calendar

Happy New Year {2015}

2-color block print

It's 2015! I know, I know. I'm only 3 weeks late - but I still wanted to wish everyone a great new year. 

2014 was an incredible year and I am so thankful for all the opportunities I had. I got to:

  • Work with dream clients
  • Join Happy Happy Art Collective
  • Immerse myself in an amazing passion project
  • Travel to NYC to walk Surtex 
  • Survive my first-ever speaking engagement


And of course, I can't forget all of the new skills I learned, all the awesome connections I made, and all of the crazy things I tried - how did I get so lucky?

I am in starting the new year in a great place, and I hope it only gets better. In the first few weeks, big things are already brewing, which is making me super excited to sink my teeth in and get moving. Though - in order to make time for these new opportunities, I have decided to take a break from creating the desktop calendars. I have loved making them over the last four years, but it has been harder and harder to prioritize them as I get busier. I do want to create some desktop/mobile wallpapers from time to time, just so you have something to beautify your space, but it won't be on a regular basis. I hope you understand! 

Have a wonderful year and I am going to leave you with some hand-lettered inspiration:

Hand-lettered mantra for the #52handlettered Instagram challenge with @penandpeplum

See you around the internet!



Desktop Calendar {December 2014}

Well, in my last post, I promised more project posts - and I couldn't follow through! :-(
Unfortunately, my computer broke and it was in the shop for a week. What a bummer! I know I'm on my computer a LOT, but when it's inaccessible, it makes me realize just how dependent I am on it. Yikes. Thankfully, the awesome folks at Swink let me hang out with them for a few days and use their spare computer. That was a tremendous help, but I have to say it is nice to be back on my baby. Now to work through the mountain of projects that piled up in my computer's absence!

Now let's get to the point - the December desktop calendar! I painted this pattern a couple weeks ago and it got a good response on Instagram, so I decided to make it into this month's calendar:



To download the December calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer. Please note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

ALSO! To celebrate the holiday season, the ladies at Happy Happy Art Collective are doing 24 Days of Holiday Printables!


We have lots of fun stuff in store for you! All you have to do is follow our blog to download the goodies. And be sure to Like us on Facebook to ensure you don't miss a thing! 

Have an awesome week,

Desktop Calendar {November 2014}

Hey Hey!

Happy November! We survived October and all the Halloween goodness, and I think I was the busiest I've ever been with client work. I just put my head down and worked worked worked. Unfortunately that didn't leave much time for social media, doodles or personal projects, which makes me sad. It's that variety that keeps me fresh, inspired and challenged. I can't complain - having an abundance of work is great - but I really missed all my other creative stuff. Hopefully things will change this month!

For now, here is the November calendar, even though it's 4 days late:



November in Wisconsin means winter is right around the corner. And THAT means the animals are going into hibernation mode. I was imagining each tree is home to an animal (or family of animals). They each have their little door and welcome stoop, shutting them away from the icy elements. It's kind of a fun idea, right? 

To download the November calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Thanks for stopping by! I'm hoping to have some more posts this month - I'm excited to share some of the fun projects that have been keeping me busy!

Later!

Desktop Calendar {October 2014}

It's October! It's October! We are very excited about this here at the Balsley house. Because Stella knows we get to hang up Halloween decorations now! Plus we're planning a Halloween party this year, so that means even MORE Halloween crafting. Yay!

I decided to do a looser illustration for my October desktop calendar. These little guys were taken from today's daily doodle, so I thought they'd be perfect for the calendar as well! Plus I've never digitized any of my paintings, so it was an interesting challenge.



I hope you enjoy my happy trick o' treating jack o' lanterns!

To download the October calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Have an awesome month!

Desktop Calendar {September 2014}

It's that time of year - Back to School! Stella starts First Grade tomorrow (wha?!?) so that's all we've been talking about in our house.



To download the September calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Have a great week!

Desktop Calendar {August 2014}

Late again! I just cannot manage to get a calendar out on time these days...

