I am so proud of my new collection of prints… you’d think they were my second child. We just made phone cases with a few of them and they. are. rad. Available for the iPhone 5-6 and Samsung Galaxy. We can do other phones too, just send us your desires and we will let you know if they are possible.
I have reread Joan Didion’s “The White Album” more times than I can count. Included in that book is her packing list (below). I would love to see an entire book of just the packing lists of interesting, famous people. Though this was written in an era of travel that seems more romantic than the one that we have now. Can you imagine going through security with a typewriter? My version of the packing list is above (credit below), I think Joan and I would travel well together.
To Pack and Wear:
2 jerseys or leotards
1 pullover sweater
2 pair shoes
nightgown, robe slippers
bag with: shampoo, toothbrush and paste, Basis soap, razor, deodorant, aspirin, prescriptions, Tampax, face cream, powder, baby oil
2 legal pads and pens
This is a list which was taped inside my closet door in Hollywood during those years when I was reporting more or less steadily. The list enabled me to pack, without thinking, for any piece I was likely to do. Notice the deliberate anonymity of costume: in a skirt, a leotard, and stockings, I could pass on either side of the culture. Notice the mohair throw for trunk-line flights (i.e. no blankets) and for the motel room in which the air conditioning could not be turned off. Notice the bourbon for the same motel room. Notice the typewriter for the airport, coming home: the idea was to turn in the Hertz car, check in, find an empty bench, and start typing the day’s notes.
—Joan Didion, The White Album
packing list credits: cashmere pullover sweater / vintage typewriter / oversized sunglasses / clarks spy belle booties / bourbon / legal pads / mohair throw / oscar de la renta caftan / fsny ballet flats
Our 2015 Wall Calendar is 11″ x 17″, printed single sided – you can cut and frame the prints and have a whole new gallery wall for 2016.
Patterns were inspired by elements from places around the world. Created by digitally collaging my hand-marbled stamped and painted papers. (Those circles below were made with yukon gold potatoes!)
Our 2015 Desk Calendar comes in a little plastic case that doubles as a calendar stand. $12
The Versailles Pattern was inspired by the Queen’s Staircase from… Versailles. I’m seeing more marble in home decor and fashion, and I l-o-v-e it. A few chic items for your perusal.
1/ Vase by Rimma Tchilingarinan 2/ Marbled Silk Shirt by Balenciaga 3/ DIY Marbled Bowls by Elisha Blaha Cripe 4/ Marbled Tote Bag by Fly Like A Butterfly 5/ Versailles Pattern in 2015 Wall Calendar by JHill Design 6/ Marbled Dinnerware by Martha Sturdy 7/ Marbled Scarf by Scout + Catalogue 8/ Hanging Pot by The Tiny Squirrel 9/ Notebook by Julia Kostreva
The Versailles Pattern was made by hand-marbiling paper, a technique I started teaching myself this summer. The papers were then scanned and I played with the colors in Photoshop. I drew the “q-berty” pattern in Illustrator and then digitally collaged it with the altered marbled papers. I’m excited about this pattern, it is a 360 from the bold, vector patterns I have done in the past. Very refreshing.
In Michelle’s own words:
I first came across JHill Design on a blog back in 2010. I loved her “Places I’ve Never Been” series, and was immediately drawn to her Bangkok print because I had studied abroad there, and then lived there for a year after college. While poking around the website, I noticed the “Personalize” section with examples using different city patterns to memorialize engagements, weddings, births, etc., and I thought that one of these pieces would make such a nice wedding gift! I love to give personal gifts when I can, especially to commemorate special occasions like weddings. I gave my first print to a couple in 2010, and since then I would say my now husband and I have given at least 10 prints as wedding gifts. I love choosing a pattern based on where the wedding is being held, the wedding colors, or something that is special and meaningful to the couple. And then I try to personalize the text to match the couple as well. The husband-to-be of one couple even said that the thing he was most excited for about his wedding (besides marrying his fiancé of course) was getting a print from me and my husband! He couldn’t wait to see what we picked out for them. This same couple had all their belongings in storage for a few months while house hunting, and their JHill print was the only piece of art they brought to hang in their temporary house.
