING IS NOT JUST FOR CRIMINALS – Defining a demographic profile for your target audience.
Whats the age range of the people/business that need your service/product?
Marital Status -
Are they single, taken, married?
What level of education did they achieve or conquer?
What income bracket are they in? Do they eat ramen or gourmet?
Which gender is most interested in your service or product?
2. DISCOVER WHAT THEY VALUE – You could call this pscyhographics but thats a long word. Essentially, you want to determine how your product or service will fit into their lifestyle.
Are they conservative, exciting, trendy, frugal?
How do they find their information? Online, newspaper, family, books or television?
Activities and Interests -
What do they fill their time with outside of work? Shopping, Fitness, Cooking, Wine Tasting, Sports, Reading, etc?
Attitudes and Beliefs -
Enviromentalist, Religious, Politician, Security Conscious, etc.
Responder or Follower -
Do they try new products first or wait to read reviews?
3. HOW THEY MOVE – Figure out how you want them to interact with your product or service.
Need or Want -
Is your product or service a need (food, shelter, water) or a want item (Prada shoes, perfume, Nikes, or Rolls Royce)?
How will your target audience benefit from your service or product?
What might they like or dislike about your product or service?
Create a target audience profile. Using your answers from the above questions create a few prototype people that would fit your target market. Give him or her a name, an age, and a job. Do they have a family or kids, and how many? What are their interests? What kind of attributes might they have? Where might he/she live? Think about them like your putting together a biography for a church bulletin only a bit more detailed. Your putting together this profile so that when you go to advertise or market your company you have an image and description of the person your marketing too or you can hire someone like me to do it for you.
Download Little Bunker Studio’s Target Audience Profile HERE
Working with what I have at home is proving to be more difficult than I thought! It is however making me think differently about the objects I have in my home. Take for example these potato prints, using food to create typography brings me back to my college days. Thinking this way again can only help me when working on client projects. I just love this stuff! Check out this print I created using potatoes.
I remember making these when I was a child, the sad thing about it is I remember never being happy with how they turned out. They usually ended up looking like blobs of paint. I think my craftsmanship has gotten better since I was 7. Good thing because business wouldn’t be so great if it weren’t for my craft. Anyway thanks to some brain storming with my mom about what this weeks Wordplay Thursday would be we decided on an potato print alphabet. I thought it would be a perfect piece of art for a nursery or just to hang in my office. Take a look below at the instructions and you too can create a piece of art from goodies in your kitchen.
You can purchase this print for your nursery or office on Etsy. >>>BUY NOW<<<
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
Whatever your printing on (paper, fabric, clothing, etc.)
I used a Speedball Cutter
Ink Jet Printer for designs or just draw them onto the potato
cutting board from your kitchen
waterbased ink or paint
1. Either go on your computer and create your word or alphabet and print using an ink jet printer or sketch out your type on a piece of paper.
2. Cut a potato in half and take 1 or 2 letters and place backwards on the potato. Remember to do this or when you print your potato the letters will be backwards. Let the paper sit on the potato for a second to let the ink bleed onto it. Remove the paper and you should see an outline of what you need to carve.
3. Carve your letter or design and wrap the potato in saran wrap and set it aside as you work on your next letter or design.
3. After you have completed carving your letters mix your paints and play around with what look you like best. I painted my ink onto the potato with an old paint brush to create a more clean print. Sometimes I like the look of a rough print with the texture of the potato. In my case I wanted a somewhat clean look. You decide on this one. Do them one by one until you finish. Make sure you keep them unwrapped when your at this point or the potatoes seem to keep oozing with starch.
4. When your finished with your print dont forget to sign, number, and title your art. Frame it and hang it wherever you think it should go.
If you decided to try to create your own potato print please share and comment on this post.
Please include a link to a photo of your art, I love seeing new creations!
I had a hard time figuring out what craft to do this week. Fortunatly while I was making eggs for breakfast this morning I had a great Eggdea! Yes, thats my made up word for ideas you come up with while your making breakfast. This weeks WordPlay Thursday has to do with decorating easter eggs!
