Tuesday, December 6, 2011

large flock guardian

More colour/background practice for what I've decided is going to be Colours And Backgrounds Month (am going to start picking something different to focus on every month so I can stay organized and on top of things)! I've started first doing underpaintings so I can figure out the general colour scheme of everything instead of getting overwhelmed when the time comes to fill it all in - seems a bit of a 'duhr' solution and it's a bit silly that I've only been trying it lately, but I'm glad I finally came around to it even if it took me a while. I've also become more brave about outlining background elements, I went in and refined the clouds after someone pointed out they looked a tad blurry.

The dog pictured is my Maremma Sheepdog character, Sirocco. I imagine he's scaring off a stray dog that got too close for his comfort, or something.

I should do some quick colour studies of photos and the view out my window and the like just to practice!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

this is the life

First time I've completed a piece with these characters in it since... well, the thesis. My credits would have looked something like this if I hadn't been a sleepless apathetic wreck towards the end of it (or if I'd planned ahead a bit more effectively), little postcard-like images of Labu and the monkeys palling around the jungle. I've been actively trying to play more with colour palettes (since I've always been a bit tame with that) and push myself for more interesting images, and I'm proud of this one! Was good to revisit these guys again too (with an updated skillset!), even if I doubt I'll do much more with them.

More illustrations to come for sure, I still need more practice with them backgrounds and colours...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Bunny That Fell To Earth

Tribute art based on Naughty Rabbits, an iPhone game that I designed the characters for!

If you have an iPhone or iPad, check this one out. It's based around the myth of the rabbit in the moon from traditional Chinese folklore - apparently that rabbit's extended family is misbehaving and attempting to free-fall down to earth, and you have to help them get back home! I can't post any concept art I did for the game just yet, but once I get the green light I will probably do so here!

I've been trying to get back into drawing full backgrounds, I realized I haven't really finished a picture with a background since my thesis, and that's a little sad! I have a work in progress that I'm thinking about livestreaming sometime tomorrow... I'll post on my otherwise rather dusty Twitter account when the time comes.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

some days I am motivated to create nothing but tributes to my favourite things in the world. this was one of those days:

(someday I will have a more photogenic workspace. and/or a better camera.)

got the idea to make these smash balls a while back, the technique from a good friend that once gave me some gem-magnets as a birthday gift! I made this batch as an experiment that turned out surprisingly well, but I'm not really sure what I'm going to do with them all now. magnets, bracelets, hair accessories, paperweights, could sculpt some characters to hold them, I definitely want to make a necklace for myself from one - agh the possibilities!

making fan-stuff is good for pushing oneself out of a rut. :D

Thursday, November 10, 2011


my favourite beasts and characters updates will return, promise, when I'm feeling less overwhelmed.

until then, I'm glad that an art trade with my good friend Natasha Fishman has jerked me out of my art slump. I've been scribbling around producing nothing much I feel is worth showing, and it's possible I just needed to do some relatively meticulous Photoshop inking for a change of pace and concentrate on details which I don't do often. Natasha's character S'daza the spectrum demon is certainly good for giving me details to concentrate on. she's more than a little catlike in nature and that was what I drew on for the pose etc.:

the inking was meticulous enough, but I got lazy with the shading as I am wont to do these days and messed around with layer styles instead of being proper about it. e_e;

on a lighter note, I recently received my Sketchbook Project sketchbook in the mail! the theme I chose is 'prehistoric', and I look forward to doodling plenty of awesome primitive fish, mammals, and dinosaurs in the weeks to come. :) I've opted for my sketchbook to be digitized, makes sense since the people I hold dear span at least two continents, but I might post any pages I'm particularly proud of here.

Monday, September 19, 2011


I've been busy with life things and really got behind on my animal/character of the week drawings! for now, have more sketchy impressions of my boyfriend's chihuahua, Gonzales. I coloured my favourites. maybe I'll make a little animated cycle for him sometime..

Friday, August 26, 2011


Fiddler crab, suggested by my good friend Tris. I've always loved these guys since I was a kid, definitely one of the most charming crab species out there. I really liked the colours on this one so I used that to choose a colour scheme. This one's a super quick Photoshop painting because I am having to prepare for a hurricane.

I'd love to draw more arthropods in the future, they've always intimidated me with their complex exoskeletons and I'd like to find a nice balance between realistic and cartoony for them. We'll see how that goes...

