Saturday, January 28, 2012

Sketchbook Project: The End!!!

Mermaids, pen. watercolor & acrylic ink on watercolor paper, 10 x 7", 2011.
I just came back from the Post Office; I mailed out my 2012 Sketchbook Project! I'll be nervous until it gets to Brooklyn safely. Philadelphia isn't too far away, so I know it will get there soon. All of the overseas Sketchbook Project participants must get stressed out about shipping their creations.

I ended my "Uncharted Waters" theme the same was I began it...with mermaids!

I really had a great experience with the project, and got to communicate with sketchbookers from all over the world. I can't wait for the tour to start, so I can see everyone's books in person.
 I made the very last page a contents page that lists everything in my book. If you would like to see the whole book before the Sketchbook Project tour starts, click below to visit my Flickr page:

Goodbye, Sketchbook Project!!!!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

First Aid Kit for Amelia's Mag

First Aid Kit, graphite, watercolor, & acrylic ink on watercolor paper, 11 x 10", 2012.
I worked on another illustration for Amelia's Magazine. This time I drew First Aid Kit, a folk group comprised of two sisters, Johanna and Klara. I hadn't really heard of them before this illustration, but have listened to them a lot since; their voices are incredible!

My illustration was based on the video for their song, Emmylou:

The video had a 70s feeling, and I wanted that to also come through in my illustration. It also felt nice to paint something in warm desert colors when the city turned to ice this past weekend. When I heard this kind of country sounding song I assumed that these girls were from somewhere like Texas... It turns out that I was way wrong. They're from Sweden!

They'll be in Philadelphia at the end of March; it would definitely be nice to see them live. All of the videos of their live performances are very impressive.

To read the review of their album in Amelia's Magazine go here:

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Illustration Friday: Prepare

Smile, micron pen and watercolor on watercolor paper, 8x10", 2012.
“Waking up this morning, I smile. Twenty-four brand new hours are before me. I vow to live fully in each moment and to look at all beings with eyes of compassion.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh

I read that quote in a book recently, and think that they're excellent words to prepare you for the rest of your day.

This is my first Illustration Friday of 2012! Happy New Year!

Also, I got a twitter account; I know a lot of Illustration Friday people are already on there. Find me @SarahRyanDraws

Friday, January 13, 2012

Bethan Juliff Knitwear for Amelia's Mag

Bethan Juliff Detail
This week, I worked on an illustration of a beautiful Bethan Juliff knit gown for Amelia's Magazine. It was a challenge for me because I had one day (Thursday) to complete it. I'm not used to that kind of turn around time, but I figured it would be a good exercise for me.

My original illustration is below. When I resized it for Amelia's mag, I lost a lot of the detail, and cropped the image. I ended up liking the cropped image better than my original!
Bethan Juliff, graphite, watercolor and gouache on watercolor paper, 14 x 11", 2012.
I need to learn to s-i-m-p-l-i-f-y and edit!

See the full Bethan Juliff article here.

PS: I got with the times and signed up for twitter! Follow me @SarahRyanDraws

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Sketchbook Project: Set

Set, pen, watercolor & acrylic ink on watercolor paper, 7 x 10", 2011.
I'm sooooo close to finishing my "Uncharted Waters" sketchbook for the Sketchbook Project!

My penultimate creature is the Egyptian god Set. Set was Osiris' brother. He's the god of chaos, conflict, and violence. In some myths he took the form of the deadliest animal in Africa, the hippopotamus!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Sketchbook Project: Encantado

Encantado, pen, watercolor & acrylic ink on watercolor paper, 7 x 10", 2011.
I'm in full getting-the-Sketchbook-Project-done mode. Two more creatures after this and I'll be mailing it to the Brooklyn Art Library!

This time I drew a mythological creature from South America for my "Uncharted Waters" theme. The pink Boto dolphins in the Amazon River look so strange that the Brazilian people automatically assumed that they were magical beings. The Encantado would take human form to enjoy local parties because they love music and dancing. They'd also fall in love and seduce people who lived along the river.

It doesn't seem like a bad life! You're a human for parties, and swimming around as a dolphin during the work day!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

What I Wore to Start the New Year

What I Wore 3, gouache, watercolor & graphite on watercolor paper, 10 x 14", 2012.
For the "What I Wore Today" flickr group.

What I wore to start 2012:
- crochet back cardigan from my parents
- black tights with little gold triangles from my sister, Anne
- "over the edge" Essie nail polish from my sister, Emily
- twisty bracelet from my sister, Anne
-Gouache...I know that's not clothing, but it's on me!

Happy New Year!!!

I got a great gouache set from my parents for Christmas, and did this quick drawing to try it out. I've never used gouache before, but I think it's going to be a regular medium choice for me now. The colors are awesome!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Sketchbook Project: Capricorn

Capricorn, pen, watercolor & acrylic ink on watercolor paper, 7 x 10", 2011.
Hmmm... this one's kind of rough. I guess I can't like everything in my sketchbook.

This is another page for my "Uncharted Waters" book for the Sketchbook Project. This time the creature I drew was the constellation Capricorn. He's a goat (mine's more like a ram) with a fish's body, and has been depicted in artwork since Babylonian times.
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