I have always wanted to try this old technique that hails all the way from Lithuania. In case you forget your high school geography its a little country in Europe, kind of near Poland. Despite the fact that the country is so far away and so foreign to me in my life I have always been so intrigued by their easter egg decorations. They are spectacular and so very intricate and beautiful I have to attempt one myself. This name of this technique that I have fallen in love with is called Drsanka. Im not even sure how to pronounce it, but the name is even enticing.
I figured I should finally try and do it myself. The technique is rather simple in thought. Slovenian easter eggs made with this technique display a wide array of designs, but are made by finely scratching the surface of a colored egg. Using a sharp instrument to carefully scratch the design onto the egg and making sure to keep a steady and soft hand seems like a daunting task. But luckily for me I am always up for long and grueling projects that require patience and bit of sweat! I want to share with you what I have learned and experienced while trying this cool technique.
First I wanted to share an artist who has pushed the art of Drsanka and created something I would love to have in my own home art collection. While researching this technique I came across an artist named Franc Grom. Hes a 72 year old artist from Slovenia. Grom has taken this technique a step further and drills very intricate designs. The outcome is very similar to a Lite Brite if anyone remembers those. They are truly beautiful pieces of art.
You can purchase my egg creations on Etsy! >>BUY NOW<<
What you will need:
Egg dye of your choice
Sharp instrument (I used an exacto dull exacto blade)
1. Start by cleaning the eggs, poke holes in the top and bottom of the shell, and blow out the liquid. *I had a few people ask me how I did this so I figured I should share! First I used eggs from organic free range chickens. I always found the shells to be harder than others. I used an old pin from my sewing kit and the bottom of a glass to lightly create a hole in the top and bottom. I then used my dull exacto blade and slowly began to drill the hole on one end. Then using the hat pin lightly scrape and scramble the inside. From the end with the smaller hole begin blowing the egg contents out the bottom. You have to be very patient while doing this, and you might get a slight headache. You know the feeling when you try and blow up balloons to fast? Anyway when you get all of the contents out of the egg soak the shells in water for a few hours. They float so you might have to weigh them down a bit. Make sure they are really dry before you dye them.
2. Dye your eggs using your preferred method. I dyed mine with food coloring because thats all I had on hand. Most boxes of food coloring will have directions on the back. You can also use natural methods for dying eggs using vegetables
. Make sure your eggs are as dark and vibrant as you can make them. Also since the eggs are empty they will tend to sit on the top of the liquid. Make sure to sink them to the bottom with something heavy, but make sure you dont over flow your dye.
3. Make sure your eggs are dry on the inside and out!
3. Decide what design you want to put on your eggs. It helps to kind of sketch what your thinking before you start. After you have your design picked out lightly sketch it on the egg.
4. Scratch away using your sharp instrument. I found that a dull exacto blade works the best.
I love bubbles! Lots and lots of bubbles! I dont know about you but I hate soda, mostly because of all the extra additives and sugar. Talk about drinking your calories. I have recently decided to cut out sugar from my diet, except for a very occasional scoop of pistachio ice cream from Ben N Jerrys. I know I just cant help myself its just sooo good! Anyway when I did drink soda I always found myself drinking Vernors. Its my absolute favorite pop and its a Michigan thing which I think is great. One day I had the idea of making a low fat alternative.
I call it a Lime Ginger Spritzer and its my drink of choice while Im slaving away on design projects. I find that when I have a glass of this sitting next to me at my desk I tend to drink more water throughout the day. We all know that were supposed to drink 8-12 glasses of water a day…how many designers actually do? I thought I should probably share it with you. This recipe is easily changed depending on your mood. Sometimes I add a handful of fresh muttled raspberries or strawberries. You can even use a splash of orange juice or fresh grapefruit juice to mix things up.