Monday, August 22, 2011

gourmet race

super quickie because I'm busy this week, but I'm happy with how it turned out. I don't normally get this bold with bright colours!

I was just going to be cheap this week and draw Kirby (for those who don't know - my favourite video game character of all time, and that is a big deal because I don't usually just have one favourite anything), but he's shown up in my blog/sketches so many times already it seemed pointless to use him for this project. I then figured I'd just draw a character from the Kirby series but I couldn't decide on whom. I like King Dedede and Meta Knight, of course, but wanted to pick someone that's less prominent in the franchise if I could. I like a lot of the enemy designs, but couldn't think of one that really stood out to me until I got to this guy!

I'm not really sure why I like Chef Kawasaki so much, honestly. He's an orange blob that can cook, great stuff. Oh, and when you eat him he gives you the power to destroy all enemies on screen by sucking them into a giant pot and cooking them up (sound familiar, Brawl fans?). That has to count for something.

Friday, August 19, 2011

have you ever seen a cephalopod fly?

Second entry in my Friday's Beast project, the aptly-named Dumbo Octopus, one of the most adorable molluscs in the world even by normal-people-that-don't-think-molluscs-are-cute standards:

Those "ear" fins aren't just for decoration of course - they help the octopus move around in the water. I'm assuming they can change colour like most cephalopods, since the images I found of them varied hugely in colour. I really liked the colouring this guy and this guy had, so I went with that for inspiration. Check out this video of one and you can really see why they picked the name. Adorable!

Not much is known about these creatures, like most deep-sea animals, but I hope that will change in the future. Deep-sea creatures are awesomely weird and I'll definitely be drawing more in the weeks to come!

Monday, August 15, 2011

you don't scare me

I was hoping to finish this game before I drew this but since that probably won't be for a while:

Here's little miss Sakamoto from Cave Story, who's already one of my favourites! I love how scrappy she comes across so I had to draw her all messed up but still ready for action. :D

If you don't know what Cave Story is, it's an indie 8-bit styled free-to-play platformer made completely by one man, Japanese developer and artist Pixel.. The designs are appealing, the story is really engaging, and it's just a lot of fun! I also think it's super cool that Pixel has kept it free to play online even though it's now out for download on the Wii, and soon to come to the 3DS (but I recommend playing it on the PC first and foremost, since Nintendo did change some things in their port and I'm always for experiencing something as the artist intended). If I've piqued your interest at all - and I hope I have - do check out the game here! I definitely recommend it.

I was trying to incorporate some background references to places in the game, but it wasn't working out so I went with my original simpler idea. Not the most interesting image in the world but I'm trying to make more complete images instead of just having a character on a blank background. Starting to get more into it, I think!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

silky anteater

Fridays are now Draw An Unfamiliar Animal day, and for my first outing I've picked the Silky Anteater. Love these guys:

They hail from South America and are the world's smallest species of anteater - one can fit in your hand (so naturally I had to draw one with a Giant Anteater which is about the size of a large-ish dog, and also an Unfamiliar Animal so forgive its quick-n-dirty quality). They're nocturnal and arboreal (live in trees, you can tell by those feet and the prehensile tail and how tiny they are). They also supposedly camouflage themselves by living in silk-cotton trees and looking like the seedpods, because as their name suggests they're pretty fuzzy.

I love their little weird claw-hands! Here is a photo of one being cute (or not, depending on what you find cute. I find certain insects and baby Aliens cute over labrador puppies, so I'm willing to accept that my tastes might be a little weird). You can really see why one of their other names is 'two-toed anteater'.

I think my favourite drawings are the two on the bottom right corner, I think those capture the look of the animal best while still being a little stylized. I'm getting better at 'getting' an animal from references, though - the key thing for me is not to get too bogged down in details and try to get the shapes and proportions right first, as well as how the anatomy works - which is key for drawing different poses. Video reference would be the best thing for that, but that's hard to find for these guys since they're rarely seen as it is. :[

Anyway, I would very much like to finish a full image and make some better drawings of silky anteaters soon, but for now enjoy this quick sketchdump :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

ace spiritualist

What's up, internet! This week I've started a new personal project to get me to draw and post more, and I've designated Monday and Friday my special themed days for this (yes I know it's Tuesday, bear with me here. the hardest part of anything is getting started so better late than never x)).

Basically, every Monday I'll draw and put up a picture of one of my favourite fictional characters (well, ones I didn't create that is :B). Kicking off Monday's Character is Maya Fey from the Phoenix Wright games:

I like her because she's such a dork and likes food (both things that we have in common) and I like her design. She kind of annoyed me when I first 'met' her in the first Ace Attorney, but I've definitely warmed up to her since and it's weird whenever I have to solve a case without her. Her theme music is also lovely (♥), particularly when performed by an orchestra:

I do enjoy her and Phoenix's growing relationship (which I see as more sibling-type, btw, don't really buy the supposed romance... but then again I haven't played Apollo Justice yet, maybe I'll feel differently then. Also, please be a decent human being and don't spoil me). I love a lot of the characters from this series, so probably more will be upcoming on future Mondays.

Attempts at monochrome, hooray! This one's relatively 'normal' for me, but I'm hoping to get more experimental with these pictures in terms of colour, lighting, composition etc. which are things I'd like to play with more.

You guys can also feel free to suggest books/tv series/movies/games/comics etc. for me to draw from, and if it's something I haven't checked out yet I'd be happy to and see if I like anyone in it enough to draw them. What's in store for Fridays? Stay tuned... :B

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

25 years

man, I feel old. x_x

anyway! I did a t-shirt design a while back for Cat Clark's training school, Dog Radical, of her whippet Pogo! I love European whippets, so this was just a delight for me. she sent me some update photos now that the shirts are printed, and the designs look great on them!

I've got myself an account on Steam now! mainly joined because I am looking forward to some crazy Team Fortress/L4D action with my buddies, but I've found plenty of other PC games (cute, quirky, third-person adventure/platformer is more my style) that I'm keen to try. click on Fighter Kirby to visit my profile and add me if you wish :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

illustrator is annoying

but I used it to make another picture.

I was just playing around with pen tool and pencil tool today. at this point I feel I could have made a much better image with Flash, but oh well. probably just need to watch more tutorials...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

vector vector vector

been playing around with Illustrator CS3 over the past few days, watching online tutorials and trying to teach myself the ins and outs. I'm not fond of working in vectors but thanks to Flash I'm a lot more comfortable with them than before and it's not so counter-intuitive for me. it's my first time really trying AI out and this is the first picture I've done with it, of my character Penny who always serves as my new technique guinea pig somehow:

the jury is still out on whether Illustrator and I are going to be friends, but figuring out how to toggle the brush settings has helped its case. :B

here's a vector logo I did for a dog-walking service, made with a more familiar foe-turned-bosom-friend, Flash:

Thursday, April 14, 2011

trainer wishes to battle

pokémon: still very much a great escape from reality.

wanted to play around with colours - and Pokémon - after reading through PK's Colouring Tutorial. I'm cheered by the results!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

small but mighty thing

this is what happens when you watch The Thing and Beverly Hills Chihuahua back to back (yeah, some weird taste in movies, no?):

I may actually finish and colour this at some point, just wanted to get the image down. :B and maybe do more drawings, I find the morphing scenes in The Thing inspiring and would like to try going crazier with it.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

marchly sketchdump

I'd been feeling a bit unmotivated as far as drawing lately, so I figured I'd mix it up a bit by playing around with media - that usually helps. I picked a random handful of my copic markers and just started playing around.

long-dragon. I like some things about this but overall I'm not sure what I think. I'll need to try this again..

I like animals with long noses, if you didn't know already. from top to bottom: giant anteater, pangolin, tamandua, aardvark, armadillo. no references used, so if anything is off that's why.

supposed to be White Snake and Green Snake from the Chinese story. I'd like to do more illustrations based on that someday.

also watched Kestrel's Eye, a documentary that follows a pair of kestrels in raising a nestful of youngsters (not really recommended if you have a short attention span or need dialogue/narration in your movies, unless you're a nature weirdo like me and love observing animals for hours). since I'd never really studied raptors or falcon-type birds before, I took the opportunity to make some drawings.

small diversion: my boyfriend's dog, who had decided to come take a nap nearby. lifedrawing with markers is definitely something new for me.

