On rare occasions I will create a drawing that I am totally pleased with. I know this because gazing upon said drawing feels like looking into a mirror reflecting back exactly whats is in my heart & brain. This is one of those times people! A tiny rufous & black elephant shrew and some snouty ink lettering.
Starting tomorrow I'll be participating in the 100 day project. You can follow along as I draw comics via my Instagram at @feral_pony_illustration
The project was started by Elle Luna and the idea is to do a small creative something everyday for 100 days and share as you go along.
I decided to use the 100 day project to work in a more focused way on my comics starring insectivores like bats and shrews. I've been working on these on the edges of time and sketchbooks for awhile and have bunches of sketches and ideas. I plan to spend my 100 days really developing the characters and story, drawing panels that include all the interiors and backgrounds that I prefer to ignore, and hopefully completing and inking a story as you watch.
I've toyed around with making comics since junior high. In high school my best friend and I created a collaborative comic about a punk rock zombie girl who attacked jocks while they were drinking in the woods. Hmm, maybe we should bring that one back now that zombies are so popular ;) But I've always shied away from dedicating myself to bringing any of my comic ideas to completion. I am actually not sure I can do it. It's funny after 15 years or so working as an artist to admit you are actually kinda insecure and a bit afraid to try something. I mean I've tackled bunches of critiques, museum shows, various mediums, various styles, teaching, a career change from gallery artist to illustrator, a realistic portrait of a heron... why does this give me pause?
Well, it involves a lot of the things I think I stink at. My weaknesses include commitment, getting easily bored with drawing backgrounds, and a nagging fear about my ability to convincingly draw the same character over and over. (no you should totally still hire me!)
So we shall see how this all plays out! I'm making the public commitment to focus on this specific project which is near and dear to me but often gets swept under the rug as other opportunities arise.
It should be lots of fun to follow along with the 100 day projects of other artists and makers too! The official hashtag is #the100dayproject and the hashtag for my 100 days is #100daysof mammalcomics but I warn you in advance there will be some insects in there too. Who can commit to a hashtag that also sounds clever and concise for 100 days after all?
Are you participating in #the100dayproject too? Let me know in the comments so I can follow you!
I'm very glad to be part of a 2-person exhibition at iMOCA / Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art that runs through March 20.
The exhibition Animal Umwelt brings together the work of Jenny Kendler and Molly Schafer as well as select works from the Endangered Species Print Project, which the two artists conceived in 2009.
If you are in Indianapolis or up for a day-trip from Chicago I hope you can check it out. My friend Jenny Kendler is the other artist in the exhibiton
Jenny and I co-founded Endangered Species Print Project together. We were happy to have a selection of prints we created for the project along with the work of several ESPP guest artists displayed at iMOCA as well.
Obviously I have nothing but good things to say about this wonderful exhibition :) You can read more about the show here.
I'm excited to announce that my first piece for Minted is now live on minted.com. Minted holds monthly design challenges and voters rate the best pieces in a highly competitive process. The winning pieces are produced and sold in the Minted collection.
I entered my watercolor painting of a pronghorn in an art print competition held by Minted and Domino magazine. The pronghorn is available as a high quality art print in a variety of sizes and framing options.
You can visit my store on Minted by clicking here. I'll be adding new products in the months to come so please stay tuned!
Due to popular request from my wonderful ESPP customers I am excited announce that Endangered Species Print Project is offering holiday cards for the very first time!
I created the two watercolor paintings that are used for the cards. The charming Vancouver Island Marmots which was one of my very first paintings for ESPP and a brand new painting of an enigmatic Galapagos penguin.
One dollar of every box of cards sold is donated to conservation efforts. Pretty awesome!
The cards are printed locally here in Chicago and bundled with envelopes made from sustainable forests.
Find out more about the cards in the ESPP shop!
I'm excited to say that I am now a Minted designer and will have my own store on Minted.com next month. My antelope painting is one of the pieces chosen by Minted & Domino Magazine in an online art challenge.
I'll update you all when my Minted store is open, Mr. Antelope is available, and as I launch some exciting new products in the months to come.
I was interviewed by Matt Podolsky for the Eyes On Conservation (EOC) podcast. The interview focuses on my work as co-creator of The Endangered Species Print Project but I also discuss illustration projects I'm currently working on so it's a good chance to hear how I think and what I think about (mostly shrews and bats).
EOC airs a weekly podcast featuring projects at the intersection of art, science, and conservation. Interesting stuff! You can listen to the episode here.
Jenny Kendler, the other half of ESPP and I chatted about our individual art backgrounds, why we started ESPP, and how we collaborate with other artists. Jenny even reveals her favorite ESPP print! And if you listen you will find out what plant or animal species will be depicted in the next ESPP print.
Another exhibition I am in this month Dress/Shield at Lump Gallery in Raleigh, NC. Lump Gallery is an awesome place that has been showing rad art for 20 years now! I've shown with them numerous times and I'm thankful for all the support Bill and company have shown me over the years. From Lump's announcement:
Lump is pleased to announce its 2nd installment for Lumpxx, celebrating Lump's 20th season of programming. Dress/Shield, an exhibition of new works by six women artists who have a history of showing at Lump. Dress/Shield will run from October 2 to October 31, 2015 with an opening reception on Friday, October 2nd from 6 - 9pm.
The artists featured in the exhibition include Leah Bailis, Philadelphia, PA; Lee Delegard, Brooklyn, NY; Lydia Moyer, Covesville, VA; Molly Schafer, Chicago, IL; Tory Wright, Greenville, SC; and Laura Sharp Wilson, Salt Lake City, UT. Their working processes are diverse, encompassing sculpture, textiles, video, photography, and works on paper.
For the artists, their identity as women underpins the work they make. Individually, their voices are distinct and varied. This group show is an opportunity to see how the perception of those voices changes when they are in chorus and to explore the connections between the work of women artists who are disparate in geography and media while sharing a formative connection to North Carolina and Lump.
My watercolor painting City Coyote is included in the City Creatures exhibition currently on view at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. The City Creatures art exhibit explores human relationships with nonhuman animals in everyday urban worlds, from our backyards to our bioregion. The exhibit aims to help Chicagoland residents notice and pay closer attention to our nonhuman neighbors and features artwork from the Center for Humans and Nature book of the same title, published in the fall of 2015 by the University of Chicago Press.
I haven't had a chance to see the show yet myself and was out of town for the opening. I hope to check it out very soon!
If you are interested in reading more about the City Creatures project check out this special issue of Minding Nature the online journal of the Center for Humans and Nature.
Revised sketch of this spitballs on the school bus situation. I decided to swap out the human children for animals. So this is still an interspecies school but more on a non-human mammals level. More to come as I refine and ultimately decide if these characters live in a fully rendered color world or in my more comics style. Any opinions?