End of the Blog

Hello. If anyone is finding themselves on my blog page I am officially declaring this the last post. You can find me on Instagram and Tumblr if you would like to continue to follow my artwork. Thanks for your support. It's been fun!


Tumblr for sketches

I started a tumblr page to keep track of my sketches I've been posting on Instagram. Keeps a nice neat record.



Get around Kansas City

We've had some visitors lately and there's nothing we like to do more than show off our Kansas City, MO. "What's in Kansas City?," people are always asking. Well you should come find out because we never run out of things to do! Keep in mind this is just a small sampling...

Let's start with Nate's family visit in March. With a little niece and nephew to consider, our knowledge of family friendly spots is tested. We took little Tommy and Lucy to the Sea Life Aquarium in Crown Center, which also houses Lego Land and Kalidescope. We took the parents down to Martini Corner for some cocktails, normally a bustling night spot, you can stop in for happy hour and food at one of the clustered bars. We also hung out with some friends at one of our many picnics on the Nelson Atkins Museum lawn.

My Dad visited in May. Aside from the bout of appendicitis I had to deal with Friday, we had a fun time, and I didn't let my emergency surgery stop us from getting around. We took my dad out to Weston, MO. A small historic town nearby with shopping and fun seasonal events, such as a VW Car Show. You have to make a stop at O'Malleys underground Pub if you go to Weston. We also made a stop at Weston Bend State Park. Weston is great in the Fall when you can visit several pumpkin patches and apple orchards, taking part in picking your produce and other fun activities.

My Mom, stepdad, and brother visited us in July for the 4th of July holiday. It's been awhile since they've been to KC, so we wanted to show them a good time. Turns out it was a good time to come! To kick off the weekend we walked up to the WWI Liberty Memorial Monument. This tower sits on one of the high points of Kansas City's sprawling metro area, which gave us the vantage point to see fireworks show going on all over the city and in various suburban neighborhoods.  The monument also houses an absolutely amazing WWI collection that is a must see. 

We visited to the Steamboat Arabia Museum in the Downtown River Market, home to a wonderful seasonal farmers market, and local restaurants. The Steamboat Arabia Museum houses an incredible collection of perfectly preserved goods from an a steamboat that sunk in 1856. We joined some friends at the annual outdoor event, Shakespeare in the Park, and this years play was As You Like It. We took a walk though Loose Park, a beautiful park with lots of space to run around, a free kids water playground, a duck pond, incredible Springtime rose garden, and more. 

No visit to KC is complete without BBQ, so we went off the beaten path a little to Woodyard BBQ where you can sit on a brick patio and enjoy some live music. We shopped antiques down in the West Bottoms, a historic and industratial part of town recently taken over by antique shops that stock up and then open once a month on the first friday of the month. After a few hours in the midday heat, we went over to the West Side neighborhood (worth a visit for the  beautiful historic homes and wonderful local resturants) for some naturally flavored snow cones at Little Freshie. Our friends in Akkilles played a CD release show at The Brick, one of many local dive bars with great food and a cozy environment to see live music.

Whew! We did have some down time, but this doesn't even cover it all.

I just thought I would throw in a few images from some of the other things we've done this first half of 2013 including the First Friday in the Crossroads Art district, the Loose Park Rose Garden, the Youth Symphony show at the new Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, the Kansas City Zoo, and non-stop trips to the many wonderful coffee shops and restaurants around town.

We love this place!!! There is no shortage of things to do. If you have come across this blog when researching your next Kansas City, MO trip, don't hesitate to contact us with questions. We have a lot more up our sleeves.


Sketchbook scans plus fun things to draw with

Just cuttin' loose in my moleskin lately. I've been loving this little portable water color set (Koi Pocket Field Sketch Box). The paint acts similar to gouache, I think because its kind of cheap and gritty, and goes down really opaque. I'm also loving the Zebra brush pen for getting nice brush like thicks and thins with the black line work. I like to go back in with gel pens, color pencils, and pastel pencils for detail. The over saturated reds and pinks come from this crazy hot pink Acryla Gouache. Illustrator Veronica Fish gives it a shout out on a Super Color blog post.


UPDATE: New house, new adventures

2013 is already proving to be a busy yet fun year with a few adventures already under our belt! We started off the year by moving into a new house where we promptly got dumped on with crazy amounts of snow. We are loving the new neighborhood, the proximity to work, and are having a blast making the house feel like home. As you can see, the cats had no problem adjusting...

In Febuary we went to Lawton, OK to see my brother graduate from army basic training. We did the only thing there is to do in Lawton and went to the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge. Within the refuge sits the "The Holy City" a retro recreation of Israel where passion plays have been performed since 1935. Pretty interesting place. We ate some crazy good Texas Longhorn burgers at Meers, home of the best buger in Oaklahoma, and said to be one of the best in the country.

In March we drove up to Minneapolis, MN for a Spring break impromptu trip with our buddies Devon and Erica. We stopped for some art at the Walker Art Center (Painting by Lesley Vance). We had some great food and coffee at Icehouse, The Bad Waitress, Isles Bun and Coffee, and Spyhouse Coffee Shop. Shopped some swanky shops on Hennepin Ave. And we of course loaded up a trailer at Ikea before our ride home...

