Monday, December 01, 2014

PiBoIdMo 2014 - Winner!

I do solemnly swear that I have faithfully
executed the PiBoIdMo 30-ideas-in-30-days challenge,
and will, to the best of my ability, parlay my ideas
into picture book manuscripts.

Wow! My fifth year of participating in Picture Book Idea Month (#PiBoIdMo) was another success!! It's always a wonderful challenge… I don't know if it's because so many others are working right along with me and our combined motivation keeps us going or what, but it works… every year for me!

The best part, after 5 years of participating in generating ideas… I've finally started writing! Well, I actually started before PiBoIdMo, (and I've started several projects in the past, but I'm not counting those, because I never finished any of them!), but it was a real confidence booster overall—actually writing something, being happy with it, working through ideas and story structure, getting it critiqued (by friends and an editor!)… it's a whole new avenue for me and I'm super-excited to keep going! On to revisions!!

Congrats to all the other winners as well—it's a long haul, but WE MADE IT!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

New Postcard Promo! (Spring… technically)

I have a new promo postcard ready to go! Okay, I've had it ready to go since mid-May… I've been a little slow this year. Prepared, but slow. Trying to catch up on my blog posts too. I won't even bother to postdate this one, LOL.

Here's the full piece. I call it Polly and Sunny (polar bear & sun bear) and it's the piece I completed for the SCBWI-NM Enchantment Show earlier this year.

This piece was a lot of fun, The original is pretty tiny, but I enlarged the final piece to about 10"x 20". All the line work was layered in digitally.

My goal this year has been to push myself and develop a more blended style of traditional & digital techniques. This was definitely a step in the right direction… but I think I'd like to loosen up even more,  push the characters even further. What say you?

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Getting Ready for the CPSA International Show 2014

Great news! One of the pieces from my book, The Zoo's Annual Piggyback Race, has been accepted into the CPSA's 2014 International Show! It is always such an amazing honor to get into this show… especially with "less-than-traditional" fine art.

a framing work-in-progess

I'm super excited to be framing my first piece from the book. I used to work in a frame shop, so I've done most of my own framing for years. I try to use local shops when I can (strictly for the frame and glass, I cut my own mats and fit it all together myself), but my favorite local shop recently closed and I haven't been able to find another great local source yet.

But getting into this show presents another problem: shipping. There all kinds of requirements for framing the pieces that are accepted and you have prepare a re-usable box so the pieces can be shipped back (if they aren't sold during the show, of course). I used to have a heavy duty Air-Float box for shipping pieces to and from the CPSA Shows… but after 6 shows, that box had to be "retired".

I decided to try an online framing supply, figuring I could knock out two issues: frame & acrylic supply (pieces cannot be framed w/glass) PLUS a shipping solution — since the prepared frame would be shipping to me, I'd have a ready-made box to use!

The plan worked, with complications. The box I received my frame in is not the best, but with some modifications, I should be able to make it work. Also, the piece of acrylic I received has a flaw, a black speck INSIDE the plastic. Fortunately, American Frame's Customer Service was very accommodating and has rush shipped a replacement at no extra cost. AF has an average selection of frames, but the prices are among the best I've seen online. They also had a good selection of small framing supply odds and ends for very reasonable prices.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

SCBWI-NM Illustrator's Meeting, May (Preparing Digital Images for Optimal Print Reproduction)

Yesterday, we had our SCBWI-NM Illustrator's group meeting for May.

As usual, at 5pm we started with dinner and socializing at a local cafe. Unfortunately, I'd had a dental emergency earlier in the day and was on some medication that was not agreeing with me… so I don't really remember much of the evening. :( But I hung in there the best I could and got to chat with people a little.

