I’ve gotten this question a fair bit when giving people art “How do you do that?”

Aside from years and years and years of practice… generally I have a process for making certain kinds of art. Often when I do fan art, I use a process that will be fairly quick. Every so often, I will try something more elaborate that uses a different process, but much of the time – in the interest of speed – I’m doing this.

Part 1!

I decided I wanted to make some fan art of Mike Drucker. He’s a local comedian that I’ve seen twice now. He opened once for Dan Telfer, and once for Kumail Nanjiani. My early research efforts were kind of lazy, so I looked harder this time, and found some good reference photos. Then I put music on, because it is a requirement to help me focus (it is also not uncommon to hone my playlist down as I work to only a couple of or one looping song(s), somehow it snags a particular thing in my brain and keeps me there). Tonight, I’d picked some cheesy metal. Poor Mike ended up getting drawn mostly to “Little Suzi” by Tesla.


I started sketching, but I was having a hard time, so I ended up pulling it apart and trying pieces that I can put together later. This is not common, usually I just throw it out and start over.

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PSAs on my “About” page! I’ve been trying to noodle with it periodically, to add info and FAQ stuff and such.

Second order of business: Arts!

Molly Lewis and Stephen Fry

There could be unintended consequences to Molly’s request of Stephen Fry.


I’ll be attending GeekGirl Con! If you plan to go, probably you should nab tickets soon, prices go up as the event draws near.

I’ll be attending Steamcon III, and will have art up in the show!


Back from the Marian Call concert! It was an awesome, and extended show (I assume this is because it was being recorded). 3rd time I have had the good fortune to catch her live, and WHEEEEEE!

I was able to give copies of fan art to her AND The Doubleclicks after the show. I think I like this thing of bringing gifts for awesome performers!

I feel like there should be more to say, but I am so sleepy! Another time, perhaps.


Mt. St. Helens

Mt. St. Helens! Generally I’m always on the wrong side of the plane, so it has been hard to see it.


We touched down right about sunset.


View from The Stratosphere. I do love viewing places from way up high!

If you were curious as to how I fared during the trip… well, I spent the last day in a wheelchair. I paced myself, got rides when I could, applied first aid and maintenance and medicated appropriately, yet still I got to a point where spasms brought me down (which means my right side balled up and my right leg stopped working) – thankfully I’d planned enough that I wasn’t far from a seat, I can only hop so far. It’s a little sad when old ladies in walkers can move faster and more reliably than you can. This is oddly better than the last trip a few years ago, when I ended up just flopping down and crying because I didn’t know what was happening or what to do about it. I’m trying not to let the disability stop me from having a life, but it sure can be a challenge.


Best part of the trip? Phantom of the Opera!

Phantom of the Opera

(Some years ago, this is what I drew after seeing the movie.)

We were in the center of the 3rd row for Phantom of the Opera. SPOILERS AHOY! If you haven’t ever seen it, or the movie, and don’t want to be spoiled, skip to the next paragraph! When you go sit down, the first thing you notice is that everything it covered in tarps, and looks like an out-of-commission opera house. At the end of the Prologue, it “flashes back” starting with 4(?) chandeliers that crash down to the audience, and then sort of dance overhead, pulling up to the center (for the Phantom to fall out of later!!), and all the tarps get yanked off, revealing a rich and gorgeous theater, and all the little box seats going up the sides… hooked up with Madame Tussauds, perhaps? The costumes, the layering of the sets and details, jeeze Louise! The alternate Christine, Kristen Hertzenberg, was frickin’ spectacular, the only time she seemed at all off was when she was completely engrossed in her acting, making real tears and such – I can’t sing with a lump in my throat, either (and even without a lump I’m still all frog)! It was pretty powerful, though, to see that passion spilling out. The Phantom, Anthony Crivello… sweet bee’s knees!! He has a sort of vocal arrangement that makes him distinct, and what it did was give him a depth of character, aging him a bit, giving him greater range and nuance… just… BOY OH BOY. And let me tell you how Andrew Ragone could kick the behind of any sparkly, spooky, romantic lead (If Sean Maher were musically inclined, there could be similarity there.). The scene with the boat in the sewers? Because of our seats, it was like we were submerged in the fog and the boat was coming at us. That’s one of the things about the staging and the theater, you really felt like you were inside the show somehow. So amazing. Not many dry eyes at the ending. I’ve always had a bit of trouble with the excessive back and forth at this point, but this Phantom really makes you feel it, even if at the very last that dude was probably slightly overacting from exhaustion – I was out of breath just trying to keep an eye on him!

