Cupid and Psyche

Retold by M. Charlotte Craft. Illustrated by Kinuko Craft. I know everyone hates Valentines Day because it makes them feel horribly alone, but I can’t help but love it. Not because I’m married either.  I’ve always loved it,  even when I was single.  There’s so much candy! And, to be perfectly honest,  I love when…

Sirin ~ Pinterest Inspiration

Most of my inspiration for my painting “Sirin” came from my general love of Russian Fairytales and Medieval painting. I spent a lot of time looking at 3 books I have on Russian Lacquer Miniatures. The art is usually on a black background with strong red and orange colors, with some lovely blue and green…

Sirin ~Songs of Joy

Sirin 9″x12″ gouache, acrylic, and pencil on 185 lb paper I love Russian fairytales, folktales, and Slavic mythology. The Russian Sirin is thought to be a descendant of the Greek Sirin. Said to reside near the Garden of Eden, they sang beautiful songs of joy. Some stories tell that only truly happy people could hear…

Books, Books, Books

This year I’ve gone through my books and sold quite a few that I realized I was never going to use, mostly sewing related. As I did, I noticed some holes in my collection. I asked Mikael for a few and he ended up getting me everything, including a surprise James Jean book. We have…

Twinkle Twinkle Little Bat~ Elstir Wips

“Twinkle, twinkle, little bat! How I wonder what you’re at! Up above the world you fly, Like a tea tray in the sky. Twinkle, twinkle, little bat! How I wonder what you’re at!” ~Lewis Carroll As I mentioned before, Elstir is supposedly an Irish version of Esther, which means “star”. I like that she’s my…

Elstir Pinterest Inspiration Board

Before Pinterest I used to have stacks of paper all over. I’ve written before about how Pinterest’s feed change made it useless, but it’s still very useful if you actually need a place to store images. The idea, drawing, and color palette for Elstir came first. But afterwards I went through some of my favorite…

Elstir ~completed painting

I finally finished Elstir. She started as a postcard for the Bat World Sanctuary charity. I liked the drawing so much that I really wanted to make it into a painting. I’ll eventually scan her in and add her to my portfolio, but until then I took some photos. The top picture is the closest…

It Rained Last Night

I always feel like listening to Nick Cave when it rains. Taking a break from Drawvember this weekend because the world is crazy.

The Blood is the Life

After 8 years of vegetarianism I’ve started eating meat again thanks to my gluten intolerance. I’m also not able to eat tofu, so it was kind of a done deal for me. But I have conflicting feelings about it. I don’t generally talk about it unless asked but, I became a vegetarian because I’m not…

Drawlloween is over but Drawvember is here!

I had an amazing time doing Drawlloween. It helped me loosen up and be less self conscious about posting sketches and off the cuff drawings. As soon as I finish painting “Elstir” I have a couple of these to refine and paint. I found it deeply inspiring and over all so much fun. And, it…

Pinterest~ Realgar and Gold

The top left image is from the Halloween Tarot by Bajema. Even though I don’t collect tarot, I fell in love with this project and ordered them.  The golden film stills are from Fritz Lang’s two part epic, “Die Nibelungen.” Everyone is far more familiar with Wagner’s version, but the plot here is different. It’s…

Drawlloween: Werewolf

If you’re already following my Instagram these are old, but what I love about my blog is that I’m able to talk a little more about them. I love drawing werewolves. The first two are from about 7 years ago, inspired by the Warren Zevon song, “Werewolves of London.” I had read a great story…

Beauties of the Night~ tonight!

If you’re in the Mascoutah, Illinois area, please check out Alexi Era Gallery’s show: Beauties of the Night. “Beauties of the Night” is an awareness and fundraising exhibition for theBat World Sanctuary. The Exhibition will feature artworks on postcards from artists all around the world. All postcards will be priced $5-$50, and available to take home…

Drawlloween: Devil

Beelzebub, the Spanish Fly. I’m painting and making Halloween banner today, so I’m posting an old, very old (10 years) pen drawing that I still love. He’s a saucy gent! I love his bedroom eyes.