At 6pm, the we moved on over to Alamosa Books, where Lois Bradley lead a a riveting discussion with us about maximizing digital artwork files for print output. I wish I could say I remember it. I had to lay down for a bit, and only caught snippets of the talk. Luckily, Lois provided a detailed worksheet that details her process and I plan to go over it soon! I do know that members in attendance had many questions for Lois and the whole group had a great time discussing and learning about the topic. ;)

After the talk, we had a brief Show and Tell where local illustrators, Lisa Casaus, and Jeanne Bowman talked about some local events their preparing for. Lisa did a poster for the Albuquerque Mini-Maker Faire coming up in September! Jeanne showed us her amazingly detailed, hand-made box-cards that she's preparing for the Albuquerque Bubonicon in August! Gorgeous work, ladies!

Thankfully, I am recovering well from my bad reaction to the meds. Hopefully that's all behind me now and I can move on to all the work ahead! Until next month!!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day

It's time to celebrate Mom! To honor my lovely mother, I posted a scrapbook page from a mini-scrapbook I made for her several years ago on Instagram, and I thought I'd share it here as well…

The little square sticker is from a line of 3D stickers I designed back in the day. I actually stitched vellum papers and ribbons to the base paper as well. The whole book was so fun to work on and it's been nice to reminisce about those crafting days. :)

Sunday, May 04, 2014

SCBWI-NM Enchantment Show

On May 3rd, SCNWI-NM celebrated the reception event for our first (hopefully annual) Enchantment Show at the Los Griegos Library in Albuquerque. Here's a little more about the show from our Press Release:
A magical art and writing exhibit for children of all ages, Enchantment, will be on view during the month of May at the Los Griegos Library in Albuquerque.  This unique show features collaborative pieces by members of the New Mexico Chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. 

Monday, April 28, 2014

#BNSelfie (a little fun & silliness)

Having a little fun at work… I've been madly promoting and selling my book (it's so awesome to be able to personally put my book in people's hands every week) —and last week at my Barnes & Noble, my little self-published book made the No. 2 spot on our store's top 5 bestsellers! Second only the the Disney phenom, Frozen… and beating out two wildly popular YA novels, plus a Pulitzer prize winner! #shamelessshelpromotion #bnselfie #ohyeah

Friday, April 25, 2014

The New Mexico Book Co-Op (April)

I can't believe it's been a month already… time is just flying by this year and I can't seem to keep up. So much is happening! I've had a crazy and busy week and I almost decided not to go to this NM Book Co-Op meeting, but then I remembered the topic of discussion: Book Sell Sheets.

I'd never even heard of a sell sheet for books until last month's meeting—and the timing turned out to be perfect for me since I ended up needing one for my own book—the very next day. But I had no idea what I was doing when I put that together and I wanted to find out more.

I have to admit, I was a bit late to the luncheon… I basically skipped the lunch part and arrived just as the talk was starting. This time the entire room was given a chance to introduce themselves and their books (if they had one). Then the guest speaker was introduced: John Hoffsis of Treasure House Books & Gifts, on the Old Town Plaza…

Mixing, Blending, and Burnishing: Colored Pencil Workshop

Photos my helper, Lynn Platow, took around and about the workshop day.

As in MY workshop! My very FIRST workshop.
And, MAN, was I nervous… it it all turned out to be wonderful. :)

The workshop was part of the MasterWorks Show here in NM, you can see from the pictures, it took place right in the show space—surround by gorgeous art to inspire us. I had 12 students, which was the perfect size class for the day. Of course, 3/4 of them were members of my colored pencil group, people whom I knew, and knew me, well. I knew they were all there just to learn how I do what I do, so that  helped ease my nerves I think.

Me and my table FULL of supplies and examples

Here's my class, hard at work!

Friday, April 18, 2014

SCBWI-NM Illustrator's Meeting, April (Illustrator School Visits)

Last week we had our SCBWI-NM Illustrator's group meeting for April.

As usual, at 5pm we started with dinner and socializing at a local cafe.
(My "dinner" consisted of sweet potato fries and a black&white milkshake—yay for special occasions ;) 
Of course, I didn't get to socialize much since I had to sneak away for a quick discussion with SCNWI-NM volunteers (lots of planning to do!), but I got a few minutes in.

