Nov 29, 2015

sketching favorites and December sketching list

I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving break. I've been eating all the leftover stuffing & pie and have been packaging orders like a crazy person so THANK YOU to everyone that purchased & supported my shop this year. You continue to bless me more than you can ever know.

The shop is closed for the rest of the year but you can now find some of my prints over at Maker + Ink.

pleasant words by lesley zellers

It's a new site that offers a variety of prints from artists all across the country and I'm honored to be included. Here's a snippet from the about page:
At Maker + Ink, our passion is creating art that declares God's truth and looks great in our homes.

We are excited to offer a curated collection of modern, stylish, faith-based art prints created by a small group of talented designers from across the country.

Instead of clicking from website to website in search of the perfect scripture print, you'll find a carefully selected assortment of designs all in one place."

AND, it's about to be December! (where did the year go!?) Do you know what that means? A new month for the sketch-a-day challenge I started back in October! For the month of December my friend, Lindsay, owner/painter/letterer/artist behind pen + paint will be leading hosting the challenge! You can see the daily prompts on her blog. I am so excited to draw with her and I hope you join in.

Since we're talking about sketching, I frequently get asked what my favorite tools are for the job so I'm sharing some of my most used basic supplies.

Click on any image for source.

For drawing: pencils, pens and markers. 

Basic #2 pencil is pretty much all I ever use. My pen collection, on the other hand, is quite extensive but these Faber-Castell Pitt and Pilot G-Tec-C are my current favorites. The Pitt are waterproof and come in different sizes and the G-Tec makes a super fine line.

For painting: watercolors and watercolor paper. 

I've used Prang in the past but I recently invested in this travel set of watercolors and am really pleased with them. There isn't black in the set so I just use my calligraphy ink to darken when needed. And watercolor paper. They key here is the weight. Make sure you get 140lb so the paper won't ripple.


Paper: sketchbook & notebooks.

For a sketchbook, I like 5.5x8.5 hardbound with band to keep it closed and I like the smaller size so I can fit it in my bag. And for notebooks, I prefer dot grid books like this northbooks set I found on amazon.


That's it for my favorite basic supplies. For a more detailed list of all my favorite design-related things, go to my design faqs page.

Now, grab a pencil and some paper and get sketching with us!

Nov 24, 2015

new cards, free download, weekend sales info & more

There are so many things I want to tell you about so let's just get started.

First, I launched my little card line yesterday after much encouraging by my friends on instagram and was completely blown away by the support and all the orders. So I just wanted to pop in to say thank you!

pun cards set by lesley zellers

Several designs sold out pretty fast and there are just a few left of others. I guess you people really do appreciate a good pun!

For those that don't follow me on instagram, @lesleyzellers. I wanted to tell you how this funny little line came to be.

It all started with a pretty bad watercolor painting attempt that I sent to my friend for feedback. I was trying something new and just wasn't feeling it. She gave me great feedback and basically told me to try again.

Then I posted this on instagram:
veggies are rad by lesley zelelrs

with the caption:

Veggies are rad. Day 3 of #sketchadaywithhomeagain (a day late): radish.
Here's a little backstory: I sent a fellow design friend a watercolor I attempted. She told me (in the nicest way possible) that it looked like a beginner's work. I sent all the 😂💁🏼 emojis because that's exact what I am. I've never taken a formal painting class but have started playing around with it more. This same friend got me started on hand lettering after referring me to a @skillshare class. So I joked & asked if there was a watercolor class on skillshare. Turns out there is. So instead of putting the brushes away & admitting defeat - I took a class & am challenging myself to doing November prompts in watercolors. 😁🙀. Practice makes better, right?  
SO. All that to say. Honest friends that challenge & sharpen you are hard to find. Hold on to them. And if someone tells you you can't paint - by golly, take some classes, practice & punch those paints in the face. And lastly - that thing that you don't think you can do - go do it. Today. Mini blog is over. Carry on with your Wednesday. #sketchadaywithlrz

Sorry, apparently emojis don't work here.

So I decided to challenge myself to get better at watercolors. The next sketch-a-day prompt for the month, shared by @homeagaincreative, was dog. How in the world do you paint a dog? I didn't know but I do love a good hot dog and that fit, so a little hot dog character was born.

pun cards by lesley zellers

Then came encouraging. More prompts begging to be characters. And a whole set of cards were born.

pun cards by lesley zellers

And now they are in my shop. Crazy, right?! All because I tried something new. And while I'm not the best watercolorer after nearly a month of painting, I think I've learned some things and improved slightly - even if the month took a new direction in the form of challenging myself to come up with funny characters for each prompt!

So I stand by what I said on that post: ...that thing that you don't think you can do - go do it. Today.

You never know what will happen in a month!

Second, that free download!

As a small thank you for putting up with my humor and supporting my cards, I'm giving you guys a free set of Thanksgiving tags to download so you can print, cut and use as you wish!


There are five designs ready to use for little notes, place cards or thank yous. Download them here.

Next up, Black Friday and Small Business Saturday Sales!!!

Every year I love doing so pretty great sales in my shop and wanted to share some codes for you to use in the next few of days. And a reminder, my shop will close for the year after Saturday.

These codes will work both Friday and Saturday:
  • Spend $20 - get 15% off with code shopsmall15
  • Spend $50 - get 25% off with code shopsmall25
  • Spend $100 or more - get 35% off with code shopsmall35
And there may be a flash sale so stay tuned! It will be announced on instagram, @lesleyzellers.

One last thing!

The sketch-a-day challenge I started in October has a new host for December! I'm so excited to announce the the super talented, Lindsay, of  pen and paint, will be leading us for another month of drawing together!!! Follow her on instagram @pen_and_paint, for the prompts for the month. And thanks again to @homeagaincreative for leading us in November.

That's it! Now have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!