Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Illustration Friday: Voices

Not exactly sure how this one came to be--definitely a right brain process. Voices brought up howling coyotes, and choirs and the season brought up angels.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Kreativ Blogger Award

So I've seen other blogs getting awards and this is the first time I've gotten one! Thanks to theartofpuro for choosing me.
So here's the rules:
1. Put the logo on your blog
2. Link back to the person who nominated you
3. Pass it on to five other bloggers you admire.
The blogs I'm chosing are:

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Illustration Friday: Rambunctious

Now that we live in an apartment and no longer have a back yard, all of us have to learn how to navigate the dog parks. Our dogs have never had any interest in chasing balls--but it turns out they love chasing dogs who chase balls. They were a little rambunctious in their pursuit of other dogs. Gonna have to learn some dog-etiquette.
(I'm back with my digital drawing, because I found my husband's wacom unpacking a box, and he said he no longer needs one at work! yippee!)

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Illustration Friday: Balloon

So this image came to me from the multiple orchards we passed on our way through CA. I had a lot of technical trouble with this one. My Wacom tablet did not make the transfer--(sniff!) and my scanner isn't here yet--so I had to do all the drawing with my touch pad--agh!

Friday, November 28, 2008

California or Bust

So this is a photo of my little car hitched to the Uhaul trailer. It doesn't quite look like the sketch I did a while back for IF Packed. But then you can't see the inside! We had four people, two dogs and a cat stuffed in there.
(The tree swing is in the moving truck--but unfortunately the tree wouldn't fit and had to stay in the yard.)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Illustration Friday: Wise

Just a quick sketch for this one. Moving takes a toll on the blog. So this week's topic is Wise and it reminded me of this owl face I keep seeing in the texture on the ceiling above my bed. I figured I'd better capture him before I leave the house. The move is less than two weeks away. The blog will be low on the priority list.
Update on my last entry. The neighbor and I have started talking again and things are much better. I guess there is some wisdom there in getting over stumbling blocks.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Illustration Friday: Repair

I've found myself in the curious position of not talking to my neighbor. Our kids had a fight, some things were said and now neither of us wants to come forward with an apology. Having somehow missed this stage as a teenager I'm at a loss for what to do. And with moving soon wonder if it will ever be repaired at all?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Illustration Friday: Late

Luckily this hasn't happened at our house (yet...)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Illustration Friday: String

A third grade science experiment involving string theory.

For some reason "String theory" was the first thing that came to mind when I read the topic. But not really understanding what string theory is, I had no concrete visual for it. Then I thought what would a kid think string theory was? A theory about what happens when your sister trips over string of course.

I think the composition is working, but I'm not all that happy with the color. (But didn't want to do it again...)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Illustration Friday: Packed

This one seems to go with what I've been focusing on lately. (and how cool is it that Sarah suggested the topic?) How am I going to consolidate all this stuff? I've been giving away, and become quite familiar with the posting screen on Craigslist... But as a certified (certifiable?) pack rat all this has been difficult for me.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Illustration Friday: Clique

Pepperrock wasn't very concerned with what the other horses thought.

I've had horses on the brain this week. As part of preparing for a move to California (where my husband found another job) my 23 year old BLM Mustang (whom I had for 19 years) has graduated to another family. He now has a little boy to adore him. And since he now lives in the pasture that is their backyard--he will be loved on a daily basis instead of a sporadic weekly one. (I just couldn't see dragging the poor horse 2000 miles so he could live even farther away from me than he does now.) This photo of Oberon was taken just a couple weeks ago.

