Of disappointment, resolutions and drawing things

My first #drawingaday this yearAt the end of last year, I found myself very down. I’m not sure entirely why but as funny as it sounds, Disney’s depressing take on the Star Wars saga was a large part of that. I would read every article, every blog post and every comment I could of fellow SW fans who felt the portrayal of Luke (and Han and Leia for that matter) was just wrong. These comments assured me I wasn’t alone but in the end they left me even more sad.

Sad wasn’t good. I needed to do something. I needed a distraction. So on New Year’s Eve I decided to make a resolution for 2018. I resolved to draw more and Facebook less. That was it. Just draw more. Pretty nebulous.

On January first, I picked out one of my sketchbooks that had been sitting, unloved, in my bedroom and drew. It was a quick pen and ink sketch of our television. I drew while my son was playing Legend of Zelda on our new Nintendo switch. It took me maybe 15 minutes. It wasn’t anything special but it made me feel amazing.

I started this blog years ago, as a place to post drawings I would do using the Brushes app on my original iPhone. I used it as a motivator to make me draw or do something creative. For a time it worked, then I let life get busy.

After I finished my first drawing, I posted it on my Instagram account with the hashtag #drawingaday and my new resolution took form. It has been so fulfilling to draw that I decided I would find the time to draw every day. It’s February now and I’ve actually done it. I’ve done one, quick pen and ink sketch every day so far this year and it’s been wonderful. I feel more creative than I have in a while.

There’s only one rule I’ve given myself on these drawings. Just do them. They don’t have to be perfect. They don’t have to be amazing. They just have to be. Every drawing I’ve done has been a small learning experience. I feel that I’m improving with the practice. When I pick up the little sketchbook I love flipping through it to see what I’ve drawn so far. My kids have honored me by also flipping through it to see what I’ve done. I’m looking forward to what I might draw this year.

Since I’m setting aside that half hour a day to draw, I’ve less time to blog, but I might post a picture of one of my sketches from time to time.

I encourage you to do that thing you’ve been wanting to do. Give yourself permission not to be perfect. Just do.


Her Universe Annual Christmas Pin

20161202_ghibli_01_ahsokapinIt’s available! In spite of the recent Her Universe/Hot Topic merger, Ashley Eckstein has continued the annual tradition of an autographed Star Wars themed holiday pin included in orders of Her Universe items at Hot Topic for a limited time.

I was actually worried about this one when I learned about Ashley’s new path with Her Universe. I have put in an order at Her Universe on Black Friday every year sine she started offering these free Star Wars limited edition holiday pins with an autograph card. This year the pin is so awesome, I knew I had to have it. It’s a Holiday Ahsoka!

I logged in to Hot Topic early this morning, not quite at the stroke of midnight, but before the kids woke up. Sadly, almost all of the Her Universe Star Wars clothing had sold out of my size. So I bought an item that probably won’t fit me but might just fit my daughter, and was able to get the pin!

Looking forward to wearing this one on Christmas with my family.

Thanks, Ashley, for such a wonderful tradition. I wish you and Her Universe many more years of happiness. Looking forward to what you bring us next year.


Drawing a Day: RSM Day 41 – Fall trees

The last trees full of fall leaves.

It’s been a long time since I added another drawing to this space. We went on a family trip in the middle of October, then my son had his birthday, then there was Halloween, and then, and then, and then. Eventually I just didn’t get to drawing anything. That stopped, at least for today, with this drawing.

I was in an afternoon meeting today, and as I listened to the person leading the discussion, I noticed the beautiful trees outside the window. Watching them and the interplay of colors from the sunshine, even through the dingy blinds, I was inspired to take out my iPhone. In doing this drawing, I became quiet in the meeting. This prompted a fellow meeting attendee to take out his own phone and send me a text message urging me to pay attention. 🙂 His urging, sufficiently shamed me into putting away the Brushes app and paying attention. I will not say which fulfilled me more: drawing these trees or listening to team-building discussions.

It’s gorgeous here today, and given that it’s November already, I know there are only a handful of beautiful days left before winter. The interplay of the remaining yellow leaves against the blue blue sky was just beautiful.

I hope that wherever you are today, you are able to enjoy the day.

Drawing a Day: RSM Day 40 – Fairy flight

Fairy Flight

Another drawing to keep my drawing promise to myself (and forty drawings already? wow!): Fairy Flight. The inspiration for this one was a suggestion from a twitter friend of mine. She suggested I do some drawings where I could leave them outlined and let my kids color them in. While I colored this one in, it started as a line drawing of a fairy that I thought my daughter might want to color. Then I ended up playing with the colors myself. I did this during one of the “mommy come and draw with me” times with my kids recently, so it’s as light and free as they are. With the Brushes app on my iPhone, I plan on going in with another layer and tracing the outline of the fairy so I can make this into a coloring book style drawing for my daughter to color in as she sees fit.

Enjoy and I hope the fairies are flying for you today too.

Drawing a Day: RSM Day 39 – A cup of Tea


I was putting together an event invite in facebook for a school sponsored mother-daughter tea party, and decided that I didn’t want to use some clip art for the graphic. So I used this as my opportunity to do a small sketch for today. I wanted to capture the simple nature of a tea party and some pink since this is, after all, for my daughter who adores pink. I drew it really quickly, as more of a gesture sketch than a delicate drawing from life. Typically, I draw what I see, and prefer to draw from a still life of life drawing subject. This one is totally from my imagination.

