Saturday, October 13, 2012

Concept Picture Book

Creative Sorting
Organized Books
Mary Shares Her Love of Language 
Pages from a picture book I've been writing and illustrating for over a year.  Email me if you are interested in seeing more.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Critic Cats

Travi, the orange tabby, and Booker, the black and white cow-cat, enjoy keeping me company while I paint.  These critics can easily be bought with belly rubs and catnip.

Awww. Look at Sleepy Bear.

The Approach
The Inquiry
Who could resist approaching a sleepy bear with his butt in the air?  Unexpected friendships fascinate me.  However, introducing yourself to a sleeping bear may not lead to a friendly encounter.
The Response

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Are you tired? Oh man. I'm just dragon.

Phineas Astor MacDinglebrick aka "Pam"
Late night musings gave birth to this lovable but gruff looking dragon.  Life isn't easy for a young dragon with lavender coloring and friends who endlessly tease him.  With those huge horns and dangerous teeth I don't worry too much about him though.

Future Pilot

Future Pilot
Backyard adventures soar so much higher from the seat of a jumbo jet airplane swing.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Red Riding Hood

Red Riding Hood
I wanted the impact of the red cape to grab your attention, the detail of her eye and her necklace to draw you in further, and the silhouette of the wolf to leave you wondering.  Does she know the wolf lurks behind her and does he watch her as prey or protector?

Monday, October 8, 2012

Sun Kissed Tulip

Sun Kissed Tulip
Playing with watercolor pencils and Winsor & Newton Designer Brilliant Concentrated Watercolour allowed me to push the depths and details of this simple tulip.


Monet in His Garden
This 37 inch by 4 foot painting in acrylic pushed me out of my comfort zone, but I love saying (with a wink) that I own an original Monet painting.

Fall Leaves

Unaccompanied Sonata
I love painting nature and the colors of autumn always inspire me.  Color so rich, varied, and fleeting you just have to grab a honey crisp apple and take a long walk to surround yourself in such splendor.

Commissioned Horses

Maple Treasure
Butter Cream
Commissioned watercolors of gorgeous horses.  I worked from photos because why would a horse sit still for a portrait when what she loves to do is gallop.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Ripley: Cat on the go (sometimes)

Meet Ripley.  Not only does Ripley rock some awesome hats, but he's also a master at living a well balanced life.  Observe as he plays some fusion Polka, then he catches a comfortable cat nap, before he perfects his ollie and kickflip.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

About me...

The first time my preschool held an art contest I won.  I've had paint under my nails and ink on my nose ever since.

My first and my greatest watercolor teacher is my mom, Cynthia Black.  More on her to come.

Between honors courses and a variety of school activities I flew through all of my high school art classes and had to create an independent study course to continue developing my watercolor skills.

Again in college I took every drawing and painting class available then created my own independent study to research and try my hand at writing and illustrating children's books.

Picture books have long held a treasured place in my heart.  A healthy collection of kid lit bursts from my bookshelves.

I have worked with children's books for many years first in retail sales and currently with a school library acquisition company.
My studio has a great south-facing window that streams in lots of sunlight on those cold Minnesota winters.  Note the stool next to my desk.  My cat sits there to critique my work.