At 6pm, the illustrators headed over to Alamosa Books, where Alan Stacy lead a discussion with us about school visits.  Alan grew up in NM, moved to Texas for several years, and recently came back to us. He's been deeply involved with SCBWI for years, and we were so honored he chose to lead this discussion with us.

Alan started doing school visits before he was even published! He was an artist and illustrator, he knew what he wanted to do, and he found a way to get involved—ahead of the game.
He has several recommendations for illustrator school visits:

  • Be prepared, call ahead and make sure the school has any support material you may need: projector, mic, various supplies, YOUR BOOK (if you have one).
  • Find out how much time you have, how many presentations you'll be doing, and how many kids there will be. Talk to the teacher/s, make sure they know as much as possible so they can prepare the kids for your visit.
  • Be interactive—kids crave excitement and attention. You are a ROCK STAR to them, do activities, get them involved, ask them to think!
  • Don't be afraid of failing, you are going to fail! But each time you go for it, you'll gain experience and be better prepared for the next time.
  • Practice: in front of a mirror or with friend's kids. If you're still nervous, work up to it, start with a kid's day or story time at a local library.
  • For K-1st, props work… puppets! Be silly and funny!
  • Leave 10-15 minutes at the end of Q&A or Requests (if you're doing demos/drawing).
  • Have SWAG handouts: bookmarks, pins, etc.
  • Don't limit yourself—think out outside the school; senior groups, convention demos, there are many places to present and get your name out there.

One of our largest groups this year, we had 13 attendees!
Alan has a simple pamphlet with his bio, contact, and descriptions of his
presentations to promote himself for school visits.

That night's Schmooze was focused on SCBWI-NM—who are we as a chapter, where are we're heading, how we might best reach our very diverse membership (from authors and illustrators just starting out to those very well established in the field). 
ARA, Caroline Starr Rose led the discussion; RAE, Chris Eboch, gave us a local history of the group (she's been involved; RA, Linda Tripp, talked about some of the guidelines we have to abide by as part of SCBWI; and I, illustrator coordinator for the region, touched briefly on some of the recent illustrator events and activities. 
I think it served nicely to familiarize our group with our regional history and activities—but when the floor was opened to discussion, we really didn't get much feedback. 
SCBWI is something like 99% volunteer run, we as a group can only get as much out of it as we put into it! I love our local group and volunteers, and I encourage as many members a possible to get more involved. You want something to change, you want a particular event—we want to hear your ideas! Volunteer some of your time, work with us, and make things happen—it will benefit the entire group. :)

A VERY large gathering at Alamosa Books' Reading Room—full house!!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Illustration Friday: ZODIAC

So, this is a bit of a repeat, originally created and posted for Alphabeasts—but totally worth it because I love this piece and it totally applies to this weeks topic. I'm still planning to try do to a new zodiac piece (perhaps a Chinese zodiac, it is the year of the horse!).

Monday, April 07, 2014


Still collecting my random Instagram screen-captures and thinking it's about time I share another batch… only this time, I had a really hard time choosing a theme. There are so many inspirational photos uploaded everyday. I actually ended up collecting a few ideas (and saving some for later), so today I'll share images of (relatively) recent artist workspaces.

I love seeming photos of messy artist workspaces, and not only because it makes me feel less guilty about my own. I just love seeing how other artists work! Materials on the desk/drawing-table, splashes and spatters of paint, whether they stretch their paper or not, or just how many times they draw and re-draw one thing—maybe even how it eventually ends up. And BONUS, workspace images usually include new works-in-progress or a progression of these pieces!