Freshly Ground Ginger (1/2 tablespoon)
2-3 slices of lime
1/4 tsp Stevia sweetener
6-8 oz of Seltzer Water
Here’s How It Goes:
Cut and freshly grate your ginger. If you dont have a cheese greater just mince the ginger. Slice your lime into semi thin slices and squeeze 1 slice into your glass.
Take your Stevia sweetener and whisk with drizzle of water. Pour into your glass over you lime. Add your ginger and add your ice.
Add your seltzer water and lightly mix.
This drink is as easy as it gets and its so refreshing! You can continue to refill your glass with new seltzer water and bit of your Stevia Sweetener. I keep a bit of grated ginger and sliced up lime in my fridge so its easier to make when I am busy designing. Let me know what you think and any additions or experiments in the comments!
After a discussion with my dear Mom yesterday, we decided we missed each other and we needed a way to spend some time together. She is living in Michigan and I am well, kind of a nomad and being this far apart really sucks! I am not afraid to admit that sometimes I just need “Mommy Time”. Don’t laugh, just go call your mom.
Since were so far apart we decided a craft project and skype date would be the best way to feel closer. So, my mom and I will be posting craft projects on Facebook at Hazard’s Creative Crafts
. Every Thursday I will post one of my creations and my Mom will be posting every monday. The only rule we have is that you have to use something you already own or have in your house. We are believers in recycling and using what we have. This way it gets you thinking differently and helps push you creatively. You can however buy the essentials of crafting if you need to, which would include; glue, ink, paper, pencils, etc.
The artwork I created today is for sale on Etsy. Go check it out
, it would make a great housewarming gift!
Today, I am sharing with you an exploration with oil pastels.
I have had these pastels for a couple years and have never touched them. I met a wonderful artist last year at the Pajama Factory
in Williamsport, PA. I am sad that I don’t remember his name (I think it was Mark) but he created a few great illustrations using this method and I just loved them so I figured I would give it a try.
Things you will need:
Oil Pastels – Paper – Sharp Utensil or Scraping Tool – Masking Tape – Pencil – Ruler – Markers, Watercolor Paints, or Colored Pencils – Rubber Gloves
Take your paper and determine your finished art size. Use your masking take to mask the edges to give your piece a nice white border when your finished. This makes it easier to frame.
Figure out what your going to draw in your piece and set it aside.
Determine what main color you want for your piece. Also think about what color you would like to show through the areas that you scratch off. First, take the color or colors that you want to show through, and cover the entire image with either watercolor, markets or colored pencils. You want this layer to adhere and soak into the paper. Make sure if you use watercolor to let it dry completely.
Next you want to take your oil pastels and really coat the entire image area. Try and get it as thick as you can.
Now its time to create your artwork and scratch away the oil pastel until you see the paper or color below. Be creative with pattern, characters, typography, or illustrations. When your done remove the masking tape and frame.
I hope that you create something that your both proud of and excited to share! If you are please share it with me on Facebook at Heather Hazard Design
or Hazard’s Creative Crafts
For Christmas this year I asked for a trip to Vegas. Santa (My amazing husband) must really love me because I didn’t get coal in my stocking. Instead I got 4 nights in vegas with a couple of my dear friends. Most people know I am not the gambling type, I mean I could hardly bring myself to gamble more than 5 bucks at a time. All in all, I only gave the Casino’s $25 and I feel pretty darn good about that! I just dont get how people can really enjoy gambling all day. I would so rather be outside hiking, swimming, or drawing. Anyway, we had a fantastic time and I’m sharing with you my epic Christmas gift of 2013.
The first thing I did when I finally arrived at the hotel was order a cosmopolitan.
