Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tintastic: Clotted Cream

Second to the OXO tin, this Devonshire Clotted Cream tin is one of my favorites, in part, because of the story behind it. I got it while visiting London, England for my cousin’s wedding. Over the course of my four-day jaunt, I perused many London museums and galleries, and in doing so, I managed to come across Portobello Road Market: one of London's notable street markets, known for its second-hand clothes and antiques.

Photos from L to R; "Portobello Road, London, England," by Another_Noon'e Photostream, "Cream Tea.Jpg" by, and Personal Photo, London England © 2009 by Emily Quillen. All rights reserved.

Packed with little store fronts and ramshackle booths stuffed with vintage goods and yummy foods, Portobello Market is a collectors dreamscape! Among all the vendors, there were a few selling vintage tins. I saw sooo many beautiful tins that I wanted to take home with me, but this one had the right price tag, only £5…score!

The best part about this tin is that it is totally unique to England. Associated primarily with South West England, clotted cream is generally served as part of a “cream tea” on scones with strawberry, or raspberry jam. Traditionally used instead of butter, the cream is a true British delight and is oh, so yummy!

In addition to being a wonderful keepsake from England, this tin showcases a fantastic color combo of mint green, orange, white and black. I particularly love the graphics: the playful green stripes, the wonderfully adorned frame around the “Genuine Clotted Cream,” the jumping cow with a flower at the tip of its tail, and of course, the elegantly rendered ship on the top lid. What a mish-mash of styles and content, but oddly enough, it works… in a quirky British kind-of-way!

In case you’re wondering, the pic of me in front of the mini was taken just after I purchased my lovely little tin…I’m celebrating with some mulled wine!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Sketchbook Project: #1

Check it out, the very first sketch to hit the pages of my Moleskine! I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out. As I’m working on these, I have to remind myself, that they are; a) sketches and b) they need to be done QUICK! I have a hundred pages to fill and not a whole lot of time to do it in. By Dec.1st I have to have this book filled-up and shipped back to Art House, so that it can start its tour across the US. I have such a tendency to get sucked into the itty-bitty details of each drawing, so this is certainly going to be an exercise in speed and restraint.

Overall, it’s an exciting challenge and I’m happy to participate in such a great project! If you missed my earlier post about Art House and The Sketchbook Project, be sure to read it here. Also, be sure to check out the the Art House website if you’re interested in joining, or participating in any of their future Projects! Stay tuned…many more sketches to come!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

New Pattern: Tattoo

I’m very happy to add an exciting new pattern to the Cosmos Creative Collection! It’s called, "Tattoo" and it’s a little crazy, but lovely none, the less. As with all of the patterns in the Cosmos Creative Collection, this pattern was originally created in black and white and then developed into three color-ways. I am a firm believer in designing each pattern in black and white first, because if it doesn’t work in black and white, then it doesn’t work at all. Just one of those things that has been drilled into my head after many years of art classes’s true!

I’ve shown three color-ways here and I do believe, they are all appealing in their own right however, I think my favorite is the pink and grey one, a close second is the orange and lavender, and lastly the blue and teal. Soon enough, I will be making some hand-made goods showcasing the "Tattoo" pattern and they will be for sale on Etsy. In addition to making lots of new goodies for the Cosmos Creative Etsy shop, I will also be launching a revised website! More about that soon…so stay tuned and stay inspired!

Up next: A drawing from The Sketchbook Project! Yey.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tintastic OXO

Over the course of nine years I’ve been collecting lovely little tins such as the one above. I’m not exactly sure in what way this passion came about and in fact, I’m trying to recall the very first tin that started it all. Frustratingly enough though, I don’t remember…funny how the human brain works. I’m sure one of these days, while I’m brushing my teeth, it will come to me as a sudden epiphany, but for now, I’ll share how I acquired this particular tin. It was a gift, given to me for my birthday, by my friend John. Every year, John travels to Brimfield, MA to scour antiques, in particular, glass bottles. However on one trip, he came across this OXO tin and thought of me…and thankfully so!

I have to admit, this is by far, one of my most favorite tins that I own. It encompasses a lot of the things I love; it’s red, it's metal, I can put things in it, and it bares the OXO logo, for which I have always had a particular fondness. I especially love the playful shape of the o's in this version of the logo. Also lovely about this tin, is the scratchy patina on the side and back panels and the late-modern use of sans serif type.

In total, I have over forty vintage tins that I’ve collected over nine years. They have either been given to me as gifts, or I’ve acquired them through perseverance and a few strict guidelines. I have two criteria when it comes to collecting these lovely little beauties and they are; cost and size. I never spend more than ten dollars, unless the tin is larger than a ten dollar bill and in fantastic condition. More often then not, the tin must be empty, rust and dent free, and most importantly, exhibit fantastic typography and graphics. As a graphic designer, vintage tins serve as a constant source of inspiration for me. I hope to share more from the collection soon, so stay tuned to stay inspired! There will be many more to come.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

When the Ordinary becomes Extraordinary

Thanks to my friend Paul, I was fortunate enough to see this amazing documentary, Herb & Dorothy, over the summer. If you haven’t seen this film already, try and find a way to do so! I saw it when it played at the Cable Car Cinema here in Providence, but seeing as that was back in June or something, I’m pretty sure you’ll have to go elsewhere to see it now.

