For The Love Of Markers

Azile Marker art

Markers have certainly evolved since I first used Crayolas as a child. I fondly remember my first set of markers. I also remember the devastation I felt when they dried out.  As time passed my art evolved.  Occasionally I would use my Micron pens, but markers were mainly used to decorate handmade cards or packages. I seldom created art with them.

The more I delved into digital art, the more I longed to return to organic art.  Illustrating books, creating book covers as well as the advertisements and book trailers thereof left little time to do so. I could make a few smaller paintings, but drying time and such delayed any true sense of gratification. My graphite sketches and Micron ink drawings seemingly lacked. Then…. I discovered ….. Chameleon Pens.  I believe I first saw the video on Facebook.  No doubt my bestie had tagged me in the post.  It seems when a new art product arrives I am always tagged about it.  If only I had the luxury and wealth to buy these items. I remember sharing the post with my husband.  The idea of blending markers and one marker providing seemingly limitless colors was simply awesome to us.

Then came Valentine’s Day. My darling husband surprised me with the 22 box set. The rest of the available colors came shortly thereafter as an Easter surprise.

Chameleon Marker Art

I never thought I would enjoy markers again.  But I love these! They make creating art as fun as I remembered it. I have many other top brands of markers as well, but I always seem to go back to my Chameleon pens. They flow beautifully.

Flight Of Colors Marker Art

It has not become my favorite late evening activity. I doodle with my Chameleon pens.  It is a welcomed break from the digital monotony that has become my world amidst illustrating children’s books!

Alaska Marker Art

I still paint, wood burn, sculpt, sketch, and draw using ink, of course.  However, the ease and instant gratification from using the Chameleon pens are wonderful.  I have enough time after work and preparing my family dinner to actually complete a piece of art.  Nothing compares to waking up the next day and seeing my doodle sitting there. Even if it isn’t perfect, I feel better knowing it is complete and I feel accomplished.

To see more of my art please visit my website at www.alysathena.com

The Fairies of June

The Fairy and the Sprite

 

The Sprite and the Fairy 

Disney Fan Art

Drawn for one of my best friend’s birthday.

I think fairies may be my absolute favorite subject to draw.  I have always admired art that contained them. I do believe I have more art that I have done containing fairies than anything else.

If you like my art and would like to commission me or purchase any of my original  work please visit my website at http://www.alysathena.com/

 

*fan art is never for sale

 

When Work Calls…

Have you ever heard of illustrator’s block? Well, evidently it does exist. And I had it.  Now, normally, this would not be a big issue, as I tend to always work ahead of pace and schedule. However, this time is was causing problems. I am already behind on the book I have been illustrating.  When I say behind, I mean MONTHS behind. Between eye surgery and my boss throwing whammies at me non stop, I managed to fall drastically behind on everything.

As I absolutely adore this author, I was gutted.  I was doing everything I could to seek inspiration.  Even the Magic Kingdom seemed to fall short of vanquishing the dreaded block. I decided, in an effort to save time, to start formatting the book.  You may or may not know, I do it all.  I illustrate, edit, format and create all social marketing for the books I do with Fox Tots….that is on top of running Fox Tots as the chief illustrator and C.O.O.

This was it! Formatting was just what I had needed to do.  I was stuck at illustration number 23.  A typical book will contain at least 32. As I began adding the text to my drawings, it was as if a light bulb went off.  Suddenly I felt inspired.  More so than when I even began first illustrating. Now I am excited again and cannot wait to complete this project!

formatting books
A look into the formatting of My Trip To The Library. Written by Barbara Poor

Organic Art Month

I am amidst illustrating another children’s book.  Within as much, I am drawing virtually NON stop digitally. It seems I have a substantial need to balance my creativity.  When ever I am doing a lot of digital art I tend to offset it by then doing an equal amount of organic art. Or, at least as much as my ever failing hands will allow. Here are a few of the organic pieces I have created this month. I tend to fair better as an illustrator when I let the artist within come out.

 

 

Quick fairy sketch after a long day of highly detailed digital illustrations.
Chalk Pastels, Easter Bunny Baby
Oil Pastels Deer
Late night quick graphite doodle of a Horse
Acrylic on canvas, Peacock

 

 

Acrylic on wood, Turtle
Acrylic on Mini Canvas

 

Acrylic on gesso

Artists ~ Visiting The Cedar Key Arts Festival

A couple of weeks ago, my family and I ventured over to Cedar Key. I had been longing to return to this magical little shanty town that I remembered visiting back in the 90’s. It was the closest thing to the Florida Keys that I had ever seen.  Visiting the keys virtually every weekend was my favorite part of growing up, so when I realized there was an area close reminiscent of the Keys, I had to check it out! I instantly fell in love!

