Prints on Wood Blog

  • Prints on Wood - Jenga

    There is a not a job to big or too small that we do not tackle with the same enthusiasm.  Such as when Sharon Yamamoto at Jenga, (yes that Jenga), approached us to custom print some game pieces she was sending to Troy Liquor Bar in NYC, we said, "Why, YES! We can do that!"

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    In some of the hipper bars, you may notice people at tables playing Jenga, and the bars provide the game pieces. They may as well be customized and become an extension of the bar's branding. Creative minds appreciate a creative approach!

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    These turned out great and you can see how Troy's logo compliment the iconic Jenga logo nicely. Troy better expect that some of these pieces may end up in a tourist or two's pockets as a souvenir.

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    Printing on wood allows a dimension not usually found in traditional print media. If you have a unique use for printed wood, we'd love to hear it. Let us help your creative mind's ideas manifest with a Prints on Wood project today!  Contact us here, for a custom quote.

  • Chopping Block: Aunia Kahn

    We are excited to collaborate on another upcoming fine art print release with artist, Aunia Kahn, entitled Frozen Era.  Aunia is a figurative artist, photographer, creative entrepreneur and inspirational speaker whose interests in tarot provides us with some hauntingly alluring art. We were able to catch up with her and talk about her impressive resume and inspirations.

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    POW:  The dark color palette and facial expressions of characters used in your paintings create an overwhelming sense of melancholy. Would you say that these works are a reflection of your-inner self, or is this just an aesthetic preference?

    Aunia: Thank you for taking the time to interview me, I appreciate it and appreciate working with POW.

    My art has changed over the years. If you look at older works they have a much more darker palette and also the subject is much more melancholy, however, my newer work over the last 2 years shares a brighter palette with the similar look, I feel more thoughtful and contemplative than melancholy. The older work was a reflection of a 10 year undiagnosed illness that left me searching for answers as doctors told me nothing was wrong and I was crazy; until I almost died in 2012. It was a very dark time in my life, especially after overcoming years of child abuse and thinking as an adult I would have a pretty normal life. Overall, the circumstances brought me to art, a deep love of mine and also the ability to help so many people. So as much as it was a dark place and reflected very heavy in my artwork, it was a place I learned so much from; and in a way I am thankful. To be on the other side of the illness now, I can see it’s been life changing. As I heal I see my color palette getting more and more bright, the subject will always be a bit dark no matter how healthy I am since I happen aesthetically like the juxtaposition of the two.

    Screen shot 2014-08-21 at 11.44.27 AMFrozen Era by Aunia Kahn

    POW: When I view the artistic interpretation of the female form the point of view of my male colleagues, they seem to base their style on personal preferences, putting an added emphasis on physical qualities or characteristics they find attractive in the opposite sex. As a female artist, is your approach similar when creating your character based works? If not, could we please have a little insight into your process?

    Aunia: Good question. I base almost all artwork off photographic references of myself, so I am acutely aware of the form beforehand since the form is me and has not changed too much over the years.  However, I find my focus more on the stances and postures of the characters, as well as the narrative aspect of the work rather than “attractive” characteristics of the characters. For me as a female artist, I find the female form very attractive and my focus is very strongly focused on the eyes. I find them the most captivating in both sexes, which seems to be where a lot of my attention goes. The gaze is very important for the mood in my work.

    Dominteria-crop-3x4.jpg.thumbnail_3Dominteria by Aunia Kahn

    POW:  While observing the female characters in you work, they seem to look like a combination of Elvira, Peggy Bundy, and Jessica Rabbit (coincidentally, all of whom I had a 3-way crush on while growing up in the 80s). While most men can appreciate this, I curious as to how women in general react to your work? Has anyone every accused your works of creating an unrealistic portrayal of women?

    Aunia: That’s quite the compliment, thank you!  Also, thank you for this question. I think it’s an important one to address. Over the years I can’t say anyone has accused me of creating an unrealistic portrayal of women, yet it would not surprise me that it could come up or has come up without my knowledge. Personally, I don’t feel my work has an unrealistic portrayal of women since it’s modeled off actual reference pictures of me, and are proportionally close to my size. I do however understand that we live in a society where women are expected to be overly thin, have big boobs and a well-rounded bottom, be perfect and airbrushed until she looks almost unreal. It is my hope people will continue focus more on the messages and storytelling aspect of my work. No matter what you do in life someone somewhere will find a flaw with it, you have to move past it and not let it bother you. Women seem to love my work and feel empowered by it, and from what I have gauged over the years I have more female collectors than male. Go figure!

