Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Xmas bumps and a Medley of Inkscape Demos

#inkscape #demos

Hey folks its Christmas and 30 Celsius plus with no air conditioning where I am so if the next few posts are random bumps of older ones ... thats why !

here's an image medley of a few earlier  #inkscape #filter #demos

Sunday, 24 December 2017

12 days of rewards

#patreon #rewards #free

People for the 12 Days of Christmas I am going to try and put up at least one FREE reward EVERY DAY on my

Wednesday, 20 December 2017


a #png for those doing last minute designs
hope you like the textures I choose

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Xmas Humor and Papyrus Font

You can get some interesting effects using #papyrus #font with some drop shadow added !

yeah this isnt Greek or Latin but i'm trying in English to get the "flavour" of what an ancient interchange of office memos between Hierosolyma and Bethlehem  might have looked like ...

Tuesday, 12 December 2017


#png #freebie #inkscape #download #JVartndesign

This graphic

 is a FREE Download from my

 DeviantArt  page 

and also my

 JVartndesign PATREON 

Sunday, 10 December 2017

About Xmas Rewards on Patreon

#patreon #rewards #paypal

Okay because of the fee structures fiasco I do NOT want Patreon ripping off me or you at Xmas!

But I did promise REWARDS so here's the deal.

If you do any of the following when donations or income hit $100 dollars I will put extra rewards up over the 12 days of Xmas and a bit earlier too!

You WILL get a couple of freebie cards on DeviantArt or Patreon
 but I will post EXTRA FREE rewards for people
who are Patreon members or ACTUAL Followers / Pledgers

I'm saving up to get funds for two things: some PRO PR for my sites and designs and a series of Domestic repairs / replacements and like a lot of artists I'm not highly paid by some inner city design agency or gallery !


If I hit my minimum of $100 in sales from my DeviantArt or RedBubble
I will put up extra Xmas Freebies on DeviantArt or Patreon  and more for $50 over that minimum.

Likewise if I get $100 minimum in Paypal donations more freebies for everyone!

Note thats 100 dollars in accumulated donations or sales NOT PER PERSON!

Saturday, 9 December 2017


The news about the new #patreon fees has made me so @$@$@#%@ I can't focus on finishing Christmas cards for you




and this is quite restrained you should see whats being posted on Twitter! 

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

3 Christmas Cards

#Gothicfont #xmas #card #humor #freebie

While I'm working on this years Xmas Freebies and Cards here's a few little things from last year to tide you over.

note this first file is a jpg not png 

let me know if its easier for you to download them from DeviantArt or Patreon? 

If you download this you might want to experiment with drop shadow the file is a transperent Bg png ?

Feel free to add a textured or colored background layer! 

Saturday, 2 December 2017

ITS OKAY TO BE ... new Patreon reward

#patreon #anti-racism #itsokaytobewhite #itsokaytobe #racism #politics

This is my rebuttal / parody of the Its Okay to be White alt right campaign

To get your free downloadable PNG please go to

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Why is this Martian Angry?

#martianmanhunter #dcumovies #jla

Why is this Martian Angry? Well grumpy and serious like he hasnt had his OREO fix !

 Read on there is a design angle!

One thing that really annoys me about the JLA movie apart from the overusage of CGI is the TOTAL absense and NOT even a brief mention of a founding JLA member the Martian Manhunter!

DC you are missing out on a Golden Opportunity to support some great design work!

Now the Manhunter is currently on TV in Supergirl but I for one would love to see him have a whole movie or TV series of his own.

He's a shapeshifter so you could have several actors playing the part or as episode guests and actors of multiple ethnicities. Its canon in most recent versions John Jones is not his only human identity.

Now for some of the design opportunities and challenges for the character.

Costume should they go for the original 50s version or full body costume to reduce makeup time?

SFX and CGI 
flashbacks to Mars 
flashbacks to Erdels 50s style science lab 
showing alternate Martian forms the avian or the green "elf" look.
using his invisibility powers 
doing partial transformations 

Seriously DC please do the Martian Manhunter!

