Constellation Collection, Half Complete (so far)

I’ll admit, I have a very short attention span when it comes to painting. It’s how I knew early on I would never make comics; whenever I tried, I could never get past 15 pages or so. Always, after I’ve made a dent into a project, I get restless and have to switch to something else, probably painted in a different medium to boot.

So, I decided to challenge myself- 12 paintings, done in a relatively timely fashion, with one theme, and stylistically cohesive. Definitely a difficult task!

Well, here I am, half way through! I can feel some creeping restlessness, but I’m also excited to tackle the next constellation (Libra, for all you scale signs out there). Here are the first six signs:

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Aries, the Ram
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Taurus, the Bull
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Gemini, the Twins
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Cancer, the Crab
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Leo, the Lion
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Virgo, the Virgin

As you could probably tell from the in-progress pictures I’ve been posting for the last few weeks, these guys were all painted in black ink, my favorite thing lately. That definitely makes it easier to keep going! Hopefully I’ll be posting the second set soon. In the meantime, keep an eye out for more progress photos!

Send In The Hounds

After a post dedicated to cats, I decided it was time to let the dogs have their day in the sun. On my desk, at least.

As much as I love drawing highly stylized, brightly colored animals, I also want to get better at drawing them a bit more realistically. I guess these guys are still very stylized, but not as much as, say, here. I decided to tackle smaller dogs, but I’d like to try drawing bigger dogs in the future as well. Maybe a greyhound or Irish setter. Or a St. Bernard.

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First up is a Pembroke Corgi, based loosely on one of my parents’ dogs (yes, I am lucky enough to get to hang out with a pair of corgis when I visit my family, as if visiting family wasn’t awesome enough already). I love their oversized ears! For the longest time my drawing didn’t look right, until I made the ears bigger than I thought realistic. But that’s exactly what he needed, larger-than-life ears!

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Second, a Pekingese. I am a huge fan of these little guys, with their flowing locks and little waddling steps. In my opinion, they have one of the greatest origin stories for a breed of dogs- they were bred to look like Chinese lions, and would be kept hidden in peoples’ sleeves, ready to jump out and bite anyone wicked!

frenchbulldog_smallThird is an adorable little French bulldog pup. I don’t know much about these guys, other than the fact that they’re pretty stinkin’ cute.

I’m hoping to use these guys in an upcoming project, so hopefully I’ll have more doggy things to share soon!

Usagi Bugeisha

You guys, I am so excited for the new Sailor Moon show coming out in July. A few copies of my little sister’s sailor moon comics were my first introduction to manga, and are what got me interested in art in the first place. I even dreamed of being a comic artist for a while! I’m sure if I looked around, I could find some of my old comics, but I’m not sure if I want to. Anyway, I’ll be at the Sailor Moon tribute show in Anaheim with bells on. Even though I’m not participating, I thought it would be nice to do my own tribute to Usagi and the series that got me started.

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Sailor Moon as an Onna bugeisha, or female samurai. I went back a little later and added some gold accents. She’s completely painted in ink, with a few gouache touch-ups. The more freedom I give myself to mix colors, the easier painting with ink becomes. I wanted to emulate some of the lines and shapes found in old woodblock prints of warriors.

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Edit: I’ve had a few inquiries, so I’ve made the original painting and prints available in my Etsy shop.

 

 

Team Sansa

I, like so many others, am a big fan of Game of Thrones. But unlike a lot of those fans, I kinda love Sansa. Hell, I could see her maybe possibly even winning this whole thing.

What I love about Sansa is her innate humanness. She makes very human choices, and makes very human mistakes. Whenever people talk about their favorite characters, or who they would be in the GoT universe, everyone thinks they would be Arya, or Tyrion; a total badass. But I bet that if many of us were thrown into this chaotic world, we would flounder a bit, and need some time to get our footing. And maybe never be that great at playing the game. Like Sansa.

Because of her humanness, Sansa is one of my favorite characters to draw. She has been dealt such a bad hand in life. Yesterday I finished a painting of her; it’s really a speculative piece, and who knows if it’ll ever happen. I have a feeling it will though. After being away for so long, Sansa will eventually return home to Winterfell, only to find that her home is no longer there.

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Just a Reminder for You Slueths Out There!

The Gallery 1988/HelloGiggles “Young Adult” show opens on Saturday, and I have a piece in it! The HelloGiggles site has a small preview of a few pieces.

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Mystery of the Moss Covered Mansion

Here’s a in progress/detail pic:

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I’m seriously looking forward to the opening! The subject matter is right up my alley, and I think it’s pretty cool to see a celebration of female artists and the books we grew up on.

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Dream Big, Nancy

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I feel bad for Bess. She is not the brightest bulb in the Nancy Drew character chandelier. I love Ned’s casual sexism. Let’s face it dude, you may have the college education, but Nancy is way more likely to make it to outer space. Probably as a thank you for finding Richard Branson’s diamond encrusted lobster or something.

Anyway…

a painting!

marceline!

My finished Marceline, Vampire Queen. That hair is definitely my favorite part. I imagine her hair would sort of float behind her, as if she were under water.

I wasn’t able to scan her until today, because I’ve started doubling up paintings on my giant watercolor paper block.

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Okay, maybe it’s not so big to some of you (14″x20″), but I tend to never paint any bigger than 9″x12″, so there. I’ll post my Nancy Drew painting in a few days; but I’d like to let you all know now about the show it’ll be part of- Gallery 1988’s ‘Young Adult‘ show, presented with the super cute HelloGiggles. I’m excited to see the show when it opens. I think it’s pretty interesting that with all the books provided to choose from, so many artists went with Nancy Drew. Just goes to show how beloved and iconic she is, I guess.

A Field Trip, and a Painting

Did you know that the Beverly Hills library has a mini gallery of original paintings? I sure didn’t!

I wish I could tell you who the first two were by, but I didn’t do my usual decent job of recording just what exactly I was taking pictures of. I can tell you though, that the third image is of a Chris Van Allsburg gouache painting. Oh yeah, that ain’t ink, my friends. He painted all those lines. And this painting is small, like 7×10″ tops. Totally crazy.

Anyway, my library field trip was a success, and I went back home to kick myself in the butt for not painting as much lately as I should. It may be kind of a mean thing to say, but living in LA and being surrounded by creative types who have had to settle for more mundane careers is simultaneously scary, sad, and invigorating. It’s a constant reminder that I shouldn’t get too comfortable in my retail position.

So I painted a sort of test run for a series I’m about to start working on, just to get an idea of the ink to gouache ratio I want, as well as the mood and color palette.

Did you know that if you mix sumi ink and acrylic ink, the sumi ink will not like it at all and start to congeal? The more you know!

It’s not super great, but I think it’s a good reintroduction to the kinds of paintings I was doing before, and want to keep doing.

My favorite part is the bird you can see in the distance through the trees.