December Updates

225257_10151328845877992_47010467_n

The holiday season is upon us, there is snow on the ground, yet my mind (and blog drafts) are still in summer. I just wanted to take a moment to share a few updates since I’ve been really busy working and it’s almost Christmas already! Yikes.

P1020200

The editor of  IKEA FAMILY’S live magazine contacted me after finding my website and PAX wardrobe hack. I will be featured in their US Feb/March 2014 digital issue and I can’t even tell you how excited this makes me! I willingly spend Saturdays cramped on IKEA checkout lines, so it’s good to know it was all for a reason.

465396_121569504669536_4878013_o

The deadline turnaround was quick so I never finished all my home decor projects (admittedly, I had visions of grandeur), but we finally finished painting the home art studio/office/dining room – which has had undecided gray swatches on the wall for over a year.

DSC_0142

The final choice (below) was Gray Ghost by Olympic and I couldn’t be happier! It’s the perfect balance of white and gray with the most neutral undertone I could find.

ad7d880188911a67-DSC_0272

I’m used to featuring other people on Apartment Therapy, so it was exciting to be selected for an IKEA feature. And speaking of Apartment Therapy, my face was chosen for their latest job ad (upper left, below) and it made me chuckle:

13_122_AT

In other Apartment Therapy highlights, I’ve been photographing some really great spaces including author Emma Straub’s beautiful Brooklyn home, film and fiction writers Phil Gelatt & Vicky Dalpe’s historic house in Rhode Island. Later this afternoon my post for designers Bryan & Sarah Farevaag will go live, and I am just “over the moon” about their place. Puns! Yup, I did it.

AT_Bryan&Sarah_©AndreaSparacio

This October, I started a freelance design job with Charitybuzz. CB is a for-profit internet company that raises funds for nonprofit organizations through online charity auctions with notable celebrities and brands. They’re a great group of people, and in just a month or so my design skills have sharpened tenfold. I am currently designing & illustrating the company holiday card, working on graphics for accounts such as Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice & Human Rights, and helped conceptualize & animate the CB graphics for their New York Stock exchange bell ringing last Friday. CB has helped raise 100 million for different charities – congratulations!

1453374_10152074682592037_2103318595_n

In other work news, I am teaming up again with Wayfinder, Designer, and Strategist extraordinaire Katie Osborn on a very exciting project for 2014 – stay tuned for more! It’s going to be a great New Year.

photo 1 © Matthew Furber; photo 2 © Jane Foster; photo 6 © Apartment Therapy; photo 8 © Charitybuzz

New Site Design, New Portfolio

After spending endless hours offline to update my site design, I am very excited to be back! Thanks so much for your patience and I hope you enjoy the new look, portfolio, blog & art shop. I will be adding prints to my ETSY store, but in the meantime, I am gearing-up for my vendor table at Tinderbox Box Music Festival tomorrow.

Check out the amazing line-up (with headliner CocoRosie!!!) and get your tickets today. Hope to see you there ♥

illustration & photography © 2012 Andrea Sparacio (artsparrow); band photo © CocoRosie

Housing Works Illustration

I have been fortunate to work with the incredible people of Housing Works for several projects now, and was extra honored when the creative & marketing staff specifically requested me for their Spring 2012 brochure. With 32,000 copies made, in-store posters, ads in Time Out New York, and artwork illustrating this Sunday’s Housing Works Open Air Street Fair, I was super excited to collaborate! You can now pick up this brochure at any one of your local Housing Works. Here is a sample of the illustration process:

I was at the Park Slope location when I first saw the brochure & poster; I’m so happy with the way it all turned out:

Come & stop by the Open Air Street Fair THIS SUNDAY! June 3, 10am to 5pm on Crosby Street. There will be books, clothes, music, food and more. For more information, click the Housing Works site here. Hope to see you there! xo, artsparrow


Geek Week

Another fun promotional poster for Housing Works Bookstore Cafe! After showing about 12 concept sketches for Geek Week, the pocket-protector idea was chosen for the final.

