Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Venezuelan Dancer Matryoshka

Venezuelan Dancer Matryoshka
While on holiday I did some research for my Venezuelan Matryoshka and came across the wonderful Joropo Dancers! I love all the Latin American cultures! Thank you for suggesting Venezuela Adriana (ClayCatShop)Next on my suggestions list is Panamanian! I wish you all love, joy and peace. :)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Balinese Dancer Matryoshka

Balinese Dancer Matryoshka

This is my Balinese Dancer Matryoshka (now available in my shop), another wonderful suggestion! While doing research for this illustration I came across the Rejang Dewa traditional dance costumes. I was inspired by these beautiful costumes complete with tall woven hats adorned with flowers (very different from anything I've drawn before) and the beautiful and graceful girls that wear them and perform the dance. I hope I did this wonderful culture and people justice. I thank you for your continued support and terrific suggestions and for the beautiful cultures we celebrate together. Peace and joy to you and yours. :)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

24 Matryoshka Print Proofs / Seconds

24 Matryoshka Print Proofs / Seconds

I've just listed a pack of proofs / seconds in my shop! While drawing my illustrations I print out proofs to check the colors and then make necessary adjustments. Also, not every print comes out perfect. Sometimes there may be an imperfection in the paper or in the print quality. I save all my printed proofs and seconds but they are piling up and I need to clear them out of my studio. So you are in luck if you are wanting to buy a bunch of my prints and don't mind an occasional flaw or that some of them aren't the final illustration. The first photo shows the stack of 24 prints packaged together in a cello sleeve. The second, third and fourth photos show all the prints that are included in the pack. This great deal is now available in my shop! :)

UPDATE November 16, 2011: I've sold my first pack so I've listed another here! :)

UPDATE #2 December 27, 2011: I've sold my second pack so I've listed another here! :)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Nepalese Matryoshka Fundraising for the BlinkNow Foundation

Nepalese Bride Matryoshka Close-Up, Fundraiser for the BlinkNow Foundation

Nepalese Bride Matryoshka, Fundraiser for the BlinkNow Foundation

Recently I learned about Maggie Doyne's Kopila Valley Children's Home and School, and the BlinkNow Foundation from my friend Nadine who has a friend, a nurse, who is going there to set up a health clinic. Nadine sent me a link to the website where I watched Maggie speak at "The Do Lectures" (below). Tears streamed down my face as I watched this courageous, compassionate, and committed woman, as I heard her story and learned about the work that she and her parents and family, and the local people of Nepal are doing to improve the lives of Children in the Surkhet region of Nepal. It made me hopeful for the future of the human race that people can be so committed to helping others. I share in Maggie's hope that one day all children will have the love that they need and their basic needs met. Watching and hearing her story made me believe that, in this sometimes too pessimistic world, it is really possible. I was inspired to divert my attention from my list of nationality/ethnicity drawing suggestions and create a Nepalese Bride Matryoshka illustration. I also contacted BlinkNow and received permission to promote and donate 50% of the sales price of each print to the BlinkNow Foundation. I hope you like my Nepalese Bride Matryoshka and enjoy Maggie's "The Do Lectures" inspiring video.

Maggie Doyne — Why the human family can do better from The Do Lectures on Vimeo.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Indian Matryoshka Party Favor / Gift Boxes PDF Printable

Indian Matryoshka party favor / gift boxes (constructed)

Indian Matryoshka party favor / gift boxes (backs)

As I mentioned in my post yesterday I'm very excited to be incorporating some of my international Matryoshka illustrations into my party favor / gift box PDF printables. Yesterday I debuted my African Matryoshka boxes and today my Indian Matryoshka boxes. Perfect for holding candy, or small gifts. A decorative party favor, place at each table setting or arrange together as a centerpiece. Whether it's a holiday, dinner party, birthday party, bridal or baby shower, my boxes are appropriate for all. Enjoy! :)

Wondering how they are assembled? Here is a photo of one of my other boxes:
Simple to construct; print, cut one continuous piece, fold, and glue one tab and you have a charming Matryoshka favor box. And yes, this is my original design, box and all! :)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

