Adventures in Screen Printing.

02.07.12 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy, Inspiration

I’ve been wanting to do some work on expanding my artistic repertoire for a while now, and since I committed to reducing the number of custom painting commissions I was taking on in the new year, it’s exactly the right time to start working toward what is next for Senn & Sons.

I spent the entire weekend with my friend Michelle – the owner of A Second Story, a new gallery and printmaking studio here in San Francisco – so she could help teach me the ins and outs of screen printing.

After studying printmaking at RISD and working to become a master printer in San Francisco, Michelle opened up A Second Story with a couple of partners to have a space to bring artists together to work, collaborate and show their work in their gallery space. She is the perfect person to act as my mentor as I begin to learn the process of screen printing, and her studio is the perfect space to make it happen. I’m a printmaking novice, so she had a pretty steep learning curve to deal with.

It’s definitely going to be a process to get to a point where I have editions of prints worthy of sharing, but for a first go at silk screening, I’m feeling pretty good about what’s possible, and very excited to get back into the studio with some new designs and ideas.

Here’s a look at some bits and pieces of my process.

I prepared transparencies…

Degreased (washed) screens, and dried them…

Added photo-sensitive emulsion to the screens, then burned my images onto them…

Hooked the screens up to this amazing four-color press…

And silk screened a whole lot of test prints…

Trimmed them to size…

And went home with a mind filled with new skills and ideas, a bag filled with test prints, and a long list of things to think about for the next round in the studio.

I can’t wait until I’m back in the studio trying out a few new things. There are so many possibilities with printmaking, especially screen printing, that my head is spinning with ideas and things I want to try. Hopefully I’ll have some fun new things to add to my shop this spring.

(A huge thanks to Michelle at A Second Story for her patience and guidance. I know there’s still a lot to learn, but I feel really great about how much we were able to accomplish in just a weekend.)

Happy Birthday to Me.

01.20.12 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy, Family Life, Shop + Style

I haven’t made a birthday wish list since I was a kid, but what the hell, it’s about time I started up again. (Ahem, are you reading this, husband?)

1. Brand new BICYCLE from Public Bikes.

2. Yummy grapefruit scented candle from Jonathan Adler.

3. Bright ceramic pig planter from Fruit Fly Pie’s Etsy shop.

4. Gorgeous painting by Samantha French.

5. Party dress from Anthropologie.

6. Cocktail bowls and tray from Jill Rosenwald’s Etsy shop.

7. Alphabet rings from Catbird NYC.

8. Sugar jar from Paulova’s Etsy shop.

Holy Shipped.

12.18.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Bird by Bird, Etsy

Get it? (What, you don’t like bad jokes?)

After an intense two weeks, I managed to ship almost all of the paintings I planned to get done before my holiday break began. I moved a few of them to the new year if clients weren’t in need of them before the holidays, but managed to finish 14 of the 17 on my list. Let me just say it wasn’t easy, and I’m still working to catch up on the sleep lost while making the final push to get everything out the door before 10 a.m. on Friday morning. (A very real and non-negotiable deadline.)

I shipped my paintings all over the country – to Chicago, Boston, New York, San Francisco, Wisconsin and even internationally to Calgary and London. I even had two mamas-to-be stop by to pick up their art in person, which is so wonderful to be able to do for my local clients. I’m so happy people all around the world found my work and commissioned me to create art for their homes.

This is going to sound crazy, but I used every spare minute I had to get the paintings done, packed up and shipped, so I didn’t take the extra time to photograph ANY of them. That’s not true, I did manage to photograph ONE of them, which I’ll share with you guys soon! So… if you were one of my clients, please send me photos of your art once it’s hung! I’m dying to see how it looks in your homes.

Now, off to build my business plan for 2012.

Surf’s Up.

11.21.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy, Nursery Design, Shop + Style

It might be cold out, but that doesn’t mean you can’t catch a wave somewhere.

Just listed my new design on Etsy, check it out.

Etsy Treasury: A Handmade Halloween.

10.31.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy

I’m not a big Treasury creator over on Etsy, but I definitely like to poke around during certain times of the year, pulling together some of my favorite items that fit the occasion. Click here or on the photo to check out my “Handmade Halloween” treasury.

This painting series was created for the most adorable little guy who is lucky enough to have a California Beach-themed bedroom. I was actually staying at a hotel on the beach in Santa Monica while working on the sketches and proposal for this piece, so the scenes around me definitely played a part in the final design.

I also made a fun little paper dolls series for my Etsy shop, which I’m working to keep updating regularly.

