Saturday, February 21, 2015

Artist Mode: the Polka Dot dress

It has only been more than a week that I can say I have really given my focus to my current project.

For the first two weeks of February, I kind of was busy with life. My house help was away for a couple of weeks to take care of her family, so I was left alone with taking care of my boys. At first I thought it would come smoothly. You know, wake up at 4am and prepare everything that the boys need for school and work for that day. Then perhaps I could easily go back to my task for the day, right? Well, turns out, it wasn't that easy. Because although I had some time to focus during the day, my work time is diminished substantially. Between 10am to 4pm isn't always a solid 6 hours because there are laundry days, market days, other errand days squeezed in between days of the week. And as if after completing your errands, you still have that much energy to go back to your project, right? I relied so heavily on black coffee, which yielded another challenge - not sleeping early enough.

But but but... I'm not complaining. It actually is such a blessing in disguise.

Those two weeks taught me a lot of things. Firstly, you need help. Sure, you can and would want to do ALL things, but sometimes, you just gotta accept that it will take you a lifetime to complete your projects if you are totally alone.

I also had these alone times of the day when I would realize a lot of things. Things that I missed to carefully think about while I was preparing this venture. Like, for instance, "having a conversation with my fabrics". It was such a beautiful thing to do. But I will tell about it more in another day, okies?

So, the reason why I'm having such an annoyingly long intro? To justify why I only got to design one dress for those several weeks. 


But, I gotta tell you. This simple looking dress was actually kind of complicated to make. I have tried different techniques, threw away lots of prototypes, even tweaked the original design. But my final prototype made me happy, and I will be producing the items for sale starting Monday.

Here are some photos that I managed to snap in between those 'really focused' days.
I hope I inspire someone today :)

Pinning, basting, cutting, machine-sewing... while watching a documentary on my little buddy Ipod Touch...

Prototypes galore...

My gals...

The small size, modeled here by Aya

I hadn't shown a photo of the small size in the current contest post because I think I am revealing too much of a Momoko's cleavage. I will be making another pattern for her and Ramona (a Blythe) because I think they are just so cute in this print, they deserve their own size, too.

Lastly, me and my current work area.

Messy, I know... but shshhhh...

See ya later!

h u g s,
s h a s h a

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Illustration for atelierniSHASHA contest

I made it one of my goals this year to be more generous in every way I can. And one venue where I thought I can make this happen is by having a contest every time I release a new creation. The first item I made this year is the Graphic Cropped Top, which I think is something I am really proud about because of its versatility. Any doll can look great in it when paired with the right bottom piece.

In the first ever contest, I had a design challenge wherein I asked each of those who wanted to join to think an ensemble with this top in mind. It was fun visualizing and fleshing out their designs, at least in my watercolors. Vandro won as he carved out what was missing in the picture - and that is to add punch a classic ensemble.

I used 4H pencil and mainly watercolors to paint. You can probably tell that I was trying to cover the (messed up) hands of the winning ensemble hahaha!

I was happy to have reunited again with my passion for illustration. This is my first love and I believe I will be painting forever. I just need to do it often to be better! LOL! Maybe on top of Wednesday, I can add in a few hours during weekends for it. We'll see.

Staedler 4H pencil and Cotman watercolors are used here, on a watercolor paper that I couldn't remember where I got from but it is at least 140lbs.

Til next time!!!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Updating the (main) blog

Yup! I updated the main blog. And when I say main, I meant the ateliernishasha blog, for as you can see, this is actually another blog that I started years ago. Supposedly, this blog is for documenting my one year / 53 weeks of journey to becoming the brave person that I want to be. And when I say brave, I meant artist. But, due to my chronic stubbornness and lack of time (to make time), I deserted this. But definitely not the goal, no no. In fact, I am now living the goal that I once set myself to a couple of years back. So please excuse me for a sec, and let me pat my own back. :P

New pages, anyone?
Then you would ask, why not just make another page from the main blog for this Behind the scenes page? Well, two things. Firstly, I realized that I have A LOT of other things to say (and do) that might not fit into the main blog, which I now dedicate only to all things miniature. From doll stuff, to doll fashions, dioramas and any art I make for the love of miniatures, I dump into that page. While other arts that I do, like life (which is pretty much a behind-the-scene kinda thing), I dump in here. Oh, and wait, I also like to sketch and paint.. so I resuscitated my OTHER art blog, artofshasha, back to life and used it as the Paper Affair page here. But more on that later, 'cause those two are not the only blogs I launched for the past 5 years or so. I know. Just a whole LOT.

Secondly, I don't want to just forget about and throw away some of the notes I have written on these blogs. Some notes really surprised me. It's not that I was drunk when I was writing them, but I sure was seizing some kind of moment that may be fleeting. And reading about all those thoughts was a wonderful surprise. I love that feeling.

So yeah, two things - logical and emotional - I just realized.

