Take a peek in my sketchbook + studio

 

Drawing on this ukulele was super fun this afternoon and evening, despite the 110 degree heat index! I thought I’d make more progress, but nobody moves quickly in that kind of heat! The raffle went over well and I’m pleased to announce that Tom Deedle won the finished ukulele…as soon as I actually finish drawing it, seal it and figure out how to put it together! I’ll definitely do another similar thing soon. Thanks to everyone who bought tickets!

Drawing on this ukulele was super fun this afternoon and evening, despite the 110 degree heat index! I thought I’d make more progress, but nobody moves quickly in that kind of heat! The raffle went over well and I’m pleased to announce that Tom Deedle won the finished...

Come watch me draw live on a ukulele!

Come see me this Saturday evening at the Smedley Artisan Night Market and watch me draw live on a ukulele! Not cool enough? I’m going to raffle off the finished uke at the end of the evening. Come join me and other artist vendors and demos, live music, cocktails, a...

Peonies + Fireflies

Indiana’s state flower is the peony. The state insect is the Say’s Firefly. This one was super fun to draw and it needed to be a nighttime feel to show the fireflies! Now I feel the need to draw some open peonies. I wish I could just draw all day every...

It just occurred to me that I should make umbrellas!

It just occurred to me as I was getting drenched under my ugly broken beige umbrella that I should make umbrellas available with my bright designs! Currently working on getting these set up and uploaded to my website. Who is interested in buying one? What other images...

Violets and a monarch butterfly

Illinois state flower, the violet, and the state insect, the monarch butterfly. I kind of went nuts on this one and filled the page with violets! I also kind of love it!

Mock Orange

Idaho’s state flower is the mock orange. The state insect is the monarch butterfly, but it flew...

Hibiscus and Kamehameha

Hawaii state flower and insect. Hibiscus and Kamehameha butterfly. Somehow each flower and insect I draw get more and more detailed!

It’s been a while…

It’s been a while since I posted one of my state flower drawings. Back in the swing of it now with Georgia’s state flower and insect. The Cherokee rose and honeybee.

Brightly colored flowers not your thing?

Brightly colored flowers not your thing? Prefer something a little more out there? These little guys will be with me tomorrow and Saturday at Raven &  Moth

Beauty is pain relief

Pulled from an old sketchbook. I don’t remember what I was writing about or if I heard or read the line “beauty is pain relief” or wrote it myself… but it still feels true. Second line is also true....

beautiful things

The best friends are ones that make beautiful things and send you dead things in the mail! Thanks for the tiny lizards,...

… Really, mom?

#Repost @marycthorsby ・・・ Really, mom? You think I’m gonna leave my girlfriend @nikkidale’s side and go for a walk with you? I’m busy being her...

Sunflower

Skipping a few states alphabetically to draw Kansas’ state flower – the sunflower – since so many people have requested sunflower prints and products! #ijustwanttodrawprettypictures #sunflowers #sunflowers...

Wood Blocks

I think it’s time to start drawing on more wood blocks soon. I miss them. What other objects should I draw on? #ijustwanttodrawprettypictures

Spring FINALLY arrived

Look! Spring FINALLY arrived, and with it some pretty daisies – April’s birth month flowers – to decorate your devices. Follow the first link in my bio to sign up to get these wallpapers, keep up with what’s going on in my studio and get a new flower each month!...

Peach Blossom

This week’s state flower is from Delaware, the peach blossom. The state insect is the ladybug.

Texas Bluebonnet + Honeybee Products Now Available!

I took a little break from drawing last week to work on getting some of my state flower + insect drawings on products to sell. First up, Texas Bluebonnets! Scroll through to see all the products I’ve made available so far. All the rest of the flowers coming soon(ish)....

MarchMeetTheMaker: Product in use

Day 31 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Product in use/wild For the final day of this challenge (one day late), I thought I’d show a photo of myself with two of my creations. The necklace is from my Branches and Bones collection of jewelry (available at Raven & Moth and...

Day 30 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Support

Oh wow, how can I choose just one thing to post for this one? I have gotten so much support from so many people over the years! First up – my parents. From believing in my art enough to send me to art school and supplying me with whatever art supplies I needed as long...

