Clients : | Oprah Magazine | New York Observer | Urban Outfitters (release: 2016 Fall collection) | Domino | Better Homes & Gardens | Ahmad Tea | Simply Pure/Delights International | Oreo | Bed Bath & Beyond | Target | Danielle LaPorte | Diabetic Living | Designer Boys (AU, New Zeland) | One King’s Lane | Oprah Magazine | Papyrus | Norwegian Financial Times (D2) | EMI Productions | Akasha | Verily Magazine | Rockport Publishers | Moroccan Oil | Papyrus | House of Creed | METcolors | FAB.com | Hector Beverages |Joseph Joseph | Joss & Main | Gilt.com | Queen Helene | Y Media Labs | Ready366 | Computer Arts | Featured : Style.com, WWD, Saatchi Art, Jealous Curator, Artsy Forager, Design Sponge, You Art Me (European licensing company), Trend Hunter, Design For Mankind, Illustration Age, Doodlers Anonymous, Directory of Illustration (Published in 2013), Escape Into Life, Dziennik.com (NY magazine), UPPERCASE (Published in 2013). Awards : Finalist in 2013 Richeson International Portrait Competition, Finalist in the MOWA Biennial 2014 (Portrait), Special Art Award : Women Art Online (2015) | WASSUP : My new collection of art prints + cards is launching March 21st — make sure to sign up! MOOD : Ecstatic! CURRENTLY : Painting abstracts. | Email me your brief for collaboration.

 

DEAREST FRIENDS IN THE ART CRIME

I’ve decided to create this page for you, to support you, because I believe in that each and every one of us can uplift the other. Just recently I saw someone bashing herself for her work and comparing herself to my work (bad idea right away!) and I felt such compassion…I’ve been there, feeling stuck and blah.
Secondly I receive a lot of emails from artists asking me for some advice.

Here we go.

  1. INSPIRATION. My first advice to you is to shut down the internet. You must rest your brain, go to the church or a bar, if that’s your vibe and feel who you really are. The inspiration is great, but it can kill your confidence. That’s what happened to this kind girl who compared herself to me, even though there was nothing to compare.
  2. ATTITUDE. Doesn’t matter which leg lands first on your floor in the morning. If you’re feeling stuck, go for a walk. Julia Cameron swears on it. Morning pages might be awesome too; I’m still procrastinating on them though. You must sort yourself out either by drinking a glass of wine (why not..), talking to a friend (you can even email me!), talking to your guide (yes I believe in those and I know that my guardian angel is Valentina), having sex or plainly showing up to work it through.
  3. PERSISTENCE. Is everything. I started my web design business in 2010 (freelancing before) and I built it like it’d be on speed; fast, passionately, tentatively, with focus. Illustration business (yes, you must treat it as a business, if you want to be in business) tends to take more time to build. Many people need websites, illustration is more of a luxury item.
  4. TOOLS. I use Arches + Fantastico watercolor paper. It’s expensive and it can intimidate you. When I was exhibiting my Lost Genius women series I used only the best paper and mates and frames. For some quicker illustration I use Canson and Strathamore. I’m lucky, because Strathamore is located 50 miles from me, which make me feel like I’m supporting a local business! Find your favorite. And remember, if it intimidates you, buy a cheaper one.
    Brushes are important as well. I like to use squirrels. For the paint I go for Grahams and W&N. DICKBLICK is the most fun place to be in Chicago. But you can order everything online.
    Photoshop is my main digital tool for rendering and cleaning up.
  5. STYLE. is important. Once I emailed a very successful illustrator and he suggested to take down everything but the watercolors. I used to paint with acrylic and even do some digital work. Within the watercolor you can have hundreds of styles. Paint, paint and paint, the style will emerge.
  6. DONATE. Only if it’s a YES. 
  7. COPYCATS. Read my article about art price, charity and rip offs.
  8. PLAY. Be responsible, fun and hope for the best. But most importantly, work hard and play hard!

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES. 

  1. CONSULT. If you’re confused/lost in the art biz — there is one lady you MUST hire. Her name is Maria Brophy and she’s amazingly knowledgable and super nice. Let me repeat — hire her!
  2. SUPPLIES. DICKBLICK for art supplies. Always and foreva.
  3. TUNE-IN. Best podcast for illustrators. Yeah, there is bunch of accomplished NY-based geniuses, but it’s just pure awesomeness.
  4. PRICING. How to price your work by Jessica Hische and Graphic Artist’s Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines book. (aff link)
  5. STYLE #2. Nate Williams (yes, he told me to take down everything except watercolors. Thanks Nate!) : Should an illustrator have a style. 
  6. ONLINE. You MUST have a website. So, time for a shameless plug : I created a WordPress program that will teach you how to create your own website over the weekend, literally. It doesn’t teach you about the design, but it helps with the technical drama. Read more here.
  7. FB. Come to my Facebook? 

SOME RANDOM ILLUMINATION. 

  1. RYTHM. I tend to work the best while listening to an audiobook or Florence And The Machines. My work is better, happens faster and I’m happier. Find your own rhythm.
  2. HANGUPS. If you have a foreign accent you better start liking it. Someone once told me I need to embrace it and make it my identity, because everyone thinks it’s cute and it feels when it intimidates me. Never allow this kind of stuff to stop you from calling people/prospects. Phone calls will take you there faster.
  3. PLEXIGLAS. I put a huge transparent piece of plexiglas on my looong table and I’m never afraid of spilled inks and such. Also, I slid some memorable quotes and instructions underneath the plexiglas to have them staring at me while I work.

Have a good life and just show up!

marta2