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I’ve been working on a series of paintings for a show at Wild Joe’s in September, and I stopped to experiment with some of my under-painting in a series of anti-trump, feminist greeting cards.

It started with some basic ideas: (These are all available on Etsy):

Then I thought it would be cool to do a full 4-card set of notecards:

I added a needlepoint look to these, to add that revolutionary flair.

Then, one of my friends suggested that I instead use the art for a Mother’s Day card, hence the birth of the “Smash the Patriarchy and Happy Mother’s Day” card.


An upbeat greeting card…

I drew these birds a couple of years ago and they just resurfaced. I had been inspired by a “draw an alphabet” prompt from fellow illustrator Sharon Glick, and at the time, they just seemed too horribly, horribly sad to even show anyone! I was afraid people would think I was in a pretty dark place.

It actually happened kind of innocently. I was trying to think of words that start with A, and I guess abject was the first one that popped into my head. I mean, like, after aardvark. I just rolled with it from there, and produced a rapid, messy sketch, which I then hid away from the world as too weird and creepy to take credit for.

When I exhumed the S.A.D. birds from my drawing pile a few days ago, I was sort of charmed, in a wallowing way, by the sad, sad, sadness of them. I decided it was time to let them see the light of day.

After I made the greeting card, I made some hand-colored 8×10 SAD Birds prints, in case anybody might be weird enough to want them.


8×10″ print half-heartedly hand-colored in dismal tones

That’s when I discovered how much fun (and creatively non-threatening) it is to color crappy drawings of sad birds, so I made my drawings into a teeny little coloring book. On one hand, I feel kind of bad unleashing such a sad coloring book on the world, but it is actually really fun to color, so maybe there’s something therapeutic about it? I left lots of space on the pages so people can draw in their own circumstances. Maybe a happy surprise is right around the corner for these birds, who knows? (I mean, that didn’t happen on any of the pages I colored…but things might go differently for you.)


4.25×5.5″ mini SAD Birds coloring book

But the mini coloring book is really best for colored pencils, so next I got busy and created a crayon-ready 8.5×5.5″ version. The line-work blends with crayons so your crayon lines won’t look “foreign to the overall work.” (Try to read that while picturing me looking deeply serious.)


Crayon-Ready 5.5×8.5″ version

And I decided to make a print-it-yourself instant download version in 8.5×11″ format, too. Whew!


8.5×11 instant download (PDF) version

And poof! My whole day was shot! (Two days, really, who am I kidding.) As in many cases, I figured, well, if nobody buys them, they’ll make great gifts for my weird family.

In any case, I know from experience that the sun does eventually get higher in the sky, and things grow again, and the days won’t always be so bleak and short. So until then, I’m eating plenty of cookies and coloring sad birds.

(If you feel compelled to purchase any of these sad items, click on the picture or visit my Etsy shop, Kitschatorium.)



“Babies are born with all of the unnecessary apostrophes that they will ever need.” –Goodman

Whew! I set to work over Labor Day Weekend and posted 20 new cards featuring my illustrations at my Goodwerks Etsy Shop.*

(*This is the shop where I put the more commercial, cutesy and cartoony stuff. The other one, Kistchatorium, has more of my original art)

I wonder if there’s a niche market out there for the kinds of greeting cards I seem to produce. Namely:
Angst Sympathy,
Seasonal Affective Disorder Sympathy,
Dental Sympathy,
Dysfunctional Family Birthday,
Cat this, Cat that, Cat the Other Thing,
Despair Sympathy,
Existentially Troubled Sympathy,
Weird Friendship,
Spinster Birthday,
Grumpy Birthday,
Intelligent Parents Baby,
…and many more!

Click on the image if you’d like to browse the cards.

C’mon, you must have at least one weird friend!


cute sad corgi illustration by Marla Goodman
Uh, yeah. It’s all fetching fun and games and then he gets this perplexed expression, like… “something’s gone terribly awry here…”  Meanwhile, I’m standing about 30 feet away, shouting and doing hand semaphore for “No! No! Abandon mission! Don’t bring it back!” But… (over-sharing alert…) true to the indomitable corgi spirit, I have actually seen him pick it up, bowl-style, and return it anyway, barely spilling a drop! Auuuuughhh!

cute sad corgi illustration by Marla Goodman

Anyway, I finally got around to putting this unforgettable image on greeting cards and an 8×10 print at my Goodwerks Etsy shop. Seems like it would be ideal bathroom decor, or “cheer-up we all make mistakes” card, so let’s hope I sell a few. Walter suffered for this art.