I was inspired to draw the gryphons in these pages by the 'gryfalcons' in Mercedes Lackey/Larry Dixon's The Black Gryphon, which predictably enough are my favourite characters in that book. I love the sleekness and compactness of falcon-type birds.

one more stream-of-consciousness sketchpage, including my character Penny and Blossom of the Powerpuff Girls in a kind of weird style which I may mess around more with.

and to close, a pair of caricatured corgis:

Sunday, February 6, 2011

happy place

quickie idea that's been in my head for a while.

I need to draw stuff other than us, but eh.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


I don't think I'm afraid of great heights so much as I am of the possibility of falling from them.

not really a vent piece but definitely based on things I've felt. features my character Switch.


I don't think I'm afraid of great heights so much as I am of falling from them.

not really a vent piece but definitely based on things I've felt. features my character Switch.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

red tape

feeling a little glum because of recent developments in my situation, so I doodled.

be thankful if you've never had to deal with immigration laws ever.
don't be fooled - he's mainly annoyed because my butt is less than a foot from him and he can't reach it. ♥

Friday, January 7, 2011

three tigers

"The White Tiger is connected to the symbol of jinx in China history. Some Chinese might consider that 2010 White Tiger is a bad year....

...Tiger contains Mainly Wood, Fire and little Earth. Wood and Fire together will make Fire stronger. Metal is afraid of Fire and Metal is also against Wood. That means Metal and Tiger together will fight each other, which implies 2010 won't come quietly and peacefully. We can image that 2010 is a Tiger wearing armor. This Tiger doesn't like armor on the top its body and keeps jumping around. For safety, we should keep our distance from it. That's why many Chinese don't like White Tiger."

-Chinese Fortune Calendar

A year ago, whilst celebrating Lunar New Year in Chinatown with my buddy Ivey, I slipped and fell down the steps of the subway, giving myself a massive bruise on my hip, and breaking a bracelet that a friend had made me in the process. A week after that, my wallet (containing my immigrant work permit) and mobile phone were pickpocketed. This was the start to my third Year of the Tiger.

I had meant to draw this picture back then, but the incidents listed above put that thought out of my mind for quite some time, and after that things just seemed to keep cropping up. A recent trip to the Singapore Zoo (it's beautiful; I took lots of pictures :D) made me remember it, and I figured might as well do it before the year officially ends. I try to draw a Lunar New Year picture every year, and I had meant this year to be far from an exception.

The Tiger is the year of my own birth, which means as of this year I've completed two twelve-year cycles (a complete cycle is 60 years, which means I've gone through the years of each animal in each of the five elements). Tiger Year children, generally speaking, are not traditionally favoured in Chinese culture (in the year of my birth, 1986, the birth rate fell dramatically in predominantly-Chinese Singapore), and girls particularly not so - apparently because it is supposed to make them overly aggressive, which is not a value that Chinese women are traditionally supposed to aspire to. The Chinese equivalent of the term 'bitch', at least where I come from, is 'mu lao hu' - 'tigress'.

It's been an interesting year, to say the least, definitely a year of extremes and firsts. A lot has been going on, some things nice and others not-so-nice, but one thing it has certainly not been is forgettable - as tigers never are. I've been very fortunate this year, but with all the good fortune came a great deal of stress and wear, and I've been trying to hold it all together and keep everything in check. Exhausting, but worth the effort in the end to my mind. Similarly, with all the not so nice things that happened, there was always a silver lining somewhere -- the day of my fall in the subway, there were good samaritans kind enough to help me up and give me tissues for my bleeding wrist; and the day my valuables got stolen, my friends pulled through for me unbelievably while I was being a hysterical mess. Also, I had already sent in the application for my work visa, so that was unaffected by my permit being missing (applying for my social security number on the other hand was another story, but thankfully that's all in the past now and didn't really affect anything either).

So here's my image for the Year of the White (Gold/Metal) Tiger -- the White Tiger himself, sitting in foreground, the Yellow Earth Tiger (1998) in the middle and the Red Fire Tiger (1986) at back. I'm amazed at the ease with which this picture appeared within the space of a day or so, given that it took me long enough to get around to making the effort.

Anyway, actual Lunar New Year picture coming soonish. :B And a fond farewell to the Year of the White Tiger -- it's been rocky, but grrrr-eat.

Oh oh also! Going to the zoo gave me the idea of possibly making some prints to raise money (and awareness) for conservation efforts. I hope I can find a good way to do this - since I've never done anything like that before and am not sure how to set it up. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know!