Month: October 2015


John Coulter for Papyrus: Halloween

We’re having so much fun with this mix and match Halloween card by John Coulter for Papyrus.






This fun creative spin is something to ‘jump and scream’ about. Happy Halloween!


The Studio Ladies


Periscope Tomorrow: Oct. 27th @ 2:30 EST.

Please join me for a studio tour & I’ll also reveal how to determine how much talent you have! Don’t miss this. Download periscope ahead of time & find me @lillarogers.

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See you all then!




Rebecca Bradley illustrates for a charming cafe in London.

Hi Lilla,

I’ve been doing some work for a cafe in London in Rotherhithe.  I was lucky enough to able to visit this past summer!  Here is their site: Canada Water Cafe.  Yum! It’s been a fun project and was a great visit.

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Below are courtesy of their Instagram account: canadawatercafe


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Lots of Llama Love by Suzy Ultman

Hi Lilla,

There is lots of llama love in this poster set for my favorite Dutch kid’s shop, PSikhouvanjou. If it’s bears you prefer, “Thierry the Bear” is also available at PSikhouvanjou’s fabulous online shop. (ps. They ship to the U.S.!)  Order yours here today!







Mini Assignment #5: Orgy of organization

This coming Monday we begin the Make Art That Sells Parts A and B courses, LIVE for the last time.

(That means I’ll be doing reviews of the work in class, there will be the private Facebook group and more.)

If you haven’t signed up already, get crackin’ here because it all begins on Monday.

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So what I like to do before I start a project is to get my organizational system ready. And that’s what you’re going to do today.

Get a three ring notebook for all the downloadable handouts you’re going to get. You’ll get loads of forms, info sheets, tips and more, and you’re going to want to save them.

Go ahead and make tabs for your binder, one for each of the 5 weeks.

Here’s what I did, to show you what I mean:

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See you in class!




Mini assignment Number 4: I miss my home planet. #myMATSprep


Sometimes I swear I’m from another planet.

It’s all peaceful and beautiful there. I miss it.

Fill this in:
I miss my home planet.
It looks like ___________________________________ (describe). I had a really cool job on my planet. I was a ___________________.
My name was _________________. My planet’s name is _______________.
Coming from another planet explains why I _________________.

Why did I create this assignment for you? Because making art is about being a bit weird.

I can’t wait to see what you do!
#mymatsprep #myhomeplanet


Mini assignment Number 3: Draw your shoes

Today you’re going to draw your shoes in any style you like. Draw your way.

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*photo by Lilla Rogers

I picked this because it’s a common item and fun to draw.

Think about the view. You can draw a top view or a side view, for example.
Draw only in pen at a café on the back of your receipt.
Take only 15 minutes.

Why did I pick shoes for your assignment? So often we draw for a purpose: a job, a paid assignment, as a gift for someone, for our Etsy shop. That can put undue pressure on the experience of art-making. In my course I stress that you draw for the fun of it for the first few days of every week. I give you a specific topic to draw.

You love art, remember? For this, just draw. Get to know the subject matter. Have a play date with the subject matter. In class, I call these little drawings the Mini assignments.

For the purpose of Mini’s it’s also key to keep the thing you’re going to draw very finite and small so as to not overwhelm you like, for example, drawing the entire New York skyline.

Can’t wait to see your shoes!


Ps. It’s also key to have the subject matter something that matters to you, like your own shoes. That gives you a greater sense of involvement. However, art rules were meant to be broken, so you can draw shoes that you wish you owned, too.
#mymatsprep #shoes


THE BIG REVEAL! Announcing the 2015 Global Talent Search Winners


And the winner is…



Giant congratulations to Kate Mason for her extraordinary work! Her lush, ripe, saturated color infuses her patterns and product designs. It’s the opposite of a limited palette; it’s about subtle nuances of color. I love how she can have happy palettes and very sophisticated ones, too.

We believe in the broad appeal of her work, yet at the same time she’s able to convey a sophisticated, charming individuality. We feel that her style is irresistible.

We are delighted to now be the exclusive agency representing Kate. We can’t wait to fill her docket with commissions, licenses, and consultations with VIPs. Art directors, contact us to get dibs on Kate for your projects! Read more about the prizes Kate’s won here.

We’re thrilled to announce that we are taking on two more of the finalists!


Katie Vernon


Can you find the gnome in the piece above? Katie Vernon is a trend leader and a master watercolorist. She’s got a gorgeous color palette going on (I love her use of grey), charming hand-lettering, and an eye for quirk. You should see the florals and maps on her website. We’ve loved her work since she did the poster for our Global Art Gathering in Brighton, England. We are out-of-our-mind thrilled to now be representing her.

