Tag Archives: monday artday

No Room at the Couch Part II, Copic Markers

Cow, Donkey, Cat, Dog, Shrew with Couch in Copics 8 x 10

The topic is “Nursery Rhyme” for Monday Artday. Until I looked it up just now to link it, I was sure it was “Fairytale”, so that will explain what comes next. (There could very well be a nursery rhyme about this story and I hope Mike at Monday Artday will be ok with that.) :D

McCalls Books, The Enchanted Princess & The House in the Forest

I wanted to do another pile of animals and I remembered a story called “The House in the Forest“, which was part of McCall’s Storytime Treasury series. Do you remember those? (It goes back to the 70s! But maybe you got some hand-me downs. Ours went to a second cousin. I may have to reacquire some.)

In any case, though I could not find a summary of the story (and my memory is a bit hazy), it was about a girl who lived in a house in the forest with all her animals. One night a magical guest disguised as a beggar came to test her, to see if she would feed herself before she fed her animals. She had a cow, a dog, a cat, a donkey… I think! She almost certainly did not have an elephant shrew in the original (but clearly should have). I don’t know if she had such a fancy couch. Probably not. I’m not sure there was any delivery service for one thing, and she wouldn’t have been able to afford it if so.

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Thank you for visiting! This is my second consecutive couch full of creatures. I was actually going to do these all in blue but decided on browns and I think blue would have been better. I also considered some fancy detail on the couch but worried that would take the focus off the critters. More outlandish experiments coming soon.

Cow face reference photo, sleeping cat reference.

Mole Dee for Monday Artday, in Copics

A Mole Named Dee in Copic Markers with digital text

You may have seen the shy tarsier named Nee in my last post, for the topic “Shiny” at Illustration Friday. And now, a mole named Dee for the topic “Moldy” at Monday Artday. Perhaps you sense a trend? Time will tell!

She was halfway out of her den before stopping for a breath, and also to rethink her evening plans. Yes, it would be nice to visit her sister Dinky for grubs and gossip about that new family of field mice. But Dinky had insisted on moving so far away, and only eighty percent of the route was reachable by tunnel.  After a moment’s more thought she turned and went back inside. A nap sounded mighty fine.

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I think I went too dark overall, from fussing with it too long. Wasn’t happy with the colors though they ended up not too bad. She’s also a tad lumpier than needed. Aaah!

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Reference photo from the University of Zurich; font is Ugly Qua.

Aardvark and the Dandelion, for Monday Artday

Aardvark & the Dandelion Wine, 8.5 x 11, Copics with digital background

Why the Aardvark Has a Long Tongue.

A very, very long time ago, before humans destroyed the delicate balance of the Earth, there were many astounding biological innovations we can only imagine today.  One such innovator was the dandelion flower which grew its own spigot so that all the creatures of the forest could enjoy its spirited liquids. (Also dandelions were way bigger.)

The aardvark, a curious creature with claws made for digging and ears made for hearing, was one of the dandelion’s most ardent admirers. However, due to his oversized claws, he was unable to manipulate the delicate handles of the spigot. So the Earth did what she did best back then (before corporate “persons” bent her to their will and made her into a grotesque parody of herself). She gave the aardvark a long and agile tongue, well able to bypass the spigot mechanism within and enjoy a bounty of dandelion wine. (The aardvark also used his new tongue to hunt in termite mounds. But that came after, of course.)

This one is starting to look a bit glassy-eyed and might pass out soon. Which is good, otherwise he wouldn’t leave any for the next guy! This illustration was created for the “Drunk” topic at Monday Artday.

And now, a slideshow:

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Hooray for sticking with one color family! I did do a bit of extra correction in paint.NET, particularly closing the mouth partly and cleaning up a few messy spots. Most of the ink was done with a teeny 0.05 Copic multiliner, though I did go back at the very end and thicken some lines with a 0.2. Apparently I am on a bit of a kick with long-snouted creatures. This will come as no surprise to those folks who visited during my “big nose” phase which, now that I think of it, may not have been a phase at all.

If you get a moment, take a peek at Topsy-Turvy Trees, the illustration blog of Nei Hatsumi. I know there are a million art blogs out there, but she’s really great but little known, so I thought I would share. I think sharing contributes to a great community. :)

Thanks for stopping in!


