Monday, March 3, 2014


This is all coming together people. I'm working on a picture book and have been inspired to work on a picture book dummy (yipes! zoiks!). I recently received a fantastic critique by a professional and was encouraged to do more of my narwhals. There's a story here. I'm excited to work on bringing it to life.

On the path...

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Work, work, work...

Honestly, if I could bypass picking up the kids at school (sorry kids), dinner, homework, laundry, eating, and sleeping, I would keep working! No, I haven't hit a romantic spot in my work where everything is coming up roses. Rather, I have finally gotten myself over the artistic "hump" as it were, and found that I can just keep going.

This watercolor doesn't work? Scrap it. Start again. This sketch looks funny? Scrap it. Start again. Characters not coming out just right? Totally scrap it and do sometime different. One day I stopped drawing narwhals and just drew babies. Just because.

Figure studies

I can improve everywhere! Finally I have found that sweet spot where I can just sit down and start working on something and just keep going! I don't bemoan the fact (at least not a LOT), that this particular piece didn't turn out. I just keep going. Whoo hoo!

Right now I am having a hard time with my watercolors. I love working in watercolor! It was one of my favorite mediums to work with in college. The professor who taught my watercolor class was so good (at teaching and watercolor alike) that I took it twice! So, even though I am able to do sketches like this:

Watercolor Sketch

I am not so happy with my children's book characters in this medium right now. So I have turned to colored pencil for the moment. I think I like it so far. This is a sketch I did today with ink and colored pencils. Cat sort of blends in, but otherwise, I like it. I wish I had a grey and white rug like that one.

However, after a thorough and insightful critique by a trusted professional in the field, apparently vector is my strong suit. Hm. So I am not sure what to do with this pencil drawing. Expound upon it? Or do I convert it to vector like all my other drawings?

I am still learning. Being in a like-minded community helps. Everyone has opinions and not all of them are the same. At some point my work will strike a chord with someone out there. Then I will be IN!

On the path...

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Portfolio Re-DO!

Ugh. Sometimes when inspiration hits, I jump for joy! Other times, I want to go hide under a table in the fetal position. This is one such occasion. Last week I attended a free webinar hosted by Mark Mitchell with special guest, Wendy Martin.

The webinar was all about using the program, Adobe Illustrator for children's illustration. Now, most people would be super-excited to attend just such a webinar. FREE! Right? I have to admit I was a bit reluctant. You see, I've been a graphic designer for 13 years and have been using the Adobe suite for a bit longer than that. I work all day on a computer. I do vector art on the computer. The last thing I wanted to do was sit down to the computer at night to draw.

For work, I did things like this:
Fun, right? A cute little t-shirt design here, infographics there. Seriously though, I was more excited to sit down to the drafting table and draw with REAL pens and pencils, and paint with watercolor and acrylics. For me, this was so cathartic and relaxing. Going back to the computer was not even in my thoughts.

However, after a mere 5 minutes of this webinar by Wendy (a highly talented artist - check out her website!), I realized my mistake. I've been frustrated with color, and correcting mistakes, things you can't really control in traditional mediums. While I am not ditching the traditional by any means (I actually start there), I realized that my talents do lie in Illustrator. It's just what I'm good at doing!

Here is a before and after shot of an illustration of my lovely little narwhals:

You can probably tell which is which. This was my first attempt at "vectoring" my original art. What do you think? Not bad for one day, eh? Obviously, there is more that I can do, but for right now, I'm working night and day on transforming my portfolio. I hope this works!

On the path...