Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Artwork in Sprouts Magazine

I recently had one of my illustrations in the Illustrator Showcase sections of Sprout magazine.
If you're a children's book writer or illustrator this is a great magazine to subscribe to. It is "filled with top editor and agent interviews, how-to articles, illustrator tips and so much more."
To subscribe click Here

Sprouts cover art by the very talented Penny Weber

Illustrator Showcase pages 12 & 13

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Painting Progression

This is a post that I've been wanting to do for a while now and just never got around to finishing it. Below is a progression video of one of the double page spreads from Mr. Groundhog Wants The Day Off. Although the video quality isn't excellent I am still happy with the video that I was able to put together. It shows a little insight to how my paintings look from start to finish. I hope you Enjoy watching! :)

Painting Progression video
Music: Alicia Keys
As I Am (Intro)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Chalk Walk

Below are some pictures from a Chalk Walk competition in West Hartford, CT.
I recently participated in a sidewalk chalk competition which was part of the West Hartford Art League's annual ArtWalk. My idea was spontaneous. I came up with it literally that morning
and just wanted to do something happy and colorful. It was fun working on such a large scale with only 6 hours to complete it. It was awesome to see all the other artists of all ages participating and turned out to be a wonderful day! Check out more pictures from the chalk competition on the Hartford Courant website here.

Me with my drawing

Hippo in a Ball Pit
Chalk Pastel


Me with the winner of the competition Bonnie Gayle Morrill
Check out more of her amazing art work here

Monday, August 30, 2010

My Book is an App!!

I'm still not quite sure how I feel about this news, but the book I illustrated was made into an app. with Story Chimes. It is designed for both the iPhone and iPad. On one hand it is really neat to see the book in digital format with all the exciting features! On the other hand I will always love a printed book that a child can hold and flip through and hope that they never become obsolete. If you own an iPhone or iPad and would like to check it out Click Here or on the image above and get the app for only $1.99 !

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Beach sketches

Sketchbook pages from a day at the beach

Belmar Beach
archival ink pen

Friday, August 13, 2010

Commissioned Portrait from the past

The portrait below is an old commission that I had done a few years ago (before my blog existed). I came across photos that I had taken and since I wasn't able to share it before, I thought I'd do this post. I worked from a really nice vintage photograph and enjoyed painting in a simple monochromatic way, fading the background and drawing softly with the colored pencils. I thought it was a lovely image and had a wonderful time working on it.

Watercolor and colored pencils
on watercolor paper

(painting detail)

Friday, July 9, 2010

New Painting

"I have you fast in my fortress,
And will not let you depart,
But put you down into the dungeon
In the round-tower of my heart.
And there will keep you forever
Yes, forever and a day,
Till the walls shall crumble to ruin,
And molder in dust away!"

an excerpt from The Children's Hour

by: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Two Bleeding Hearts : Undying Love
10.5" x 14"

I've recently finished the above painting for an open watercolor show in New England. The painting is of two flowers appropriately called Bleeding Hearts. This plant bears heart- shaped flowers, from which a little "drop of blood" dangles at the bottom, and are often a symbol of undying love.
Working on this painting was a bit of a challenge because it had to be done in strictly aqua media and I hadn't done a full watercolor painting since college. In my other work I like to get it to a point in watercolor or acrylics and then noodle away with my colored pencils to finish it. I'm not crazy about the painting but I figured if it doesn't get accepted into the show, I will have to get my colored pencils out and finish it until I'm happy.
Below is a photograph of me working on the painting at what seems to be my most productive hour, late at night when everyone is fast asleep. It's my quiet time to spend under the peaceful light of my desk lamp with music in my ears; no distractions; and nothing else to concentrate on but my painting. :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Drawing pad in stores :)

It was a good feeling to walk into A.C. Moore today and see my artwork among all the art pads! I was told that they wouldn't be in stores until fall. After hearing from a friend that she had seen one in Massachusetts I wondered if they were in more stores. I'm not sure if they are in all art stores yet, but they are in A.C. Moore :)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Sneak Peek

"Opportunity is missed by most people because
it is
dressed in overalls and it looks like work."
-Thomas Edison :)

I'm pretty excited to share a new piece that's on the drawing table. It's a self promotional painting that I've wanted to do for a while. Now that it's in the painting stage I'll work hard to finish it soon so I can share the whole story behind this little creepy guy :)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Camping Trip

A couple of sketchbook pages from the Memorial Day weekend camping trip.

Myles Standish State Forest, MA
watercolor and archival ink pen

Camp Fire
archival ink pen

Pictures from the Book Expo America

I had a wonderful time at the Book Expo and thought I would share some photos from those two days. I finally got to meet the author of my book; met some of my favorite illustrators; and had a great time signing books. I hope that I am lucky enough to have this opportunity again someday.

