Monday, October 29, 2007

Pages 20 -21

Still working on my top-secret project. Here are pages 20 and 21.

Even though I thumb nailed out the entire thing, I really can't see the big picture till I have a completed painting.

Once in Photoshop, I have so much more freedom to move stuff around and play with the layout. I know I’m suppose to be able to do all that with the thumbnails but...

I thought maybe this one worked better with the text on the top. Whatch you think? I don't know, maybe not... No, now that i look at it, i like the other one better. OK, never mind.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Monster Mash

Here is my entry for the Penelope Illustration Monster Mash contest. Hope I win! Go monster!

Meanwhile Leatha Koefler, professional art critic and former gallery owner described my art in this manner, "It's like a party on paper." Could I ask for a better review??

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More Zonkey

click to see it bigger

I played around with the layout of my top-secret project some more today. Moved the text around mostly.

I also played with different color schemes. Do you like the orangey background color of the zonkey green background color? I'm leaning toward orangey.

When Wogs Attack: Part 1

Can you beleive I have another stinken cold? Well, you know the rules. Whenever I'm sick it's time to play bass.

Here's a sad little ditty called the Wog Blues...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


click to view larger

Most of my stuff is less creapy then this but I was playing around with drawing people and these guys just popped out onto the paper.

Anyhow, this week's word for the Picture Bookies blog is scared so I thought that fit in just swell like.
Good Morning Chicago

My interface design made the Chicago Times. How very exciting. The interface I designed for TeleHealth Services has been installed in Northwestern’s new Prentice Women's Hospital.

The Times ran a story on the hospital and included a screenshot of my system. They squished it a little but that’s OK, I’ve never been in the Times before.

Saturday, October 20, 2007


click to see it bigger

Since starting this blog in 2005, I have been constantly toying with art. Every time I came close to a method I was satisfied with, I would switch directions in some kooky attempt to reinvent my style.

Exploring is growing and it is fun and all but I think I need to settle down. I’ve played with a lot of methods and I have a lot to work with. So I decided to grow up, pick a style and stick with it. I figure the best way to do that is to put a dummy together. 32 pages all using the same art, now there is a challenge. ;)

And all ready I’m learning and growing. Just trying to figure out how type fits on a page is crazy hard.

Here is the method, cartoony images, colored pencil first, watercolor on top of that and finish off with the black inking.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


I think bringing a bear to school counts as extremes... kids...bears... you get it.
Just a test illustration for a top secrete project I have been working on. I could tell you about it but …
In The Eyes

Just flipping channels.. watching TV, not for me except when I’m sick.. I have a head cold…

and this guy says, “all these fish in the sea, all these colors, yet they never clash.

Not feeling up to painting or anything, the soul is willing but the flesh is weak… I decided to post some photos I took this year.

Maybe interesting to see what I thought photo worthy... where beauty can be found.

Water tower, Georgetown, SC: at dusk

Daufuskie Island, SC: greens on the wood

South Port, NC: bricks washed up on the beach

South Port, NC: Water tower (I never painted this one...)

Ocean Ilse Beach, NC: Turtle nest, very beautiful

Monday, October 15, 2007

Jirst Bluefin the First.

I have two major problems. I get ignored and I get ignored. See, I had to say it twice because you probably ignored me the first time.

My name is Jirst. Jirst Bluefin the First.

That’s a blended clip from my latest manuscript. One of my students asked to read it and afterward illustrated this rendition of Jirst. That’s Jirst’s first illustration.

A first for Jirst ;)

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Twigs snap
Upright bass, piano, jazz
Bent over sunflowers
Rake, scratching
Apple pie
Burnt sienna
Pumpkin soup

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

SCBWI-NC Conference First Pages

On Saturday afternoon a panel of editors read First Pages. Here is how it works.

Daring authors submit one page from their bestest manuscript for the panel to review. One person on the panel reads the first page then the other editors give their critique of the first page.

First Pages is the kind of thing that sounds like such a great idea and is a great idea as long as the panel isn’t reading your first page. Then is horrifying.

I have submitted first pages for three years now. This year was the first time my first page was read and yes, brutally critiqued.

The panel is reviewing my manuscript.

"Hey what do you think of this?"
"Well it's pretty much crap."
"Really? I was thinking double crap."
"Yes, perhaps you are right."
"So you are saying crap-crap?"
"No, I was thinking crapity crap."
"I also agree."

Ok, I'm totaly kidding!! The editors do a great job and give great advice.

So, after a long cry in the bathroom, followed by another long cry in the lobby, followed by a short cry and a tear up in the hall, I finally was able to swallow the critique. Remember, I said I was out to write the best manuscript ever.

I can take this. I can do this… or maybe I’ve just been down so long that…

Oh dear, I feel another tear up…

SCBWI-NC Conference Saturday Morning

Hey, my fox painting won an award. How cool is that? Especially since I didn’t know I was going to win an award.

I was just standing there, taking photos, waiting for the winner-winner to step up... and they called me a winner.

My painting wasn’t the winner-winner but it was still a winner and I got a ribbon and a signed thingy suitable for framing. And I was very excited about the whole thing.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

SCBWI-NC Conference Part 3

Sleep. I needed it. I needed to sleep a few nights before I could sit down at this here keyboard and tell you about the weekend.

The conference started Friday afternoon with a critique by my favorite editor Caitlyn Dlouhy. Nervous. Silly but I was so excited. First cause I never had a professional critique before and second cause it was my favorite editor Caitlyn Dlouhy.

Did you know my favorite editor Caitlyn Dlouhy edited one of my favorite voice books which is none other than Dovey Coe? You can’t help but talk just like Dovey when you read that book. It is written by Frances O’Roark Dowell who was also at the conference.

Frances and Caitlyn discussing what a dork I am.

Frances O’Roark Dowell and I chatted on Friday night after my critique. I told her I wanted to be her and I was working on a book very similar to her book but mine is titled Covey Doe. Yeah, I know. I said a lot of stupid things to a lot of other people who are not used to having stupid things said too.

My favorite editor Caitlyn Dlouhy gave me some excellent advice all of which I am taking to heart. My most grown up thing that I got out of this conference is that I am not really focused on getting my book published. I am focused on making Shellless, which is the story I had critiqued by my favorite editor Caitlyn Dlouhy, the most blow your socks off manuscript in the world.

Ok that was Friday. Then I went home to bed. Not sleep, just bed.

Monday, October 01, 2007

SCBWI-NC Conference

Who are these people and why are they on my blog? This is a photo taken sometime during the weekend at the SCBWI-NC Conference but I can’t tell you what day it was... looks like it was before breakfast.

I’m sure more will come to me later and I’ll update this post. Might even add a few more but I’m tired, too tired right now.