    Embodying_the_Sacred-crop-3x4.jpg.thumbnail_3Embodying the Scared by Aunia Kahn

    POW: When I was conducting research for this interview, Google describes you as an "artist, author, singer, lyricist, web designer, graphic designer and photographer", which happens to be a VERY impressive resume! If you were forced to choose only one of those as an occupation for the rest of your life, which one would you select and why?

     Aunia: Oh Google! It’s funny you say that because I don’t write music or sing anymore because of my past illness wrecking my voice.  But I have added to the list being gallery owner at Alexi Era Gallery, an inspirational speaker and weekly podcaster hosting Create & Inspire, and of course I am still doing those other things too. Like a lot of artists I have a need to explore, I love to learn and try new things. If I had to choose just one it would be an artist because it can crossover into anything else if you let it.

    Screen shot 2014-08-21 at 11.40.24 AMLost and Found by Aunia Kahn

    POW: You first decided to collaborate with Prints On Wood a few months ago with the limited edition wood print of your painting, Lost & Found. Could you please give us some background into the context of this image?

    Aunia: "Lost and Found" is an artwork featuring a dog from Stray Rescue Saint Louis that I had the honor of painting a portrait of in a previous fundraising art show at the Saint Louis Contemporary Art Museum this summer. I fell in love with him and felt I needed to feature him in my work again, almost like a spirit animal of sorts. In times when I feel lost, or searching for answers I find peace with animals and nature, it always brings me such joy. This was one of the only pieces that had ever featured a dog, which happens to be one of my favorite animals. Well, to be honest, I love them all.

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    After the limited release of Lost and Found, we are excited to once again collaborate with Aunia Kahn on a new print release, Frozen Era, which will be signed, numbered and hand embellished.  The prints will be available during a five day timed release beginning Friday, September 5th at 12 pm PST.

    For more information on Aunia Kahn, visit http://auniakahn.com/

  • App review: piclab hd

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    You know those artistic looking motivational posters that simultaneously make you want to puke and make you want to stop spending your nights in bed with Netflix and pizza? Yeah, those. Now, with the help of PicLab HD, you can make your own kick-in-the-ass posters.

    I should also note that these are essential pieces in a popular decorating trend currently sweeping the bedrooms of teenage girls across America. If you don’t believe me, look at Pinterest.

    Considering that these make you kind of hate yourself, they are also rather fun to make. It’s hard to go wrong with PicLab’s multitude of choices, and if you do, it’s digital, so no one has to know.

    If you don’t fit into the teenage girl demographic, don’t worry. This app still has merit, which is one of the main reasons that I actually considered it. For all of you DIY types, this has the potential to create great cards, and actually features pages of artwork specifically dedicated to occasions like weddings, Mother’s Day and Christmas.

    There are two versions of PicLab, the free version and the HD one for $1.99. For the sake of research, I downloaded both, and was unsurprised to find that the HD version is far superior. That’s not to say that if you’re a cheapskate or just dabbling, you can’t get by fine with the free one, but there are far less design options and the majority of them are in-app purchases. To be clear- this review is on the HD version, which I highly recommend.

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    This is the first screen that you see. Well, replace my photo gallery with your own, but you get the picture. Helpfully provided is the ‘Inspiration’ button, which is a link to the Instagram feed of everyone else’s beautifully illustrated words of wisdom. Check it out, because it will give you a much better idea of the options that PicLab provides you with.

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    Here’s a hint: choose your most boring photo. Ok, not your most boring photo, but one that makes a good background. If it’s too busy, then it’s probably better suited to be an actual photograph and not covered in text and other stuff. This is a shot of the Smithsonian Castle in Washington D.C. that yes, I actually took. Now, first order of business is to mess with the photo.

