Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas Presents!

This will be my last post for this year, but I will return again in the new year and make another attempt at a daily blog! The following are paintings that I did for my husband's parents and his grandmother. Two are of my son David, and the other is of my Mother in Law's cat that passed away just before Christmas. Pender was a very sweet cat and I wanted to do something special for my Mother in Law for Christmas. I hope you like them!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Pony!

My friend Kierstin asked me to draw a pony for her. Though it is drawn in the style of My Little Pony, this design was made especially for her. I hope she likes it!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Update - Ann Marie Meyers

I completely forgot to give a link to Ann Marie's blog, though I remembered the Twitter and Facebook links. Here it is:   Please check it out!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Ann Marie Meyers

Ann Marie Meyers is fairly new to the blogging world and is definitely someone to follow. Her website is: Ann Marie is already off to a good start by having an interesting and inspirational writing style.  Her interview of Lehua Parker is really neat as is Amie Borst's interview of Ann on her blog:

Ann Marie's book sounds just delicious. It's about a little girl who always wanted to fly, and gets her wish. I have a mushy part of my heart that loves a good flying story. Yes, there are tons of stories out there about kids flying, but this one beats out many of them with an excellent writer and a lot of heart. Just by reading the synopsis I can tell that this book deals with a lot more than many other books in this genre, and (presumably) has a lot more depth. I wont tell you any more about it here. Go to Ann's blog, read the synopsis and anxiously await the release of her book in July of  2013.

One thing not to go unmentioned about Ann Marie is her Facebook page:  On this page she will keep you updated on any blog post that she has written. She also gives many links to other authors/information that's worth learning about. She also has many interesting posts here on various other things (too many to list). Ann's twitter is also very active, and I love how polite she is to other twitter users!

Please check out Ann Marie! And Ann, if you are listening, please keep up blogging! I'm sure your blog will be off and running soon which will bring you tons of new readers. Good luck!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Shannon Hitchcock

Often I'll just write about a person's blog on my site, but Shannon Hitchcock's case I had to make an exception. There was too much information on her actual website that needs to be pointed out. The website and blog both focus on Shannon's book "The Ballad of Jessie Pearl," isn't just set in the past, it's based on her own history. To see them go to  and Http:// 

Shannon's webpage has all the things you expect from an author's webpage. There's a bio page, links to her blog and information about her book. What I like about her webpage and blog is that she has information and resources in these that many authors don't have.

Shannon's book trailer is a nice introduction to the book. The music in the trailer is nice for setting the mood. The illustration on the actual book cover is lovely and gives it a nice feel. The trailer is only a small part of what's neat about Shannon's website. I think my favourite thing is the teacher's resources. One can tell that Debbie Gonzales put a lot of time and effort into putting this guide together. There are a lot of resources, discussion questions and information packed into this study guide.

On Shannon's blog she has a lot of information about the process of book creation. Even though I've heard several accounts on how a book is made I found that Shannon's is more detailed than I usually see, but also the information she gives is interesting and well written. She also gives her own insight to what she's learned in the process of making the book. I loved reading about the inspiration of her book (her kid's school project of all things!) and the post "People Who Have Helped Me" was very heart warming. I think if I had to pick on thing that I like most about Shannon's blog is her reviews on books. These reviews always leave me with lots to think about long after I stop reading. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Haiku Hello


Hi, hello, good day!
It's good to see you again.
Let's not be strangers.

I am working on getting more time to work on my artwork. My time is limited at best, so I'm trying to make the most of it. I really could be posting more, but it's difficult getting back into a routine after stopping!  In any case I will be posting more often now. I will likely be changing things up, especially to make up for the lack of artwork I'll be able to show. I'm not sure of most things, but I do know that my Art Technique Website day will likely be changing to My Favourite Children's Book day. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Busy, Busy!

I've been very busy as of late. I know I said I would post again within a week, but it's been closer to two now. I want to get back onto my daily schedule within the next couple of days. Not sure when this will be, but I wanted to say I'm still alive. SO I'm still alive people. I'll be back soon, hopefully!

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Paper Clothes Fit (Or Finally, Paper Doll Clothes!)

The title post for this may seem a bit odd, but it's because I had a hard time getting this clothing to fit my dolls. It was a resizing issue in Painter and I'm hoping it doesn't happen again. All of these were inked in Painter. I don't know if I'll be doing this again, because it took me longer than it would have by hand. I didn't take into account that my computer doesn't have the power it needs to run this program smoothly. This lead to the computer running slowly, but also it would stop and start again suddenly leading to a huge mess on the virtual paper. Please let me know if you find any fit issues. I will be putting out some more clothing for these dolls soon. Here is a link to the dolls:

I do wish to announce that I'm taking a break from blogging this next week. I'm going to use this time to get some things done that I've been putting off lately. I will be working on artwork during this time, so I will have something to show when I come back. I hope you enjoy these paper dolls. I believe the next dolls I do will be of the fairy variety. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


So this week hasn't gone how I had planned. (They never really do listen to me. I'm going to have to have a serious talk with Sunday-Friday. Saturday is okay, though.) I will have paper doll clothes up tomorrow, but I'm not sure how much artwork I'll have ready for Thursday.