I struggled with color on this one. I got a new computer and haven't figured out how to calibrate the monitor the way I need it to be.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Illustration Friday: Clutter

Boy did this topic come at an appropriate time! The foundation fixing involved rolling the carpet back so they could jackhammer 5 large holes in the floor and drive these big pipes into the ground, and then fill the holes back in with cement. Naturally furniture got moved which displaced a lot of clutter from its natural habitat...
However my daughter's room looks like this on a normal basis, regardless of what is happening downstairs. While I was in there sketching she came in and said, "Mom, what are you doing?"
With her four year old hands on her hips, "I don't want you to draw in here."
"Because. I don't want you to get pen on the floor."
I can't decide if I like the black and white or colored version better. The color makes things look more cluttered, but I did it quick because with everything else going on I haven't had much time.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Illustration Friday: Routine

Routine was difficult. Especially right now when the family routine is all shaken up. But opportunities are presenting themselves in the form of interviews and tentative offers. And the foundation guys are coming tomorrow to put some piers under the sagging spots.

Eventually I thought about one of my routines which is riding my mustang about once a week. Sometimes I take my daughter out and let her ride him (under close supervision...) However it's beginning to look like the family will be relocating, and I'm not sure my 23 year old horse will be able to take another cross country trip. This horse has traveled from Nevada to New Mexico to Colorado to Texas.

I tried to push myself outside of my routine color choices--but I'm not sure I'm happy with what I came up with.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Illustration Friday: Detach

I believe in synchronicity, but still I was quite amazed when I saw that this week's topic was detach. My husband got laid off from his job this week, and at the same time the house we just bought is sinking causing cracks in the walls and stuck doors. So I've been working on being detached from imaginary scenarios produced by worry and just trying to deal with the facts. We will get the house fixed so we can sell it if we need to relocate--or if he finds a job here it will be fixed for us.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Watercolor Wednesdays: Triple Billy Goats

The Watercolor Wednesday theme this week is Triplets, last week it was Three Billy Goats Gruff so I combined them.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Illustration Friday: Sail

“Erreck, erreck,” croaked Bandi Boodle Boo
as the ship glided through the South China Sea.
With a kind look the helmsman said, “Chin up my friend.
You have not heard them all.”

I'd been wanting to try coloring a sketch from my book Bandi Boodle Boo Learns to Cock-A-Doodle-Doo in this style I've been working on and this week's topic was perfect. My story is about a rooster who learns to crow by sailing around the world and hearing roosters crow in different languages.
Thanks to my Inklings friends who helped me sort out some of the composition problems!

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Illustration Friday: Poof

Molly wondered if the magic math wand had been a wise wish.

I realised I was habitually using the portrait format, so I tried to push myself out into a full spread landscape format.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Illustration Friday: Canned

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

The topic just seemed to call for it. What was interesting about doing this was that my still life skills have gotten a little rusty. I thought how hard could it be to draw a can that isn't moving--but those angles can be sneaky.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Illustration Friday: Enough

When it comes to cookies, my family can never get enough. (I must say that getting my kids to pose for this one wasn't difficult...)

I'm not sure about the dog. It adds to the story but seems to take away something from the composition. So here is it with no dog. Thoughts?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Illustration Friday: Foggy

While the painting process went pretty quick for this one, getting the idea to come in out of the mist was more difficult. At first I thought of the fog that is often and element in Chinese watercolors. And then I thought of this wonderful red pagoda on top of Lion's Head Mountain and the way the departing mist left dew on the residence of this huge spider there. (Many years ago some friends and I climbed to the top of Lion's Head Mountain, in Taiwan, and spent the night there.)
It was fun to get my old favorites the watercolors and bamboo brushes out after working on the computer so much.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Illustration Friday: Sour

Luckily the watermelons were not sour!
So while this illustration is pretty much what was in my head I'm not sure how effective it is as an illustration. I'm afraid it shows a moment in time rather than telling a story? What do you think?

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Illustration Friday: Fierce

There was fierce competition during the three legged race at the company picnic. Actually the competition in the kid's division wasn't that fierce, my son and his partner won even after they fell down on the home stretch. But the adult division...who knew there were so many hard core three legged racers out there???