Day 29 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Most difficult make

Day 29 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Most difficult make Everything I make requires precision and a very steady hand, but probably none more so than the jewelry I make with these tiny little slices of tree branches. It’s hard to tell in this photo, but the little pieces of...

Day 28 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Packaged

Most of my work that gets shipped out is print on demand and comes directly from the manufacturer, so there’s not a whole lot I can do about the packaging. My favorite POD company is Printful. Aside from having a great variety of high quality products, they allow you...

Day 26 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Self care

Sitting outside with a sketchbook and a cup of coffee. Even just taking my work outside when the weather is nice. Taking a long hot bath. Drawing for hours and hours. Great food and drinks with even better friends.

Day 24 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Customers/feedback

My favorite feedback is when a woman sees my drawings and see herself in them. I’ve heard from many women that one of my of my curvy nude women looks just like her own body and is beautiful, so it makes her feel better about her own curves. Or someone wanting a...

Day 23 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Top tip or advice

I’m a few days behind again… but still in the game! Which kind of feels like it applies to my art career, but substitute years for days… or even decades! Which brings me to my advice. Start now. Do a little something every day… even if it’s nothing but drawing a few...

Day 22: Proud of

Day 22: Proud of I posted this project on day one of #MarchMeetTheMaker for “favorite to make,” but I’m sharing it again today for the “proud of” prompt. Paducah has a wonderful non-profit art center called the Yeiser Art Center (@yeiserartcenter) that supports local...

Day 21 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Throwback

Day 21 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Throwback These images are from 1991-1993 when I was in grad school at @scaddotedu. I started grad school as a painting major and did the last two paintings in this post during my first year. Everyone in my classes and the professors who...

Day 20 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Design process

Day 20 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Design process My design process is pretty fluid. I start with a general idea, gather (or take my own) photographs for reference and start by doing a light pencil sketch of the main subject – whether that’s a figure or insect or...

Day 19 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Dream collaboration

Day 19 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Dream collaboration I don’t really have a specific company that I dream about working with, but I would definitely like to license my work to companies that make fabric, wallpaper, bed/bath products, tableware/kitchen products, etc. I...

Day 18 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Mistake or lesson

Day 18 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Mistake or lesson I’m not sure if I’d really call this a mistake or lesson, but my biggest ongoing challenge in my art and design career (and the rest of life, too, for that matter) is my struggle with being organized, managing my time...

Day 17 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: What I’m working on

Day 17 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: What I’m working on Sundays are my planning days. The sun came out and so Pixel and I sat outside for a bit to do some planning for the upcoming week. I’m using the 15 Minute Planner Method by @stephcrowder_ from my current favorite...

Day 16 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Workspace (tidy/mess)

Day 16 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Workspace (tidy/mess) I have a lot of different workspaces in my home/studio for different things that I do. Here are photos of most of them. Know that if it looks tidy it’s because I just spent time cleaning and organizing and haven’t...

Day 15 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Motivation/Goals

Day 15 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Motivation/Goals⁣ ⁣ My main goal has always been to be able to be a full time artist. I’m fortunate to be able to support myself with creative work, between web design and branding and art – and to be able to work for myself for the past...

Day 14 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: How I learned

Day 14 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: How I learned I’m a couple of days behind on these posts, so I’m going to try to catch up this weekend, so expect a few more posts from me than usual. Back on day 2 for “how you started”, I talked about making ceramics and drawing as a...

Day 13 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Photography

Day 13 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Photography Taking photos of my work… I absolutely do not have a good process for this! Since I’m doing mostly digital things these days, it’s not an issue, I just have to save the files from Procreate or Photoshop or Illustrator. A lot...

Connecticut’s state flower is the mountain laurel.

Connecticut’s state flower is the mountain laurel. White flowers are difficult to draw/paint. Too much white and they look flat and lifeless. Too much color and, well, they aren’t white anymore. I’ll have to add the state insect when I have a chance. Don’t forget to...

Day 12 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Hands at work.

