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MUGS: Society 6 vs. Redbubble

Recently I posted this image on Society 6 and Redbubble for purchase.

I ordered mugs from each website. I’ve had good experiences with both printers as a customer, but I wanted to test the difference between the mugs so that I could say “This mug is worth the cost!” Especially in these frustrating times, I don’t want to be adding negativity onto someone who bought my art to cheer themselves up.

Society6 emerged the winner. No contest.

First off, shipping and packaging: the mug from Society 6 arrived in a timely fashion, about a week after ordering. Redbubble took an extra four days. Secondly, the society 6 mug was packaged in a styrofoam mold and arrived in one piece. Redbubble’s mug was wrapped loosely in cardboard and the handle had broken into two pieces away from the mug.

Quality of printing: The Society 6 mug was brighter, and had a crisper image than the Redbubble mug. It’s subtle, but the difference is clear to me.

Ease of returning: I wanted a refund for my broken mug, and Redbubble’s site was frustrating. I was offered a replacement item or a voucher for my next purchase. I had to write a separate note requesting a refund, and was told I’d hear back in about five days. Society6 offers refunds.

Here is where the difference was: Society6’s mug is five dollars more than Redbubble’s. But it arrived in one piece, with a clearer image, and faster. As a customer, it’s worth the extra five dollars to order from Society6 for mugs. As an artist, I definitely prefer the Society 6 mug. If you are interested in purchasing a mug or print of “Hey Guys!” Here is the link: https://society6.com/autumnseybert

Thank you

Society 6 Mug: intact, crisp and bright printing
Redbubble mug, broken, a bit blurred and dull printing

Sketches, Writing

Don’t Be a Peeved Pickle, You Got This!

Child Study

Sometimes a project gets put on hold until I level up enough as an artist to take it back out and complete it. Usually this happens when I’m stuck in my head, and I start to draw the life out of everything.

And when it’s time to bring it out, I feel determined. I’m RESOLVED to draw the thing. But I’m also intimidated. I remember how frustrating it was, and I find myself stalling. “oh, I was going to work on that, but I decided to cook bacon! Uh.. I needed to fold towels! I have to run an errand! Oh does that need cleaning AGAIN? Just a few more chapters in this book, and I’ll get right to it.”

Procrastination is sneaky.

Before I know it, I’m completely stressed out because I’m not taking charge and I really WANT TO FINISH THIS, but now it’s a BILLION TIMES HARDER because it has grown teeth while I ignored it and keeps making threatening chomping noises.

Enter the drawing studies and the silly sketches. Above is a study of child. I’ve been leaning a lot towards drawing toddlers lately, and I wanted to get familiar again with bigger kids! Kids who run and play, hug their toys, get embarrassed, and grin when they figure out tying their shoes when 5 minutes ago IT WAS SO HARD AND THEY WERE NEVER GOING TO GET IT RIGHT.

*lightbulb flashes above my head*

Huh! I guess some things don’t change. Next time I want to shout “It’s TOO HARD I CAN’T DO IT! I’ll remember I learned to tie my shoes and just get to work instead of being a peeved pickle like below. ūüėÄ

 

 

Peeved Pickle

I love grouchy characters.

Illustrations

Thoughts

Starry Night, in Procreate. Working with a limited color palette

Is everyone excited about the first day of fall tomorrow? Does it still feel like summer to anyone else? It’s 85 degrees Fahrenheit today, which feels more July than September for Pennsylvania.

Side note: I never remember how to spell Fahrenheit. I always just sound it out and let spell check handle it for me. Also a sticky spelling word: Souvenir. I keep wanting to add extra “e”s to the end of it. Does anyone else have words their brains just can’t seem to wrap around?

I’ve just returned from a vacation in Maine, and I had such a wonderful time! We went to Bar Harbor and explored Acadia National Park. Hiking is a lot of fun. And even though it turns out I am allergic to lobster, there’s a lot of other great things about Bar Harbor besides lobster. Like ice cream! and a bookstore! And beautiful views! and lots of hiking with big rocks! If you like hiking and ice cream (and lobster) I hope you’ll get a chance to go there someday.

Sunrise in Bar Harbor
Sketches

Bears Cure Drawing Slumps

The last few days I’ve held my pencil and paper and ..