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    In terms of editing, PicLab is pretty basic. You have your crop and rotate, your brightness, saturation, exposure, etc. Then again, the picture just the background, it’s not meant to be the focus of your creation. And, as you can see above, the basics do just fine. If you’re really picky, feel free to run your picture through another photo editing app first, but I personally saw no need to. Also provided were several light effects, which I didn’t choose to use on this particular photo, but that are cool.

    Okay, that was the boring part. On to the meat of the app, which is the artsy stuff. By now, you probably have at least a general idea of how you want your poster to look (and if you don’t, then go back to the ‘Inspirations’ button on the first screen). Chances are you’re using an inspirational quote of some sort, though other viable options include improving scrapbook photos, creating wedding announcements, etc. Any way you choose to use PicLab, you have plenty of options.

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    I counted 77 fonts, and didn’t even bother trying to count the number of doodles and other things available. While we’re still on the topic of text, though, make sure you experiment a little. You can curve the line of text, shrink or expand it, change the alignment, create separate text blocks with different fonts/sizes, etc. I kept mine relatively simple, all things considered.

    When you’re reasonably satisfied with the results, move on to the tab labeled ‘Artwork.’

    Here’s where you can get really creative. There’s all kinds of doodles, pre-done labels, banners, and other things that you can add to your picture. Let it be known that mine almost had a whale on it.

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    Like I mentioned before, there’s all kinds of themes to the artwork. Love, summer, cartoons, moms, it’s all there. There is a small catch here though. Just about half of the categories are in-app purchases, denoted by a tiny dollar sign in the top right corner, which you can choose to buy separately (as a category) or you can just buy all additional artwork at once for $2.99. Since I already paid for the app, I was perfectly happy to stick to the stuff that was included, which proved to be plenty. That being said, there are some really cool things available for purchase.

    Again, I decided to stay relatively simple, and just chose to add a little texture to my creation. Once you are happy with yours (read: tired of messing with it), the blue checkmark in the upper right saves your poster and gives you the option to share it in a variety of ways.

    Remember, at Prints on Wood.com, you can upload your photo via camera roll, Facebook or Instagram.

    Here’s my finished product:

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    And I really can’t wait to see it printed on wood.

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    Looks pretty good if I don't say so myself!  Printed on natural gloss it looks like it would fit in just fine next to the posters in my professor's office.

    All in all, I would give this app 3 stars out of 4, and a recommendation to my friends.

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    There were many positives, including the numerous uses for the app (you now know where my Christmas cards are coming from) and the design options that it gave, as well as the inspiration for those of us who weren’t entirely sure where to start. The app itself was fairly intuitive, and though it took a little getting used to, once I figured out what everything did, it was easy to navigate. The reason that this app doesn’t get that fourth star, though, is those in-app purchases. Come on, guys. I already paid for your app. Additionally, there were several annoying freezes and other bugs that need to be worked out to make the app more user friendly. For example, a few times I had trouble with moving both font and art around the screen, which got rather frustrating.

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    For more information on PicLab HD, please visit: http://piclabapp.com/

  • Board & Brew - Prints on Wood tables

    Last week we released the first limited edition Prints on Wood table collaboration with Shepard Fairey, but that may have not been the first Prints on Wood table.  The owners of Board & Brew wanted something different and unique for their customers and came to us with an idea... a custom printed table top.  They came to the right place!  We love new and fresh ways to use prints on wood.

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    Board & Brew is a Southern California staple that’s been serving up delicious homemade sandwiches and local craft beers since 1979.   Known for their laid-back surfer themed locations, displaying artwork and action shots on several of their restaurant tables fit in perfectly.

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    Printed directly on the wood table tops then coated with a water proof coating to withstand the high use of surfers and beach goers enjoying their beer and grub.   As you can see from the pictures, the results were amazing!

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    So far, Board & Brew has six locations in Southern California and are currently in the planning stages to open more in the next year.   Serving a simple straight forward menu ranging from turkey breast sandwiches to veggie and roast beef, there is something for everyone.

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    To check out the tables in person, head over to their San Clemente location and tell them Prints on Wood sent you. (I am not sure it will do much for you, but it's worth a try!)

