Monday, December 27, 2010

Interview on Karin Cameron's Blog

Back in November I had my first ever Facebook giveaway!  The lucky winner, drawn at random, received a print of one of my pieces, and a surprise custom piece of art as well.  Unknowingly, participants in the giveaway were asked to list their favorite animal and food.  The winner received a small painting depicting their favorite animal eating their favorite food. 

The winner of my first giveaway was Karin Cameron, and above is the custom piece she received, of a dog eating peaches!  Karin is a children's writer and fellow SCBWI member who has a blog called Karin Won't Stop Talking.  As a result of the giveaway, Karin kindly interviewed me for her blog.  You can read it here:

I'll be having more giveaways in the future, so check back here on the blog and on my Facebook fan page!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Foxes on Illustration Rally

It's been a busy Christmas week!  Lots going on and I'm technically on vacation, so this post is originating from across the country from where I usually am.

This past Monday, my Christmas foxes was featured on the Illustration Rally blog! 

Illustration Rally is a blog run by UK-based illustrator Natsuki Otani, where illustrators can send in artwork that relates to a seasonal theme.  A few months back was a Halloween rally, and currently submissions are being accepted for a Christmas theme.

My illo was posted on December 20th, and you can see it here:

Check out all the other cool Christmas illustrations!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Illustration Friday: Mail

Mrs. Fox and Little Fox went into town to check their mail and do some holiday shopping!

Happy holidays to all!  This is the image for my Christmas cards this year.  Painted in acrylic, acrylic gouache, and colored pencil.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

LA Weekend Part 2: Mizna Wada at Gallery Nucleus

One of my favorite galleries in the Los Angeles area is Gallery Nucleus in downtown Alhambra.  Alhambra is a town about four miles south of Pasadena in the San Gabriel Valley and just a short drive from where I grew up.  I try to stop by there whenever I'm in town to see a show, or just to browse their gift shop/bookstore.  Gallery Nucleus exhibits art by contemporary artists, illustrators, animators, and graphic artists from here and abroad. 

Over Thanksgiving weekend was a show featuring two Japanese artists, Junko Mizuno and Mizna Wada.  This is the second show for the pair at Nucleus.  I like both artists' work, but Mizna has a more whimsical style that is more of my preference.  I first saw Mizna's work on a stationary set at the Wacko/Soap Plant in LA.  She has a distinctive creepy/cute style.  She's done a lot of prints using Print Gocco as in the example below, which I just love!  Nice color palette too!
The Nucleus show didn't include any Gocco prints, mostly paintings and plushes.  I took some photos of the pieces I liked.

Donut girl!
The show ended on November 29th, but if you're ever in the area, be sure to stop by.  Definitely worth the trip!

Sunday, December 05, 2010

LA Weekend Part 1: Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Great view of the Hollywood sign from the main street of the cemetery.
Over Thanksgiving weekend I visited Los Angeles to see my family and get away from the desert for a few days.  It was unusually cold but I had a great time nonetheless. Although I lived there for 30+ years, I had never visited the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.  It's always been on my list of things to see, but I never got around to it, so I figured better late than never.

Some of you may wonder, why would you want to walk around a place filled with dead people?  Well ... I have a macabre fascination with that kind of thing, and I like to pay my respects to those who I admire or liked who have passed on from this world.

Hollywood Forever has been in existence since the late 1800's and is the final resting place of many ordinary Angelenos.  But it's the famous and infamous who are buried there that many come to see.  The office has a free photocopied map of where it's most famous denizens are buried, and the on-site flower/gift shop has a more extensive booklet and map that you can purchase.  More bizarre is the fact that the cemetery hosts cultural events there.  Back in October, Belle and Sebastian held a concert there, and right before the concert there had been a screening of "Trainspotting."  The things I miss when I move away from LA...

Most of the famous buried there are from the early days of Hollywood, many that I don't even recognize.  But there were plenty that I did know and I'll share some of the more memorable ones here.

Mel Blanc, the man who was the voice of countless Warner Bros. cartoon characters, including Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and Porky Pig.

Bugsy Siegel, the gangster who was instrumental in the creation of Las Vegas.

Johnny and Dee Dee Ramone.  Interestingly enough, both deceased Ramones are buried here.  I thought they would have been buried in New York.  Their graves are on opposite ends of the cemetery.

Edward Bunker -- writer, screenwriter and actor.  The man who played Mr. Blue in Reservoir Dogs.

The final photo here is of John Huston's grave.  We had the most difficult time finding this one.  For those planning to visit, beware -- the maps are not quite as accurate as they should be.  For such a world famous film director, he has the most unremarkable gravestone.  I was expecting something larger and fancier, but he had this very simple marker.  It's very easy to overlook.

Walking around the peaceful grounds and seeing his grave, you're reminded that in the end, we all wind up in the same place whether we're famous or not.