be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars

These images represent the “new” me, or the me I’ve been working on since my departure from school. I’m trying to embrace who I am, leaving behind the self-criticism that became so toxic. When Nell told me to expand my valentine project, I decided again to make valentine’s to myself, but this time with a more optimistic and real feel.

I pressed all the flowers that were used for this project and took each photograph. I wanted to play with texture, but also create vivid/real images (which is why I decided to use photographs).

On a more technical level, I made a lot of use of layers in both Photoshop and Illustrator, which made it much easier to create precise images. I also had a lot of fun browsing through fonts for each of the images. I’m particularly happy with the “Hold On” font.

This project was a challenge for me both technically and emotionally. I wanted the valentine’s to be real, but I still struggle with being positive and kind to myself. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone, but I’m happy with the results.

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taking the valentines a step further

For these valentine’s I’m working with lots of different textures, man-made and natural.

Like the last series, these valentine’s will be addressed to myself. A study of attempted self-love, if you will.

Plenty more to come!

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anatomy, texture, and self-love?

Working on these valentines has been so much fun. I’ve really enjoyed playing with texture, contrast, size, and detail. All in all, I have made almost 10 valentines based off of 5 key images: a mason jar, an embroidered heart, a ribcage, a skeleton and a human torso (view of our insides).

The text “I took a deep breath and listened to the old bray of my heart. I am. I am. I am.” is a quotation from the novel The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. I just really felt that there was a strong connection between this text and the images of the heart and mason jar as well as a connection between the text and the message that I was trying to convey.

I am struggling with printing, I guess since all the computers have been updated there have been some issues, so I still have a couple large images to print, but hopefully that will happen soon.

The class critique we had on this assignment was really helpful – I started to play more with color and to really take every opportunity I could. Why not print 50 valentines??

Click for more images…

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i am i am i am – a valentine to myself


although I had some basic thoughts about what I wanted to do for this valentine assignment, I once again struggled with the purpose of my design. Who was I making a valentine for?

I realized that this would be a good opportunity to make something about me, kind of like a self-portrait through letters to myself.

While I feel a little exposed, I think this a good chance for me to say somethings I really mean and create valentines that aren’t limited by social boundaries — I can say anything to myself, I’m not limited by the rules of social engagement the way I would be if I were making valentines for another person.

It’s also a challenge – it’s not easy to make personal valentines to a person you don’t like very much. but maybe those are the people who need them most?

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valentine in progress

This is the second heart i’ve started to stitch for this project. I was initially (and may end up) cross stitching a very similar but smaller and solid image before this, however I like the way that the embroidery looks. I obviously still have a lot of work to do.

I spent a lot of time looking through old anatomy textbooks and my original plan was to place this stitched heart into a rib cage, but i’m now working on placing the heart into a sealed mason jar.

I have a lot of thoughts and I really need to focus myself. This weekend will be a great change to take pictures and work on Illustrator.

i think this is the font i’m going to use for my valentine (prophecy script)

and i just thought the poem was worth sharing.

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we heart it <– a “visual bookmark”

We Heart It allows you to create a photo album of images found online. I’ve found this website to be so helpful when looking for inspiration because it allows me to save the photos in a central location AND it creates a link to the original webpage the image came from. It’s like magic :)!

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some inspiration (image heavy)





find all the links at

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