Illustration Friday: Whimsical

Drawn with Pentel Sign pen on marker paper, colored digitally © 2015 Stephanie Smith

I couldn’t resist this week’s Illustration Friday word: “whimsical.”

I also decided to experiment a bit with some new digital brushes I hadn’t used before, so the colors are a little different than my usual. It was refreshing to use color again, after spending nearly all of “Inktober” working in black-and-white!

Illustration Friday: Stuffed

Copyright 2015 Stephanie Smith

Copyright 2015 Stephanie Smith Drawn with Black and Grey Pentel Color Brushes on marker paper over a pencil sketch.

This week’s Illustration Friday word is “stuffed” and out of all my fat animal doodles this little mouse won out.

Remember, #Inktober is still going strong over on my social media feeds, so head on over for the doodles and other drawings that are showing up there!


Illustration Friday: Star

Drawn for Illustration Friday in October 2015

Drawn for Illustration Friday in October 2015, copyright 2015 Stephanie Smith

Today’s post does double-duty for #Inktober and for #IllustrationFriday, which had the prompt “Star” this week.

I’m still keeping up with the Inktober challenge, posting a drawing or sketch every day for the month of October on my social media feeds. Follow along with @Critterwings on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

This drawing was made with a LePen Technical Drawing Brush pen on Stratmore smooth bristol paper. I had no idea LePen made a brush pen! Not bad responsiveness, the felt nib was a lot softer than some of the similar models from Pitt or Sakura. I also used a white gel ballpoint for some of the smaller stars in the sky.

Illustration Friday: Ink

© 2015 Stephanie Smith

© 2015 Stephanie Smith

Finally a return to Illustration Friday! They picked an appropriate word for the start of Inktober, and just when I was challenged to add more solid blacks to my artwork (although I’m not sure this is exactly what was intended…)

Drawn with the Pentel Color Brush (supplemented with some old fashioned regular ink) on Canson Marker paper.

Illustration Friday: Sweater

Mommy’s Sweater

This year I plan to participate in Illustration Friday again as much as possible. I’m kicking it off with this week’s word and a quick drawing, “Mommy’s Sweater,” inspired by the cold, cold winter we’ve been having this year. It just makes me want to snuggle up all cozy like she is!

It was drawn with pencil on sketchpaper and colored in Photoshop. Just a quickie, this time!

Illustration Friday: Equipment

 Garden Equipment Sketch
click to enlarge

I finally had a moment to take a break from other things, sit down and do a quick sketch for this week’s Illustration Friday. Nothing fancy, just a fast still life in ink on smooth bristol paper, 9×12 inches. For all that I’ve been thinking about my garden lately, and puttering about in it with this very equipment when I have some time (and the weather cooperates), the yard is still pretty sad. My big accomplishment of the spring was pulling up a bug chunk of the ivy that’s devouring the back yard, but there’s still quite a bit. And it looks like the poison ivy has  made a comeback…

Still, this weekend promises to hold enough nice weather for me to get my tomato plants in the ground, once I clear their bed. And last weekend I had just enough time to plant some seeds before the gentle rains of the past few days started, just what those tiny seeds needed to get a good start. Bit by bit it’s coming together as everything — including me! — recovers from a freakishly snowy winter.

Meanwhile, I’m still hard at work on those flower drawings! Even though they’re not as time-sensitive as the real plants, I can’t wait to add them to the Critterwings store, especially for the new stickers and baby clothes available at Redbubble as I mentioned in my last post. I’m having far too much fun with these!

Illlustration Friday: Dip


Quick Tango

Well, this one was finished in time only on a technicality… thank goodness the Illustration Friday website is on Pacific Standard Time! Another stab at something different… unlike last week, which was all old-school paint-on-acetate, this week it’s all digital, with no “real” media involved!

Every so often I think to myself “hey, I just want to do something really quick, I’ll just draw it right in Photoshop instead of mucking about with the paper and the pens and the scanner and all.” So far, it’s never been the faster way to go. The slippery tablet and inability to turn the paper around to get the right angle both conspire to make what should be nice, simple lines a constant string of do-overs. Oh well, practice makes perfect. I decided to leave my “sketch” layer in the finished drawing, because it seemed to add a nice bit of extra movement and texture, and since I’d ordinarily consider something with this level of detail a study or a sketch rather than a finished drawing.

It’s been spring-cleaning season around here, but in between getting the garden ready for planting and cleaning the house I’ve been hitting the drawing table. I have a few projects that need to be finished in the next few weeks… I’ll be sharing them here when they’re done!

Illustration Friday: Rescue


I missed out on “expired” for last week’s Illustration Friday, but this week it was actually my day job that came to the “rescue” with this illustration of a cowboy riding to the rescue.   This is a work-in-progress for an event poster which is allowing me a rare bit of illustration fun, and a bit of a digression from my usual style. I hope they keep this design, which will have a retro movie-poster vibe, instead of going with the fall-back, which is a much “safer” but more boring design with pretty landscape photography.

This illustration was based on a stock photo we’d bought, although I had to add in a lot of details, including redrawing the horse’s head, which was at an odd angle. This is the unretouched artwork, which was reverse-painted with acrylic paints on acetate and scanned with a black sheet behind it, about 11×17 inches.

I needed a “rescue” this week, as I spent half the weekend with a sore jaw (aftermath of a root canal) and didn’t get nearly as much done as I’d wanted. But I did have a chance to start researching my next personal project, which I’m looking forward to sharing in the next few months.

Illustration Friday: Subterranean


It Starts Underground…
click to enlarge

With such a deeply evocative word for Illustration Friday this week, and feeling bad about missing last week’s word, I spent a little extra time to play with my watercolors. It’s been way too long since I splashed around with real paint…. ahhhhh. I’m also clearly feeling the spring, as the bulbs in my garden are already popping up all over. So much energy goes on underground before we see those tiny green shoots….

I’m not quite sure if I’m completely done with it, but here it is.  Micron pen and watercolor on 140lb Canson watercolor paper, 9×12 inches.

For those who are interested, RedBubble has recently introduced some new products to their lineup: Greeting cards in two sizes, postcards, and the option to print images on the backs of shirts instead of the front… with the promise of more to come.  So far everything I’ve ordered from them has been gorgeous, and they have some of the nicest T-shirts out there. Check out the offerings in my RedBubble Gallery and see if anything catches your eye!

Illustration Friday: Perspective

Christianna Posed
click to enlarge

This week’s sketch for Illustration Friday is a relatively quick ink drawing based on a photograph generously offered for use by a lovely lady from a RedBubble group devoted to portraits of fellow members.  I chose this particular image because not only is it a very sassy pose, but for the practice in drawing the human figure in extreme perspective — always a challenge! This image can be seen a bit larger in my RedBubble gallery.

Not much else to say this week except to let everyone out there know that Zazzle is having another sale! This week, through March 8, they are offering $4 off all t-shirts and other apparel items — including baby clothes and sweatshirts — with the coupon code 4OFFPATTYTEE

Here are a few suggestions from my Critterwings shop, although you can also customize your very own shirt too. 🙂