Winter scrabblings

Oy! I just noticed how long it’s been since I updated my blog. A long time (Happy Hallowe’en again everyone!) I’ve had a lot of projects (Village by the Sea! Fireside Magazine #3! And others) not to mention Thanksgiving and Hanukkah and the impending time-crisis that is Christmas.

I don’t really have much new to show or talk about, but I feel bad for the blog-neglect so here: some things from my sketchbook! 

Dragon FalconerPeacock Dragon

Have a wonderfully dragonish day and I’ll be back!
(Soon, I promise.)

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Hallowe’en approaches…

And to celebrate, and because it turns out I’m not the only one who loves them, I’ve drawn some bats!

Little brown myotisFruit bat

A little brown bat, because those are the ones that you mostly spot in the skies around here, fluttering against the summer twilight like determined black butterflies. And an Egyptian fruit bat, because they’re so objectively cute that I think even your average chiroptophobe has to find them endearing. Happy October everyone!

Beastly

A sketchbook spread using the idea of ‘beauty and the beast’ as a stepping off point.

Beauty and the Beast

I’m working on a number of things that can’t really be shared until the projects launch, so this is all I have to show for myself at the moment. Enjoy?
(You can click it for a full view, since my blog’s format wasn’t wide enough for it. Any suggestions for stock wordpress themes that are more accommodating to art?)

(Oh, and it’s ebony pencil in a moleskine sketchbook, for anyone curious)

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!

Literary influences

Do you remember the first book that really grabbed you? The one that fell apart in your hands from constant rereading and spring-boarded you off into your career as an obsessive lifetime reader? (I’m assuming you’re a reader here, because I most certainly am and who would visit my blog if they’re not like me at least a little? Right?)

Well, mine was A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. LeGuin. I have no idea why my mom decided to bring it home from the library for me that day. To the best of my knowledge, she’s never read it herself (though she can feel free to contradict me if I’m wrong, or fill in the story if she remembers) and it certainly wasn’t a new release in 1992 when I was 7.

But whatever the reason, there it was. And that story, of a young and talented wizard whose life and career nearly end at the hands of his own hubris, really got to me. I remember carrying around laminated bookmarks I’d made myself, painstakingly copying out the poem and runes from the front of the book. I hunted down the trilogy, the copies with my favorite cover art of course (these ones), and still have them on my shelf to this day.

Yet for some reason, I think this might be the first illustration I’ve ever done of Ged.

Ged and Hoeg

(Bigger, better view here)

Outdoor drawing days

Spring, waiting just around the corner all winter long, has truly sprung on us here in the Mid-Atlantic. We’ve had highs above 70°F for most of the week which — while troubling in what it might mean for the coming summer — makes for good outdoor sketching weather.

So here… some sketches!

Bald cardinal

This poor be-mited chap's been getting progressively more pathetic looking every time he visits our feeder. He's doing good otherwise, though. Has a mate, is king cardinal of the territory. Just... has a tonsure.

Bird dragon

I've been noodling around with this image for weeks now, playing with colored pencil shading and blending techniques.

Seal person

Was considering possible mermaid types while sitting and watching Evan fix the weather stripping on his old volvo. Doodled this in the process.

If you’d like more art, go take a peek at my website. I just updated it. :)