Today I'm not feeling like posting a website that has tutorials or even anything that is serious. The website I will tell you about is Eyezmaze: What do flash games have to do with Children's Illustration? I guess one could say nothing, but there is a reason why I'm bringing up this site. I absolutely love the creature drawings used for these Flash games. I would love to see these creatures put in a book, or even given their own TV show.  The games themselves are fun and original. While flash games may not be the best way for kids to pass the time, these games are kid friendly. It's a very addicting website as well.

Even if you aren't into Flash games this site is worth checking out. There is a gallery of images that's worth pursuing and that in of itself is worth a look. I would love to see the creator have enough money to make lots of games, and maybe even do lots more artwork perhaps as a children's illustrator. May never happen, but I can dream!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Fishy Questions

Little fishy swimming there:
Do you find the water fair?
What do you do all day?
How with fins do you play?
Can you dive the waters deep?
Are you able to sleep?
Where do you lie your head?
Why are you eyes so red?
Want to go play with my toys?
Who's making too much noise?

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Paper Dolls! (Finally)

Finally I have paper dolls to show you! Unfortunately I don`t have any clothing for these dolls tonight. Most of them are all ready to go, but they just need to be inked. I underestimated all the work that I would need to go through just to turn my drawings into working paper dolls. I`m hoping to get the clothing I have created inked and ready for you to print out tomorrow night, or Monday morning at the latest. I am definitely going to make more clothing for these dolls, however I may decide to create new dolls in the future that may or may not be related to these.


Click on image and save to your computer.

Print on card stock or other heavyweight material. Apply coating as directed below.

If no heavy weight material is available then print on paper. Colour dolls and paste onto cardboard. Rubber Cement or Elmers Glue works fine for this. Use glue sparingly and apply a thin coat to cardboard (fingers or popsicle sticks work good for application). Allow to dry completely before cutting (at least a few hours or overnight is best). A coating of Acrylic Medium, Clear Nail Polish or Liquid Puzzle Saver can be to protect your coloured work. Test coating (best time to do this is while the glue is drying) before using it directly on your paper dolls. If you have any questions about assembling your paper dolls please let me know in the comments!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Palacio Illustration

William Palacio is a whimsically hilarious person and this shows in his artwork. I venture to say that if you look at his blog and don't at least chuckle a couple of times after browsing his work either you have no sense of humour, or you are blind.

It's true that Palacio doesn't have a lot of words accompanying his pictures, but he doesn't need them. His artwork says everything. I'm sure I could learn a thing or two from him about being more concise with my posts, and I wish that I had as much humour and story in my drawings. I'm putting these on my invisible list of goals as we speak! One of my favoute drawings of his is this one:  I do have a son with a big personality so this may very much be my future.

The other great thing about William Palacio is that he has some great video tutorials on YouTube. I think it's great that these are in Corel Painter, because it seems that Painter has a bit more of a learning curve than Adobe Photoshop. This could just be me, though, because I've started in Photoshop and have recently purchased Painter. In any case please check out his videos here:  Keep checking out his blog, Facebook and this link for more updates.

I think we'll all be hearing more about William Palacio in the future. I'm looking forward to seeing his work in many picture books and hopefully other places as well. The world needs more humour. It is a wonderful thing that Palacio shares his humour with children.

Looking forward to a future that makes kids smile,


Thursday, October 4, 2012

Ball Haiku

Balls, balls, everywhere
bouncing and rolling, what fun.
Look, I caught a ball!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Escape From Illustration Island

Escape from Illustration Island is your one stop place for everything you need to know about the business side of illustration. Having said that this website is also chocked full of art tutorial yumminess. There are podcasts, a newly added bookstore, a resource library, and a link to Illustration Age which keeps you up t date on illustration news. Here's the link if you want to check it out:

There are no new podcast episodes of Escape from Illustration Island, but you can still download this (for free!) on iTunes. The articles have funny illustrations that the website owner, Mark Kaufman, drew  called: I Drew this Thing. New information for anything that happens in the art world is in the articles or on Illustration Age. The one thing I like most about this website is the information for professional illustration. Just about everything you need to know about growing your illustration business is here. The information is detailed and helpful no matter where you are in your illustration career.