So, here are workspaces from 4 artists I admire greatly: Gina Perry, Julissa Mora, Tony DiTerlizzi, and Cory Godbey. (Singled out because they post on Instagram, I follow them, and they recently posted images of their workspaces). Gina's space looks a lot like mine, cutting mat and all. I love that Julissa is mobile, I used to do that a lot more than I do now and I miss it. I think it's so wonderful that Tony shares works-in-progress as much as he does. I love calligraphy & lettering as well, and the behind-the-scenes of Cory's current project totally feeds that love—check out his Kickstarter to fund this amazing project, Tales from the Wilder Forest. I also enjoy seeing the mess-and-trial of traditional lettering combined with the digital end of putting it all together. And I'm jealous of his cats, I have no studio companions at the moment. :(

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Random ABQ (The First)

So, this is one of the reasons I love my town… the random "strange & wonderful" things that happen. This is a photo I shot the other night, walking down Central Avenue (main street ABQ for the out-of-towners), and there are a couple horses hitched up outside a bar, in the city center, and a movie shooting down the street—not connected to each other in any way, they were just there. Gotta love it.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

A Trip to the Zoo!

Yesterday, I was lucky enough to be invited to a special tour at the zoo. Our ABQ Zoo is a fairly small one, and I live quite close (I used to live about 3 blocks away, I miss those days!) and I wish I got over there more often than I do. I think I'm making it a mid-year resolution to go more often, right now.

It was a gorgeous spring day and I was with friends, it couldn't have been more perfect. Although I mainly took pictures this time around (I usually try to do some sketching while I'm there), it was one of the most rewarding and exciting trips to the zoo for me, EVER. But, I'm not suppose to discuss the details online… so too bad for you guys, but wonderful for me and my memories. LOL

Brothers Kiska and Koluk at Inukshuk Bay

My long lost family… look, it's me, the one that's as tall as all the others while sitting down!

Friday, March 28, 2014

The New Mexico Book Co-Op

I vaguely knew of the NM Book Co-Op before this meeting. It was something I heard mentioned or saw in e-newsletters—but this was the first time I've attended one of their meetings, and I was really impressed.
Okay, it was held at a local Golden Corral Restaurant, but I'd never been to one before and had little idea what to expect… it was kind of like a food theme park. LOL
The Co-Op had a private room for the meeting though, and once everyone had had a chance to eat and socialize for a bit, the meeting began. There was general news and open discussion, mostly about the Tucson Festival of Books. Apparently this is an amazing event—people that had attended only had wonderful things to say. I also got an earful about promoting your books in general—little did I know I'm supposed to have a box of my own books in the trunk of my car at all times (I have to admit, I've missed out on quite a few sales in the past year just because I was only carrying one copy of my book on me) and sell sheets.
The theme for the meeting was 'The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Book Signings'. Local authors Anne Hillerman and Don Bullis, plus local indie bookseller and 'author herder' Ollie Reed. They all had personal takes on the subject, the the overall messages were: be prepared, work/schmooze/SELL (don't just sit there and smile), find organizations and events that relate to your book–outside bookstores!, the more you say yes—the more contacts & connections you make, send out your own press releases, and oh yeah, BE PREPARED. ;)

Don Bullis, Anne Hillerman, and Ollie Reed talk about Book Signing Events
The upcoming meetings are on book sell sheets and book production—one of which I know nothing about and one of which I could actually contribute to the discussion. I am definitely looking forward to getting more involved with the Co-Op.

*I also entered my little picture book in the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards. Keeping my fingers crossed!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

MasterWorks of New Mexico: The Judge

What an honor to be asked to judge a Show that I've been involved with almost every year since I've been in New Mexico. I had the pleasure of going in and seeing all the accepted miniature work yesterday—then had to the challenging task of handing out awards.
Don't let anyone tell you it's easy to judge other people's work, it's not. Although, that being said, I think I may have had it a little easier than the larger works judge. Miniatures have strict rules & regulations against which to be juried into the show—I was a juror back in 2011, that's also a tough job! But the jurors did a fabulous job selecting deserving works to be included in this year's display.
There are 7 categories: Oil, Acrylic, Water Media, Drawing/Printing, Mixed Media, Colored Pencil and  Three-dimensional—each of which I had to award 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, plus 8 honorable mentions, one Best-In-Show, and several awards for excellence, detail, etc.
It was a daunting afternoon, but more than rewarding for the honored recipients—it was a rich and inspiring experience for me. I walked out of there brimming with ideas and motivation to push myself more in my own work, experiment, and perhaps even branch out into other media.

