Sunday, August 23, 2015

Patterns and play

My creative work the last few months has mostly been writing and some sketches to go along with those stories, so not the kind of thing I'd share here. Also not the kind of thing that lets my pastels (and my beautiful turquoise art desk) come out to play, so I thought I'd play around a little today. Enjoy!

Saturday, May 23, 2015


The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (of which I am a member) recently launched a monthly prompt for illustrators. The prompt word for June is Bounce, and this is my entry. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Redleg Annual (and Happy Opening Day!)

The last two years, I've illustrated the cover of an e-book called the Redleg Annual, which previewed in eloquent and entertaining fashion the Cincinnati Reds of 2013 and 2014.

For this year's zine, which is still available for purchase as any number of e-formats HERE (seriously, it's only $5...GO HERE!)... I did two interior illustrations instead and got to step into the weird and whimsical zone a little, and it was a ton of fun.  

For an article on Reds All-Star catcher Devin Mesoraco (titled "Devin Goshdang Mesoraco") I was tasked with envisioning a Lovecraftian creature that could appropriately accompany an article containing lines like this:  
Devin Mesoraco is feared. By pitchers, sure, but also by children, beloved family pets, and young Victorian-era adventurers unjustly denied their inheritance. There is a rumbling of the earth and a black skein over the sun when Devin Mesoraco digs in. (words by Asher Kohn)

This one's a bit experimental for me, because I used a larger variety of media than usual.  This one included gouache, Colourfix primer, pencil, permanent marker, and pastels.

And for an article introducing new Reds players, I got a little punny welcoming Mr. Marlon Byrd, because sometimes I just can't help myself:

Today is Opening Day for my Reds and most of the baseball world, so happy 2015 season to all you baseball fans out there, and happy lovely spring day to everyone else!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Rally caps! (Spring training 2015)

Pitchers and catchers report today to Goodyear, Arizona, kicking off spring training (and therefore the 2015 baseball season!) for my favorite team.  Since 2008, I've marked this day by sharing a baseball illustration.  After several years spotlighting players for this annual illustration, this year I want to celebrate fans.

(I'm also using this an opportunity to play around with some character design for a picture book manuscript I have in the works.  This devoted baseball fan is named Ruby, and she's my protagonist.)

So let's hear it for the fans.  Fans who care about the game way more than is reasonable, who cheer on their team through good times (1999! 2010! 2012!) and bad (2000-2009), who follow hundreds of games over 6+ months, and who (like Ruby here) put on their rally caps in critical dramatic moments because they can't stand to not do something to influence the game they love so much.

[Memory lane:  200820092010201120122013, 2014]

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Books Read in 2014

Here we are, halfway through the second month of 2015, and I haven't yet done my annual check-in on the past year's reading.  I didn't realize it until the end of the year, but I actually read very few books in 2014.  Still, there were some good ones mixed in.  My favorites are in bold.  Looking forward to good books (and MORE books!) in 2015.

  • The Night Gardener, by Jonathan Auxier
  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman
  • The Magicians, by Lev Grossman
  • Wildwood Imperium, by Colin Meloy
  • The Greenglass House, by Kate Milford
  • West of the Moon, by Margi Preus
  • Eleanor and Park, by Rainbow Rowell
  • The Wainscott Weasel, by Tor Seidler
  • Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, by Robin Sloan
  • Veronica Mars:  The Thousand-Dollar Tan Line, by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham
  • The Interestings, by Meg Wolitzer
  • The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson
  • The Interrupted Tale, by Maryrose Wood


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