Friday, July 30, 2010

Sketching Topiaries

As I bring the kids to camp each day, I pass by some odd topiaries. They caught my eye each and every day, so I was inspired to play with them a bit. I have no patience for maintaining actual topiary plants, but their form and shape are fun to play with in pencil. I may continue this, maybe paint a few. I'm even inspired to make a repeat pattern with them. We'll see.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The City Museum in St. Louis

The City Museum in St. Louis is the most amazing place! It's not really a museum, it's an adventure! It's a converted old warehouse with something to see every which way you look. The kids LOVE it and so do I. There is so much art built into every surface. The mosaics alone are to die for. On weekends, it turns into a nightclub. You must visit if you get the chance!

Texture & Pattern are everywhere!

View of the front of the museum
This is the fence surrounding the museum
You can climb up the tower to the planes
Another view of the exterior climbing area

Climbing up to the first plane. See that bus? We went in it!

Gorgeous ground floor. There are climbing tubes in the ceiling, the walls, & under the floor.

Exit of one of the ground floor tubes.

One of the many climbing structures between floors.
Looking down at the ground floor. See the slide at the top?
In one of the caves.
Ferris wheel on the roof.
Inside the bus that hangs off of the edge, 10 stories up. Gulp.
One of many sculptures on the roof.
Rooftop fountain.
There were two slides on the roof.

Friday, July 23, 2010

WIP-Testing a new paint and technique

As I've mentioned before, I'm feeling a big change coming in my artwork. Instead of worrying about it or trying to stop it, I'm just accepting it. Wondering what it will bring. To help the process along, I'm trying out all sorts of new ways of doing things. I love working with pencil. A brush has never really felt completely comfortable in my hand the way pencils do.

For this experiment, I borrowed some matte acrylic paints from my very generous Twitter friend, Tracy Bishop. She's always got an answer to any question. I'm newly inspired every time I talk or tweet with her. When this painting is finished, I'll go over it with color pencils. I'm really crossing my fingers that this will give me the effect I'm hoping for. Laying down such rich color with paint will speed things up tremendously.

Another new thing about this piece is that it's being created in layers. The main character in the scene will be painted on a separate layer. My little guy thought it would be cool to animate the boy flying across the landscape in his plane. Love that!

I'll keep you posted. What are you working on?

Friday, July 16, 2010

Just a bit of fun sketching

This is part of a goofy series of kid Super Heroes based on healthy food (yawn). I'm just having a little fun.
Here is Carrot Girl who has x-ray vision from eating so many carrots.

This is Bean Boy, able to leap tall buildings with a single fart. I couldn't resist, sorry. I live in a house of boys, they of course, love this guy.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Illustration Friday - Diary

What's Bronte's deepest, darkest secret that she keeps locked away in her diary? She's dreams of becoming a ballerina!

I'm currently doing a lot of experimenting. I feel big changes coming, but I don't really have any idea what they'll be. It's a very uncomfortable place to be, but a necessary part of the creative life. Thank goodness I have my creative peeps over on Twitter to help me out and inspire me. If you're not on Twitter yet, come join us, it's lots of fun! You can follow me at @CreativeGirl.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sketching with blue

I forgot to share this sketch, before the final. I love it. I've wanted to try out sketching with a blue pencil for awhile now. I love it!!!! I can't wait to sketch some more.

Friday, July 9, 2010


This is something I'm experimenting with. You may have seen the earlier version here. I was never happy with it. Here's the newest version. Not sure if it's quite what I was hoping for.

As artists, we all continue to push ourselves towards something indefinable. Sometimes this process is just a natural progression. Other times is a lingering feeling of dissatisfaction and discomfort. A feeling that something's just not quite right. A desire for change. A sense of boredom in doing the same old same old. I've felt this a lot lately. I feel like I've done as much as I can in my current style. Part of it is practical, color pencil is a slow process. Part of it is feeling that I want to loosen up more. Lose control a bit. I'm just in the beginning of this process and I have no idea where it's going. It's a very uncomfortable place to be, but it's a necessary part of the creative process. One of the advantages of not having "made it" yet, is that I'm not locked into anything. I'm taking full advantage of this.

What is this experience been like for you?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Illustration Friday - Giant

This is an old one, but still one of my favorites. She's baking a cake for her giant friend. Below is a detail of it.

What I've been up to

I've gone a little Ripple crazy. Thank goodness it's for a great cause. Above is the Junk A Doodle I got from one of my favorite illustrators, Holli Conger. So love this!

This beautiful print is by Christina Rodriguez. Scrumptious!

When Devon of Devon Industry posted this painting on her blog I wanted it badly. I suggested she list a print of it in her Etsy shop and she did, so now it's mine. She's one of my Twitter pals. Love her work!

I'm working on my marketing and promotions this week. I'm ready to up my game. Here's a little sketch I drew last night. I love how ideas seem to come out of nowhere. I've never thought of a dinosaur who's into ballet, but here it is.

This is the Amy Butler Barcelona skirt I finished right before vacation. I used her home dec fabric, too. I love how it feels like it has more structure because of the fabric weight. It's also fully lined! I altered it a bit. There's one whole tier missing. Since I didn't take notes while I made it, I may not be able to repeat it. Oh well.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Summer Swimming in St. Louis & Bass Pro in Springfield

We had a wonderful vacation. I always feel like I'm home when I'm in St. Louis. The kids feel it too. They love being surrounded by cousins.

The city pools are amazing in the counties. Part water park, part swimming pools. We spent a lot of time at the two near my aunt's place.

One Friday night, we swam for a few hours, went home for dinner, & came back for a poolside showing of Madagascar 2. Such fun. Swimming at night isn't possible in Northern California (too cold at night), but in St. Louis that's not a problem.

I had the pleasure of meeting another Twitter friend, Lynn Alpert aka @RedStepchild. We had a great lunch and talk. Gotta love Twitter.

My kids got their first taste of driving at my cousin's farm in Illinois. I'm in trouble now.

They also got into golf there. I'm hoping that someday, they'll play golf with there dad.

While visiting my cousin in Springfield, we checked out Bass Pro Shops. All I can say is WOW! Words cannot describe the place. You just have to experience it for yourself. They even had an alligator inside.

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