I'm looking forward to the reception next Friday, April 4th 5-8pm… and to the next year of ideas and experiments and new miniature work to come!

Signing documents while the show is hung.
p.s. I'm also teaching my first workshop during/at the show. It will focus on mixing colors, blending, and burnishing with colored pencil—specifically how these relate to working in miniature. I'm nervous and excited for it, wish me luck!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Illustration Friday: SPARK

Hey, so there didn't seem to be a new word from the folks at Illustration Friday this week, so I'm totally going to use this edited piece as my submission for SPARK. Ideas can come from the tiniest sparks of inspiration—keep an eye out and you'll see them everywhere!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Process: Personal Work

I recently finished this new piece as my assignment for the Austin SCBWI Conference. I signed up for the conference a bit too late to have completed the piece BEFORE the event, but art director Laurent Linn was kind enough to invite all attendees to submit a revised or new piece, via email, a few weeks after.

I've also been thinking about experimenting with my style, and this piece gave me the perfect opportunity to try some new ideas. Those of you that know, know I LOVE colored pencil. One of the biggest downsides to working with CP is the time it requires, especially in my chosen approach of burnishing (full paper coverage). I decided to try working at a smaller scale and enlarging my pencil work, to bring out the hidden textures in my usually ultra-smooth looking work.

Concept & character sketches. I didn't have a lot of time to really develop them as much as I would have liked, and I kept second-guessing myself… I eventually decided I just had to go with it and see what happened.
Background, completed separately. It's about 30% of the final size (70% reduced scale). The spot I pulled out isn't even 100%, but it gives you an better idea of the hidden texture that comes out with enlarging.
Characters are about 50% reduced scale. I'm naturally drawn to line work, but I hoping to incorporate the line work in future pieces in a fully digital way, as seen below.
I did single line drawings are random sizes and scaled them as needed to find a composition that worked for the story/piece. These are done in black colored pencil, which adds to the texture/grittiness of the line (although I'd like to try some regular graphite lines, just to see the difference). I them remove the white paper and digitally edit the line colors as needed (mainly via blending layers in photoshop).

So,what do you all think? I'm enjoying this direction, hope you are too!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

SCBWI-NM Illustrator's Meeting, March

Last night we had our third local SCBWI-NM Illustrator's group meeting of 2014!

At 5pm, we started with dinner and socializing at a local cafe. Our SCBWI Schmooze is held on the same night, so writers and illustrators got to mingle a bit while we noshed and hung out—it was quite the full-house. We're always adding tables to our tables as more people arrive. It was kind of a shame that we illustrators had to leave the party early, but it was worth it…

At 6pm, the illustrators headed across the parking lot, to local framing shop, FRAMED, where Scott Paden was ready to chat with us and answer questions about framing. Scott talked about some basics, old and new framing ideas, as well as ideas for framing pieces to sell vs. striaght-up neutral gallery framing. We talked about shoo sing matte colors—close but not too close (especially with whites/creams) and accenting with a bold colored double matte. Six illustrator members made it out for the evening.

Local illustrators soaking up the framing information.

Scott Paden, Artist, Designer, and Framer.

An awesome example of varieties of framing options for a single piece, from simple to excessively elaborate.

The Schmooze for the evening centered on Social Media, as introduced by local ember (and soon-to-published) Veronica Bartles. There are so many social media options out there, and the idea to keep in mind: you don't have to do it all. Look at the options and pick one or a few that work for you. Some of Veronica's favorites: Twitter (fast & easy way to connect to industry people + chats), as well as owning your own web presence (personal website), and blogging. She also highlighted the advantages/disadvantages of having a Facebook Author page vs. having a personal account.

