animals, fantasy illustration, Holidays, Illustrations, kids, Revising Old Work

Dear Santa, a letter from a snow-globe

I designed this image a few years ago and I revised it a little lately, only changing the font.  I want to start building a small collection of my favorite designs I’ve done for the holidays.  I don’t really remember how I did this but looking at it today, it’s pretty cool.  Since I was without a computer for a few years, lots of strange things happened and pieces of my life went up in smoke.   I’m making a collection on this blog of rescued work because these drawings involved were substantial and I believe they are worth saving.

I think it makes a good Christmas card but I also like it on a kids’ t-shirt. check it out.

This is the first time in years that I’ve had more than a minute to catch up and breathe. I can now enjoy my art and I don’t have to put up a fight to allow it to just …be.  I don’t know where all this will lead, but it is helping me adjust to my new life here in Mexico.snowglobe-dearsanta-web

 

fantasy illustration, Holidays, Illustrations, kids

A little girl visits a pumpkin patch

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This little girl is a watercolor and she is on her own in Pumpkinville.  She brought a few miniature jack-o-lanterns with her to the fall party.  She was surprised to see lots of blue cats everywhere.  My goodness, what a creative thinker she is to explore this territory all by herself.

I decided to edit the painting digitally and present it as a circle.  It has an old fashioned quality to me and I thought that there is enough fantasy here to play a little.

Here is the image on products.  

 

alphabet, fantasy illustration, fonts, Holidays, Illustrations, kids, Odd Little Stories, scratchboard drawing, simple photoshop, thoughts behind the work

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary with text

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From the nursery rhyme the 1st paragraph of Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary is illustrated here. This painting is a digital drawing and painting of my own idea. I have tried to use colors and text that engage a nostalgic mood. Mary, Mary was quite the contrary miss, I think.

What started out as a cool idea and something nice to do on a quiet Sunday ended up being a 6 hour project….from the idea to the photoshop drawing and painting to the addition of text.  I made 2 versions, one with text and one without.  I ended up only listing the one version with text online.

What can I say except I love drawing like this and playing with text.  When I moved from the U.S. I left all my fabulous books and films behind.  For 40+ years, I had collected “primers” which in my collection, dated back to the 1880’s.

They were old beautiful books that I treasured and cherished. Primers were children’s elementary readers.  Heads up on this one.  The vocabulary, language in general was very sophisticated and advanced.  I had a 5th grade reader which was equivalent to what would now be 1st year high school.  There was no photography and dot printing had not been invented yet.  So all the art was line art only.  That is where I learned the fundamentals of drawing in grey scale by not using grey scale but using line art and the idea that drawing was an optical illusion.  The width of the lines conveyed the tonal values.  That led to my 30 years of drawing in scratchboard. I drew for over 25 years only in black and white and I am not ashamed to say it.  I also learned about scale from primers.  Think about this:  Convey a mountain with a few people on top of it…don’t forget to include the clouds, the weather, the country, etc etc .then ask yourself if it conveys a mood as well as giving all that info?  The  storyboard was alive at the turn of the century for sure.  All the rules and success of animation are in the old primers.

All of these principles have basically never changed.  You become a better artist when you learn digital media because basically art is science.  Photoshop and Illustrator are basically science and math is your friend.  After one month of working hard and trying to remember my old skills, they are coming back.  Now that I have the desire to use typography, this is just another icing on the cake.

Here is a product with this 100% digital art.

 

Holidays, people

Day of the Dead watercolor

This is my newest watercolor of the most exciting days to come here in Mexico. It will be happening soon and I can’t wait.
click the picture to purchase prints on paper and textilesDay-of-Dead-family-th

For a painter, I can’t think of a more colorful subject matter than dia de los muertos. Creativity abounds when everyday people take pleasure in the celebration of this most wonderful holiday.  I think their body language shows the love and care they have for each other and the joy of these special days.

Day of the Dead (known as Día de Muertos in Spanish) is celebrated in Mexico between October 31st and November 2nd. On this holiday, Mexicans remember and honor their deceased loved ones. It’s not a gloomy or morbid occasion, rather it is a festive and colorful holiday celebrating the lives of those who have passed on. Mexicans visit cemeteries, decorate the graves and spend time there, in the presence of their deceased friends and family members. They also make elaborately decorated altars  (called ofrendas) in their homes to welcome the spirits.
The belief behind Day of the Dead practices is that spirits return to the world of the living for one day of the year to be with their families. It is said that the spirits of babies and children who have died (called angelitos, “little angels”) arrive on October 31st at midnight, spend an entire day with their families and then leave. Adults come the following day.

Thanks Vikki Rennick for your photo that was the inspiration for this artwork.

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