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    For more information on Board & Brew, please check out their website at http://www.boardandbrew.com/

  • Chopping Block: Marie Larkin

    Recently we were lucky enough to peer inside the mind of Marie Larkin, an Australian pop surrealist artist known for her beautifully strange paintings of girls in a most unexpected yet entrancing way. We chatted about her inspirations, the transition from embroidery to fine art and a few things inbetween. She was able to give us great insight into the mind of a professional artist and was also kind enough to offer some words of wisdom for young aspiring artists.

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    POW: Your artwork is stunning and beautiful! Seeing the doll like faces placed in those dark settings was very unexpected and intriguing.  It makes me pause and ponder the what, where and why of each character in your piece.  Do you find  yourself going through the same process while creating them?  Is this something left to our imagination to create or is there a message enveloped in each piece for us to uncover ourselves in our own way?

    Marie: Thank you very much for your kind words! My female characters give the images their narrative and a humanity.  I just can’t paint a work without one, it just feels like it’s missing something.  At times they have been innocent , shy and sweet but more often they are darker, bolder, and more recently, aloof and quite the cynics. When I paint each one I make a connection with her, with her mood and I try to imagine what she might be thinking or feeling. I guess there is usually an aspect for the viewer to uncover in the mood or narrative in the compositions.

    POW: Have there always been strong female characters at the center of your works? Or is this something that developed over time? If so, was there another central theme/character that dominated your work at first?

    Marie: When I was a little girl I drew big eyed girls, but I think that my world has been a very female one all my life and my construct of the world is probably  influenced by that. I went to a private girls school in Sydney, I never had any brothers or male cousins, my father was much older as a parent, and I spent eleven years of teaching at an all girls school from 2000 to 2011. I find the female so familiar, but I think women are so terribly complex and capable of feeling many things at once. It makes them interesting as subjects, even if they are stylized in form. They give me the opportunity to explore sexiness, innocence, capriciousness, sadness, longing.  I have used their attire in my latest series Paradisum Curiosum, in a kind of Steel Magnolias manner. Women can be so soft and sensitive but also have that steely hard grit underneath. So the organzas and velvets are juxtaposed against the tarnished metal of their armor.

    DeathGhost Rider by Marie Larkin

    POW: There’s no doubt that many fairy tales and popular stories influence your work. Which would you say is your favorite and why?

    Marie: I think nursery rhymes interest me the most. Many have such dark meanings, like Ring a Roses, or Pretty Maids All in Row. I love the idea of farmers wives running amok with knives! In Jack and Jill, after Jack falls and tries to mend his head with vinegar and brown paper, Jill laughs at him for being ridiculous and cops a beating from her mother. Hence my ending in Jack and Jill where she takes her revenge. The nursery rhymes were great to work with because there was already that familiar narrative  but the opportunity to really ‘play’ and use irony and humour in reinterpreting them.

    POW: What motivates you to begin a new project? Is there a routine that you follow in order to start painting?

    Marie: I usually have lots of ideas floating around in my head for my next body of work. I tend to filter these as I work on a current series. I never really finish a series, I always have images I never get to do, but you just realize it’s time to move on to something new. With Paradisum Curiosum, my current series, I was walking in the Melbourne Botanic Gardens and I was reminded how much I used to love walking through the gardens in Sydney on my way to the Art Gallery of NSW. The quiet beauty and mystery of the meandering gravel paths through foliage and manicured lawns. I thought what a wonderful setting for my females and as I walked I began to imagine the possibilities for them in this setting.

    I follow the same artistic practice that many artists do in creating a body of work. It begins with research of visual references, and perhaps the work of other artists. Then drawing, which can be anything from ‘thinking out loud’ with a pencil, to finished sketches I’ll sell. Before I start painting I usually do a huge clean up in the studio and go through all my references, putting them into different groupings, I also prime my canvases about 6 times sanding in between.

    Whispered-Autumn-EveningWispered Autumn Evening by Marie Larkin

    POW: I read your art career began with embroidery, achieving many accolades and awards, but then moved into painting and sculpture.  Was there a specific event or moment that created the shift from embroidery to fine art painting and sculpting? Do you still embroider?