This is a can't miss website if you love illustration!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


I had a lot of fun at the Word on the Street Sunday. So much so that I didn't post anything because I was so exhausted when I got home. In truth, I only spent a few hours at the festival itself. It's been difficult getting my son past his ear infection (he doesn't sleep much at night) so even though I got there at 12:30 pm it was 2:00 pm before I was able to even look at any of the tables. Even then I didn't plan to watch any of the readings (and was deathly afraid he'd wake up), so I spent most of my time going table to table. I only took a few pictures because my phone wasn't fully charged when I left.

It started as a typical day for my son David and I. While I'm getting ready my son gives himself a bath in the sink. I wish he'd take his clothes off first, but I guess I can't expect everything from a 20 month old.

One of my least favourite parts of the WOTS is watching the massacre of innocent comic books. Yes, it's okay to cut up National Geographic, but what did Captain America ever do to anyone? The pain an agony it causes (even though I don't care much for Captain America).

My son wanted to play with these magnets first thing. Unfortunately we had just eaten lunch so we had to go inside first to clean up. This lead to him throwing a fit in the library, drinking some milk and then taking a nap (the reason I didn't start on anything until 2 pm). I think we spent 20 minutes here playing with the letters. The actual table was for Westcoast Families. Though it's difficult to see in this picture there were magnetic words so kids could make poetry. David didn't make poetry, but he almost spelled cat.

We picked up a couple of books while we were there. Jeyn Roberts' Rage Within and Jeremy Tankard's Grumpy Bird. Both  were signed by the authors of the books. Jeremy seems to be the Illustrator as well as the Author (gotta love that) of his book. He signed with a drawing of the blue bird. The illustrations are wonderful and I'm sorry I haven't gotten a chance to read it yet. I spoke to Jeyn a bit before I left the table. She is quite a nice lady. Rage Within is actually the second book in the series (darn, now I have to go get the first book). It is based in a post apocalyptic world where nature is sick and tired of what man is doing to the earth. This book is suggested reading for those who liked The Hunger Games.  I don't know much about it beyond that, so I look forward to reading this new series!

Also, to cram a little more into this long post I'm going to add in a poem. This poem was inspired (and partially written) by my 20 month old son, David.

Shoes Socks

Shoes socks!
Shoes socks!
Thank you!
Shoes socks!

My son he likes to play all day.
And this is all he ever says:

Shoes socks!
Shoes socks!
Thank you!
Shoes socks!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Finished Painting

Sorry everyone! I don't have the paper dolls done just yet. Had a bit of a problem, but will finish them very soon. Here is a finished painting to look at while you wait!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Design of the Picture Book

Carter Higgins is a wonderful animator and has worked for the Discovery and History channels, worked on the film Shrek Forever After, and many other things such as commercials, music videos and video games. One of her passions, as a former elementary school librarian, is children's picture books. This can be seen in her blog: Design of the Picture Book. You can find it here:

The reason you have to visit this site is that Carter not only reviews books, but gives an in depth analysis of each book she reviews. Many reviewers will indeed go into the stronger plot points, metaphors and even go as far as to tear a book apart bit by bit. Carter on the other hand will review the story, but where she really shines is her in depth analysis on the visual aspects of a picture book.

Carter not only shows the readers what the artist did right in the illustrations, but also why the illustrations were so good. More understanding of the thought behind the illustrations is great because it gives a greater appreciation for the book as a whole. It a wonderful site to visit to find wonderful books to read to your children, or inspiration for your next work of art.

On top of her book reviews Cater has other points of interest in her blog. There is a link to see her portfolio reel, which is a lot of fun to watch. She does book trailers for picture books such as the one she did for The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School. This trailer was engaging, fun and made me want to read the book and there are a lot more where that came from! Be sure to check this blog out. I'm sure I'll find some new picture book gems here to make my favourites. I can't wait to get to the library now!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

New Artwork

This is a sketch that I did in memory/honour of a friend. I haven't spoken to her in quite some time, and may not be able to get in touch with her again. She had a great love of animals and the world around her. I'm hoping to finish this piece tomorrow. Almost forgot to say this is done on tracing paper. This is the reason for the grey areas and strange appearance!

