Friday, October 31, 2014

Zombie beach

John (the husband) sketched this picture of Yvette (the daughter) on our vacation this year and I thought it was funny so I painted it. Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 30, 2014


I wish I had spent more time sketching this out first, but I was eager to get it painted. In fact, this is a problem I struggle with all the time. Drawing is definitely more of a challenge for me. Painting is just fun and that's where I get in 'the zone'. I need to slow down and get the drawing right or else the illustration is never going to look right. It was just for practice this time though so no big deal.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


I wanted to do a side by side comparison for myself to see how different my new technique is compared to just using gouache. (New on the left side.) The good thing about using colored pencils is I can use a fine point for more accurate details and the shading is subtler. The skin tones definitely look better the new way. I am so glad I took Shadra Stickland's advice on my portfolio critique. Now I have to get started on new portfolio pieces!


I'm having fun playing around with new techniques. I am using colored pencil as a base shadow layer on the faces , then I do a transparent watercolor wash over top of it, and I am using gouache for the clothes, hair, etc. I think it gives the skin a nice glow and I love the variety of textures.

Sunday, October 26, 2014


Yesterday was my first SCBWI conference and portfolio critique. It was overall a very good experience.I learned a lot about the industry and met some fellow illustrators who are in the same situation as me, that are just starting out and finding our way. My critique was with the talented Shadra Strickland. Some of what she said was a little hard to hear, but that is true of all good critiques. You work so hard and to hear it's not as good as you believe it is, is bad for the self-esteem. However she gave me some great suggestions on what to work on, including:
*My character's faces were too cartoony/generic and suggested I use more photographic reference.
*The backgrounds were not receding enough and in turn my characters were not as sharp as they should be.
*I should work on using more negative space in my compositions
*My skin tones were too muddy looking
*Try playing around with different mediums
*She thought that I haven't found my style yet (I'm not sure if I agree with this one)
*Don't paint what you think people want to see, paint what makes you happy and excited

So I am going to take her advice and play around and do some experimenting. Today I played with combining gouache, concentrated watercolor and colored pencil. I like the results and I'm going to keep on keepin' on.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

baby drac

Another page.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

baby drac

I am not very happy with this one, and I don't know why. Sometimes it's hard to know why an image isn't working. I will continue working on it though until I get it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

school friends

I knew I could do better, so I gave it another try.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Saturday, October 11, 2014


Another one for the portfolio.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Heads part 3

More head practice from my sketchbook. This time I used reference photos.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

school bear again

In preparation for my portfolio review at the SCBWI conference in a few weeks, I am looking through my portfolio with a careful eye and I am replacing or re-doing pieces that I think I could do better. Here is one that I chose to re-do.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Baby Drac

A page from Baby Drac Needs a Nap.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

heads part 2

More head practice today.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

heads just heads

I had about four hours to kill today waiting for my car to get serviced and luckily there was one of the last remaining bookstores right across the street. I got some coffee, found a seat and practiced drawing heads for the next four hours. Not an altogether bad way to spend ones day. Here's a few, and more to come as I have to do it all over again tomorrow with John's car.

Friday, August 29, 2014


Harley Quinn is the coolest. As a kid, I would come home from school and watch Bruce Timm's Batman everyday, and my favorite episodes were always the ones with Harley in them.

Monday, August 25, 2014

coral mermaid

I've had the idea for this in my sketchbook for a really long time, and when I saw Illustration Friday's topic "skull" I knew it was time to finally paint it.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Baby Drac needs a nap

My sister and I are collaborating on a children's book and here are the main characters. I am about to get started on storyboarding the pages and then I will make a book dummy which I really hope to have done by the SCBWI conference in October so I can add it to my portfolio.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

duck hotel

Many years ago, John and I stayed in a hotel where actual ducks lived on the top floor and everyday a man would march them from the elevator to a fountain in the lobby where they would hang out for awhile. I thought it would be funny if the manager put the ducks to work in the hotel, at the front desk, housekeeping, in the kitchen, as bell hops. I might have to do more of these. . .

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


I wanted to re-do this painting which I made earlier in photoshop. I wanted to re-do it in gouache, since that is my favorite medium and the one I am focusing my illustration portfolio on. I read on a lot of artist's blogs that they prefer working digitally to save time, however I painted this faster in gouache than I did on the computer, although that is probably because I'm not as familiar with digital painting as I am with traditional mediums. Working digitally certainly does save time when it comes to scanning the painting in though. It is a rather large piece so I had to scan it in four different sections then composite them together. When working digitally it is nice to just save and be done with it. Overall I like both of them, but I had much more fun painting the new one.



Monday, June 9, 2014


Two sketches from my sketchbook that I painted. I wanted to try using colored pencil on top of the gouache to see if I would like it. Turns out I do, but only when used sparingly for final details.

Sunday, June 8, 2014


John and I took Yvette to the local zoo yesterday and I managed to get a few animal sketches in. When we got home later I painted this from my iguana sketch. I had a lot of fun playing with the colors.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

voodoo dreams

I was asked to participate in an awesome blog called All types of artists draw their interpretation of a favorite jazz song. It's a pretty cool blog so check it out. I made this one inspired by Les Baxter's voodoo dreams, as I've been newly obsessed with 1950's tiki culture. I'm also submitting this for Illustration Friday's topic; retro. Painted in gouache.

Friday, May 16, 2014

spring flowers

Just some spring flower watercolors.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

little creature

Just a quick sketch that I painted. I don't know who this little dude is but I like him.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

survival badge

I had a hard time coming up with an idea for this weeks illustration friday's topic survival, but I finally came up with a scout trying for his survival badge.

Thursday, April 3, 2014


I had to do a day to complement my night illustration from yesterday. This one is also for Illustration Friday's topic sizzle.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


My idea of the perfect summer night is a patio party with retro tiki lights, fruity drinks with umbrellas and great music. I think I need to paint a patio party next. But first here is a happy moon.

Saturday, March 29, 2014


Just a quick, little fat woodland creature for today.

Monday, March 24, 2014


I just got back from a weekend in Charleston, SC. It was my first time there and I loved it. The city is beautiful and the plantation gardens had me swooning. This illustration was inspired by my trip.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

100th Post!

It's only been six years, I thought it was time for a new banner on my 100th post.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

1st prize

Another piece for my portfolio.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Gone Fishing

For Illustration Friday's topic; gone fishing. I'm really happy with the way this one turned out. It's painted with gouache on hot press watercolor paper. I'm getting closer and closer to having a portfolio that I'm really proud of. I keep thinking "I just need one more piece and then I'll be ready to send it out to potential clients", but that one piece keeps turning into one more and one more. I don't know if I'll ever think it's ready.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The cat

I wanted to continue on my idea of painting my favorite bad girls, and Catwoman is probably my favorite. She's not all bad, she's not all good and what girl doesn't love jewels. Painted in gouache.

Thursday, March 13, 2014


Another page from my sketchbook. I drew these while watching Sherlock the other night.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


For illustration friday's topic spark.

Saturday, March 8, 2014


I painted these as a birthday present for my sister. She loves anything to do with sea creatures and the color turquoise.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

school bear

Just a happy little bear on his way to school. Painted in gouache.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


This is a promotional postcard that I will be sending out in the next few weeks to try and get some more illustration work.

Monday, March 3, 2014

my studio

Because I myself love to peek into people's homes, I thought I would share some of my studio space.

Sunday, March 2, 2014


I thought I would show a sample of my sketchbook. Tonight I asked John to throw out some random words and I had to sketch them quickly. Here's what I came up with.