African Matryoshka Party Favor / Gift Boxes PDF Printable

African Party Favor / Gift Boxes (constructed)
African Party Favor / Gift Boxes (backs)
I often get requests for PDFs made from my international Matryoshka illustrations. So, I'm coming up with PDFs incorporating some of my international Matryoshka faces. This first batch is my African Party Favor / Gift Boxes PDF printables. Don't they look festive? I placed one of the girl's face from my Matryoshka Tuareg Family illustration on my Matryoshka Party Favor Box and created these six colorful boxes. I hope you like them. :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Tunisian Girl Matryoshka

Tunisian Girl Matryoshka Close-Up Portrait
Tunisian Girl Matryoshka

I have just completed my Northern African Tunisian Girl Matryoshka! Another wonderful suggestion. I can't wait to print out ACEOs and magnets and all my prints of her. I really enjoy hearing from you all. I love your suggestions and the one-on-one contact I have through my Etsy shop. I am very grateful for all your support. Did you know, I include a hand written and signed thank you note on the back of a Matryoshka ACEO print (the small baseball size print I offer) with each order I fill? I want you to know how much I appreciate each order. I even keep track of which Matryoshka ACEO I send because I try to send a different one with each order a customer makes so you can collect ACEO thank you notes along with your purchases. Thank you all so much for your wonderful suggestions and continued support! :)

 Below is my grouping suggestion for my Tunisian Girl.

Turk Bride Matryoshka, Tunisian Girl Matryoshka, Greek Matryoshka

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Matryoshka Coloring Sheet PDFs

Armenian Girl Matryoshka Coloring Sheet PDF
Queen Elizabeth I - English Matryoshka Coloring Sheet PDF
German Bavarian Matryoshka Coloring Sheet PDF
Italian Girl Matryoshka Coloring Sheet PDF
Scotswoman Matryoshka Coloring Sheet PDF

Hello friends. While nursing a cold and feeling sluggish I have found it difficult to pursue the normal long hours drawing at my computer. Since laying on the couch has been more my speed, I decided to work on something that turned out to be quite therapeutic while convalescing. I took my lap size light box, my original Matyoshka pencil sketch drawings and some good ink pens and set to work creating these Matryoshka coloring sheets! I am offering them in my "DIY PDF Printable Crafts" shop section. I hope they are as enjoyable to color as they were to draw. Thank you for all your kind support of my pencil sketches without which these never would have come to be. :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Mexican Matryoshka Sisters

My Mexican Matryoshka Girls: Yucatan, Jalisico Dancer, and Tehuana

As I mentioned in my last post when I was doing research for the much suggested Mexican Matryoshka, I was so inspired by the many regions that feature such beautiful, traditional dress that I decided to illustrate three! So here are my Mexican sister Matryoshka! Pictured above, the middle one is my Jalisico Mexican Dancer that I introduced you to in my last post. The girl on the left is from the Yucatan where the dresses are white with beautifully embroidered flowers. The girl on the right is wearing a black Tehuana dress from Oaxaca, again with embroidered flowers. The Mexican culture is so rich, I hope you like these Matryoshka, they are all now available in my shop. :)

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Mexican Dancer Matryoshka

Mexican Dancer Matryoshka

My newest Matryoshka illustration is inspired by the Mexican Ballet Folklorico, the Jalisico dress traditionally associated with Mariachi dancers, adorned with brightly colored ribbons. While doing research for my Mexican Matryoshka illustration I found three different regional dresses I was very inspired by and I plan on drawing the other two as well. The other two regions are the Yucatan and Juchitan (in Oaxaca). Often when researching a culture I find many different groups and styles of dress. It can be quite hard to choose which one to draw. I usually try to draw the one most often associated with a particular country, as is this Mexican Ballet Folklorica. But this time I thought why draw only one? So if ever I draw a Matryoshka and you are interested in a different region please just let me know. The more the merrier! :)

my Mexican Dancer Matryoshka rough sketch

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Ethiopian Girl Matryoshka

Ethiopian Girl Matryoshka

Hello blog friends! I hope you like my newest illustration, an Ethiopian Girl Matryoshka. I have had many requests for her, some of which came from the international adoption community.