This month I decided to focus on a theme that is near and dear to our family:



As you probably know, biking is a big part of the Balsley family. Stephen and I met at a bike company. Stephen raced very seriously for years, and I raced [not so seriously] for a year or two. When Stella was born, our riding became more commuter/recreational, but it is still our favorite mode of transportation. 

Earlier this year, I did a post about Stella learning how to ride her 2-wheeler. Last week, after breaking her little bike several times, we decided the universe was telling us that we probably needed to get her a bigger bike.

Stella and her new bike
Well, she loves it and has already put about 15 miles on it in the last week! Over the weekend we decided to take her on the trails to see how she did. We had a blast!

The biking Balsleys

I have to say - I am super excited about this new chapter in our lives. Having Stella bike with us is going to be so awesome. I wanted to commemorate my excitement with a desktop calendar full of bikes bikes bikes!



To download the August calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Happy biking!

Desktop Calendar {July 2014}

Well, hello!

It has been a while since I've been around these parts - actually, the last time I posted was the June desktop calendar... yeesh!

I hope y'all are having a lovely summer so far.

The July calendar, inspired by the summer sun, is a bit of a departure from my typical illustrations:



If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen a few of my daily doodles during the month of June - I called them #doodleshapes, because I started with a solid shape of color, then transformed that shape into an object with just a few strokes of black pen. Because I have been so swamped with work, I didn't get a chance to explore a lot of doodle shapes, but I wanted to incorporate that idea into July's calendar.

Utilizing blocks of color, negative space and sparse line work, I was able to illustrate these bathing beauties. I have to say - I LOVED this challenge. Plus, it has been a while since I've focused on the human form and it was a nice change from my usual subject matter.

I like this one so much, I might turn it into a print - or a series of prints. What do you think?

To download the July calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

If you're reading this in the U.S., have a wonderful 4th of July holiday!



Desktop Calendar {June 2014}

Wow, I think this is the latest I've posted a desktop calendar! My apologies. By now, you are well aware of the new month, but just in case you are still need of a new calendar, here you go!

Last week I created a space-themed pattern for a Spoonflower contest. I was going between a mid-century style and a fun, dog-themed pattern. I ended up going the more sophisticated route for Spoonflower (which I'll share in a later post), but I still wanted to flesh out the doggy idea.



Here we have Dogs in Space, complete with a rubber ball planet, a meatball moon, and alien squirrels zooming around. This pattern also fulfills another of my creative goals - creating more boy-centric art. Whenever I get a moment, I'll try to put this together as a formal pattern and/or print.

So, again - I am sorry this is so late, but hopefully you get a few weeks worth of use.

To download the June calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Have an awesome June!

Desktop Calendar {May 2014}

Hello and Happy May!

According to the calendar, it is Spring here in Wisconsin, though winter sure has taken it's time moving on. We thankfully don't have snow anymore, and there have been a few gorgeous Spring-y days, but in general, it has been a cold, rainy Spring. 

One of my favorite parts of Spring is when those first flowers break through the ground (and even snow!). For this month's desktop I decided to focus on said flowers : crocuses, snowdrops and scilla to be specific.



Something I realized when drawing these flowers, is even though I incorporate a lot of flowers in my work, I have never done a 100% floral pattern. Crazy, eh? I'm going to create a pattern out of this calendar next. 

To download the May calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Have a great May!

Desktop Calendar {April 2014}

Hooray! It's finally Spring here in Wisconsin. After what seemed like the longest winter ever, our snow has finally disappeared and the kids are zooming their scooters up and down the block.



For April's calendar I decided to illustrate a little fox jumping in the puddles. 'Cause, you know - April showers bring May flowers!

To download the April calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Oh - and if you haven't already, please sign up for the Happy Happy newsletter - a new one is being sent out tomorrow!

Happy Spring!

Desktop Calendar {March 2014}

Hello and Happy March! Is it Spring yet? Unfortunately, even though Spring is officially only a few weeks away, it looks like we're still stuck in a Polar Vortex here in Wisconsin. 

For the March calendar, I decided to focus on basketball, since the craziness of March Madness will be happening in the U.S. later this month. And who better to play a little B-ball, but some cute woodland creatures!


