Delighted! Selected for American Illustration 30

Selected: American Illustration 30, Q. CassettiThis is a bigger deal than I had thought. This is what American Illustration 30 says about the competition:

Congratulations! Your work has been Selected to appear in the American Illustration 30 annual. On behalf of the entire jury, we thank you for your submission and support of American Illustration.
This year’s distinguished jury included Nicholas Blechman, The New York Times Book Review; Rachael Cole, Schwartz & Wade Books; Michael Ian Kaye, Mother New York; Todd Oldham, Todd Oldham Studio; D.W. Pine III, TIME; David Saylor, Scholastic Inc. and Dean Sebring, Worth.
From more than 7,000 pictures entered by over 1,100 illustrators, magazines, agencies, publishers and schools, the jury selected, by a majority vote or better, only 316 images to appear in the book and represent the best pictures from 2010. AI30 will be printed in full color and distributed worldwide in hardcover immediately after The Party, November 10, 2011 - our annual book launch event that brings the creative community together to celebrate the winners.

Delighted to say the least! and love the selection. You just never know!

Neck Cat

After Ganga Devi, Q. Cassetti, 2011, sharpies, pitt pen and moleskineBoys are doing a round trip to NYC today to get a family member to a medical specialist for an annual. Just called, and things are good. Thank goodness. They have blue skies and melting snow versus rain and sleet and snow. Shady is laid out in sunshine on the green floor. Mr. White, my new patient, is receptive to his treatment (eyedrops) and cookies that go with his good behavior. The vet tech said that they identify cats just their color and markings. Mr. White fits into a category as a “neck cat”. Neck cats climb up you, and will sit on your shoulders and around your neck like a fashion accessory. And believe it or not, Mr. White was doing that yesterday for comfort. Made wearing a thick wool jacket (like I am) a wonderful foil for the claws—creating a positive velcro environment for the big guy. Now, like a baby, he climbs up and sits on my shoulder after he gets his eyedrops looking for a little sympathy. He is a squinty pirate, and I guess I am the new pirate ship for his captaincy. I am not a big fan of cats, but Mr. White is alright. We have a week of eyedrops and then another trip to the vet for a confirmation.

I have been at the office since a quarter to 7 a.m. Getting a bunch of things done. Uploaded a brochure and two big sized business cards to Bargain Basement Printing with the cards being (500 pcs. for $14) and the brochure equally inexpensive. So, in a week or so, we will be able to kvell or cry about the quality/price. I hope I am going to be delighted. There isn’t much flexibility around this printer (thus the price), and the file requirements are touchy, but I made it work after a while, and am heartened.

A person I met at The Museum Institute at Sagamore contacted me to see if we could repurpose my valentine for a wedding “Save the date” card. I am flattered, and we have Joe Sepi at Pioneer rolling on the reconfigured redo. What a nice idea!

Next stop, cheap stickers!

Got a poster done for the HS play (on the edge time), got some memos done, paperwork filled out and done, and started some trial-ing the specs….and surfacing more stuff. That hurts. But, if we do not check the work, we will be working and justifying and trying to figure out the specs after the fact. It hurts to have to bounce the stuff back…but better now than later. We still have time to make it work.

Need to go.


vernal snowy day

Inspired by Ganga Devi, Q. Cassetti, 2011, sharpies and moleskine40 degrees and melting. Mild. Feels like Spring. The birds think its coming. Shady doesnt care as the top surface of the snow is icy and hard…her favorite for the wiggle dance she does in the snow spa jiggling and twitching, licking the snow and snapping up little crunchy cold bits. There will be ice chopping after lunch today to get the big chunks under the eaves broken up to melt (with a little salt to help).

Baked up a mess of granola last night. The sight of an empty granola cannister is enough to bring me to tears as this is the “go to” for the boys for late night, after school etc. No granola is another sign of my crummy mother and wifedom. We are back in business today, thank goodness. We whip through oatmeal like nobody’s business. I am always surprised by the sheer volume of this stuff and how it goes.

Things are setting down to ramp up at work…with new learning and quizzing about image bank services our client has, and how to tag, set up folders and the like. We are going to run at this…the kind of project management which is one step at a time. I can still breathe, but it feels like we could have some “moments” between now and the end of March.

Had a nice chat with two of the NYFood partners, Dan and Dean. They are so fabulous. I love this alternative, localvore, meet the farmer life….it really connects so much for me. I am always inspired by their concerns, interests, and work. To hear them talk about the farms, the earth, their families, their animals—it is a poem of love and of live. Each one has a different poem, but the tone and messages are always the same. It is a rich thing.

Great news. Did I mention that Charles Hively is putting me in his next 3x3 with an article, pictures, and of course illustrations. Ursula Roma wrote an amazing piece with Jason Koski doing the photography. I am filling in details with the photos…and am finalizing now. Charles asked if I would do the cover! So, wow. Am a bit stunned by that….now the question is what! I got a sneak peek of the Computer Arts article (UK magazine) on folk art and several illustrators who work in this mode. Tremendous!

Has anyone out there used TAXI? Looks good. However, the recent new folks I am working with came from a  search of the illustrator /designer, Alexander Girard.  Remember my phase last summer with Christmas angels, doves and the like? That was the work that the wonderful googlebot found, ranked and hooked me up with this good design firm in NYC.

