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Showing posts from 2014

#inktober Day 31: By the Sea

#inktober Day: 30 Cat in repose

#inktober Day 29: Seagull sailor

#inktober Day 28: Hermit Crab

#inktober Day 27: Sea Turtle

#inktober Day 26: Be careful what you wish for...

#inktober Day 25: Ship out of water

#inktober Day 24: Mermaid

#inktober Day 23: Halloween Parade

Dracula is poking fun of Frankie who ate too much candy.

#inktober Day 22: Halloween Parade

Dracula is poking fun...

#inktober Day 21: Halloween Parade

Neil, the astro physicist watches his step.

#inktober Day 20: Halloween Parade

This kitty's on the prowl.

#inktober Day 19: Halloween Parade

Looking forward to a week of class Halloween parades.

#inktober Day 18: Dancing

Dance like nobody's watching. But what if they are?

#inktober Day 17: Spooky

As a kid, nothing creeped me out more than my Grandparent's basement. I knew at the time it was just my imagination but that didn't seem to stop me from freaking out! lol

#inktober Day 16: Elf

#inktober Day 15: Friends are for the birds

#inktober Day 14: Bird

#inktober Days 12-13: Gramps and me

#inktober Day 11: scratch

#inktober Day 10: balancing act

#inktober Day 9: Cranky Mammoth

2014 MN SCBWI Annual Conference

We had a great conference this past weekend with great speakers and lots of great information about writing and illustrating children's books.

#inktober Day 7&8 combined

#inktober Day 8: Class in session

#inktober Day 7: Class in session

#inktober Day 6: Monster Mash

"They played the mash, it caught on in a flash

#inktober Day 5: Multitasking

I enjoy taking on lots of different tasks. I volunteer for SCBWI, illustrate, and write for children's books. Our 2014 MN SCBWI Annual Conference is this weekend and I am looking forward to meeting and hearing some great industry professionals talk about all things KidLit!

#inktober Day 4: Let's be friends

Happy Halloween!

#inktober Day 3: Little Swamp Monster on a stroll


#inktober Day 2: Joyride

Trying to catch up. #inktober

#inktober Day 1: duck, duck...

I'm in! #inktober

2014 LA SCBWI Conference

Soon I will be heading to the 2014 SCBWI Conference in LA #LA14SCBWI to toot my own horn. It will be fun to see all your familiar faces and meet new ones. I enjoy to learn and grow as an author/illustrator. See you there!

Southwest Salsa

I grew up in WI, and since about the time I was five,  my parents would pile the three kids, the slobbering dog, and our belongings and drive like mad in our rattletrap car down to Tucson, AZ during spring break. My Grandparents were snowbirds down there and we took the opportunity to escape (if only briefly) from the grips of the Wisconsin winter.

     We somehow managed to weave around snowstorms, rain, tornados and dust storms on our journey to the southwest.

     Despite the challenges, it's worth it considering what we were escaping from. Back in Wisconsin–still in the dead of winter, the senses are not satisfied. Trees lie dormant, flowers and shrubs are covered in a thick blanket of snow. When it's really cold even the birds and critters that remain become dormant too. There is no sound or smell outside for weeks. By spring, the persistent cold has kept the snow around for months–everything looks drab and dirty. The dim winter sun is just starting to wake up again…

5. Baba Yaga

Vasilisa gets moved to the front. I also gave Baba Yaga a more sinister left hand that is conjuring her shadow to go after Vasilisa.

I tinkered with the shadows for this piece to heighten the tension between the opposing characters. The white triangle of snow in the foreground points at Vasilisa. While the dark shadow cast by the house on chicken legs makes an arrow pointing towards Baba Yaga.

 Read the previous posts about the back story of how Baba Yaga and Vasilisa meet.

4. Baba Yaga

Part Four in the series Baba Yaga. Scroll down to read more about this illustration.

Baba Yaga is different than the usual witch. She flies around in a mortar and swings the pestle behind her to cover her tracks. Are you sure you want to visit her?

3. Baba Yaga: Vasilisa the fair

Part Three in the series Baba Yaga. Scroll down to read more about this illustration.

Vasilisa the fair is a bit like Cinderella as she has the misfortune of having an evil stepmother. Despised for her natural beauty Vasilisa is sent out into the deep dark forest by her Stepmother to visit Baba Yaga. Although she is clever and brave she is apprehensive to face such a menacing creature.

2. Vasilisa finds Baba Yaga

Being that this tale's origins are from northern Russia and Finland, I thought it fitting to use the dim light of winter to depict the eeriness of the dark forbidding forest. The hut where Baba Yaga resides stands on chicken legs.
Vasilisa the fair has been brave enough to make it this far on her quest, but now seeks refuge behind the tree while she gathers her courage to face the Baba Yaga.

1. Vasilisa finds Baba Yaga

I've had an idea for awhile to explore the traditional Russian folktale, Baba Yaga. In this scene, Vasilisa the fair has come to find Baba Yaga in order to get some help. But Baba Yaga is a tricky witch and decides the fate of those who visit her. Depending on what you do and say in her presence you will either live or be eaten.

Once it is finished, I will assemble the three paintings into one.

Just messing about...


As Valentine's Day approaches why not post about my happy place. I suppose it's not a huge secret–but I am in love with children's books.

Here is this week's reading list. In addition to reading these books, I've added a few more:




Happy reading!

Dinosaur explore!