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Illustration Friday: Forgotten

I wonder what things the Anasazi knew that modern people have forgotten? I certainly haven't forgotten the trip I took to Canyon de Chelle about sixteen years ago. I went on the trip with my Mom and two of her friends. We camped on the rim of the canyon which is located in the Navajo Indian Reservation and spans the border of Arizona and New Mexico. A native guide was required for anyone who wanted to hike into the canyon. Our guide was practically as old as the hills around us, his eyes clouded with cataracts, but he scampered down the steep red stone rock into the canyon more quickly than we could! It was a magical journey to a place of incredible beauty. I wonder what happened to make them leave?

(and while I had strong memories of the trip--I had forgotten exactly where I put my photos--finding them took a little excavation.)

Monday, June 02, 2008

Illustration Friday: Baby

For some reason sheep were the first thing that came to mind.
But then I was out riding my horse (the very Mustang who inspired the name for this blog) and I saw this little calf off all by his lonesome in a great big field. He near the fence I was riding along. He watched us go by with his big brown eyes and bright shiny nose and then he turned and in that awkward little lope that calves have returned to his herd.
(These are old fashioned India ink--created after the kids were in bed... Just for those of you who are wondering the bottom image in my Worry post is the digital one. Don't let the signature fool you.)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Illustration Friday: Worry

So this set of illustrations fits the topic in that I have certain worries about them. One is how well they relate to each other. (One is traditional media one is digital. Can you tell which is which?) I'm doing the digital because while I love the look (and even the process) of the ink resist it is time consuming, messy (India ink and kids can be volatile mixture...) and sends a lot of paint down the drain. So the computer is still time consuming (and has its own set of environmental impacts) but saves the carpets and drains--and can be walked away from at a moments notice for the myriad of small crisises that need immediate handling.
I had a portfolio review a few weeks ago and one of the things she thought I needed were a few sets of images, (two were good so that I could put one on each side of a postcard for mailers), that showed a story progression. So I'm trying to work on that. One of the things that has been great about Illustration Friday for me is that it has kept me working and given me a few more portfolio pieces. But since I eventually want to illustrate picture books--I need more things that show a story rather than a vignette.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Ilustration Friday: Seed

This weeks topic seemed so easy--that it almost didn't get done. It was easy to just shove it aside among all the other things going on. And then there are all the ideas that are cropping up that need tending. I did this with a good ol' Sharpie. So easy to grab and draw... Of course I remember my daughter's lesson ("drawing on my bed was a bad idea.") and put a piece of scrap paper under my work.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

SCBWI Birdhouse

This was my artistic work for the week. (I just couldn't get it to fit with the IF theme of "Wrinkles") This weekend was the Austin area SCBWI conference, and as part of the conference we had a silent auction of birdhouses that had been decorated by our illustrators.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Illustration Friday: Primitive

Last week's topic was "Fail." And because last Saturday was U-haul day for our move--I did indeed fail to illustrate the topic.

This Saturday was camping with the Cub Scout Pack. So there was lots of primitive entertainment involving balls and trees. While I was working on this, in a folding chair under a huge oak tree, my four year old daughter was drawing next to me and she wanted to draw what I was drawing too. So here is her rendition, which fits the primitive definition of a process in it's very early stages. (however her primitive efforts are far from unskilled.)

All the little eyes on the left are actually her name "alive," with faces. She will work from left to right on words, but goes up as she runs out of space.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Illustration Friday: Save

As I pondered this topic I thought about all the things that do indeed need saving: dolphins, rain forests, mutual funds (and don't forget Mustangs.) But then I became interested in things you can't save, like soap bubbles. They are pretty impossible to capture. They don't photograph well. And every time I try to depict them I'm less than satisfied (including this time.) (I even tried blowing bubbles in the freezer--they pop just as they are forming.)