Drawlloween: Ghost

“Come and play with us, Danny. Forever… and ever… and ever…” The Shining scared the ever living crap out of me when I was a kid. I remember thinking that Jack Nicholson turned into a werewolf and was chasing his son through the maze. If you get a chance, watch “Room 237,” a documentary about…

Drawlloween 2015!

Drawlloween is here! I won’t be able to participate every day, but I’d like to do 2 times a week. Here’s the list in case anyone else would like to join in!

Pinterest~ Dark Fantasy

I am so in love with that first pin. I found it here: Sweet Leigh. The whole editorial is from Italian Vogue and it is just bonkers good. Total Game of Thrones, but better. If I wrote, I’d totally write a fantasy GOT rip off with a gorgeous black princess version of Daenerys Targaryen. Not…

Red Jay

I had a great time working on this commission. I don’t get to draw men as often as I like. The client was very specific, but also incredibly easy going which made for a delightful working relationship. I’m fairly in love with the color choices. I originally have a deep, deep red background, but he…

Gluten is my Enemy

The oddest, scariest thing happened to me over the course of the last week and a half. My hands seized up and stopped working. I suppose it was actually my joints, but you get the picture. When I was pregnant with Tony I developed an allergy to rye. The kind of allergy where you break…

Unicorns ~ work in progress

I’m working on my unicorns and quite pleased with them so far~ This is Magnolia.And this is Rose A few years ago I drew my disheveled unicorn, “Keeping the Dream Alive.” It was a bit of a joke on the perfection of unicorns. After all, it takes a lot of work to look that magical….

Pinterest~ Indian Summer

Late August, September, and October are Indian Summer here. It’s humid with no breeze, esp at night. As much as I hate the heat I do love the pale blue sky with the golden green leaves. There’s so much to look at. I just want to paint it all.

So ready for Fall Fashion!

Last week we had a brief moment of cooler weather which I took advantage of. I mentioned that I inherited some clothes from my husband’s great Aunt, and here are a couple of them. The soft brown tea length skirt has wooden button that go down the side. I had to take it in about…

Pinterest ~cool Autumn mindscape

All I can think about the last two days is cool weather. It’s finally shown up, at least for the moment. I’ve already had hot cocoa twice.  Pinterest stopped working a while ago, maybe a year ago, when they changed their algorithm. But it was one of two platforms I actually like (the other being…

Sewing Dreams- Once Upon a Time- Mary Margaret

It’s summer and I have a baby, so that means that like it or not, there’s a lot of sitting involved. I decided to revisit the glorious train wreck that is Once Upon a Time. I got hooked on it a few years ago and it remains my favorite guilty tv pleasure. The acting is…

Meow’Dib -He Is the Hissatz Caterach!

I first read Dune as a teen and every few years I go back to it. It never ceases to put pieces of my life into perspective. For years I’ve wanted to name a cat “Muad’Dib”, which inevitably metamorphosed into “Meow’Dib” because I love puns and am obviously incredibly lame. I can’t recommend Frank Herbert’s…

Autumn Sewing Plans

Even though it’s only August, the trees here have already started to turn. I’ve been thinking about Autumn and everything that goes with it: shorter days, cooler weather, beautiful foliage, PSL (and everything pumpkin- I don’t care! I love it!), and cute clothes. Ahhhhhhhhh the clothes! Karl will be starting Kindergarten which means I’ll have…

7 Years? Happy Anniversary!

August 2nd was our anniversary. Seven years of marriage! We think. We actually can’t remember. Two days before, I was lying in bed trying to nap while our baby Tony was napping- yes, sleep when the baby sleeps is the best advice ever. Suddenly I remembered and texted my husband in the living room- “holy…

All The Better to See You With!

