Friday, June 29, 2012


"I knew that as long as I kept walking towards the mountain I'd be alright. And when I truly was not sure what to do, I could stop and think about whether it was taking me towards or away from the mountain."

A few weeks ago I found this incredible commencement speech that Neil Gaiman gave to this year's graduating class from University of the Arts. I must have listened to it three times in a row and many times after that. I wanted to share it here because a) Neil Gaiman is awesome and, b) his words had a profound impact on the way I now think about the career I am trying to shape (especially after reflecting on them after Meg Hunt's Illustration Bootcamp that I attended a couple of weeks ago—there's a recap coming soon, I swear!) and I think it is definitely worth a listen for anyone working in a creative field.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


The artists who participated in this project received some thank you notes yesterday! Just wanted to share mine. The kids also sent us a picture of a summer adventure they'd like to go on. My buddy Ross wants to ride a shark!

I love that sting ray!

Friday, June 8, 2012


I've got quite the collection of illustrated children's books (when I signed up for a Barnes & Noble Kids Club card a little while ago, the woman at the desk seemed a little puzzled when I said I didn't actually have any kids) and I thought it might be fun to share my new additions every now and then. The Beetle Book by Steve Jenkins is my latest find. I have been enamoured with bug-forms ever since I made that beetle illustration for Oh Comely last year. Jenkins' beetle illustrations are stupendous. Both artful and scientific, they appear to be collaged of many different kinds of paper. My illustrations are usually built out of a bunch of digitally collaged segments of whatever I am depicting so I love looking at all of the pieces used to compose these beetles. Here are a few interior shots for you to oggle and the back cover (which is possibly my favourite part).

Monday, June 4, 2012


A group of the artists from work recently teamed up with a local second grade class to create a fun art collaboration. This project was the brainchild of the awesome Mitch Mortimer. As an artist creating products for kids, he thought it would be fun to ask some kids to interpret one of two prompts:

If you could have any pet what would it be?
What scares you?

Mitch then took the drawings created by the kids and invited some of the artists in our department to expand upon them. "If the Giant Killer Gorilla's hand is warped with 7 fingers....keep it that way but add detail and form to it. Laser shooting farting robot from the future with green skin and one eye? Perfect-o! Enjoy that one and amp it up. Don't try to fix what they did...but make it 'real' in your own way."

Here is the outcome from my swap. I loved the eyeball hands as well as the kid running away. It was such a fun project and really helped remind me about one of the reasons why I love illustration so much. We have the power to bring anything to life. Anything you could possibly imagine. Like eyeball-handed pet monsters that eat your broccoli.

We wrote notes back about what scares us or a pet we'd like to have. I said I'd want a pet that flies so we could go adventuring.

Friday, June 1, 2012


My favourite theme yet on Ten Paces and Draw was posted this morning. This week the theme was....... Arrested Development! I had a blast finishing up Nat's sketch. Too many good juice moments to choose from. It was a bit of a sparse turn-out this week, but you can check out the other illustrations right here.