    Marie: It did, and yes I actually achieved a great deal of success with it. I began the embroidery when my third child was born and I decided not to return to Visual Arts Teaching. Although time consuming it was small and easily manageable with young children. We only had a tiny house so I could put it away under the couch etc to be picked up again later. In the later 1990’s I had to return to work as the children were at an age when we just needed the extra income, so I had to leave full time art. I have always been the senior art teacher at the schools I taught and with that comes a great deal of responsibility so my professional art practice had to take second place. You need to put that energy and focus into what your students are creating. In 2009 I began to wind back my teaching to part time before resigning altogether so I could once again pursue my art. The time for embroidery had just passed. I had done everything I could with that medium. I don’t embroider anymore. It was so fine, 196 stitches to every square centimeter! I could never do that again. I also think the stories I told with that medium, which were intimate tales of our ordinary life were particularly suited to embroidery but not painting. When I took up my art again I started with painting/collage but my interest in the painting and my desire to achieve greater mastery over it took over.

    First-Day-of-SpringThe First Day of Spring by Marie Larkin

    POW: Do you remember your first painting that you sold?  Did it feel different from selling the embroidery pieces?

    Marie: I think the first painting I sold was to a work colleague but she bought the work because she really liked it and I was pretty excited. Whereas I was always surprised if the embroideries sold because they were so personal, so intimate. People really identified with the images and themes of motherhood and family but the images were of us, so I never really expected them to sell. The painting I do now, I do make to sell. I have no trouble parting with it and indeed want to give others something they will love for their walls and treasure for years to come.

    POW: It seems teaching art, which ever the genre or platform, workshops or formal classes, has been an important focus in your life.  From a teacher’s perspective, what advice can you give aspiring artists?

    Marie: I spent thirty years on and off, teaching and it was the most rewarding thing. I loved every minute. To be involved in young people’s lives during their teenage years is such a privilege. It is particularly so with visual arts because it allows a closeness you don’t get with non creative subjects. I was very close to the girls I taught and they were so very, very kind to me. Many of my ex students still ask for advice and let me know how they are going. It’s very special. I used to tell students you don’t have to be gifted to do this subject, you just have to have a god almighty need to ‘play’ with stuff and have something you want to say! My advice is always work hard. Hard work, persistence and self discipline is needed.

    The-Bee-CharmerThe Bee Charmer by Marie Larkin

    POW: I see you have an upcoming exhibit at the Flower Pepper Gallery in Pasadena this December in celebration of their 3rd year anniversary.   Can you give us a sneak peak of what we can expect to see at the show or share the theme of your pieces?

    Marie: Because I am still very much completing the work for the opening of Paradisum Curiosum, I am only just beginning to think about upcoming shows and commitments. I may do a piece following on my botanical setting or it might be a good opportunity to begin exploring my next theme which is going to be quite sad and nostalgic, I think. It’s about being left out or left behind, about not being included, aloneness and regret.

    Thank you so much very much for this opportunity, I really appreciate it and thank you for your wonderful questions and reading about my art!

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    Thank you Marie, we are glad to have you apart of the Prints on Wood gallery.

    For more information on Marie Larkin, visit http://www.marielarkin.com.au/

  • Shepard Fairey x Prints on Wood - coffee Table/Art piece

    Releasing this Friday!  Prints on wood is collaborating with Shepard Fairey to produce a unique art piece that can be used as a coffee table or hung on your wall, available for $5000.

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    A project that was first sparked back in 2009 at the Sea No Evil Art show where five custom wood coffee tables featuring Shepard Fairey's art work first debuted, now has transformed into this multipurpose art piece.

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    Made 100% by hand, the art piece is first created by a simple print on wood.  "Lotus Women", chosen from Fairey's recent art exhibit, 50 Shades in Black, is printed on 1/2" maple wood, then hand stained.  A steel frame is then constructed by hand to fit the 38" x 38" wood print, finished with a metal stain then waxed to prevent rusting.  The table includes easily removable magnetic legs that can be stored away if hanging the art piece is preferred.

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    Once the wood print is secured into the metal table, a unique stenciled vinyl record is sealed on top of the wood print with a layer of resin.

