It’s December….Again

December is such a busy month and I scratch my head when art challenges pop up for December. Especially when the list hits right before the start date so that you can’t prepare ahead of time. It almost seems sadistic.

Getting off my soapbox….Shannon McNab’s “Daily Sketch Challenge” prompts for December are very helpful and she encourages not spending a lot of time overthinking them but to use the daily prompt for inspiration to illustrate an idea. She is correct when she says if you were looking to create illustrations or art for the holiday season, there’s no better time to do it than during this season.

Christmas is the time of year when you feel the season in so many different ways…the festivities, the food, the visual celebrations of lights and decor, the music, TV specials and ironically, even the stress could be a source of inspiration. Watching Hallmark Christmas movies or listening to holiday music in July doesn’t really capture the moment or ambiance like the living in the season does for providing inspiration to create holiday art.

I discovered another prompt list called Carve December (that I need like a hole in the head) that I could probably incorporate with the Shannon McNab’s list. I am really excited about Carve December because carving stamps and having inspiration to do them is making me very happy. Stamp carving is fun and relaxing and I can do so much with my own stamps in my creations. I have already found that they make cute little gift tags.

Here is my Daily Sketch Challenge and my CarveDecember print.

On a side note, I need to pick up a red ink pad. This one leans toward pink.

Lili’s Christmas Parka

Absence

Absence 

You were the last thing

we wanted

You came to us

on a warm summer evening

Tiny and sick

dark as the night

We took you in

and you grew on us

You thought you were

a chihuahua

You ingratiated yourself

into our hearts

Soft and silky

svelte and lanky

A queen in your own right

Gardening with your company

Birds and mice brought

into the house 

There were those times

we pulled our hair out

You ate almost  

 a whole cake

But we loved you

You went to Florida 

with Erin

a companion and

a friend 

We enjoyed your company

during lockdown

Then one tragic day

you fell ill

No vet could save you

You were only five

We didn’t want you 

to go

But we had to let you

We feel your loss

every day.

Little Witch (on the side)

I did work a little on my little witch series while doing the “TheyDrawtober Challenge.” The food challenge took up more time than expected, and I wound up doing that challenge on Procreate and as you can see from last month’s posts.

In the meantime, monsters, witches and other beasties were sidelined. I have been debating on posting them in November, or holding off on them for now. Although it isn’t October, it is still before Thanksgiving, so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to post a few fall themed sketches and maybe a monster here or there. There will be time enough for holiday posts after Thanksgiving.

Those of you who follow my Little Witch series might remember that Cleopatra (aka Kitty) passed away last year of an unknown neurological event right before Inktober. We were all grief stricken and it was hard for me to put a kitty in the series last year.

This year, there are two new grandkitties that my daughter adopted. Plus my son also has a diabolical kitty that I could add so kitties will be making a comeback. Cleo was found by my husband and I and was the family kitty even though she came here to Florida with my daughter. We all still miss Cleo.

So back to the story….

The Litttle Witch made some caramel apples. She put one out to have as a snack, and to see how they taste before packaging them up as gifts. However, the Dragonet and Toffee, the muted tortie kitty, have other ideas.

This sketch was done on Arches text wove paper in my refillable Innovative Journal . It’s black leather with skull beads. Really cool!

Moon And Stars Kittie

This is another pattern that I created on my IPad from the sketch I did for the other stuffed kitty. I changed the kitty to have a hat and swapped the pumpkin for a moon. However, I had to changed some things on the fly and and I still may have to tweak the next one.

Day off from Friendly Faces

There is no Friendly Faces prompt for Sundays but I have been working on a side project in between everything else.

I made this sketchbook from felt and I stitched it together yesterday. I have been learning some new and really cool bookbinding techniques and I love this stitch much better than the long stitch.

Love gives you wings

These creatures came from sketches done in my morning pages. They started out as a random shape, that I move around until I find something I can work with in that shape, and then pull a creature out of it.

Wally the owl is obsessed with hearts and loves Valentine’s Day. He loves hearts decorated on everything, including his food. Wally is afraid to fly.

This is Corky the Cupid Kitty. Corky has a very important task to do for Valentine’s Day.

If he could only remember what that task is…

Happy Valentine’s Day

I have been working on a few Valentine’s Day projects. One of those projects was felt patterns I found by Alison Kaplan.

I used to love to cross stitch and I had made so many things with cross stitch when I was in my 20’s. I still hang my hand stitched ornaments on my Christmas tree but for some reason, a needle and thread were something I have tried to avoid for many, many years. I have tons of cross stitch books with patterns and I have three DMC floss containers that were stored away. I don’t remember why I put a project away and never went back to it.

Then I found instructions for making a felt mouse and fox. I was surprised that I had everything I needed to do these projects except for the felt. I definitely had the DMC floss! To make these projects my own, I made them Valentine themed.

I cut out the felt and started sewing. Before I knew it, these two guys were complete. I even tried some embroidery going as far as using You Tube to research stitches. I really surprised myself with this project.

But could I make my own pattern? Why not? So I made a kitty pattern and then made my mom a kitty and mailed it to her as a Valentine’s gift. (Update on mom, she’s had her Covid vaccinations.)

Then I thought, ooooooh, what if I made a kitty with different colored ears and a heart shaped patch around an eye? I finished this one and gave it to my daughter as a Valentine’s present and even made pockets on the dress to tuck things into, like chocolate.

I have many more ideas for these little guys that are also influencing my 2d work. I really enjoyed making my own patterns and have ideas for more creatures, including dogs. I found that doing these were very relaxing and Mindful.

Christmas Art Countdown Day 14

The prompt is “sing” and every time I see the word “sing,” I think of the New Year’s Eve performance of My Chemical Romance. Maybe we all need to sing, for the WHOLE WORLD. Sing it from the heart, sing for the planet, sing for all species, sing for the whales and the manatees, sing for the polar bears and the tigers, sing for all endangered species…sing for clean water, sing for the babies of all species who are born on an ailing planet. Sing for resolution of climate change, sing for our future, sing for peace, sing for love…..sing for all these things.

Just sing…..