Above & below are my work-in-progress shots; below is the first illustration with hand-lettering (I nixed it & ended up tightening the drawings); Housing Works chose the Star Wars typeface (Jedi Rounded) over Helvetica. Font geek out, yes!!

Working on Geek Week has conjured up my own geeky past. As a kid, I was fortunate enough to have access to my older brother’s Commodore 64 and we would play some pretty no-frill games for many years (Dino Eggs or Spy vs. Spy, anyone?) until the day our cousin gave us a cracked copy of Maniac Mansion on floppy disc. We popped it on the C64 when we got home and our jaws immediately hit the floor right from the animated open (see game open here). It all seems so silly now, but for 1987 these were some pretty advanced graphics. The fact that I could control more than one character in a point-and-click game totally blew my mind! We were so crazy about Maniac Mansion that we would fake going to bed until our parents fell asleep, only to reconvene and try to crack all the codes and puzzles. This started my love (and budding geekdom) over adventure games, Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders & The Secret of Monkey Island just to name a few!

My geeky childhood (and absolute love of British comedy) probably explains my flat-out obsession with Channel 4’s British sitcom The IT Crowd. I cannot get enough of this show and usually have it on in the background while I work. I’m still hoping for a Season 5 (fingers-crossed) or at least the dvd complete series for American viewing. In the meantime, I burn out NetFlix Instant with my favorite nerds of all time.

In honor of Geek Week, my next Inside The Portrait Studio will be portrait paintings of IT Crowd characters. Cavort!!!

illustration, photography & design © 2012 Andrea Sparacio (artsparrow); for more info on Geek Week, please visit  Housing Works Events; © 1987 Maniac Mansion screen-grabs, The IT Crowd’s poster & t-shirt (Moss)

Sugar & The Rumpus Poster Design

I have been dutifully keeping an juicy secret for months (which has now been released to the public): highly esteemed Dear Sugar from The Rumpus has revealed her identity as none other than Portland-based author Cheryl Strayed! The party is in celebration of her new memoir Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail.

I designed & illustrated the poster, overseen by a team of some really great people: Rachel Syme (the host), Amanda Bullock (Housing Works Events), Knopf (publisher), and Cheryl Strayed herself! Tickets to this event also include my printed poster, along with some other awesome goodies.

“All tickets include a commemorative poster by illustrator Andrea Sparacio, and entry into a raffle to win prizes like copies of WILD, “Write Like a Motherf—ker” Sugar swag, and a chance to win a one-on-one advice session with Sugar herself. We will also have a “Dear Sugar” box on site, where you can drop your secret questions and inspire one of Sugar’s future columns.”

What goes into making a poster design? Personally, I love seeing work-in-progress photos, so I thought I would share my own. I am in the middle of rearranging the furniture; below is my little Brooklyn home art studio #2 (see my first set-up here). But already as I type this, I have since moved into studio #3, with the most surface space & natural light I’ve ever had to date. Sometimes a little bit of rethinking (and furniture shifting) are all that’s necessary to get the most out of what you already have. I’m so in love with my new art space; updated photos definitely to follow!

I hand drew the detailed trees (below) in a light 4H pencil before digitally overlaying them on a separate gouache background.

Here is the final illustration without any text added, which Housing Works has chosen for t-shirt & cloth bag designs for more giveaways. It’s going to be such a fun night; I can’t wait!! Hope to see you all there, xo Andrea (artsparrow).illustration, photography & design © 2012 Andrea Sparacio (artsparrow); for more info on the event, please visit  Housing Works Events

A Foxy Valentine’s Week At Housing Works Bookstore

Check out this foxy poster I designed & illustrated for Housing Works Bookstore. Come to these fun events during Valentine’s week while supporting lifesaving services for homeless people living with HIV/AIDS. Your heart will feel better & all that soul-cleansing good stuff. See you there! ♡

illustration & design © 2012 Andrea Sparacio (artsparrow); visit Housing Works Bookstore Cafe