A Little Bit of Nonsense

Under The Stairs

underthestairs

You’ll find her now beneath the stairs

Living a life without cares.

There she sits in the dark

Unafraid of the park

Where her parents were eaten by bears.

Thanks to Dom Conlon for providing a bit of nonsense to go with my piece of nonsense.  🙂

And to my lovely Twitter friend Bratfink for coming up with her own nonsense verse to accompany my illustration:

Harriet Potter felt like a rotter,

as she hid under the stairs;

she’d not eaten all day,

her folks ran away;

then a hungry bear came in and got her.

Illustrating a Fairy Tale

Because I don’t very often draw bears, when my friend, Dom Conlon, wrote a fairy story about a bear I said I’d do an illustration to go with it. You can read the story here.

This is the picture I drew.

bearsnow

After I had drawn it, I thought it would be better if the wood was a lot darker, so I had a second attempt.

bearsnow2

I like this one better and so did Dom, so it’s the one he’s used. It made me think a lot about how illustrations help create the atmosphere in a story and I thought I’d try drawing the same scene in different media.

The next one was drawn with my Rotring pen and then a few washes of ink added.

bearshadedsnow

I’m quite pleased with this, although the trees need a little more depth.

The next version is in acrylic. I like the softer look to the bear and there is about 2 square inches on on the trees that sort of works.. I think if I were going to finish it I would end up reworking the entire thing. It’s headed for the bin.

acrylicbear

And finally…. this version is pencil and washes of ink. It’s a watercolour technique really, but you can do it with any paint that you can thin down.  I like the softer look of this.  I’m quite pleased as this is a method I’ve hardly ever used before.  I think I’ll be experimenting with it again soon.

watercolourbear

I hope you’ve all read the story. 🙂

I’d be interested to know which version of the illustration people prefer, so please comment below if you want or tell me on Twitter

Thank you.

Astro Poetica: Free mini poem book to download and make.

Something to do with the kids in the holidays. Or on your own. 🙂

I’ve been busy experimenting with making little origami books in different forms and I thought I’d like to share the fun, so I’ve designed a poem book for you to download and make at home.  The poem is from Astro Poetica by Dom Conlon.  The illustrations are new.

download-36All you need to do is download the PDF from Inkology here, print it out and get cutting, folding and glueing!  Full instructions are included. You will need computer paper, glue and cardboard (a cereal box would be ideal).  I used coated photo paper to print out my book, but it will work with any computer paper.

download

Once you’ve made it and know how it’s done you could experiment with making your own books, be creative, experiment with paper, ideas, words, pictures….

A full set of photos of me making the book are here.

Merry Christmas!

Tree – an art book

I made this today. It’s an origami book based on a Turkish Map Fold. It’s about 7cm by 7cm. It needs a little work on the cover, but it’s almost how I imagined it.  The poem is by Dom Conlon.  You can read it and other of his poems here.  I’ve had the idea for making a little book around a poem for a while.. the form came from this lovely blog: Green Chair Press.  I’ll write more about the method another time. Here are the photos:

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