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2576. "Everyone Can Fly" Exhibition at the SAM

I am thrilled to be a part of the lovely group exhibition Everyone Can Fly at the Susquehanna Art Museum in Harrisburg, PA. The show opened on March 20th, and will be up through the end of May. If you find yourself in the Harrisburg area I hope you'll drop by the beautiful museum and enjoy a visit.

photo credit: Jonathan Bean
From the website:

Everyone Can Fly is an exhibition of original illustrations from a group of award-winning children’s books with a focus on literacy and its relevance for the youth of our region. The centerpiece of this collection will be all of the original artwork from Tar Beach by internationally renowned author/painter/quilter/lecturer Faith Ringgold. This magical story was the recipient of the 1991 Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration and a New York Times Best Illustrated Book choice. Another feature of this unique exhibition will be the addition of local and regional illustrators.
 

Artists on view: 

Amy Bates, Jonathan Bean, Lauren Castillo, Megan Lloyd-Thompson, Faith Ringgold, Shadra Strickland 

 

Friday, May 15- Free Family Evening! Join us to meet the illustrators, enjoy light refreshments, music, and hands-on activities. Free admission 5: 30 – 8:30pm.

 

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2577.


Look what I was sent this week:



The lovely Missus B emailed to ask permission from myself and Damian Harvey. I'm not sure that she actually needed it, but it was lovely to be asked and even lovelier to listen to her reading our book. 

If you have children of the right age (or just like to have a story read to you - I know I do...) then take a look.

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2578. My very first portfolio


Here is my very first portfolio - the 30 lb 'jumbo boy'.  It was gigantic and filled with astounding work! Art directors loved it. They ate it up like cake.

Each new portfolio I made got smaller and smaller until now they fit on an iPhone. But there's something to be said for the 'Jumbo Boy'. Art directors had to clear their desk just to look at it. 

I think the amazing thing is that I drew those in ink straight onto the newsprint page without any pencil or rough sketch. I loved how the fountain pen ink sank into the newsprint.

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2579. ‘Angry Birds’ Feature Will Cost $180 Million to Produce and Market

Whether or not the "Angry Birds" feature will be creatively risky, it's definitely a financial risk.

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2580. Character studies


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2581. Maria The Virgin Witch Review

Title: Maria The Virgin Witch (Junketsu no Maria) Genre: Fantasy, Religion Publisher: Kodansha (JP), Kodansha USA (US) Artist: Masayuki Ishikawa Serialized in: Good! Afternoon Translation: Stephen Paul Original Release Date: February 24, 2015 There’s not a ton of manga released in the US that talk about religion, or if they do, it scrapes the surface ... Read more

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2582. Daily Painting - Day 1 - Succulent Plant


©Lesley Breen Withrow

I decided to take one hour tonight to paint my succulent plant (although I changed up the pot for something more colorful). Was so fun and relaxing! I would love to try to paint or draw or create art every day and post it onto my blog and my facebook and instagram pages. Even if I can't make it happen everyday, I am going to try. So, what better day to start than today!

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2583. ABOWS Shortlisted for the Green Earth Book Award!!

Oh WOW! A BIRD ON WATER STREET has been shortlisted for the Green Earth Book Award sponsored by The Nature Generation! With the strong environmental angle of my book, this award means so much to me! As well as the to American Library Association:

“One of the beauties of the Earth Book Award is that it recognizes an author who’s writing about a topic that is of vital importance to our Earth, yet it’s an area that, until recently, received little attention.”
-Pam Spencer Holley, author of the American Library Association’s Quick and Popular Reads for Teens
     The competition is stiff - some amazing books with which to be associated - but winners will be announced on Earth Day, April 22, 2015. Fingers crossed!

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2584. When Hillary Ran for Senate...

The latest from my drawing table, from my book on Hillary Rodham Clinton:


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2585. February Recap -

There has been so much going on - since mid-January in fact, that I've kind of given up on catching up in any comprehensive way, so I'm just going to post an overview or two. This one of the whirl-wind that was February....

It started with Greg Spalenka's Alla Prima workshop (which I did have time to document here).


This was quickly followed by the coterie of French artists coming to town - the first event with them being their gallery open at Krab Jab Studio -

- immediately followed by Virginie Ropar's one-day workshop for TLCWorkshops.

Greg Spalenka came to town, and Krab Jab Studio hosted his Artist As Brand TLCWorkshop.