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    Limited to an edition of 25, each art piece is signed and numbered and will be released on Friday, August 22nd around 12:00 pm PST exclusively at Printsonwood.com.

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    Because of the unique nature of this project, each art piece is created on demand and will have a two to three week production time.  If all 25 pieces are sold immediately, a longer production time will be required.  After purchase, your approximate date of delivery will be emailed to you.

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    For more information on Shepard Fairey, please visit: http://www.obeygiant.com/

  • App Review: FxCamera

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    Have you ever wanted a quick fix filter to make a photo get just the right look?  How about an app that offers creativity through a fisheye, symmetrical, or artsy Andy Warhol effect with the push of a button.  I think we have found just the app, FxCamera does all of this and more for FREE!  Let's see if this app preforms as well as the pay apps we have reviewed.

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    Unlike most apps I’ve come across, this one doesn’t have a single home page but instead gives you the several camera options right off the bat, which I thought was a bit cool.  You can scroll through five options- ToyCam, Instant, Symmetric, Fisheye and Normal+.   On their website they offer show an additional option "Poster" which adds a Andy Warhol look, maybe its coming soon?

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    As you look at each option, there are two icons at the bottom of the screen, camera icon and a stack of photos.  The camera icon opens your camera on the iphone, the stack of photos right next to the camera icon, is where your past pictures used with the app are saved.

    I chose the first ToyCam option and was immediately shown the camera screen.

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    This screen works very similar to the native iPhone camera where you can choose to take a picture with flash, rotate to the front camera, etc. One interesting feature of the app was the ability to record sound while photographing, which is what that little microphone to the right of the camera icon is for. I don’t really know why you would want to record sound with a picture but hey, I wanted to give it a try anyway. To my disappointment, this feature didn’t quite work and after several failed attempts, the app crashed.

    Instead of taking a picture I went and looked for one in my camera roll, as usual. Being the crazy cat lady that I am, I chose a picture of my little one eyed baby, Goonie.photo 5

    At this screen I became a little disappointed by the lack of customization options that you are given, which in this case is the option to place a border around your picture and turning on and off the brightness. Not very versatile if you ask me.

    One quick look around the other features such as Instant, Symmetric, and Fisheye confirmed my assumption, the app isn’t customization friendly. I can’t tweak anything!

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    photo 7Fisheye Filter

    I decided to go with the Retro filter under the ToyCam option. By clicking the checkmark arrow directly underneath the picture, it saves the image to your phone’s camera roll.

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    The next screen you are shown is “Share Photo” where you can write a caption and then share on Facebook and Twitter.photo 9

    Because I have one too many pictures of my cat on social media and don’t want people un-friending me, I chose to forgo this option. I did give it a try however, just to see if the app was able to connect to Facebook smoothly and was pleased to find that it indeed did!

    Overall, I gave this app a wood rating of 3. It was very easy to use but I didn’t like the fact that I couldn't personalize any pictures further than just choosing a filter and brightness, but given that it was a free app, what it did have was worth the time and effort.

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    Let's see how it printed on wood! Goonie POW

    The finished piece was a 6" x 6" print with natural gloss finish, which turned out to look pretty neat despite the app's limited customization features.

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    For more information on FxCamera please visit: https://fxcamera.com/

  • Chopping Block: Baby Tattooville 2014

    This year we are excited to be apart of Baby Tattooville 2014, an annual interactive art event that will converge upon the historic Mission Inn Hotel and Spa in Riverside, CA on October 3rd through the 5th. Limited to just 40 guests, Baby Tattooville gives each participant a unique opportunity to be apart of the intimate, creative process with the guest artists which this year includes Tara McPherson, Joe Sorren, Brian Smith, Eric Fortune, Brom and Laurie Lee Brom.

    We were able to grab a few minutes with Bob Self, founder of Baby Tattoo Books, who also happens to be the brain child behind the eclectic event.

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    POW: How did you come across the idea of starting Baby Tattoo? What was your inspiration for such a quirky name?

    Bob: My sister came up with the name Baby Tattoo based on my baby (at that time) daughter's temporary tattoos. I thought the name was both catchy and indicative of the type of genre-bending books I was interested in publishing.

