Four for Inktober, with a Princess in a Bottle

My goodness, post every day did I say? No, that’s not possible, it turns out! However, I HAVE been managing lots of little ink projects as Inktober continues to continue!

Uli with Familiars and Mausoleum for Mona (leaning slightly left)
Each 2.5″ x 3.5″ pen and ink

Actual black and white and also some grayscale – these are noteworthy details as you don’t generally see either around these parts. Perhaps that will change. Perhaps a “Grayscales Project”. Ugh, but no time right now. Will put on back burner. :)

The Princess in the Bottle and Albert
Each 2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics, fine liners, white gel pen

The Princess in the Bottle

Once there was an evil queen who loved nothing but jewels. It is said her heart was a hard, tiny diamond. They say she caused the riding accident that took the life of the king as punishment for impregnating her with their only child, a daughter. When the baby was born, the queen was repulsed by its soft helplessness, and without so much as giving it a name, she sent it away to live with a childless crone living in the dusty hills.

Unbeknownst to many, the crone was a witch,. She named the child Marta and taught her everything she knew,  all the while filling her with tales of her mother’s greed and evil nature. When the child was thirteen, she set out with a pale amber bottle she had prepared for her mother.

When Marta arrived at the castle, she found the queen a sad, lonely wreck of a woman surrounded by her jewels, who could not even keep a hound for more than a week before it ran away into the forest. She admired her daughter’s beauty, and wished some for herself. Marta agreed she could have some, so she added a few words to those she had prepared, making her mother young again, as young as Marta herself, before capturing her in the amber bottle, and sealing the lid with a waxy resin she’d made from boiling her own hair.

Marta invited the crone to live with her in the castle. They threw open the heavy curtains for the first time in years, and tamed all the half-wild hounds that roamed the forest.

None of the hounds would go near the room that housed the amber bottle, the one with the sad, tiny princess who was once an evil queen.

(c) The Slumbering Herd, 2014


The full name for the pumpkin card is, “Albert, Upon Learning He Has Been Called Up for Jury Duty”.

Thanks for dropping in! Sorry for such a long post! And super late hello to Paint Party Friday. :)

More Pen and Ink, Inktober 5 and 6

Spotted Rooster, black & white and color versions
2.5″ x 3.5″ fine line pens, Copic markers

Inktober continues! The rooster was fun. I really tried to manage a black and white pattern that would hold up up without color. But then I added color. :D

Villa van de Paddestoel, black & white and color versions
2.5″ x 3.5″ fine liners and Copic markers

This mushroom villa actually has a bit of perspective (instead of a flat front). Still need to work on that. Meanwhile, where the heck did October come from? Yikes.

Scouting Team, from Black and White to Color

Submitted to Illustration Friday for the topic “Silence” because silence is one of a scouting team’s most potent weapons!

Scouting Team, 6″ x 6″ pen and ink with Copic markers
Inked version for Inktober and final color version

I must say this was an interesting exercise! For Inktober, I attempted a black and white image but you can see on the left where I got stuck and started to add color. I was going to fill the whole background with black, but I decided I should at least TRY an interesting background of some kind. And hopefully keep it from clashing or interrupting the figures in the foreground.

The final version seems a bit overly busy, but I don’t think it is competing with the figures, so that is one victory! I don’t tend to plan ahead, so maybe that’s something to work on. Here is one of the horse photos I used for reference.

I’ve also noticed that this orange-green-purple (red-violet, really) palette has followed me through three projects! Here they are all together. This is a departure from my usual VERY bright colors. Who knows what colors I shall use today! Maybe it will be ones that do not need to be filled. Haha.

Annabelle, Scouting Team and Stacked Housing
pen and ink with Copic markers

This is horse number 15 of the Season of the Horse project, in which I draw horses in hopes of improving that skill. Thanks so much for stopping in!

Stacked City in Pen and Ink, Inktober Day 2(.5)

Stacked Housing in progress, pen and ink with Copic Markers
Final image 2.5″ x 3.5″ art card size

Oh my gosh, you guys, it’s so much cuter in color! The black and white on the left was my #inktober production for Day 2, Inspired by this photo of Norway.

And here is a progress shot of my entry for Day 3. I thought I might work on the Scouting Team from the other day. You may notice I changed the eyepiece on the horse. I’m still not sure about this one but it’s better than the previous version. The drapery on the hood also changed, but that was less on purpose and more stray ink line.