I love drawing on unusual things… my car, animal bones, this ukulele that a friend commissioned from me. You should probably hire me to #doodleonyourstuff #ijustwanttodrawprettypictures

Day 11 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Reducing waste

I almost skipped today because I’m embarrassed to say that I haven’t done much to reduce my impact on the environment. For now, the best thing I can say is that I’m doing most of my drawing these days on the iPad and not using paper and ink… but that’s really not...

Day 10 of MarchMeetTheMaker is You

Day 10 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is You Hmmmm… about me. I’m Nikki D. May. I always include the D when I write my name because people – especially in the south – seem to want to think my name is Nikki May, like Betty Sue or Bobby Jo. It’s not. My name is also not Nicole,...

Day 9 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is Story behind your name

Day 9 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is Story behind your name I do both my design and art work under the name Nikki D. May Art + Design. But this hasn’t always been the case. When I first started doing freelance design and illustration in 1996, I chose the name Blue Frog...

Day 8 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Product line

Today is day 8 of #marchmeetthemaker: Product line. Here are the aprons I had made from my #birthmonthflowers. I also put them on pillows, mugs and tote bags. And of course my 2019 Birth Month Flower Calendar. All available for...

Day 6 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is Full or part time

Day 6 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is Full or part time This is a hard question to answer. I am fully self employed and I piece my living together from several things, all related to making. I make drawings, jewelry, mixed media art, products with my drawings, logos and...

Rocky Mountain Columbine

Colorado’s state flower is the Rocky Mountain Columbine and its insect is the Colorado Hairstreak Butterfly. Don’t forget to look at @unclebacons50stateflowers to see his cool block printed version!...

Day 4 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is Tools & Materials

Day 4 of #MarchMeetTheMaker is Tools & Materials I have different areas of my studio set up for different types of work that I make. So here is an example of each of the kind of things that I make. . The first four images are my true love and what I would keep...

Day 3 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Flatlay

Day 3 of #MarchMeetTheMaker: Flatlay Here’s one of some of my very favorite things: my drawings of curvy women with long hair (I love drawing hair!), leaves and insects, my newest favorite tool, the iPad and Apple Pencil, and my MacBook. All on the table I use as a...

MarchMeetTheMaker: How you started

  Today’s #MarchMeetTheMaker prompt is “How you started” I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember, but the story we tell in my family about how I really got started in art is about me and my sister. We both took ceramics and gymnastics classes when we were...

#MarchMeetTheMaker Challenge

Because my weekly self-directed challenge isn’t enough of a commitment, I’m also doing @joannehawker’s #marchmeetthemaker challenge. So expect a daily post that will let you learn more about me and my art. First prompt: favorite to make. I make a lot of different...

four-spot skimmer dragonfly

I’m catching up on the state insects that I’m behind on. This is Alaska’s forget-me-not with the four-spot skimmer dragonfly. #ijustwanttodrawprettypictures

California state flower and insect

California state flower and insect – California poppies and the California dogface butterfly! Don’t forget to click over to see @unclebacon65’s sweet little poppy block print!...

Arkansas’ state flower!

Arkansas’ state flower, the apple blossom, sprouted up underneath my honeybee! Click on over to @unclebacon65 to see his pretty apple blossom, too. Prints and products with these state flowers coming soon!...

Oops, did you forget?

Oops, did you forget to get your Valentine a gift for today? Get one of these heart + leaves t-shirts or mugs and show them your love all year long!

Arizona’s state flower: saguaro cactus blossom

Arizona’s state flower is the saguaro cactus blossom. This one took a looooong time to complete because of the amount of detail in the center of the flower, the two weeks that I was sick, a visit from @unclebacon65 and two trips out of town! Let’s see if I can back to...

Happy February everyone!

Happy February everyone! It’s cold and rainy here in Kentucky, so here are some violets to help you pretend it’s spring. Want these pretty flowers in your inbox and on your devices every month? Find the link in my bio and sign...

Alaska’s flower, the forget-me-not

Back to alphabetical order (for now, at least) with Alaska’s flower, the forget-me-not. My dragonfly (the four spotted chaser) isn’t quite done yet, so you’ll just have to wait patiently. I know you are all on the edge of your seats waiting… I had an especially...