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Illustration Friday: Homage

While I've encountered the word numerous times, especially in regards to artwork paying respect to another artist; I realized I didn't have a personal concept of the word. The dictionary revealed that it has origins in feudalism. As in a vassal would pay homage to his lord. So I guess I'm paying homage here to the roots of the word, and to children's literature which has roots in fairy tales set in the middle ages.
Artistically I can pay homage to my mom, who in her own artistic quest, exposed me to innumerable creative techniques, my grandmother, a portrait artist, and my outstanding art teacher, Cassandra Gordon Harris, who taught me many of the finer points about art (as well as how to peel an orange slice with a knife and fork.) She took me outside my boundaries, sometimes literally (Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands!) Thanks.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Illustration Friday: Pet Peeves

I didn't think I would do an entry this week. I guess I've been successful in eliminating some of my negative thinking, I couldn't think of a single pet peeve off the top of my head. And I got stuck visually on cats and dogs... Then I realized it didn't have to be MY pet peeve, it could be a peeve of my pet's! My cat hates to be combed--and she's a long haired cat so it really is necessary or it is hairball city around here.
I'm still experimenting with my computer emulated style here. I did this one in a positive process (adding black lines) instead of a negative process (erasing away everything but the line.) I think the negative process works better in emulating the paper style. But is more time consuming.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Illustration Friday: Heavy

This is a combo of last week's topic: "Garden" and this week's: "Heavy." (I had a busy week last week with a birthday party and house guests.) This is another computer generated image mimicking the ink resist technique.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Illustration Friday: Leap

A little dancer doodle of a jeté. I did this with brush and ink.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Illustration Friday: Multiple

A friend of mine has been asking for an illustration of longhorn cattle for a long time. So since cattle always come in multiple numbers here they are. This was done digitally in an effort to mimic an ink resist style.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Illustration Friday: Theory

Theory. That's even hard to write about, much less depict non-verbally. But the regional Science Fair in Austin is coming up and my son will be part of the team representing his class. They did a hamster maze-but I only had my husband's mouse for a model...

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Illustration Friday: Choose

Choosing has always been a dilemma for me... But for this topic I was inspired by something that happened the other day. My daughter wanted me to play freeze tag with her. I asked her how only two of us could play freeze tag? But she had it all figured out. We would find out who was it first by playing "Minnie Mouse, Minnie Mouse painted on her house. What color do you think?" I said "Red." She said, "How do you spell that?" Then she tapped it out on our feet R. E. D. as I spelled it out. After a few rounds of this one of her feet was still out--she was it. She chased me until she froze me. Then we sat down again and played Minnie Mouse to see who would be it next...
(this was done with watercolor crayons)

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Illustration Friday: Blanket

This is a photo altered in Photoshop. I didn't feel like drawing anything out this weekend. So I was going to abandon the topic and then I had an idea. So I got my "model" to pose for me. She was delighted to throw on the blanket and chase me making ghost noises. Here is the original photo so you can see I did quite a bit with it.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Illustration Friday: Tales and Legends

Scritch, Scratch. The ghost of the Hairy Man still hangs from the trees; attempting to scare off drivers along his road. Left as a babe, raised by animals, he has been defending Brushy Creek for almost 200 years.

I was fascinated when I first moved to this area to see there was a Hairy Man road. And then I learned there was a Hairy Man Festival! This of course peaked my curiosity. I had to drive along this Hairy Man road, and it is indeed a spooky drive. The woods are thick and the wide spreading live oaks touch over the road. It has that feeling like you've stepped into storytime. But then Round Rock, TX is rooted in legend. The town takes its name from a relatively small rock in the middle of Brushy Creek that marked a safe passage across the water along the Chisholm trail. * The Hairy Man is said to be a child that was accidentally left behind in the 1800's. He became a hermit and would frighten passing stage coaches by hanging from the trees and letting his legs drag on the tops. He was killed either by being trampled by the horses or run over by one of the coaches. But they say you can still hear what sounds like scratching on the roof of your car.

* The Chisholm trail leading from Texas to Kansas is the most well known but there was also a Chisum Trail that went from Texas through New Mexico and up into Colorado. Growing up in New Mexico I'd heard of this trail. And given how complex it is to drive to my parents house from where I live now I couldn't imagine what the Chisum trail was doing in Round Rock. (Nor why all the streets were spelled Chisholm...)