Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Two New Spaniard Matryoshkas

Souvenirs my Grandmother brought back from Spain.
Hello, and Happy Valentine's Day to you! I recently found myself looking again at some souvenirs my Grandmother brought back from Spain. I've loved these Flamenco dancers since I was a child: the dolls, fan, and embroidered postcards. I decided to photograph them to share with you some of the things from my childhood that first sparked my curiosity in cultures and ultimately would inspire my work as an adult.

My Grandpa Charles was in the US military and he, my Grandma and their daughters (the oldest is my mother) were stationed and traveled all over the world. Their home was filled with interesting items from their travels. Looking at these items from Spain I started to think, "I really should draw a couple more Flamenco dancers!" So I did, a pink dress version and a red dress version.
Spaniard Pink Dress Matryoshka
Spaniard Red Dress Matryoshka
These new drawings are now available in a variety of sizes in my shop and on merchandise in my zazzle shop. Also available is a new instant download coloring sheet.
Spaniard Matryoshka Coloring Sheet 2nd version
 And just as a reminder, below is my first Spaniard Matryoshka.
Spaniard Green Dress Matryoshka
Do you have a collection of cultural items from your cultural heritage or a culture you are interested in? I love to receive photos from my customers of my artwork displayed with cultural items!! If you do, please take a photo and send it to me on Etsy or Facebook.

My next drawing will come from my suggestions list (in the right hand column of my blog). I recently updated the list to include all suggestions I've received to date. If there is another culture you would like me to add to the list please let me know. Photos of examples of traditional cultural dress are always helpful and appreciated too! :)


Sunday, January 28, 2018

Tongan Matryoshka

Tongan Matryoshka
Hello! This is my Tongan Matryoshka drawing in honor of the people of Tonga. Tonga is a Polynesian Kingdom in the southwest Pacific Ocean.

I find that when I begin drawing a new culture I notice similarities and parallels to cultures I've previously drawn. So I've made sub-categories in my head. For example, some cultures wear red beaded necklaces. I've been surprised how many! So when I start a drawing that includes a red beaded necklace I think, "Oh, its one of the 'Red Beaded' cultures." There are also "Apron Wearing" cultures, and "Fan" holding cultures. So when I started this one I thought, "Yay! A 'Fan culture'!" It was a really fun fan to draw too, figuring out how to capture the woven aspect and open areas. Some of my other "Fan" drawings are my Cambodian, Cuban, Queen Elizabeth I, and Filipina.

While doing research for this culture I came across many inspiring images on the web and pinned them here. Above is my preliminary design process with a pencil sketch and color design elements.

Tongan Coloring Sheet
And this is an example of my Tongan coloring sheet. Prints and the printable file coloring sheet are now available in my etsy shop and my dot com.

My Tongan Matryoshka isn't the first Polynesian I've drawn. You may also be interested in seeing my Maori of New Zealand, and my Samoan.


Saturday, January 6, 2018

Belarusian Matryoshka

Belarusian Matryoshka
Happy New Year! New year, new drawing! A Belarusian Matryoshka inspired by the Belarusian people and their traditional dress! Prints and a printable file coloring sheet are now available in my etsy shop and my dot com. These shops are the most personal way to purchase my work. I print out the prints myself, sign and date them on the back, package them, and include a thank you note and other goodies with each shipment.

The printable coloring sheet is available for instant download, so it is fast and convenient. Purchase once and print out as many as you want, whenever you want. Fun for parties, students, groups of kids or adults!
Belarusian Matryoshka Coloring Sheet

Merchandise with my Belarusian Matryoshka is available in my Zazzle shop: postcards, note cards, postage stamps, tote bags, and phone cases. These have been the most popular items but Zazzle offers a multitude of products. So if there is any product that you are interested in purchasing, but don't see available, please let me know so I can make it available.

And because many of you have said you enjoy seeing my preliminary sketches. . .
Belarusian Matryoshka preliminary sketch and design process
You may also enjoy seeing some images of Belarusian traditional dress I found on the web and pinned here.

Again I would like to wish you a wonderful 2018. I'm excited and look forward to bringing you more drawings and designs in the coming year. Thank you for your continued interest and support!! :)


Thursday, September 28, 2017

Cutie Patooties Mini Zine Printable

Cutie Patooties Mini Zine Printable
Hello! I've always wanted to make a mini zine, a little book. I have in the past made small coloring books, but I wanted to make a little artwork book in full color. I've been searching for inspiration for a while. Finally, I had an idea!! My family and I enjoy going to antique and thrift stores, and shopping for vintage items online too. The idea– I would take photographs of dolls and figures from my personal collection, and combine them with my drawings to create scenes that would evoke individual stories for each artwork.

