Cinderella in the graveyard painting

This is an image I started in 2008, but never completed. This last month, I’ve been trying really hard to go back to some old incomplete images and get them finished.  This was the first one I finished. Chocolate-chip cookie for me!!

I was inspired by the Grimm version of the story, this scene in particular:

“Arriving home, the man gave his stepdaughters the things that they had asked for, and he gave Cinderella a twig from the hazel bush.

Cinderella thanked him, went to her mother’s grave, and planted the branch on it, and she wept so much that her tears fell upon it and watered it. It grew and became a beautiful tree.

Cinderella went to this tree three times every day, and beneath it she wept and prayed. A white bird came to the tree every time, and whenever she expressed a wish, the bird would throw down to her what she had wished for. ”

This is what it looked like in 2008 when it was “abandoned.” Obviously it went though a lot of changes. I liked the color scheme, but the layout was very boring.

I added her mother’s tree, and tried to make her pose more natural looking. When I started, I thought this picture was very nearly done, but I spent probably another 12 hours on it.  Painted in Photoshop as usual.

Illustration Friday: Warning

A quick sketch I did for this week’s theme at IF: Warning. Inspired by the Mouse Guard series which I am loving.  Pencils, only 15 minutes (wanted to see how much I could do in that short time).  Colorized in Photoshop.

I’m not sure if he is warning them from going that way, or telling them that they shouldn’t continue on their current path. Either way, I think I would listen to him.

IF: Star gazing

star gazing The theme this week for Illustration Friday was “Star Gazing.”  Starry skies are high on my list of things I love to draw, so how could I resist doing this one?  So I painted Norton, and a friend out at night looking up at the sky.  Maybe they are wondering if the rumors about the moon being made of cheese is real. In my mind the second mouse is Molly, but she doesn’t look very white is this picture.  Maybe she got a little dirty on her climb up the hill.

Watercolors, with details finished in acrylics and color pencil.  5×7 on watercolor paper, close to 2 hours.

IF: Caged

This is Boxes, an adventurous goldfish that lives in the same library as Norton.  He gets pulled into the adventures with Norton. And of course, his bowl always comes with him, complete with his pet snail and treasure chest, filled with useful items.

Decided to use Boxes for the “Caged” theme, since the bowl is a type a cage, just a more roundy see-throughy cage. That comes with a pet snail.

Boxes is having a good time, even if he is flying through the air in the middle of a pirate battle. Maybe he hopes to make his escape into the ocean.  Or maybe he just wants to be a pirate himself.  Watercolors and ink drawing, 2 hrs.

This is Mrs. Thornapple, the Library’s resident (sleepy) cat. Really she is harmless, and Norton has no reason to fear her.  She is much more interested in napping in sun spots than chasing mice.

I need to get some more practice in drawing cats.  They, unsurprisingly (since I am very allergic to them) are my least favorite thing to draw.   I love chasing them out of my garden, but that is another story altogether.

Illustration Friday: Artificial

“When the rain came down in buckets, Norton would take a walk in the cornfield and pay a visit to Mr. Scarecrow.  While he was very good at scaring off the crows, Mr. Scarecrow was terrified of lightning.  So all through the storm, Norton sat by him, so that he wouldn’t be afraid.”

Illustration Friday: Artificial

The scarecrow is the artificial aspect of this drawing.  I sketched them out with pencil first, and then went back and added in the details with my ink pen.  I used masking for the rain drops, and then put down a wash of blue.  Then I started working in the browns and yellows in layers.  When it was all dry, I flicked in some white acrylic paint for more rainy effect.  Time to complete, around two hours.

IF: Norton in the rain (Double)

Norton: rain This weeks theme at Illustration Friday is “Double.” The double part of this sketch is, of course, the reflections in the puddle.  Making copies of Norton and the tree.

“When it rained, Norton would venture outside to clean his whiskers and fur.  He splashed in the puddles, and splished in the raindrops, until he was squeaky clean.”

Sketched with pencil and ink, and then painted over with watercolors. I started with a blueish/green wash, and then built up the browns and greens.  I went back over with the pen and a gray marker when I was done to work in a few more details and shadows. Total time, maybe an hour and a half.

Illustration Friday is a weekly creative outlet/participatory art exhibit for illustrators and artists of all skill levels.