Illustration Friday, Theme: Tea

I couldn't resist. This weeks theme is great, and this image popped into my head and wouldn't let me do anything else until I got it out. :)

Findley Oaks Elementary

     I had the honor of speaking at the Special Events Day at Findley Oaks Elementary in Duluth Thursday. There were about 30 professionals in a myriad of fields giving talks that day.
     It was interesting how completely different the ages were from year to year. I had to adjust accordingly – I had all grades, 1st through 5th, in 30 minute stints throughout the day. What a whirlwind! After two classes I said, "Oh this is a breeze." By the end of the day, I had a whole new appreciation for elementary school teachers. Those kids are ON, 100%, all day! I was exhausted. Smiling, but exhausted.
     I read GLITTER GIRL AND THE CRAZY CHEESE about a hundred times. (My shoulder was sore the next day from holding it up all day - how out of shape am I? Ha!) I tell ya, I can read that book now. I know where to have the kids help with sound effects, where to ask silly questions, etc. It is such a fun book to read, I'm so excited about it.
     So to top off the day, I returned home to an email from the author of Glitter Girl, Frank Hollon. The books have been shipped and are on their way! Woohoo! I received several F&Gs (folded and gathered) last Saturday, which I started giving out to my local indie bookstores, but there's nothing like the real thing - I can't wait!!

Hear Me Out! Teen Writer's Cafe

     Sunday was a huge success, what a great event. "Hear Me Out!" was the first of what I hope will be many panel discussions about writing and illustrating held especially for teens interested in these businesses.      The event was so crowded, people were sitting on the floor. The teens (and their parents) in attendance were inspired and bright. Many of them weeped creativity out their pores. Many of them reminded me of me at their age. Some mentioned projects that sounded so far beyond their years, we made sure to find out their names, as I'm sure we'll hear of them again.
     My fellow panelists were awesome and we seemed to click wonderfully. One attendee commented, "Y'all need to take this act on the road!"
     I especially enjoyed meeting Elizabeth Lenhard, author of many series such as "Spy Kids, Charmed, and Witches." Check out her newest book, Chicks With Sticks. It's a really cute book, especially if you are into knitting.

     Other panel members were: comic book artist Brian Stelfreeze; AJC journalist Bo Emerson; and Cartoonist Leslie Harris. The moderator was author Greg Chagnon. The whole amazing thing was pulled together by Barbara Schneider.
     I have to admit, I love speaking on panels. There's not so much pressure on one person and it's a wonderful opportunity to meet peers and make new friends. I also loved hearing everybody's responses to the interesting questions. What a great time!

Illustration Friday, Theme: Simple

     I don't get to do things like this enough. I love creating simple line-art images. I either do them with pen and ink, or the variable pen tool in Adobe Illustrator.
     I learned the importance of line quality while working at Buster Brown Apparel. I worked on the Peanuts line and got to draw Charlie Brown and Snoopy for several years. Charles Schulz had a degenerative disorder that made his hand shake. Bad for him, but great for his art. Duplicating his line quality was amazing. We'd draw two wiggly lines close together and fill them in. Thicks and thins varying throughout were very important.
     It's now one of the first things I teach in my beginning drawing classes - how much information you can share just with a simple line.
     So here is my simple drawing of a cow. Bonus this week - if you click below, you can download a pdf to color. Bessie needs spots!
     Click: COW.

Illustration Friday, Theme: Chair

This is a spec illustration I did for a client recently - got the job, but for a different story. So I guess this one just exists now, without a purpose. *sniff* Until Illustration Friday came along that is . . . CHAIR!!

Thanks for all the nine comments guys! I created it with my typical method of pencil sketches, scanned and arranged then flat color applied in Photoshop, then rendered in Painter - so mostly digital.