Lost Footwear

Lost Footwear

I can't find my socks.
Shoes are nowhere to be seen.
Oh, my eyes are closed!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Posemaniacs is an interesting website for referencing art. This website has hundreds of 3-d models to draw from. I could say that all these models are nude, but it's more scandalizing than that! These models pose without their skin as well! It shamef... actually it's an excellent reference for those really wanting to know the muscular system. The models are tastefully posed, and a few of them show motion.  Originally this website needed to be translated, but I believe they have an english site now. There is an iPhone app for random poses -this is the only way you are going to see anything on your phone, because this site runs on Flash. A small problem with the site is it only has 20 child poses, and the child is the same age in all of these. Also you can only zoom in so close to the models which can be a bit frustrating. Here's the link:

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

My Sleep Sheep

My Sleep Sheep

It's late, I know, but I can't sleep.
Oh yes, it's true, that I count sheep.
I looked and looked and looked all day.
Could they all have just run away?
Maybe I will just count my toes.
They can't run from me I suppose.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Doodle Over Top of This Page

For my Wreck this Journal blog entry today I doodled over top of a page. My son helped a bit. I bet you can't figure out the parts he did himself.

Paper Doll - First Look

I had hoped to finish at least the doll portion of my paper doll today. Unfortunately, I had too many distractions with a sick baby. I will show you a WIP for this. I am working on two dolls right now. One is an dog and the other is a cat. The cat isn't far enough along to show yet, so here is the dog! I will likely put both in bathing suits, but I haven't designed those yet. Next week I should be ableto finish these, and maybe even start some clothing.

If you have any requests for clothing or accessories for these dolls please let me know!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Go Bananas

So it's Friday again. Now I know what I'm supposed to be doing every day, and I'm going to attempt to stick to that schedule. Today I will be showing you a website, but it wont be of any specific artist. This is the
SCBWI's blog: Go Banannas. I bring this up because last Saturday I drew the "S" for the blog's header. It was a lot of fun, and I want to share the result with everyone.

I'm not sure how long this blog will be updated (or in existence), so take a look while it's still around! There is a lot of nice artwork and some good information for illustrators as well. I will scan in the original and post it here, but for now check out the actual blog:

Also, I wanted to mention that I submitted something for publication (finally). True, the submission is to the SCBWI Bulletin, so it's not quite the same as submitting to a publisher. I'm excited nonetheless.  The picture I submitted is of a couple of bunnies. The mommy bunny in the picture is reading to her baby bunny. I'd post the picture here, but that would kind of defeat the purpose of them having First North American Publishing Rights. I'll hopefully have something fun to post tomorrow!

Thursday, September 20, 2012


It is the wrong day
a haiku I'll do today
such a silly poem

Putting All of My Rows in a Duck

Not much time to write much today. Baby was sick. Went to the hospital and Dr. found an ear infection. So tired and more tired I write my plan. This schedule is still under review. If, for any reason, I get bored with it then it will be changed.

Sunday.................My Wreck this Journal
Monday................Questionable Poetry
Tuesday................Art Resources/Techniques
Friday...................Artist/Writers to Follow
Saturday...............Paper Doll/(New Clothes)

I'm not sure if I'll have any Art or WIP for tomorrow, so we'll see what happens. Other than that it should be be good!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Drawing How to Draw

I almost forgot to post today. Silly me! So today I'll introduce you to a website called Drawing How to Draw This website has a wealth of information on how to draw different things in many different styles.

One of my favorite parts about this website, at least the cartoon portion, is that you can draw online while you learn. There is a box that shows up on the right hand side of your screen. You just use the tools there so that you can follow the instructions while you are being taught. It's not at all as advanced as anything like Photoshop, but it is a fun addition to the website.

This website has a whole community to go along with it. There are forums, contests, a draw chat, collections of drawings, a place to upload your own tutorials and more. The biggest drawback of this website is the sheer amount of ads you will encounter just being on the site. Pop-ups, moving ads, and more do distract from an otherwise wonderful website. This website is for all ages, so check it out and get drawing!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Benjamin Martin and Samurai Awakening

I asked on a message board for some writers/illustrators to give me their links so that I could review their websites. Benjamin Martin ( was the first to stand up. This is why I'm reviewing his websites today. His new book "Samurai Awakening" will be available for purchase in October of this year.

What drew me to read more about Benjamin's writing was in fact his blog that has nothing to do with writing.  His blog: contains a wealth of information about life in Japan. Not only does Benjamin blog about large events in Japan, but he also writes about details that most people would ignore. Food might seem like a small thing to some, but it's very interesting to see the finer details between eastern and western cultures. This blog has vivid pictures, detailed information about events and a unique insight of Japan today.

The reason I mention the blog before the book is that Benjamin's blog shows that he really understands the culture in Japan. It might seem like a small thing, but it's very important when writing a book (especially when writing a book like this) to get the details correct. I have yet to read his book, but reading his blog makes me eager to get a hold of this book (it will be available in October). No doubt it will be full of Japanese culture, good writing and a bit of mysticism for good measure. Benjamin's website has a wealth of information on the book including news, events and even a glossary of Japanese words used in the book. Be sure to check it out and pick yourself up a copy of "Samurai Awakening". I know I will!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Way Too Small

Really the only way to get better at something is to do it, so I'm practising my poetry skills here.  Here is a new poem, enjoy!

