Tag Archives: Ahhh-Design
Hey everyone! It feels like forever since I last updated but it’s only been five days! Last week was one of those weeks where nothing was going right, at least when it came to web related issues. But, instead of fighting every web technicality that arose, I decided to take a short break and come back with a fresh viewpoint, and what do you know – it all worked out! Sometimes you just have to know when to step away to avoid becoming frustrated. So here are Monday’s Makers- a day late, but here nonetheless! (more…)
I am in the midst of changing up my website (stay tuned!) and I came across Amanda Hawkins of Ahhh-Design and Little Bird. I was immediately drawn to her work for its detail and whimsical approach. I kept looking at her site and that’s when I had an Ahhh! moment. Her blog was full of DIY planners! I was completely taken back and tried for some time to write about her site but I couldn’t come up with an angle for it because its content was just so rich and had a bit of everything. Her blog covers everything from crafts, music mixes, DIY Planners, and freebies, aka free downloads! I love her printable calendars and index cards; they are a must. Basically, I wish I was her neighbor so I could learn how to be an all around creative. She’s just that cool
Amanda Hawkins, 31
Is this a fulltime business for you?
I’m a full-time freelance web designer & developer under Little Bird LLC (http://www.littlebirdllc.com). Ahhh Design (http://www.ahhh-design.com) is a personal site where I post things I love, things I make and lots of DIY Planner Templates.
Why do you choose paper as your medium?
I’ve always been fascinated by the different textures you can pull out of a single piece of paper. Crinkle it up/flatten it out, scrape through it, rip it up, rub it on the ground, draw all over it and repeat.
What led you to this?
I took my first art class in 10th grade and received a BFA in 2002 with an emphasis in Graphic Design. In 2006 I started focusing on small collages and sort of stumbled into my own style finally – after years of jumping between mediums or not creating at all. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/ahawkins/sets/72157609307741550/)
A few years ago I was obsessed with D*I*Y Planner (http://www.diyplanner.com). I spent hours going through templates and putting together the perfect planner, which I never used. As a creative person it was all too structured – I needed room to move around, draw, doodle and scribble ideas and plans. So, I just made my own!
Do you ever feel “artist’s block”, and if so how do you overcome it?
I try to avoid it but yes, of course! I always have a place to draw ready to go so when I do feel inspiration I can get to work right away. If I’m staring at a blank page for more than 30 seconds I make myself start… even if it’s just a random mark with a pencil or the first scrap paper I see to glue on. Anything on a page is less intimidating than nothing. Music works wonders too.
How would you describe your style
My style is messy, child-like, haphazard, textured, layered, sometimes sad but always hopeful.
Who are some of your favorite artists and sites
This is just a few from a long, long list.
Mark Rothko – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Rothko
Hollis Brown Thornton-http://www.hollisbrownthornton.com/
Julia Pott – http://www.juliapott.com/
David Fullarton – http://www.davidfullarton.com/
Planner blogs and Inspiration
D*I*Y Planner – http://diyplanner.com/
Judy of the Woods – http://www.judyofthewoods.net/organised.html
Erinzam – http://www.erinzam.com/
David Seah – http://davidseah.com/productivity-tools/
What makes you unique?
Working many years in print design and now web design I have the technical abilities to turn my scribbles into websites and fun things like free planner downloads. I think that’s why I end up working with so many artists on their websites, I understand where they’re coming from ’cause that was me five years ago.
What is your favorite planner, binder, anything you use daily?
Honestly, the only thing I use consistently and on a daily-basis is my MacPro – the love of my life! Just don’t tell my husband.
Any small ideas you can include to help others create something small and from the heart to start out with?
I get lost in the process of creating art, the little details. The way the white conte hits the edge of a glued on scrap paper and makes a darker line. How the texture or pattern changes when you glue a piece of transparent tissue paper on top. Let your hand move without thinking about it… the way you’re feeling will guide it and your brain will get out of the way.
My biggest piece of advice is don’t ever worry about the finished product, no matter what you’re making. If you enjoy the process then it will be beautiful and it will be totally you.
Don’t you want to be her neighbor now too!
To see more of Amanda’s work visit: