Accidental people

This is an assignment from a Carla Sonheim class. This was my first one of this project and I have some postcards cut to do more when I am sitting by the TV. I am actually trying to get OUT of the studio more, believe it or not. This assignment is all random and you really don’t plan it, you just go with it and use what ever you have on hand.

Little dog & Owls

I started to play with drawing bulldogs but this little guy happened instead. The whole drawing was “accidental.” Sometimes the pencil has a mind of its own.

Our screech owls are back and the palm tree they used last January fell over during the summer. It was dead for a while but we didn’t remove it because the owls were using it.

John made the owls an nesting box and put it in a safer tree for them. Now we wait to see if they use it. We called the wildlife folks to ask where the best spot was and this is what they suggested. Keeping fingers crossed. I can hear them outside right now.

PS…it is “winter” in Florida right now and this tree loses it leaves every year. They don’t change color, they just fall off.

A page spread develops – artistic process

These are my sketches for a page spread that I am doing for my children’s book course. I had a ton of ideas and I did a bunch of thumbnails, but I opted for the simplest design in order not to get frustrated, and could complete it within the time frame allotted. Advice that I received from Koosje Koene many moons ago…. Keep It Simple Stupid, and that’s what I did.

I didn’t realize I had to include text, too. I added that at the end.

My scene will have seagulls. I have tons of reference photos that I have taken over the years…and I took more to ensure I had enough poses. Seagulls are easy for me since I have sketched them so many times before. My favorites are laughing gulls and they are all over the place here so that was a no brainer for me. I think there are laughing gulls in half of my sketchbooks.

These are my process sketches on how I developed my page spread:

Thumbnail…which you will probably look at and say “Whhhhaaaatt?” Yes, this thumbnail led to the following sketches:

Below is the next stage. They don’t quite look like seagulls, do they? I put notes about where to look for my references…I actually had to go in and find all my seagull photos that I have taken over the years and name the photos so I could find them easier. I really need to do a better job organizing the photos I take with my iPhone.

Here is my draft. I sketched the gulls in pencil on vellum so that I can erase easier. Those two lines in the middle are the “gutter” where the page will be split for binding so I have to allow for that. I transferred this image to two 9×12 mixed media sheets of paper so that I can scan the final product on my scanner. I will show the final on tomorrow’s post.

The Zen of Kitty

September is almost over and Halloween is coming. My mom is a big lover of all things Halloween, horror, etc. she grew up reading horror comics and is still addicted to that genre.

It takes about two mailing days for my mom to get her cards that I mail. I always have to allow for that two day buffer when I want something delivered by a specific day.

That said, October 1st is Monday. OMG! Already? Yep. Since my mom loves Halloween so much, I am starting the Halloween cats tomorrow so that she receives the first one Monday and she’ll get a daily Halloween themed kitty until after the Day of the Dead.

So for all of you macabre, horror, gothic and Halloween fans out there, you’re in for a treat!

Today’s kitty

The technique I used for this kitty is a mixture of ink and pencil. It was demo’d in Carla Sonheim’s 365 workshop of prompts. We used the technique with chicken sketches but I aksi used it for this kitty and a 5 minute Sktchy portrait.

I’ve included all of the sketches here. I really liked doing the chicken sketches, they are a lot of fun.

Enjoy!

Aura kitty

This kitty is totally by chance. I used a thick brush of gesso to paint a kitty on white paper. The interior of that white gesso’d kitty is the final orangey kitty that you see here.

Update on my mom:

She looks forward to these cards that I send her. When I am on the phone with her, she talks about them. She makes up stories about them. She compares them to her cats. Mailing her these cards is helping her in a way because she has a connection with them. She says when she’s feeling sad, she looks through her book of cats. Dementia can be hard on the patient and it’s little things like these cats that make all the difference.