Way Too Small

Today I'm going to sing the blues.
I just can't fit into my shoes.
I can not wear these silly socks.
I will tear this crazy frock.
My pants don't fit - they're way too tight.
Even my belt does not fit right.
I should go on a diet I suppose.
Oh look, I'm wearing baby's clothes!


Sorry I haven't posted over the past few days. I've been ill (the details of which I will keep to myself.). Hopefully I can start posting again soon!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A Haiku

Needs Work

I've nothing to show
a common problem, I know
This weekend won't blow.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Line Drawing: The Ducks

Here is a line drawing I did from a book I worked on when my son was born. It was just a little book that my husband and I created to welcome my son into the world and also thank friends and family members for their support. I will be adding some shading to this, but it will stay a black and white image. I'll compare it when I've finished to the original colour image I created.

Unique Pigments With Zhen

So I'm going to do something a little different today. I want to introduce you all to one of my friend's websites. Her name is Zhen and she creates wonderful eyeshadow pigments. The reason why I'm posting this is she's trying to earn money to take her teen daughter to a convention. This event is to make up for having to miss her birthday earlier this year. Poor Zhen had to go into a life saving surgery at the time of her daughter's birthday! Did I meantion that she needs this money by the weekend? Use the code: CONVENTION and you can save 25% on your order if you get it in for the next few days.

 The great thing about this make up is that you can use it for costume make up for Halloween. Zhen says you only need to add lotion to this make-up to make it creamy like costume make-up!  I wish I had more followers, because I would love to do a Halloween make-up contest for all of my followers! If by next year I have 100 followers I will be sure to do just that. And if by some miracle I had 50 people follow my blog before Halloween, then I would definitely have a contest! Okay, that would be a miracle, but a girl can always dream, can't she?  In any case, if you buy her make-up and want to share the results with me please email me at daniduckart(AT) Remove the (AT) and replace it with @ of course! Anyone who does this will have their photo(s) posted on my blog!

All photos depict make up jobs created using Zhen's pigments!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

SCBWI and Coming Soon: Weekly Paper Doll!

A few days ago I joined SCBWI. I've done some artwork recently but I don't want to show it just yet because I might submit it to their bulletin. I'm excited about all the possibilities with this new membership. I have to get cracking and add to my portfolio there. I also need to continue adding to my portfolio here as well.

I have decided one thing to add to my blog. I want to work on a weekly paper doll. I loved paper dolls as a little girl and I would love to create one here for people to print out for their kids. I will start with the doll itself and add clothing every week for her wardrobe. Possibly I will be adding more clothes as time goes on! If there are any requests for this please let me know! These will all be black and white line drawings, so they can be coloured! I might add some coloured clothing as time permits, but I'll always offer the black and white drawings along with these. I don't know if I'll have time to do it until Friday, but I look forward to getting started!

Since I missed yesterday I fully plan on posting again later today! Sorry about that, still working on which things I'm posting when. Hopefully when I have enough things to do daily the missed days will be a rare event.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Elizabeth O. Dulemba's Lula's Brew

Elizabeth O. Dulemba's blog is one of the few blogs I love and try to keep up with. Recently Elizabeth announced that one of her best selling book apps is now going to print! The book is Lula's Brew and it's available this Halloween! You can check out Elizabeth's website here:
Her book is a wonderful find, and I do hope you pick it up! I am sure I will be talking more about Elizabeth in the future!

Favourite Resources: Dani Draws

Probably one of the greatest resources I can point any potential illustrator to is Dani Jones' web site: We both have the same first name but I can assure you that we bare no relationship! To reiterate: This is NOT my website. I only say this because I have had a minor incident where someone thought this was my website! I would love her work to be mine and to be well established in the industry, but that is still a ways into my future.

Dani's blog has just about anything you could want to know about Children's Picture Book Illustration. Many of her tutorials are based on doing artwork in Photoshop, but the information she shares is not limited to that medium or even how-tos for drawing. She has tutorials for things like: Digital Comic Books, Website Design,  Detailed Photoshop/Painting How-tos, and Submitting Illustrations for Publication.  On top of this she does Reviews for Books, Conferences, and Artist's Tools. Another bonus to her site: She does live drawings on Ustream and you can talk to her (and other people) while she draws. I've yet to experience this myself. If Dani doesn't have the information you need, then you  just need to look as far as her links to find out what you need to know!

