Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Year, New Goals

This year just feels exciting. Welcome 2015!

I haven't been on the blog in about a months time because at a news paper, the Christmas season is extremely busy. That is what I do 40+ hours a week other than creating cute drawings and paintings. I work as one of the ad graphic designers at my local newspaper. I help bring real estate, car, auction, and all other ads in between to you (the locals) on a daily reading basis.

Anyway, I am announcing upfront on this blog that I am going to give my all during the next 3 to 4 months of creating a whole new image collection for the 2015 art licensing trade show. I want to try my best to produce a wide range of images, so I may be leaving the blog neglected for a bit. I only have so much time in a day left when I get off work after 5 or 6 at night.

Thank you in advance for understanding.

~ Val

Saturday, November 8, 2014


I sketched this piece out last night.
Watercolor paper, 9x12 with acrylics/watercolors/pencils
I tried to take a few more photos of the process, but I tend to mix colors and work pretty fast before they dry. That is the beauty and beast of acrylic paints. They are fast drying. As I make more of these on paper, I am learning different techniques and getting more used to the medium.

 And one picture to show you that I do have a helper. This time I decided to take a break because she was being pretty persistent.

 The title of this piece has changed three times today. Landing, the title of the blog post. Then light landing because of the reindeer landing on the light strand. The final title of this painting turned into Winter Magic.

This is the final picture. Thanks for stopping by.

Rethinking My Facebook Point of View

I decided to take my Facebook fan page down. I was only connecting to 2 or 3 people per post, and that is ridiculous. I have decided that I will be using blogger as my main posting site. If you are friends on my main Facebook page, you might see links to blogger. I apologize in advance if you feel my blog posting is too spammie.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

woodland express

This is my newest work of art for the week of October 27-31 2014, titled woodland express.
Here are some progress shots:

The drawing on watercolor paper.
I started painting on the squirrel first:
This is all done on watercolor paper with acrylics.
I didn't take any more photos of the process...but here is the final image. :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A little welcome mat

I posted the before and afters on my Facebook page while I was creating this piece of art last week.

I started off this time by sketching directly to the watercolor paper and then I painted the image with acrylics.
The background was added in Photoshop.
The welcome message was added in Photoshop.
That means it can be changed to say whatever you want it to say, different font or color etc.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Just a little update...

It as been a long time since I worked or used my Facebook fan page, but I am trying to get this (blogger) and the (Facebook fan page) connected with the same post. I finally figured out the promotion button was actually called a page badge. So with a little help from google, I now have my badge on the right side of the blog layout.

I'm off to search for a program that will allow me to post to both.

To answer one question really quickly here, I no longer sell images for tagging purposes. I am signed with a licensing company and am working on building my portfolio and possibly in the near future what might be products sold at a big box store near you.
I do not have a zazzle store and I will not be setting up one in the future. I want to make sure that all images licensed are not being offered in any form anywhere other than the contracts that are made. Thank you for your understanding.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Making a List...

He's making a list...
This is my finished artwork for the weekend. The sketch on the right was made several months back. I decided this weekend to break out some of my old Christmas sketches and get them put to paper. They aren't doing me any good if they just hang around in my make shift sketch book.
As you can see from the image, I don't deviate far from the original. I did drop the star and snowflake from the final piece.
 Let me tell you, trying to come up with a unique looking Santa is kind of hard. This is one version. I am certain I will mess around with trying something different the next time around.
I am getting more used to painting directly onto the watercolor paper with acrylics.

Method used for the final piece:
First the sketch on copy paper
Transferred to watercolor paper
Acrylics and prisma color pencils

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Rolling Thunder..

