Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that there’s a new Drake album… and, confession time, I can’t get enough! The album was on loop basically all weekend long. It’s on Spotify, so be sure to give it a listen. Maybe that’s why today’s downloadable wallpapers feel so funky-fresh? I wanted the artwork to feel summery in color with a palette that I am always drawn to: juicy, rich, saturated tones of aqua and magenta, with with faded complementary hues. The artwork is a bit bohemian + geometric, but still in my painterly hand. I love when my art feels slightly unfinished and imperfect — I’m not one to make sure the lines are straight. I kept it loose and full of movement for this one!
Geez, it’s been WAY too long since I last shared some of my free downloadable art with you guys! Sorry ’bout that. Home ownsership seems to have zapped my creativity a bit because it’s so dang stressful. This week though… I’m trying to make sure to set aside time to draw and paint, something that helps to keep me feeling grounded. It’s been warm, too, so I’m creating my art outside which feels like the absolute best part of my day.
You guys, it’s the second Drawn + Downloadable post and I’m seriously so excited to share another with you. I was blown away by the response to the first one and couldn’t wait to share more. I’d originally planned to do this as a monthly series, but I’m thinking it’s gonna happen more frequently…
Today’s art was just a quick little doodle I did in my sketchbook actually a few years ago. I was in a bit of a geometric, linear phase, but still really bold and graphic. Can you believe I drew each of these medallions with a sharpie? I added in a wash of color to the background to make it feel a bit softer and to work in a few of my favorite colors of late: dusty lavender, grass green, and cornflower blue.
Lately, I’ve felt a bit like I’ve lost track of what inspires me and how I use that inspiration. I’ve been getting caught up on the day-to-day of running this blog and not creating nearly as much as I used to (more on that here). For example, many of you may not know that I used to be a product designer for companies like Nordstrom and Anthropologie! I still do a bit of freelance work for product design clients on the side, but I’ve noticed that I no longer doodle for the sake of doodling. Instead, I only draw if and when I need to — it that feels so weird to me. I’ve been brainstorming ways to create more and one thing that’s stood out to me during these sessions is a single question: how will I make myself accountable?
So today, I wanted to kick off a new series called Drawn + Downloadable where I share a few of my doodles with you guys and then use the artwork to create wallpapers you can download for your devices, phone, and computer. It’s hardly an original idea, but it will keep me going with this pet project of mine and hopefully even result in much, much more creativity on my end!
It’s the most wonderful time of the year — below freezing temperatures, the stress of finding the perfect gifts, and coordinating correctly with family members to ensure that quality time is shared with all. Oof. The holiday season can notoriously be stressful, but the holidays can feel magical, too. Strangers are more likely to offer a cheery ‘ happy holidays,’ pay it forward in the Starbucks line, or give back via their choice charity. Through all the stress, even the self-imposed, you can make the simple choice to focus on the good and spread merriment.
Spreading kindness in the season of giving is key no matter how big or small. Here are a few ideas for ways you can create a bit of magic and share your merry vibes:
- Make sure to tell the people you care about just how much. Not with a pricey gift, but maybe with an extra big hug or a surprise FaceTime call.
- Give a thoughtful gift. Take extra care and add some glitter when wrapping.
- Offer a warm smile to every stranger you pass. I’ve heard smiles are contagious.
- Instead of splurging on gifts or decorations, set a little a side for a charity dear to your heart.
- Be present when you are spending time with your loved ones.
The new year will be here in the blink of an eye, so why not end this year focusing on the good instead of the stress. For a daily reminder, I’ve made December’s download for your desktop and your iPhone. No matter where you look I hope you’ll be reminded to spread merry vibes only this holiday.
No, I’m not asking you to marry me or choose an overpriced white dress. I’m demanding you to start seizing your big, scary, life altering dreams.
Our minds can often trick us into saying, “No, there’s no way I could do that,” or “No, I’m not good enough.” After shaming myself into a string of negative thoughts and questions, I often arrive at two questions: “What if I never think I’m good enough to do this?” and “Why not me?” There even comes a time when the “inspirational” words “you are enough” are just not, for lack of a better word, enough. To me, the words feel like a nice pat on the head; they help me remember how precious my life is but never ignite a fire within me bold enough to do something unexpectedly amazing. I continuously hold myself back out of fear, when I should be dismissing thoughts of my insufficiency. To a large extent, saying yes to our dreams can mean saying no to our own doubts and the doubts of others.
It’s popular to be your most authentic self but, many of us, including myself, worry too much what others may think about who we are or what our dreams involve. We are torn between the pressure of being authentic, people-pleasing, and being happy while we’re at it. But your dream project, is just that, *yours*. While it’s helpful to gain feedback from others, their doubts certainly shouldn’t kill your dream. Respectively, you have to utilize their feedback constructively without letting it encourage your own negative thoughts. Plus, I need to point out, “saying no” to unnecessary responsibilities brought on by others, or yourself, can allow you more time to say yes to your own ambitions.
Saying yes more often during these internal battles gives ourselves permission to shine our brightest. You need the courage you are only able to build within yourself to make something happen. Learn how to quiet your inner dialogue long enough to see where these dreams could take you. Encourage yourself to take the risks and say yes.
Remind yourself daily by downloading this wallpaper!
October’s download captures my mood exactly. There will be wine tonight.
Maybe I’m in the mood for a glass of red because I recently purchased my first sofa and it’s taking all my willpower not to cuddle up with a blanket and a good movie. Or maybe it’s the milder temperatures I’ve been enjoying in Austin over the past few days. Deep down I know that I just need to slow down and not think for a few hours (editor’s note: yes, please).
The glorification of being busy never stops. I’m guilty of constantly feeling like there is something I need to be doing, whether it’s working on a project with a near deadline, catching up with friends, or cleaning the apartment for my own sanity. We often fill our calendars with more responsibilities only to feel exhausted. Why? We would all be more content if we choose to say, “no” more often to the items on the calendar that drained our joy, and instead choose to use our time doing the things fill us with joy.
When you choose to use your energy for the things that matter, you are taking control over where you go and what you do. Only you will feel the sense of peace that comes when being mindful of your time and energy.
I’d like to prompt you to schedule a block of time for yourself to rest and enjoy yourself in whichever way you see fit. You may soak in a long bath, take yourself for a quiet coffee date to journal (my personal favorite), enjoy a glass of wine with your favorite tv show, or invite someone you care about over to share a bottle of wine. No iPhones, no instagramming, just you and some peaceful thoughts.
To remind you to take these few seconds to slow down and enjoy yourself with a glass (or two.. no one is keeping count) of wine, I’ve made you this new wallpaper!