Personal Project—2022 Planners

Inktober and other fun projects took a back seat this week because a personal project arrived!

Opening this box was like Christmas morning in October. I was so excited for these to arrive!

2022 calendars have been on my mind recently because I receive several wall calendars in the fall, and they are usually accompanied by donation requests.

Still, It occurred to me that a calendar would be a great piece of swag to send my clients as an end-of-the-year thanks. Instead of another wall calendar, though, I thought a planner might be more fun. My business is publishing, after all, and 2020-2021 have been far more digital than print. I’ve been itching for a box of fresh printing to arrive on my doorstep.

I wanted the planner to showcase my design tastes, and the artwork needed to be mine too. I crawled through datebooks and sketchbooks going back to 2006, and pulled some of my favorite pieces. There are a few below. Every month has one or two pieces of art, and there is room for making notes/doodles/to-do lists.

The planner contains my personal and professional brands because it is where my art and my design world meet. Twenty have already shipped with hand-written notes and, yes, a couple of business cards, to my clients from 2021. And some of these will be thank-you gifts to the people who have been so supportive to me as I’ve built Nan Mellem Publishing.

Commissioned Piece

This is Charlie.

He was a good boy, and he lived a happy life. His mom told me he used to love chasing chipmunks, so my version of his grooming scarf has a chipmunk.

This drawing has been in the works for a while.

My board dropped onto the floor in the midst of the drawing and folded the paper…argh! Hoping framing and time flatten it out nicely.

Some photos from the journey and the source photo.

McKinney Drawing Stages

The WIP photos from the project…finally in an animated GIF.

While in progress, McKinney’s eye, head and body all changd shape. His eye started out more vertical and less shaded than it really is. When drawing dogs or cats, completing the eye settles the image.

His head and body shape were too short in my initial drawing. This gave him a pointy head and a strangely foreshortened body. Keep an eye on the left side of the animation and you’ll be able to see the moment the rest of his body shows up…ha!

McKinney is a Great Pyrennes and predominantly white, so drawing him was a study in negative space. This meant I had to really watch it and not overcook the detail.

Thanks for stopping by!