Thursday, June 19, 2014

An update: New book, Ibby award, studio, tweed & hot river (in that order)

Hello!  Been a while!  
I feel like I've been jugglin' about a million different things lately.  One of them is illustrating the next book in the series about Mói Hrekkjusvín.  Again, I'm so enjoying illustrating Mói and his friends.  The story is just hysterical!  It's coming out this Fall - so stay tuned!  In the meantime, here is a little spot from inside the book.  Mói's hand can be seen there at the bottom.  He's adorable annoying to most everyone he meets.

In other news:

I was honoured to receive Ibby's Vorvindar award this Spring!  I am truly overwhelmed by the honour.  And especially accepting them after such a wonderful speech about my work by one of my illustrating idols, Áslaug Jónsdóttir.  :)

...and Lára and I thought this deserved an "award-selfie"

I've been organising my home studio.  One of the perks of freelancing is being able to work from wherever I find a desk basically.  Since my son Dagur is out of school for the summer, I decided to work from home instead.  And I like that, a lot.  The pile of laundry in the hallway I don't like as much...

 - desk clean - 

- desk at work (I like that my kids are watching me work, making sure I don't waste my time) -

Finally after 12 months of waiting, it was Reykjavík Tweed Ride again.  
And this year, Dagur joined us.  Wearing tweed of course.

And the weather was perfect.  

And I've started to prepare for my yearly hiking trip.  A must in the preparation is soaking in a hot river with an ice cold beer.  

Enjoy your summer!!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Patterns for the 2014 stamp series..and more

Here they are, my stamp-babies united at last!  The Town Festival series is completed with this set of ten stamp sheets.  I'm one proud stamp-mama today.  

The illustration here below is from the FDC envelope that came with the 2014 series.  Each hand represents one of the festivals.  I must tell you that I'm especially fond of the hand holding the sign with the year 1932.  The reason is my grandpa.  He's from the town of Reykjanesbær (originally Keflavík). Every year he attends the town festival called Ljósanótt in Reykjanesbær.  They have the great tradition of having the people of the town, from young adults up to the oldest members, carry signs with the year they are born down a street downtown Keflavík. And my grandpa has proudly carried the sign with his year 1932.  He's the sweetest, I love him. 

Below are the patterns I made for each festival:

 Menningarnótt í Reykjavík

Humarhátíð á Höfn

Danskir dagar í Stykkishólmi

Síldarævintýrið á Sigló

..and last but not least, Ljósanótt í Reykjanesbær (with lots of 1932 signs)

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Town Festival Stamps 2014 - released today!

Today is a big day, cause today is the release day for the second set of stamps I did for The Iceland Post!  It's been a long process and purely a joyful process! I've learned so much and I'm really grateful to have been given this opportunity.  It was quite the challenge to capture the heart of the festivals onto the tiny little stamps, but I really enjoyed to get to know all the towns a little better. And yet again I had the pleasure of working with the always awesome Helga at SoupDesign who helped me with the design process.

For this set of stamps, the Iceland Post decided to also have stamps available for Europe and outside of Europe.  Here and here you can see the first set of the Town Festival Stamps, and here you can purchase the 2014 stamps! 


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Reykjavík Tweed Ride - New Painting

Reykjavík Tweed Ride 2013.  One of the best day of the year.  

For the past two years I've taken part in this glorious bike ride of well dressed people, preferably wearing tweed.  The reference for this painting was taken by my husband (I was riding next to him taking a picture with my crappy phone and almost hit that photographer right in the middle of the painting).

Once again I fall for the odd sight of seeing a ship on dry land.  Add the sight of seeing all the tweed-wearing bikers heading towards the ship, the flags, the crazy sky,'s and understatement saying I've been looking forward to paint this : I've been craving it!

A good friend asked me the other day, "What do you like doing the most", meaning what part of my job I liked the most.  At that moment I was painting this, so the answer was easy; THIS!  Painting this exact painting.  I loved every minute I spent on it, and that's not something you can say about everything you do.  It's a blessing.  I was almost a little sad when I was done with it, kind of like how you feel once you've finished a good book.

