Saturday, January 31, 2009

Today's inspiration

As I have said before... my blog is about my drawing, my knitting, really all my creative outlets. But I also enjoy posting my inspiration, the things that make me want to continue creating on my own.

Today, I present you with Banksy. An artist from the UK.

I've been busy!

Hey everyone... no drawings to post today... but I have been drawing.

This has been a crazy couple of months for me. I got a job (a temp job, but still a job), and have been interviewing for permanent jobs. I've also been running a lot, getting ready for the marathon.

I look forward to posting more drawings shortly.

Friday, December 5, 2008

My first attempt at "designing" my own pattern

I decided I wanted to make a big "fat" winter hat. I'm using "fat" as a term of art, I'm not sure I could define it if I wanted to. So I started with a trip to the LYS (local yarn shop) and selected a big "fat" yarn... a beautiful eco friendly color that had minimal dying... it came from a brown sheep, and that made me VERY happy!

Buying yarn at the yarn shop means you have to wind it into a skein on your own... so I spent an evening just winding this very delicate "fat" yarn.
See how fat the brown yarn is compared to the blue? The blue is from a skein of worsted weight acrylic yarn I've been using for fingerless mitts.

Next, I found a pattern (I wasn't originally going to design my own pattern). It was a cute pattern, I was going to substitute the pom-pom on top with a tassel, and I was happy with that decision.

I realized that my gauge would be different than in the pattern so I would have to add some additional stitches to make a hat that would hit my head. I did a little math and then cast on to my big fatty size 11 needles. I love knitting in the round, so I went around... and around... and on the third round, something didn't look right... so I went around... and around again, and realized that instead of the ribbed pattern I was looking for, I got a seed stitch.

I counted my stitches... realized I dropped one somewhere, and decided I could do one of two things... tear the hat off the needles, or go with what I had. The seed stitch looked kind of nice, it was easy enough to continue with, and it had that Warren Miller snow boarder feel... so I went with it.

Unfortunately, I've never knitted a hat without strictly following a pattern before. So I made a few miscalculations about when to start tapering the hat for the head (oops), so the proportions look a little funny to me, and the hat has a couple of funny bump-outs.

When I finally finished the hat, it had kind of a cool beanie thing going on... but I wanted earflaps... so I began constructing those.

Now I am one earflap away from completion of a slightly flawed, but very well loved first attempt at hat design :)


Hello! I have decided to rededicate my blog... it's going to be more of a "creativity" blog than a drawing blog.

The reason? Well, I still draw, but sometimes my focus is on other creative outlets that I would love to share with any interested followers. Right now I'm in a knitting phase, so expect my blog to be a little knitting heavy, at least until Christmas... after Christmas I might revert back to posting my drawings, but I'm working on Christmas presents and a few more selfish ventures :-p

Sunday, November 23, 2008

They aren't drawings...

But they are still representations of my creativity.

These are some items that I knit (and sold) raising money for Paul Newman's Hole in the Wall Camp charities.

I really love knitting, and I had a lot of fun messing with these fun patterns and new yarns!

This is a scarf that I made. I couldn't believe it sold IMMEDIATELY! I'm sure it didn't hurt that the scarf was a part of a fundraiser for a very worthy cause, but still!

I'm definitely biased, but it was really pretty in person. It draped really nicely. The colors in it were really striking too, it reminded me of sea glass trapped in a fishing net. I'm making a similar scarf in a red and black yarn, but it's more delicate.

These are fingerless mitts that I made using a basic acrylic yarn. I made a pair of these for myself a few years ago because I worked in a cold office. I refined it after seeing some stuff that other people did, for example adjusting the amount of ribbing around the wrists and the hands

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I've been MIA lately

I will update my blog with new drawings either Wednesday or Thursday. I have been busy working on another project for the past few weeks. For those of you who don't know, I'm an avid runner. I have run two marathons in the past, and this year I have decided to commit to running the Boston Marathon for charity. I chose Team Hole in the Wall.

So here's my fundraising letter, I welcome any donations or support of any kind during the marathon training to come.

Dear friends,

On Monday April 20, 2009, I am going to run my third marathon, my first Boston Marathon, to benefit seriously ill children through Team Hole in the Wall. This is a cause near and dear to my heart, as someone who has worked with children with disabilities and who has volunteered for the Make-a-Wish Foundation. I decided that after passing the bar exam, I should give something back, to help those in need.

In addition to training, I have committed myself to raising $3,000 to help send a child with a life threatening illness to a Hole in the Wall Camp for a magical, life-changing experience. I would greatly welcome your support.

Childhood should be a carefree, happy time. For most children, it is. But for youngsters challenged by a serious illness like cancer or sickle cell anemia, childhood can be very different.

Founded in 1988 by Paul Newman, Hole in the Wall Camps are the world's largest family of camps for children with life-threatening illnesses. Thousands of kids are served each year at no cost to them or their families.

Hole in the Wall Camps offer a critical experience in the life of a seriously ill child, encouraging the heart, enlarging the spirit, and empowering the will, all year long. Hone in the Wall Camps give these youngsters serious tools – tools they can take into the world to help meet the challenge of serious illness long after their time at Camp is over.

I hope you will join me in supporting this important mission with your tax-deductible gift. To sponsor me, visit Click on "Be a Sponsor," select Boston Marathon, type in my name, Nina Villanova, and contribute to the goal of sending at least one child to a Hole in the Wall Camp.

While you're at it, check out what some of the campers and their parents have said about Hole in the Wall Camps (under "Get Inspired") and see if you don't agree that helping to change the life of a seriously ill child is pretty powerful stuff.

Many thanks for your support and encouragement!

With great appreciation,


Saturday, October 25, 2008

Fall Inspiration

A chicken in the woods :)

A walk in the woods.

A view of Boston over Hingham's Turkey Hill.