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    POW: Your "cast of characters" includes some well-respected artists such as Jeff Soto, Lola, Luke Chueh, Travis Louie, Brian McCarty to name a few, when and where were some of these connections established?

    Bob: I am honored to have published books by many artists I greatly admire. Early on, when I began publishing books, I would introduce myself to artists and let them know that I was interested in publishing their work. As my reputation as a publisher grew, some artists began to approach me about publishing their work. Regardless of who contacts who, productive relationships are usually the result of respectful and enthusiastic communication.

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    POW: This years Baby Tattooville runs October 3rd-5th in Downtown Riverside. What can we expect to see during this year’s event?

    Bob: The ticketed event Baby Tattooville is cloaked in a bit of secrecy. Over the course of the three day, immersive retreat at the Mission Inn, artists and attendees create and celebrate art in a multitude of ways. Eating, drinking and socializing are interspersed with art discussions and demonstrations. A good time is had by all. There's even a collaborative Art-Jam painting created by all of the participating artists over a 24-hour period. Baby Tattooville attendees receive a high-end art print of this collaborative painting as a souvenir of the event. For those who are not able to purchase one of the 40 tickets to Baby Tattooville itself, there is a related exhibition at the Riverside Art Museum that is open to the public. During the weekend of Baby Tattooville, there is an artists' reception at RAM with all of the participating artists in attendance. This RAM exhibition provides some public access to what is an otherwise private event.

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    POW: Did you always have a passion for the arts or was it something you just stumbled upon?

    Bob: My first real connection to art was through book illustrations and animated films. To this day, I am still very attracted to figurative and narrative art.

    POW: How would you describe the art that Tattoo Baby advocates?

    Bob: I sometimes call the type of art I like "strange fun art". I have also referred to the type of art I like as art that demands one's attention… art that achieves the goal of the classic playground taunt, "Made you look!"

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    POW: How was your experience at Comic Con this year? Did you meet any new artists you would be interested in working with?

    Bob: I love the energy and epic scope of Comic-Con. I spent most of this year's Con within the 10'x20' confines of the Baby Tattoo booth, but I managed to meet an astonishing number of longtime associates and newfound friends within that small space over the course of four and a half days. Comic-Con is always a journey of discovery.

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    POW: Your other event "Beyond Brookledge" was extremely successful this year and was also held in Downtown Riverside. How are "Beyond Brookledge" and "Baby Tattooville" different?

    Bob: Baby Tattooville is a celebration of the visual arts. Beyond Brookledge is an epic (yet intimate) magic and vaudeville show. Both events share a similar structure, and both are remarkably entertaining weekends; but one is all about fine art and the other is all about theatre. Of course, it can be argued that art is show business and that show business is art. I certainly like to blur the lines between the two.

    ________

    Thank you Bob for giving us a little bit of your time to talk about this spectacular event.  We are even more excited to be apart of it this year.

    For more information on Baby Tattoo Books, visit http://www.babytattoo.com/

    For more information on Baby Tattooville 2014, visit http://www.babytattooville.com/

  • App Review: Mextures

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    Want to add some texture to your photos?  How about a mix of textures to create the prefect filter formula?  If you could how could you capture the perfect mixture of textures and use it over and over again on all your photos?  You have probably guess by now, but this weeks app review is on Mexture.  An app that allows you to create your own unique blend of texture and save it to use over and over again.  According to the app it will make your photos look like a picture in an Urban Outfitters catalog.  So let's get started!

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    The home screen is designed beautifully and has several options for you to play around with. The first icon, the Erlenmeyer flask, is where your saved formulas are located (we'll get to that later), the lightning bolt takes you to an inspiration page, the newspaper icon takes you to a news page, and the question mark icon allows you to read a tutorial, rate the app, etc.

