XO-LP // Laura Palmer


Love Letters to a New Year.

Show Your Work: BHG Valentines

You know the best way to get more people to know that (1) You are an artist and (2) You get hired to make cool stuff?

Show. Your. Work. 

In this new XO-LP series (special for the month of March) I'll show you, start to finish, how some of my favorite projects came together. 

Better Homes and Gardens Valentines

We are lucky here in my city of Des Moines to be home to the great Meredith Publishing. All kinds of creative minds converge here to make mags like Better Homes and Gardens, Martha Stewart Living and Eating Well. It's pretty amazing to have friends in this town who put their ideas in print (and then in mailboxes all over the country). 

For this particular project, BHG.com wanted printable, color-your-own Valentines for their loyal readers to download, for free, from their site for the upcoming holiday. One of their specific requests: a paper airplane for the one who is so so fly. 

So I started the same way I always do: A Papermate Flair Pen, some fresh white paper and my ScannerPro app. I work by hand, almost always, with pen and paper. I scribble all kinds of doodles on the same page, filling the corners "stream-of-consciousness" style. I draw whatever I think of... sometimes that's hearts and text that all work together within a theme, other times it's palm trees, shooting stars, celery and bottles of wine with arms and legs. 

I scan in all the illustrated pages, no matter what. I have big .pdf files of unused illustrations just waiting to come to life in some project. With Scanner Pro I can keep it all, and I do. All the celery, shooting stars, and bottles of wine with arms and legs. [If you have a project that calls for pretzels with hats- I have that too. We should talk.]

From that little corner of heart + arrow pattern, I put together an 8.5 x 11 inch print to use as decorative elements for the edges of the airplane instructions, the coloring pattern for the plane itself and another border for the Valentine Word Search! [My dirty little secret: I use Photoshop. I know, I should be better at Illustrator by now, but I'm still learning. Skillshare is helping.]

Photo cred to B HG.com

Photo cred to BHG.com

Putting it all together, with a few illustrated folding instructions, was the final step. From there, my friends at BHG.com set up this great shot of just how much fun this plane project can be. 

You can still download your free XO-LP + BHG love notes from their website. [A heart covered airplane is cool everyday, not just on February 14th.] Look for more start to finish projects in March, including a wedding, a bunch of personal stationery and a few freebies for you.