Well, these eyes have finally gone blurry. It’s pretty common for people in my family to need glasses in our early 40s, and sure enough I hit 42 and whammo! My eyes just gave up focusing up close. Reading and more importantly drawing and painting were giving me a headache. I’d heard about Warby Parker…

One Year Later- Living a Flesh and Blood Life

-from an “The Art of Dan Clowes: Modern Cartoonist” I read that a little over a year ago. Afterwards I immediately asked myself, “Does the internet make me happier?” The answer was, “no.” The next question I asked was, “But does it make me a better- and by that I mean a kinder, more considerate,…

The Force is Strong in My Family

I have a painting in the Jedi July show at Hive Gallery in Los Angeles. The show opens July 11th. The painting is titled, “The Force is Strong in My Family.” 9″x12″ Gouache and Acrylic in 185lb paper. I gave Leia a green lightsaber to reflect her original last name, “Organa” and connect her to the…

Roxanne

One of the things I wanted to accomplish with my 2015 Sketchbook Project, “Princess Witch,” was to actually use it as a way to narrow down which ideas I wanted to paint. I started with “Roxanne,” which although simple, is one of my favorites from the series. I chose “Roxanne” as a name bc one…

Eye Shapes and 80s Makeup

After doing a rather tasteful “eye shape” chart I felt the need to bust out and do an alternate version with 80s makeup. The 80s were ALL about tightlining.

Built By Wendy and Burda Easy Geometric Dress

My son Karl just graduated from Preschool and I wanted something special to wear as well as something to wear with the Twin Peaks collar necklace I made last year. I found this lovely geometric fabric at Joanne’s in the quilting section. I washed it a couple of times and it got very soft, which…

We are all Wonder Women! Happy Mother’s Day!

“Princess Diana” I got an early Mother’s Day gift from my husband, a book called,”Wonder Woman- Amazon-Hero-Icon- ” Which was fun because I’d just finished an illustration of Princess Diana on Paradise Island before she becomes Wonder Woman- sort of a “what if?” Anyone following my Instagram knows how long I’ve struggled with this picture….

Princess Witch and the Sketchbook Tour 2015

My sketchbook project, “Princess Witch” is online over at the Sketchbook Project: https://sketchbookproject.com/library/16064 I have trouble expressing how happy this project made me. It provided me with final drawings for future paintings- one in the works right now- and crystalized my vision of this little world that I’ve been working on for the last 5 years….

Simple Modern Sewing- Maternity Dress

I made this dress last year when I was pregnant with Tony. These photos were taken in late August or early September- when I was around 8 months pregnant. The pattern is from the book, Simple Modern Sewing by Shufu To Seikatsu Sha. It’s pattern 3, the “Boatneck Dress. I LOVE this pattern. It’s incredibly…

Mr. Blue Sky

“Hey you with the pretty face! Welcome to the human race!” Mr. Anthony Thorbjorn is 4 months old! I went in for a scheduled c-section in October. Kaiser has upped its game- everything was really nice. After Karl’s disastrous birth (not at a Kaiser) which involved a neglectful midwife, hours of hard labor, & baby…

“We’ll join this cosmic saga”

Happy Valentine’s Day to my beautiful husband, Mikael. Today is one of those days where I don’t want to do anything other than cuddle up with my husband, eat some cookies, and maybe power watch something mindless like “Scrubs.” We’ve both been sick with a sore throat cough so the most romantic thing I can…

Backstrom (imagine skeptical emoji here)

Watched Backstrom last night. I love Rainn Wilson, but I’m over the trope. I was WAY over it while watching House- but the fine supporting cast kept me hooked. “Brilliant Asshole” still has the ability to provide some fun, but it’s going to have to be fresher. I don’t need another “not really racist-sexist cause…

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice~ illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, published 1993. I was and am a big fan of the husband and wife illustrating team, Leo and Diane Dillon. I have a number of their books and would be hard pressed to pick a favorite. Nancy Willard crafts a sweet rhyming tale of the lovely apprentice Sylvia who apprentices with the…

Sketchbook Project~ Doodles and Sketches

I thought I’d missed the deadline to send in my Sketchbook Project, but luckily I haven’t! It’s due in March. Last night I stayed up and collected all my doodles (they hardly qualify as sketches now) in one place. As soon as I have a final count for the book then it’ll be on to…