The rolling sound of thunder outside and the flashes of light off in the distance can only mean one thing out in the country...crappy internet connection. I swear, when the cable companies cannot hook you up to high speed internet and your only hope is the dish hooked up to the top of the grain elevator you have a problem. Misting outside of any kind and you have no connection or if you are lucky, like tonight, you have somewhat of a connection with the longest page loads of all time. It takes me back to days of yore when I would type in a password and dial up the connection. There would be a buzzing and clicking of code dialing across the phone line (land line, yes) and then slow page loads and then much visiting on chat sites. : ) I had my priorities back then. 
Since it took a miracle to get to this site before the downpour, I can not load the Christmas mice painting. It keeps timing out.
I just wanted to vent my frustration.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Christmas Mice

This is a drawing I sketched out a couple of months back. I have a few more Christmas themed drawings from last year that I am finally going to get around to painting as well. I posted the original drawing on Facebook on October 7, so if you follow me there you have seen the mice.
I do have the final painting finished. I finished it on the night of October 7 but I didn't feel like taking another photo.
At this point, it is time to drag out the scanner again. I will be so thrilled when I have a fully functioning work environment at home. Right now while we are in the process of moving, which has been well over a year, I draw while watching TV, paint on the kitchen table, and then drag out all of my computer equipment in my bedroom. When the move is finally complete, I will actually have an entire basement as my at home studio! It is pretty exciting and exhausting at the same time.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Frogs Frogs and More Frogs

Flying High
It's almost fall and the retail stores are already putting out Halloween themed items. Today, the temperature outside would tell you that it is already here! The high for today was lower 60s. I'm used to upper 90s low 100s in my area of the country. I had to find a jacket this morning before going shopping. On the bright side, the lower temperature was a nice change and I haven't felt so drained today. Heat is definitely draining here at times in Oklahoma.

This is painting number one out of a series of four Halloween witch frogs I completed last week. I am trying to do at least 4 images with each drawing I make.
For those who want to know how this was created...I drew the frog out on watercolor paper and used acrylics to create him and his 3 other froggy friends  : ) Completed in photoshop. These images can be arranged into any size needed. If you are interested in licensing this image for products please visit my website to learn more about how to contact my agent.

~ Val

Monday, September 1, 2014

Fear, Stress and Creativity

I'm saving this as a draft first so I can look back and think about this post before letting it go live. (You might find that line funny if you continue reading)

I have been stressing out about what to type for over a week now and I was feeling fear about not posting anything at all...and this is a vicious cycle that continues week after week.

Fear. We all know it and if you're an artist in any way, I am sure that you have had the same thought patterns go through your mind as well.

What is nobody reads this. What if my art isn't good enough. What if I sound stupid. 

I over think things and then panic sets in and I end up not doing anything at all. I have to overcome the What ifs.... and move on to the Just dos. I have a pile of drawings that never make it beyond my sketch folder because I like it but then think... what if someone has done this already! Well probably in one form or another but they won't have it with my flair and style.

When fear and panic set it I am just as good as done for a couple of hours until it has passed. My mind closes up and nope your not getting any new ideas from this one. On the plus side, once I conquer that little bump in the road I am able to pick myself up and learn and try new things.

There are a few blog post out there about fear and stress. They both block creativity that is for certain, but here is how I move on.

I do step back and acknowledge the fact that it is just fear, my fears that are blocking my process and I take the time to relax. I know that if I push myself to create when panicking about some unknown that I will fail. So an hour or so...sometimes a couple of days and I am back to creating.

I will go outside to calm down. Unplug from the media, phone, computer... there is something constantly being tossed our way and too much of that and I am done.
Listen to music I like.
Just laying in bed with silence for a few minutes can do the trick.

I will try my best to just start posting without the fear of rejection. I will try to start sharing my creations with others. (the block on this is the advice not to post poorly made items with others until they are perfected...well, the perfect in my minds eye may never happen)

The trying is better than the nothing and not moving forward.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

torn between two worlds...

I have trouble with the idea of running both a website and a blog as separate items, so if you have visited either place in the last month you have noticed a little bit of trial and error. I think I will keep the two separate but linked together. I would love to set up my full site on blogger, but haven't found a template I just love and I really don't have the time to tweak the HTML or css myself. There is a button in the page bar above that leads to my website... but it is really just a short and simple portfolio of artwork. The two combined would be ideal... but alas it will have to wait for another day.

Greeting Card Universe Store Reopened!

I started a greeting card store years ago, like 2007 to be exact. I have decided to reopen the shop and here are the first few options that...