Highland Park Literary Festival

Join me at the Highland Park Literary Festival February 21-22. I'll be teaching workshops on creating graphic novels. All my sections are full, but the opening event is free and open to the public Thursday evening. Dr. Neddi Okorafor is the keynote speaker. 
Click here for more info.

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Feline February-Week 1

All right, folks-Feline February has begun!
I am accepting photos of people’s cats on my Facebook page. Every day, I number the photos I’ve received then choose one using a random number generator. Then I paint that cat.
Day 1-Chartreuse
Ellie and Peanut

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Peanut was born with polydactylism, which is an anomaly which causes cats (and other animals or people) to be born with more than the usual number of fingers or toes. Extra toe beans to love! I made the pattern a stylized cat paw with 6 radiating toe pads and a dot below for the dew claw. 

This year, the creator of Month of Color, Este MacLeod, grouped our colors in threes. The first three colors are chartreuse, Heather, and Kingfisher. Or in simpler terms, bright yellow green, dusty purple, and vivid blue green. We can paint one color within a painting a day or mix them all together. I’m going to mix the first three together in the first three paintings. This is actually a digital painting done in Procreate on my iPad.

Day 2- Heather 

Today’s special cat is Amy. Her owner is a Sewing Wizard, so I like to imagine Amy embroidering bluebirds.

Day 3-Kingfisher (deep bluish green)    This is a friend’s talkative barn kitty.

Day 3-Kingfisher (deep bluish green)

This is a friend’s talkative barn kitty.

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Day 4-Marshmallow (dusty pink)
Meet Blueberry, of House Kinyak.

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Day 5-Sap Green
Loving means squeezing.

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My friend‘s cat died last night, so I chose to do a portrait of him instead of drawing a name today. 
Mimi (it’s a boy) lived to be 18 and died peacefully in his sleep. 
Day 6-Hot Pink

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Month of Colour challenge

I'm going to participate in the Instagram challenge "Colourful February", created by artist Este Macleod. With a "u" because she's British and fancy like that. 
Does anyone want to join me? Please do!
Here's watcha do:
For every day in February, there is a color. Make ANYTHING from that color. A sketch, a painting, knit something, make something out of play-doh, make food that color, take a photo, whatever...just create something in that color. 
Then...share it on Instagram and FB with the hashtags:
#colourfulfebruary #monthofcolour

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I won the 2019 Hunt County Public Art award!

I'm excited to announce that I'm the 2019 recipient of the Hunt County Public Art award. The group's mission is to beautify and energize Hunt County with public art. The HCPA will provide funding for me to create a mural in Greenville, Texas, later this spring. I will be documenting my progress on social media, so stay tuned for more details!

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Leftover paint into blob monsters

I like to take whatever paint I have left on my palette after I'm done with a project and smush it all over one of my sketchbook pages. Later, I come back and let my imagination do what it wants with the blobs of color. Today, little furry anxiety creatures are swimming across the page.

Playing flute for deer

I like to sing or play music for the deer in the meadow sometimes. These two have been resting together since dawn. Not the best video, but I didn’t want to get closer and scare them. Also…not enough hands.

It's Caturday!

It's Caturday!
This one's for you, Dusti and Jeff. Your lil' Chesterfield needed to be painted.
As a personal art challenge, I completed this tiny painting with only two colors (red & yellow) plus black and white. It's 2 1/2 " x 2 1/2".

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Fairy Tale Tuesday-East of the Sun, West of the Moon

Fairy Tale Tuesday:
Today I'm sharing art from the Norwegian fairy tale "East of the Sun and West of the Moon". My focus today is on images of the princess with the Polar Bear King. If you'd like to read more about this story, click here to read a summary by Genevieve Valentine.

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Anton Lomaev's cover art for an early addition of Edith Pattou's "La Figlia del Nor".

by Kay Nielsen

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by Kay Nielsen

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by Edmund Dulac

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Anton Lomaev's art for an early addition of Edith Pattou's "La Figlia del Nor". (I think-if I'm wrong please tell me! I do my best to properly credit all artists.)

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by costume designer Anna Driftmier

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doll by Pixiwillow

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by Margaret Walty

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by Jackie Morris

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from production of "East of the Sun, West of the Moon" by Triangle Arts Entertainment through the North Carolina Arts Council

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by Kaysha Siemens

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by Ashley Stewart

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by Andrew Lang

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This is a CAKE (!!!) by Karen Portaleo

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by Jackie Morris

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by Lauren Smith

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by Stephen T. Johnson

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from the Fetch Puppet Theater production of "East of the Sun" during Prague Fringe Fest.