The process, my preliminary sketches.
It was a month's worth of glorious fun (aka work)! First, I decided which vintage items to include and photographed them. Then, I took inspiration from the vintage items to create settings for each of them. I sketched out the settings in pencil and scanned them into the computer. Next, I made some minor changes to the vintage item photos, placed the photos in my drawing program along with the pencil sketches, and drew the scenes. And finally, I created a one page layout for the book that could be printed and easily folded and cut into a little paper book. After printing many proofs, and making adjustments, it was complete. I've titled the mini zine “Cutie Patooties” because it is a phrase from the 1920’s and 30’s and I thought it described and went well with the vintage items. The book features seven artworks and a table of contents listing the titles of each piece.

Doll head that inspired "Tasha Dreams".
The doll head I used in the artwork “Tasha Dreams” I’ve had since I was little. The body disappeared years ago, in fact I can’t even remember what it looked like or why it’s gone (a mishap probably when we moved from SC to NC). All that remains is this cute little head. I could never part with it. It was just too adorable! And now, at last, I understand why. It was meant to be included in this little book! It reminds me of my daughter with her jet black hair so I named the artwork it inspired “Tasha Dreams” after her. Tasha can always tell when a drawing is based on her because I always include a swirl of hair at the hairline like the one at the top of her forehead.

So I hope you will hop on over to my shop and check it out. I've listed the mini zine printable in both my dot com and my Etsy shop as a file to download and print yourself. I even have a step by step video of how to fold and cut it into a book (please see below).

Thank you for your interest and support.


Thursday, August 31, 2017

Moldovan and Romanian Matryoshkas

Moldovan Matryoshka
Romanian Matryoshka
Hello! Today I bring you my two latest folk dress drawings from the cultures of Moldova and Romania. Prints and coloring sheets are now available at my dot com and as always in my Etsy shop. Merchandise featuring both are available in my Zazzle shop.

Speaking of which, I was so excited to see that guitar cases are now available on Zazzle!! Matryoshka and guitars do share a shape! And these remarkable guitar case/bags have interchangeable "faces". So the entire front face can be removed and another applied. You can purchase one case with one of my cultural matryoshkas, and then other cultures to swap out. Bags are available in acoustic and electric versions. I'm in the process of offering these for all my cultures. I have drawn over one hundred cultures so it will take me some time. If you are waiting for a particular culture to be available please contact me and let me know so I can go ahead and make it available.

Romanian Guitar Case
Romanian Guitar Case
by AmyPerrotti

Here is a link to a video showing how to swap out the faces (jump ahead to 2:15):

My husband is a guitarist, so no wonder this has me so excited! :)


Sunday, August 6, 2017

Nicaraguan Matryoshka

Nicaraguan Matryoshka
Hello! Since my last post, I have completed a Nicaraguan Matryoshka. Prints and a coloring sheet are now available (and other products as well). This is the fourth Central American culture I've drawn. I pinned a board of Nicaraguan images I found around the web here.

Russian Doll & Snowman, A Snow Globe Love Story, Coloring & Activity Book Printable

I also have a new coloring and activity book printable PDF,  "Russian Doll & Snowman, A Snow Globe Love Story"! I have offered this coloring/activity book in the past but now I'm making the file itself available. So you can print as many as you'd like for a one time price. It includes 4 coloring pages, a maze, a "draw your own snow globe scene", and 2 tent card dolls to make. Also a full color cover and a table of contents.


Thursday, June 29, 2017

Fun Activities and Projects

Indian Mother and Baby, Purple and Pink, Doll Pillow
Hello! I've been busy creating all kinds of stuff! First off, are Cut and Sew fabric projects in my Spoonflower shop— Doll Pillows!!! Two Indian Mother and Baby, doll pillow, cut and sew fabrics! Above is the doll pillow I made for my daughter, the purple and pink, and below is the red and blue. They are from my Indian Mothers and Daughters drawing that I sell as prints.
Indian Mother and Baby, Red and blue, Doll Pillow

