Sketchbook Snippet

Today isn’t coming together quite how I wanted. So, rather than rush finishing a sketch for you I have chosen a snippet from my sketchbook to share.

On the left is a little girl surrounded by legs so tall you can’t even see their torsos(hard to see this is a very rough sketch). She is a character I have been thinking about for sometime. I don’t know her story yet, but I know her now and some of the folks around her. Next to her is Sparrow, “who shot Cock Robin with her bow and arrow.” I want to take this to a finished illustration. I have actually sketched Sparrow a couple of times, this is my current favorite. I want to have the sketch’s looseness in the my finished piece because it seems to fit the rawness of the story. This is a ¬†Sparrow, it is a variety from Costa Rica, the Rufous-collared Sparrow.


Wild Elyse

Family members tend to show up in my sketches, as I’m sure they do for other artists. I’m working on a new character and my cousin is definitely part of the inspiration. She is a firecracker and a sweet heart. Here is a sketch study of her running on ice. It seems appropriate on Leap Day and the first “big” winter storm of the season.

That’s the Kind of House We Live In!*

This week is full of things to do! Lucien turns 3, he had a first dentist appointment, I went to the first Crafty Biz meeting of 2012, and I have been preparing like a bad woman for Arisia As I have been preserving specimens some of them have not cooperatively moved into their vessels. A couple have ended up in strange places around the house.

But that has always been the kind of house I wanted to live in so I have no problem with it! Just like There’s a Wocket In My Pocket, which has always been a favorite!

*”That’s the kind of house I live in” –There’s a Wocket in my Pocket, Dr. Seuss

Where elements combine

I loved the time during the holidays. It was quiet, it was just the three of us home, we easily moved around each other, and I was able to get a lot done. I nestled into my own space and just started producing work. I believe I was able to complete as many illustrations as I did because I stepped away from observing and focused on making my own work. It is very easy to be swept up in the beauty of everyone else’s illustrations. I still check everyone’s work out but, I am being more careful to give myself more time.

After I got sick mid-December and realized my deadline for a new portfolio was closer than ever I stopped lollygagging and got to it. I have two big deadlines in January. The portfolio for the SCBWI Winter Conference, January 26th, and Arisia January 14th.

My participation in Arisia was only finalized at the end of December; right after I completed a good chunk of the portfolio. I knew I could take my last two days of Holiday time to make Specimens. My time spent with them was very successful. I made three new large critters and eight small ones. Then, at the beginning of Monday I knew I needed to switch back to painting.

I wasn’t completely ready to put the critters away so I compromised and decided to sketch my most playful one. The sketches quickly became a firm base for a new painting, which you can see above. I am so glad for this meeting of my painting with my sculpting. I feel like I have broken through something and a new path has emerged. I am looking forward to seeing where this goes.

Fierce Dancer

Dancing constantly inspires me. Watching people that have committed their time to dancing causes my pencil to start swirling marks. The most recent video I have watched that inspired me was a making of commerical for Weetabix Cereal. Their dancer is a young girl named Arizona. She is my hero. Her dancing is fierce and her attitude is strong. She rocks!

She has now joined my sketchbook pages:



Edit: I forgot to add a quote quiz! Here’s one for Thanksgiving.


Quote Quiz: “The Sicilians are very big into Thanksgiving.”

A Leaf Fire

Something about the leaves this year have me thinking fire. Last weekend we built a camp fire and roasted marshmallows. The event took me back to a weekend I spent with a group of Bluegrass musicians. All night long they sat around a camp fire continuously jamming. It was a marvelous night. I have drawn that night before and here is another version with a leaf as our fire.

Quote Quiz 2: “No self respecting southern makes instant grits. I take pride in my grits”

Currently Reading: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor
Currently Watching: Friends Season 2

Baby Fish Mouth

Here is my first go at making an illustration with dots for eyes. It still needs a little work but, I am excited about this new direction.

Quote Quiz: “I’m only an elected official I can’t make decisions by myself!”

Dots or Eyes

I have a request for opinions!

Which do you like better, the eyes draw with dots or fully rendered?

p.s. I do realize the boy is not the same age better the top two and the bottom two. I liked seeing how that played a role in different ages.

Check out Fanartica, a group of illustrators making fan art of entertainment they love. Thanks to Ellen T. Crenshaw I got to become a contributor, here is my first submission.

Quote Quiz:”Funny thing about this document, it was never notarized”

Currently Reading:
Hamster and Cheese by Colleen AF Venable illustrated by Stephanie Yue
Currently Watching: Kung Fu Panda

I love the idea of people riding dragon flies. When I watch dragon flies moving through the air they always look like they are having such a good time. They seem to be spinning and circling all around each other in a group.


Quote: “A gust of wind. . . . A dog barks. . . . Cue the truck. . . . Exit Herman; walk out into the bank.”

Currently Reading: Brenda Star Girl Reporter by Dale Messick
Currently Watching: Blues Clues (the little one is under the weather today)