State Flowers: Missouri

This week’s state flower is the Hawthorn, Missouri’s state flower. I had planned to do them in alphabetical order, but I had a specific reason to do Missouri next. I’ll share that soon. This drawing ended up being a lot more detailed than I had planned, and I ran out...

2018 Year in Review Part 2: Art

Last week I wrote about my travel experiences in 2018. Check it out. I love to do daily challenges. If I haven’t committed to something very specific, it’s too easy to realize that 5 days have gone by without doing any drawing. In 2017 I did a huge one  my...

Paducah Life Magazine

Starting in April I participated in the worldwide #the100dayproject and learned to do repeat pattern designs and basically made one a day for 100 days. Posting them on Instagram every day as I was designing them got me some good attention and resulted in this...

How about a #fridayintroductions post for the new year?

How about a #fridayintroductions post for the new year and my new followers? I’m Nikki, an artist and designer living in the small artsy river city of Paducah, Kentucky. I moved here 15 years ago from Atlanta – can you say culture shock? – and I love it! I...

Second state flower in progress.

Second state flower in progress. Not going in any particular order, despite starting alphabetically last week. Any guesses on what flower this is?

State Flowers + Insects

In October I participated in the #inktober challenge of doing an ink drawing every day of the month. I drew the 12 birth month flowers and made a gorgeous (if I do say so myself) calendar with the drawings. I love to do daily challenges. If I haven’t committed to...

2018 Year in Review Part 1: Travel

I think I did more traveling and more drawing/designing in 2018 than ever before. I also had a few bizarre health issues. I had planned for this post to include sections for all of those, but since it’s gotten so long, I’ve decided to break it into several...

Happy New Year from the Snowdrop

Like a lot of people, I’m working on an epic year end review that I will post in the next day or two. In the meantime, happy New Year from the Snowdrop, the birth month flower for January. If you haven’t gotten your calendar for 2019 yet, there’s still time to grab...

A Brief List

1. Brought my important things on vacation with me: Caroline Zook’s Your Brightest Life Journal, The Sketchbook Project and my birth month flower journal2. I may have overdone the poppies.3....

How perfect for me is this?

How perfect for me is this gift from my BFF Aynex? I participated in this project back in 2012 and have been meaning to do it again. Thanks so much, Aynex! ️️

Need a last minute gift?

Hey Paducah! Need a last minute gift? A bunch of my branch and bone jewelry is available at both Raven & Moth and Bricolage Art Collective. All are one of a kind pieces and most are under $50!

Jumping on the #topnine2018 bandwagon.

Jumping on the #topnine2018 bandwagon. Interesting combination of patterns, flowers, fruits and veggies and nudes here. What do you want to see more of from me in the upcoming year? Open to suggestion…...

Free Shipping Day

It’s just come to my attention that tomorrow is #FreeShippingDay, so use the super unique code FREESHIPPING when you buy anything on my website all day tomorrow, Friday, December 14th. I have about a gazillion products under $50 that make great Christmas gifts! Check...

It’s my birthday

It’s my birthday and I have a gift for everyone! 10% off any purchase on my website (nikkimay.com) one day only, December 10th! Use coupon code NIKKI51 at checkout. Discount and pretty things for you, sale for me. Everybody wins! Feel free to tell me there is no way I...

Small Business Saturday 2018

I will be at the @smedleyyeiser tomorrow for #smallbusinesssaturday with all of these beautiful flowers! I will have calendars, prints in two sizes (4×4 and 8×8, pillows with these beauties on them. I’ll also have a big selection of prints and original drawings of my nudes and a handful of other goodies! Come see me and a bunch of other talented local artists and #shopsmall!

Tote bags and canvas pouches

Tote bags and canvas pouches with my birth month flowers! Just got some samples in and they are gorgeous! #ijustwanttodrawprettypictures

This is how you know your favorite online community really gets you!

This is how you know your favorite online community really gets you! Thank you Caroline Kelso and Jason Zook for the most thoughtful personalized gifts ever. I’m thrilled to be a #WAIMer! Anyone who is starting/growing/running an online business and is looking for...

Aprons!

Newest products available with my birth month flowers… aprons! Available to be shipped all over the world! Details in link in bio.