sketches 2008

January 17, 2008

Panda in the garden

At last! A new image on the blog. Sorry for the long wait folks. I’d planned on doing a clever drawing that summed up all the hopes and possibilities for the new year. It was going to be very clever and witty and would have bedazzled all of you. Then I drew a Panda standing in a garden and surveying its surroundings. Uh, here it is.

February 5, 2008


This is how I imagined today would look. We’ve had mountains of snow and then today it was suddenly warm and we had tonnes of rain. Luckily it doesn’t exactly look like this today. Whew! We’re supposed to get another big winter storm tonight and tomorrow bringing more snow and ice. Weird. This is a drawing of me by the way. I look exactly like this!

March 10, 2008

falling panda

I think this one is pretty self explanatory. It’s a falling panda bear.

April 3, 2008

a fox

A fox walking in his forest. I like the photo of the tree in the background combined with the drawing of the branch and the digitally painted leaves.

April 22, 2008

pencil profile

This is an ultra rare (for me anyway) pencil sketch of one of my characters. I don’t know why I don’t draw with pencil more often, this one turned out just right. I’ve struggled for years with drawing my characters in profile. My drawing “style” favours frontal views of characters, or sometimes even three quarter views, but never profiles. Now I’m finding that I have to draw then in profile sometimes. This is one of them.

May 9, 2008

Fox in the City

I just returned from a Literacy Conference in Saskatoon (on the Canadian prairies). I spoke with about 2000 kids over two days and did a few digital drawing demonstrations. Over the next few weeks I think I might upload some of them to this blog. This first one is one of my favourites. To save time I did my drawings on the computer instead of drawing on paper and scanning them. This allowed for very quick pictures that could be moved straight from Painter to Photoshop very easily. I hope you enjoy them. More about the conference soon.

June 4, 2008

Girl Profile

This is another image from my lectures at the Literacy for Life Conference in Saskatoon. Since drawing my figures in profile is my new party trick I did a few of them at the conference during my demonstrations. This one turned out particularly well. The background is a photo of some graffiti I saw in Vancouver a few years ago. If you saw Princess Mononoke (the Miyazaki film) you might remember those little tree spirits with the strangely rotating heads. Someone spray painted one of them on this wall. It was a pretty cool piece of graffiti and I’ve been dying to use it ever since — not that you can see much of it in this picture I suppose. Oh well. The green around the bottom was painted in Photoshop.

June 16, 2008


Heather and I just got married.

July 10, 2008

Rabbit Goes to Town

This is another drawing from the Saskatoon Literacy for Life Conference that I attended in early May. I really like how this one turned out. I salvaged a very old drawing from a trip to New York almost ten years ago for the cityscape in the background.

August 20, 2008

Raccoon in the Rain

Another drawing with an almost-dry marker. I’ve tinkered with this one on and off for months and never got it quite right. But suddenly it came right today! It was worth getting up this morning (it always is!). The background was painted using Painter X’s nice oil brushes. The raccoon was coloured in Photoshop. I applied a gradient map over most of the image to get that nice monotone.

September 19, 2008

Girl With Dark Sky

I drew this a couple of weeks ago. I tried painting a nice, bright orange and yellow background but the whole image just looked kind of sloppy and garish. So I applied a simple gradient map to the background and voila! It worked! Suddenly the girl “popped” against the dark background and there was real tension in the image. Funny how that can happen sometimes.

November 6, 2008


This is one of a handful of pieces that I created for an illustration pitch. I didn’t get the job in the end, which is too bad, really, since it would have been very cool. Oh well, you win some you lose some. Since I’m not sure what the etiquette is in these kinds of situations I’ll keep quiet about what the job was. I own the illustrations though so I guess I can share them. And, since a child recently asked why there weren’t any trucks in any of my books, here’s a drawing of one! Never say never. I hope he’s looking at my website right now. Pencil and Corel Painter were used. Then cleaned up with Photoshop.

November 17, 2008

Sea Monster

From my sketchbook, and for a change I didn’t do anything to it before uploading. I was planning to colour it, but I think it looks kinda nice just the way it is. I love sea monsters.

December 11, 2008

On the Streetcar

I drew this while riding the streetcar. Ballpoint pen and Bienfang watercolor brush.

December 19, 2008


Self explanatory. A doodle of Rudolph. Cute! I think he might be related to the sea monster I uploaded the other day — kinda similar.

Merry Christmas, oh faithful blog readers!