Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Illustration Friday Week 4

I'm back for another edition of Illustration Friday challenge.  This week's word is "rock."

The first thing that automatically came to mind was rock, paper, scissors.  And then I thought of rock and roll and sooooooo.....that is what I went with and came up with this.

Here is my rough draft.

 Then I colored it.

Added some finishing touches and Voila....."Rock" was created.

This concludes this edition of Illustration Friday challenge.  I hope to see you back next week.  

See what I did for the other Illustration Friday Challenges:

Illustration Friday Challenge Week One-

Illustration Friday Challenge Week 2-

Illustration Friday Challenge Week 3-

Until then, I'm back at the drawing board.!

Monday, December 19, 2016

New Postcards

In my earlier post, "Illustrations for my New Postcard", I talked about how I created a new illustrator postcard because my first postcard for mailing was a fail.  Anyway,   I mentioned I would show you what they looked like when they came in.  So drum roll please...............................

Of course I cut the bottom off when I took the picture but, that's okay because I do not want to display my phone number on my blog.   I decided to keep the back of the postcard blank.    

I'm very pleased with them and now it's time to get my illustrator postcards in the mail in hopes of finding an agent.   

I will keep you posted on my journey in becoming a published children's illustrator.  

Until then...It's back at the drawing board for me. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Illustration Friday Week 3

This week's topic for Illustration Friday is, "Spiral."

My first idea was to do an overhead illustration of a sink and garbage disposal with veggies going down the disposal in a spiral fashion.  It looked like this:

I nixed that idea because I just done veggies in my illustration for the "Soup" topic last week. 

So I opened up GIMP and created this background.  Well, that was quite boring so of course I had to add something to it.  I can't just have a spiral background.

I then thought of this cute hippo holding a spiral lollipop.

I colored it in GIMP and made a transparent background.  

Then it was off to PICMONKEY and I added my hippo as an overlay and put some finishing touches  on it and VIOLA.... The spiral Hippo was completed.   

So this has been another edition of the Illustration Friday challenge.  I'm pleased with what I created. 

See what I did for the other Illustration Friday Challenges:

Illustration Friday Challenge Week One-

Illustration Friday Challenge Week 2-

Until the next time it's back to the drawing board for me....

Monday, December 12, 2016

Creating my First GIF

I had fun creating my first GIF with my character Timby.  I just wanted to do a simple GIF to put on my blog and website.

So I came up with these rough sketches:  I wanted Timby to appear dancing.

And here they are with color:

After I colored/photographed them, I edited my illustrations in PICMONKEY and decided to keep the background dark so you could see the snow I added.  

Then I opened the images in GIMP.  For those of you who don't know what GIMP is, it is a cross platform image editor.  They say you can do wonderful things in GIMP that are comparable to Photoshop.  I'm not sure about that because one I am still learning GIMP and two I've never worked with Photoshop.

Anyway, this is how it came out.   

For me, it ended up being too dark.  I did not like it, it looked too mechanical or something.  So then I decided I wanted to make my background transparent but, I just couldn't get it to work right. I still have lots to learn in GIMP. Thank goodness for YouTube and all those wonderful artists out there who post their videos.

Anyway, I ended up painting my background white using GIMP and came up with this one.

I like the look of the image better with a white background but, I still think it would look even better without a background.  I'm thinking with a transparent background it would look more like an animation.  I will definitely try it on my next one.  My goal is to create an animation with one of my characters.    

Until then...It's back at the drawing board for me!


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Illustration Friday Week 2 (Soup)

This is the second week I entered an illustration for the Illustration Friday challenge.  This week's topic is "soup."

Here is my rough draft done in pencil, pen and ink.

I did not like how the tongue looked so I got rid of it.  I opened my picture in GIMP and got rid of sea creature coming out of his mouth and added teeth.  This illustration was then digitally colored.
I must admit this was the first time I digitally colored and I enjoyed it.  I'm not ready to go digital all the time but every now and then...I think that would be fine.

The blue one below was my original that I submitted but once I downloaded it, you couldn't see my carrot, chicken and celery very good.  I went back in and lightened the background.

As I stated in my previous post entitled, "Illustration Block" I started this challenge last week and I absolutely love it!   It not only keeps me drawing but it stimulates my creative mind....And I can tell you, I definitely need that.  

I can't wait to see what the new topic is for next week.  

See what I did for my first Illustration Friday Challenge here.

Until then...It's back at the drawing board for me.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Illustrations For My New Postcard

If you read my previous post, "My Illustrator Postcard" then you know I had some format difficulties on the back of the card.  I did not leave any room for whom I would be sending the card to.

So I went back to the drawing board and started over to create a new illustrator postcard.

Here are some rough sketches I came up with for the front of my card.

I felt it was lacking a character by the turkey so I added a squirrel eating pudding.  I then thought how hard it must be to carry those full bowls and not spill. Well, as you can see it was very hard for them...

Here is my rough sketch for the back.  I even used those leaves as reference.  

And finally, my finished pieces.  The theme for my postcard is fall.  

Now, I will send it in to get printed and once I get it back I will post it so you can all see a my completed illustrator postcard.

