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March 17, 2013

Artist Abigail Friedman McLean Takes On Crane

In the second of our “Breath Easy” one-of-a-kind design campaign for Crane’s drop humidifiers, we welcome artist and illustrator, Abigail Friedman McLean, as the Sharpie marker artist for the March edition.Crane’s Drop humidifiers are beautiful shapes and we wondered what it would be like to make them even more distinctive objects for the home or office. “Breathe Easy” is our one-of-a-kind design campaign that takes our drop humidifiers and pairs them with the talent of visual artists from around the country. We thought that Sharpie markers were the perfect medium for artists to create something stunning to place on the drop humidifier canvas.

Over the next few months, Cranedesignforbetterliving.com will feature the work of artists who will use a Crane drop humidifier as their canvas as part of our “Breathe Easy” campaign. Using Sharpie markers as their medium, artists and illustrators will be asked to make a one-of-a-kind work of art on a Crane drop humidifier to be raffled off through the Crane-USA Facebook page.

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I wanted to ask Abigail a few questions about her Crane “Breathe Easy” experience and I was thrilled that she really loved it.

Abigail: When Crane approached me to draw an image on one of their drop humidifiers, I think my first reaction was, “no way”, mostly because I was scared to ruin one of those nice humidifiers. Normally, I draw with ink on paper, scan the drawings, and then clean them up and add color in Photoshop which gives me way more control over my work. In this case, I guess the thought of not being able to control the outcome so readily intimidated me. That fear only lasted a few minutes though, and then I thought, “why not?” Turns out making mistakes was a part of the process. I liked the imperfections I couldn’t control.

Elizabeth: After doing this project, did it make you think of other images you’d like to draw on Crane products and why? What about using Sharpie products again?

Abigail: Honestly, while I was working on the March humidifier, I was having so much fun I didn’t want to stop. I had to make myself stop before I covered the entire thing with my doodles. Sometimes less is more! As far as applying my artwork to other Crane products, I’d love to apply my concept to other colors of the drop humidifier and maybe experiment with other Sharpie colors, especially the metallic sharpie colors. I think that would be fun.

Elizabeth: Do you have any thoughts about one-of-a-kind objects like the one you’ve made for Crane? What makes this project stand out to you?

Abigail: Well, I think it’s a great idea for Crane to invite artists to contribute one-of-a-kind artwork! When Crane approached me, they gave me complete freedom to do whatever I wanted to do as long as I used Sharpie markers. That never happens! I also work as a graphic designer and it’s so rare to work with a client that doesn’t want to control every aspect of the piece. So the fact that Crane just let me go and do my thing was so refreshing! I mentioned to a good friend of mine the project I was working on with Crane, and she didn’t quite understand that it was a one-of-a-kind piece. She said she was looking for it at Target! Now that would awesome.

Abigail Friedman McLean’s illustration work can be found on her website. Check her out. Her work is fun, imaginative and just a little edgy — I guess that’s why we chose her to be March’s “Breathe Easy” artist.

Thank you to Sharpie for donating markers to the artists participating in this challenge.