To download the March calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Enjoy!

Desktop Calendar {February 2014}

Well hello there!

As February is right around the corner, I have a new desktop calendar to share with you!



Once in a while I try to break out of my usual subject matter - and this time around I realized I hardly ever draw vehicles. So I decided to have a go of it. And it was really fun!

To download the February calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

And stay tuned - in a couple days I have some very exciting news to share with you!

Until then, have a great weekend!

Desktop Calendar {January 2014}

Happy New Year! I hope y'all had a wonderful holiday. Ours was jam-packed with festivities, and I was, once again, playing Mrs. Claus - working on custom Christmas orders until mere days before the big day. Though it was a really fun month, I'm excited to go back to the regular routine once again.

I can't wait to share all the projects I've been working on - but until then, the sparkly new January desktop calendar will have to suffice! 



For January, I decided to focus my illustration on one of my New Year's resolutions (and I'm sure there are MANY people out there who will have the same goal) - eating healthier! Cut WAY back on the soda, excessive desserts or loading up on the refined sugars - we're just going to eat smart. Sounds simple, right? We'll see.

To download the January calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. 

Cheers!

Desktop Calendar {December 2013}

Did December sneak up, or what? Here's your December desktop calendar to keep you up-to-date.



I was inspired by the never-ending supply of cookies and candies you can find during the holiday season. This year I'm hoping to actually have time to bake up a few batches myself! 

To download the December calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Have a great week!

Desktop Calendar {November 2013}

Popping in to give you the latest desktop calendar - November 2013. I apologize for the delay!



It's getting to be that time of year here in Wisconsin. Winter is right around the corner and the animals are busy preparing for their long nap. I thought it would be fun to show them snoozing away in their cozy burrows.

To download the November calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Speaking of sleeping, I think it's time for bed!


Desktop Calendar {October 2013}

Can you believe it? I'm actually posting a calendar on the first of the month! 

This one is inspired by my favorite thing about Fall - the falling leaves.



Though it has been relatively warm here, the leaves are starting to make their descent - and it makes me so happy!

I'm really looking forward to October. Stella has requested a LOT of Halloween decorations, so I promised her we would make some together. If any of you have some fun Halloween-themed DIY craft ideas, send them my way! 

To download the October calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Enjoy the leaves,

Desktop Calendar {September 2013}

Hello, and Happy September!

My family is now home from vacation and Stella is back in school (Kindergarten - what?!?) so I now finally have time to sit down and get some work done. First up, the new desktop calendar!



Because I've been off the grid, I have been way behind drawing up my daily doodles, as well. In fact, today I posted the doodle for August 22... and even though I am playing major catch-up, I am still having fun. Today's doodle prompt was "Bird", and I was experimenting with combining tribal patterns and exotic birds. I thought these colorful creatures could make for a fun calendar!

To download the September calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

I'll be back soon for some big news!

Desktop Calendar {August 2013}

Oh my. This is really late. I can only hope you're on vacation...or perhaps you didn't realize it was August already. So just in case you are still in need of a calendar for your desktop, here is my August offering to you:



It's a big catch!

To download the August calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Thanks so much for your patience!



Desktop Calendar {July 2013}

Howdy!

Just popping in to share the newest desktop calendar with you - July 2013!

I had so much fun drawing mushrooms a few weeks ago for class that I decided to make them the stars of this month's calendar.




As always, you can click on the above image and save it to your desktop, or you can download a version here

I'll be back tomorrow with another school post!

Desktop Calendar {June 2013}

Hello, and happy almost-Summer!

Here in Wisconsin, the trees are at their greenest, the flowers are blooming, and the bees are buzzing. I've had bees and honey on my brain between my daily doodle on Instagram and this month's desktop calendar.



I've been playing around with layering blocks of color with linework, inspired by one of my favorite mid-century illustrators, Roger Duvoisin. Also, in this composition, I painted the honeycomb hexagons and scanned them in, creating some nice texture in the background.

To download the June calendar, you can click on the above image and save it to your computer, or you can also find it herePlease note that this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Have a great week!