Little Red Riding Hood Coloring Book Printable File
Also new, is my Little Red Riding Hood Coloring Book Printable file. It comes with twelve coloring pages, and a full color front and back cover. Keep the sheets loose, or staple them together with the covers to make a coloring book. There are scenes of Little Red Riding Hood and her forest friends throughout the year, the wolf dressed as Grandma, a skunk, valentines, an Easter egg, autumn leaves, gingerbread men, and snowflakes. The great thing about purchasing a printable file is you can print as many as you want, as often as you want, for just one price. They are fun and convenient for party favors or group activities. If you are, or know an adult who is, fond of coloring it's fun for adults too! If you don't already know, or haven't guessed, the Little Red Riding Hood is inspired by my daughter Tasha.
Top half of my Marshallese Matryoshka coloring sheet.
I've also improved my coloring sheet files with thinner black lines to allow for maximum coloring and greater detail. When I first designed my coloring sheets I was thinking in terms of kids coloring with crayons, and classic thick black lined coloring sheets. More and more adults are purchasing my coloring sheets for themselves and coloring with colored pencils. So I've gone through all my cultural coloring sheets and made the improvements. You can see an example above.

In other news: 
I am now on Instagram! So hopefully (along with my other many locations) wherever you are on the web you can conveniently find me, follow me, and keep up with my work.

Lastly, I've updated all the cultures in my zazzle shop to now offer phone cases. 
See! I told you I've been busy. :)


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Three Colombian Matryoshka

Colombian Folk Dancer Matryoshka

Colombian Misak or Guambiana

Colombian Palenquera of Cartagena

The only way to describe my experience researching Colombia is— So many cultures! So little time! There are so many beautiful cultures, I was absolutely overwhelmed with possibilities. I decided to narrow it down to three to start with, because I could not choose just one!

The "folk dancer" inspired Colombian is wearing the national colors of the flag: yellow, blue, and red. With a ruffled full skirt, perfect for twirling, and pretty flowers in her hair.

The Misak or Guambiana Colombian is a little girl from one of the many indigenous peoples of Colombia. I am fascinated by the different mountain people of the world and feel the kinship in their cultural ways of life.

The Palenquera of Cartagena Colombia represents the women who sell fruit and are known for their multicolored clothing, and posing with bowls of fruit carried on their heads. They are an African Diaspora culture of Colombia.

So you see why I could not draw just one. And with that, I salute the rich cultural diversity of Colombia!  


Thursday, March 9, 2017

Saudi Matryoshka and New Favor Boxes

Saudi Arabian Matryoshka
Aah, March! Daffodil, camellia, and forsythia are blooming in our yard. Very inspiring, so I've been drawing and today I bring you my latest creation, a Saudi Arabian Matryoshka! She is now available in my Etsy shop, my new dot com and soon in my Zazzle shop (it takes a couple of days for new items to show up there).
Flowerpot Favor Box
I've also designed some new favor boxes. An anthropomorphic flower in a flowerpot DIY printable that comes in five happy colors.
Basketball Favor Box
A basketball hoop favor box, fun for a basketball or sports themed party or as a gift box for your favorite basketball fan.
Strawberry Favor Boxes
And last but not least, sweet strawberry favor boxes to fill with candies or other treats for a birthday party, shower or wedding.

So, I hope you are feeling inspired to create a themed party! Please send me photos from your event!! I also love to receive photos of my Matryoshka prints, framed and in arrangements. Please let me know if I have your permission to share any photos you send me. Thank you! :)


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Matryoshka Makeovers

Pakistani Matryoshka

Spring is coming! Time to spruce up! It's time for Matryoshka makeovers. First off, my Pakistani Matryoshka has had a bit of a wardrobe change and is feeling beautiful!

Some of my other Matryoshka felt like it was time for a change too. My Irish Dancer now comes with black or light brown hair. My Serbian and Latvian now have brown or blond hair to choose from. My Scotswoman has had a day at the spa and her complexion is just glowing. My Portuguese has gone back to her darker natural hair color and brightened up her wardrobe with a new blue apron. My Laotian now has red and pink themed clothing to choose from. And last but not least, my Taiwanese Bride decided she is really a Chinese Bride at heart.

I would like to thank my cousin Robin and her daughter Meredith, my friend Tracy and all my art collectors for your suggestions, help and input.