We have passes to all state parks. I remembered visiting a park or two the last time I had been to Cedar Key. Prior to going, I ensured the parks were still there.  Much to my surprise, one had a beautiful face lift of sorts! So it would be a bit of a new adventure for me.

My daughter and I were in heaven.  It was absolutely beautiful. Kira got to see her first shell mound. You should have seen the expression on her face! It seemed a higher climb than I remembered.  Ahhhh, the benefits of growing old!

I was able to feed my photography cravings as we visited the shell mounds and the Cedar Key State Park & Museum. The admission of only $2 per person is well worth it. Although we have passes, we opted to also pay as donation.

In route (it is a long drive) we saw signs for the upcoming Arts festival.  I squealed with excitement! I absolutely LOVE art festivals! Plus, Kira had never been to one.

This past weekend was the festival. It surely did not disappoint with the endless food, wonderful entertainment, and amazing art and photography booths.

Stage? Who needs a stage when you have a boat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I wish I was able to take more pictures. However, it seems some of the artists do not like free advertising.  As an artist, I absolutely do not understand this.  For the photographers, I can see why they have signs requesting no photographs be taken of their work, but for an artist? Is there a trade secret???? It is free advertising; do they thing someone will steal their idea? I am baffled by this concept, quite honestly.  Then there are those who are on the opposite side, which I tend to favor;

Make note, they welcome photographs and even list all of their social sites! Now this is a SMART artist.

As an artist who also is a digital artist, I am no stranger to having my work stolen. But for artists who have painted or sculpted, I cannot see why they wouldn’t want their work shared publicly by as many people as possible. To each their own.  I respected the signs that said this once my husband was gracious enough to point it out. Subsequently I had to delete at least 20 images.

We had an amazing time. The weather was absolutely beautiful.  Warm with a beautiful coastal breeze.  The location is second to none.  Cedar Key has changed quite a bit since I first went in the 90’s. The quaint charm has sadly been replaced in spots by a concrete mess.  However a visitor need not search far to see historical homes and shanty landmarks.

 

Enchanted Twilight (Series) 2

I have completed a few more to add to the Enchanted Twilight series.

I imagine I will be able to focus more on my art as I have come to realize my employers focus more on their needs than work. In turn, I am following suit. I have essentially put my own needs career wise on hold and was focusing on other’s needs. I was enlightened today by some very rude remarks.

As I am losing my sight and the use of my hands, I shall no focus on what I need and what my family needs and not put someone else’s needs before ours.

Twilight’s Blossom
Tropical Twilight
Twilight Love
Twilight Love
Twilight Wisher

Life As An Illustrator

Happy March!!!!!!!!!!

Well, normally I would be posting all the art I have been working on…However since I have been back to work post surgery, I have been quite busy.

Once again there were name changes….this resulting in me having to create yet even more new logos. Oh what fun……

I think I am burned out on the constant rebranding.  How many name changes does it take?

Anywho, so doing new logos and mascots has kept me busy and from the actual important work. With this new branding/logo I had to also edit former ads and animations.  I absolutely love having to edit 16+ layers of an animation and not get paid a penny more to do so.  Do you detect my sarcasm?  The rebranding has taken time away from the real work as I previously stated.  What is this real work?

Why illustrating of course!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am BEYOND excited to be working once again with the incredibly talented Barbara Poor!!! After our previous work together, The Girl With The Curly Red Hair, I am extremely excited to work with her once again!

I am up to 16 preliminary sketches for our next book! Although all the authors I have been blessed to work with are wonderful, I must say Barbara is the easiest to please! I have had zero revisions or redo’s for her to date! Any illustrator will tell you that is beyond rare! Barbara’s talent is unmatched, as is her kindness. You can learn more about Barbara by visiting her website here; http://www.joyofchildrensbooks.com/ To see more of my illustration work please visit: http://www.alysathena.com/

I am also busy creating relevant ads for all previously published books via FoxTots, which I am now fully in charge of.  Because I need more to do yet not be paid more….again denote the sarcasm.

 

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I love making animations, unless of course I am remaking 16+ layers because rebranding (and not being paid more for this) is an ever occurring issue!

I also have had the pleasure of FINALLY receiving a digital proof of a book I submitted the art for last summer. I am extremely excited to see this project done. It seems there has been one delay after the other on it.  I never realized when I signed this contract that only I was given a submission deadline! Lesson learned and henceforth I will not be given a deadline unless all parties have one.  I have done unsurmountable hours of illustration work, which at the moment  is all completely unpaid.  The digital proof thankfully only had  minor errors which I assume shall be fixed forthwith, as again it has been quite a while in the making.