Tuesday, August 25, 2009


The pushmi-pullyu is an antelopey creature with two heads on opposite sides of its body. I made mine a blackbuck because I like their coloring and twisty horns. I enjoy drawing ungulates a lot. It's fun to make hooves and horns and skinny legs, and many of them have such cool coats. I will be painting more hoofstock soon!

See the painting in my blog's header. Gouache on magical brown sketchbook paper; I need to get another of these! They're fun! Gouache works well on this since I can subtract paint and let the brown show through for highlights. The original sketch is in blue pencil. You can see all the leg positions I tried and how I didn't finish drawing the horns.

2 YEARS LATER EDIT: Now that I've changed the header, I've added the pushmi-pullyu painting for easy reference.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A sailor travels to many lands...

I'm pretending I'm an children's book illustrator from the 1950's . Here is an indri based on an old illustration of one in an animal book I have, wearing the duck's sailor outfit right out of the Richard Scarry book Rabbit and His Friends. Boy, I love this book! The pictures are so cute and fun, and the end is so happy that it makes me want to cry. It's done in a different in style than his later work; the pictures are more "primitive", for lack of a better description, and feel spontaneous and loose and sketchy. I've based a painting on this book before; the title doesn't tell you that it's about a platypus.

Indri are cute lemurs that have little teddy bear tails and ears. This is painted with gouache on some handmade paper in a sketchbook that I probably shouldn't have used since it's pretty thin. Don't disintegrate, page!

Thursday, August 06, 2009

How now, black chow?

At the feed store that I used to go to almost every week to stare at the puppies and baby chicks and things, there was a "shop dog" -- a black chow named Woo. He was really laid back, mostly lounging around in the store somewhere. I'd call his name and he'd put his head up, trot over and let me pet him a while, then walk away again to go sleep somewhere else.

I did a little sketch of a chow, then added dragon horns at the last minute. I decided to ink it with a brush (I didn't do a very good job). Then I decided to paint it (also not very neatly done). I think this chow dragon should be named Woo too, because that's the best chow name.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Little Water Bears

I like tardigrades, don't you? They're adorable microscopic animals that live in water. I've never seen a real one, though I tried when I had access to high-powered microscopes. I collected so much moss and pond water, but came up empty. They're also know as water bears, can live in environmental extremes and can survive being dehydrated for years. Look up some movies of them walking around, they're so cute!

Tardigrades have 8 chubby legs with tiny claws/toes. I experimented with some designs for these little critters. I even made one furry like a true bear. These are fun to draw; I'll probably do some more. Colorful little gummy water bears! Everybody should try drawing some now.