Well Chosen Letters Update #13:

Hello!

This last week has been a very interesting one. Have many things to share with you! We all have gotten over colds and sinus infections. Mine is the kind that does not want to leave me. My sinus infections might as well be called sinus affections because they do love me and find it very hard to say good-bye. But good-bye they must say.

First, let me say thank you to those of you who have reached out to me to help with my mom: my in-laws— who are the most generous people I know and are my biggest cheerleaders, gave me funds to send my mother supplies—, Shanshan, who sent me a gift card from Amazon, my church that has been more than generous, Denise, who also gave me funds to send my mom, and my hair dresser, Elisabeth who also contributed. Many, many thank yous! I am so touched by your generosity, kindness, and your care! Alex, thank you for your beautiful email too! So many of you have been so kind! I am profoundly grateful for you!

Puerto Rico still needs lots and lots of help. What can you do to help? Push the government to deploy its resources. Here is a place to contact: Defendpr.com/action. This site lets you write your congressman to mobilize things to help. You can also donate to these places:

I am still planning a type of donation event at the university. It just seems it will take a tad more time while we coordinate logistics.

And now, let me share with you what I have been up to these days. This last week we had designer and entrepreneur Dustin Lee, who is the founder of RetroSupply Co as a guest speaker at the University. Diane Gibbs organized the event along with other departments at the University. I learned many things in this talk and Dustin’s story is very inspirational. Basically he went from being broke to making almost a quarter of a million dollars a year. I like saying that because it sounds more impressive than saying the exact amount which was $230,000. He shares this freely, so no worries. Of course I took notes in my usual way. See below.

 

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

I had lunch with Dustin on Monday along with my former student Suzanne, who works for him, and Diane. He is an amazing person and I was very touched that he was very concerned about Puerto Rico and my family. Because of some of the things he said during his talk, I was inspired to open a shop on Creative Market.

Creative Market is a different type of shop than RedBubble and Threadles. Instead of selling goods with my art, this shop is to sell assets or resources for others to use. So, I spent time creating some watercolor backgrounds to scan and put together to sell there and see how it goes. I realize that at some point, I will need to zone in one and build that one, but I am still unsure where to put all my focus. Thus, I am testing different things. Below is a photos of some of the watercolor backgrounds I have created.

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

These backgrounds are done on printmaking paper instead of watercolor paper. The paper absorbs the color in a different way than the watercolor paper. But the color does not lose its translucency. Along with these backgrounds, I am planning to develop a typeface too and try to sell it. Yes, that is among the many other things I have to do and I am doing. That leads me to something else. When I had lunch with Dustin, he asked me when and how did I make time to work on my lettering and creative pursuits and whether when I was done for the day at the university, I shut off university stuff. I wish I was that organized and compartmentalized my life in such a way. But no, I don’t.

What I do that works me for is that I practice or pursue my interests— and this applies to writing articles and chapters for the book— wherever I am. I take things with me: a pad, a pencil pouch with more pens and pencils than I can fit in there, sometimes I drag my computer too, and drawing supplies with me. The image that opens the newsletter is an image of an exercise I was doing for a class on Skillshare that I am taking while I waited for my kids at swim practice. I don’t have more time than anyone else. I carve time to pursue these things. I wrote the chapter proposal for my book in between swim practices and home. Or sometimes instead of plainly watching a movie or a show, I do it while I am working on something. I so appreciate the rewind button! ?

And speaking of carving time out to pursue things you would like to learn or do, I am participating for the first time in Inktober. During the Q/A of my talk at Smashing Conference 2017, someone in the audience asked me if had ever done Inktober. I said no, I was actually intimidated by it.

Inktober is an annual challenge created by illustrator Jake Parker. He started it with the desire to improve his drawing skills and it grew into a movement. I used to be very, very good at drawing and this is one of the things I am hoping to improve on. However, since this was my first time, I thought I would do lettering. It turns out that a lot of people are doing lettering as well. So, I am in good company.

What I am doing differently than my usual postings is that I am taking a video of me lettering the prompt for the day. I can’t post each video here (it requires a paid subscription) but I can link for you the list of videos so far or you can go to my Instagram page and take a look.

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

© 2017 Alma Hoffmann

Couple of things before I go:

Hurricane Nate is supposed to hit us this weekend. Please keep us in your prayers and thoughts! I am scheduled to fly out on Monday to Chicago. My client, Jon Nielson at Spring Valley Presbyterian Church is flying me out to give a workshop on InDesign so that they are able to implement the new Sunday bulletin design I did for them. I have Noah Toly to thank for this! He recommended me to Jon and I was hired! Thank you Noah! I am very excited! But there is a chance that the flights will be canceled Monday.

Also, if you would like to see my talk at Smashing Conference, you can! Visit here. And no, I will never see it. It is a thing of mine. Not seeing myself or hearing myself. You go and enjoy it!

    • I am available to create beautiful things for you! Or to teach a workshop on lettering, design process, problem solving, creative thinking, learning the design programs, etc.. Let’s talk!
    • I am slowly able to work on new pieces but please do let me know ideas for my next show!
    • Also, do you want me to design your Christmas cards? If so, let’s talk!
    • Don’t forget to visit my store on RedBubble!
    • Or visit my Etsy store!

And with that, I wish you a great weekend and a fabulous week ahead! Until then my friends!

 

 

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