Friday, June 28, 2013


Mermaid on tiny canvas

Happy Friday everyone!  As I mentioned last time, I finished the two remaining tiny canvases.  The first mermaid is quietly sitting on a rock in the sea and waiting for ships to pass by, dreaming of handsome sailors.  The second one is a more playful mermaid, though she's also daydreaming.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Painted Rocks

Last week was a productive one.  I finished some more little canvases, started a new painting, and even had time to rummage around the Ikea scrap shelves for new pieces of wood.  I'll be sharing more about these things later this week.

In the meantime, here's another result of last week's painting frenzy: a menagerie of animals on beach rocks that I brought with me to Art Mart.  Introducing a new product can be hit-or-miss sometimes, but I'm glad to say these stole the show last weekend!

I'll be making more of them soon.  I'd love your help; what animals would you like to see me paint?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Mask Maker Color Comps

Mask Maker color comps illustration

So here as promised are my four color comps for the Mask Maker piece.  I already feel like I've learned so much from just the first lessons of my class, it's crazy!

Initially I was planning to finish this painting in the direction of Comp 3, with the red and gold palette.  Comps 1 and 2 are growing on me more now though, so I'm having a bit of trouble deciding which would be best for the painting.  I'd love some advice.  If anyone has a clear favorite (or even some more color options to try) I'd love to hear about it.  

I've included the bigger versions below so you can get a good feel of how the colors in each look without the others next to them.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Magic Box Painting Course, and the Mask Maker Drawing

mask maker pencil sketch

Remember back in April when I mentioned one of my recent goals was to get better at digital painting? In the interest of doing just that, I've signed up for Chris Oatley's Magic Box digital painting course.

Chris is a super-dedicated, generous, and amazing teacher, and the community of students at the Oatley Academy is one of the best.  The course doesn't have a defined start date, the monthly lessons begin whenever you sign up, so you can go at your own pace to fit your schedule.  I'm a couple weeks into the course (it runs for 18 months), and can't recommend it enough.  If you're looking to improve in digital painting definitely check it out.

I know this course is going to keep me on my toes.  I'm totally excited.

I'm in the middle of my first homework assignment now, which is where this underdrawing comes from.  The main character of this illustration is a mask maker; in this scene he temporarily stops his work to look pensively out the window of his shop.  I've started painting him, and can't wait to play with different color choices for the scene in some color comps.  I'll be sharing those with you soon!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Pictures From the Road

New Mexico sky.

Last weekend I got back from my cross-country road trip with my family.  It took us four days to drive through North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and Arizona back to California.  Aside from stopping in Arkansas a few hours earlier than we thought we would, due to a tornado watch in Oklahoma and Texas, we had sunny skies and a safe drive back.  Looks like we got back in the nick of time before the storms picked up again.

I'm happy to be back home, but I'll miss the fun of waking up in a new place every day full of excitement for the unknown and unexpected.  I guess I'm more of a nomad than I thought I was.  ;)

Here's some of the places I saw while on the road:  

Wall of trees rising up to the sky in the Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee.

Rest stop in the Smoky Mountains.

I never knew Arkansas was so green.

Arizona desert.

Clambering about on rocks in Arizona with the family.  
I'm the person farthest to the right.  :)