Veronica Bartles discussing Social Media for authors and illustrators, at local bookstore, Alamosa Books.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Random Insta-Inspiration

For the last year or so, I'm been screen-capturing instragram photos I like and saving them in a folder I call Art&Inspiration. I can't say that I've gone back to look at the folder very much, but this week I did and I pulled out three, recently posted, quote-based images that stood out to me:

Wow. They all pretty much speak for themselves, but they each stood out for a different reason that resonates with me at this moment in my life.

Look at all the failure Abe Lincoln went through, over and over and over… and the man could not be kept down. That list is a great reminder for me, when I start to beat myself up about not being more successful at this or that or anything in my life right now.

I've also been working very hard to be more active and healthy, starting back in August 2013. I think I've finally found a nice balance of various practices and I can confidently say I'm in the best shape of my life. *I may never have a stomach like the one in the picture (I just like cookies and ice cream too much), but I've noticed the changes, ever so slowly, over these last 7 months—the good results DO come. Also, this philosophy applies to career goals as well, so… yeah—that too.

Lastly, there is nothing so important to me as my dreams. Big ideas. Something to strive for. And gorgeous calligraphy—that too. Just love that. ;)

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Guest Speaker: Illustration Media

My good friend, Neecy Twinem, teaches several illustration classes over at the Southwest University of Visual Arts (SUVA) here in Albuquerque—and I'm always happy to visit her classes when she asks me to come in and talk about colored pencils & illustration.

As usual, I packed up about 3 bags worth of supplies, samples, books, and finished pieces to share with the class. I discussed a few different methods of working with pencils, did a short demo, and talked a lot about how I got into pencils and developed a way of working with them that suited me (a lot of it was trial and error, luck of the draw, and timing).

I'm thinking about writing a post specifically about all this… sometime in the near future. For now, let me just say—I have used Prismacolor a lot in the past. I still have a rather large collection of Primacolor pencils… but these days I'm using mainly Caran d'Arche Luminance 6901 pencils—for three very important reasons:
One—they almost never break inside the barrel of the pencil. Prisma breaks often and easily, I've wasted whole pencils on breakage like that. 
Two—they do not bloom, there's not waxy white haze that forms over unsealed artwork that is heavily burnished.
Three—they have the best lightfast rating of any colored pencil on the market.  
 I'll see about putting together more posts about working with colored pencils… soon.

Friday, February 14, 2014

FaceTiming with an Awe Inspiring Artist

Fun little tidbit… today I got to FaceTime with my brother, the amazing painter, Sean Beavers. Being two busy creatives with multiple jobs, we rarely get to touch base… but today, of all days, it happened—making this one of my best Valentine's Days ever (really, they're generally never very good to me, LOL).
BroTime + PupTime
Golden Light, by Sean Beavers

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

MasterWorks Interview

After a few scheduling snafoos, the MasterWorks of New Mexico team was finally able to make it over to interview me, on camera (eeeeek!), as this year's Judge of the MasterWorks Miniatures Division. This is my first opportunity to be a judge for a show and I'm so honored to have been asked by MasterWorks. I've been submitting to this show since I moved out to New Mexico, and I'm extremely humbled to have received multiple awards (2009, 2010, 2011, 2013)  from them and served as a juror for the miniature division in 2012. 

I was quite nervous, I really don't like being the center of attention, but it went fast. I'm sure I'm not going to want to watch it… ever—but it was actually a pretty great experience, thanks to MasterWorks Mastermind, Barbara Lohbeck.

And, hey… New Mexico locals! I'm giving a colored pencil miniature workshop at the show in April. Check out the details here.

SCBWI-NM Illustrator's Meeting, February

Last night we had our second local SCBWI-NM Illustrator's group meeting of 2014!

At 5pm, as is the new norm—we started with dinner and socializing at a local cafe. Our SCBWI Schmooze is held on the same night, so writers and illustrators got to mingle a bit while we noshed and hung out. 

