Category Archives: Illustration Friday

Muriel’s Patented Pet Perch and a Motorcycle, Pen & Ink

Muriel’s Patented Pet Perch
2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics, fine liners, white gel pen

Endive the Beaked Tamarin was just a wee tomato of a pet when Muriel designed the hat contraption for him. Now that he’s grown, he is a bit more of a (literal) pain in the neck.

And here is a purple motorbike. With a couple of goofy beasts. Made for a silent auction for the Miracle Ride Foundation.

Jethro, Tully and Gertrude
5″ x 7″ Copics, fine liners white gel pen (matted)

Thanks for stopping in! Apologies for erratic posting. I suspect most of you know what that’s like!

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The Harvest Oracle, Acrylics

Face 25 of 29 Faces! Hooray, back to painting after a week or so of ink and markers.

The Harvest Oracle
8″ x 6″ Acrylics on Canvas Board

You’ll see in the progress pics below that I whited out the eyes at one point. I thought maybe instead of standard eyes I’d try some more spooky ones. The other thing I thought about doing was a ghostly figure behind her. Or some other kind of floating spirit. I ended up with a greenish sun in an alien sky. Which happily works for the topic “Space” at Illustration Friday.

Thanks for dropping in!

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Rocco and Harmony, 12 x 12 Acrylics

It is day 3 of 29 Faces, and this painting took all three of those days. I hope you’re not sick of these two dogs. They’ve actually changed quite a bit since I first posted them. And now they are done. (Or at least, this is where I’m stopping.)

Rocco and Harmony, Their Fifth Anniversary
12″ x 12″ acrylics on wrapped canvas

Also submitted for the topic “Exotic” at Illustration Friday. Harmony is from Hawaii, which is intensely exotic as far as Rocco is concerned. (He’s from the Midwest.)

Here you can see the changes. On day two I refined the left dog, and on day three, the right.

Rocco and Harmony in Progress over Three Days (click to enlarge)

I thought an eye progression would make a neat process shot.

Rocco, Eye Progress
Acrylic on canvas, detail

Thanks so much for dropping in! New art tomorrow!

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Day 20! Tiny Portraits Tell a Tragic Tale

Day 20 of the 30-day challenge.

Six Marriages, One Cat
8″ x 10″ Acrylics with a little ink and gel pen

Henrietta and Rupert were together through all six of her marriages. The second and fifth, Sydney and Lars, died quite unexpectedly. Vicious rumors accuse Rupert of having been the cause of at least one of those accidents (as well as two of four divorces). He was still robust at twenty-four years old, which was the last time anyone saw Henrietta or Rupert alive.

Submitted for the topic “Beginning” at Illustration Friday. Six marriages, two funerals, and four divorces is a lot of beginning over. Even if your loyal cat sees you through it all.

Henrietta is maiden number 145.

Hooray, it’s an 8×10! The background could use additional layers but at one painting a day and work tomorrow, it’s going to have to stop here. Don’t be surprised if many of the next ten days involve tiny portraits, apparently my new favorite thing.

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The Challenge Continues, Mostly in Ink

It is, in fact, day eight of the Thirty Paintings in 30 Days Challenge. I skipped day seven in hopes of catching up on the weekend. Work has been more tiring than usual, probably because of the recent holidays. Bah!

Posh Treehouse
2.5″ x 3.5″, Copics, fine liners, white gel pen

This stylish abode belongs to a gnomish clock maker. He is inside right now, cleaning the hands that belong to that clock window on the top floor. This is Tiny House #34.

It is for this reason that I am also submitting this illustration for the topic “Time” at Illustration Friday, from which I have been absent for ages! Topics are posted each Friday, and anyone who illustrates the topic in some way is invited to submit their link.

Hound in Progress, 5″ x 7″ acrylics

Above, we continue the gripping adventure of the unfinished hound. As you can see, I really need to reference a photo for the direction of that hair on his face. Stay tuned! Thanks for stopping in!

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Fancy Some Fancy? Old-Fashioned ATCs

Two Vintage Portaits
Each 2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics, ink, gel and sparkly pen

Two maidens full of secrets submitted for the topic “Secret” at Illustration Friday. The young Tudor maiden on the left might be a lost portrait of a young Anne Boleyn. The one on the right is called “Antonia of Barcelona” and may be the only known portrait of a mysterious young woman who practiced fortune telling for the amusement of Spanish nobility in the mid-eighteenth century.

