Monday, December 18, 2006

Christmas? Really?

It's beginning to feel a lot like April,
Seventy eight degrees...
You wouldn't think I'd miss
Or maybe even wish
That my car windshield would freeze.

It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas
If you're from Maui,
I'm thinking "What the heck?"
Can't wear my turtleneck
In the picture with my family.

I wish it would feel a lot like Christmas,
Or at least, less like Spring Break.
Though it may seem silly,
But I hope Arkansas is chilly
Is snow all that hard to make?

Friday, December 15, 2006

Friday, December 08, 2006

Santa's bag of coal

Ahhhh... Enzo got to meet Santa at Petsmart.

Queen Bee

I started this a while back, but wanted to finish for my friends Melissa and Jason's birthday (Melissa loves bee, and I think Melissa means bee actually) It's another manga style piece I'll showcase somewhere sometime. (Me likes the beehive!)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Milan Fashion Week

Ok, I can't help it! Have to blog about the dog (hey, that rhymes!). I wanted to spoof the big Milan Fashion Week and have Enzo on the runway modeling his winter fashions. Hopefully he will stay warm as the arctic cold snap comes down to Texas.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Mike's Collage

Mike made this collage of pictures we took this weekend. He's so cute! Is he black, is he brown? He's double mocha latte :) He loved his grandparents and they loved him. He's such a good puppy, and quick on the uptake.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Green Jacket

Mike would like to add the disclaimer, we have to dress our dog in order for it's survival! Since they have no body fat they need a little help. We got Enzo a green courdory jacket.

He's doing great. He seems to have 2 modes, up and chewing or down and napping. He's chewing his toys so it's not a problem, and the napping is precious, he just sort of stops in mid chew and konks out.

And sleeping is fun, too. I've never known a dog breed totally at home sleeping on your face. I'm not joking! We'll get pictures to prove it at some point. He starts out next to you, then stretches his super long limbs and scoots up with them. Then he swerves his horse like long muzzle left or right, and before you know it you have a Iggy stole across your neck, and the little guy is just sawing biscotties. He also stretched his paws down the bed and wound up by our feet. I worry that he'll get too warm, but having so little hair and no jammies he seems right at home.

So the new family member is doing great. I'll try not to neglect my other blog responsibilities, but c'mon! He's so cute!

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Mike's first puppy! My puppy days with Two Sox seem ages ago, but I remember them. She seemed to fall asleep wherever I set her down. She was so small I thought she was a kitten.

Enzo is in his puppy hay-days, so full of puppy wonder and anxiety, too.

It's like he goes, "Wait, got the fear... no, it's gone now, let's see what's in here!!"

His parents were very well behaved and friendly, a good indication for us.

I promise to take some pictures with him tomorrow, but I looked a little like I delivered him by the time I got home!
Big News! Mike and I have a new puppy! He was born Sept. 1st and we picked him up today. He's an Italian Greyhound aka Iggy/IG, and the pictures here are from picking him up today. We've picked the name Enzo (as shown in his logo below), and the little boy puppy is so precious we feel partial paralysis already! In the pictures, Enzo is the black puppy chewing the blue bone and wearing the red harness. He had a nice family nap while we took care of the paperwork. The adult black, or seal colored it's called, is his mother Kissa His older sister Bella is the white with gray face. His dad, Luke, is in the pile of dogs, he's gray with a white chest. Enzo does have white splotches on his chest and white lil toes on his feet.
Personality wise he takes after his mom, friendly and curious and a little spitfire. I love the Mom and Me picture on the right of them both tugging on a toy (no it's not a two headed dog!). Enzo slept most of the ride home, and then investigated every inch of our house with gusto. He pottied outside, a good start, then crashed with Mike on the couch where they are still. So freakin cute, I wonder whywe waited so long, but I know why we did. I knew when it wasn't the time at the time, and when my puppy biological clock went off, I felt it deep inside that we needed a puppy. Mike agrees and we're both very happy. More pictures to come!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Fingers Crossed!!! (more details to come) Posted by Picasa

Monday, November 13, 2006

This is my favorite charcoal. I was standing in one of those open bird exhibits and had a great view down to the rhino exhibit. The little bird in the pen drawing below that isn't identified was curious about me and my big bag and stood watch while I drew this white rhino (I think the bird is some kind of heron or shore bird but didn't see a sign).  Posted by Picasa

I wasn't savvy enough to draw all these on the same page as shown, but these are the hits in the pen sketching book. Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 10, 2006

 Posted by Picasa

a charcoal of an American Alligator. He was out of the water sunning himself. His roomie walked around, looking very jurassic... Posted by Picasa

This is probably my favorite watercolor of the day. After a raucous workout of honking and flapping, all the flamingos snuggled in and took a nap Posted by Picasa