I’ve been busy in my new studio space, so I’ll be sure to share more new work as I finish it up. (I’ve got monkeys, elephants, champagne bottles popping and a few other fun ones coming up to share!)

A Quickie to Share a New Whale Design.

10.06.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy

*** Update 6/15/12: Prints of the whale paintings are now available HERE! ***

It’s been a crazy rush around here post-Baby Fair. I’ve been working to finish up some client commissions, ship some paintings to NYC, communicate with all the folks I met at the fair and a few other TOP SECRET projects that I’m excited to be working on. I’ll do a full recap of my experience at the Birth & Baby Fair with photos soon, but just wanted to do a quick post to share a cute new design that I’ll be putting up in my Etsy shop (along with a few other new paintings) in the next couple of days.

Ain’t he sweet?

Another Day at the Factory.

07.12.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy

While I’ve been busy working on a plan for the entryway now that we have our gallery wall up and ready for entry action, I’ve also been working on some new paintings (of course). Here are some shots of what’s been happening in the studio (ahem, dining room).

A mini dandelion set…cute, I love pink.

Another set of giraffes…adorbs.

And a new design that’s super sweet and completely personalized. I really hope the three sisters who get this set love it! (Still a work in progress with a few steps left to make it complete, but still worth a peek.)

If you like this post or just want to say “hi,” don’t be shy, leave a comment below.

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I Conquered Renegade.

07.10.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy, Shop + Style

I’ve been looking forward to the Renegade Craft Fair for months, so I knew heading to Fort Mason where it was held would be my only goal for the weekend. I’m usually overwhelmed by all the amazingness (not a real word?) surrounding me at this fair and end up leaving without buying a single thing. This time, though, I went in with a strategy to ensure that wouldn’t happen.

My strategy was simple – browse and be open to things that catch my eye, but be on the lookout for a few things that I’d had on my “to buy” list for a while. First, a statement necklace, possibly beaded, definitely colorful. I pinned this one when I first saw it, and went back to buy it a few days later and it was no longer available. Damn, statement necklace still on the “to buy” list. I was also on the lookout for a simple gold everyday necklace with a disc, charm, ring, small design. Finally, some new art for our gallery wall (it’s almost done, can’t wait to share pics!) and a few other empty walls. I left Renegade with two out of the three things on my list, not bad!

One of my first booth stops of the day revealed exactly what I’d been searching for. Local jewelry designer Yueh-Wen Chang (Wen) creates all of her jewelry, including this necklace, with vintage and repurposed materials. Her work is even featured in the Museum of Craft and Folk Art store.

{necklace by sora designs}

The hubs and I then saw these cool “American Atlas” prints by Brainstorm Prints and picked up the West Coast (current home) and Midwest (home home) prints. Don’t know how or where we’ll hang them yet, but they were too cool to pass up.

{prints by Brainstorm Prints}

Then I started going off strategy about…here. The folks at Clean Getaway Soap Co. had an adorable, colorful and inviting booth set up (yeah, it was awesome and I have no pics, sorry!). I ducked in and with one whiff of their soaps had to buy a couple of coconut cream bars and some lip balm. Soap wasn’t on my “to buy” list, but I figured that it’s always nice to have things like this handy for when I need a last-minute hostess gift. (I can picture this wrapped up in some brown craft paper with some twine wrapped around it.)

{soap and lip balm by Clean Getaway Soap Co.}

I knew I was irreversibly off-strategy when I purchased this print. It’s a corn dog. I like corn dogs, my husband likes corn dogs, my son likes corn dogs. And we apparently like corn dogs enough to put a corn dog print on our wall. Alyson Thomas creates these crazy meat illustrations, and I only felt comfortable buying one at the time…but just *might* have wanted to get one of each. Okay, *for sure* wanted to buy them all. This quirky piece is already hanging on the gallery wall.

{print by drywell}

I loved Renegade this time around and can’t wait for the holiday sale in December. Did any of you go to Renegade in SF this weekend? What did you think?

If you like this post or just want to say “hi,” don’t be shy, leave a comment below.

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America the Beautiful.

07.03.11 | POSTED BY kim IN Etsy

Happy Independence Day! I hope you all have a wonderful day of sun, fun, family, friends, food and fireworks planned.

To help with the celebration, I pulled together a collection of fun, Americana-inspired items for a new Etsy Treasury. How about those adorable little egg warmers (top row, third item)?! Too cute.

Take a closer look at my Etsy Treasury by clicking here or on the image above.

If you like this post or just want to say “hi,” don’t be shy, leave a comment below.

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