I’ve got a new mini obsession: Victorian and other fancy dress. Which makes life difficult when one has ongoing projects for previous obsessions: Tiny Cityscapes and Tiny Houses! But I shall muddle through it. :)

Lucille of Rhodan
2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics

This is my 200th post, holy cow! The first was way back on May 1, 2011! Many thanks and welcome to new visitors and old friends! Slideshow below.

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Silver Cat and a Cat Card Retrospective

Hector Cat ATC, 2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics, Microns

A silver cat for the topic “rescue” at Illustration Friday. Hector came into the shelter with his brother Hans, two spitting fur balls about four pounds each. A kind and patient foster couple took them in and eventually adopted them both. Apparently Hans became a lap cat but Hector likes to sit on the back of the couch and lick your head.

And then I thought, these cats I’ve been doing are different than cats I have done in the past. Perhaps it’s time for a cat retrospective!

Four Early Cat ATCS,  each 2.5″ x 3.5″, Copics, Microns

Of these, though I dig the cloaks and Santa hat, my favorite is the pumpkin cat. Maybe because she looks the most like the Peterbald type cat I often use as a reference.

Four Early Middle Period Cats, each 2.5″ x 3.5″ Copics, Microns

Of these my favorite is the first one, because it’s a different style cat that really worked – though I haven’t been able to duplicate that style in quite the same way since.

Three Current Cats!

Of these I am particularly fond of Sleeping Mathilda, in the middle. I think she’s pretty cute!

Do you have a favorite? I love cats but I’m a dog person at heart so I am always interested to get a cat person opinion. (And all the other opinions, too!) Thanks for visiting!

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Psychedelic Faces with Copic Markers

Rhonda Red and Donna Disco
Each 2.5″ x 3.5″, Copics, fine liners, gel pen on smooth Bristol

Recently someone pointed out this neat exercise with intuitive faces. Although the directions are for watercolor, I figured I could try to coax a more watercolorish effect with Copic markers. So far the results have something of a hippy vibe.

For this reason I am declaring this the Power of the 1970s post, for the topic “power” at Illustration Friday. I have not abandoned the cityscapes, more of which you will undoubtedly see if you come around next time. And thank you so much to Vinyl Eraser who does terrific architectural drawings, for mentioning my 100 Cityscapes Project!


Thanks for visiting!

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The Village of Little Sprout, for Jungle at IF

The Village of Little Sprout, process and final
2.5″ x 3.5″, Copics, fine liners, gel pen on Bristol Board

Submitted for the topic “Jungle” at Illustration Friday. My latest unconventional cityscape, it was very fun to make. And I would like to live there. :)

I was also quite pleased with this cat, though she has only the most distant connection to the jungle, having moved to the Great Red Plains in her youth.

Tarabell the Theurgist
2.5″ x 3.5″, Copics, fine liners, gel pen

Shown here with her ceremonial robe and shield, Tarabell was one of the three founding members of the Lunar Cat Council. A cat called Elsbeth wears Tarabell’s robe now, with great care and reverence.

The Lunar Ceremony is open to visitors twice per year, and it is a grand and wondrous honor to see the entire Council in their ancient finery.

(Somewhat more realistic than previous cats!) Made for a trade at

Thanks for visiting! I forgot to send out my last post, so maybe take a look if a robot called Croissant sounds interesting to you.

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Sizing Him Up, Copic Art Card

Sizing Him Up
2.5″ x 3.5″, pen and ink, Copics

Croissant is the sort of name one acquires when one’s owner allows his six-year old to name his robot butler. Croissant bore it stoically, after the fashion of his kind. But perhaps it made him slightly more suspicious of visitors to the family estate. Other robots, in particular, were forced to endure quite stringent scrutiny.

For the topic “Robot” at Illustration Friday. It’s a bit abstract! And I’m not sure how the big fellow ended up with a lizardy texture. Experimenting, I suppose!

I also figured out a way to get that white on toned paper look, which is to use white gel pen in a sketchy style over lightly colored areas. In this case, lightly colored with warm gray 02 or 03. I also tried to cover up the design in the large eye with gel pen. To mixed results.

Thanks for stopping in!

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