The other is just a recommend. So, what help are all these random portfolio sites? How many do I need to have, to update etc? Behance has been great for waving the flag to say to the world, hey, I am here….but do I need more than the Directory of Illustration, Behance, my own sites, Society of Illustrators LA? Any ideas, insights?

Five out of six entries that got into Illustration West 49, Society of Illustrators, Los Angeles, by Q. CassettiMonkey, Q. Cassetti, 2010I was cruising Facebook to find out all sorts of people found out about Society of Illustrators, Los Angeles and what they got into their Illustration West 49 Show. I was combing my email looking for my note and kind of threw my hands up and figured I didn’t get in. But, I tried again late yesterday afternoon, to find out, yes, I did get it….and yes, I got quite a few pieces in! So, here is a posting of those images that got in. Now is the question of money and time…and whether it is worth spending a ton of money to get work framed and out to LA for a week’s show in Gallery Nucleus. Will need to weigh my options.

More talk later today. 

IF: Winter [Baking]

Gingerbread Wreath, Q. Cassetti, 2010, sharpies, from the Second Advent Calendar project A Merry Christmas to all. May your holidays be filled with family, friends, pets and of course, gingerbread! For the complete (to date) Advent Calendar for this year, please go here>>

Heavenly Joy

Double Sirin from Lubok, Q. Cassetti, pen and ink, digitalFrom Wikipedia on Sirin:   Sirin is a mythological creature of Russian legends, with the head and chest of a beautiful woman and the body of a bird (usually an owl). According to myth, the Sirins lived “in Indian lands” near Eden or around theEuphrates River[1][2].

These half-women half-birds are directly based on the Greek myths and later folklore about sirens[3][2][4].They were usually portrayed wearing a crown or with a nimbus[5]. Sirins sang beautiful songs to the saints, foretelling future joys. For mortals, however, the birds were dangerous. Men who heard them would forget everything on earth, follow them, and ultimately die. People would attempt to save themselves from Sirins by shooting cannons, ringing bells and making other loud noises to scare the bird off[3]. Later (17-18th century), the image of Sirins changed and they started to symbolize world harmony (as they live near paradise). People in those times believed only really happy people could hear a Sirin, while only very few could see one because she is as fast and difficult to catch as human happiness. She symbolizes eternal joy and heavenly happiness [6].

The legend of Sirin might have been introduced to Kievan Rus by Persian merchants in the 8th-9th century. In the cities of Chersonesos and Kiev they are often found on pottery, golden pendants, even on the borders ofGospel books of tenth-twelfth centuries[5]Pomors often depicted Sirins on the illustrations in the Book of Genesis as birds sitting in paradise trees[1].

Sometimes Sirins are seen as a metaphor for God’s word going into the soul of a man. Sometimes they are seen as a metaphor of heretics tempting the weak. Sometimes Sirins were considered equivalent to the Polish Wila. In Russian folklore, Sirin was mixed with the revered religious writer Saint Ephrem the Syrian. Thus, peasant lyrists such as Nikolay Klyuev often used Sirins as a synonym for poet[1].


Eternal jou and heavenly happiness. Imagine. Love this idea. The wikipedia page shows fine examples of Russian Sirin(s) with fethers and crowns, perched on the ground or on heavenly bushes/trees.

I am so pleased that the work got into the Society of Illustrators Illustration 53. It’s funny, but I had a hunch with the nutcrackers as American Illustration (another tough show to get into) took a Krampus…to my delight and pleasure. It is so good to have this personal stuff which seems obsessive and strange—but happily infectious for me, pleased enough of the judges to get in.  Anelle mentioned that there was a field of over 4,000. entries…so to get in is no mean feat particularly given the talent that is out there.

I think the nutcrackers may be a saleable card for next holidays along with the lab card. I think this stuff can/could sell. Etsy keeps selling something every day or so. It will be interesting to see what pops up over the course of the season. I sent a valentine to Pioneer with a nice quote which we are going to foil stamp and put in a Kraft paper square envelope. I am going to run extras to sell online as well. They are pretty and yet pretty odd (not the typical heart and flowers)…more tattoo-ey.

Am up against it with a few reports for Cornell along with a calendar coming our way from the Museum of Glass. Speaking of the Museum, my graphics for East Meets West (a show opening today) look wonderful. The whole idea of creating a stripe makes a pretty bulletproof way to look at show graphics. Your thoughts? It was an interesting design problem as the show works around the idea of eastern style vessels/ decoration imitated by western glassmakers for a western audience was the hook. So, I did something with the east/west type orientation, using my favorite (ligatures) and when possible, an eastern and western man painting from the same vessel…. I will post after this for your review.

Alex has a synth these days and is wildly plugged in making music. He is adoring this European stuff very “fashion show”(what R and I call it) with a dance beat and good percussion. Its nice he is on fire about this. It should be interesting to see what comes out of this thing.

More later.

Just in: Society of Illustrators NY (Illustration 53)

Nutcrackers, from Advent Calendar, Q. Cassetti, Dec. 2009, pen and inkMonkey, Q. Cassetti, Anelle Miller, Director of the Society of Illustrators, NY just called to tell me that these pieces were accepted into Illustration 53. I am delighted as there is the classic Q. illustration (vector) along with another image from my advent calendar series from last December….(a handdrawn special!). I am so honored, delighted and blessed.