Monday, November 28, 2016

Matryoshka Artist Trading Cards

Hello! I'm very excited to show you my new Matryoshka Artist Trading Cards! ATCs are fun to collect and trade with friends or just display. 
If you're not familiar with my work, I've drawn around 100 of the beautiful and fascinating cultures from around the world in matryoshka shape. With so many to choose from, you might be wondering how I chose just three in this new format. Well, it was easy! These are the first three that I originally created so they hold a special place in my heart. My intention is for these to be a fun and educational way to learn about and celebrate the many diverse cultures of our world. If there is enough interest in them I will continue to add new ATC's in the future. I'm looking forward to getting some plastic trading card pocket sheets and starting a collection for my own daughter in a 3-ring binder. 
Every Artist Trading Card is handmade in my studio by me. I use an inkjet printer for artwork that produces pieces intended to last for generations. They are printed on one side of high-quality, heavyweight matte photo paper. The card then folded in half to make it the size of a trading card (2.5"x3.5"). As with all of the items from my Etsy shop, ATCs are produced with care and closely examined to ensure that each is a perfect composition. 
Each full-color card has matryoshka artwork on both sides. One side shows the full Matryoshka drawing. The reverse features a close-up of the face and indentifies culture, country and continent the Matryoshka represents. To ensure its pristine condition, it is placed in a rigid, clear, top loading card holder. 
Matryoshka Artist Trading Cards are currently available exclusively in my Etsy shop and can be viewed under the new section called "Artist Trading Cards". 

Monday, July 4, 2016

Łowicz Polish Bride Matryoshka

Łowicz Polish Bride Matryoshka

Hello! I have just completed my Polish Bride from Łowicz, Matryoshka. She is the second Polish Matryoshka I have drawn. The first one I drew back in 2010.

Polish Matryoshka drawn in 2010

Prints, coloring sheet files and merchandise for both are now available in my Etsy and zazzle shops.

If you have a culture you would like me to draw, or have made a suggestion and are waiting for me to compete it, please send me any photos or links to examples you have of the cultural dress you are interested in. I would love to see it and it may help me get to your suggestion quicker.

Thank you for your continued interest and support! :)


Friday, June 10, 2016

Mexican China Poblana Matryoshka

Mexican China Poblana Matryoshka

Hello! Introducing my latest Matryoshka a China Poblana from Mexico. There are so many beautiful cultures in Mexico and so far I've drawn four of them!  Prints of various sizes and a coloring sheet PDF downloadable file are now available in my Etsy shop. Postcards, notecards, postage stamps and tote bags are available in my zazzle shop.

Mexican Matryoshkas
Above are my earlier Mexican cultures; a Yucatan, a dancer (Jalisco Folklorico), and a Tehuana.

I have updated my Suggestions List on the right hand column of my blog. If you have made a suggestion and are waiting for me to get to it please check the list and make sure I have included it. If you don't see it please let me know. Also, if you have photos or links to examples showing the type of dress you would like me to depict in your culture suggestion, they are always helpful and appreciated!


Monday, May 9, 2016

Salvadoran Matryoshka

Salvadoran Matryoshka
Hello! We have been enjoying a beautiful spring here in Winston-Salem, NC. With the fear of frost over it's time to plant flowers in our yards and gardens. I hope you are having a beautiful season where you are too.

Today I would like to introduce you to my latest drawing, a Salvadoran Matryoshka! Prints of various sizes and a downloadable coloring sheet are now available in my Etsy shop. Postage stamps, postcards, note cards and tote bags are available in my zazzle shop.

I have also added a new design to my spoonflower shop. I was inspired last Christmas by our white Christmas tree and vintage ornaments, and designed this new pattern entitled White Christmas tree. It is now available on all different types of fabric, wall paper and gift wrap in my spoonflower shop.

White Christmas Tree

This time of year is very inspiring with all its beauty. I'm hoping to have more drawings for you soon. :)


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

New– Latvian Matryoshka

Latvian Matryoshka
Hello, and Happy 2016 to you! Today I'd like to introduce you to my new Latvian Matryoshka. I've created her after receiving some suggestions on a redesign of the Latvian Matryoshka I first drew in 2010. I hope you like her! Prints in a variety of sizes and a downloadable coloring sheet are now available in my Etsy shop. Also, postage stamps, postcards, note cards and tote bags are available in my zazzle shop.


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Aboriginal Australian Matryoshka

Aboriginal Australian Matryoshka

Hello friends! This is my latest work an Aboriginal Australian Matryoshka! She was such fun to draw I hope you like the finished product! Prints in a variety of sizes and a downloadable coloring sheet are now available in my Etsy shop and postage stamps, postcards, note cards and tote bags are available in my zazzle shop.

I've also been busy coming up with fall designs for my spoonflower shop. Two of the collections are Owl and Oak Night and Owl and Oak Day.

Owl and Oak Night
Owl and Oak Day

This summer I saw the new film version of Far from the Madding Crowd and then read the book by Thomas Hardy. They inspired me to draw this design, Shepherd, also available in my spoonflower shop.


If you have a suggestion of a culture you would like me to draw in a matryoshka shape or a type of design you would like me to offer in my spoonflower shop please leave a comment on my blog or on one of my social media accounts.