Reference aardvark photo from ARKive. Reference dandelion photo from Paul Franklin.

Elephant Shrew Urn Artifact for Monday Artday

Copic Markers and Multiliners, on Canson 150 lb. Fanboy Paper, with digital background and text added at the end.

The topic is Ancient Artifact at Monday Artday. To me that meant: 1. something decorative, and 2. with animals. I wanted to actually limit the color palette (rather than intend to and not do it), and also see if I could avoid my usual thick black outlines. And now, a super neat progress slideshow (my second!):

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Row one:  1. Boring urn with fancy handles; 2. a hare (they are cool!), and then something with a long nose for a handle (sort of) – elephant shrew?; 3. better elephant shrew is also GIANT elephant shrew. 4. replace lid with something simple (ugh lots of eraser marks – I really should try to keep a lighter touch). 5. Another different top. Needed stuff coming out. Boyfriend came by to ask why I put a bunch of tiny legs in there! I guess I was thinking sticks. 6. Inked in red ink because I decided to go with  browns and reds.

Row two: 7. Masquepen stage on body of urn; 8. Ooh, golden browns, how I love them. Am I a pro at shading? Not by a long shot, but doing ok. 9. Brown pen outline. I thought about stopping right here. Really! 10. I was worried about adding the red because I was liking just the browns, but I like the way the red contributed. Also went back over the outlines with a very tiny black multiliner – 0.03. 11. Needed some more design on the main part of the urn. 12. Swirly bits – hooray! Adds a bit of depth.

Row three: 13. This is what the actual page looks like, all Copics (and a couple Micron pens). I did a very pale swirl on the rabbit and tried yellow on the shrew but you can barely see it (which is fine). 14. Digital background in vibrant blue, the color I was going to do with Copics (but at the last moment I decided against using all the marker it would have needed); 15. Slightly mysterious (?) black with pinkish clouds. I wanted to do something dark and “serious” and add a kind of museum tag to the bottom. 16. The end!

Thanks to everyone for the insanely nice comments lately. So thrilled people like to look at these things. ;)

Tiny Things for Monday Artday, with Copic Markers

Tiny Things for Monday Artday, 9 x 6 Copic Markers

Tiny Things Close-up

I wanted to put this post off just a little longer in case someone hadn’t seen the Llama Genie Airship advertisement. I thought the Cat Ship was my favorite thing but now it’s the Llama Genie Airship.

So here is my “Tiny Things” entry for Monday Artday. It has dovetailed nicely with a recent fascination: hand-drawn sneakers. I swear the Illustration Friday topic “Heights” included many entries with sneakers. And I think I commented on neat sneakers in at least 5 of them –  red sneakers,  black and white sneakers, old-fashioned ones, and others – if I commented on your sneakers let me know and I will add it to this list!

So, one brightly-colored sneaker for scale.  And one flower pot treehouse, perhaps for a pixie. Or a sprite. Or a small shrew. In and around the treehouse you will find many tiny things: a tiny rope ladder and treehouse door, a tiny reading nook, a tiny table and tiny tea set,  a tiny rooftop garden, and a tiny red cat. (I may update this image with some kind of text in the empty space above the sneaker, but nothing obvious has presented itself.)

And now, the pics:

Tiny Things Sketch1

Tiny Things Sketch2

Tiny Things Ink

Tiny Things Frisket

Tiny Things Color 1

Tiny Things Color 2

Tiny Things, 9" x 6" Copic Markers

Thanks for having a peek!

Cat Ship for Monday Artday

Flagship Nepeta Cataria, Copics with Digital Background

And so it was at Monday Artday that the bi-weekly word was “Flood”. I thought I would do a ship prepared for a flood. And then I started murmuring “cat ship” under my breath. And it sounded like catsup (also ketchup), but I did not care. I was going to put a crew of dogs on the cat ship, but in the end of course it was a cat ship. For cats, man.

It started with a cat.