Laura Irrgang featured on Everyday Creatives

I was the "featured member" of Everyday Creatives earlier this week. That's an online group made up of artists around the world committed to producing art regularly. 
Here are my bio and photos from the feature:
(And thanks to the group’s founder, Dylan Mierzwinski for sharing my story.)
Hi there! I'm Laura. I’m an artist. A dreamer.
A lover of fairy tales, the woods, flea markets, and the smell of books. 
I spend my days making things in my studio in the Texas woods. I split my time between fine art, illustration, and cartooning.

Like most of you, I've always loved art. I went to art school, was a high school art and theater teacher, also taught adults at the University of Texas informal courses, and led the summer art program at a children's museum. In additional to teaching, I managed a contemporary gallery in Austin, Texas. While my two daughters were young, I stayed home with them, and saved up to build a studio at our home in the middle of nowhere. When they were little, I had an online business making Halloween and holiday toys, decorations, and art. I also did a ton of pet and family portraits. Now that my little loves are in in school, I'm back to art full time. Violet and Piper are my heart-I'm also their Girl Scout leader. I'm married to a Adam, who is an engineer who arm wrestles professionally. It makes me happiest to pet my cats, slurp coffee and splash paint, take walks in the woods and sing to the wildlife (seriously!) and play harp.

I've taken all the MATS courses from Lilla Rogers, been through Folio Focus, and tons of Skillshare classes. Just over the holidays, I purchased an iPad Pro and have started learning Procreate. 
I created the comic strip Glitterville, do fine art work for galleries, and am working toward shifting more of my work into illustration. I start illustrating a craft book this spring, and have recently won funding to create a large-scale public mural.

Art is my life-I think about it constantly. It brings me such joy to meet other creative souls in groups like this. Thanks for letting me introduce myself, and I look forward to getting to know more about YOU, too!

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Fairy Tale Tuesday - The Tale of Tsar Saltan

Fairy Tale Tuesday:
I have a book illustrated by Ivan Bilbin, but I have no idea what it's about because it's in Russian. The images have beautiful linework with such subtle color. It feels like a fairy tale or a folktale. I asked a friend who reads Cyrillic , and she said this is The Tale of Tsar Saltan by Alexander Pushkin.

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Here is an animated version of the tale, accompanied by selections from the opera, “The Tale of Tsar Saltan”. There are English subtitles.

Friday Fun Day Winner...Birdhouse!

And the winner is...Stacy Diamond!

She suggested “birdhouse”. To make it fair, I counted the number of suggestions and put them in a random number generator program.

Would you guys like to do this again?

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Sammy's Snow Day

Sammy couldn’t wait for a snow day! 
I like Sammy Davis Jr.’s music, his dancing, and anything mid century.
I’m in an illustration group called Illostories, and I was given this sentence as a prompt. We’re working on creating art for children’s books projects. Granted, swinging Sammy and kids probably don’t mix. But I could make a Rat Pack book for children work, right? My First Martini! Make your own cigar from Play-Doh! Games For Dizzy Dames!
If you’re interested in Children’s book illustration, you’re welcome to join the group with me and start drawing!
#illostories #illostorieswintertale

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Friday Fun Day

Fun Friday---
YOU guys suggest something for me to illustrate.
I'll pick one of your ideas at random and post it here. 
And....go!
(I get most of my suggestions from Facebook, but you can make them on any of my social media pages.)

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All those jars? An explanation.

Yesterday someone asked me about the tons of glass jars I have in my studio. I have oodles of bits and bobs arranged in rainbow order. If you're curious about how I got all of them, I wrote a blog post about it a while back. Here’s a link if you want to read more.

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January by William Carlos Williams

Forgot to post this one last week.

Wonderful Words Wednesday: “January”, by William Carlos Williams.
This is my first attempt at a time lapse video on Procreate. It records every drawing stroke I make. Can you see it in fast motion on your end?

I wanted to share a detail of the illustration. I added a Figgjo candle holder. Figgjo is a Norwegian porcelain manufacturer. I like their vintage stuff. January always reminds me of Scandinavian things...all the sparse, cold, inside-ness of it all.

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Fairytale Tuesday: The Snow Goose

It’s Fairytale Tuesday!
I used to do a folk/fairytale feature every week on my blog, and I want to start it up again. I am going to keep the same spirit, but have a broader reach including modern narratives, songs, and art.
Today I wanted to share “The Snow Goose”, a wintery piece written by Ben Heneghan and Ian Lawson. It’s a vocal interpretation of the tale of Lashka the goose. She flies north to free the sun, sacrificing herself to the realm of winter. In the tale, children draw Lashka’s image on frosty windows to hopefully make it snow. 
I love this version performed by Siobhan Owen. It’s actually quite a sad song, but isn’t it beautiful?