New Work – Buffalo Alum Magazine

penelopedullaghan_illustration_wine

I’m happy to share this new piece with you. This was for a story in Buffalo Alum Magazine about deciding on inexpensive wines – what to look for and how to choose. I did up a couple of sketch ideas, which you can see below, and the art director chose the huge wine bottle. I had a lot of fun with the colors on this piece. I love turquoise and red together. :)

penelopedullaghan_sketches_wine1

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penelopedullaghan_sketches_wine3

By |May 27th, 2015|art, illustration, works|0 Comments

geometric + organic diptychs

penelope dullaghan - pattern diptych

penelope dullaghan - pattern diptych

penelope dullaghan - pattern diptych

Still going strong on the daily pattern making exercise. I’ve been doing geometric inspired designs this week… I love how they look paired with organic life photographs. See more of my pattern work here.

Cheers!

By |May 6th, 2015|pattern|Comments Off on geometric + organic diptychs

process of play

penelope dullaghan - play process

I’ve always believed that really good work comes out of continually playing. Just sitting down to do the work as often as you can because one idea leads to another and you never know where you’ll end up. It’s the process of playing that produces ideas.

A few weeks ago I ran across this quote by Chuck Close that says it more clearly:

“The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who’ll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you’re sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that’s almost never the case.” ~ Chuck Close

I’ve been seeing this in my own progression lately. In the last few months (with Veda in school now) I’ve had more time to explore – intentionally sitting regularly to work. I’ve started working on (playing with) a series of patterns. I’ve been painting just for fun – watching that evolve has been fun. And through all that work (play) my illustration has changed. As I follow the process of play, new ideas appear.

I thought this was a fun little progression of images to show how play has affected my work:

One of the abstract paintings I started exploring:

penelope dullaghan - play leads to inspiration

An illustration for Panera sprouted from that work:

penelope dullaghan - play leads to inspiration

Out of that came the idea for pattern-making:

penelope dullaghan - play leads to inspiration

Pattern-making led me to start using bits of pattern, representational and abstract elements in my paintings based on my walks by the river:

penelope dullaghan - play leads to inspiration

And then those elements also start showing up in my recent illustration for Spirituality&Health:

penelope dullaghan - play leads to inspiration

I think I’ll keep playing and see what idea is next…

By |May 4th, 2015|art, creativity, illustration, inspiration, pattern, quotes, work-in-progress|Comments Off on process of play

new work – cover illustration for Edible Silicon Valley (and pie!)

penelope dullaghan - cover illustration for edible silicon valley

Hello! I’m here to share another cover illustration! This time it was for Edible Silicon Valley. The editor emailed me and asked if I’d do something bright and fun that had to do with the idea of “pie* in the sky”. She said this was their first ever illustrated cover, so I knew I had to do something really inspired.

*(Side note: and let’s not forget about my affinity for pie! I’ve mentioned it here more than once that pie and I are friends. In fact, for my wedding we opted to skip the cake and go for TWENTY pies instead. Best decision ever!)

Anyway, I showed her 3 sketch options, and she chose this one. I love how it turned out and the editor just emailed a few days ago and said that she’s heard rumblings of “best cover ever”! I blush. Better go celebrate with some pie! :)

penelope dullaghan - cover illustration for edible silicon valley

And here are the sketches I pitched:

penelope dullaghan - cover illustration for edible silicon valley - sketches

penelope dullaghan - cover illustration for edible silicon valley - sketches

penelope dullaghan - cover illustration for edible silicon valley - sketches

p.s. Pie!

By |April 29th, 2015|art, illustration, works|Comments Off on new work – cover illustration for Edible Silicon Valley (and pie!)

new work – cover illustration for Spirituality & Health Magazine

So excited to finally share this cover I did for Spirituality & Health Magazine! I worked with art director Sandra Salamony to come up with this idea based on the cover story of “embracing your stress” … not all stress is all bad! In fact, sometimes it gives you super-human strength when you need it. So you can do stuff like lift elephants with one hand. :) Here’s the final:

penelope dullaghan - spirituality health cover illustration

penelope dullaghan - spirituality health cover illustration

And here are the sketches leading up to it:

penelope dullaghan - sketches

penelope dullaghan - sketches

penelope dullaghan - sketches

penelope dullaghan - sketches

Oh! And S&H asked me to be the featured artist and invited me to either send a photo of myself or do a self-portrait. So I did a self-portrait (using one of my patterns from my growing patterns library)! :)

penelope dullaghan - spirituality health self-portrait

penelope dullaghan - spirituality health self-portrait

By |April 21st, 2015|art, creativity, illustration, works|Comments Off on new work – cover illustration for Spirituality & Health Magazine

