Minted Recommended Frame Color

I've been lucky enough to win a few art challenges over at, more on that here and here. My latest are both Editor's Picks in the Three Cheers! Minted x West Elm's 3rd Art Challenge — Trumpets at Noon and Departure.

What follows is for you in the Minted community.

Launching (or self-launching) an art piece requires you recommend a frame color to potential buyers.

I always struggle to choose because I can't see my art in each frame. I'm a very visual designer, to which many of you can relate I'm sure.

To ease my pain, I created a Photoshop Document (PSD) in which I use one Smart Object to quickly display my art in all 11 frames.

Because it's so darn helpful, I'm sharing my PSDs with you. Here's how it works —

1 )  Click here to download the file,

2 )  Decompress (unzip) the downloaded file. Google knows how if you don't.

3 )  Open the folder and then the PSD that corresponds to the format of your art — landscape, portrait, or square.

4 )  At the top of the Layers panel, double-click the Smart Object thumbnail.

5 )  A blank canvas will open. Each canvas has been formatted to accept the low-res version of art you submitted to the challenge, the long side at 550 pixels. Here are the specific dimensions —

6 )  Paste your art on the blank canvas, save the Smart Object, and return to the original PSD.


Voila! I believe I'll go with Natural Premium Wood for this one.

Note: I created these files with Photoshop CC (2014). I can't guarantee they're compatible with older versions of the program, my apologies in advance if it doesn't work for you.

Happy framing!

I tinkered with m'pappy's old record player for a month, trying to get it up to speed, literally. I had it repaired professionally but still it played a beat slow. Eventually I gave up and ordered the Orbit, a new school record player from U-Turn Audio.

I found a great online marketplace for used vinyl, Discogs, from which Kathryn and I ordered a few to get us started. We picked favorites, but also carted some "must-haves" according to Google.

Admittedly I don't know much about Pink Floyd or Led Zeppelin. While I take them for a spin, square up with me and Spotify some Keith Whitley.

Minted Work of Art Challenge Winners

I posted a couple of months ago about being Minted, a fortunate series of events that led to my first art print sale on Since then I've racked up nearly 50 orders for Golden Gait and plenty of motivation to produce more work.

Apart from my occasional Instagram, I've not dabbled much in photography of the square format. But with a call for entries in a variety of crops, square included, these Minted challenges have encouraged me to look at my image library in a new way. You could say I'm on a square kick. And it seems to be paying off.

Two of my recent entries (pictured above) in Minted's Work of Art Challenge were chosen as winners. Sweet! 

Woodshed, an image from my father-in-law's ranch, was voted a winner by the community, and Skyscraping, a picture of an airplane from an airplane, was deemed an Editor's Pick by the Minted staff. Both pieces are for sale via my Minted Online Store

I'm riding this squared momentum with five fresh entries in the next challenge — Three Cheers! Minted x West Elm's 3rd Art Challenge.

West Elm actually chooses some winners to sell on their website. What?! Let's see what happens.



Golden Gait on

Had Kathryn known how obsessed I would get with the Minted x Domino Art Print Challenge she might not have told me about it in the first place. It came to her by way of an email from one of her favorite interior design magazines, Domino, in which they announced their partnership with, and a subsequent art competition.

Perhaps a friendly competition is one of the few things that fuels me more than the creative process, and so two weeks later I came up for air with seven entries.

Only 200 of the nearly 2,800 submitted art prints were chosen as winners, as voted on by the Minted community, or hand-picked by the Minted and Domino editorial teams. I was thrilled to learn my entry Golden Gait (picture above) was among the winning designs, deemed a Minted Exclusive Editors' Pick. Bangarang!

Before long my work was for sale in Minted's Art Marketplace and just last night I sold my first print! And no it wasn't my mother, I checked.

I've also self-launched one of my not-so-winning entries, Ficus lyrata, also now for sale in my Store. A massive 30" x 40" print of this Fiddle-leaf fig leaf is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. 

What motivation it is to sell a print! I'm working on some new ideas. 

Happy Holidays!

Halloween pumpkin carving illustration

I don't care for Halloween, I've never had a reason to. 

Growing up my mom dedicated a drawer in the kitchen to candy, it was there for the taking year-round. Costumes are terrible, like suits. And I'm more afraid of small children than any ghost or goblin.

The one thing I do like about Halloween is pumpkin carving, although I didn't cut one this year. Instead I thought we'd take a look back at pumpkins past.

In 2009 Kathryn and I carved what we call the Elvira pumpkin.

In 2010 we dominated a company pumpkin carving contest with this pumpkin lamp shade.

Shades of Orange we called it and made a timelapse video of the process.

Even tossing its rotting carcass in the dumpster was beautiful.

In 2011 I celebrated my move to Amazee Labs with a logo carving.

In 2012 I bought the biggest f****n pumpkin I could find and carved this beast. Here's how that went down.

Here I am doing some cosmetic dentistry with a bread knife.

Unfortunately, just like Frosty the Damn Snowman, all my pumpkins have since rotted away. They live on in pictures. And a few weeks ago I commemorated Ol' Biggin with the illustration you see up at the top of this post. I'm trying to convince Kathryn we should frame it :)

Happy Halloween!