Now, what's in it for you who probably was just browsing for my latest miniature stuff ? Well, lots of awesome things are in store for you here actually. This is where the party is happening... Ssshhhh... Hahaha! Seriously, this is probably that part of my blog which is the most exciting! Well, I don't know about you but I'm a bit of a chatty girl so I created a place where I can chatter (in between designing and sewing, among other things) my back pain away. Yey!

Truly seriously though, some of the things that you can expect in this part of the room are the following:

1. artworks I'm currently braving odds on
2. who and what inspires me as of the moment
3. tips and tutorials (yay!)
4. new ideas and life hacks (double yay, I guess?)
5. reflections (I won't be mushy, I swear... Okay, I'll try harder.)
5. personal stuff, maybe (stuff I'm into as of the moment that may not have artworks as products, but are really important to becoming and keeping that brave person (aka artist) in me.

So there you go... And you can probably see updates from this part more often so I hope you stick around!


Friday, November 8, 2013

New fashion illustrations and some lessons...

I've enjoyed doing this "Let's Rock This" drawing last night, with my colored pencils on my bed, and learned a few things:

1. I like that I left out the background colorless, giving the focus to the muse.

2. I noticed that one of the best ways to spot 'weak' links in the drawing is to take a photo of it and note, then get back to polishing. Will do this next time!

3. Watercolor pencils don't lay nice on grainy watercolor paper. Too grainy for my taste, and...

4. Remind myself to not push the under drawing pencils too much.

Materials: faber-castell watercolor pencils, staedler graphites, pilot g-tec black 0.3 pen, dong-a metallic pens, berkeley watercolor sketchpad for the "let's rock this" sketch, cattleya regular sketchpad for the "work it" sketch.

This drawing below was inspired from a pretty cool photo from the awesome 
The Sartorialist fashion blog. I incorporated my latest design and Voila!

Let's rock this.

Let's rock this - details

Let's rock this - details

Work it

Work it - details

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Shasha's fashion Illustration, decades back...

I knew I have loved sketching and making fashion illustrations back in the day, taking inspiration from geishas and girls in magazines. I just found this circa 89 scanned photograph of me on my 9th birthday and I thought this image is downright inspirational :)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Another crazy schedule "idea"

What got me overwhelmed, I just realized, is that I am treating sketching/drawing AND rendering as one thing.

They aren’t!

Having no clue what these art terms mean to my venture, I went crazy with my schedule of workloads for the next 53 weeks and knocking myself out.

So how do I go about these…

First, sketching/drawing should be the first to come in. So I need to work on these skills first.
Perhaps, Andrew Loomis’ books are my main resource of knowledge. And oh, the nice, free tutorials from PencilKings!
I probably should be getting started with PencilKings first since there is a schedule that I need to follow.
I think I am currently 5, NO - 15 days late right now. Each day needs only 5 minutes to work on so I can probably squeeze that in early in the morning when I wake up, just before my zumba time.
After that 1-month’s worth of doodling, I’d probably go back to Andrew Loomis’ Figure Drawing book.
I’m probably giving myself two months to complete all these sketching activities.
Need to produce at least one page of sketch for each lesson.
I’d probably use that beautiful sketchbook that is a South Korean brand. It’s pretty thick and not as handy as a moleskin but I’m fine with it.

Then, when I’m done with sketches, I’ll go down to rendering.
The process as to how I’m gonna make it possible is to be discussed later.
As you see, I like to fantasize and dream out all those things – but time management is my enemy, or my weakness.
THAT should be something I need to work out FIRST AND FOREMOST.

Okay, so basically, as I realized a couple of seconds after the previous sentence I had typed, what I’m planning to do really is just an extended version of my original plan.

I am really going crazy.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Week 24, says my calendar

Week 24 should have marked my first collection's Week 11, which means I am supposed to be almost done with it. Boom!

Oh well, I don't feel bad about it much because with all my uber mismanaged time, I could say I still managed to hone the skill.

I have adopted proportions (9 heads) from Chic Francisco's book, Fashion Designing, and worked on my color rendering with the help of my very young and so much fun fashion illustration instructor. I could say I have improved and I'm pretty much happier this time with my work.

These are the ones I've done recently. Tools of the trade: Cattleya sketchpad, staedtler graphite pencils (HB, H3), Pilot G-tec 0.3/Pigma Micron 02 waterproof pen, Prang watercolors, Faber-Castell watercolor pencils.



For my finals next Saturday (7th week at the fashion illustration school), I'll be making two designs - my own high fashion take based on a Geisha and a Vampire. I haven't envisioned anything yet but I'm planning to start soonest so that I'm armed with at least 2 designs for each theme come Saturday. Or even three for each.

'Excited to use my watercolor papers then. Speaking of which, I need to try out those Prang watercolors (that the school recommended) on those watercolor papers before I destroy any underdrawing. If you could see in my "Gradient" illustration, the skirt's teal color bled so much at the sides that I had to lift and lift as much color as I can with tissue paper and water to clean them up. It was really frustrating so lesson learned.

I may post a review on the tools I used recently. Perhaps after a few more illustrations. We'll see.
For now, I gotta go and I hope to post more updates as often as I'd like.