Here are a couple of grouping suggestions for her. The first is a blue-green grouping.

Armenian Girl Matryoshka, Ethiopian Girl Matryoshka, and Irish Dancer Matryoshka

The second grouping is of my African Matryoshka.

Southern Nigerian Matryoshka, Ethiopian Girl Matryoshka, and Violet Tuareg Matryoshka

 I love all of your suggestions so please keep them coming! Next on my suggestions list I see a Mexican Girl Matryoshka! I've really been looking forward to her too! Thank you! :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Swedish Girl Matryoshka

Swedish Girl Matryoshka
This is my latest illustration, my Swedish Girl Matryoshka. I hope you like her. :) She wears a purse as part of her traditional dress and I also included a wreath of flowers in her hair. She is not the first matryoshka I've drawn that includes a purse as part of the traditional dress. Below is a grouping suggestion showing these similar cultures.

Norwegian Girl Matryoshka, Swedish Girl Matryoshka, Finnish Girl Matryoshka

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Assyrian Girl Matryoshka

Assyrian Girl Matryoshka

My latest Matyoshka is Assyrian and adorned in silver and feathers. I had such fun researching her culture. I found wonderful videos of traditional dress and dance. I hope my illustrations inspire you to do research into your own heritage and also to explore other beautiful cultures of our world. Thank you for the suggestions, and please keep them coming! :)

Chinese Pink HanFu Girl Matryoshka 5"x7" print

Right now on elephantislove blog there is a give away going on of my Chinese Pink HanFu Girl Matryoshka 5x7 print. Please check it out! :)

UPDATE 10/21/2011

Assyrian Girl Matryoshka
I have updated this illustration to show more of the feathers. It has been suggested to me that the feathers are a very important part of the traditional dress and they needed to show more. I hope you are happy with the results. :)

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Armenian Matryoshka

Armenian Matryoshka

Armenian Matryoshka sketch

Hi, and Happy Independence Day (long holiday weekend) to those of you in the US. I just completed my Armenian Matryoshka. She wears a sheer veil, silver coin necklace and long ringlet curls. I fell in love with her and her culture as I drew her. I hope you like her too! Please keep the suggestions coming! :)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

German Bavarian Matryoshka

German Bavarian Matryoshka

 German Bavarian Matryoshka pencil sketch

This is my latest illustration, my German Bavarian Matryoshka. I have had several requests for a German and specifically a Bavarian Matryoshka. She is wearing a formal style of dress (dirndl) versus a folk/everyday look. I enjoy finding similarities between cultures and this is another silver coin, choker necklace, and apron wearing Matryoshka. I've also included my pencil sketch. I hope she lives up to everyone's expectations and you like her. :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Roman Goddess Juno Matryoshka

Roman Goddess Juno Matryoshka

As you probably know by now, I welcome suggestions of nationality/ethnicity/culture to draw as Matryoshka. Ancient Roman was suggested, and as I researched I came across beautiful sculptures and paintings depicting the Roman Goddess Juno. As I read about her I knew she was the perfect choice to draw as my Roman Matryoshka! She is described as being associated with femininity, childbearing and marriage. Also, she is often depicted with a peacock, that is why I included the peacock feathers. I hope you like her! :)

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Portuguese Girl Matryoshka 5"x7" print

Chinese Pink Hanfu Girl Matryoshka 5"x7" print

Japanese Geisha Matryoshka 5"x7" print

Hello, I have begun framing and photographing my Matryoshka prints to show examples of what the pieces look like framed and displayed in a home. The Portuguese Girl Matryoshka is lying on a Portuguese Apron my Grandmother bought in Portugal in the 1960's. The Chinese Pink Hanfu Girl Matryoshka is hanging on a mural I painted on my dining room wall of plum tree branches in bloom. The Japanese Geisha Matryoshka is sitting on a bamboo shelf with a wooden doll my grandmother got in Japan in the 1950's. Next, I'm going to photograph my larger prints in different frames and settings. Please note I am only selling prints in my shop, not framed pieces. I purchased these frames at a local store for a $1 each. Because the illustrations have a white boarder outside of the Matryoshka, I think they look great without matting. So if you are thinking about starting a collection of my Matryoshka you don't have to go to the poor house over framing and matting. :)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Scotswoman Matryoshka

