Wednesday, August 26, 2015


When I first read the word of the week on Illustration Friday, People, there was Barbra Streisand's voice in my head singing "People who neeeed people...". My brain is very random that way. I then tried to get the song unstuck from my head and brainstorm. This is a word that has many possibilities, but I decided to use it on a sketchbook exercise that I learned a few years ago from a book by Carla Sondheim called Drawing Lab . The challenge is to make light marks and scribbles on your paper, and then look closely at them to see what can be made from the shapes- sort of like looking at clouds and spotting a rabbit or a ship. I took the assignment a step further this time by looking to see how all of the shapes could be faces and then added details. When I can't think of what to draw or I just need to kill time waiting somewhere, this is always a great way to get the creative juices flowing- and maybe even come up with a new character.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


The word of the week on IF, Pointy, gives me the perfect excuse to show an excerpt from the picture book dummy I am working on, POP!, about little porcupine's bad luck of having several "pointy" things pop his balloons. On his third attempt the porcupine, Quill, thinks he is quite lucky to get a special jumbo size balloon until he has to try and fit it through his tiny door:

But his door isn't the real threat to his balloon:

It's this:

Tuesday, August 4, 2015


There are so many possibilities for the word of the week on IF, but the first thing to come out of the doodles in my sketchbook was this little character with wild hair. I've just had a haircut, but I usually let it grow so long that it starts to feel a little like this guy's! I also gave him a book to show growth on an internal level, because I think that reading is one of the best ways we can grow to become more empathetic human beings.

It's a simple little drawing, but for me it was important because it is the first time I have sat down to draw in several weeks after having had a difficult summer losing both a dear friend and an aunt with whom I was very close to cancer within a few weeks of each other. My friend Nancy loved my work, and always told me that this piece I illustrated of her as a girl with her father outside their family restaurant was the best gift she ever received. My aunt was very encouraging to me as an aspiring artist and always kept her eyes peeled for opportunities that would give exposure to my work. While going through boxes of things cleared from her home I discovered that she had saved all of my drawings from the time I could pick up a crayon, down to the tiniest doodles on scraps of paper. I know they both wished me success in my goals to become a published author/illustrator, and I'm ready now to dive back into my work and make that happen.