28 February 2010

alice in wonderland

I keep seeing everyone else's amazing illustrations of Alice in Wonderland
from Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland."
They are all so fun!
I couldn't help but create my own Alice & the White Rabbit.
It was a beautiful day in my neck of the woods,
so I sat outside for the first time in months
and worked on her in the sunshine.
Thank you to everyone that visited my new Unconventional Ida shop
this weekend.  Since the opening on Friday, I have sold a small handful of originals~ always a terrific feeling!

On a different note, 
I have some VERY exciting news to share with you tomorrow.  
I've been a bit hush hush about it all week, but tomorrow it will be official.
I can't wait!

Have a lovely Sunday~

27 February 2010

evolution of the ghost

I have had quite a few people ask me what materials I use, and how my pieces are made. Here is a fun little blog post to answer some of the questions I have recieved while following the creation of my newest piece~ "The Ghost"

Q. {What kind of wood do you use?}

A. I use various types of recycled plywood panels. Right now I have cherry, hickory, fir, maple, and pine in stock.
Q. {You say your wood is recycled.  What do you mean by that?}

A. A lot of my pieces were rescued from my father-in-law's cabinet shop. During the brief time that I worked there, I noticed that there were tons of usable pieces that would make excellent canvases.  The wood scraps were too small for any further cabinet use, but just the right size for me. I am so glad that I was able to save them from the fire! I also received a generous donation from one of our local lumber companies. They had some large scraps of ply that had been damaged. All that my husband and I needed to do was cut them down, and discard of the damaged parts. So, every piece of wood that I work on was saved from the fire pit & discard.
Q. {What types of pen & pencil do you use?}

A. I use Sakura Pigma Micron pens in varying sizes, and Prismacolor colored pencils.  I love that the Pigma Micron pens are archival, so that my lines will stay crisp and clean for years to come.  My Prismacolor set was a Christmas gift from my husband a couple of years ago.  The colors that come from these pencils are incredibly rich and wonderful to work with.
Q. {What is your favorite type of wood to work on?}

A. I am always spoiled by cherry. It is so easy to draw on, and soaks up the color beautifully.
Q. {Have you ever made a nerdy and clearly amateur start-to-finish YouTube video of your work? Perhaps one that only uses photos and has no music?}

A. How did you know?  You can watch it below. 

Q. {Is there anything you do to make you feel that the piece is "complete"?}

A. Absolutely!  I feel like I have five steps to finishing all of my work.  After the illustration is complete, I like to use a woodburning tool around the edge.  It creates a frame for the work, and gives it an old portrait feel. I then use ink to darken the sides of the panel.  This way, there is absolutely no need for a frame.  Next,  I spray the piece with a fixative to protect the color.  I love the way the fixative brings out the grain of the wood, and creates a smooth semi-gloss finish.  A hole is then drilled in the back so that the piece may be cleanly hung on the wall.  And finally, I title and sign the back of the illustration.
Meet "The Ghost."
Q. {Did you just say that you drill a hole in the back after you've finished the illustration?}

A. Yes.  It has to be one of the dumbest things that I do.  I have yet to drill through a finished piece, but the day I do it will be very sad~ and my own fault.  I need to schedule a day to just drill holes in the back of all of my blank panels. But that doesn't sound like very much fun...
Q. {Where can I buy your work?}

A. I have an etsy shop called Unconventional Ida  where you can find my:
Original ACEOs, prints, postcards, hand-illustrated moleskine journals, pins, pocket mirrors, & magnets.  I also have a small handful of originals, and older work that I have placed on sale listed there.
The majority {and newest} of my originals are available at my Big Cartel shop.
I am constantly updating both sites. Later this evening I will be listing "The Ghost."

Thanks for following me on this journey!
I hope that you have a lovely day~

26 February 2010


The new Big Cartel shop is finally open!
{it was so fun & easy to set up}
In addition to a few that you've already seen,
I listed five new originals for you to enjoy~

new flowers~ finally!