In May, we celebrated our 5 year anniversary in Puerto Rico! We flew into San Juan and hung out in the spanish forts of Old San Juan. Then we ferried over to Vieques where we stayed at Haciendo Tamarindo, lounged and snorkeled on various beaches, and sipped on Sangira. Our favorite meal of the trip was at El Quenepo where we ate yellowtail and an incredible variation of Mofongo. We ferried back across to the main island and stopped at El Yunque, the national rainforest outside of Fajardo. It was a glorious and restful vacation.


Penelope and the Baby Shower

Weddings and babies. That's just the way it is right now so why not make sure these people have some decent invites and a nice looking place to party.

This invite is for the baby shower of an expecting mother who was keeping the gender of the baby a surprise. Well...baby came early, really early, and now we know that baby is a little girl named Penelope. She is healthy and doing great! Welcome to the world, Penelope. Congratulations Amanda and Jeremy. (Some info has been altered for privacy.)

My artist pal, Christina Prestidge, and I threw the shower. Let's just say this isn't our first rodeo. A few ideas to share for those who are searching:

★   We arranged fresh flowers in a vintage baby bouncer. Search for vintage blocks and toys on Craigslist, in antique malls, or in thrift stores. In the past I've used magnetic letters on the party favors.

★   We used baby photos of the mom and dad to-be + vintage illustration as garland. Asking the grandmas-to-be for photos includes them in the process, especially if they are long distance. Check out this flickr photo pool for all the vintage illustration your heart desires.

★    Tissue paper flowers. Don't knock 'em. They are pretty and help fill the room quickly. Here's a tutorial from Nesting in the Bluegrass.

★   Set up a "Mama"mosas station substituting sparkling juices for champagne. Add some sliced fresh fruit to garnish. (We had real champagne too - some of just need a little help in a room full of chattering women)

    Tip: If you feel overwhelmed - allocate the food. People are more than happy to bring a sweet treat to share. Christina made that pretty little cake.

Penelope was born at 4lbs, 14oz, but she since gained a whole pound when this photo was taken. Go Penny!


If you would asked me how to spell "etiquette" a few months ago, I would have pondered the placement of all those "t"s. I am now well aquatinted with Etiquette and it's creator, Amanda Williams, an esthetician who has set up shop in the Crossroads of downtown Kansas City. Amanda wanted a fresh and professional feel for her business cards and menus so we ruled out illustration this time and I tried my hand at some layout. Nate is a good coach :) Give Amanda a call, eyelashes are her specialty!


Wedding Shower Invite

I sort of forgot about this little invite I did this summer for a friends wedding shower. I think I felt it was a bit intimate, but I omitted some of the info to compensate. We wanted to make sure the guests shopped with Amanda's style in mind, which leaned on the side of vintage. We even slipped in a little piece of vintage lace into each envelope :) It was a lovely shower, and we hung the unmentionables on clothes lines around the room so we could admire it all. If you need ideas for shopping lingerie for cheap, you can do what I did, and splurge on the underwear and pair them with a sheer, loose-fitting top from a thriftier place (Forever 21/ H&M/ Target). I threw in some of my other drawings below. See the invite for her wedding here.


Advent 2012

Yikes. It's been months since we've posted anything on the blog, but not because we've been slacking off. This summer we put most of our time into renovating parts of our house that needed work. The biggest project was remodeling a bathroom that we took down to the studs, and then slowly, with the help of a friend, put back together weekend by weekend in our spare time. Here's a quick before and after and then I'll get to the art.

So before we knew it, the summer went by (such a fun summer!) and now the advent season is approaching! I feel so privileged to be working on the Jacob's Well advent artwork for I think the 5th year now. We started participating in Advent Conspiracy as a church in 2007. This year we are working towards building a highschool for the Pokot people in Kenya. See more about Jacob's Wells relationship with Pokot here.

This advent we are focusing on God's reign of peace.


Wedding Invitation: Ingrid and Brian

It really is a fun challenge work with a couple to create a wedding invitation that captures the mood of their anticipated big day. Brian and Ingrid wanted hand done, natural, and pretty for their July wedding in Cleveland. The velum envelopes allow the illustration to peek through. They are hand addressed by KC artist Dillion Kinnison and topped with a Jessica Hische "Love" stamp. Congratulations Ingrid and Brian!


Redraw Designer Deck: Playing Cards for Harvesters

Nate and I created these card designs for a fun project called Redraw. We are excited to be a part of this. There are some amazing artists involved. Check out the Facebook page to see more of the card designs and stay tuned on how to get ahold of one of these decks!

"ReDraw is an effort by artists and illustrators from around Kansas and Missouri to recreate the iconic images of playing cards in a fresh way. Each artist was assigned one or more cards and asked to re-illustrate them in their own style. All proceeds will be donated to the Kansas and Missouri based Harvesters Community Food Network.


Letterpress invites: Amanda and Jeremy

Little 4"x 5.5" wedding invites for dear friends. Printed by Skylab Letterpress. This is gonna be a fun wedding!


Cristo Vive!

Our friends Janie and Kenzo hosted us in Cuzco, Peru this March and we had an amazing time. We kicked of the trip painting a mural at the Fundacion Cristo Vive’s newly opened "hidden house" for abuse victims and their kids. Janie captured the two day project and posted on her and Kenzo's blog, Peruzco, about their life in Peru volunteering with the Doctors for Global Heath. Thanks so much for everything guys!

 All photos copyright of Life Writing Photography. More photos from Peru coming soon!