Showing posts from 2009

Wedding Invitation

So the past month has flown by and been filled with wedding planning galore. Here is the final illustration for my invitations. I've had such a blast designing my own artwork that it has inspired me to offer custom designed wedding invitations as a service for other couples. I'm hoping to have an etsy shop up soon!

Bedtime Stories Opening Reception

This Thursday was my Gallery opening for Bedtime Stories. It was a wonderful event. Staying with the theme of the show being focused on Children's Book Illustrations, I decided to make the event extra-kid friendly.

I started with making the hors devours based on kid food. This included candy corn, goldfish, finger peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, milk with cookies, and cupcakes (with a dog-theme decor).

In keeping with my Mattie Story, I also chose to make the event DOG FRIENDLY! We didn't have too many pooches stop by, but the few that did really made the place light up. Fellow dog artist, Barbara Pence, and her English Lab Puppy, Bailey, seemed to enjoy it...

Galleries can sometimes be a sterile place, and in order to contradict that atmosphere I decided to dress up the place. I chose a few items in order to create a happy and friendly setting for dogs and kids alike.

I also dressed up my promo-material table. I think all of the accesories made the whole room a much …


One of the benefits of being an illustrator when you're planning a wedding, is creative freedom over all paper products!

I had a great time designing these... there are a few special regulars on my e-maling list that should be receiving a hard copy soon!

Want to see a little of my web design? Check out

Bedtime Stories - Gallery Opening

So I've decided to do a show featuring my Mattie Story artwork and a few other pieces. The show is called, "Bedtime Stories" since it's all about Children's books. I'm sharing the space with another kid's book author and illustrator, so it should be fun.

I'm really excited to do this show! I'm hoping it'll be a good kick-start to trying to get my books published.

It will be at the 688 Gallery in San Francisco. The exact address is 688 Sutter Street. The show opens on a Thursday, November 5, at 5:30. The opening will last until around 7:00 pm that evening. The exhibit will be up until November 30 in case folks miss the opening.

Hope to see a lot of familiar faces there!!

A Few "New" Mattie Scenes

Look how happy Mattie is eating her peanut butter biscuits!! YUM!

I'm sure that puppy knows that Mattie's bark is worse than her bite...

Here are a few more paintings I decided to rework. Again, I'm pretty happy I tackled these paintings again and improved upon what I had done in the past.

Bedtime Puppy Love

I was never really happy with the original of this piece, and I've finally finished the re-do. I like this one a lot better, it's just a lot more solid than the original, with the same puppy-child tenderness. Hope folks like it!

Importance of Anatomy

One thing I've noticed is that the more knowledge I get about the way things work from the inside, the better they look from the outside.

This is especially true of anatomy. Check out this canine study I did of my own pooch. It's not super detailed, but enough so that my own brain can process where certain joints meet up, and how muscles wrap around those bones.

Pretty interesting stuff.

Elephants & Camels

Now that things have settled down a bit... I've decided to make more regular visits to the Oakland Zoo and keep my animal life drawing fresh. Today was a perfect zoo day. The weather was outstanding, and the place was practically empty! This made for calmer animals and more enjoyable drawing.

I spent time today focusing on elephants and camels. Usually the elephants hang back in their enclosure, but today they came right up to the fence. At one point it felt like I could pet them! I did a lot of sketching and did a final drawing with graphite and watercolor pencil. It was a lot of fun.

On my way out, I couldn't resist spending some time with the camels. I had tried to draw them several times during my class, but the space isn't very condusive to drawing due to the fact it's on a slope, no bences, and high fences so nowhere to lean you sketchpad. But today with the lower numbers and amazing weather, I just planted myself on the ground next to the female camel and…

Doggie Window Dressings

So many folks are aware that I spent my time during graduate school working at Dog Bone Alley. I was fortunate enough to be able to do all of the window displays and many interior displays during my time there. I've decided to include a set featuring several of these windows on my flickr account. For a little change of pace take a look.

Click here for Dog Bone Alley Window Displays

New Business Cards

As I embark upon my career in the professional world, I felt like it was time to revamp my business cards. I've gone through several drafts, and I finally have come up with cards I like.

Website Updates

Check out my site for Mattie Story illustrations all together and a bit of a new look!


The Cover

Who could resist a book with this mug on the cover? Not me!

At the Dog Park

One of my favorite places, the dog park. I think it's Mattie's favorite place, too! I hope this doesn't ruin the happy ending!

Dog Days of Summer-Mutt Lynch Winery Event

Good News! The Mutt Lynch Winery has decided to feature ALL of the finalists for the wine label contest at their fundraiser event coming up. There will be a signed and framed print for sale of CaberNOSE Merlot with all the proceeds donated to Healdsburg Animal Shelter. I am always excited to help homeless pets, so I jumped at the chance to be a part of this.