    The other icons are the camera, which allows you to take a brand new picture and the library icon, which will open your camera roll. I have a plethora of pictures in my phone so I open up a picture I took at the Japanese Garden in Portland. Because I’m going for that Urban Outfitters look, I choose some random pine trees. Pretty boring looking if you ask me…..let’s see what this app is capable of!photo 2

    Once you crop your picture, you are then presented with different Textures and Formulas. If you had opened the tutorial in the home screen, you would know that textures are added as layers to your image to create a unique look and formulas are saved combinations of textures and/or polish. I stick to the textures and scroll down to “Landscape Enhance”, since my picture is part of a landscape, after all…

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    In this screen you’ll noticed you are faced with a number of icons and options. I was a bit overwhelmed when I first saw this but once you get to know each icon, you’re all set. Remember to also keep referencing the tutorial page if you need help (I did).

    The first step would be to choose a texture from the many options on the bottom before handling anything else. I chose the Winter Dusk texture and then went on to the first magic wand icon, also known as the blending tool. This tool basically allows you to add a layer of different tones of light and dark to your photo.

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    Once you choose a blend option you are taken back to your work screen. The next icon you’ll see is a rectangle with a number on it. This tells you how many layers you have on one picture, which is where the next icon comes in. The third and middle icon is a plus sign where you can add another texture on top of your already existing one.  I added like 4 of them in one and noticed that my rectangle no longer said 1, but 4. One quick look in this section and I’m able to see all the layers that I’ve added and I can then turn them off and on with the eye icon (similar to Photoshop).

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    The fourth icon you’ll see are some adjustment knobs, also known as “polish”. This will give you several adjustment preferences to polish up your pictures, including Film, Black&White, Exposure, and more…easy enough.

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    The last icon looks like a little Erlenmeyer flask (for those of us who remember chemistry) is the formulas option, which as you recall are saved combinations of textures and/or polish. There are guest formulas from people that have created their own and shared it, landscape formulas, black and white, Spring, etc……If you click this option you will be faced with a screen asking if you’re sure you want to remove the edits you’ve already worked on. For the purpose of this app review, I clicked yes. photo 10

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    Since I chose a winter formula that made my trees look really dark and gloomy, so I had to start all over again.  Having followed the steps again, I came up with this.

    FINAL

    Once you’re satisfied with your picture you are given the option to save to your library, share on Twitter, Mail, Instagram.

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    The “open with” preference allows you to open it in any apps you may already have installed which for me was Tangent, Lory Stripes, and even Tumblr. You can also choose to save the current formula and name it for later reference. These can be found in the formulas tab under “My Formulas”.

    I gave this app a wood rating of 4 because it was easy to navigate and had an extensive design palette.

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    Now, let's see how it looks printed on wood!  The image file was big enough to create a print as large as 24"x24" wood print.  Printed on Natural Gloss finish, the wood print turned out really cool!

    Mextures_Tree

    For more information on Mextures please visit: http://www.mextures.com/

  • Sony Playstation X Prints on Wood

    We were recently contacted by Sony Computer Entertainment America, or to you gamers out there, Playstation! They had a interesting project and wanted to know if we were "game".

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    They were planning a move to a new workshop building where the magicians that create your games would thrive and be motivated. If you've ever wondered how cool a place of work could look, this went past that by a few levels. Many areas on the walls and partitions where made of metal, but we will get to that later.

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    One of the projects was to print 64 bit type artwork renderings of each employee face onto pieces of wood. Those pieces were backed with our magnetic sheeting so they can attach to the metal areas on the walls when you enter the building.

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    They are also placed on the outside of each employees work station. We also printed their names on a contour shape, and the artwork to each of the games they have worked on. Those were placed at their work area as well. Each piece is full color, detailed and movable. Sure beats the old engraved nameplate your dad had on his desk at work back in the day!

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    Another part of the project was one big 72" x 40" printed wood piece with the logo "Santa Monica Studio", That was backed with magnet material, deconstructed, with each piece given a number on the back.

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    The pieces were scattered around the new office for employees to find during a treasure hunt and reassemble on a metal wall using corresponding numbers to place the pieces correctly. If the photos are any indication, it was a fun day and the results were awesome!

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    We are very happy to be part of such a original project with Sony on an important day for the people that work there. We are flattered that creative minds like the people that make these games chose us to turn their ideas into physical reality! As you can see in the photos, the results are fantastic.

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    Thank You Guys! Looking forward to many future projects.

    Contact us if you too would like to do something creative and cool with your office, we are always game for fun, new, innovative uses of Prints on Wood!

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