Clairice Gifford

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I loved Clairice’s final assignments that she delivered in the Make Art That Sells classes. Each assignment she turned in was a jaw-dropper of gorgeousness. Her design sense is impeccable and her lettering knocks our socks off. Even her logo is a gem. We’re excited about bringing this new look to our group. We’re thinking packaging, home decor, fabric, and tons more. See her work here.

Congratulations, winners! And a big congratulations to all the Finalists: Akiko da SilvaKatie WilsonNikki Upsher and Susan Evenson! You each did gorgeous work and we know your careers will thrive.

Read how we picked the winners here.

Lilla and the Studio Ladies


How we picked the three Global Talent Search winners: Nine points

1. Here’s the equation. It’s where a recognizable, masterful style with a strong point of view meets a highly marketable look for a range of markets. The larger the overlap, the better. Here are my notes written during our team meeting.

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Here’s Kate Mason’s work for the final assignment. It’s got it all.

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Can we envision getting loads of work for the artist in a number of categories such as home décor, bolt fabric, children’s books, magazines, wall décor, gift, paper, apparel, advertising? Yes.

2. We look at the body of work on the artists’ websites. Is it consistently strong? Are there plenty of images? Does it excite us?


Here’s Katie Vernon’s map from her site done for the Make Art That Sells ecourse. This stunning piece can get map work in editorial, and there are loads of icons here that can be repurposed for other markets, from bolt fabric to home décor.

3. Is the winner a good fit for the prizes, such as a home décor line with Margo Tantau, VP of Creative at Midwest CBK, a Dot&Bo product, etc?

4. How are the drawing and painting chops? Masterful use of color?

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As our artist Flora Waycott says “That Kate knows how to work her paintbrush”.

5. Is there work which embodies non-commercial exploration? This bodes well for career longevity. What’s too edgy now will be marketable in the future. Another way to say it is ahead of trend.

6. Is the design of the piece impeccable? We are talking design elements like balance, unity, movement, contrast, conflict as evidenced in Clairice Gifford’s work. Not to mention color.

7. We love lettering. Lettering gets work from greeting cards to ad campaigns. We loved the very polished and exciting typography we saw from Clairice Gifford in her final assignment.

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8. Is it a look that we don’t currently have, and that we’ve been looking for? We don’t want to cannibalize a style we already represent. It’s great to broaden our reach with new looks.

9. We pride ourselves on representing artists that maintain the utmost in professionalism. That means they meet deadlines, are pleasant to deal with, and so forth. This was evidenced in our communications with them in email and skypes, and how they delivered work of a consistently high standard in my courses and for the Global Talent Search.

So that’s the thinking behind making our selections. It’s an art, however, not a science, and it has to do with which artist is a good fit for our brand.

We truly loved all seven Finalists. We wish we could have taken them all on, and hope they’ll try again next year. (Both of our artists Flora and Kate entered the Global Talent Search two years in a row!)

Thanks to all of our judges!

Lilla and the Studio Ladies


Daily mini assignment Number 2: Market Survey #myMATSprep

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Your mission today is to take a photo of something in your house/apartment that you love, that has any kind of art on it, and identify its market.

I’ll go first.

Here’s my travel pencil bag. It’s a zipper tote by Blue Q with art on it that we licensed by our artist Carolyn Gavin.

#mymatsprep #giftmarket

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The “Gift Market” means things that you might buy as a gift for yourself or someone else. They tend to be smaller items, than say, the Home Décor market, which is things like lamps and pillows.

Next up: Here’s a journal that I love to travel with. It’s by Chronicle. We licensed our artist Suzy Ultman for this project. This would be categorized as for the Paper Market.

#mymatsprep #Papermarket

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Here’s a list of the ten markets I cover in the Make Art That Sells e-courses. Hopefully this will make identifying your product easier.


  • Bolt Fabric – This is fabric that you buy in the fabric store; fabric that you sew things with.
  • Home Décor – Anything to decorate your home such as a lamp, teapot, place mats, pencil holders, plates, etc.
  • Children’s Books – You know, children’s books.
  • Wall Décor – Anything on your wall. Framed, unframed, canvas reproductions, wall decals, etc.
  • Gift – Little items like tote bags, zipper pouches, frames, candles, jewelry, etc. Things you’d find in a gift shop.


  • Paper Market – Stationery, Journals, note pads, etc.
  • Baby Apparel – This means any baby clothing.
  • Scrapbooking Market – Not just the scrapbooking papers, but also stickers, stencils, etc.
  • Editorial – This means books and magazines.
  • Party Paper – All the stuff for a party, like paper plates, napkins, cups, goodie bags, etc.

Don’t worry about getting the market exact. This is not the Periodic Table of Elements. These are fluid markets. For example, a journal can be Gift Market or it can be considered the Paper Market. The purpose is to increase your awareness of the various key art-buying markets and any you may have preferences for. It’s also great for you to see the array of products that use art on them.

Can’t wait to see what you have around your house.