Lucy Davis Creatives - Who are we? Who am I? Yes, that's right - it's just me here creating art for you! I have been creating art for my entire life, so my mom says.
Let's go WAY back, shall we! I was born in a tiny town in England - so if you see Mini Cooper car or English phone booth in my art - there is a reason for it. When I was a wee tyke, my family moved to New Jersey in the good ole U.S.A. My entire childhood of Barbies and bike riding took place there - and ART, so much art. We had two boys that my mother babysat every day after school - they became my little art students. Pets- enter stage right - they appear in every moment of my life from here on: Cats. Horses. Chinchillas, Bunnies. Guinea pigs. Dogs. It was full speed ahead from there to middle school, where my focus changed from making my own cartoons, like Garfield, to ceramics. I had a fabulous teacher who basically lead me and gave me the freedom to roam through her classroom. I predominantly hand built with clay, some of which were animal figurines which teacher's bought from me. Is this bragging? I say NAH - rather it's the beginning of my success. My 10th grade year brought a great deal of change, with a move to Massachusetts and a high school without clay - oh the horror. My darling teacher there, set up daily still life scenes with skulls, vases and the American flag. So I drew. I drew anything and everything. I shaded and contoured. I met friends with the same insane passion for art that I had. We began to plan for careers. College bound. I had options, so many art schools.
I chose the University of Hartford in CT. In 1989, I packed up my little, silver Peugot car and hit the highway. Big Plans, Big Goals. One plump chinchilla. I met talented classmates on our first day and we clung to each other for our 4 years. Journals. Late night assignments. Critiques. Cheese fries. ( I can't really tell you more here but let's have coffee!) We learned printmaking, computers - if you can call them that- how to paint and figure drawing (I can tell you about Bill later!) . Graduation 1993 .. well that went too quickly...
From there - I pursued being "found" by the Children's book publishing world. Still a task I pursue, a dream, a goal... jumping way forward to 2006 - Print ON demand! I was able to write, illustrate, print & self-publish my own books. SUCCESS. Something else out of my head, until the next book appears. Breathe..
Let's go back to 1998.. marriage, yadda, yadda, & one darling baby boy was born, he was there when I started ChocolArts.com ( my creative truffle making business, yes, I still have the recipes)... One husky & one Samoyed occupied the floor in my studio, in case you were wondering. Gazebo Arts: art & craft supply shop in Massachusetts was created in our tiny town. A fun adventure to have when my sweet baby girl was making her appearance. It may have lasted. I'm not really sure on that one... but we were due for the big change: moving to Montana. (again.. coffee, you, me- let's talk)
So in 2005... 2 cars, 4 adults, 2 kids, a cocker spaniel, a husky and some kitties - we were off..... we're still here. It's been 15 years.. I'm staying! Since the move - I have raised my 2 brilliant kids, who are 17 and 22 now. I worked with fabulous teachers and special needs kids at my youngsters elementary school for seven years. I left Warren School to open my shop, Canvas Paint N Party, for adults to come & paint n sip with friends! At the shop, I also had the "zoo" where kids could meet 2 sugar glider, a chinchilla, 2 guinea pigs & 2 pygmy hedgehogs. Animals are always part of daily life. I even tested the waters with PaintNPartyGO subscription art boxes - a fabulous idea I tried while this is was incredibly popular with online shopping!
I closed my shop in December 2019 - to pursue my illustrations you are seeing here. Animals. Hand drawn and colored in Faber Castell pencil. My beloved colored pencil. Montana wildlife. Critters in cars. Animals on tractors. Goats on vintage campers. Pet Portraits. I made one, then two, then the ETSY orders began rolling in for these unique portraits of friend's dogs. Birthday presents, a gift for mom and especially, sad as it is, memorial images of beloved pets. What an honor to depict these doggies with their favorite shoe, or the client's favorite mountain view. So I sit, filling in the "short" version of my under 50 years, letting you know - it's just me, here with my pencil at my slant board, listening to an audible book and creating an image of your beloved best friend for you to treasure & pass on to the future generations with stories & laughter. I am created images for my portfolio to share with you here and on my Instagram page. I am accompanied by Mylo the husky, Benny the retired seeing eye dog, 4 ninja cats, one hedgehog, two bunnies, two sugar gliders and my darling, angelic beloved chow chow pup, Kenai.
As we ventured through 2020- the COVID 19 pandemic - I spent a majority of my time creating dog portraits for friends and honing my colored pencil style even more. In March of 2020, I decided to draw an illustration for a jigsaw puzzle about camping and outdoor activities in Montana. My partnership with Lonna at Camp-On was born. Due to the pandemic, it was difficult to find anywhere to print the puzzle. We continued to explore, while working on other ventures. In December 2020, we were finally contacted by a puzzle company and our newest adventure began. After a month of patiently waiting- Our first order of puzzles arrived on January 30th, 2021! We presented the Montana Backcountry puzzle on Facebook and on our ETSY shops - orders rolled in...they continued to POUR in! We SOLD OUT of our first printing of puzzles in the first 24 hours! Then... they sold out for our second printing too! Truly unbelievable and the greatest business day for both of us! We filled new orders, and I decided to design the Last Chance Lane: Vintage Camper puzzle. The banner across the top started with Montana and now, there are other states printed as well. I would like to eventually print all 50 states! I have also printed Bozeman & Missoula for our local football rivalry! (Go Bobcats!) As the first two designs rolled off the shelves across the country - I started to design Central Bark. I grew up in New Jersey, so Central Park in NYC was familiar to me as my father worked in the Big Apple when I was a kid. Combining dogs and the most famous park into one puzzle scene just made sense! October 2021, Central Bark was released! As we zoom towards the holiday season - our puzzles are in West Yellowstone, Helena, Augusta, Laurel & Bozeman, Montana. This has been a very exciting year. Oh - did I happen to mention I illustrated my first Middle reader book cover with a Montana publisher. Racoon Summer was released in April 2022... Since then I have enjoyed creating more puzzle designs which are on my Puzzle Shop page here. Thank you for following my mini story, I look forward to chatting with you. Please share my Puzzle Shop with your friends!
~Lucy Davis: mom, British Mini Cooper driver, author, baker, glamper, pet spoiler, puzzle designer, middle reader cover artist and freelance illustrator in Helena, Montana.