With the Author of my book, Pat Stemper Vojta

Jacob K. Javits Convention Center

A small section of the Children's Pavillion

Raven Tree Press Booth

Another view of the huge Jacob K. Javits Convention Center

Even got a picture with Olivia the pig :)

Monday, May 24, 2010

Book Signing!

I will be doing my first book signing at the Book Expo America 2010 this Wednesday, May 26th! The book expo is held at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York, NY. I will be signing Mr. Groundhog Wants the Day Off books from 2:00-3:00pm in the Raven Tree Press booth #2666, located in the Children's Pavilion in the Exhibit Hall. If you're in the area, stop by and see the "largest publishing even in North America." Come get a book signed and see "everything new and exciting in the world of books"! Hope to see you there. :)

Monday, May 3, 2010

New Website!!!

I'm happy to announce that my website has finally been updated with a fresh new look!! Click below to visit. I'll be updating it more often so don't forget to check back soon for new art! :)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

More Team Dawg Paintings

Back in January I had done a post on a character I painted for Team Dawg Inc.
Lately I was asked to paint the coach character and a baseball field background that can be used together or separately. Here is what the finished pieces looked like.

Some Exciting Mail!

In the past few weeks I've received some very exciting mail. First a box of Strathmore drawing pads with my illustration printed on them! And then a box of Mr. Groundhog books! It was very exciting to finally see the books printed and bound. It's also neat to see how the art work looks when it is reproduced.
The Strathmore pads will be available in art stores in the Fall, and Mr. Groundhog books are available here along with some fun activities and book reviews. :)

Figure Drawings

Some drawing from a recent figure drawing session. It was the first time that I had the experience of drawing a model that used props. It certainly was interesting and something I need more practice with.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Pet Portrait

A drawing that I recently finished for my Aunt's birthday, of her puppy Tiki. :)

colored pencil on toned paper
8.5" x 11"
March 2010

the drawing in its mat frame

Friday, February 19, 2010


Thank you so much to everyone who voted for my cover art! It's official, I've been chosen as one of the grand prize winners for the Strathmore illustration contest! Click below to visit the Strathomore website and see all the winners. Look out for the Premium Recylced pads in art stores this fall!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Sketch of Beaker

Above is a drawing that I did a while back of one of my favorite cats, Beaker! When I came across it, it reminded me of being cozy and curled up while it's cold outside. (and thinking of all this snow made me wanted to post it) It also reminded of how I used to sketch a lot more so I hope that I can do that more often. There is also an inspiring drawing quote by Cennino Cennini that always seems to make me want to pick up a pencil and sketch, and it goes like this:

"Do not fail, as you go on, to draw something every day, for no matter how little it is, it will be well worth while, and it will do you a world of good. "(Cennino Cennini)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Happy Groundhog Day!

b&w vector created by Jake Morrill

In honor of Groundhog Day here is a coloring page from my upcoming book. The coloring page will eventually be available on www.raventreepress.com as a part of free activities for this book.
On another note Phil's prediction today was :

*But don't be mad at the groundhog because it's not his fault ;)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Team Dawg Character

Below is a recent painting I finished for Team Dawg Inc. This is one of the main characters in their children's book series, Bobby Dawg. He is the Pawstown Police Officer who, "loves his family, career, and friends. He also dreams of being a major league ball player."
I sometimes forget how important it is to figure out a complete drawing before beginning to paint. But when I do remember it sure makes the painting a lot easier. I had worked on a few character designs before illustrating Trevor's Bully Problem and after the book was done I was asked to draw Bobby Dawg in a baseball uniform. I hope to share in some upcoming posts more character designs that I had drawn for Team Dawg.

"Paint as you see and be accurate in your drawing: the whole secret of your art is there."~William Bouguereau

Friday, January 15, 2010

Commissioned Portrait

A commissioned portrait painted for the holidays.

Watercolor and colored pencil
8.5" x 11"
December 2009

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Drawing on Little St. Simons Island, GA

On a recent trip to Georgia I had the pleasure of going out to Little St. Simons Island for a day of fishing. It was a beautiful place! During some moments of down time I couldn't help myself, so I grabbed my sketchbook and drew my fishing reel.

"I have learned that what I have not drawn I have never really seen, and that when I start drawing an ordinary thing, I realize how extraordinary it is, sheer miracle. " ~Frederick Franck, The Zen of Seeing.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The polls are now open!!

I'm very happy to say that I've been selected as a finalist in Strathmore Artist papers' How Do You See Green Contest!! My artwork along with nine other finalist is featured on the website during the month of January. Visitors will be able to vote for their favorite piece of art. The top two pieces will be selected by popular vote and their artwork will be featured on a cover of our premium recycled pads. Please visit http://www.strathmoreartist.com/contest/professional.html or CLICK on the image above and cast your vote.