Until then, it's time to get back to the drawing board! 

Come back real soon and most importantly keep drawing.    

Monday, November 28, 2016

Illustration Block

Okay, so, writers get writer's block so would illustrators get illustration block? Or maybe a better word is creative block? No, I like illustration block. Not really sure if that's even a real word but it's my word. Like writer's block, there are times when I sit at my drawing board staring at a blank piece of paper and wondering what the heck am I going to draw?

 So to remedy my "illustration block" I decided I needed to challenge myself. I searched the Internet and found this website called Illustration Friday.  It's a weekly drawing challenge that provides you with a prompt word and then you have to illustrate your interpretation of the word.  Every Friday a new topic is posted.  This week's topic is "Tape."

This is my interpretation of the word "tape."

I really had fun with this challenge so I think I will stay in it for a while.   It's also great to see other people's interpretation.  There is so much talent out there.   Here's another great link for more challenges from Kidlit411.

 So if you find yourself struggling with what to draw, go ahead and take part in the illustration challenges out there.  I did, and I love it.  It is a way to keep the creative juices flowing.  It definitely helped me overcome my illustration block.   I can't wait to see what next Friday's word is.

Until then, it's back to the drawing board for me.


Monday, November 14, 2016

My Illustrator Postcard!

My previous post, "SCBWI," was about me joining this wonderful organization.  One of the privileges of being a member is you get to attend certain regional events for free.

Back in September I attended at "Get-Together-Brown Bag Lunch," with Artist-Agent Chris Tugeau, at the home of A.B. Westrick.  Agent Tugeau had a Q&A session where she answered all of our questions.   It was a great turnout approximately 16-20 writers/illustrators showed up.

During the Q&A session Agent Tugeau talked about postcards for illustrators.  If you do not know what an illustrator postcard is. Postcards are the most cost effective way to promote your art and the fastest way to get it into the art director or agents hands.

At the time, I only had business cards made up (talk about old school) but, I guess I am showing my age.  I thought business cards were the most effective.

So when Chris Tugeau brought up postcards, I have to honestly admit, I had no idea what she was talking about.  So, I went home and did some research and came up with my postcard.

I decided on this picture as the front of my postcard.

And for my back:

So I sent my design off to get printed.  I was so excited when I got them back!

Well,  while I was looking them over I realized I made a big mistake on the back of the card!  Do you spot it?

I didn't leave space for who I'm sending it to.  The whole idea of a promotional postcard is to mail it like a regular postcard and avoid envelopes!  They say the chances of you mailing something in to an art director or agent in an envelope will probably end up in the trash.  Art Directors/Agents are so busy that they don't have time to open envelopes.  

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!  I'm pulling my hair out!  

Instead of trashing them, I decided to keep them for when I go to conferences and pass them out to my fellow illustrators.   If you want to read more on illustrator postcards here is a blog post you should check out:  Promotional Postcards, by Molly Idle.   It contains great information! 

Looks like it is back to the drawing board for me!

Until then...Keep drawing.  

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


Since my first post. I rejoined Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators SCBWI.  For those of you who don't know about this wonderful non profit organization, SCBWI is the largest children's writing organization in the world.   SCBWI is the only professional organization specifically for illustrators and writers of children's literature. They have 51 U.S. Chapters and 30 international chapters.

SCBWI supports and educates illustrators and writers through many different programs, awards, grants, and regional events.  They hold 2 annual conferences, the Winter Conference is held in New York and the Summer Conference is held in Los Angeles.  A couple of weeks back I attended my regional annual conference in Northern Virginia.  More on the Mid-Atlantic conference in a later post.

To sum it up, joining SCBWI is just the beginning of my journey in becoming a published illustrator/writer.   I believe strongly that this organization will be my voice to break into the exciting world of illustrating and writing children's books.   Anyone who is interested in becoming a children's book writer/illustrator should really think seriously about joining the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators-SCBWI.

Now, it's time to get back to the drawing board.

Until next time...Keep drawing!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Back at the Drawing Board

I'm excited to be back at the drawing board.  It has been a while since I've held a HB pencil and created an imaginary world filled with my characters.

The very first time I picked up a pencil and started DRAWING I knew right then and there that drawing was going to be a big part of my life.  I had visions of working for Walt Disney.  I would spend hours and hours in my room as a child just drawing and drawing (mostly Disney characters).  I became a hermit in my own bedroom.  I only came out to bathe and eat.

After graduating high school, I planned on going to college to get a degree in Art.  Well, life happened and needless to say I let my dreams die and fade away.   Fast forward to the present, I finally want to do something with the talent I was given.

I enjoy illustrating and writing children's books.  No, I have not published anything and no, I have not had the opportunity to illustrate for anyone other than myself. Hopefully, one day soon, I will make my dreams come true and live the rest of my life as an illustrator and writer of children's books.

Right now, I am currently working on my counting book featuring Timby (he's the handsome cat below) and some barnyard fun.  I will post some of my drawings in the near future.

Join me and Timby on my journey in becoming a published children's illustrator/writer.