I continue to give JHill prints as wedding gifts (three weddings this year!) and hope to be able to continue the tradition as our friends start to have babies, anniversaries, and special trips. It’s so fun for me to choose something personal for the recipients, which is easy thanks to the variety of prints Jennifer has created. And I know our friends appreciate the time and thought that went into choosing something unique just for them that no one else will have. Then each time they look at it, they can remember the special day and the celebration with all their loved ones. The only downside is that no one has given one to me and my husband! Maybe I’ll get him one as an anniversary gift one year. :o)
Our studio is just a couple miles from the Boston Marathon finish line, it’s one of the things I look forward to every year. Especially this year when there will be more fans cheering on the runners than ever, (this year I’d hug every single runner if I could).
We have been asked for a few years to add a Boston Marathon Map Print to our Boston Sports Map collection, and we are finally doing it. The cool thing is that we are personalizing our Boston Marathon Map Print for the runners. For the month of April we are offering free personalization on the Boston Marathon Map Print to runners (and those who want to give them a gift) with the code “RUN2014″.
The idea came after my friend Holly had us do a series of Personalized Map Prints for her Marathon-running sister-in-law. It was really fun to do and the story the prints tell of travel and athleticism is really inspiring. We loved making the above prints for Tenely, here is a little about her running life:
“I’m Tenley Ludewig, 39, and I’ve been running since I started track in middle school. I ran my first marathon at 28 when I learned a number of my friends had run them and I wanted to see if I could do one as well. My first was the Marine Corps Marathon in my hometown of DC and it was memorable not only because it was my first but because my family all came out to cheer me on. In the last five years, I have trained with Capital Area Runners, a group with a very established coach. I have completed three more marathons during this time. I hate training in the winter, so I have not raced Boston yet, but I will one day when I get a thick skin. I enjoyed the last six miles of Boston helping my friend come in back in 2012 and that was exhilarating.”
For the month of April we are offering free personalization on the Boston Marathon Map Print to runners (and those who want to give them a gift) with the code “RUN2014″. There is also a unpersonalized version of the Map for those who love the Marathon as much as I do to add to their collection.
I’m so excited that we finally did this! We took a little video of how we make the maps for our City Maps series. First we draw the neighborhood map (not shown because it takes for-ever), the we make the drawings into clipping paths. Next we import jpgs of our patterns until the whole map is bursting with bright JHill pattern. Here you can see how Juliana made our new map for The Bronx.
Here is a look at the final The Bronx Map Print. We also just finished maps for St Louis, Washington DC, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Coming up next… Austin and Dallas! Which city would you want a neighborhood map print for?
This year my husband surprised me with a trip to California for our 5 year wedding anniversary. The best part… our sister-in-laws offered to watch our three year old for a night so we could getaway. We decided to drive about an hour and a half north of San Francisco to Mankas in Inverness. After calling and having the rooms described to me (which I LOVED having done) we decided to splurge and stay in the Boatsman Quarters and it didn’t disappoint. We also had dinner at their sister restaurant Sir and Star in Marin, which was delicious.
I’ve seen this “You have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyonce” mug everywhere and I love it. It is created by Sweaty Wisdom, (witty remarks from the yoga mat), visit their Etsy shop where there are more treasures to be had. I need to remember that “Oprah Wasn’t Built in a Day” and I would like someone to whisper “Your Fear is Full of Shit” in my ear on repeat as I am flying (and TERRIFIED) home from San Francisco today . *ps… still listening to ‘Yonce’s visual album on repeat. current favs: Mine and Flawless.
One ways I’ve been breaking free from my creative block is stepping away from computer illustration. I love my vectors, but it is time to incorporate more into them. My goal is to take some of my favorite existing patterns / places and recreate them using different methods such as watercolor, paper marbling, and printmaking.
I started with watercolor. Here is what I learned:
1. It’s hard
2. I’m a massive control freak
3.There is no controlling watercolor (for the beginner at least). It’s basically the opposite of working in illustrator for me.
As fate would have it my new studio mate is illustrator extraordinare Julia Denos. We have spent afternoons painting together, with her teaching me painting tricks and I educating her on InDesign and going to a spa. I have loved every minute of it. I’ve scanned these watercolor paintings and work will them into a totally new design for the Fairbanks, Alaska pattern – an imagined vacation to see the aurora borealis. And I’ll keep on painting, because I’ve barely scratched this surface.
One night, while laying in bed perusing graphic design on Pinterest, (a favorite pre-bedtime activity), I came across the work of graphic designer Kellyn Walker. I was so inspired! I’ve been killing my creative block by incorporating more handmade elements, scanned objects and collage-ness to my patterns and designs. She does it so very well. Check out her very inspiring Pinterest boards.