At 6pm, the illustrators headed over to one of local indie books stores, Alamosa Books, for our first official meeting of 2014. We had a night large group of 8 illustrators once again, and almost everyone had new work, a work-in-progress, or some topic of interest to discuss. We also had local author/illustrator, Neecy Twinem join us to lead a discussion about licensing basics—given her extensive experience with her own toy line, Zombie Zoo.

SCBWI-NM illustrator meeting at Lovely Alamosa Books

Neecy Twinem and her Zombie Zoo buddies!
We were having so much fun and had so much to talk about, we went right past our usual cut-off time of 7pm. Still, a few of us headed over to the monthly Schmooze meeting (about 45min late) across the parking lot at Alamosa's Reading Room where, SCBWI-NM member, Lee VanBrakle was giving a presentation on taxes for writers and illustrators. I personally, was very disappointed to have missed out on the bulk of the talk, so I stayed late pestering Lee with tons of questions (she very graciously put up with me). 

Whew, what a night!

Friday, February 07, 2014

New Postcard Promo!

(SCBWI Tomie dePaola Entry)

Hey! I'm heading to an SCBWI conference this weekend and I got a new postcard made for the occasion! I just happened to have a new piece, the one I made for SCBWI's Tomie dePaola contest.
See the Unofficial Gallery to look at other entires!

This is the whole piece, check out the assignment/prompt here.
It's a visual play on Hear no evil, See no evil, Speak no evil… which originates from Japanese folklore. So I took the work famous Snow Monkeys (Japanese Macaque) and instead of having anything to do with evil, they're just all sneezing… but only one of them is covering their mouth. I thought it was fun, and I'm happy with the piece overall. It also gave me a chance to test a new style—I worked smaller than actual size on this, and I went back in and added the line work (breezes and sneezes) digitally.

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Update: The SCBWI-NM Enchantment Show

Our local SCBWI Illustrator's group is doing a show this year, called Enchantment. It's a joint show with writers—several illustrators have completed and submitted pieces (loosely based on the theme of enchantment), which have been randomly assigned to local writers, who will write a one page story based on the image.

In May, all artwork and single page written works will be framed and hung together at one of our local libraries. I've decided to post my piece and my process so far. It's mostly done… but I'm still tinkering with it.

Initial concept, thumbnail sketch
Polly (polar bear) and Sunny (sun bear) meet in the middle of the ocean.

Monday, February 03, 2014

Process: Album Cover

Just finished up a project I started last year—an album cover for a local musical group. This was really fun and completely unlike my usual projects. It's nice to mix things up a bit from time to time.

Digital processes

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Re-Visiting The Last Unicorn

Yet another birthday surprise—a couple weeks ago, my friend Miranda announced that she was getting me tickets to see Peter S. Beagle (as if I need to mention, but I will—the legendary author of The Last Unicorn the book, and screen writer of The Last Unicorn movie) in Santa Fe at the end of the month. WHAAAAAT??!!!!

waiting in line to get in

So, while I did know that George R.R. Martin lived in Santa Fe, I did not know that he recently bought and revoted a small theatre there, the Jean Cocteau Cinema. It's a really cool place, small and intimate—and they have amazing events.

This one was so cool, George R.R. Martin basically interviewed Peter S. Beagle, on stage. It was a lovely, informal conversation between two greats. We heard all kinds of behind the scenes tidbits—like how Peter started The Last Unicorn years before going back and finishing it (a version of the original manuscript will be released soon), how Peter didn't know where the unicorns where for most of the writing of the book, and how George had approached Peter to write for the TV show Beauty and the Beast—and Peter turned him down! And, exciting news—they're planning a live-action movie! After the talk, the showed a remaster version of the animated movie.

I gotta say, I thought it was going to be cool, but damn if I didn't turn into a complete fangirl once I was there.
George and Peter chat on stage