Scouting Team, in progress
6″ x 6″, pencil and uni PIN pens

Thanks for dropping in! Hello to Paint Party Friday!

Sullen Witch, Tiny Things in Bottles & Happy Inktober!

Annabelle, 2.5″ x 3.5″
Copics, fine liners, white gel pen

It is the first of October and also the first day of Inktober! Are you going to do some? Hilariously, on the very first day of Inktober I forgot to scan this sullen little witch before adding color. For tomorrow and the rest of Inktober I hope to remember to scan new projects in ink before they get color.

And here’s some tiny bottles for a “Things in Bottles” swap at I have to do two more. Perhaps I will post them for Inktober and then color them. Or perhaps there will be other plans!

Model Home and Abandoned City
Each 2.5″ x 3.5″ ink, Copics, gel pen

New plans might be made. Some plans might be broken. And so it goes. Thanks for dropping in! The plan is to post every day this month… we shall see!

Horsing Around in Pencil

Scouting Team, 6″ x 6″ pencil sketch

I like this one because there’s more of a story with the accessories and additional figure. But this horse is more cartoonish than I would like. Don’t know if I’ll color it.


Seaworthy, 5″ x 7″ pencil sketch

I did this one last weekend and I may be done with it. I do love the tiny ship! But the rest is all too close to the edge of the paper (again) and I sort of moved on to other things. But you never know what might show back up here!

Is anyone doing Inktober? Another month-long challenge! To draw in ink every day. Thanks for visiting!

Lulu with Paper Lanterns, Copic Markers


Lulu, 6″ x 6″ Copic

Once again I was not able to stay away from the edges. Sometimes I sketch out a frame about an inch or half inch from the sides but then I ignore it! Will have to work on that. Lulu is the latest in my horse drawing adventure Season of the Horse.

I think I will do more paper lanterns because they are really cool. I’ll probably have to figure out how to make them glow, so let me know if you have any tips!

Meanwhile, I have been sick for three days and it is super sucky! I am drinking tea and hope to recover soon. Totally sucky to be sick on the weekend. Alas!

Hello to Paint Party Friday! Thanks to everyone for dropping in!

Donkey Fae, Season of the Horse


Donkey Fae, 5″ x 7″, Copic Markers

You will see in the slideshow that the background changed a TON. I started with this image for some color inspiration, but didn’t really stick to it.

I might try a feather mane with larger feathers for clearer detail at some point. Overall I can’t really decide what I think. That happens a lot a lot when I’ve spent a few hours and can’t really step back to assess the stopping point.

Linking late to Paint Party Friday! Thanks for dropping in.

Festivus, a Kingly Stallion in Pen and Ink

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Festivus, 4.5″ x 6″
Copic markers, fine liners, gel pen

Reference photo. As I was posting I realized the Pinterest link has no attribution. So, I looked it up on TinEye (reverse image search),  and he looks to be a white shire named Gustav photographed by Makarova Viktoria. I think attribution is important!

The image at the top of the post is cropped down from the original 5″ x 7″. Mainly because I botched all those chest and foreleg muscles. Mostly. I left the original in the slideshow below if you want to see. The hair is trouble, too, as it looks too stiff and not quite right. But that’s ok! Just need more practice and a little luck.

And one more thing – I sort of wish I had left it at this point:

Festivus, Sparkling
5″ x 7″ Copic markers, gel pen

Though the background needs to be finished better, I think the bright white swirls look pretty cool like this. They became more muted in the final product than I intended. The eyes are also very different. Do you have a preference in the swirls or eyes?

Thanks for dropping in!

Blue Buckskin Pony, Copic Markers


Buckskin Blue, 5″ x 7″
Copic markers, Prismacolor, Staedtler, Uni and Signo fine liners

I like the name Buckskin Blue, but originally I called this one the Festival Pony. (Please tell me if you have a strong preference one way or the other!) :)

As I mentioned previously, I am going to have a table at a small fantasy convention in November, which may help explain all the horns and bright colors. Perhaps it should have been called The Season of the Magical Horse!

Season of the Horse, the first six 5″ x 7″
Copic markers, pen and ink

Maybe you’re wondering, when will she get to like, a leg? A body? Aaaaaah, I don’t know! Soon.

Reference horse for Buckskin Blue.

Linking to Paint Party Friday a day late! Thanks for dropping in!