Did You Know I’m an Illustrator?

Candy Illustration by Hugs are Fun
Originally I titled this “did you know I used to be an illustrator” but went back and changed it. I got my BFA in illustration from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design but I don’t draw much lately, but I guess I still consider myself an illustrator even though I do a lot more than that now.
Boy and Fish Illustration by Hugs are Fun
When I was in school I really wanted to work as an animator or illustrate children’s books, but after graduation I went the more safe route of getting a graphic design job. The job actually gave me quite a few opportunities to illustrate, my very first project was an HVACR themed comic book ad. During my time at the company I drew a lot of things you wouldn’t expect to work on at an HVACR company and had a lot of fun with it.
Casino Illustrations by Hugs are Fun

Cowboy Illustrations by Hugs are Fun

The other day I went back through my illustrations from college and really got frustrated with myself for not keeping up with drawing more. One of my 2014 goals was to draw more and I’ve barely picked up a sketchbook.
Food Pyramid Illustration by Hugs are Fun

Bread and Pineapple Illustrations by Hugs are Fun

Onion Illustration by Hugs are Fun

I unpacked a box from the garage full of my acrylic paints, watercolor, colored pencils, markers, and just tons of art supplies from school. I’m going to stop letting them sit in the closet and start using them.

Tea Party Illustration by Hugs are Fun

Giraffe Illustration by Hugs are Fun

Bee Girl Illustration by Hugs are Fun

Cowgirl Illustration by Hugs are Fun

Aesop's Fables Illustration by Hugs are Fun

Hopefully you will be seeing more illustrations from me soon, I’m feeling a renewed spark for it! Is there any skill you’ve put aside that you want to revive?

Also, if you’re interested in checking out any of my design work (I do freelance work!) you can see my work here.


  1. says

    Pottery is one thing I’d like to pick back up. Oh course, I don’t have a wheel just sitting in a closet, sadly. Also I’d like brush up on that high school Spanish. (Not arty, but it’s definitely interested me lately!)

    • says

      I took one pottery class in college and I never got fantastic at it but I really enjoyed it. I know the Water Street Studios has pottery classes and they might just let you go in and use a wheel. Now I want to look into it!
      I took three years of Spanish and barely remember any of it.

  2. says

    I’m the same way… I have a degree in 2D studio art, and I’ve been so frustrated with myself that I’ve hardly drawn or painted in years. I love sculpture, metals, ceramics, and printmaking too, but I don’t have access to the equipment needed. When my daughter was born, I needed a creative outlet so I taught myself to knit and crochet. One of my goals this year was to FINISH one painting. I have several I’ve started and not finished in the past. I’m pleased to say that, so far, I’ve finished FOUR paintings, and I’ve sold 3! I’m trying to make drawing and painting more of a habit, like it was in school. It’s harder to keep up with when you don’t have someone giving you assignments. It’s sad, though, because I feel like I’ve lost some of that skill and talent from lack of use. I get more frustrated with it now than I did then.

    • says

      Finishing one painting is a good, attainable goal. It’s just so much easier to pick up a crochet project or an embroidery than it is to paint. I think I’m going to start with some watercolor though since it’s easier to pick up and put down than acrylic.

      You’re definitely right, it’s harder when you don’t have an assignment or something specific to do. I just need to stop making excuses!

  3. says

    Great style! I knit and crochet but I would really like to expand what kinds of crafts I do. It’s hard to splurge though and invest in the tools for a new medium.

    • says

      I completely agree about it being hard to make the investment. It’s nice when it’s a craft that doesn’t require much to get starting. That’s one thing I like about cross stitch and embroidery, the supplies are all pretty cheap and you don’t need a lot.

  4. says

    I love these illustrations!

    I love to draw, and I don’t do it enough. I’m not particularly great at it (though I know if I would just do it for an hour a day I’d be much better) but I love doing it. Almost a year ago I broke my wrist, and an unfortunate side effect of the six weeks in the cast is that my left hand got really weak. The muscle just up and vanished, and the ligaments got sort of stiff and cranky, and when I draw for long my hand cramps up.. At the beginning of the year I promised myself I’d spend 15 minutes a day drawing to get the my hand back in shape, and I was really good about it for a month or two and then, um, not so much. I’ve been drawing more lately (mostly doodling possible embroidery designs) and it’s a little frustrating because my hand is still pretty much where it was in January, but at least I’m working on it again, and it has improved some already, which is encouraging.

    • says

      Years ago I severed a tendon in my pinkie finger and that has caused some issues with my crafting (mostly crocheting, it starts to feel stiff). I can’t imagine what a setback it would be to break your wrist.

      I need to set aside 15 minutes (or more) a day to draw, it’s just hard to get started and discouraging when you haven’t done it in awhile and aren’t as good as you hope!

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