I made this printable Thanksgiving banner and card a while back and it’s really pretty cute.


we-like-you-group2So, you’re having a party.

So am I! Or at least I was thinking of having a party someday. And I wanted to make good on my promise to use that “print your own linoleum block Christmas Cards” kit I bought at a church rummage sale last summer. So, linoleum block printed party invites.

kinda blah

kinda blah

I’d been thinking that a “We Like You” party would be cool…I’d invite all those people I like that I never actually get to see (possibly because they don’t like me, but that’s only conjecture).

I didn’t want to agonize over my block print, so I sat down, penciled some letters onto the block and started carving. (I remembered to make them backwards!) I didn’t worry about whether or not they would look good. After all, if you get an invite in the mail that says “We Like You” you’d have to be kind of a jerk to decline due to inexpert lettering. (In this way, I plan to weed the mean people from my We Like You list…)

wouldn't you come to this party?

wouldn’t you come to this party?

Things began innocently enough (I seem to say that a lot, after doing something that might have turned out differently had it begun with any type of plan). The kit included water based ink, so I inked up a brayer and rolled black ink onto the block I had carved. The first print looked okay, but kind of boring.

Then I decided to try printing on an old magazine page to add a bit of background texture. (How Martha Stewart of me, right?) That looked pretty good. Before long, I started pulling prints on magazine photos, noticing that they were looking a little creepy, but having too much fun to stop.

Then David walked in and I said, “Hey! Wanna see the awesomeness of this print I’m making?” After he respectfully appreciated the magic of lino printing, I asked him if he had any suggestions or ideas. “Do you have any other colors?” he asked. Yes, the kit also had red and green.

welikeyou08Somehow, the red gave things a sort of “Carrie” flavor that was even creepier than the black, and I began to wonder if anybody I actually do like would come to my party, having received this particular invitation.

So… if anybody out there has some really robust friends who wouldn’t think twice about coming to a party that may or may not be hosted by a serial killer, let me know. I have just the thing.

Sure, a lot of people—when they make something horrifying by juxtaposing child photos from a 1947 magazine against a seemingly innocent phrase printed in blood red ink—would call it art. But I know really creepy party invites when I see them.

Vintage fabric illustrations by Marla Goodman

my first card series

This weekend I’m going to test out some of my fabric illustrations at Bozeman’s Saturday Farmer’s Market. My friend, Carmel (who makes awesome jewelry!) said she’d share her booth with me if I’d like to do some fund raising for my Walk to Defeat ALS effort.

Hopefully I’ll get some feedback on which cards (if any) people like: My own tastes tend to be pretty weird!

I’m gradually putting these up on my Etsy store. I would love to hear some topic suggestions, if you have any ideas for me!

I’ve been toying with the idea of some Valentine cards based on photos from the figurine collection in my ever-evolving kitschatorium. I wonder if anybody else shares my weird figurine and shitty photography Valentine aesthetic…

These photos seemed a little too populated to be valentines, so they became party invites…

bird drawing with vintage fabric fills

Okay, I actually did one very small creative-ish thing over the holidays, which involved messing around with my passel o’ vintage fabric scraps and my Cintiq.

I used this cutesy birdie art on some note cards and bookmarks. It was fun playing around with the colors using the selective color adjustment in Photoshop.

If you like this art, it’s available on some products on Etsy and at my Cafepress store.

Look how cute the merch turned out!

I’ve also created a tutorial on how to do vintage fabric illustrations yourself, using Photoshop.


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Why, when it’s 8 degrees outside, am I drawing wiener dogs, romping among the flowers? This is another vintage fabric illustration experiment, using my cintiq. The collars are a little clunky looking, but not when I put GLITTER on them in the printed version! Glitter makes everything real good.

A Grand Adventure Vintage Fabric Illustration by Marla Goodman

A Grand Adventure - Vintage Fabric Illustration

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