GUEST BLOG – CAROLINE ELLERBECK (4)

Geschreven op 12 March 2013 door Flowmagazine

Every Wednesday we feature a guest blogger on Flowmagazine.nl.
This month: illustrator Caroline Ellerbeck, http://carolineellerbeck.wordpress.com/

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I have three kids and I’m married to Gilles. I work as an illustrator for publishing houses and I co-own Homemade Happiness. I have recently started self-publishing my own books. I am giving away an a4 download each week.

I always see images. Nothing I can do about it. They simply catch my eye. In the newspaper, in the supermarket, in the street. Often I’ll buy a book. Not to read it, but because the cover is pretty or the insides are special. I love artists who make conceptual work. For instance an add campaign. At first glance it’s obvious what’s going on. But I also enjoy details and frills. Or little jokes inside a busily illustrated picture. Fun to look at. Especially in picture books.

A year ago I drew my first fairy tale coloring book, a picture book as well, or really a fairy tale in the shape of a coloring book. So all the illustrations were in black-and-white. Drawing in black-and-white is quite a challenge. Pictured above are some of my favorite black-and-white illustrations (by Fiep Westendorp , Fleur van der Weel, Coby M Krouwel, Wendy Panders, Joelle Jolivent).

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Fairy tales get my creative juices flowing. As a child I was a bit afraid of fairy tales, but I did love and enjoy them as well. At home we used to have a book with very dark illustrations. That book has always stuck with me. Pictured above are illustrations from fairy tales from my own collection. Especially those pop-up books by Louise Rowe and Anouck Boisrobert are gorgeous!

It’s such an inspiration to make and publish my own books. A beautiful concept, endless drawing and a bit of writing. Three of my favorite things. Currently I am working on a fourth fairy tale coloring book: Cinderella. I start by sketching 12 pictures that tell the entire story. As I am drawing I decide what the characters should look like. Pictured below are some of the illustrations from my coloring fairy tales.

See the picture on the right? It’s a drawing sheet with a decorated edge. You can download the sheet right here and either stick in an image or make a drawing inside of it.

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Posted by our guest blogger: Caroline.

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SATURDAY MARKET (117): RETURN TO SENDER

Geschreven op 7 March 2013 door Flowmagazine

Return to Sender is the fair trade initiative of Katja Schuurman (a Dutch actress). Apart from the popular collection sold at HEMA (a Dutch department store) they have recently started a web shop with a symbolic gift collection. Janneke Monkhorst runs the day-to-day business in their Delft office.

“Who” is Return to Sender? What kind of organization is it?
“The Return to Sender Foundation was started by Katja Schuurman. In 2006 it became an official foundation and the organization and the management were established. Return to Sender is always on the lookout for special products in the poorest regions of the world so those products can be sold in The Netherlands. This is our way to stimulate the local economy and the profits are returned to the local producers and put into educational projects: Return to Sender!”

What makes a product right for your line?
“Return to Sender products are honest, cheery, authentic, but also powerful: first of all, it needs to be a very beautiful, moving or exciting that you simply must have. In addition, we also tell you the great story behind the product. So it’ll make you twice as happy!”

Which Return to Sender story has most stuck in your mind?
“In our new web shop we sell beautiful sustainable paper flowers. They’re made in Mexico, supervised by 80-year-old Grandpa Fortino. He’s been working together with his children and grandchildren for years making these wonderful flowers according to his own tradition. Another great story from the HEMA collection is the one behind the felt charms from Brazil. A small group of women from the favelas (‘slums’) in Recife started a cooperative making felt bag and Christmas charms. These charms have become bestsellers at HEMA and the great thing is that they started out with 10 women now there are 135 of them!”

http://returntosender.nl/shop/

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GUEST BLOG – CAROLINE ELLERBECK (3)

Geschreven op 6 March 2013 door Flowmagazine

Every week we feature a guest blogger on Flowmagazine.com. This month: illustrator Caroline Ellerbeck, http://carolineellerbeck.wordpress.com/

I have three kids and I’m married to Gilles. I work as an illustrator for publishing houses and I co-own Homemade Happiness. I have recently started self-publishing my own books.

I’ll be giving away a download every week in this blog series. This week I am making a sheet filled with flowers. Great for sticking on the wall or for wrapping a small present.

I’ve been working as an illustrator for the past seven years. Working from home. I love working from home as it gives me a lot of freedom. When I’m busy I sometimes pull an all-nighter and when I’m not as busy I love being free to do what I want. As I live in the center of Rotterdam there’s always something going on.

Text in image:
Flower poster

Drawing is the thing I like best. When I am drawing I forget the world around me and I loose myself in my work. I always like getting to work. If I get stuck on a drawing I stop immediately. There’s no point in simply plodding on. A nice big break to clear my head usually helps. After a few hours I’ll be good to go.

The first book I did illustrations for was Yindee is jarig (‘Yindee’s Birthday’). A Little Golden Book about Yindee, the little elephant in Artis (Dutch zoo). I was thrilled at the opportunity, but I was also very worried about whether I’d be able to pull it off: drawing 28 pages in such a short time span. Making books is something I simply adore! Back when I was a kid I made my own books. At the academy I used to make picture stories. Just making a nice picture isn’t my thing. The concept is what I find important in illustration. My nine-year-old son Luuk also makes his own little books. His debut: The case of the wolves. Wonderful! Making illustrations to go with a good stories isn’t hard for me. But I do need to have a connection to the story. Whether it’s a beautiful poem or a marketing campaign doesn’t really matter, it just has to appeal to me.

