Monday, February 28, 2011

Things I'm into right now: Sriracha

I'm not sure why, but a week ago I started adding sriracha, the vinegar-y hot sauce, to almost everything. Homemade vegetable soup and a ham & cheese brioche from Upper Crust Bakery (actual proportion compared to hot sauce) are just two things that have gotten this special treatment lately. Not shown: mac & cheese, panko-crusted salmon filet (this recipe), bean/potato/avocado breakfast taco.

Parallel pets

parallel pets: part 1
parallel pets: part 2
So, my cat and dog seem so in tune here, always looking in the same direction. And united in taking up the entire bed in the guest room (guests: I promise these are not the sheets I use for you). But here's the truth:
My cat is a tiny vampire, and if my dog looks directly at her, this is what happens. She goes for the jugular or the achilles tendon while he looks at me with sad eyes. Pretty much everyday.
Miss Lena caught mid-yawn.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Like candy for artists

Testing out my new paints today, unwrapping each little half pan like a gift. And creating a color key is both helpful and satisfying. You can see how much smaller this set is compared to my regular palette for the studio. Below, some wild horses I discovered yesterday behind Cheapo Discs.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Back in the studio after a conference

The trick after a conference (the Austin SCBWI conference was this past Friday & Saturday) is to turn all that info and inspiration into illustration momentum. This time for me, that really means updating my website. I've let it get way out of date, overthinking the big picture. And maybe depending a little too much on this blog and flickr to show more recent work.

But it's hard to stay in front of my computer when these recent acquisitions are calling my name: art books (the one on Japanese textiles just came in today), high quality watercolor paints in a travel-friendly format (these have been on my wishlist for years), and some Moo minicards I got printed for the conference (okay, these aren't studio tools, but cards this size are fun to look at). And below, my "assistant" demonstrates how appealing a new pencil can be (this one was loaned to me by the uber-talented Clint Young).
Still sifting through my post-conference thoughts, but I hope to write more on that soon.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Five years of blogging and a dog sweater

I started this blog five years ago (on the 17th) with an Illustration Friday post on the topic 'song'. Here's an illustration of my cat and dog I started last week for the IF topic 'sweater'. Between the two posts, there has been a lot of sketching and painting and learning (in fact, with this illo, I learned that you can't color in a solid black with a 3b pencil on watercolor paper). I'm thankful for all the supportive blog comments over the years from the IF community, from SCBWI friends, and from people just stopping by.

And to celebrate, here's a little something sweet I created recently for an invitation.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Silver and snow

Took a wax casting workshop the weekend before last (here), and this little guy was the result. Other than a few days in a high school art class, this was the only time I've tried making jewelry. Lesson: your first piece will be much chunkier and heavy-handed than you envision. That was true for everyone in the class. But carving the wax and shaping the metal was really fun and physically intense (all that time hunched over with dental tools and buffing wheels and such).
Just a few images from this snowy morning. Most of it has melted in the sun, AND the temperature has gotten above freezing for the first time since Monday night...almost feels like summer.