I really can’t decide what I love most about this film; the couple, the art, the animals…or just simply the story. The film documents the life of Herbert Vogel, a postal clerk, and Dorothy Vogel, a librarian, who managed to build one of the most important contemporary art collections in history with very modest means. Guided by two rules; affordability and size, Herb and Dorothy collected works by Christo and Jean Claude, Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein, Chuck Close, Sol Lewitt and many others who were, at the time, unknown. Over the span of thirty years, the Vogel’s managed to fill every corner of their one-bedroom Manhattan apartment with over 4,000 pieces of art. Eventually their collection appreciated so significantly that it became worth several million dollars.

Directed and produced by first time filmmaker Megumi Sasaki, Herb and Dorothy is a captivating story about an extraordinary couple whose love and passion for art defied convention and encouraged the art world to question what it means to collect and appreciate art. On many different levels, this film is the quintessential love story, it will warm your heart and inspire your passions. Be sure to visit the website to learn more and find out where Herb & Dorothy are traveling next...

HERB & DOROTHY Trailer from Herb & Dorothy on Vimeo.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Providence Artist: Jacqueline Ott

When I first moved to Providence in 2000, I had a small one-bedroom apartment on the east side, was attending the CE program at RISD and all the while, working as a marketing intern for a web design company called Shazamm. The only thing I was lacking was my own studio, but thanks to RISD Artworks, I quickly found a small space on Union St. in the old Telephone Building. At the time, I didn’t know anything about renting work spaces in Providence. However, I did know that I could afford the rent on this particular space, and that I was to write my rent checks out to one, Ms. Jacqueline Ott.

As time progressed, I quickly realized that the space wasn’t that great, but that my studio mate was. On the rare occasion that we happened to be in the studio at the same time, I would stop by Jacqueline’s space, just a doorway away, meander in and say hi. She was always pleasant, rather calming in her disposition, frequently sporting black and hunched over a table in what was, a very white and rustic workspace. It’s interesting to say this, but at the time, I had no conscience interest in patterns, but I was immediately drawn to her work and her process. I thought wow, how insanely meticulous, but yet, so meditative her work was. And to this day, it still is.

Just recently I looked Jacqueline up on the “interweb” and came across this fabulous YouTube video thanks to the NetWorks 2008 Project. Watching this totally reminded me of all the things I love about Jacqueline and her work. Even nine years later, they remain to be a source of perpetual inspiration! Be sure to keep an eye out for Jacqueline’s work in the New England area and abound, it will definitely pop up and is totally worth checking out…

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Random Reading

"A candidate who has the power of personal persuasion and/or moral authority plus perceptible hopefulness will always prevail...against the contender who lacks the same."

Symboline Dai, "Come in Like a Leo," Providence Phoenix Jan. 2009.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Sketchbook Project: Library

I’m super excited to announce that my sketchbook from Art House has arrived!! A little over a month ago, thanks to my wonderfully talented friend Gillian, I learned about Art House and decided to participate in one of their fantastic projects, The Sketchbook Project: Library.

Started two years ago, Art House creates massive, nationwide art projects that tie hundreds of artists together with the goal of bringing art to the masses. The purpose of The Sketchbook Project is to create a giant collection of sketchbooks from around the globe and make it accessible to everyone. Once I’ve filled up my sketchbook with lovely little tid-bits, it will join thousands of other books made by artists from all over the world. Starting in April, they will be exhibited at select galleries across the US before finding a permanent home in the Art House Library. Visitors to the galleries and the Library will receive library cards that will allow them to view the books alphabetically by artist, location, etc.

Overall it’s a fun and exciting opportunity to share my work with hundreds of people that might not otherwise see it. And the best part is – each sketchbook has a theme…but, of course, I’m not going to tell you what mine is. Not yet. So, check back frequently to see photos of my sketchbook as I fill it. Perhaps by the time I’m finished, you’ll figure out what the theme is!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Long Time No Post!

Long time no post, indeed! It’s hard to believe that it’s been over a year since I last featured any news or happenings here on the Cosmos Creative blog. Fortunately, a lot has happened since March 2008 and I’m here to write all about it. Over the up and coming weeks, I plan to post regularly, if not daily about Cosmos Creative Inc., including what I’m doing in and out of the studio, what it’s like to live in providence, the music I’m listening to, the stuff I’m reading and all the art and design I’m experiencing and seeing. There will be lots of great things to look at and read about, so stay tuned and stay interested! Next up: The Sketchbook Project: Library. Yey!

Image via tarpforlife