The event takes place on August 8-9 and it's only $10 for entry fee. Dogs enter free! Mattie and I plan on making an appearance on August 8th and I hope to see some familiar faces there. Info at Dog Days of Summer Event

Making Friends

At this point, Mattie is making friends with her new puppy companion. This little blondie is loosely based on one of Mattie Chicago friends, Daisy. Nobody knows fun like a "goldie-doodle..."

A New Puppy

For everyone who didn't know their rescue dogs as puppies, this one is for you! I got Mattie when she was over one year, and I never knew her as a puppy, but in this illustration I got to at least imagine how adorable she was. This is the first page of the book.

"New Customer!" Finished

Here's the finished painting for the drawing I posted last week. I really wanted Mattie and the little girl (Kelly) to be like a couple peas in a pod for this picture. I just love the bond between children and their pets. There's nothing like it.

Title Page

This is my title page for the Mattie books. Anybody want a border collie?

A New Customer!

This drawing was a LONG TIME coming. I started it in the fall semester, but I didn't really have the skills yet to execute it the way I wanted. I finally got it down, and now it's ready to paint.

Sleepy Time

Here is the last page of my book. Makes me sleepy just to look at it. I have a few minor details yet to do, but it's pretty much there.

Puppy Love

This is a little character piece I've been working on for my website, cards, and other identity I might need. It's shaping up well, I think.

Wine Label Contest

Dog Art Today announced a wine label contest for Mutt Lynch Winery about a month ago. I decided to take this opportunity to work on something a little different and fun for my portfolio. The wine it will be used for is a Meritage, which is a combination of Cabernet and Merlot. I call this painting, "CaberNOSE knows Merlot" A percentage of the wine sales will go to a local animal shelter.

Log onto Dog Art Today in order to vote for your favorite label. Voting happens from June 15-19. Here's hoping I end up in the top ten!

Website Updates

As I've been working on getting my postcards together, I decided it was time to update my website. You'll see my newest illustrations, and a much needed reorganization of my bio and blog link pages. I think it's a little easier to get needed info now.

Check it out!

"Oh no, Mattie!!"

This illustration has been a LONG time coming... but I think it's worth it in the end. There might be a few final touches I have yet to do, but it's close to finished. Mattie is being a bit naughty here! No worries, that pup will put her straight.

Alice and the Cheshire Cat

This is my final of the Alice and the Cheshire Cat scene. I decided to run with a murkier day outside, instead of the sunny day I had originally planned. The happy bright sunshine just didn't fit with the mood of the cat. I'm enjoying using this new medium more and more. In this one, I used a lot more prismacolor and pastel to bring out the details. It was a lot of fun.

Last of the Pastel Drawings

As my semester drew to a close, I found that I enjoyed the pastels a bit more each time.

Using this medium really forced me to think in a different way, a much more "painterly" style, if you will. I feel that it helped me with my illustrations a lot... and definitely had an impact on my improvement this semester. Here are a few of my final "faves"...

We had some great characters come in to model for us, everything from a Belly Dancer to a Psycho Clown/Drag Killer. Pretty fun stuff...

PINOCCHIO--"Lampwick's Fate"

I have been thinking a lot about Pinocchio lately and this scene is one of my favorites. It's so dark and scary... really if you think about it. I believe it scares me more now that it did when I was a kid.

Kennel Scene

Here is (what I think) it probably the saddest scene in the book. Mattie in the kennel. Who would blame her for barking at everyone who came by...! Don't worry Mattie... it gets better. ;-)

The final look

Here is the drawing for my the last page of the book. I'm pretty happy with this one. It has that safe and sweet look I was going for, but without being too sappy... I hope.

Mattie finds a forever home!! I hope I didn't ruin the ending for anybody. ;-)

Alice and the Cheshire Cat

I had a concept to update Alice in Wonderland last semester in my Graphic Novel class, but due to time, I never felt like I could realize it fully. This semester with the help of my new animal anatomy knowledge, and the models I've found... I managed to recreate the first scene.

I wanted to make the cat a bit scarier, not the rolly polly image we're used to seeing in previous versions. I think it makes sense that Alice would really stop and listen to a cat this size! After all, talking animals at this point in the story don't really phase her anymore.

First Mattie Story Painting

It's been a long road, but here is the ALMOST complete first painting from my Mattie stories. It's a little sad, but don't worry... the story perks up shortly after this!

More Pastel Figures

In Bill's class we've continued to hone our pastel figure drawing skills... and as time goes on, I'm finding that I'm starting to enjoy it more each time I do it.

Here are some samples of the work we've been doing. We've moved on the clothed figure, and we've had some fun costumes to draw.

We even had a Charlie Chaplin impersonator come in (though he was a bit more portly than the original Charlie)

For the Chaplin drawing, I did a more monochromatic color scheme, concentrating on darks and lights, with a hint of color, but not too overpowering. I think it turned out okay!

I'm experimenting more and more with the medium...I find it layers really well, and I can get some cool effects with it. It's been fun and I've been learning a lot.