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7 Ways to Turn Your Art Into Holiday Gifts

Elisha-Rio Apilado

Elisha-Rio Apilado is a Chicago based graphic designer/illustrator and studio artist whose paintings and drawings have been featured in various exhibitions. Elisha studied studio art in Dallas, TX and moved back to Chicago where she obtained a B.F.A. in Visual Communications at the IL Institute of Art. She is currently diving into the career world of design while taking on freelance gigs and volunteer work.

Her portfolio and blog of random art findings can be found at erioapilado.com. Join her Facebook page or follow her on twitter where her daily art adventures are posted.


Enjoy going to Hallmark and finding the perfect Christmas card? Instead, why not design it yourself for a less expensive and more personal alternative?

Have any friends involved in bands that do mini performances at local venues? Gift them an awesome event flyer design to promote their concert.

Designing for yourself and for others gives you the creative freedom you long for at work, while also giving you the platform to show your stuff as a designer. And, the lack of project specs makes what you design that much more personal (not to mention stress free). Break away from that prison of clients and school project deadlines and let your creative juices flow! Believe me, it’s relieving! Making your own art will keep you sane and your true artist visible.

Here are just a few ideas on how to combine your design skills with your hobbies in order to gift your art:

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1. “I still believe in print design!”

From birthday cards to Christmas cards and invitations, as a graphic designer you’re probably a strong believer in print design.

You’ve found yourself feeling the different types of paper at Hallmark and you spend hours (or days…) at the store walking up and down the aisles in search of the perfect card. Why not save yourself the hassle and put your precious time towards designing your own cards? It adds a personal touch and the recipient will greatly appreciate your art. It’s original, it’s thoughtful, it’s cheap, and most importantly, it’s all you.

Doing projects like this not only allows for total creative freedom, it also enables you to learn about the printing and letterpress process. Volunteer your card illustrating skills to friends and family members having a special event. Who knows? Maybe your card-making hobby will flourish into a part-time, or full-time, career.

Next: The Art of Music →


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