Giveaway! {Fashion Illustration Books}

I have two exciting Fabulous Doodles giveaways! Enter to win one of the fashion illustration books I recently worked on: Girly Girl Style and Harajuku Style, both illustrated by moi, Brooke Hagel. I posted about both books a few weeks ago when they were first released, sharing peeks inside as well as little descriptions and insights, which you can check out here.
Two winners will be chosen, one for each book. To enter simply click on the link below and follow the instructions. Easy peasy! You can enter multiple ways to earn more entries, so make sure to enter your email, tweet and give a Facebook like. The winners will be chosen randomly by Rafflecopter. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Eva Mendes Sketches for Vogue Eyewear Party

A little over a week ago I flew to LA to live sketch at Vogue Eyewear's party celebrating Eva Mendes as the new face of their campaign. Before heading out west I sketched a bunch of fashion illustrations of Eva in various frames based off campaign shots that the lovely group at Luxottica, Vogue Eyewear's parent company, had sent me. I drew Eva in about six different eyewear looks, scanned the art and emailed them off to Luxottica in Milan and their PR company in New York. Then I crossed my fingers that all parties involved would like them.
Well, like them they did, because when I arrived at the event in Beverly Hills the space was filled with large framed prints of my illustrations. I even overheard some of the Luxottica ladies talking about shipping them back to Milan for their offices! Since Eva was hosting the soiree I decided to bring signed mini prints of the sketches for her, and was told she loved them too.
I'm still editing photo's of the event which I'll share later in the week, including some live-sketches I drew of the party guests and photo's of the sexy venue but in the mean time I wanted to post a few of my favorites of the beautiful Eva Mendes.

Dry Bar Hair Menu Sketches

Next week I'm heading out to LA to live sketch at a party in Beverly Hills. Since press will be there I was thinking I'd treat myself to nice blowout before the event so I called the hotel concierge to find out if they knew of a blow dry bar nearby. I know this sounds ridiculous but it reminded me that I have yet to share here the new hair menu sketches I was commissioned to illustrate for the Blo menu and site.
This new hair menu is quite different from the previous sketches I've worked on for them (both their first hair menu and the Barbie NYFW menu.) These are more stylized and sketchy and all have a similar stoic face, which was requested by the client. We went back and forth a bit on coloring effects and in the end they asked if their graphic designer could add in the splashes of color, which is something I've never had done before, as normally all my sketches are my hands only. I like how they came out though and its great to see them all finished and up on the Blo site. Their Beverly Hills locations not open yet, its coming soon, otherwise I'd be heading there this week to see the menu and get my hair blown. 

Creativity & the Importance of Changing It Up

(Olivia Palermo inspired Fashion Illustration by Brooke Hagel) 
I'm so excited about these new sketches, especially this first one shown above. Lately I've felt stuck in a creative rut. I've been digging out some old tools and trying new things but nothing was doing the trick or "clicking." I revisited illustrating in charcoal and conte crayon, and playing around with fine point pens but that just didn't do it. A few weeks ago I dug out my watercolors in hopes that some paint would invigorate me and freshen up my illustrations, and although I had some fun and came up with a few [Golden Globe inspired] fashion illustrations, it just isn't for me at this time. After accidentally shattering the glass I used to clean brushes all over my glass desk, which then splintered into a million little shards and cut me up to the point where for two weeks it looked like I had been attacked by a cat, I decided to put the paints away. The accident also destroyed a client project I had to then redo, but luckily it just missed my new Macbook! So major crisis averted there.
A week or two ago I finally had a wave of creativity by delving into a new medium, black craft papers with white. I'm not sure if it was brought on by a stack of colored card stock paper that happened to be sitting beside me (waiting to be organized in the revolving mess that is my home office) or that I happened to be on Anthologys website that morning looking at the art of chalkboard artist Dana Tanamachi, but I decided to grab a sheet of black paper, pull up my "She's a Sketch" Pinterest board and try out a sketch in all white. Well one sketch quickly turned into three (shown above taped to my wall) and was hooked! They'd be too costly in printer ink with the full black background to make and sell prints of for my Etsy bridal shop but I'm just thrilled to be excited by drawing again and these high contrast brides were the first step in a developing my new illustrations and new style that I'm so loving now.
After black I decided to try out some of the silver, gray and tan papers as well. I also added more tools to the illustrations to try out different effects. I started with only white pencil and white charcoal but have now added black sharpies, Copics, opaque white markers and colored Prismacolor pencils. I'm so excited and invigorated by these new sketches. I happen to be traveling but I'm eager to try printing these once I'm back in my studio and seeing if I can easily reproduce them and make prints for Brooklit. I especially like the illustrations on the tan craft paper, both in the final resulting look of them and the process of creating them. It feels great to be excited about sketching again.
Honestly its a challenge to stay creative and passionate when your passion becomes a business, and clients want a specific style or look and it can feel really stale and uninspiring. Even though I'm a person who tends to resist change I'm learning that its important to change it up from time to time and try new things, especially in my artwork. In this case it was finding a new medium that's exciting me and livened up my work but it could be any change. A change of scenery, or maybe enrolling in a class and trying new techniques or sketching from models instead of images on paper, a screen or your imagination.

Thank you for all the encouragement. Working solo without a team around you is sometimes tough but every time I tweetedInstagramed (@Brooklit) or texted something I was working on, I received such wonderful feedback and encouragement. I can't wait to continue playing with these new tools and techiniques and see where it takes me.