Watercoloring Sweet Moments in Time

FlowerGirlBackFLUFFi love painting traditional facial portraits. It has always been a big part of my art business. But i’ve really started to appreciate the subtlety and storytelling of a portrait where the face does NOT take center stage. i’m talking about figures facing away, or with heads and eyelids lowered, maybe with just the curve of a cheek visible. Painting a little one in a certain dress, a particular moment of action, or the perfect candid pose has become an obsession for me.

Screen Shot 2017-10-25 at 11.27.10 PM

i love that the artwork becomes so much more timeless, romantic, ethereal and even decorative/graphic. Paintings like these are less formal in the sense that they needn’t be placed on the stairway wall, or in the family room. They easily work on a bedroom, playroom or entryway wall to convey an emotion or set a mood.

IMG_6005

Hope you enjoy these few from this past week.

If you would like to discuss commissioning a painting like this from a favorite photo, please drop me a note via the contact page on this website. The images in this post are all examples of commissions that would run between $125-$155.  THANKS!!

Be Brave • Be Kind

Corfee-BeBraveBeKind

i doodled this little painting in my sketchbook last night. It is no more than 4×6, a teeny little frame with words. But the words have been repeating in my head since i put them down. i was talking to my oldest son about being brave in his choices and about being kind and compassionate. He noted to me that sometimes you “kinda have to BE brave to be kind.”

Yeah. He’s in 4th grade. It’s an interesting year of transition for the kids so i hear. We have noticed a bit of exclusion beginning to rear it’s head. It’s not all happy sunshine all of a sudden. i mean, it’s not AWFUL. But you can feel the shift. I think i will make a nicer, neater, LARGER version of this one and hang it on the wall by the front door. A good reminder to start each day.

Painted Words + Flowers

Kids’ nicknames are such sweet and personal kinds of things. i got it in me to start painting some nicknames in my watercolor sketchbook. Here are 2. You can grab a custom one featuring your own cutie’s nickname in my etsy shop.

BarnWoodNicknames1

i’ve also got a nice, loose and scribbly floral for ya’ll today called Blue Ink + Blooms. Find this one on etsy also…. 

Read More »

Catching up again

i think it’s just my MO. Blog regularly, settle into it. Find a rhythm. Then….get bogged down with a big project or deadline, and ignore it for a couple months. ugh. Maybe there is no use fighting it. i’m sporadic!

But, a lot has happened.  i’ve had a lovely holiday with my family, finished my new book, and survived 4 days of solo travel to a trade show in Atlanta to promote my upcoming gift line. Came home from said trip and fell ill for a solid 10 days with the worst combo of yuckiness i have ever experience. My hair hurt! : )

Recovered.

And now i’ve caught up on all the loose ends that followed that little whirlwind and i’m resetting my clock and  beginning to sketch daily and really create again. It’s an ebb and flow sorta thing.

So here’s a little smattering of images from the past couple months for a little catch up.

MillerGirlsChristmas2014

Christmas Eve with my sisters. Laura, Jodi, Lissa and me…. 

Read More »

productive days creating

Nothing can put an actual, noticeable spring in my step as much as a super-productive day of creating….even better when some of the hours are billable, right? : ) On days like that, i sorta feel like the stars are aligned, and everything will be alright with the world. i’ve got glitter under my nails by bedtime (hopefully the kids didn’t eat any with their lunch?!), and i’ve got a big stupid grin on my face.

i had one of those days yesterday. It was so needed.

i was so grateful for it.

Half client work that miraculously hit zero snags, and half creating artwork for my shop and fun projects. Do you guys also have that magical recipe? that perfect storm of little things that add up and make you feel so happy and content just to BE?  The kind of day that makes you feel like a good night’s sleep is on its way? i’m so interested to hear….for real-real! i swear, sometimes it just a day of sunshine and breezes that can do it! Or a day when the baby sleeps soundly during his nap and the house is peaceful for a bit. AH, the little things!

Anyway! Here are a few little tidbits of what yesterday’s creative sessions entailed…

~ a new print for the etsy shop

~ and the start of some sketching for the next in that same series

~ a bit of sketching for a commisioned t-shirt design

~ and little sliver of a peek at some free, BOY-FRIENDLY art you’ll be able to download over at Lil Blue Boo.

Hope you all had a great day too, and more of the same today!

 

going for it

i’ve wanted to be a published illustrator since i first realized that was an actual thing. i took a class in college called The Children’s Picture Book. My instructor was an amazingly talented artist whose experience both inspired and discouraged me. What i mean is, she was phenomenal and let us know that the kids book biz was a tough egg to crack. i thought, if doors don’t fly wide open every which way for someone like her, what chance did i have?

Skipping forward some 15 years and i kinda wish i hadn’t been discouraged to the point of paralysis. i’ve been kicking around in every possible area of the art world ever since and i finally feel like i’m finding my most comfy niche…..in painting abstracts and sketching characters. i’ve just recently started combining the two and it feels like home.

These are a few of my latest kiddos. i’m on a mission to create throngs of them in the hope that practice makes perfect. And in the meanwhile, i’m actually shaking off the paralysis and dummying up a few of the books that have been collecting dust on the shelf. It’s feels like doing a class project and not really real. DO you know what i mean?

Aaaaaanyways…..i’ll leave you with this one last little sketchy-poo; it’s me, as i’d look in my little land of sketchy girls and bright colors…..think this would this look ok on a book flap someday? Because i think i like it better than my headshot. haha. Fingers crossed.

 

Recent Sketches courtesy of instagram

 

i was a latecomer to instagram, now i couldn’t bear to live without it. the quickest and super cutest way to share vignettes of my sketches on the fly….here’s a peek inside my sketchbook of late.

…..yeeeahhhhhh…..i haven’t decided which filters are my faves yet : )

sketchbook – boho rag doll

HippieRagDoll001i just got my new  Wacom Intuos4 graphics tablet today!!!  Now i am busy trying to make my hands forget more than 13 years of digital drawing with the mouse, and hand-drawing with the pencil or pen. i must learn the ways of the stylus! It is …interesting. i’m not so good, but i’m trying to cut myself some slack since i’ve only been at it a few hours.

The wonderful, amazing, endlessly talented and sweet Stephanie Fizer has shared one or two tips with me. Her illustrations are way too cool for school. Check her out!

One thing Stephanie recommended for me was to start with a pencil drawing, scan it in and work from there. So, i made this little drawing of a Boho Rag Doll to play with. And i’ll post some progress images as i work on it on the tablet! Bear with me, and feel free to send me tips if you’re one  of folks who has already got it down-pat : )

the sketchbook – ballerina with a bicycle

Sketchbook - Ballerina with a bicycle

Here’s a little ol’ sketch i’m re-visiting for another of my children’s illustrations. The idea is there, but i have copious changes i’d like to make in addition to the ones on the post-it. Overall, i think the piece needs to be a bit more bold with scale and surreal elements. Of course, adding color won’t hurt either. i’m thinking i’ll do this one as a very sketchy ink drawing on a white page. Then there’ll be some messy watercolor washes and finally some colored pencil detail and overlays using gel pen. i love the skinny, saturated lines that gel pen can add in a final layer. So that’s the thought for now. Only time will tell what the final outcome will be on the drawing board. i’ll post the finished piece when i’m done!