Scotswoman Matryoshka Close-Up Portrait

Scotswoman Matryoshka

Scotswoman Matryoshka Rough Pencil Sketch

Hello friends! I have just completed my Scotswoman Matryoshka. Another redhead! I am a redhead by choice and Scot on my father's side (my maiden name is Stuart). With this Scotswoman Matryoshka I departed from my normal symmetrical style, as I've only done a couple of other times with my Italian Girl and Queen Elizabeth I. Sometimes I like to experiment with a more natural pose. I hope you like her! :)

Here are the two redheads I've drawn so far.

Scotswoman MatryoshkaQueen Elizabeth I Matryoshka

And because I forgot to show you this in my last post, here is my preliminary pencil sketch for my Swiss Girl Matryoshka.

Swiss Girl Matryoshka Rough Pencil Sketch

And another grouping suggestion, my Swiss and Finnish Matryoshkas.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Swiss Girl Matryoshka

Swiss Girl Matryoshka Close-Up Portrait

Swiss Girl Matryoshka

Hello, this is my Swiss Girl Matryoshka! She was inspired by the women of Nidwalden Switzerland. Their white shirts have pleated (starched I would think) sleeves with black bands and lace cuffs. Black lace covers the lower part of the arms. I really enjoyed drawing all the lace!! Silver adornments include a hair stick and chains on the bodice of the dress. I hope you like her!

I have just added my suggestions list to the right hand column of my blog, so you can see what is coming up next and make sure I have added any nationality/ethnicity suggestions you have made. I work on my suggestions list from the top down (in the order that they were suggested). I haven't researched all of these yet and I can only draw them if I find sufficient examples in my research. If you make a suggestion, photos or links to examples are most helpful! Please leave me a link in a comment or convo me on Etsy with a photo. Thank you for your suggestions, and please keep them coming!! :)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Matryoshka Party Kit Printable PDF

My Matryoshka Party Kit Printable PDF includes all this!
I have been working for the last month on bringing you a Matryoshka theme party kit! Last week I completed the design and over the weekend I staged my own Matryoshka party! 

Food Label Signs (blank for handwriting)
Cupcake Toppers
Straw Decorations
Paper Dolls that stand and nest
Coloring Sheets
Finger Dancer Dolls
Doll Face Stickers
Party Favor Box
Cookie Doll Decoration Card
Thank You Card

Close-Up of the table items

Another Close-up

My Matryoshka Favor Box

These are my original designs and I worked really hard to make each item easy to assemble. I'm very pleased with the way the Matryoshka Favor Box came out. It's one continuous piece with only one tab to glue!

My Matryoshka Invitations
 I wanted the invitation to have some aspect of how a nesting doll works but I wanted to minimize construction work. I decided to come up with a design that did not require cutting, only folding (the cards do come 2 to a sheet so the only cutting is cutting the 2 cards apart on a dotted line). I think I achieved the effect I was going for with minimal effort for the assembler. The card is designed to open in the middle (like a nesting doll). Open the doll to reveal the hidden invitation!

My Matryoshka Thank You Cards
The Thank You Cards are just a simple fold over card with a blank inside.

Matryoshka Party Activities
(3 Paper Dolls that stand and nest, 2 Coloring Sheets, 4 Finger Dancer Dolls)
I've tried to anticipate your needs by offering an entire Party kit and also offering two smaller kits: an Activities Kit, and a Decorations Kit. The Favor Box, Invitations, Thank You Cards and Coloring sheets are also sold separately. If there is any other configuration or item you are wanting to purchase individually, please let me know and I will make additional listings.

I think these Matryoshka party kits are perfect for birthday parties, bridal showers, or baby showers! I hope you like them! Happy parties! :)