Without further adieu, here is a quick drawing of a teacup, done on my iPhone 4 using the Brushes app and taking advantage of the use of layers. I don’t normally use layers. I was more or less “classically training” in drawing, and having never used photoshop, or any of the other computer graphics programs, I just paint or draw, one layer on top of the next using physical pencil or paint on paper or canvas. Doing something in virtual layers, so you can more easily do things like lift the black outline drawing on top of the coloring (as I did here) isn’t they way I think. At least, it’s not the way I think when drawing or painting. I thought I’d give it a try here, and I am happy with the way it looks.

Enjoy and have a nice warm cup of tea.

Drawing a Day: RSM Day 38 – Suzy in Green

Suzy in Green

Not to be outdone, here is a drawing of my one and only; my baby girl; my sidekick kitty cat, Suzy. Here she sits, in full regal pose, and I put in green around her to match her beautiful eyes. She’s a tuxedo kitty, and every inch of her is a commanding presence. Enjoy today’s drawing on my iPhone with the Brushes app.


Drawing a Day: RSM Day 37 – the tale of our outside cat

Kee Kee on the porch

For today’s drawing (sketch) I present the outside stray kitty cat who has made her home under and on our front porch since this past summer. Dubbed (by me) Kee Kee (say Kitty Kitty fast, and you’ll see where it came from), this little kitty is very afraid but very very sweet. A visit to my local vet yielded the following: She’s old (about 9 ish), fixed and declawed on the front paws (something I suspected, but at that time, she wouldn’t let me lift up her paw and check). She definitely had an owner at one time.

For the first month that KeeKee joined us, I did nothing to encourage her to say. I did not feed her. I did not approach her. I simply noted her presence in my flowerbeds, and when I was outside weeding or tending to the garden, I made a big deal of acting as though I had no idea she was there. I did this both for her (because I could tell she was very timid) and for my husband who wanted anything but for me to adopt an outside kitty.

A month went by and I could no longer let her live there and not feed her. She’d cleared out our mole infestation naturally, so that my husband didn’t have to go buy something at The Home Depot to do it chemically. She’d even left a couple of dead moles on my front door mat, as though she were feeding us, her adopted family. I felt I owed it to her to leave some kitty chow out for her.

Slowly I left bowls of water and dry cat food under the bushes in my front garden around the porch. Slowly, I would refill them, in her line of site but made no movement to come near her. Slowly I let her get used to the site of me and understand that she had nothing to fear from me. I would provide her food. I would do what I could to make her comfortable.

Eventually, she came up to me. She let me pet her. She purred. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of winning over the trust of an animal. I do not take it lightly. No matter where she came from, Kee Kee has a place around my home as long as she needs it.

I have set up a shelter on my porch. First it was just a cat carrier. I set it out, and let her decide whether she wanted to use it. When the rains of the summer got too much for her, she did. I started to see her snuggled up inside it at night. Now that it’s getting chilly, a friend of mine has given me an igloo shelter for which I bought an outdoor heated cat pad. I set that all up last night, much to KeeKee’s appreciation. When I checked on her last night, she was snuggled up nice and cozy in the igloo.

I do not know how the winter will go. I do not know if Kee Kee had ever faced a winter outside. She showed up at our house pretty skinny. I’ve done what I can to help fatten her up. I already have an indoor cat, and neither my husband nor my kitty are willing to entertain adding another. Besides, if KeeKee’s been living on her own for a while (which the neighbors think she has) then she’s probably an out of doors kitty and might not do well with the rules and regulations of living indoors (litter box, etc).

So, there you have it. That is my tale to go with this sketch. This is Kee Kee, my new outdoor kitty. The sweetest little old lady you’d ever want to meet.


Drawing a Day: RSM Day 36

Gesture drawing - my daughter smiles

These days I am starting to think I need to retitle these drawings from “Drawing a Day” to “Drawing a Week” since that’s more of the pace I can keep. Either way, I have drawn more this year because of my own personal motivation here, than I have drawn in the last 8 1/2 years (since my first child came along).

Without further adieu, for my drawing this week, I present another drawing from my iPhone, and done in just a quick time. This is my daughter, smiling and posing. I used a photo as a reference, and only gave myself about 10 minutes (if that) to do this drawing. I tried to keep it light and gesture drawing style.

Drawing a Day: RSM Day 35

Stuffed Animals Discussing things

Another quick drawing for another day. This one was of two of my daughter’s stuffed animals. She had left them downstairs in the family room while she went off to bed. I left them sitting as they were, because the arrangement makes it look like they are having some sort of secret conversation. My daughter was delighted the next morning that I’d drawn some of her toys, and has asked that I draw more of her things as she sleeps. Let’s see what I can come up with. Drawn on my iPhone 4 with the Brushes app.

Enjoy and sleep tight. RSM.

Drawing a Day: RSM Day 34

Snuggly Suzy cat

Another drawing for my drawing a day personal promise. This is another one of my Suzy cat snuggled on my lap. It seems that the only time I have to draw occurs at the end of the day when I finally sit down. Logically, this is also the time when you will most find Suzy sitting on my lap. Thus, the easy subject matter. Drawing done on my iPhone 4 with the Brushes app.

Enjoy RSM.