Who cares if its 11:00 in Las Vegas, back home its 2:00. I just couldn’t help myself and besides the last time I was in Vegas I was only 19. Don’t judge me…all I can say is wow does time fly! After we finished our cocktails and checked out our room at the Sams Town Casino we headed off to check out Fremont Street which is considered to be old Las Vegas. My friend Jeff said we had to check out the “Freemont Street Experience”
. The entire street is covered by an awning and every-night the lights of the Casinos are turned down and the likes of BonJovi, and American Freedom can be seen the entire way down. Its currently the worlds largest electric sign and its quite a feature. I do have to say that maybe they can design better graphics for the shows as I was pretty disappointed with the corny stock photos and movies. Fremont Street is still my favorite part of Las Vegas with its old school charm and vintage showgirls. I loved checking out all of the vintage signs and seeing all of the crazy people hanging out trying to make a living. I was in literal type heaven except it smelled like carnival food and liquor.
Who doesn’t love a good Transformers Costume!
This guy was pretty creative and fashioned this Bumble Bee costume out of a kids car. Its quite epic and even includes working lights. I had to give the guy a couple bucks for his creative effort. You wouldn’t believe all the people down on Fremont Street in costumes. All they require is a small monetary donation to get a picture with them. You have to give them credit…at least they put effort into it right!
I took a picture of this ampersand on my first day in Las Vegas, and we happened to walk by it again one night when it was all lit up. Its amazing what a difference light does. I got alot of inspiration in the contrast between night and day.
I just love all the palm trees and signs together. Its so beautiful.
You wouldn’t believe the amount of walking you can do in one day!
We went to about 15 different casinos over the 4 days I was in Vegas. It was pretty interesting seeing all of the different marketing efforts each casino tried. Its pretty neat when you think about all of the effort that goes into creating, building, and marketing a casino. Everyone has to be different and extravagant in order to draw people in. Like the Golden Nugget which has the worlds largest golden nugget, the Paris which has a fake Eiffel tower, the Bellagio with its amazing shopping and water features.
There really is alot to see in Vegas, more than one might think. My friend Janelle and I even got to go on a rollercoaster at The New York New York, and my childhood friend Jeff sang karaoki with me for the first time ever. We went wine tasting in a cellar at the Rio and an amazing cheese pairing. We even had the chance to go see The Pawn Stars pawn shop
, and to be quite honest I was really not impressed. I was really hoping the owner or one of his sons was in so I could tell him how its sad it is that he takes advantage of people. It was pretty funny seeing all of his overpriced merchandise. How can people even be interested in buying from him…duh dont you watch his show?
I did have one major dissapointment in Vegas, and that was the show MYSTÈRE
. I was so bored! They say its a high-energy Cirque du Soleil classic, but I caught myself falling asleep a couple of times. I was expecting something with a bit of a story line. It was literally like being in some crazy persons dream, but with more sleep. If you ever go to Vegas I suggest you save your money and see something else.
You cant go to Vegas without visiting the Hoover Dam. What I loved most about the dam was all of the art deco inspiration. The typography, signage, and sculptures are all original to when they finished the dam in 1936 and are covered in art deco. Check out some of the photos I captured on our walk over the Dam.
Rebranding your company can be such a stomach turning experience. I don’t know about you but I love change. I change my living room around every couple of months or so, I live for change. But humans, by our very nature, don’t like change. For most businesses there couldnt be a more stressful endeaver than changing the face of there business. Understanding the reasons and having the know how to do it can soften the stress of a rebrand and have a powerful impact on your market and ultimately your ROI.
FIRST, WHAT EXACTLY IS A BRAND?
Most people think a Brand, is the logo of a company. Im sorry to say that they are not 100% wrong but not completely right. A Brand is much more than just the “face” of a business. Your logo and colors are visual representations of what your Brand really is. A Brand is the gut feeling you get when you encounter a product or business. Does that business or product make you feel confident, comfortable, and at ease or excited, on edge, and pumped? A Brand is a reflection of who and what your target audience aspires to be when they put on that 4,000 dollar dress or 500 dollar pair of Prada Shoes. Its the promise of giving them the feeling that they expect when they put on the shoes. We call this promise, The Brand Promise. But the Brand Promise is only a part of a Brands Positioning.