 Text in image:
Workplace at home

I’m longing for spring, for flowers and sunshine. That’s why I made a sheet filled with flowers, which you can download here. Drawing flowers is great. Making patterns is second nature to me. I bought this wonderful little flower painting (see image) in a second hand shop recently. That same night I got the urge to start painting flowers (see image). Not brilliant, but such fun to do! Painting is something I want to get serious about at some point. Fat brushes and daubs of paint. Once my daughter Flores will be going to school, in about two years, I’ll have a bit more time on my hands. I’ll go for it! Below is an impression of a couple of my paintings.

 

Text in image:
Painting on canvas

Posted by our guest blogger: Caroline.

 

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MUSEUM PARTY

Geschreven op 4 March 2013 door Flowmagazine

One of the best things about the current issue of the original Flow is the poster with ‘Dutch treasure troves’. 24 museums – lesser known ones – each got their own little room in a big block of flats. The idea behind this: treasure troves of The Netherlands. It was such fun making the illustration together with British Ruby Taylor. Us: ‘We miss something… Could you draw maybe an elephant in the room for the Naturalis museum?’ Ruby: “Yes, I could, but you know what really would be funny: a giraffe!’ And so we went about each and every room and the end result was so wonderful that we put it in twice, once without the text. Took a bit of time, but it was totally worth it. Last weekend, inspired by the poster, I went to the Kröller-Muller museum (an art museum and sculpture garden) and the Museonder (an underground museum). And I found that what we always say is actually true: museums inspire! It also made me want more. Lots of little rooms left to go! Posted by: Jocelyn

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SATURDAY MARKET (116): LA FARME

Geschreven op 2 March 2013 door Flowmagazine

 

Graphic designer Anne Olde Kalter likes getting her hands dirty. Which is why she sells those divine letterpress prints in her Etsy shop.

Tell us a little about yourself?
“I’ve been living in Amsterdam ever since I was 18, but for the past few years I’ve moved just outside the city to a very pretty spot. It allows me to work wonderfully and in summer I spend most of my day outside. However, if I feel like it, I can be in the city in fifteen minutes. I live together with Dirk. We love going to flea markets and picking up beautiful or unusual items. We sell those in our other Etsy shop, www.left-right.nl.“

What is your background?
“I trained as an art director and I worked as a copywriter for commercials for a few years. In the end I started to miss making things with my hands and I began my own studio. I am a very busy graphic designer and illustrator and I focus on handmade design, like letterpress.”

Where did you learn the letterpress technique?
“My first experience with letterpress was a weekend course in New York, wonderful, but miles away. I was so pleased when I came across the Grafisch Werkcentrum Amsterdam (‘graphic work center Amsterdam’). You can take all kinds of courses there and come in to print as well. My favorite bit is getting my hands dirty and the imperfection of letterpress. Computers are such a large part of our lives these days. The possibilities are mind blowing. But using my hands for a day is so satisfying. Much more satisfactory than staring at a screen all day.  Which is why for La Farme I always try to execute an idea without using a computer. For the Amsterdam restaurant Radijs (‘radish’) we made the logo using stamps cut from radishes and a large drawing on the wall.”

www.etsy.com/shop/LaFarme

http://www.grafischwerkcentrumamsterdam.nl/

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HAARLEM CALLING (2)

Geschreven op 1 March 2013 door Flowmagazine

Hah, we see each other all the time in real life, and preferably clutching a massive latte in our coffee place, together with a bag of prints and an agenda filled with lists of ideas. But, but, but… if that’s not in the cards, then we’ll just do it like this! Posted by: Astrid

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GUEST BLOG – CAROLINE ELLERBECK (2)

Geschreven op 28 February 2013 door Flowmagazine

Every week we feature a guest blogger on Flowmagazine.com. This month: illustrator Caroline Ellerbeck, http://carolineellerbeck.wordpress.com/

I have three kids and I’m married to Gilles. I work as an illustrator for publishing houses and I co-own Homemade Happiness. I have recently started self-publishing my own books.

I’ll be giving away a download every week in this blog series. This week I have made a special Valentine’s Day cake topper, which you can download.

Homemade Happiness I run together with Diana van Ewijk. We make printable templates for (children’s) parties. I illustrate and make the templates. Together we decide what we’d like to try this time. Often we’ll meet up in a café to put together a new collection. I get really inspired by working together and coming up with a concept. Diana always manages to find the best examples! For the third time we are also putting together the Celebrate & Decorate Calendar for Gezinnig (‘Familicious’) and we also make the Cut-out Card Calendar together. We have so many printable templates in our web shop that sometimes I get giddy just thinking about all the things we’ve made together. Diana has a home library with over a hundred scrapbooks that provide me with tons of inspiration.

Text in the picture:
We get our inspiration from books we find in charity shops.
Ideas from long ago are still fun!

In honor of Valentine’s Day I’ve made a special template for this blog. You can download and print it, there’s a step-by-step example below on how to put your Valentine’s Topper together.

Posted by our guest blogger: Caroline.

 

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CUT-OUT ART FOR FLOW

Geschreven op 27 February 2013 door Flowmagazine

We are working on another great project: the Flow Let’s Go Outside book. All about nature, not the kind that’s complicated and far away, but the sparrows in your backyard and the frogspawn in the ditch around the corner. We’ve asked five illustrators to come up with new versions of old fashioned school plates by Koekkoek. Remember those plates that used to hang in schoolrooms way, way, before the IWBs?

Here’s a sneak preview of two nascent beauties by Geertje Aalders who made one of cut-out art (above) and one in oil (below). And yes, the original Koekkoek illustrations will be in the book as well of course! The Let’s Go Outside book will be available in shops as off April 2nd. Posted by: Astrid

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