Cat Sketch for Cat Ship

I did look at many cat and ship photos, but used no particular photo extensively. Along the way, these happened:

Cat Ship Sketches 2 & 3

Cat Ship Inked, Cat Ship Frisket

Cat Ship Progress, 3 & 4

Cat Ship Progress, 5 & 6

I could have stopped here. I thought about it. I’m not sure I have a handle yet on when to stop adding stuff. I think this is a common problem among artists, even ones much more experienced than me (of which there are many)! This may suggest I need to do some minimalist type beasts. (Perhaps a platypus, as suggested by Gay McKinnon!) Who knows what might happen!

Cat Ship Color, 7 & 8

I messed around with a lot of backgrounds before settling on, uh, more digital clouds. I need a new bag of tricks! Or maybe just one new trick. No, actually I am really pleased with the texture and color of the clouds in the final version. But I am a tad irritated they are digital and not Copic. Alas! I hope you enjoyed your tidbit of ancient cat history. Thank you so much for taking a peek!

Re-Imagined Album Cover, Asia in Copic Markers

Re-Imagined Asia Cover, Copic Markers

It’s Re-Imagined Album Covers over at Monday Artday. My first thought was artist Roger Dean, because I like his strange creatures and alien landscapes, and I knew he’d done a boatload of album covers. I settled on this, Asia’s self-titled debut album, so I could do my first sea serpent. Thank you, Roger Dean!

Side by Side Asia Covers, Roger Dean and Cindy Dauer

I stopped short of a handmade font because I haven’t done many and I didn’t want to muck it up. I could have done it on a separate sheet but I felt like I’d taken this project as far as I was going to take it. The frame and font (Carmenta) were added digitally.

His name is Horace. If you want to know why he looks mildly irritated, it’s because the damn sea urchins get all camouflaged against the sea floor, and tickle poor Horace as he swims past. This usually causes him to shoot straight up out of the water and amuses the urchins very much. By the time he hits the top of the water he is no longer surprised, merely annoyed about forgetting to avoid the sea urchin bed again. I can’t give you any information about Roger Dean’s serpent, however. That one is a mystery.

And here’s how it went:

Re-Imagined Asia, Sketch

Re-Imagined Asia, Ink

Re-Imagined Asia, Frisket 1

Re-Imagined Asia, Color 2

Re-Imagined Asia, Color 3

I was really worried about the colors at this point. Too many colors! And the red planet idea was not so good. But it worked out.

Re-Imagined Asia, Detail 4

Re-Imagined Asia, Detail 5

Re-Imagined Asia Cover, Copic Markers

I wasn’t quite happy with the sky, or the planets, but decided to put down the pens at this point. I am pretty happy with doing something a bit outside my usual style. Not a ton outside, but a little. Thank you for visiting!


Umbrella for Monday Artday with Copic Markers

Artemis Umbrella, 9" x 6" with Copic Markers

My first challenge for Monday Artday! The challenge: “Umbrella”. An interesting creature Artemis, and I do love the flowing locks of an Afghan Hound! But I wish I’d used a larger piece of Canson 150 lb. Fanboy Drawing Pad. See, I haven’t found smaller than a 9×12 pad and my scanner only does 8.5×11, so I have to choose between not scanning, cutting the paper down slightly and wasting the edges, or cutting it in half and doing two 9×12’s.

I have been doing Illustration Friday since October 23rd, 2011, and I could not love it more (I missed a few, as to be expected). Well actually, I could love it more if spammers didn’t link there but otherwise, it is such a great thing I can hardly stand it and I cannot thank Penelope Dullaghan enough for creating it.

However, in my continuing quest to DO LOTS OF ART, I have been looking for another challenge in case I need a content nudge between each IF topic (as my goal is 2-3 new art posts per week). With all my bouncing around to the hundreds of artists at IF and their favorite links, I ran across Monday Artday a few times, and finally took the plunge.

In any case, here are some Artemis Umbrella progress shots:

Artemis Umbrella, progress sketch & frisket

Artemis Umbrella, color 1 and 2

Artemis Umbrella, 9" x 6" Copic Markers

Some things I like (she was too small to go overboard with detailing), and some less so (her right arm is odd and the angle of the umbrella/parasol is off and the cropping is not ideal). But otherwise not too bad. I didn’t mess with the background after peeling the frisket. Oh! I used a masquepen recommended by Mardi Speth and holy cow, so much better than a brush or other struggle. Thank you, Mardi!

Thanks for stopping by! (Tactful) criticism always welcome!