Make this Martian Happy!

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Help me chose which Effingist design!

#effingist #design #JVartndesign

Here's 4 designs I've been working on using a made up word EFFINGIST (Copyright Julie Vaux 2017) They were made in #Inkscape and have yet to received their final edits.

It's meant to be used as an insult yet also for irony  a comment on ideology.

Which design do you think is good enough to put up on Red Bubble?

All variants copyright Julie Vaux 2017

Copyright Julie Vaux 2017

Copyright Julie Vaux 2017

Copyright Julie Vaux 2017

Copyright Julie Vaux 2017

Also would you rather see Red or Black for the Font Color?

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Viner Hand Font Demo

#font #demo #inkscape #typography #VinerHand

This was created in Inkscape. I may do a further demo shwoing what this looks like with a stimulated paper texture added as a bottom layer. Don't forget if you're adding a layer in Inkscape or Gimp for a texture background to merge the layers and maybe add a little dropshadow to the layer with text and Transparent backgroundsfor the text layer until the final merge or export!

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Tree of Trees

This is  my #xmas but also useful for other occasions Design



on #clothing #cards and gift items ! NOW

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Birds and Vines - Can you name the Style?

#mosaic #birds #grapes #vine

Do you think this is Roman or Byzantine?

The Script across the top is a clue!

It's from an 



.... Armenian Orthodox church

in Jerusalem

Saturday, 4 November 2017

North and South and Grapes


Painting Grapes Culture and Climate and Light.

This first image is by a 17th century female painter Rachel Ruysch

Note the tonal contrast and the preference we also see in other 17th century paintings for dark backgrounds. But is it a cultural preference or simply the result of Northern light being different?
 Was the scene lit by candlelight or sunlight filtered through a glass window? Given the lack of refrigeration this was probably painted in late summer or autumn when the grapes and peaches were freshly harvested. So that's another lighting factor?

Now an image I showed you last time. Bear in mind the painter is a 19th century Italian and also that Italy is further south and gets more sun. 

Is it culture or climate that is shaping how light is described and rendered ?

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Two Styles for rendering grapes

Two Styles for rendering Grapes.

This first image is by a 19th century Italian painter.

For contrast here's a 19th century Japanese print in ukiyo-e style. 

The Italian Oil Painting has beautiful rich colors and you can almost taste the grapes.
The Japanese print lacks shadows but still has tones and a sense of depth creating by the curves plus an element of humor.

Both are masterpieces of still life in different ways .

Sunday, 29 October 2017

More images of the grape harvest

Three contrasting images of the grape harvest.

Southern Europe Northern Europe and one from a Chinese text discussing grapes as medicine.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Early Grapes

There is a long tradition in Western and European art of rendering vines and grapes in a variety of media, mosaic, fresco, oils, and carving or moulding. Here is one of the earliest examples of fresco.

Its Roman and we don't know if it was an original work or a copy as a fresco of a wax encaustic work but consider this the pattern of cracking suggests the wet plaster and then the paint was applied in one session ... yes one session and yet the degree of detail ... shadows highlights stems handles ... a still life masterpiece.

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Wine Working Woman

For our next image in the grapes and wine series lets jump forwards to the Renaissance.

Francesco del Cossa painted this about 1460 and most probably was part of a series of panels originally in council chamber in Ferrara. It has also been attributed to Cosimo Tura, and is now in a Berlin Museum.

Its been called Polyhymnia or Allegory of Autumn but importantly its an excellent example of a young woman worker depicted with grace and strength pausing from her work tending vines.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Grape Pressing - Roman

While researching Maenads and Satyrs I keep finding images of Satyrs and Silenoi pressing grapes but not Humans in Greek Classical but no human workers until I added Roman as a search parameter.

Even then I got several images of cupids pressing grapes but finally I found this image.

Its part of a larger mosaic showing activities linked to various months of the year.

The ancients seemed to have used much shallower vats then modern winegrowers. 

