Category Archives: animals

Tomie dePaola contest

As a member of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators), I entered the Tomie dePaola contest – due last Friday. It is a long shot, but the winner gets admission paid to the NY conference in Feb 2014 and lunch with Tomie!! (Wouldn’t that be cool?!) The assignment was to illustrate the “Sneeze” poem below with an audience of 2 mos-2 yrs. Here is what I came up with:

“Sneeze”

A sneeze
is a breeze
in
your
nose.

Sneeze in Your Nose

Sneeze in Your Nose

Fingers and toes crossed! 🙂

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Filed under animals, illustration, Tomie dePaola

Children’s Hospital paintings finished!

It has already been a week an a half, but I officially finished the Children’s Hospital commission that began in 2010! I was actually brainstorming and sketching when we were on our way to Korea to bring our Benjamin home. “Great timing!” I remember saying. It was a bit of a roller coaster with deadlines, but what an honor for me to create art that heals.

Attached is the final piece that was specifically commissioned as a dedication piece. It hangs in the Mpls Children’s neo natal unit near a plaque. Moose, duck, sheep and frog are my original characters in the 22-painting series on that floor. This series depicts a story of these characters traveling to my favorite MN places doing outdoor activities together. This piece needed to match the others but be reflective of the neo natal unit, with only two specifications: include the moose and a rocking chair. I felt as a finalĂ©, it wouldn’t be complete unless I included moose’s friends.

Like most of my work, it has underlying meaning–holding a baby in the rocker singing “Twinkle, Twinkle.” Once again, when I developed these characters we were on our way to meet Benjamin. He didn’t know English and we knew very little Korean, so one way to show him that I was his new mommy, that he would always be safe and loved was to hold him close and sing to him. I sang “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” (over and over and over…).

I guess in a way, it also represents my saying, “good night” to this job and quietly tucking it away.

Twinkle Little Star

Twinkle Little Star

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Filed under animals, illustration, Mpls Children's Hospital, paintings

SkADaMo #26

You asked what how Ele gets out of this mess? Oh, no! You nasty bird. Or was Ele in the wrong?  The saga continues…

Balloons pop. Ele's goin' D-O-W-N!

Ele’s goin’ D-O-W-N!

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SkADaMo #25

I’m continuing with the elephant theme from Thursday to figure out this little elephant’s personality. We find Ele in a very precarious situation. Mama toots from below.

What on earth will he get into next?!?

Hang on, baby!

Hang on, baby!

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SkADaMo #20

Posted for yesterday’s sketch.  Trying out a personality for the little elephant.

Little Ele

Little Ele

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SkADaMo – Day 14 & 15

Busyness sure gets in the way of things. I’m playing a little catch-up with my sketch of the day and missed one in there. Oh well. I’m trying to stay on task.

So yesterday (since my Benjamin is constantly asking “is Thanksgiving tomorrow?” because he wants to make those candy corn, hi-ho cracker, gumdrop & frosting turkeys, of which I told him that we only make on Thanksgiving) I’ve had Thanksgiving on my brain. So I sketched a turkey last night. Also thought he sure wouldn’t be ready and willing to visit our table:

turkey making a break for it

making a break for it

So for today, having passed by a neighbor’s pumpkins basking in the warm sun, they reminded me how much I love watching pumpkins’ faces morph as they begin to decay on the step. This is that pumpkin from memory (colorized in Photoshop):

saggy pumpkin

saggy pumpkin

Finally “Illustration Friday” chimed in with a topic today (each week there is a word and you have 7 days to come up with an idea, then post it on their blog, of which I’m determined to participate in one of these days.) The word is “tail.” I gave myself 5 minutes to brainstorm, and this is what came out:

Tails brainstorm

“Tails” 5-minute brainstorm

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SkADaMo Days 10 & 11

So I’m continuing the concept with the lady blowing in the wind and started playing with other characters in this story. Here’s what I came up with for yesterday:

Morning breeze

Morning breeze

And today. I needed an unexpected character. Why a dog in a trench coat, of course:

Fly-away dog

Fly-away dog

And your guess is as good as mine as to what the dog is holding and why. Stay tuned!

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Filed under animals, illustration, sketch of the day