Monday, November 30, 2009

The Great Chimerathon! DAY 2


To celebrate the completion of my Creating Chimerical Critters Tutorial and to fill in what would otherwise be a quiet weekend (Tim's away, so my muse can play, although she should also do some housework) I have made a idle boast:

I do not believe that there are any two animals I cannot hybridise.

Now entering Day Two. Yesterday I completed a grand total of NINE weird Chimerical Critters. Today I am working on at least a dozen. Yesterday I also cooked and weeded the garden, today it is miserable and wet and thus I have every excuse to stay indoors and draw.

Wild boar + Turtle + Woolly MammothVelociraptor + Sugar Glider
Venus Flytrap + Mantis + Squid
Camel + Flamingo
Meerkat + Giraffe + Violet
Coelacanth + mouse lemur + death's head moth
English bulldog + Sunflower + Rockhopper Penguin

Tasmanian devil + crocodile + zebra

alligator + wild boar + rattlesnakeDung Beetle + Cherry Shrimp

And Suggestions for later in the week if I feel so inclined:
Phoenix + Panda + Dragon
Pig + Turkey + Cranberries (The Thanksgiving chimera)
Lion + Fantailed Goldfish

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Great Chimarathon!

To celebrate the completion of my Creating Chimerical Critters Tutorial and to fill in what would otherwise be a quiet weekend (Tim's away, so my muse can play, although she should also do some housework) I have made a idle boast:

I do not believe that there are any two animals I cannot hybridise.

This weekend, starting tomorrow, I shall be embaring upon a Chimerathon - mainly sketches, although some may make it into completed ATCs in the not-to-distant future.

And you're welcome to participate. There are two ways in which you can do this:

1. You can throw me your wildest suggestions. No more than two-three animals please. And flora is acceptable too. I shall sketch up the most interesting combinations. If you come up with something that I just CANNOT draw, I shall send you some art prints or something equally nifty.

All flora/fauna MUST exist and I must be able to find photographic references of it! Extinct and prehistoric animals permitted.

2. You can join me! You can make sketches too! If you want help conceptualising your chimeras or want more information on what the heck they are, check out my tutorial:

Here's what has been done so far (images will be uploaded regularly throughout the day)

Axolotyl + Hippopotamus
Quetzal + Octopus
Apaloosa + fancy goldfish + Carolina Parakeet

Labrodite + Peacock + Dahlia
T-Rex + Mouse + Porcupine
Elephant Seal + Condor
Hedgehog + Mongoose + Dragonfly
Giraffe + Peacock
Leafy Sea Dragon + Capybara + Red Disa Other Suggestions:
velociraptor + sugar glider (proving a conceptual challenge)
camel + flamingo
wild boar + turtle + woolly mammoth (also something of a challenge)
meerkat + giraffe + violet
Dung Beetle + Cherry Shrimp
Coelacanth + mouse lemur + death's head moth
English bulldog + sunflower + rock hopper penguin
Tasmanian devil + crocodile + zebra

Saturday, November 28, 2009

A Shadow in the Night

On silent wings, these two monstrosities make their way through the darkness. One, the Horned CatBat favours the dry deserts, where it hunts flying insects and the occasional small rodent. The other, the Moonaguar, flies on silent wings through the lush and verdant rainforests, preying on sleeping birds and pouncing on nocturnal mammals.

Horned Lizard + Tabby Cat + Fruit Bat
Madagascar Moon Moth + Jaguar
Two more chimerical hybrid ATCs.

Prismacolors and polychromos pencils, with some gel pens and fineliners for emphasis.

This Black horse (with a white mane, a rare but sometime occurance), is going to trot her way into Russia! She's clearly a prize winner already. Although I'm not sure what a blue and red ribbon means.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Writing is on the Wall

One of my friends, who lives in Bahrain, recently returned home to New Zealand to have her baby. A gorgeous wee girl called Zoe. Thus this piece fills two purposes - one it gives a bright and colourful wall-hanging for a lovely wee lass and two, it helps me get my art into another country of the Middle East. The materials used was tombow markers and fineliner pens on oilpaint paper. With its thick weave, this paper does not hold colour very well and often I end up with murky results, however I bought it and I need to use it, so I have tried to find the best way to work with it. Pencils do not work well on the weave, but brush markers fill in the lowered spaces quite neatly.

Zebra ... Octopus ... Emu

My fiance commented that I should work on more large pieces, and he's probably right. When I have completed my current list of ATC trades, I shall devote more time to larger pieces such as this.

I might even make similar Animal Letter charts to request - provided the child's name is 5 letters or less!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Bound for Latvia and Serbia

It was quite serendipitous how I met Nauris , a lovely fellow who is going to help me get my art into Latvia. You see, normally he sells his art, and thus he was sending messages out to some folks in the Ebay Group of ACEO Enthusiasts, and somehow he discovered my Facebook. I AM a member of ACEO Enthusiasts, as it turns out, although I haven't posted there since before my trip to Madagascar in 2007. Anyhow, he graciously agreed to do a trade with me, even though he usually sells, not collects.

So first up, here is a New Zealand themed card:

If your Totem is the Puriri Moth...
You are somewhat shy and keep rather to yourself. However, you believe in living life to the full, as tomorrow it may end, and will never turn down an opportunity when it comes your way.

(There's not really much to say about the Puriri Moth - it only lives for about a day once in moth form, as it has no feeding appendage. It is also the largest moth in New Zealand, found only in the North Island - which lead to much excitement the first time I saw one).