Dani Draws is an invaluable resource for any children's illustrator. I love her expressive and whimsical style. I honestly don't know what I would have done without this website! Her posts have kept me inspired and helped me out through the long road to publication. Please check out her website!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wreck This Journal - The Fat and Thin of it

I will eventually change this day, but until further notice Wednesdays are Wreck This Journal days. Just for fun and laffs. I love the idea of this book, so let's see if I love wrecking this book (it goes against everything I believe, but so far so good).

Late Night Poetry

A True Story

       tiny little spider in my bathroom
        in the middle of the room do you loom? 
        I'll squish you with the handle of my broom.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Not the End of the Daily Blog

This is not the end of my daily bloging (or is it blogging?). It may be past midnight for me, but somewhere in the world it is still yesterday, so I'm sticking with the fact that I did indeed post the today which was (and is somewhere) yesterday. Please stand by for your regular daily postings...

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Photos From The Book Store

Of course the day after I make this a daily blog I forget to make a daily post. Almost forgot again after I realized that I didn't have the app to post on my iPhone. Here are a couple of photos from the local book store I found humorous:

May We Suggest

I honestly believe the above is a subtle hint that it's time for me to move.

All of Harlequin's best romances are on this rack.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Daily Blog!

I've been very bad lately with tending to my poor blog! I know this is so, and I'm sorry. The good news is that I'm still actually working on my artwork, but just not posting it here. I will start doing this more often. Also I'm really tempted to make this a daily blog so that I don't stop posting... okay done! Daily blog in progress!

 I'll try my very best to post at least a little each day. I got a Wreak This Journal a few months back and I've yet to even bend the pages. I'll post some excerpts from that. There will definitely be some sub-par poetry involved. Maybe a bit on how I'm doing in getting things published, and pictures. I need to work on some black and white artwork now. Oh yes, and I do have some pictures to show!

I was hoping to finish my Little Mermaid painting, but for now I'm putting it on the shelf. Need some new paper, so I will work on it a bit later. I have a couple of paintings from requests that I've gotten from friends

This first one is an avatar for an online game:

 This one is for a teacher that needed a class mascot. I really like how it turned out. It was a lot of fun to do!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Mermaid Inks!

I've been working on that drawing since I was last here. I like the outcome a lot better than any of my previous attempts. I have a small scanner surface. The actual size of this is about 11x16. I just did a quick edit in Painter, so yes it may be painfully obvious I put two pictures together. That's okay, because I just wanted to show you my line drawing before paints!

Monday, July 16, 2012

And Now for Something Completely Different..

So a few days ago I got a comment from Katrina DeLallo that she gave me two awards. She made a lovely post on her own blog and links to five wonderful blogs. You can visit her website at Now it's my turn.

In order to be worthy of these awards I have to tell you seven things about myself. I suppose these should be seven things about myself that can't be read in my bio.

1) I hate milk. It's gross. If I'm to drink it, then it must contain tons (and I mean tons) of a chocolate flavoured syrup or powder.

2) I have (at least) seven email addresses. They all have their purposes. A couple of these I rarely use any more. I'm sure they'll soon be replaced!

3) I always have a list of things to do in my head. I remember most things I need to do, and sometimes the lack of doing these keeps me up at night. I should get a notepad, phone, or even use my computer to keep these notes, but what fun would that be?

4) I use to have an obsession with nail polish. I use to buy any colour I thought was cool and wear them maybe once or twice. I stopped this after I had David, because I was afraid it wasn't good for him or some silly thing. Now it's just impossible to wait the time it takes for my nails to dry.

5) I was convinced before college that I would be a computer animator/comic book artist. I'm not really sure if I have the patience for either any more. Funny how things change!

6) You probably know this, but I've never, ever submitted anything to a publisher. I've wanted to, and plan on doing so soon. I've never felt that I've had anything good enough to show, so I've not submitted anything.

7) I have had 6 blogs in all. My first was Paw Prints and it was about my cats. I stopped posting there when one of the cats passed away. That was way back in 2006. My other blogs include three art blogs. One was a daily blog (I had 158 posts before I stopped. Pregnacy and a daily blog wasn't working for me.) one was much like this one, but I ended it back in May, because I wasn't liking the format. I have a private one that has pictures of my son, David. And a new daily one that I've started: I'm keeping that one separate from the other ones because it's more maturer stuff than I have here. Nothing about art their either.

Okay now I need seven bloggers. This was not an easy decision at all! There are a lot of blogs I love, but I've decided to only post ones that post consistently and have recent posts. In no particular order:

1) Ginger*:)
2) Nancy Merkle
3) Candace Trew Camling
4) Daisy
5) Ann
6) Nelmarie Rennison
7) Dani Jones (No relation ha ha!)