This quickie came out nice, it has the motion feeling the swinging gibbon had... Posted by Picasa

pretty bird... he was curious about me. He perched right above me cocked his head down toward me (so his feet are hidden from view). Then a gaggle of girl scouts came by singing "My Poor Meatball" at top volume, and he twittered, "Screw this!" and retreated to his nesting box. Posted by Picasa

Here I am at the zoo, painting the Toucan. A very nice photographer, Peter Vives, was photographing the animals and we struck up a conversation. It was his day off and my birthday and the place we both wanted to be was the San Antonio Zoo! He watched me draw the lemur and asked if he could photograph me. He emailed this one to me and some nice photos of the clouded leopard. The hat comes in handy because I don't like wearing sunglasses while painting (it messes with the colors). Thanks, Peter, for the photo! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Mom's Birthday

Hey, VA! Happy Birthday!

For those who don't know, I got a lot of things from my mom: Life, a work in progress set of teeth, my laugh (according to Mike), and my artistic talent (though to be fair, Dad's determination to gut it out through the hard stuff passed on to me, too). To both of my parents credit, they really encouraged and sometimes stood open-mouthed at my progress through school and my art career.

It makes me glad that Mom has taken and is taking art classes now that her chicks have flown the nest. There's a lot to doing art that isn't all about if you can or cannot draw (which, trust me, my Mom and draw!). What I mean is, you have to be willing to have a hand in creating what could possibly be the most horrendous, god-awful piece of crappolla in order to make progress. I still manage to create the occasional "experimental" piece, usually with oil pastels which intrigue but don't like me at all. However, I make these stinkers in the privacy of home now, it's much harder to be willing to risk that in a classroom. So you have to have guts to be an artist... or conversely, I guess, not care at all, but those kind of apathetic artists don't get too far. You have to care, and you have to be mortified a little inside over the thought that fingers will point and bellies will laugh. The guts just carry you through that and you come out the other side with something you're proud of.

So Happy Painting, Mom! Be gut-sy and blow the doors off your classroom! :)

who once painted a strange "Age of Aquarius" montage with sharks and birds... yeah... P.U.

I know there have been artists who paint something over and over, not for commissions or practice or anything, just as a meditative exercise. That's what I'm going for with these dart frogs. I'm just enjoying the act of painting them, more than trying to get something finished. Kind of like stop and paint the frogs I guess... I do marvel at their designs... I mean to me they remind me of little japanese race cars, but what did the natives of South America think of these hundreds of years ago? (ok the answer is: "Hey, don't eat those. Yeah, they're pretty, but seriously, don't lick them.") Posted by Picasa

Sunday, November 05, 2006

My Birthday

Well, my birthday is this Thursday and I am planning a treat for myself. It might sound sad and pathetic, but I'm going down to San Antonio by myself and going to the zoo.

Hold on, before your berate my husband, let me clarify: I want to go to the San Antonio zoo by myself! Mike and I have gone several times before (it's a great zoo), but the reason I want to go alone is so I can camp out in a spot and paint/draw without my internal clock going "Ok, Mike must be REALLY sick of the flamingos by now." This way I can stay till I'm done, and Mike's never rushed me at any zoo, he likes that I whip out the sketchpad and go to town. He's got a super nice camera, so he spends time photographing animals, too.

But yes, there's only so long you can spend looking at a sleeping ringtail lemur.

I'll be sure to post my birthday paintings here. It'll be my first day "totally off" since I've had those fun bookfairs and conferences. I may underestimate my need for artistic release, thereby given cause for Mike to get the following message from the Director of the San Antonio Zoo:

"Mr. Deutsch: We have tranquilized your wife after she was found fingerpainting the side of the endangered white rhino. We also have reason to believe she's led the white handed gibbons in a Jackson Pollock exercise that our Zoo Keepers are attempting to hose off the front gate. If you could come collect her at your earliest convenience, she keeps mumbling something about 'lizards,' and our reptile collection is too valuable to leave to chance. You don't think she'd try to come back and teach the komodo dragon how to draw, do you?"

Friday, October 27, 2006

Texas Book Festival!

When will you be at the festival this weekend? My son is so excited to come down and buy his own copy (the other was from the Library) of Little Bunny Kung Fu I wanted to know if you would be signing copies?
Thanks, and hope to see you this weekend,

This was an email from a parent of a child who will be coming to the book festival starting tomorrow. I needed this email, as I am running around doing a fairly good impression of a chicken sans head!

We had issues with our booth, the tent had no walls and we were working in gale winds (no fun). We learned that the old adage "the squeaky wheel gets the oil" still holds true (or "the bitchy publisher gets what she paid for" saying). I got to face off with the ladies who were half set up in our booth spot, and after much map pointing and huffing, they had to haul their stuff down a ways. That was a organizer foul up, not us but it's more fun to yell at Miriam and me, it seems.