I have been running around so much the last couple of weeks,
that I neglected the flowers in my house.
When I finally had a chance to take a breath and look around,
the "flowers" in my vases were in a sad state of repair.
So, I stopped by Habitat earlier in the week and picked up a few treats.
these mossy little stems {below} caught my eye.

They worked perfectly in our bedroom bud vases.
I also picked out these delicate wax flowers {above} for the office.
They smell absolutely amazing!
And finally, I grabbed a handful of poms. 
{not 100% sure of the name, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong}
I always pick them up~
They seem to last forever.  
Often, they still look fresh in the vase after three weeks.

I also like to put them in my hair.

The little bit of sunshine that we have had in Missoula the past couple of days has been wonderful!  I find myself longing for spring, but needing to remember that it is still February.


From her perspective, 
she could see nearly everything 
that happened in her tiny village.

24 February 2010

A few changes in the works.

Hi Everyone!
After quite a bit of thought, I have decided that it is best for me
to pull all of my originals from my etsy shop.
I will be leaving Unconventional Ida open, however,
it will just be home to prints, postcards, mirrors, etc.
The fun part is that all of my originals will be moving to a big cartel shop,
where I have more control over my pages, and receive 100% of the sale.
I try to keep the prices of my originals low 
so that they are affordable to everyone.  
By the time Etsy & PayPal take their cuts, 
I feel as if I am giving them away at times.
So, with that said, I will be making the migration on Friday.

Here's a little snippet of what is currently in my etsy shop.
Please visit Unconventional Ida to see the rest.
Have a lovely Wednesday~

18 February 2010

And the winner is...

All of the names went into the hat.
My husband closed his eyes, reached in, and drew....

Thank you to everyone who entered.
Keep your eyes out for more giveaways in the future!

Have a lovely Thursday~

15 February 2010

$5 mini prints


I have over thirty $5 mini prints listed at Unconventional Ida right now.
Each is approximately 4x5 inches with a small white border for framing.
They are printed on archival paper with beautifully vibrant ultrachrome inks~

my valentine treat


D made me a delicious valentine's dinner last night.
He started off with a spinach & cranberry salad
topped with a homemade lemon dijon vinaigrette.
Next was a hearty black rice dish 
with roasted carrots, star squash & sauteed bay scallops.
Finally, he created this kick-*ss dessert.
He whipped up a ricotta cream & fresh berries and kiwi.
{He even made the crust from scratch and rolled it into the shape of a heart.}
We topped it with some INCREDIBLE vanilla bean ice cream
from my favorite local ice cream shop~ Big Dipper.

It was all amazing!!

14 February 2010

13 February 2010

it's a giveaway!

The holiday weekend seemed like a perfect time 
for me to post a giveaway on my blog~

Meet Francis!

Francis measures 2.5x3.5 inches {ACEO size}
and is colored pencil & ink on a piece of recycled fir.
{this is an original piece, not a print}

How do you win this cute little guy, you ask?
I will be doing a drawing on Thursday, 18 February at 5pm mst.
You can enter your name up to four times~
{1st entry}
Visit Unconventional Ida, and comment on this post, 
letting me know which piece is your favorite.
{2nd entry} 
Link back to my giveaway in a blog, twitter, or facebook post.
{3rd entry}
Follow Unconventional Ida on facebook.
{4th entry} 
Follow my blog.

Please comment on this post each time that you do one of these
so that I know how many times to enter your name in the drawing.

When commenting, please make sure that 
I have a way to get a hold of you in case you win!

*Good Luck*

geisha & ginkgo


12 February 2010



"What does it mean?" she wondered. 
Her dream was vivid: a golden fish, sprouting from her head; 
a ship under a blue moon, floating adrift through a sea of aspens. 
Rebekah knew that one day she would understand the dream.

It just was not time, yet.

p.s.  If you like my work, I am currently running a giveaway on my blog.
Click here for details on how to enter.

07 February 2010

newest piece

I was supposed to be working on my thesis,
but I think that this lovely wanted to be born instead.