*blank*

It’s not that I don’t have anything to draw, I have a few projects I’m working on. It’s not like I don’t WANT to draw, I certainly do. But there’s a lack of connection there.

There are lots of reasons for getting into a drawing slump. Overthinking the process, maybe feeling sad, overwhelmed or maybe you’re just too busy right now. Whatever the reason, the pencil won’t move on the paper, and the longer the slump lasts, the harder it is to get drawing again.

The only cure I know for a drawing slump is to draw something. Seems stupid-simple right? But it’s the only thing that works for me. I just let go of all the thoughts and expectations, and I draw my feelings. This time, I don’t know why I was in a drawing slump¬†so I decided¬†to¬†draw my slump! Messy, frustrated, blank page. ¬† I finished the sketch, feeling a little better, but still slumpy. Just then, a teddy bear popped up on the page to see what I was working on and discovered nothing on the page.¬†slumpyslumpneeds-more-bearsThat's-Better!

Great suggestion, little bear! Now the slumps have been shaken off, and I’m back to drawing!

Conferences

How was the Regional Conference?

This past weekend was the Western Pennsylvania SCBWI conference. It was a really nice weekend and I got to spend time with friends and make new ones!

Friday night I attended an illustrator intensive that was all about illustrating book covers. Maria Middleton led the workshop and it was a good exercise in not over thinking your drawing,¬†and finding the joy in creating that I felt as a kid. Instead of focusing on what wasn’t working, the general attitude of the evening was “What if we did THIS?!” Exploration instead of criticism.

Conference day, there were four workshop sessions and attendees had several options for each session, giving the conference a “Choose Your Own Adventure” feel. We had a really nice group of guest faculty for the conference:

 

  • Kelly Delaney , Assistant Editor at Alfred. A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
  • Susan Hawk, Agent at The Bent Agency
  • Deirdre Jones, Associate Editor at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Maria Middleton, Associate Art Director at Abrams Kids
  • Rotem Moscovich, Senior Editor at Disney-Hyperion
  • Ammi-Joan Paquette, Senior Agent at Erin Murphy Literary
  • Alexandra Penfold, Agent at Upstart Crow Literary
  • Ariel Richardson, Associate Editor at Chronicle Books

At lunchtime, winners for the bookmark challenge were announced. Pat Lewis and I won! Here is my bookmark design. You’ve seen it ūüôā It’s also now my website header!¬†bookmark-2inx8in-h-round-front

I can’t go into too many details about the sessions I attended because the presenters worked really hard to develop them, and I won’t steal their work and give it away. Some of the sessions I attended were about what an agent does, the process of a book dummy becoming a published book, and embracing creative ideas for a book. ¬†I can tell you that if you want to¬†learn more about the ins and outs of children’s book publishing and getting to know some great people, attending a conference is a great idea. If you are looking for work, this isn’t that sort of event. ¬†Sometimes people can get work from conferences, but it’s very rare.

If you are thinking about attending a conference, I have some points of etiquette to share:

  • Don’t try to start a lengthy conversation with someone who is walking into the restroom.
  • Do introduce yourself before and after the workshop/presentations¬†to the presenter.
  • Don’t interrupt someone constantly. Everyone accidentally does this, especially when nervous, but there’s a difference between once or twice and never letting the person finish a sentence.
  • Do ask questions that are relevant to the presentation.
  • Don’t¬†play games on your phone or laptop while someone is presenting. If you are that bored, then politely excuse yourself and leave the session.
  • Do turn your ringer off on your cell phone while at the conference. You can leave it on vibrate if you are expecting an important call.

Thanks for reading! Next week, I’ll share some peeks at my picture book dummy in progress, and some sketches too. ūüôā Have a great week!

Illustrations

Feeding the Giraffes

Now our Robot Buddies are feeding the giraffes! They’re sure¬†are having a great time at the zoo!

While reading about Giraffes, I learned some fun things:

  • Giraffes are very tall! Did you know a full-grown giraffe can grow¬†as tall as 16 to 20 feet (5-6 meters)? AMAZING!
  • Baby Giraffes are about 6 feet tall (1.8 meters).
  • They have long tongues that are 20 inches or 50 cm long!

Feeding Giraffes