Well, I got work to do. Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

For the TX book festival, I'm making a portfolio with images from Camp Lizard, with Leon and Oz as commentators... fun, fun! I'll have to make this an online tour soon. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

imagine THIS is your camp counselor! I based Mr. Beardy on Brisby my bearded dragon. He's not normally this prickly, at the moment he's instructing the campers on some safety rules, and he means business. (Note the whistle... the mark of authority at camp, if I recall!) Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

New character! This is the swordsmith in the grahic novel I'm workin on. He's an older japanese man (here inspecting Kahf's sword). Nice to have other folks to draw, and I'm really looking forward to Mikona (kindofa sausage fest so far). Posted by Picasa

Friday, October 20, 2006

working to get the design of the webcomic page done. This would be a dedicated site to come see my life as a comic (it's getting more comical by the day) Posted by Picasa

What a handsome baby! My little nephew :) Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

We've got Nephew!

An 8 pound 6 oz bundle of boy named William Thomas Deutsch was born tonight! Congrats Tom, Kristi, and Lauren!

Trying to get some new work ready for a conference this weekend. This is the redux of the Day I Won the Zoo story I have. The first one didn't have the colors or the perspective I wanted, but I'm happy with this one. The plane will have my name and the space below is for the title. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Aussie Slang

Though it's research, I'm having a blastie looking up Australian slang. It's mainly for Oz and Mr. Beardy who are Australian lizards in my graphic novel, but I can't help laughing at these I found:

Ankle biter : small child
Banana bender : a person from Queensland (Oz will be from Queensland)
Budgie smugglers : men's bathing costume (doubt I'll find use for this one)
Bushman's hanky : Emitting nasal mucus by placing one index finger on the outside of the nose (thus blocking one nostril) and blowing. (I call that a "Snot Rocket")
Chuck a sickie : take the day off sick from work when you're perfectly healthy (nice!)
Dead dingo's donger, as dry as a : dry (I mean, what the?!)
Dead horse : Tomato sauce (Mike would agree)
Figjam : "F*ck I'm good; just ask me". Nickname for people who have a high opinion of themselves. (ok, not for the kid's book, but it's funny)
Flat out like a lizard drinking : flat out, busy (interesting...)
Gyno : gynaecologist (that's for dad!)
Holy dooley! : an exclamation of surprise = "Good heavens!", "My goodness!" "Good grief!" or similar (that's just too cute, Oz'll have to say that from time to time!)
Liquid laugh : vomit (hahahahaha)
Mappa Tassie : map of Tasmania - a woman's pubic area (tell that to your patients, dad!)
Rack off : push off! get lost! get out of here! also "rack off hairy legs!".
Rip snorter :
great, fantastic - "it was a rip snorter of a party"
Root (verb and noun) : synonym for f*ck in nearly all its senses: "I feel rooted"; "this washing machine is rooted"; "(s)he's a good root". A very useful word in fairly polite company. (Ok, it's inevitable that at some point the bearded dragon will go "Oh, for root's sake!")
Shark biscuit : somebody new to surfing
Spewin' : very angry
Stickybeak : nosy person
Technicolor yawn : vomit (I'm getting the feeling that Aussies drink and puke A LOT!)
Useful as an ashtray on a motorbike / tits on a bull : unhelpful or incompetent person or thing - "he, she or it is about as useful as tits on a bull" etc. etc.
White pointers : topless (female) sunbathers

Fun, eh?

Friday, October 06, 2006

this was fun :) Posted by Picasa

Finished "Beauty Brew" and it was a fairly successful experiment where I converted a pencil drawing into black lines, printed, watercolored over the drawing with the lightbox, scanned in color, fit with digital drawing, then tweaked. All this to keep me from drawing it again, because I notice I lose something fresh when it's redrawn sometimes. *Note, that's my Tokay gecko on the cauldron, and there's a tongue acting as bookmark. I also like the black widows she's pouring into the potion, too. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 05, 2006

I've gone back and rethunk (that a word?) my website again. I actually looked through about a hundred illustrator's websites, and many of them made me shudder, but the ones I liked a lot had a simple set up. The white cards on top will have a preview image on them corresponding to their portfolios. I am going to take out the design stuff on the illustration site along with the newsletter (didn't have time for it anyway) and the sketchbook feature since my blog has sketches. I'm happier with this set up now. More to come... Posted by Picasa

This is unusual, but it's Mike's Birthday Present. It's sort of an in joke, that to be honest, it's been so long, I started forgetting about it. Something about a conversation about the prefix "dura" and how I didn't know it could be used for other words like "duratruck" or "duralast" ect... I don't know who said dura-borse, but it was supposed to be a horse/bicycle combination. For several years Mike wanted me to draw his duraborse, so now, finally, here it is. :) Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Someone got a piggy bank and some moola from Nana and Pop! She's a cutie! Posted by Picasa