I'll be sharing more images of this activity over the next few blogs showing how depictions of workers changed over the centuries.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Wine Pressing from the Tomb of Nakht

#wine #winemaking #winepress #egyptianpainting #tombofnakht

One of the oldest known paintings if not the oldest I've found so far of grape growing and harvesting.

also of interest as it shows ethnic diversity in ancient egypt with two blonde greeks or northerners or two older egyptians with  sun or aged bleached hair ? and the egyptians having coloring and hairstyles that are NOT all identical!

As I'm doing Dionysus over on my metousia blog I thought I might take a look at images of grapes and wine growing and making in other cultures.

Next time some roman imagery.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Digital Ink Inkscape and Inktober

Been thinking about #Inktober

I usually don't have time to do a daily drawing but for those of you who prefer digital ink here's a couple of  rough sketches / ideas for using #inkscape

After you select the pen tool set it to dip pen this was done by finger on a touch pad kinda rough but you get the idea ?

Add one of the ink texture filters for a wet paper effect ?

INK whether its digital felt tip or pen enjoy playing with it !

Saturday, 7 October 2017


This is a smaller lower resolution version of my newest #redbubble design

Copyright Julie Vaux 2017 

To see this and other designs visit

where you can buy this on stickers and clothing and gift items!

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Ornate Capitals Experiment

I have been experimenting with merging and editing two different font variants of a basic letter form to create a new ornate capital.

Needs more tweaking with nodes and paths but could be a useful shortcut for developing fonts ?

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

I have scarves !!!

#fashion #scarf #design #julievaux #redbubble

Just a reminder that many of my designs are also available printed on scarves and other items !

Copyright Julie Vaux 2017 

Sunday, 24 September 2017

The Origin of Art Deco

In case you thought it was just an urban legend ...

Here's the poster for the exposition that give this 1920-30s style of design its name 

Yes it really was called Arts Decoratifs but note the poster states it was also a show of industrial art and stresses Modern on the second last line of the text.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

A Reminder and a Logo

Do you think its time to me to redo or update this logo design yet? Do visit my sites!? Send feedback on which site you think the logo works best on ?

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

The Flapper

#Theflapper  #cover #life #artdeco #butterfly #illustration

Ever wonder about this image?

While searching for butterfly images I keep coming across copies of it and so decided to track down the original UNEDITED source.

Its a LIFE magazine cover!

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Another great SF book cover

# bookcover #SF #threecolorrule 

Another great example tho my photo taken with the mobiles not so good is this elegant cover for The Rise and Fall of D.OD.O. Just 3 colors black yellow white ! and a reference on the cover as to how  Schrodingers Cat leads to time travel and science battling magic! 

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

A Good Read and a Great Cover

#titanbooks #jameslovegrove #cthulhu #bookcoverdesign #sherlockholmes

I know this came out last year but my library's copy went walkabout and only recently was returned!

This book's cover is an excellent example of cover design for the following reasons:

1) Appropriate to the fusion of the two genres as this book combines skilfully the Holmes and Cthulhu mythos.

2) Typography An Art Noveau look for the font but note the modifications so that the curls turn from tendrils to tentacles!

3) The three color rule works ! The green contrasts with the white and black 

4) Its a wonderful balanced layout of the various elements that makes a clear statement  about the book's contents.

Finally its a great read as well thanks to James Lovegrove's knowledge of both genres! 

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Artists Statues and Ethics Some Questions to Consider

#historywars #confederatestatues #columbusstatues #statues #captaincook

MY LIST of the ETHICAL QUESTIONS we should ask ourselves about this

Artist Designer or Sculptor

Whether you think Statues of Colonial Founders or Confederate Generals or other Public Figures should stay in place or be torn down HANDS UP if you have EVER thought AAARGH thats an ugly statue they could have done better.

However The REAL issues should be

to replace or contrast existing monuments

OTHER issues should be

Can we respectfully rephrase and change existing inscriptions to show that

One person or culture's Hero is Another's Villian?

Should we be creating monuments at all?

Are we creating a focus for memory or a propaganda image?

