Monday, May 26, 2014

Creative Tuesdays: The Joy Of Socks!

Hello All!  Happy Memorial Day, if you are in the U.S. :-D  Below is my submission for C.T. and "The Joy of Socks."

I took an illustration I had done and re-designed it digitally for this theme.  I wanted to turn a completely unrelated to fashion piece, into somewhat more of a fashion illustration-y piece.  So, I did some digital changes on her outfit, and made the background and floor a bit more graphic (I think the original detail was distracting from the main point of the picture.  Apart from the girl's face, the socks are the biggest part of her outfit that stands out. Now, with the purple, black, and white changes I made working on this digitally, I think they pop out better.  And it was a lot of fun to design the sock pattern itself, which works for the theme "The Joy of Socks!"

I am behind and have to get to commenting on everybody's work from last, and this time.  I am hoping to get to everything tomorrow.  Everybody's drawings that I've peeked at are very fun, and full of sock deisngs I'd wear in real life!

So, without further ado, here are important links!

Below, is the link to Mister Toast's Website:

Next, is the link to his overall Blog:

And finally, the link to the entry where until tomorrow May 27th, you can post your "socks" submissions:

Hope you are all well!


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

"Retro" For Illustration Friday

So, for this week's "Illustration Friday submission," I'm submitting an ink and watercolor illustration I recently finished entitled, "A Bilby, and Quokka, and Dingo, Oh My!"

They are Victoriana-styled marsupials, which I felt was appropriate for the theme of "Retro."  I took care to design their costumes according to that old-fashioned and retro period, and even their toy (the hobby horse) is vintage and not one you'd see as readily available nowadays.

I've had vintage children's books with Edwardian or Victorian-styled costumes cats, dogs, rabbits, and other more immediately recognizable creatures-- and they always inspired me.  But one thing I've been working on lately is a theme of Australian Animal Illustrations.  Finding those in Victorian costumes is a little harder.  And in my illustration, these three are either less known, or less appreciated, creatures of the Outback (for once in my life, not a Koala to be seen)!

The one riding the hobby horse is a little Bilby girl.  Bilbies are a sort of rabbit-like rodent with a mouse nose and tail, with bunny ears.  In Australia, they're endangered-- so people are encouraged to buy Chocolate Bilbies to support the "Easter Bilby" (and not the bunny), as proceeds from said chocolate go towards saving the animals.

The Quokka has gotten popular recently in memes for being cute and smile-y looking in appearance, and mine is smiling while eating a cookie.

And lastly, is my Dingo, the second girl of the group.  They have a bad rep, and can be violent (they are similar to wolves and coyotes), but they are wild creatures and they can also be beautiful- and they play an important part in the Australian ecosystem.

Plus, the great thing about cartoons, illustrations, children's illustrations, comics, and any kind of made up story-- is that realism can be suspended.  Perhaps my Dingo is like the Sharks from "Finding Nemo," but without a chance of relapse.  She's a Vegetarian Dingo who loves her little friends and wouldn't eat them :-p  To paraphrase "Finding Nemo," "Marsupials are Magnificent- Not Meals."

In any case, I'll have prints of these for the comic-con, "Special Edition NYC," coming up in June.  June 14th and 15th at NYC's Javitts' Center.  Got to finish some more comics and prints before that show!  So many things, so little time.

Finally, for links:

To submit to this week's topic of "Retro" for "Illustration Friday," go to:

To see the section of my site with this piece, other patterns/designs, and more Australian Animals, go to:

And for an introduction to neat Aussie Animals, go to:

Thanks for reading!  Hope everyone has a great week.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Oak Tree for Creative Tuesdays

So, here's my first C.T. submission in a while!  I'm so glad it's back, and I missed seeing everyone's work, being inspired by themes, and being excited for each time Mister Toast would come up with a different prompt..

My piece this time around is a little different stylistically from what I usually do.  I tend to go heavy on cross-hatching and details, and I wanted to do something a little more free.  So, the above is a sketch I did with Pentel Brush Pens, mostly, and a couple of markers I had in my bag from teaching earlier.  It was a lot of fun, and next time I will use watercolor paper.  The drawing paper I used was quite thin, and pulled a bit with the weight of the ink.  Anyway, I tend to work in super small and thin lines, so for a change of style/less wear on my hand, I let my wrist go free-er for this drawing.

Obviously these oak leaves are stylized, but I wanted to get the feel of the leaves (hence the quick and freely rendered lines), and to include acorns.  There are a few places the acorns are hidden.  And the bark also has hidden things (as hiding animals in bark is something I love to do, and submitted for a C.T. theme a while ago- I'm hoping to create more drawings, either like the one above or the one in the link below, featuring animal characters and neat hidden things):

Anyway.  Since 2013 I have had more dealings with raccoons than I can comprehend.  They are so cute, but so destructive, and ever since my experiences having to help re-home some, I find they're popping up everywhere in my own drawings, and also my life- I have now endless sightings of raccoon children's books, toys, advertisements, and I even noticed a raccoon change-purse in JFK when recently in NY to see family.  But, I know from experience they like to climb Oak Trees.  So, in my Oak Tree, one is snoozing, and the other is thinking.  It's a little hard to guess since it's cryptic, but he's thinking, "Aw," and then there's a picture of an acorn in his thought bubble.  So, that's a pun where he's saying "Aw. nuts."  Since the other one took his favorite spot and is sleeping in it.

In any case, it's now time for some other links!  

Here is the link to submit to "Oak Trees" for Mister Toast's Creative Tuesdays (due Tuesday May Thirteenth):

Here is a link to my site overall, where random raccoons can also be found:

And, finally, below is a link to Alexandra of Blue Chair Diary's Etsy, where her art can be bought:

 She is an amazing artist, with inspirational and sweet watercolors that are rendered with fine ink lines.  She is also married to Mister Toast!   I wanted to link to her Etsy so people can not only see her work, but support it.  She deserves all the love and support possible right now.

Hope you are all well, and looking forward to talking to the longtime C.T. members again, and meeting some new ones.