All the above artists, and *more* were all guests at MythicWorlds (I was the 'artist wrangler - acting as liason for all of their mini-workshops for the convention).


All in all, it was a crazy-busy month - full of art, artists, learning and good times. Still recovering from it all.

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2586. Some new paintings

Swimmer 1, 2015. Oil on canvas, 18x24.

Swimmer 3 (granulation) 2015. Oil and wax on drafting film, 14x17. 

Swimmer 4 (teal), 2015. Oil on canvas, 16x20. 

Swimmer 5 (blue), 2015. Oil on canvas, 16x20. 

Swimmer 6 (night), 2015. Oil and wax on canvas, 18x24. 

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2587. Spring Tulip Fairies


Working to incorporate the patterns I have so much fun drawing into fairy dress design. With spring upon us too, tulips and little weed flowers inspire me.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 

New Originals On Etsy

Tomorrow I'm listing these cute original watercolor pixies for sale in my Etsy shop. Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to see the exact time they'll be going up!


• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 

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2588. Suggested Donation Interview

James Gurney, Jay Braun, Tony Curanaj, and Edward Minoff

Tony Curanaj, sketched by Jeanette during interview

Earlier this month, Jeanette and I visited Grand Central Atelier in Long Island City, New York.

Tony Curanaj and Edward Minoff, two instructors there, are also the hosts of "Suggested Donation," an art talk podcast, and they interviewed me as well.

We got the tour of the GCA's new teaching space. They just moved into a spacious industrial building, filled with casts and sculptures and figure paintings.

Building on their success in the Water Street Atelier and Grand Central Academy, they have built a community of artists dedicated to upholding classical traditions.
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Grand Central Atelier
Suggested Donation podcast interview with James Gurney

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2589. Chronicle Book cover reveal!

My new Chronicle Book cover reveal  This book will be out in July💕Will share more about the book, when I can💕 Thank you Nancy for writing this lovely book and Tamara for having me to illustrate for the book  ‪#‎alinachau‬‪#‎watercolor‬ ‪#‎childrenbook‬ ‪#‎chroniclebook‬

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2590. NEW ARRIVALS - howkapow

There have been some gorgeous new arrivals at Howkapow this month. Star items include these beautiful new designs from Darling Clementine (above and below) on dishcloths, trays, and art prints. Also new in are these striking art prints from the brilliant Eloise Renouf. And finally this floral print caught my eye by Clare Owen. More new arrivals are due soon that look really

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2591. ‘Fugu & Tako’ by Ben West

The story of two Japanese salary men whose lives radically change when one of them eats a live puffer fish in a sushi bar.

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2592. Book-O-Beards: A Wearable Book

Book-O-Beards by Donald Lemke and Bob Lentzby Donald Lemke and Bob Lentz

Guys. So if book-gifting isn’t a thing for April Fool’s Day, then it totally should be. These books aren’t a joke, but they are a huge bunch of laughs.

Here they are in action:

How funny is that? Such clever design. A perfect accessory.

Book-O-Beards by Donald Lemke and Bob Lentz

Hipster popularity aside, these punchy beards provide a secret identity for the preschool set. It’s dress up meets poetry meets a barrel of laughs.

And these guys don’t stop there! Beards have some series teammates in Book-O-Hats, Book-O-Teeth, and Book-O-Masks.Book-O-Beards by Donald Lemke and Bob Lentz Book-O-Beards by Donald Lemke and Bob Lentz

 

Sure to spice up story time!

ch

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2593. Chronicle Book Cover Reveal!

My new Chronicle Book cover reveal  This book will be out in July💕Will share more about the book, when I can💕 Thank you Nancy for writing this lovely book and Tamra for having me to illustrate for the book  ‪#‎alinachau‬‪#‎watercolor‬ ‪#‎childrenbook‬ ‪#‎chroniclebook‬

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2594. DESIGNER - johanna fritz

Designer Johanna Fritz has recently licensed her Cosmic Party design collection to German producer Swafing. The main pattern was actually created for a Spoonflower contest last year, but now it has become part of full licensed range. The collection will be presented to the public audience at h+h Cologne and will then be available in stores from the beginning of April. Johanna is one of the

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2595. Illustration friday "Ruckus"

AHh... nothing like a good little ruckus to settle the nerves.



