Panda

A local art store often puts wooden canvases on sale. During one of these sales I purchased some small ones to see how it would be to work on wood. Last Friday inspired by a meme I started almost 5 years ago now, I made this little piece. I used watercolors, colored pencils, and a white paint pen for the painting and the magenta edges are acrylic. I am extremely happy with how this came out. This panda is my current benchmark for how the rest of my work should look.

Happy Year of the Rabbit

A year to catch our breaths and calm down. Last year was rough, so many hardships came down upon people I know and love. I am hoping with the start of this year we can all heal from these trials, grow, and find balance.

My plans for myself are to simply stay on track. I have developed a great work routine over the past 6 months and I don’t want to loose it. As I continue to develop my illustration I am mainly spending time on my own ideas. To keep me on track I have signed up for some online group projects. You can see on the right of this post widgets for them, 250 words a day from Inky Girl and the Picture Book Dummy Challenge (that’s really a twibbon, I also put on my site). I am very excited to be participating!

Also keeping me on track are my weekly post themes, today, Animal Wednesday! I always like to illustrate the animal of the year. However, this is the first year I am happy with and willing to share my drawing. My year of the Rat image defied gravity, literally my rat was standing on air because of a bad perspective. Anyway, this is my rabbit, I am selling this piece on my etsy store too.

Playing along with the other holidays I am planning on making 3 or 4 Valentine’s Critters. Here is my first one:

Happy Year of the Rabbit I wish you all well for this year!

Sculpey/Clay – 1 of 2

Clay. The medium that relaxes me and makes me feel like I am refreshing my creativity while I work. Example, I worked on projects until 2am last night and didn’t notice the time at all. Over the years I have learned some tricks as well as found other artists who’s work in polymer is truly inspiring.

My relationship with clay started my Sophomore year of college after a horrible winter quarter in Rochester. I was feeling down and out, ready to quit illustration. Things had to change so, I took a quarter of electives: print making, metals/jewelery, and hand building clay (because throwing classes were full thanks goodness!). It was a revitalizing quarter. I would spend many extra hours in the ceramics studio finishing my sculptures because, having my hands wet, dirty, and kneading clay brought me back to life.

Continuing with clay that needed a kiln was outside of my realm. However, I found sculpey which, can be cooked in my oven, a satisfying replacement. This was introduced to me by dimensional illustration class and Teresa. She started out simpley and by the end of our college career she was a master at making all of her art with sculpey. It was impressive and beautiful.

These influences started me making ornaments for all of my cousins. Making over 20 ornaments every year since 2003 was how I learned the ropes of polymer clay.

The year after I left college I was jobless and watching a lot of TV when I saw a Converse commercial featuring Meredith Dittmar. Completely inspired I have been regularly checking out her guys since then. For my first date with Matt we actually got to see her work in a local gallery. A year later I bought him our favorite piece from the show as an anniversary present.

Seeing her work made me want to work beyond the ornaments but, it wasn’t until September 2009-when I signed up for a craft fair where I couldn’t sell my ornaments-that I focused and made something different. Desiring to still make something functional I made magnets. This year I again was part of the craft fair and I stepped it up again. Having gotten some small vials from a biology lab I knew I wanted to fill them with my own scientific specimens.

After two craft fairs and being on top of getting product made I started selling on etsy. I watch the feeds seeing what else comes up and yes watching to see where my pieces land in the pages of items for sale. One quiet day I came upon this shop Beastlies. These Beastlies by Leslie Levings are so completely adorable I adopted Garen. Since, he loves butter and I didn’t want him to be alone, I made him a friend named Butter. They are already pals and keep me company living on my drawing desk.


Making my own creatures has been the ultimate goal since I started expanding from ornaments. Today I have gotten started, these are my Cuddly Critters.


100!

My 100th post. I have been so nervous since I realized I had hit this mile marker. I wanted to be sure I posted something good. The pressure has been on! Although, stars aligned and a few things came together. 1. my husband had given me the prompt “where do dreams come from” 2. my winter card needed to be finished this week so I can mail it off before Thanksgiving so everyone has my new address 3. I think my style is showing itself

I like to draw and draw and draw and muddle over a piece forever. It’s why I enjoy burnishing. However, I also feel something about that method restrains me from another part of myself. Over the summer I played with all the materials sitting on my desk trying new things and watched all the talented people I have found through twitter and conferences. You all have been so inspiring and encouraging. Thank you. For any who have been following along and watching my progress thanks for coming along with me on this journey. I think a corner has been turned!

I am going to do a giveaway for this event, a print of this piece, 11 x 14. Leave a comment by next Tuesday 11:59pm and I will announce a winner Wednesday, the 17th.

Angry Giraffe

In July I was sketching animals to put in my Sketchables interview. Thank you Sketchables for hosting me!

Giraffes are kind of my signature animal. I figured putting a giraffe in my interview as “what I draw” would be very appropriate. However, as I sketched nothing was coming out and none of the giraffes where particularly pleased to be in my sketchbook. One in particular just looked pissed off. But, his disgruntled behavior continued to amuse me so I drew him again in a finished illustration.

I really enjoyed making this piece; using messy lines to emphasis the mood. I am also pleased with his head shape. A problem I sometimes face is breaking free from reference and I feel this giraffe truly comes from my world. And here is the original sketch. I love that the scanner made a darker side to the image, it’s so appropriate.

Stuff Made!

After a stirring blog post by Dani I sat down this weekend and tackled some art I have been planning to make for Halloween since July.

No more being completely absorbed in crazy books-although, I did finish book 2 of The Hunger Games-or family things-even though Matt mandolined(sliced) off a sizable piece of his thumb-would keep me from completing my Arsenic and Old Lace trading cards.

I have made these available for sale at my esty store which, is now open! You can also find my mildly creepy sculpy specimens too.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!

Later I will also be posting another comic strip, come back soon!

Frosty the Gourdman

My friend Dani and her sister Niki made a fantastic comic for Halloween this year. Frosty the Gourdman has risen this October so you better check him out while it is his season!

Given that he is such a rich character and I LOVE Halloween, I decided to make some fan art. I also wanted to have a Frosty the Gourdman sitting around the house.

For less pixelated-bigger pictures click on the images.

Happy Halloween!