And the second card was inspired by his fantastic character "Mr Cat". Mr Cat gets up to all sorts of activities and seems to have a lot of fun, so it made me think - maybe I should draw my Miss Katta. So I rustled up a new Katta the Artist:

And to add more to my conquering of the Eastern Europe countries, I have also tracked down a lass in Serbia. the Owl Totem shown previous is destined for her doorstep, along with this pretty Poison Dart Treefrog I rustled up a couple of days ago:

And last but not least, although he's only travelling as far as Australia, is this delightfully colourful Himalayan Monal. I've been meaning to draw one for a while. Finally, I've gotten onto it!

And so concludes another Artful day!

Scenic land Downunder

I don't draw enough landscapes, it's true. That's because I'm pretty bad at them. And do you know how you get good at something?

You practise.

So, here's the results of my latest practise:

What you are seeing here are four specific landmarks located at various points around New Zealand.
We have:
Moeraki Boulders at sunset (just north of Dunedin, Otago)
Viaduct at Arthur's Pass (on the way to the West Coast)
The Lighthouse at Cape Reinga (Bay of Islands)
Volcanic Terraces at Rotorua

Three of the four pictures were referenced from my own photos, only the Moeraki boulders were not. I think it's time we went down south again!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

If your Totem is the Owl...

You are intuitive and can reveal secrets from out of the darkness. These are not always welcome, but will always be filled with wisdom and guidance.

I've done quite a few of these. Maybe it is time to make a book?

Flying off to Germany

I'm not sure why little Bug Eyes here is looking so concerned. He's off to a lovely new home in Germany with TheMoonDrop. I guess maybe he's not looking forward to a long voyage by air, especially when he has to share an envelope with this two bright chaps:

Of course, Red-billed Toucan is filling himself with tasty berries, whereas quirky little Robin Redbrest is eyeing you with curious suspicion.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Alphabet Twinchies

The lovely WhisperedPrayer lured me into a trade with her (bribing me with her beautiful art and a theme I couldn't resist). So here are three twinchies for her alphabet chart.

M is for Marmoset (Pygmy)
V is for Vulture
A is for Aye-aye

These were a blast to make, I could do the whole alphabet quite contentedly.

These are prismas and tombow markers on oil-paint cardstock. It was an interesting experiment because the weave is too deep for pencils to work without a great deal of blending. However, the brush markers filled in the gaps. I hope the end result is bearable!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

And even more Chimeras

But first I thought I would share off this magnificant work of art I received in the mail yesterday:

It is Prismacolors on sandpaper as drawn by MegansEpicMess. Isn't he gorgeous?

Now for my more boring art:

Dragonfly/Mouse for Tabblyn.

Blue Jay/Red Panda gryphon for Eraserqueen

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Dragon for All Seasons

Summer, Autumn
Spring, Winter
In case you didn't guess already.

Chimerical Tutorial Complete

I have now completed my Chimera tutorial. You can see with step by step details, how I conceptualised and created these two cute hybrid critters.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Beep beep!

Well Moonrose, I hope you like bright, oversaturated colours.

Next time I shall try something less migraine inducing. I bet you can't wait to see my *sparkle*pets!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Crazy Chimeras

Lionfish/Tiger/Monarch for Tlouey
Lemur/Cat for Amerasu
Birch Tree/American Lady Butterfly/Orchid for Fyrelyter

To see the offerings of the others in this group - click here

Monday, November 2, 2009

More Mutant Madness!

I'm hosting another Chimerical Critters swap on Illustrated ATCs (last year at this time I hosted one as well. Amongst our bizarre beastie bastardisations were the following:

Toucan/Lobster for Ms Art Lady
Unicorn/Tiger/Ladybird for Moondance
Anteater/Reindeer/Bumblebee for OuP

I have also been inspired to write up a tutorial on inspiration for creating these sort of bizarre hybrids. So expect more from that in the future, along with a sample of the various creations submitted to this one.

More weirdness to come!

Branching Out...

... into tree illustrations!

These trees all sprout from the book "In search of Remarkable Trees (On Safari in Southern African).

Although they are not in fact all African Trees.

They are:
A Kokerbooms of South Africa, Pachypodium geayi of Madagascar (A really big Elephant's Foot plant)
The Australian Grass Tree and the Aloe pillansii of Northern Cape

Sunday, November 1, 2009

She Sells Sea Shells

Well, actually, she's giving this set away:

What we have here are four brightly coloured sea critters etc commonly found in New Zealand waters. I've used saturated colours to give a bright, playful feel. Not that you'd want to play with some of these!

Paddle Crab: These grow up to 10 cm in width and are commonly found in New Zealand waters. Although they can pack a bit of a puncture, they are also something of a delicacy. They use their paddle-shaped rear limbs to swim through the water.

Ram's Horm Shell: This frequently found debri is actually the shell of a cephalapod. The original animal probably died far out to see and then the husk is washed in with the tide.

Kina: Live kina are a spiky, green-brown ball that stalks slowly across the ocean floor, using tube-feet positioned between the spikes. It munches on algae and adheres stuff to itself to aid in camouflage. These creatures can live 15 years! When they die, the spines rot away, leaving the green, slightly flat globe frequently found washed up on the shore.

Maurea (Beaded Top Shell): This Gastropod is one of a large family found in New Zealand. Although not particularly common, they can be found on low tidal rocks where they browse on algae and sponges.