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Hummingbirds for Jill!

Hello Friends!

i thought I would share these watercolor hummingbirds I sent my friend, Jill, for Christmas last week. She couldn’t wait to open it just like I couldn’t wait to open that huge plush sea turtle she sent me!

So here it is!

Have a wonderful day and give someone you love a big hug! 😁

 

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The Collaborative work of E. H. Shepard and A. A. Milne

Hello Friends,

Today I want to share with you a snapshot into the lives of children’s book illustrator, E. H. Shepard, and writer, A. A. Milne, from the fascinating book I’ve been reading called, “The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh, A Walk Through the Forest that Inspired the Hundred Acre Wood,” by Kathryn Aalto.

E. H. Shepard’s mother was Harriet Jessie Lee. She had grown up with an artist father. Therefore, she encouraged her son’s interest in drawing by providing notebooks and pencils for him to carry with him wherever he went. Kathryn Aalto says on page 57, “Through time, he developed a photographic memory for drawing scenes, events, and gestures.”

Shepard experienced a happy childhood with his parents and two older siblings until he was eleven. But Aalto says on page 58, “One day his mother, bedridden for months, bid the children a cheery goodbye for what they perhaps thought was a short trip to visit his aunts. Not much later, she died…Shepard said that he felt his childhood ended then.”

However, in his grief his love of drawing became “an outlet of expression for him.” (Page 58) His suffering aided him in being able to express emotions in the characters he drew. Kathryn observes this underlying grief when she notes, “Consider the way he portrays a contemplative or bewildered Pooh bear or a timid Piglet trying to be brave.” His mediums of choice were pencil, pen and ink, and black crayons. As you can see in his drawings of A. A. Milne’s characters, he “favored cross-hatching, fine line, or crayon,” (Page 61.)

In 1926, Shepard traveled to visit Milne’s stomping grounds and walk with him through Ashdown Forest. Not only did this land inspire Milne’s stories, it also became the inspiration for Shepard’s drawings. Aalto says on page 61, “The bee tree, Wol’s tree, Galleons Lap, and the Enchanted Place were real places Shepard interpreted…”

All of the characters in Winnie-the-Pooh were drawn from Christopher Robin’s real stuffed animals. But that “silly old bear,” as the fictional Christopher Robin called Pooh, was created from Growler. Growler was a stuffed bear that belonged to Shepard’s son, Graham. He studied and sketched how the boys played with their stuffed animals which eventually became his art for the books.

In my humble opinion, the collaboration of A. A. Milne’s writing and E. H. Shepard’s illustrations has been one of the greatest gifts bestowed on our world. These two men were definitely destined to meet, and the world over has forever been blessed by their incredible work.

I know my own childhood was enriched by Winnie-the-Pooh and all of his friends who lived in The Hundred Acre Wood. I am thankful to Kathryn Aalto for writing such a lovely book! I haven’t finished it yet, because I am savoring the beauty of her writing and photography, as well as the photography many others. I highly recommend it for an enjoyable read!

Here is a drawing I did of one of my favorite scenes from “Winnie-the-Pooh and the Blustery Day.” Pooh is about to go through Eeyore’s house he just finished building because he (Pooh) is holding onto Piglet’s scarf which has unraveled leaving Piglet in the sky.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug. 🙂

Backyard Deer Sketches

Hello Friends,

On Friday as I was doing dishes, I noticed a deer in our backyard. I dried my hands, grabbed a pencil and my art journal and went to the back door which has a big window.

When I got there, I saw THREE deer foraging in the leaves under our huge redwood tree. So I tried to sketch them very quickly as they moved around and laid down. It was fun!

Before I began doing the dishes, I had been reading my biography about Beatrix Potter and looking at sketches she did of her pets. This inspired me. I want to do more sketching from life, but the wildlife here has keen hearing, so I have a hard time getting close enough to see without making too much noise.

 

 

Christmas Turtle

Hello Friends!

Here is my first Christmas turtle! I had been thinking about drawing one for quite awhile, so I decided to draw one in my art journal and post it today which is my birthday!

So this is my Christmas turtle elf, Todd. And he came with a Santa hat and elf booties completely from my imagination! I drew him with markers.

Well, my husband has today and all next week off. Today we are meeting with a couple of poet friends. I will just be listening to the three of them share. I don’t write poetry anymore, but I used to many years ago. Anyway, it will be a fun start to my birthday. Other than that, no plans yet.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 😀

 

Backyard View

Hello Friends!

The other day it was warm enough to sit on the back patio and doodle.

I took my Prismacolor watercolor pencils and my art journal and sat in the sunshine! It was pretty nice, probably 60 degrees.

Later after some chores, I sat down and used a couple of brushes and added water to my doodle. This is just a portion of the view of our backyard trees. The lighter grass between the sky and green grass and orange leaves is a bit of the huge field behind the houses here.

Today there are four deer right behind the fence! It really is beautiful here in the fall even though it is December. We tend to get later winter weather here in Northern California.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 😀

 

Art Journal Mantra

Hello Friends!

I doodled this with the same markers that I drew my crazy cat Christmas tree with – my Arteza Brush Pens. They are easier on my arm than drawing in pencil or painting with brushes. They are a fun tool to have around to doodle with, for sure!

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 😀

Christmas Tree Cat

Hello Friends!

So what does this artist do when she realizes she drew a leaning Christmas tree? Add a crazy cat pulling it down, of course!

Have a wonderful day and give someone you love a big hug! 😀

Red-eared Slider

Hello Friends!

Now that Folktale Week and Inktober are all done, I am getting back to what I love to do best. Paint turtles! There are so many different kinds that I haven’t attempted yet. So last night I finally sketched this little guy on the rocks with my Inktense pencils. It felt weird because of all the graphite pencil work I’ve been doing lately.

I hope everyone is having a good week. I’m going to town again today to try and get rid of some books at my favorite used books store. Then I am going to check out the new library in Red Bluff. Normally, I only go to Redding for everything. But I met with a couple of ladies there last month to talk picture book stuff, and didn’t have time to browse that day. I will also have to get a new card since they are in a different county.

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 

Interview with Author Penny Parker Klostermann

Meet Buckshot the Tortoise!

Hello Friends,

I wanted to share an informative and fun video about tortoises (and turtles) with you. I didn’t go looking for this – my daughter sent me the link – she knows me so well!

I am currently trying to get my physical strength back. Our dog has tripped me twice in one week and both times I went down. Lately she has been lying in unusual places where I just didn’t see her! I keep telling my husband she must be trying to kill me because she’s sick of the gross medicine I have to give her twice a day for the rest of her life!  😉

Anyway, I am not sure I am going to be able to re-do my picture book painting for the real Golden Ticket contest that the illustration instructors are doing. It would be due in five days and I really don’t want to be crippled from trying! I got a lot of feedback from classmates about changes I can make to help it look better. All their suggestions were helpful. But my gut is telling me not to push it.

I hope to do some sketching for fun soon, but in the meantime, enjoy this fun video!

Have a wonderful day, and give someone you love a big hug! 🙂

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