Here are a few photo's from the past two Reykjavík Tweed Rides;



 ...and here's the one where I almost hit that photographer!

Next tweed ride in Reykjavík is less than two months away.  Ride with us!!!  

Monday, April 7, 2014

A Painting of Flatey

I'm going on a little work trip this afternoon to my parents cabin in the country.  Just for a couple of days, a much needed time to focus from morning to midnight.  Above are just few necessary items needed when leaving town to work (the chardonnay and chocolate are in another box). 

I've been painting quite a lot lately.  Like always it's the best medicine for everything imaginable!

Here's a painting of Flatey in Breyðafjörður.  I took the reference photo when my brother took me on a flight around the West part of the country.  I've sailed (and flown) by Flatey, but never actually been there.  Something to add to my to-do list now that I feel like I know that little island like the palm of my hand.

Another thing on the to-do list is to paint more from that wonderful flight.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Last weeks event and new illustration: Commitment & Dedication

So this happened last week!  I handed the money I raised for SKB (Support Group for Children with Cancer) to Tjörvi Frey's brothers, Valdimar and Teitur (standing next to me on the photo above) at an event at Reykjavík City Hall.  Gheez, was I nervous or what! But the support from my family and friends who attended the event got me through it (thank you!) and boy did it feel good once it was over! I recommend doing such a thing :)  I slept well that night.  Not that my little friend in heaven isn't always on my mind, but I thought of him even more around this whole event, which felt really wonderful.

This piece here below was at a show on DesignMarch last weekend.  It was a group show where 30 designers where each given one word to illustrate.  The words where the 30 most beautiful words in the Icelandic language, according to a vote held earlier this year.  The word I got was "einurð".  In English it means "dedication" or "commitment".  So it was quite the challenge.  But since I'm not capable of illustrating anything unless there is a story around it (at least in my head), this is what I came up:

This gentleman's name is Einar.  He was not a tall fellow, but he didn't let his height get in the way of him doing what he loved the most: to cut out paper dolls.  He spent his whole life with great dedication and enthusiasm to cut out these little creatures, for his own pleasure.  That's how Einar rolled.  That's what made him happy.  Now that's commitment, right?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Giving back

Every year I make the effort on using my art to give back to the community.  Frankly, I'm just so incredible grateful that art is such a big part of my life and that now I make a living out of it, it's my job!  It's a dream come true really.  So if I can do something good with my art other than to make myself and my client happy (hopefully), that's just the ultimate kind of happiness!


When I'd finished the first set of five stamps for the Iceland Post I thought to myself if I could make some use of the original paintings from the series and not just let it pile up somewhere in my messy studio.  So in collaboration with the Iceland Post I decided to offer all the towns that now have a their own summer festival stamp, to buy the original painting to support Styrktarfélag krabbameinssjúkra barna (Support Group for Children with Cancer).  Every single króna I'd get would go to these great organisation,...and that is because of this little guy...

Tjörvi Freyr Freysson

...isn't he just the most beautiful little thing?  Tjörvi is the son of our dear friends, Elfa and Freyr.  He was a beautiful little soul which sadly only got to be 2 and a half years old.  He was diagnosed with cancer when he was only one years old and died in 2007.  The saddest day of our lifes.  But his parents, brothers and family are such strong and wonderful people, they are simply amazing and I know they have both gotten great support from and given great support to the organisation I decided to donate to for this project.  

ok....tissue please!  

To make a long story short, all the towns I talked to said a big 'YES' to buying the paintings so tomorrow I'm handing Styrktarfélag krabbameinssjúkra barna a check for 365.748 kr at an event at Reykjavík City Hall.  Tjörvi's brothers will be accepting the check in their brothers name.  I can't wait!
I want to give a big, huge thanks to those who helped out in making this happen, The Iceland Post, Innrömmun Kópavogs, the towns of Borgarfjörður eystri, Vestmannaeyjar, Ísafjörður, Dalvík and the city of Reykjavík.   :)

Below is a illustration I did a few years back and gave to Tjörvi's brothers.  It's called 'Englaprinsar'.