May’s Feed Your Soul: the free art project Monday downloads: week 1

Monday’s Feed Your Soul downloads are up and I’m loving both of them! Jen Oaks’ contribution is especially timely for me, since I’ve been working on my own garden….hope to have a wonderful bounty like the one she depicts. 😉

Make sure to join the Feed Your Soul Flickr Group and share how you use the free downloads. You could win a prize pack from Chronicle Books in the Feed Your Soul and Boycott the Recession Chronicle Books contest.

Also, congrats to Diane and Clara. They both won an original drawing by artist Shawna Handke in last week’s giveaway.



About Jen Oaks – Jen Oaks just moved from San Francisco to superflowery Berkeley, where there are plenty of birds and squirrels for her cats to stare at. She uses ink, gouache, and her Wacom tablet to illustrate, and is really excited about silkscreen lately. Jen will graduate in December with her MFA in Illustration! You can find her work at her site, her etsy shop, and her flickr.

1. How do you describe your work?

Linear, colorful, and feminine. I love patterns, florals, ladies, fancy clothing, detail, and a little awkwardness.

2. What are your inspirations in your art and life?

Life in the Bay Area is constant inspiration. The weather, plant life, people, and neighborhoods are so diverse and amazing. I also love vintage textiles, poster art, street art, thrift stores, the farmers’ market, and my classmates’ incredible artwork.

3. What do you do to help feed your soul?

Being in grad school makes me forget about this! But I try to make time to do revitalizing things like take walks with friends, visit the ocean, make little things for people, and cook and eat really good food. I think if I weren’t an artist, I’d be perfectly happy feeding people all the time.

Download Jen Oaks’ Feed Your Soul contribution HERE!


About Lauren Minco – Lauren graduated from the Illustration Department at The Rhode Island School of Design in 2006. Now she balances teaching, freelance illustration, and showing her work in galleries while pursuing her own entrepreneur endeavors. She currently lives in Providence, Rhode Island. Lauren is faculty with RISD Continuing Education and Montserrat College of Art’s Illustration Department. See her work on her website, in her Etsy Shop and on her blog.

1. How do you describe your work?

Awkwardly whimsical or whimsically awkward. I would say most work is created spontaneously, and sometimes imagery comes out that I’m not 100% sure what it means. I think my art charms people on different levels—viewers see it as quirky, sweet, slightly disturbing, but fun. 

2. What are your inspirations in your art and life?

I combine a lot of elements from comics, pop culture, folk art, and street art with my own visual vocabulary. There are far too many artists to name that inspire me, and honestly I try not to look at them TOO much (otherwise I may risk putting too much of them into my work!). I am inspired by my sketchbooks full of random raw material and the support I get from my family. Seriously, there are many artists out there who don’t have that support and I am thankful every day I have people ready to back me up.

3. What do you do to help feed your soul?

I teach art and Illustration. I love teaching. Inspiring and nurturing students is wonderful, especially my Pre-College kids who are so close to deciding where life after high school will lead them. Many are young artists who have a lot of potential, and when they come to me I like to show them that the art world out there is bigger than they thought. Once they leave they are practically bursting with ideas and creativity!

Download Lauren Minco’s Feed Your Soul contribution HERE!