Category Archives: Creative

Triangle Creatives

I’m co-organizing a new group for creatives here in the Triangle! “Triangle Creatives” will bring local creative entrepreneurs (and aspiring entrepreneurs) together to spark new friendships and build a community where we can support each other as we grow our businesses. If you’re in the area and interested, please come and bring your friends!

Michelle is kindly hosting the kick-off party at Gather on Friday, April 24th beginning at 6pm. Come hungry, because the Deli-icious food truck will be there! It’s going to be super casual—just show up, hang out, and chat with other creative people. Here’s the event Facebook page where you can RSVP and read more about our goals and the amazing ladies I’m collaborating with.

If you’re an introvert like me, and this kind of thing makes your palms sweat—still come! You can hang out with me in the corner! ;)

Hope to see you there!

Triangle Creatives

^ first photo by Michelle Smith.

Triangle Creatives

Triangle Creatives

Triangle Creatives

Triangle Creatives

Mother’s Day Cards & Sketches

I’ve got some new Mother’s Day cards in the shop and all the old favorites, too. I thought I’d share the new cards with the sketches that led to the final products. I hope you like them!

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

I love the “loin fruit” card, because it works for Mother’s Day or Father’s Day. This card went through a couple phases—first this sketch I shared last month, then I was thinking of incorporating strawberries, but I ended up with peaches and bananas. They just seemed more “loiny” to me, hehe.

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

The “some animals” card is another one that’s great for Mom or Dad, assuming neither of them ate you. This card is actually a redesign of an old Mother’s Day card I used to sell…back in 2010?! That’s practically vintage.

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

This is the first card I’ve made specifically for mother-in-laws! Let me know if you’d like to see a “you’re not so bad for a father-in-law” version for Father’s Day.

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

Wit & Whistle Mother's Day Cards

(Disclaimer: Wit & Whistle is not responsible for offended or otherwise disgruntled mother-in-laws. Give responsibly.)

Bare Hug Design Process

Hopefully you’ll get a chuckle out of this. It’s the play-by-play process I went through while working on a new sympathy/just because card. I laughed so much while working on this.

It all started when my mom first saw my “missing you is unbearable” card and suggested I make a “bear hug” card. I loved the idea and tucked it away at the back of mind to stew on. After a few weeks (or maybe months?) it hit me that I should do a bare hug card instead, which would be more inappropriate and therefore more funny.

My initial thought was to feature an awkward, sweet dude with his arms outstretched for a hug—bare naked of course. I quickly decided he shouldn’t be completely bare. Tighty whities were mandatory. Here’s my first rough sketch. Check out that lettering. Yikes. It takes me a long time and lots of erasing to end up with lettering that looks half decent. My first lettering drafts usually look like they were done by a blindfolded kindergartener.

bare hug card design process

I showed Daniel the sketch. He looked horrified and told me my bare man was creepy and not at all sweet. He said I should make him look less like someone’s dad. Weird feedback, but okay. I set to work sketching all sorts of bare men with varying amounts of body hair, but none of them quite hit the mark.

At last I had my lightbulb moment—I should make a bare bear hug card! It’s so many puns wrapped up into one! Okay two puns wrapped up into one, but that’s a lot for just one card. I tweaked the creepy dude sketch above, turned him into a bear, and reworked the lettering.

bare hug card design process

After inking the sketch and adding a little polish and color in Illustrator, my bare hug design is ready to become a card. It’ll be in the shop soon!

bare hug card design process

EDIT:
Thank a bunch for the feedback everybody! I whipped up a bare man version of the card for comparison purposes. Let me know which you’d buy! Sadly I can’t stock two very similar cards, so don’t say both! ;)

bare hug design process

The Makers Summit 2015

Last weekend I went to The Makers Summit, a business conference in Greenville, SC that encourages and inspires creative entrepreneurs as they grow their businesses. There were keynote speeches, workshops, panel discussions, parties, crafts, and scrumptious foodstuffs. I’m wistfully drooling just thinking about those big piles of soft pretzels with pimento cheese.

The best part for me was getting to meet other business owners and hear their stories. Running an online business can be alienating sometimes, and it’s awesome to know there are others out there doing what I do. I flipped through the notes I took at the conference, and I want to share a few little nuggets of wisdom I jotted down between doodles.

The Makers Summit 2015

What you say “yes” to and what you say “no” to define who you become. Understand the dream you’re trying to pursue, and choose your “yes”s and “no”s accordingly. —(paraphrased) Jeff Shinabarger, Plywood People

This is a great reminder. It’s a struggle for me to focus on my goals for Wit & Whistle: to revel in creative freedom, to make work I’m proud of and have fun doing it, to maintain a healthy work/life balance, and to avoid unnecessary stress. I have to say “no” to a lot of opportunities to achieve these goals, and I have to constantly reassure myself that it’s okay not to strive for somebody else’s idea of success.

“A great product is the best marketing.” —Nathan Bond, Rifle Paper Co.

I’ve found this to be true! Every time I’ve paid for advertising it hasn’t been worth the money. So, I concentrate more on creating new and better products than on my marketing efforts. If you make high quality products that people like, they have a way of making their way around the internet eventually. It was pretty unanimous among everyone at the conference that having a strong presence on Instagram is one of the best ways to spread the word about your work. I’ve resolved to post more regularly over there.

“Creativity is earned wisdom that comes with effort, time, and failure.” —Jeni Britton Bauer, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams 

Creativity isn’t some mystical super power that only certain people are born with. It’s a muscle. You have to use it often to strengthen it and practice to get good at wielding it. I thought “effort, time, and failure” summed up the process perfectly.