If the propaganda image is of a legend whoever it is has some artistic merit  should it remain in place?

Then there's the issue of whether we are creating an IDOL OR A ICON for those of us who follow certain theologies and creeds?

Is it a greater sin to leave certain statues standing or is it a respectful tribute to create an image?

Whether its Captain Cook Governor Macquarie Christopher Columbus Lenin Mao Robert E. LEE  Sherman or Grant an Amerind Chieftain Cecil Rhodes an Oppressed Native or some Sports Star
how do we honor them with art?

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Three Suns

Three Suns created and edited with #inkscape  #demo

I started with a circle with stroke set for orange and then added filters

How to take this further? I suggest an orange object with irregular edges to suggest flames making it a bottom layer and then grouping or merging the two?

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Italo-Byzantine ChiRho

From the same church as the prior post an example of a #ChiRho #italobyzantine style #mosaic #lettering

I have not cropped this to emphasize the lettering because I want you to be been to see and study how the letters fit into and onto a band of ornament as part of a curved mosaic surface.

It also shows a good color balance in the composition and layout.

Think about how a similar color layout might work in print or on the web for a title or header or poster. I think you might have to strengthen the greens for modern mediumand maybe darken the blue or strengthen it?

You don't have to do a ChiRho ... you can experiment with other letters! Initials maybe?

Saturday, 19 August 2017

An Italo-Byzantine Mosaic

#italo-byzantine #mosaic #doves #holyspirit

I'm sharing this as an example of the following

Doves as symbols of Holy Spirit
Italo-Byzantine art
Interesting layouts
Hey its Sunday in my time zone!

Its from the San Clemente Basilica in Rome

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Rooster Art in the West

I've been posting a lot of rooster and bird related art over in my  Technozi blog by various Asian artists but Europe had its specialist bird painters too. Here's a fine 17th century example.

The composition is an interesting balance of horizontals and diagonals in the background with angles creating depth contrasting with the rounded curves and stronger colors of the chickens in the foreground.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Durers' Stork

#durer #drawing #stork

Durer's best known Animal painting is probably his depiction of a #european #hare but he also drew other animals and birds. He was a meticulous master of linework as well as color with skills that made him successful as a engraver and printmaker as well as a painter of portraits and religious works.

Monday, 7 August 2017

Pompadour by Boucher Some Comments

On top of everything else I nearly smashed my hand in a door but ... not my typing hand

okay double or triple glyphika this week if I have time to make up for the gaps in posting

so why a portrait of Madame Pompadour by Boucher ?

One) Pompadour was a patron of the arts who supported the creation of French porcelain amongst other things.

Two) This is a quite awesome portrait WHY?

A) great diagonal composition B) Exquisite color balance C) Hidden or not so hidden messages

The message is not in the medium (Oil Painting) but in the details.

Notice what it tells us about Madame Pompadour

She was a mistress of style and fashion who could make a pink and bluegreen floral dress with frills and truffles work and even look sexy. Think about that diagonal composition and the placement of the pink frills down the front.
Note how she is not only holding a book but the mirror BEHIND Her shows not an image of her admiring her own reflection but that the rest of her room  has more books in a cabinet and not a view of her bed and then theres the table next to her with the drawer open to show with a quill in an inkpot ready for use.

You can download this from multiple sources. Do study it carefully to learn more.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

aaargh sick

Sorry folks I've been sick off and on for the last week with the sort of minor ailments that tempt one to overdo things so one is sick one day and better the next but not fully recovered

stomach bug upsetting my blood sugar levels wattle pollen allergy leading to sinusitis sniffles mild flu or pollen reaction ... generic weird aches and twinges

I'm functioning on green tea and boringly sensible soups brown rice etc since anything much spicier sweeter or stronger makes me sick again

maybe by the weekend I've have the energy and inspiration to make a decent post

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

John's Eagle

10th century AD Egmond Gospels St Johns Eagle.

Features of interest and worth studying

Combining circles with squares  Use of split lines Color Composition