Days later, I’m still saying “Let’s go see Phantom again!” I finally have an answer to the question “What would you do if you won the lotto?” The typical answer is bills, medical stuff, safe, decent house… but after that? 2 weeks of this show front and center. Especially for this Phantom and this Christine. I am so sad that there is no soundtrack with these two (and really, everyone was amazing!), and all I can find is a sort of iffy morning show demo song from the show. This Phantom is so, so enchanting, his ability to go from the most delicate, trepidatious whispering to absolutely brutal, booming energy. I feel like I’m totally spoiled by the Creative Common License that the w00tstock crowd has, allowing me to re-watch shows I went to so I can remember every little detail, and keep up with shows I cannot get to. I wish Broadway and Vegas, etc. shows would let you buy the evening’s recording the next day or something- really, how likely is it to be able to go back and see it many times right away so you won’t miss seeing your favorite cast?


Anyway, in conclusion: OMG GO SEE PHANTOM IN VEGAS. It will give you the will to live!! :)


A Profile

And a little something less heavy, I shall leave you with. I have a very adorkable friend, and this is more or less her profile.


On the subject of “real” vacations (…and me baring a little of my pruned up, crotchety soul, please be patient!)…

There is a certain stigma to being unemployed and disabled, sometimes people say without thinking “It must be nice to have so much free time!” Certainly I have a lot of down time, but that isn’t really the same thing at all. Actual vacations I have had in recent memory: In 2004 Dove’s parents took us to Disney World. In 2006, Dove’s parents took us to Vegas. Both of these trips were specifically vacations – getting away, spending free time, and having fun, but also came along with the obligations of a family trip – great fun, but vacationing with your parents, you know? I ended up in Vegas again in 2007 for work, but spending all day working and then going out at night isn’t really the exact same thing as a vacation. When I was a kid we went to Maine for a few days, as a pre-teen I went on a class trip to Boston, as a teen I went with family to New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, and as an adult I’ve visited loved ones in Virginia, Florida, California, and Oregon… But you know, structured class trips and family vacations. Fun, yes, (I know, some people haven’t even had these chances, etc.*) but not really the kind of freedom one might look for – and many of those trips are now at 10 – 20 years behind me.

Going to shows locally is a great thing. While they do not match up to a good vacation, they are such welcome and refreshing respites from the daily struggles. I’m sitting here watching John Roderick on YouTube for the kajillionth time, and lamenting not knowing of him or The Long Winters sooner. I missed some clearly amazing shows (Time Machine Task #2, Task #1 is reserved for going back and making me not so much of an idiot). There’s also something else I realize as I sit here moved to tears, love, laughter, and a ton of other emotions – I love going to live shows because it is a rare time to feel connected. Not just to the performers, but to the music, the comedy, the storytelling, the whatever it is. Connecting in a real and tangible way to ideas, inspiration, other people, and all of the things inside that come alive when a piece of art really grabs you.

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Kind of a short post today! Sorry, I just have a lot to do right now. July is busy, busy, busy!

I contributed 3 illustrations to this book of steampunk imagery (for other purchasing sources, check here.)!

Speaking of books, I’m trying to figure out what to do about digital versions of “Pour Morir“, it looks terrible on Kindle (duh), barely passable on a Sony reader, and I have not year heard a peep about iPad (I’m not looking to re-create it for Kindle, it is meant for print, or something capable of decent resolution). For now I’ve dropped the Lulu e-book price to a buck fifty! One dollar and fifty cents. Ideally, I want to get it down to .99 – which technically I CAN do with Lulu, but I would make zero profit. I’m not sure what an easy way would be for digital distribution, PayPal won’t allow “adult content”, and while there isn’t anything pornographic in this comic, it has adult themes, so I can’t trust PayPal not to ban me or be nonsensical about it. Suggestions?

The Doubleclicks

The Doubleclicks will be opening for Marian Call in Seattle in 2 weeks! I am excite! My favorites of theirs are “This Fantasy World (Dungeons and Dragons)” and “Ironically”.