Thursday, November 15, 2012

Illustration Friday: Tree

Dobutsu Kannon by pictoteeno
What's this? A double posting? I'm pretty late with getting this posted. For this week's Illustration Friday subject, I've decided to submit my Dobutsu Kannon. This is a modern Bodhisattva devoted to the care of suffering animals, and grants eternal rest to pets. I really like the idea that someone intercedes on behalf of our furry children.

"Paper" Doodles

I've been very bad lately, missing out on the last few Illustration Friday topics. There are "things afoot" as they say. To tide you over: a few digital doodles. These were quickly sketched using an iPad app called "Paper". My brother-in-law was showing it to me and I could not put it down. It was not a very sophisticated/deep app but it had enough tools to allow some really great doodles -- good for me as I tend to labor over analog work in my sketchbook.

This, and other art apps that I've seen, kind of make me want an iPad! Now if only I could justify the price...

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Illustration Friday: Haunt

Halloween 2012 by pictoteeno
Happy Halloween! For this week's submission for Illustration Friday, I'm using a piece I did earlier this month. It stretches the concept of "Haunt" but I think the overall mood might bring that to mind?

Could this girl be a witch releasing her familiar off on an All Hallow's Eve mission? Or maybe she's simply releasing a rescued bat during it's normal hours of activity. Either way, I leave it up to you to make up your own story!

Have a safe and spooktacular Halloween!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Illustration Friday: Sky

Nite Sky Witch by pictoteeno

Here's this week's submission to Illustration Friday! During the Halloween season, this witch flies around in her bewitched pumpkin painting the night sky with stars.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The lull in-between projects

I'm so used to working against requirements and deadlines set by others that I constantly have problems setting my own deadlines for my own projects. Once I start an image or a project it's easy to keep moving forward. I'm excited by seeing the progress being made and that keeps me motivated to continue. But as I finish, and don't have another idea ready to go from brain to page, I find the wheel of progress grinds to a halt. I've been trying to kick start it up again by doing my usual - look at other artists and what they're doing, flip through the art books of my favorite illustrators, skim-read my novels. Maybe I'll find an older sketch and bring that up to date.

I'm sure I'll think of something soon...sometimes just talking about being uninspired helps overcome that block.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Illustration Friday: Water

SpookyMansion08 by pictoteeno
Here's my submission for this week's Illustration Friday topic of water.
This is from a pen & ink series of sketches called Spooky Mansion which was directly influenced by "The West Wing" by Edward Gorey. Gorey has been one of my favorite illustrator/authors ever since I saw his original opening for Masterpiece Theater on PBS. I was always particularly drawn to his images which always seemed to capture the moment right before or right after a dreadful occurrence.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Astrology Witch

Astrology Witch by pictoteenoFinished the 4th witch in the series! I can't decide if the window behind her is full of stars or snow...I'm also not sure if the overall composition of this piece works as successfully as I wanted - it's lacking the slight wonkiness of the others in the series. Oh well, always learning & growing!

Friday, October 12, 2012

New piece up on deck

Getting ready to start on another in my "witchy women" series. I'm really enjoying this smaller format - it makes the completion time feel more manageable. I also discovered that I can print directly to the watercolor paper instead of having to use graphite transfer paper thus doing multiple things at once: saving the extra transfer step, preserving some fine line detail that I always lose when using the transfer paper, allowing me to skip the final line step, especially if I remember to print correctly. I hope to get this one finished this weekend!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Illustration Friday: Mirror

Scrying Witch by pictoteeno
Whew -- finally finished this week's submission for Illustration Friday. I did wind up changing the background quite a bit, and it went through several iterations before I settled on the final details.

Monday, October 8, 2012


Here's the start of a new piece...still not sure if this will make it to painting stage or if I'll abandon it and start something fresh.

I've been kicking around this idea in my head for the last couple of days and could see part of the image in my mind's eye. I probably should do a bunch of thumbnails to work out some of the compositional elements but I find that much of what ends up on paper is something that I work out in my head while I'm walking the dog, or taking a shower, or more often, right when I'm falling asleep. Anything missing usually works itself out as I'm sketching the initial drawing. Today, however, I got about this far in and then everything that I started to add to the background just didn't work. Thank goodness for kneaded erasers. I hope tomorrow will be a better day at the drawing table.

Autumn colors are starting to peek out at my local neighborhood park. I actually remembered to bring my phone with me today on the late morning walk so here's a quick pic.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Potion Witch

Potion Witch by pictoteeno
Another watercolor piece completed in celebration of Halloween! This is a companion piece to the Spell Witch.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Why a blog now?

It's been a very long time since I thought seriously about being a professional illustrator. I've worked in several industries that used graphic designers, conceptual designers, industrial designers, 3D artists, texture artists, etc. etc. I've had to review online portfolios and read resumes. I've had the thrill of flipping through some incredible sketchbooks. And I've always walked away convinced that I couldn't do what they did, that I didn't have the time, or the discipline, or the drive. But a small voice buried deep under years of denial kept saying "but you still love it, don't you?". I found myself looking at other artists' blogs, which led to more artist blogs, which led me to realize that maybe I could actually do it. I've listed some artist blogs that for different reasons are ones that helped me get off my butt and back to the drawing table. (This is by no means a complete list, and will probably be revised many times.)

I hope in the coming weeks and months to upload more current artwork and see where this journey leads. And I hope that you'll come with me.

Thursday, October 4, 2012


Spell Witch by pictoteeno

To kick off my blog about my illustration efforts, here's my first submission to Illustration Friday's weekly topic. This week: Book