The freelance mindset

One of the dangers of setting your own schedule: it’s really easy to allow weeks to slip by without noticing. I’ve been pretty loose with scheduling lately, as a follow-up to a contract that had me pretty rigidly locked in for a few weeks, and it has not done good things for my timeliness.

For one, I forgot to blog a mention about my guest post over at Inkpunks, which outlines some basics of website design (applicable even to lazy folks like me who rely upon blogs and premade themes to do the bulk of our work).

Today Evan’s guest post went live on Inkpunks, in which he talks about his struggles in finding a comfortable space he can feel creative in, even in cramped living situations.

And this past weekend, my little brother graduated from JMU! In an outdoor stadium, in the pouring rain! Congrats Warren! I’m so proud of you. I hope your celebratory 3 day, 50-mile canoe and camping trip in the pouring rain still manages to be extremely enjoyable despite everything.

And just for fun, something new from my sketchbook:

Wizard + cat

Happy agenda management, everyone!

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Cats + owls = win, apparently

For some reason I’ve come back to this again, a merger between owls and cats. I guess I like rethinking this particular combination. It’s an easy blend.

Watercolor and brown india ink on 4 x 6″ Strathmore watercolor paper.

Owlcat, final versionInterested in earlier stages? After the cut!

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Rest up

Is what the orthodontic surgeon told me to do. But since it’s never so hard to take it easy as when you’ve been commanded to do it, well… here are those ink sketches I posted yesterday. But colored.

Llama deer person... in color!Cheshire Cinnamon, coloredNow I’m going to go lie down, because the painkillers are making me dizzy and tired. But I’ll probably make more art tomorrow.

Toothless

I’m supposed to be taking it easy today. I had all four of my wisdom teeth pulled yesterday. And while it wasn’t as terrifying an experience as I’d expected, I’m still in a fair bit of pain and a little out of it from the high dosages of vicodin I’m taking every 4-6 hours. But of course being told you’re supposed to relax makes it all the harder, so instead I’ve been knocking about online and doing minor design work for most of the day.

But then I remembered this blog, and the fact that I hadn’t posted any art on here since my trips to the museum. I recently, on Eric Orchard’s recommendation, acquired a new pen nib to replace the several I utterly destroyed while making these pieces. So far it’s held up really well, and on top of that it’s been producing just the sorts of lines I’ve really been wanting from my pens anyway. Here’s my first stream-of-consciousness ink test with it:

Llama Deer personAnd at the same time, I went and found my initial ink test for my lovely tachikawa sepia fountain pen (which I also destroyed, and had to order a new one of). It was sketched back when Cinnamonopteryx had been living with us for just a few days, and still needed to be babysat in our room or else he’d start crying. So, rather influenced by him:

The Cheshire CinnamonI plan on painting both of these at some point soon.

Oh, and if you happen to be on Google+, I’ve been fairly active on there lately. Find me!

Advice to artists

Just look at that face, those eyes glowing with mischief.

Be sure to secure all pens, brushes, nibs, watercolor pans, or shiny-small miscellany if you have one of these things in your house. Yesterday we discovered three brushes he’d stolen, two of them lodged beneath a chair leg and another beneath the edge where our wooden floor meets kitchen tile. One of them was my good liner, which had been missing for months and I’d finally broken down and replaced the week before.

They let you think that you can adopt a cat, pay for its shots and checkups and food and litter, then that’s it. Relatively easy, cheap pet. They don’t tell you about all of the hidden costs, the things they steal and hide, or eat, which need replacement. Beware of cats! They are invariably going to be trouble!