Illustrated for Illustration Friday's word of the week "Ruckus"

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2596. WALLPAPER - mini moderns

P.L.U.T.O is the latest wallpaper design from Mini Moderns. Whilst designing their Hinterland collection - based on Dungeness and the surrounding Kent countryside - Mini Moderns were intrigued to learn about the area’s rich military history. The P.L.U.T.O. wallpaper is named after The Pipe Line Under The Ocean - a fuel line running under the English Channel to supply fuel to the allied D-Day

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2597. Pencil roughs from Onesie Mumsie







 

Some of my pencil roughs from Onesie Mumsie (written by Alice Rex) due for release April 1, 2015.

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2598. pugs of the frozen north: work in progress

If you wonder why I haven't been blogging much recently, it's because of THIS. Here's a preview sampler of a couple chapters of my upcoming book with Philip Reeve, Pugs of the Frozen North:



The artwork for the whole book is due very soon and I'm working with the energy of a whole pack of 66 pugs on it! It's not easy, drawing 66 pugs. I must be careful with my pug count:



Hee hee, and they are quite noisy, too:



I'm drawing it the same way I did for Oliver and the Seawigs and Cakes in Space but with a different colour this time (turquoise). My favourite part of the job is using my dip pen and India ink to draw the ink layer, after I've done the pencil rough drafts:




Here I am at the library, doing some of the digital colouring.



Check out some of the printed pictures in the Pugs sampler! Funnily enough, there aren't any pugs in these chapters, it's all about YETIS. Who make noodles from snow.



Why have a Yeti Noodle Bar in the middle of our book? Well, because I've always wanted to draw a Yeti Noodle Bar, that's why.



But you can't just eat your noodles and run. Oh, no.



Much frozen landscape:



And eccentric characters, including lovely bearded Helga Hammerfest and super chic Mitzi Von Primm.



I've been posting the occasional peek at the artwork on Twitter, so feel free to click over and have a peek here!


From The Bookseller, Fiona Noble's top picks

(Click here for a peek at Dinosaur Police!)

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2599. The Art of the Letter

When is  the last time you got a real letter in the mail from someone? Was it just recently or was so long ago that you can't remember? Writing letters seems to be a dying art. Children are not even being taught cursive writing in school anymore. (Really!)

Last year a friend sent me an actual birthday card in the mail and I was thrilled. I do appreciate e-cards because, hey, it's just nice that someone remembers you! But getting a card or letter in the mail these days is like a gift.

Send a nice letter with my packaged Notecard Assortments

My daughter is a writer, artist and musician. A couple of Christmas's ago she bought herself a typewriter at an antique store and then she came home and promptly started to type away a story that she was working on. I thought she was kind of crazy but really enjoyed the sound of the clack clacking of her furious typing.


And then last summer I was at an antique store with a friend of mine and I saw a beautiful 1940 Remington Deluxe 5 in excellent shape with the case and it was only $40, so I bought it. I used it to type a couple of friends letters on it last summer at meaningful points in their life. Remembering how happy I was toget a real birthday card in the mail, I thought my friends would be equally thrilled to get a typewritten letter.

It was a wonderful experience.  There is no delete button that makes it easy to rephrase so I had to really slow down and think about what I was saying.  I had to be careful with my typing I'm not very good at it. There is something very beautiful and tactile about having to put so much pressure on the keys to make a letter happen and I really enjoyed how messy the letters looked as they struck the paper in varying degrees of ink.

 I have saved quite a few letters  and notecards over the years. Though the majority were hand written not typed. (Even better!) Some of the ones that I saved were from a lovely man who had an online art gallery called Hustontown and is someone whom who I still call friend. We met in Baltimore at an Outsider Art Festival and he agreed to represent my work.

He not only represented me, but encouraged me and submitted published my work in Outsider Art magazines and even got me included in a book about Self-Taught, Outsider and Folk  artists by Betty Carol Selin.




Reading over his chatty letters about his family and plans for my work still brings me a smile. I was in a completely different place in the work I was producing at that time, and re-reading his letters caused me to reflect on that and think about the direction that I'm going in now.

Assorted Notecards now available here
If you've become like most of America now and rely on texting and emails to communicate with people, why not think about writing again? Especially to people that matter to you. I am writing to my daughter more because I want her to have a tangible remembrance of me and the things I have said to her over the years to hold in her hands and reflect on when I'm gone, like the ones I have from my Mom. I sure don't think she is going to hold on to my emails :0)
12 pack Assorted Notecards now available here


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2600. tuesday night tree painting.....

©the enchanted easel 2015
one (of three) custom paintings on the easel this week for a little boy's nursery.

{one owl. two birds. one tree. lots of flowers...and lots of cuteness. :)}

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