Archive for March, 2010

March Goals wrap up

March 31, 2010

animal spot illustrations

Here’s how I did on my March goals for The Meetup.

  1. Finish first draft dummy for crit next week. I didn’t finish in time.  And honestly, I felt a little hesitant sharing such a rough project before I actually met them all.  However, the group is great, and my portfolio was received warmly and insightfully.  I’m looking forward to learning a lot from them. I’m bringing it next time (in April) for sure.
  2. Implement changes after the crit. See above.
  3. Update Hai account. Done. Check it out here.  And I was picked to be Featured Artist of the week!
  4. Prepare some blog posts in advance– with a goal of consistently posting three times a week. I’ve been doing this, but um forgot to post at all one week.  blargh.
  5. Update my site with new work. Done!  You can check out my new work here and here.
  6. Look into joining another portfolio site. I’ve started some research and its down to childrensillustrators.com and picture-book.com. Thoughts? Suggestions?  I should ask my crit group about this.
  7. Finish Aeolidia theme.
  8. Find another SCBWI conference to attend. I found one in June, in NJ right by where my grandmother lives. Perfect.

How did everyone else do?

In other exciting news, the rain has stopped!! and the sun is peeking out!  Hooray!  Unfortunately, most of RI is underwater.  But hopefully this means things will start to dry out.

PS. I think I’m going to use those drawings as part of a promotional piece to send out…

Rain Rain, Go Away

March 30, 2010

Remember all my talk about “sunny afternoons” and how warm weather was “right around the corner”?  Ugh.  We are on our 2nd, (3rd?) very grey, very very rainy, day.  And its making me bonkers.  Thankfully, we are a part of the apparently, lucky few who aren’t worrying about flooding.  Just bad moods.  ( I guess I should have spent Saturday outside, enjoying the sun, instead of cleaning my desk. Grr.)

Anyways, if you’re in the same boat (ha ha) as me, perhaps some virtual window shopping will cheer you up.  Or torment you.  Whatever.

If it were sunny, you could be wearing sandals!

tuto sandals

or, at least, lovely flats,

SMARTFISH shoes

and this pretty blouse,

cocoricooo shop

with some leggings, and this in your hair,

giant dwarf headband

and this hanging from your neck,

Sol del Sur necklace

and these dangling from your ears,

anna sofia designs

with this coloring book under your arm…

small magazine coloring book

Sigh.

I guess I’ll just hunker down, embrace the grey, and finish my taxes.   Here’s hoping Thursday, with its promises of sun, comes fast.

PS.  Click on the photos to get yerself some goodies!

She & Him

March 27, 2010

On this sunny Saturday afternoon, I’m inside, trying to make myself clean off my desk.  I thought listening to some music would help.  But then I got distracted:

Ezra Keats + Kittens! = Happy Un-Birthday Lila!

March 24, 2010

Lila did you know about this book??

Probably, being a librarian and all.  I can’t believe I JUST found out about it.  I hope you had a wonderful birthday!

Illustrations for TONY Kids

March 23, 2010

Header Illustration for Time Out NY Kids MagazineI got to do a bunch of illustrations for a Time Out New York Kids feature article on gardening.  Back when I was drawing, these sunny days, and anything green, seemed so far away.  But then we had an amazing weekend, and now it all seems right around the corner!

Illustrations for Time Out NY KidsI also did some spot illustrations for the numbers, which they didn’t end up using.  I guess it was getting too crazy.  But they’re cute, right?

Illustrations for Time Out NY Kids

Featured Artist!

March 22, 2010

featured artist at hire an illustrator, hai

Yay, I’m a Featured Artist for the week over at Hire An Illustrator!  Whoo hoo.  You can check it out here.

Hiro, the bat cat

March 12, 2010

I’ve never found the hairless variety of kitties to be particularly cute, but this little guy is making me rethink things.

http://finelittleday.blogspot.com/I think its the ears.

http://finelittleday.blogspot.com/

Do you see him?

http://finelittleday.blogspot.com

Go meet Hiro over at Fine Little Day.

All images from Fine Little Day.

Happy Birthday Papa!

March 8, 2010

Happy un-Birthday Papa!  61 + 1 day old.   I love you.

Thinking about Composition

March 4, 2010

andrea u'ren

I’m working on sketches for a book dummy and last week headed to the library for some inspiration.  The children’s  librarian was super nice and helpful– insisting on finding me every book on my list.  I ended up sitting at one of those tiny round tables for an hour paging through picture books piled around me.

One of the comments I received at the picture book workshop was that I should work on including more dynamic compositions.  Specifically different points of view, or angles, of a scene.  I definitely can get stuck in the medium-wide, straight-on shot and forget about playing with all the other perspectives.

Looking through picture books with a specific element in mind is a fun little exercise I find really helpful.  The author and illustrator, Andrea U’Ren, is great at varying the composition on every page of her lovely book Mary Smith.  So let’s have a look, shall we?

From above, looking down over the shoulder:

(Note the detailed peas in her pocket!)

Looking back and down, with a large character in the foreground and a teeny, tiny Mary in the background:

(See her?)

Coming straight at us:

From below, looking up:

Bisecting this wide shot, with the side of the house, gives the reader the feeling of looking down an alley:

I also really like how she illustrates the stories her characters are telling each other with black and white drawings in speech bubbles:

http://andreauren.com/

It feels like a fun nod to comics and graphic novels.

And lastly, a wide shot, with Mary in the slight foreground looking back:

While this composition is almost straight on, pushing and pulling the point of view, even minimally, makes a wide shot a bit more interesting.  I think its good to remember that the perspective doesn’t have to be super dramatic to be more dynamic.

Anyhow, I’ve been a fan of U’Ren ever since Pugdog was published.  I love her thick lines, planes of color, and how all her characters have this great, grounded weight to them.  If you haven’t already, definitely check her out.

Cuteness from Small Magazine

March 3, 2010

I love Small Magazine, an online publication “focused on independent designers and artists for children.”  This month I’m particularly into the “Small Guest House” feature which uses two picture books as inspiration to pick out favorite products of the season.

Small Magazine

I’ve seen similar articles/columns– decorating a room as if in x movie, or picking an outfit inspired by x print, (also fun ideas!–) but having the picture books be the inspiration seems wonderful to me.

Small Magazine

PS.  Happy 4th Birthday, Small!


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