Sunday, 24 May 2015

Motivation & education guide + 1 month of Skillshare for grabs


Over the past couple of years, I've gathered a few essential motivators that I'd like to share with you today. I believe that having a set of a few motivators at hand really helps, mainly during those days when you're not feeling your best or seeing the results you would hope for.

For me, education = motivation (at least for education that I choose and care about!) and so I will share both my motivation and education go-to lists with you. 

To top it all up, I've got a small surprise for you, which I would have been ever so happy to get a few months back! (I actually did - I mentioned that in my post about a miracle here.)

My go-to motivation resources
  • Louise Hay's Morning Meditation - I can't tell you how many times this has totally brightened up the day for me, right from the start of it.
  • Dr. Wayne Dyer's talks like this one - I must have listened to this about 50 times already, not kidding you.  
  • The Secret book - over the past couple of years, I've read it a few times and like coming back to certain sections every so often. 
  • Marie Forleo's motivational videos that land in my inbox every Tuesday.  
  • Braid Creative blog full of advice for creatives who want to pay the bills with their passion.  
  • Being Boss podcast by Kathleen Shannon (from Braid Creative) and Emily Thompson who chat about tips and tricks for creatives entrepreneurs and interview people who have too made it (understand being their own boss :)
  • A good walk, possibly in the nature or at least peeking into gardens in our neighborhood and in the best case, calling my mum/ dear friend during it, is like a cherry on the cake.

Where I learn: my go-to education resources

Don't you just LOVE that moment when you finally figure out how to do something you've been wanting to do for a long time? I do! Here are my tricks to learning:
  • Research, a lot. Ask Youtube, Google, search through blogs, there will most probably be an answer to what you are looking to do. 
  • Simply DO stuff. I really wanted to learn how to illustrate digitally. At the beginning I had NO CLUE how. I first researched everything there was, for months and then I simply bought myself a graphic tablet without knowing how to use it and learned it by doing. Same with my DSLR camera. Same with Photoshop. Go and do what you want to learn. It will feel odd in the first days/ weeks, but in a couple of months, you'll be doing it like a pro.  
  • Follow your role models and observe what they do. I would recommend you to choose roughly 3 of your role models - that is, people that already do what you want to do - and read their blogs, articles, interviews, attend classes that they might hold and learn from them. This has been so inspirational to me and I've learned TONS from designers/ illustrators I admire.   
  • Find local conferences, meet ups and courses that relate to what you want to do. You'll quickly figure out which ones are working for you and which might not, but it's essential to meet and connect with people that do what you dream of doing or are at the same position as you. 
Small side note: I find that books are great, I have definitely bought MANY educational books over the past couple of years, but somehow, I end up loving online resources the most as they show you stuff rather than explain in words how to do it. Naturally, this depends on the topic you are learning. For me, online resources win.

Having said that, here is my last, but not least ! favorite education resource that I've been learning from like crazy in the past couple of months:

  • Skillshare - this is where I've learned Illustrator from scratch through Bonnie's Surface Pattern Design courses 1 (here) and 2 (here). There are PLENTY of courses on all topics you can think of (design, photography, business, DYI, etc.). 


If you've been wanting to take Bonnie's course too, or simply fancy learning anything else
you want, I've got a 

1 FREE MONTH OF



MEMBERSHIP FOR YOU, woohooooh!

You can give it a try and see if you want to stay :)
They offer a 14 day trial on their website, but as a member myself, I can share a 1 month trial with you (which I believe is much better for e.g. taking Bonnie's course).



Here are some of the courses I have taken and can only highly recommend:

& if you want to hear how I RUSHED to get into Skillshare just a couple of weeks ago, read this

Happy learning!

Monday, 18 May 2015

Swedish Forest is now on Society6, YAY!

The most liked patterns from my latest Swedish Forest collection are now available on Society6, woop woop! 
Society6 prints designs on mugs, tote bags, t-shirts, LEGGINGS (I have immediately ordered 'By the lake (dark)' leggings for myself, HAD TO!), bed duvet covers, laptop and iPhone skins and more. Even wall clocks. Have a look for yourself, my shop is now open! 


I absolutely could not resist to get these once they were available, can't wait for the package to arrive! :)
More clocks here
Other duvet cover options here
Tote bags here
More phone cases here
Other pillow patterns here
Any clear winners for you? 

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Launch of Swedish Forest pattern collection


A couple of days back, I've finished working on my new collection of patterns called Swedish Forest. Working on the collection took me about a month on and off and I truly enjoyed every bit of the process. 

I've submitted the collection to a design challenge by Bonnie Christine from Going Home To Roost within her Skillshare course and would be SO honored if I made it within the three winners. The results will be announced on Bonnie's blog on May 22nd. Have a look if you are curious :) I'll be impatiently waiting for the announcement!

The collection is based on my childhood memories from summers I've spent in Sweden with my grandmother, visiting my aunt. These memories belong to my dearest day dream getaways ever and it only felt natural to create a set of patterns based on them. I do hope that one day, I could re-visit this little place in Sweden that I haven't been to in the past 15 years as my aunt moved to the South of Sweden, hundreds of kilometers away from where she lived before. 

Till then, the fairy land will continue living in my head and hopefully, you'll be able to get a feeling of the atmosphere from the patterns.

Color version #1:

Color version #2:
Did you know that Swedish villages have mailboxes at one spot, all lined up on a wooden fence? Houses don't have a mailbox at their entrance, all of the mailboxes are at one place and people pick up their post there. It looks a bit like this. At least that's how it was 15 years ago :) Gosh do I feel old when I am starting to use phrases like '15 years ago'!

I really enjoyed putting the patterns into perspective through product mockups. Seeing the patterns on things that I could have at home is just so rewarding. It makes my dreams a little more visual :)

I'd love to hear what you think of the collection - any favorite patterns or ideas for products you'd like to see them on?

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Weekly Mini Story series on Facebook

Hi lovelies!

I hope you are having a great day today. It's nicely sunny here in Vienna, the summer is almost here!

Last Sunday, I started a small weekly Mini Story series on my Facebook page. Have you noticed?

I love sharing longer stories here on the blog with you. I however feel like here on the blog, the articles scream for beautiful photos. The camera on my phone is horrid (I absolutely cannot wait to the moment when I get a new phone - hopefully in July) and so I can only shoot with my larger camera and then I edit the photos one by one in Photoshop. I'm a total perfectionist and sometimes preparing a blog post takes me up to 3 hours.

That is why I thought that sharing little stories on Facebook might be handy :)

What do you think?

See the first story - which is all about my artist name - here. The second one is coming on Sunday!



PS. I am not quite sure yet whether I will stick to posting them on Facebook or move them to an e-mail form or even to the blog, but in any case, I like the idea of posting shorter stories.

PSS. Did I tell you that a complete overhaul of nataliezart.com is in progress? It's been quite a demanding project so far with lots of tech challenges on the go, but I can tell you already, it will be so pretty. Most of all, it will finally be clear what I offer and what can businesses/ individuals hire me for. I CANNOT wait to share this with you once it's done!

Oh and a last note - please have fingers crossed for me around May 15th :) I am taking part in Bonnie Christine's Surface Pattern Design course competition and would LOVE to win it with my Swedish Forest pattern collection. Have a look at it here if you are curious. I will be officially debuting the collection a little later in May.

Have an amazing weekend all of you! Chris and I will be at Feschmarkt Design market in Graz from Friday till Sunday, wooohooo!
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