Paintings for Art Gala

penelope dullaghan - watercolor mixed media painting

penelope dullaghan - watercolor mixed media painting

This week I finished up these two paintings to auction off as part of the Art Gala at Veda’s school. All money will go to the school. If you’re local in Indianapolis, come by tomorrow night and bid on them! The gala is from 5:30 to 8pm. Email me if you’re local and would like more details!

By |April 16th, 2015|art, works|Comments Off on Paintings for Art Gala

new work – Shambhala Publications catalogue cover

penelope dullaghan - shambhala sun catalogue cover illustration

Hello! I’m so excited to share this new piece with you! This was done for Shambhala Publications for their spring/summer 2015 catalogue cover, which has just been released. This is my 5th cover for them, I believe (love working with them!).

This time the art director wanted a spring feel, so I did up some sketches and he went with the spring rain idea (also my favorite). I really loved the color palette on this one… spring blues and greens with pops of reds.

Here are the preliminary sketch ideas I sent:

penelope dullaghan - preliminary sketch ideas

penelope dullaghan - preliminary sketch ideas

penelope dullaghan - preliminary sketch ideas

And just for fun, here’s what it looks like on their website now. It’s right under a picture of Pema Chödrön. I’m kind of thrilled about that. I admire her so much. :)

penelopedullaghan_shambhalapublications

 

By |April 13th, 2015|art, illustration|1 Comment

“grace during the storm” – personal work

penelope dullaghan illustration - calm during storm

Last week I finished up the cover illustration for the May/June issue of Spirituality & Health Magazine. It should be out on shelves soon. I pitched a few sketched concepts, and they went with a really fun one that I’ll share in an upcoming post.

And while they chose another sketch, I couldn’t let one of the ideas go. I just loved the imagery — a woman looking calm and peaceful while her hair was made up of a swelling and raging sea. She’s staying centered and solid even through trouble. And I especially love that the storm is a part of her. It’s not just an outside force that is happening to her.

Sylvia Boorstein (one of my favorite authors) says that the one reality you can create is the point of view that you bring to any experience. In other words, we create our own realities by how we approach and handle it. She says: “… freedom of choice is possible. Life is going to unfold however it does: pleasant or unpleasant, disappointing or thrilling, expected or unexpected, all of the above! What a relief it would be to know that whatever wave comes along, we can ride it out with grace.”

I couldn’t agree more. So even though S&H chose a different direction, I knew I needed to bring this illustration to life – for me. I hope it resonates with you also.

By |March 28th, 2015|art, everyday things, illustration|3 Comments

four recent patterns

I’m still going strong on the daily pattern making exercise. It’s been amazing to realize how this daily practice has influenced my illustration work in such a short time. I see a renewed playfulness and freedom popping up that’s been missing for a while. It’s like my creativity has woken up again. I feel on fire with it. I can’t wait to share what I’ve been working on.

In the meantime, I’ve put together four recent patterns that I thought went well together. One palette for girls and another for boys.

penelope dullaghan pattern design, daily pattern making

penelope dullaghan pattern design, daily pattern making

By |March 26th, 2015|everyday things, pattern|1 Comment

ocean inspired

shells

Last week we took a teensy weensy mini vacation south to thaw out after all the freezing temps here in the Midwest. We were intending for it not to be so short, but our flight was cancelled because of snow and we ended up only having one whole day to soak up as much sun as possible.

But it was enough. We spent the day collecting bits from the ocean and digging in the sand and watching wild dolphins. In a word – lovely.

I collected the bits (above) and brought them home with me. And then did a few patterns inspired by the ocean (below).

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By |March 9th, 2015|everyday things, pattern|Comments Off on ocean inspired