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Stickers: A Family Affair

Since the summer, I've been sporadically ordering stickers to sell and/or insert into large painting or collage orders. For now, I've sampled two of the three Cereal Freaks I created, Yetimelon and Pumpkin Spice Jacks. (Converting the illustrations and package designs to headshot stickers has rekindled my enthusiasm for the project, so new Cereal Freaks are on the horizon.)


I also dug through my archives to see what else might make for a cool sticker, and pulled The Dragon Burger, just a silly thing I made years ago as a way to familiarize myself a little more with Adobe Illustrator.


When this latest batch came in the mail, my daughter's interest piqued. She already has a few of "Dad's weirdos" on her piano, so I'm glad I still hold some street cred with her. The nonstop questions about how I was able to make stickers led to a classic "show, don't tell" moment, and I helped her make her own.

How we did it

This girl is always doodling and crafting, so it wasn't hard to coax an idea out of her. With Valentine's Day around the corner, she quickly sketched out a few ideas onto a piece of paper.

I photographed the sketch – I don't have a home scanner – uploaded it to the computer, and edited as little as possible (contrast adjustments in Photoshop, image tracing in Illustrator) to get this to a stage where my daughter could color in the heart herself. I didn't want to polish the work too much to keep the autonomy and integrity of her lines. If she sees something she doesn't like when the holographic stickers hit the mailbox next week, I'll coach her on a solution. But kids need to experiment without interference from adults who "know better." This isn't the 5th grade science fair.

Not gonna lie, I think I'm as excited for these as she is.


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