So now I go to each of their blogs and tell them what I've done. Hopefully they don't shriek in horror when they find out! Be sure to check these out. 5 and 6 are cooking blogs and the rest are artists. All great sites. Check them out!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Evil Sea Witch

I've done a painting (years ago) that would be a cover for my retelling of the Little Mermaid. I've worked on this several times, but have never been happy with the painting. I did a lot of research for the background, but the characters never seemed to work with the background. Here is the evil sea witch on tracing paper.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

My Favourite Art Books

I'm going to add a new page to my blog. This will be for all my favourite art-related books. This might also include writing books and fiction books I enjoy at a later date. For those of you who don't want to hunt and click here are the art books I love:

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Out With The Old...

I've re-done a couple of my old digital paintings in watercolour. It's a dramatic difference seeing them side by side. I think the watercolours have more character. What do you think?

Old Lady Bug

New Lady Bug

Old Turtle

New Turtle

Monday, June 25, 2012

Just for Fun

Here are some things I did just for fun.

This is a birthday cake I did for my Father-in-Law

Cake I did for a baby shower. I got an idea for the fruit from a pic online.

This is a painting I did for a friend:

Friday, June 22, 2012

Reinventing My Wheels

I have two inks to show off today. Both are things you've seen before, but I wanted to see what I could do with these in watercolour. Currently both of these are digital in my portfolio. I'm moving the entire portfolio to watercolour, and want to see if these two still fit in with my artwork. The second one I've inked already, but I wasn't happy with the outcome. Enjoy!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Finally New Art

Chaos, screaming, crying and sleeplessness has fallen upon me! All that was just this morning. Add sickness to the list and you have the story of my life. Despite the chaos I got a few things done. Here is what I have now, enjoy!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Inked Drawings

Today I did some inks of the sketches I did the other day. The last one is a drawing I've already finished in Photoshop, but I wanted to see how it would look in watercolours. I'm hoping to colour these Thursday or Friday this week. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

Two Sketches

A couple of sketches to show today. I need tape before I can continue these. I hope to get it soon so I can finish! These are on tracing paper so they are a bit hard to see at this point.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Why I Did Not Post (and Other Likely Stories)

I would have liked to post a lot more lately. I've been quite busy with family illnesses and haven't made quite the progress I wanted to make. The truth is, when all is said and done, my cat is really the one at fault. 

Why I Did Not Post

My cat, made me unable to post.
My cat, you see, is meaner than most.
A cat you’ll say, but don’t they just play?
A cat I’ll say, just sat in my way.
She hid the camera in the couch.
She bit my foot ‘til I said, “ouch”!
She wouldn’t let me type the keys.
(She threatened to infest with fleas.)
She smacked away the laptop mouse,
She’s taking over my whole house!
She begs and pleas now for a treat.

Maybe most people would have spent this last half hour working on their artwork. I prefer to tell the truth in rhyme (good or bad you decide) while sipping coffee and eating a sandwich. If that was wrong, then I just don't want to be right.

Good news though, I do have something more to post then a questionably fabulous rhyme. This is a painting I'm working on for my Mother-in-Law. This was taken with a cell phone and adjusted to make up  for the skewing and colour problems that occurred. I hope the next picture will be a better representation of this painting. 

I tried to finish this before Mother's Day, but I ended up feeling too weak to work on it. I worked out today and now that I've posted I'm going to take it easy. Getting over a nasty cold/stomach bug.  Having a bit of a fun sketching/research day today. Hopefully I'll feel better the next baby-free day, so I can work on more things.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Spirit of Portfolio Future (or My Illustration Goals)

Now that I know that my portfolio shouldn't be burned (ha ha ha) it should be safe to work on (though I won't put it somewhere where it can even read the words "open flame"). My portfolio still has a lot of dents that need to be ironed, and wrinkles that need to be cut.

My list of I wills: 

1. I will say a sorrowful goodbye to my digital and mature art. I will still be keeping copies of these, but there aren't enough of them to create portfolios of their own. I don't want to focus on either one of these right now, so they will go behind the happy little bush until I decide to work on them again.

2. I will be working in watercolours and inks for the time being. If I do anything digitally it will be to enhance these. I recently finished a piece of art that I want to reflect in future illustrations. I finished this the day before I went to the conference: 

This was scanned from a print I had made. There is a little missing from either side. The original is 11x17.

3. I will go through my collection of cool sketches and ideas and develop the promising ones to sparkly splendour. The sparkly splendour is self-explanatory

4. I will work on a list of potential publishers. I'm planing on buying a shiny version of the Children's Writer and Illustrator Market when I get the chance (non-shiny is the old version). 

