MerryDay playground journal cover Global Talent Search submission

playground journal cover

Here is my journal cover designed for Lilla Rogers studio's Global Talent Search.  I don't usually participate in any design contest that requires a fee to enter. However, as a student of Make Art That Sells class, I was automatically eligible to join in the contest. I didn't expect myself to win from the beginning. This doesn't mean that  I gave up right from the start or I didn't think I was good enough. It's just that, after 5 weeks with Lilla's class reviews, I kind of had a glimpse of what she liked and what she felt so-so and I didn't think my work fell in the first.

Then, why did I still enter? This is because I viewed it as an extra assignment to accomplish (Lilla actually said this to prevent us from getting too tensed with the competition). It's challenging to work on a piece that has a real client, in this case Lilla herself and Paperchase. It would be great if I could get to the next round and if I couldn't, I still had this good piece for my portfolio :)

In this first round, we were assigned to work on a journal cover in the theme of 'playground'.  I started it by sketching things that related to the theme, swing tire, jungle gym, sand box, horse on spring etc. I'd like to add my merry characters in it too and then a whimsical idea of combining the playground theme with tea time bakery just popped in my head. Why tea time bakery?, I'm not sure, maybe because I associated fun in playground with kids and kids like dessert and sweet candies. I always like combining unrelated things together and transform it into new aspect. Just as I did with the tea cup and kettle as the see-saw in playground :)

Then, I tried to think more of bakery/playground theme. So came the candies swing, the strawberry Pocky jungle gym, the donut swing and berries tart sandbox. I really enjoyed working on each elements. I have to admit though that although I said I didn't care if I would win or not, I think when you work very hard, you just can't help hoping. However, at the back of my mind, I still thought that this would not be what Lilla would fancy.

Lilla always emphasized that good artwork had to read well in small size, meaning if you reduce the work into stamp size, the work should still be catching and attractive. This means you need to have strong contrast, great characters and compositions and stunning colors. I tried doing that but just as I said in the previous post, people really see things differently. I thought my journal popped up when reduced small but maybe it's not in other people's view? I don't know. It's really a matter of point of view.

Anyway, I didn't get through to the next round and I'm ok with it. This piece may not be the best ( I think there's still something that can be improved) but it is good enough and the most important thing is that I really enjoyed doing it and really happy to receive good feedbacks when I shared it in the class group. Besides, I already have a ton of ideas to make stationery items based on this design for my MerryDay shop. It's not a waste of time at all :)

So, this post is officially the end of Make Art That Sells class part A. I'm moving on to another e-course posts. This one is more relaxing and more play. The class is Painted Pages workshop.

You think I'm crazy girl addicted to taking e-courses? Yes, I think I am :) I have just realized recently that while I am learning new things from the classes, I'm also exploring my inner self spiritually too. I'm not sure if I will be able to express myself properly but I think it's an interesting and exciting topic to blog about. Let's see what I will have for the next posts.

Thanks for joining in my creative journey. It will never end and I hope you enjoy it along the way :)

Have a merry day :D


  1. I love your progress for this! I really adore the design too! :) You should give yourself a piece of cake for your hard work!

    1. Thanks! I have to say I really wanted to have a piece of pretty berry tart cake while I was drawing it! :D

  2. oooh, this e-course looks fun! too bad it's already sold out

    and I like your cover! and I think you did an AMAZING job on ALL the designs you had to come up with so like OhHay said.... you definitely need o treat yourself with at least one piece of cake ;)

    1. Thank you Nini :D I really can't wait to see how far I can go in Part B class :)

  3. This journal cover does look really sweet and it could easily fit in the Lilla-Rogers illustrators gallery in my opinion. I like your positive approach in everything and looking forward to you writing about diving into the more spiritual side of things :-)


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