Brand positioning refers to a “target consumer’s” reason to buy your brand in preference to others. Its really important that all of your Branding activity has one common aim. Your brand positioning should guide the user and inform them of the benefits/reasons to buy. In order to effectively put yourself in the market its important to figure out your niche market. Your niche market should be carefully chosen and a differential advantage must be created in your consumer/customers mind. Brand positioning provides a way in which an organization can draw a picture of what it can do for them, as well as how it can make them feel. Brand positioning ultimately forms customer’s views and opinions.
Brand Positioning must answer these questions:
Is your product/business unique/distinctive vs. competitors?
Is your product/business significant, exciting, and encouraging to your niche market?
Is it appropriate to all major geographic markets and businesses?
Is it sustainable and can it be delivered consistantly across all points of contact with the consumer?
Is it helpful for an organization to achieve its financial goals?
Is it able to support and boost up the organization?
McDonald’s brand promise is a great example! I think McDonalds Brand Promise is: an inexpensive, great tasting, familiar and consistent meal delivered quickly in a clean environment. Wherever you just might be, the fries are always crispy, the coffee comes in a handy take-out cup, and the bathrooms are clean. Personally Im not a fan of fast food, nor McDonalds bathrooms but for the most part Mcdonalds always comes through on their Brand Promise. The sign out front that says 50,000,000 served kind of proves it. The brand promise is one of the most powerful aspects of branding and gives the seller control over the buyer’s experience.
Ultimately rebranding is a shift in your culture.
Companies should always be thinking about their brand and their position in the market. If you want to stay viable in the market or simply survive you have to constantly take a look at your brand, its position in the market, and your brand promise. If their was such a thing as a book of business history Im sure it would be full of businesses that refused to change, rekindle its brand, and reposition itself, and are now fossils.
To consider rebranding, it’s important to answer the following questions:
Has your market share been dropping? If it has, ask yourself why? Is it the economy, are you making bad business decisions, are you not keeping up with the latest marketing trends? Are your competitors picking up the pieces for you? Rebranding your company may be in order.
Are you different than the competition? In almost every sector in the marketing mix companies say the same thing. At some point everyones message becomes all blurry and the target audience looses focus.
When you market yourself, are you talking about your business or your customer? Alot of times companies use their benefits and their price to sell a product, doing this however doesnt create a preference for your product. Everyone knows Nike, and their tagline, “Just Do It”, well Nikes brand makes the customer see and feel differently about themself and their performance, this creates a preference.
Can you move into new or different market? Can you offer another service or buy out another company who’s services align with yours?
Before taking the ReBranding plunge consider these points:
First and foremost, make sure you know your customer. Now the ONLY way to do this is with marketing research, and its one of the single most important marketing measure you can take. Quantitative and projectable data that includes and discovers emotional triggers, and intensity. How are you supposed to reach them on an emotional level that will make your target audience love, pursue and covet your brand? Well, figure out what makes them tick and you’ll find the right things to say that makes them go GAGA
over your product of business.
Ensure your brand position is different than your competition. If your not different your audience will choose the market leader or the cheapest viable option. Make sure your different.
A little attitude goes along way. Being different is one thing, you have to look and feel different. Dont pigeon hole yourself in the stereotypical. Its not just about having a different message, you have to live it.
Change your business process, and policies to fulfill your brand promise. McDonalds wouldnt be where it is if headquarters didnt arrange itself with its brand promise. A brand only works if it has some meaningful connection with the customer. If your brand promise is a lie your customer will see right through you. If your brand promise is not true but is the best opportunity for your business, its time to make some changes to how your business is organized and ran. This is the single most important key to running your business. Fulfill your brand promise, I mean really live it each day.
Many business owners overlook the importance of their brand. Lets not forget that rebranding your business is much more than a marketing tool. Every aspect of your company must have the same message. If you get lost in the mix how do you say the right things to your customer.
Make sure that your providing your company with the right message and give your employees a direction. Rebranding isnt an impossible task, it should be a fun and exciting journey for you and your company. Rebranding helps you weather the economic storm by staying ahead of the game. Dont try and keep up, find your attitude and stay out front.
If your not out front its time to rebrand.