5. I will work to make more connections in the industry. Some of this will be obtained by blogging. Getting to know more writers/illustrators/editors including those who want to be any of these. I also plan to join SCBWI as soon as I have the means to do so.

6. I will start working on writing more along with drawing. I can write well, but I don't spend a lot of time writing. My skill isn't as sharp as it was. I'm hoping to start writing more picture book stories and possibly confront my nemesis the poem. This should also help me make spiffier blog posts. 

7. I will start submitting my work to be published. I haven't submitted anything as of Today. I'm 0 for 0 right now, and I'm hoping to change my average (even if it drops into the negative). I may even frame my first rejection letter!

8. I will update my physical portfolio and the studio where I work. I do need a better (and less cluttered) area to do my artwork. I need to buy a smaller portfolio in order to present to Art Directors. I also need a few art supplies (which will always be the story of my life).

9. I will figure out more things to add to this list. I'm out of ideas, so it's goodbye for today!

Portfolio in the Past and Present

     After attending SCBWI and getting a portfolio review I have decided to post some of my Illustration Goals. Many of these I had already, and a few of these are the result of attending the conference. I'm going to start first by posting a bit about my past and then another post to list things I'm going to focus on now.

     I feel like my portfolio review was surprisingly a pleasant experience. I know a thing or two about poor portfolio review experiences. The first one was when I entered University and attempted to transfer into a Computer Animation department. There was a large miscommunication between myself and the reviewer, which in turn got me rejected from the program (this was no fault of the instructor). I was also inexperienced in organizing my portfolio and didn't realize I had surpassed the amount of images I could show. In any case the miscommunication that happened made me more nervous. I was able to overturn the rejection before my classes started, but I suffered a large blow to my confidence.

    My portfolio has shaped up a lot since then. My portfolio still needed (and needs) a lot of work, but it was to the place where I wouldn't die in a horrible fit of embarrassment showing it to anyone. Brian was fair judging my portfolio and gave me suggestions on what to leave out and where I should go now. I will now work on my portfolio with a new confidence, and will give consideration to all of his suggestions as I work.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

SCBWI: There I Went

      I'll have to say that I quite enjoyed my first conference. The Society of Children's Writer's and Illustrators have a nice conference here in the Canadian West. All of the speakers were friendly, knowledgeable and approachable.

  The day started with an Illustration Workshop. We had a small group of illustrators attend. On one hand I would have loved to see more people, but then again it gave us more time to ask questions and talk about our own artwork a bit. Brian Denies was the speaker at this workshop. His illustrations if you haven't seen them are breathtaking ( to read more about him). He is also quite the accomplished artist. I enjoyed hearing about his process and the knowledge he had about the illustration field. There were two writing information sessions that went on during this time, but I didn't feel like I was missing out (I did feel bad for the non-illustration type, they missed out on a good time in the art room). It was lovely having lunch with him and a few other illustrators from our group.

   The other speakers that I got to see were Tiffany Stone, Kallie George, and Danika Dinsmore. Tiffany has lively poetry and a website to match ( I had a lot of fun listening to her poems and what she had to say about poetry. Kallie ( ) is the editor at Simply Read books, so she was able to give everyone a behinds the scenes look at what goes on in the editing world. She was lively and funny. I would love to read her mermaid book. Danika Dinsmore ( was a surprise (to me) but welcome addition to the speakers. She talked about the Bologna Children's Book Fair and the adventures she had there. It was the end of the day and I was tired, but she kept my attention the whole time (woke me up for sure)! Great speakers all around.

    I do hope I can attend this conference again. The only change I would make for next year is to take more advantage of the resources this conference has to offer. I didn't get to attend Lois Peterson's or Shelley Hrdlitschka's talks, but I did like them on panel.  I was impressed by the shear amount of information I got in one short day! Though they may never see this, I do thank all the speakers and people who made this conference possible.

     I don't want to overburden an already overly-large post, but I do want to talk about my portfolio review and my direction for the future. I will do this in my next post. For now I leave you with a new illustration.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

No Updates Yet

Sorry everyone for not posting. I'm working on a few last minute things and haven't had a spare minute to post. I promise I will be posting again soon and with some new artwork and maybe even interesting things to say!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Carousel Finished

I've been hard at work (and sometimes hardly working) finishing these two illustrations. I finished the carousel as seen below, but I'm still working on the girl. I decided to scratch the inked drawing and decided to do something without ink. I should be able to finish the girl tomorrow, but for now you can enjoy the carousel!

I will be attending the SCBWI conference in May. I recently got confirmation in the form of a cashed cheque. I can't wait!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

New Illustration Inkings

Here are a couple of illustrations I'm working on. They are just in ink format right now, but I will be colouring them as early as Monday. I have a few more I'm working on and hope to have them started soon.