Preliminary Sketching

I've been sketching out some ideas for a little children's story. Not for publication, just to enhance my portfolio. Most of my illustrative work is a single image for a story, where publisher's like to see that you can complete a story arc and draw the same character over and over again.

I sketched this out at the laundromat, which is one of the best places to sketch in spite of all the noisy machines, screaming kids, and heated conversations in Spanish. Or maybe because of them. How would I know?

The only bad thing about sketching there was that I didn't have a ruler with me, so I was just guessing at the perspective. But I think it's a good first run. Or second run, initially I'd thought to draw this scene from above, but I realized pretty quickly that, that wasn't the angle I was really looking for.


Fairie Photos Part 2

Some more fun in the woods using thrift store finds, a bit of glitter, and a lot of photoshop. My sister and I had a lot of fun planning this, we love random stuff like this. What kind of projects do you take on during your vacations?

Part 1 Here


Amish Neighbors

My neighbors aren't really Amish, but I work in an area with lots of Amish people in it and I've drawn illustrations for four books that have stories featuring mostly Amish people. This illustration is just one I was drawing to loosen up for a day of creating.

The Amish are interesting people, but I think more interesting than what they're not allowed to do is what they are. Yesterday I was getting my hair cut and in the next chair was an Amish lady getting her hair dyed. Last week I was at the mall and saw a group of Amish girls. I see them in the mall regularly, they buy shoes and sweaters there all the time, but I was still a little surprised them toting pink striped bags from Victoria's Secret.

Have you seen anything that surprised you recently?


Pixi Haircut

What do you think? Do you like pixie hair cuts? I kind of want to like them, but I never quite can.
I've had fairly short hair myself, too and I never end up liking it when I look back at photographs, even though people tell me it looks great at the time.

Lately I've been reading a lot of beauty/fashion/hair blogs like Hair Romance, The Beauty Department, and Keiko Lynn and there are all kinds of styles I want to try with my hair, but I realized that I couldn't try most of them with my hair falling just past my chin! So now I'm growing it out even further so I can play.

Do you like long hair or short hair best for yourself?


Custom Illustration: Brian & Shannon

The original photo is by Trinity Bennett Photography
A month or two ago Shannon asked me to draw a cartoon portrait of herself and her fiance, and their golden lab. With the wedding just a couple weeks away, she gave the portrait to Brian as a pre-wedding present and I can finally show all of you!
They are an adorable couple and I wish them both the best!


New Prints in my Etsy Shop

1. Delicious Summer 2. Dandelion Love 3. Starlit Nights 4. What the Heck? 5. Spring Joy
6. Dancer 7. Story Lane 8. Retro Honey 9. Goldielocks at the Bears

I know you all have seen these illustrations when I first posted them, but they're finally available in the shop!

Are you all enjoying your labor day weekend? Any big plans?

I was a little surprised to find myself without plans this weekend. Other years I've done crazy things like driving to Florida with a friend, learning to drive stick shift and then driving under 48 hours. Or I've done normal things like cookouts.  This year I'm mostly planning on doing some illustrations for my sisters and meeting some friends for Starbucks.

What about you? Do you do special/crazy things for Labor Day or is it pretty much your average weekend?


Back to School

One of my friends has started teaching 5th grade this year. She asked me to make her a "Back to School" coloring sheet along with the question, "Do fifth graders still like to color?" I figured they still like to color, but I wasn't sure if they're still admitting to it in the fifth grade.

Turns out they are, they loved this coloring sheet and I hope your kids (or, you know, nieces, nephews, cousins, grandchildren, baby-sitting charges, legal wards, etc.) will too. Just click the picture on this page and it will take you to a larger version. Right click save as and print from your computer.

As always, this page is available for coloring only. You may not use it for any other purpose what-so-ever. Thanks :)