digital painting

Popsicles.

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Last week the heat was surprisingly tenacious here in BC. My kids and I gathered on a beach towel in our backyard after they had jumped in their kiddie pool for the 76th time. I brought out popsicles for them and smiled as they dripped gleefully all over themselves, reminded that even though 2020 has been so strange and hard – they’ve had a pretty great summer. (Granted, life is easier at 2 and 4 years old.)

I drew this, trying to capture that moment. It took some tries and erasing of many layers and perseverance to get this out of my head properly. It’s not exactly what I envisioned, but it will do. ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

Getting unstuck.

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The manuscript for my YA memoir, “Still Stace” is DONE. I can’t believe the metamorphosis this story has undergone since my very first pitch (and I am so grateful for my editor!)

The version I originally pitched in Feb 2019 (which got me my agent) was about 1200 words. I envisioned it as a picture book. Now, as a YA illustrated memoir, it’s over 43,000 words! I never planned to write so much, or so honestly, about reconciling my sexuality and my faith – but I am so grateful for this opportunity.

Now that the writing is done, the hard part begins. THE. DRAWING. It’s one thing to write about tough and vulnerable experiences – now I gotta draw them. This weekend I sat down to start my roughs for the first chapters, and felt the familiar spiral of doubt hit me. How can I do this? Am I good enough to do this? …I can’t do this.

I got stuck. This happens to me when I am working on something I feel a lot of importance behind. The only recipe that works to get unstuck, is:

1 – get outside, preferably on my bike, stare at the mountains, sweat, lip sync some amazing music

2 – come home and create a piece of art with no expectations or judgement

Here’s what I created to get unstuck. And it worked – I drew most of yesterday and got the first section of roughs done! (Sometimes it’s a combination of letting go, and just being kinder with ourselves.)

This is my fav street in Maple Ridge to bike down, and I loved how the late summer evening light was hitting these trees. I had to draw it. ๐Ÿ™‚

This series of images came from listening to theย lyricsย ofย  “Be Alright”ย by @dantebowe and @amandalindseycook. I have found great encouragement from it, I hope you connect with it too!

Blippi’d

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My son Hudson is OBSESSED with Blippi. Can all the Mamas & Papas raise your hand if you have a toddler who is requesting to watch Blippi AD NAUSEAM?! (Send wine and headphones.)

My only appropriate response to this is to draw him in his glory wearing Blippi’s garb. Even when he asks for his children’s vitamin (which are Frozen-shaped because he has a very opinionated older sister), he pulls out ANY shape and yells, “BLIPPI ONE!”

Gosh, I love 2-year-olds.

HudsonBlippi

Side note…. I wonder if Blippi has any kids books out there and needs an illustrator…..

“Stranger Things” S3 art!

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Oh my word, who else loved the most current season of “Stranger Things”, in all of its’ 80s mall glory?! It was just so fun!

I was really inspired by the first season to do my own Golden Book concept – you can see that here. I also just really loved the characters, so I did some ink sketches of them all – you can see that here.

I was too busy to do stuff for season 2, but for season 3 I just had to do some art. I have plans to do at least an illustration from each episode, but so far I did these two from episode 1.

My version of Scoops Ahoy with Steve & Robin:

episode1.jpg

A quick paint study of the cinematography – I loved this shot from episode 1!

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Robson-inspired sketches

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Since I have been home taking care of Robson the last few months, AND trying to keep up with my full-time gig – doing any additional sketching seems like a pipe dream! BUT… once in a while, I am able to carve out a precious hour or two to do some art for myself.

Here are a few I have done so far:

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Robson in the Woods admiring the trees as she does on our daily walks. ๐Ÿ™‚ [digital]

 

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Robson running around with multiple sweaters all day. Sometimes she wears 3 at a time. ๐Ÿ™‚ [digital]

 

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Robson and I go to the same park almost every day near our house. I love looking at this massive tree that reminds me of a mysterious cave. I finally drew it from memory. ๐Ÿ™‚ [digital]

“Downside Up” book is for sale NOW!

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This is exciting news for me! The book that my friend Peter Walker wrote, “Downside Up”, and I have illustrated for almost two years is for sale on Amazon NOW! It is also available in Barnes & Noble bookstores in the States! You can buy it Amazon.com or Amazon.ca ๐Ÿ™‚ And if you like it, please feel free to leave a review!

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This is the first project that I have worked on that I have fully been able to combine my art and my faith, and I am so excited it is available for purchase! It’s also the first published book I have illustrated ๐Ÿ™‚

Feel free to like the Facebook page for more updates! Here is a synopsis of the book: “A picture book for grown-ups! Satire and humor in rhyme and verse about Jesus, the church, and what’s gone wrong! Is there any reason for hope?”

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A couple teaser illustrations:

The front and back covers:

Last sketches of 2015

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This October – December was the busiest on record, what with starting a new show at the studio, piles of freelance, and selling and buying a house…… so sadly my sketches took a backseat. I managed to squeak out a few, here they are!

For Inktober 2015:

A couple sketches in time for “Back to the Future” Day! [Brush pen on Moleskine sketchbook.]

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A couple sketches of some of the regular dogs that frequent our studio ๐Ÿ™‚ [Brush pen on Moleskine sketchbook.]

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lando

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And of course a sketch of our cat Mowgli in his favourite position.

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I managed to fit in two commissions done as Christmas gifts for clients. The first one was for a couple who had just gotten married and loved trees, hence the background. The second was for someone who is a composer. Both digital.

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Corey_FINAL

I’m gonna be a Mom. :D

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We announced our big news on the social medias today, and I did this little illustration for the occasion.

Our hearts are dancing, and we breathe in these moments of joy after a long journey.ย  ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

 

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Winery-inspired commission

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A friend contacted me to do a commission for her and her hubby who were going to celebrate an anniversary. They share a love of visiting wineries, so she told me that she would love to have that incorporated somehow into it.

She also said that their phrase they always say to each other is “That’s amore!”, so I wanted to make sure I included that somewhere.

Here is what I came up with!

Rough sketch [digital]:

missi_andy_roughFinal colour version [digital]:

missi_andy

Character designs for unnamed project

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I was asked to do a few exploratory character designs for a project, and here is what I came up with! I tried a few different styles, and it was fun just to draw a few different versions of the character I had in my head.

Brush pen and pencil crayon:

polly_A

 

Watercolour:
polly_B

 

Digital:
polly_C

 

Brush pen & pencil crayon:
polly_D

 

Brush pen & colerase pencil:
polly_E

 

Brush pen & pencil crayon:
polly_F