cumuluscastle: (sparkly)
 These new oil pastels are so amazing. They're so soft and smooth! They're so expensive . . .

Sunset Beach
cumuluscastle: (cicada)
Tonight my sister and her husband are rolling their characters. After that I can start planning their campaign a little bit. I really want not to go overboard planning things, so I will probably just come up with ideas for their relationship dice rolls at the beginning of the first session and a few story hooks to get them headed out into the world after we get through the pre-planned adventure that comes with the core rulebook.

If anyone is interested in The 13th Age as a tabletop RPG, then check out this campaign GMed by Grimith: 13th Age: Grimith Takes on Europe. He's an amazing storyteller. I chose this system, because I had heard someone else using it as a tool to create a more story-focused game. Combat is fun, but I am not as interested in a game that is just based on characters bashing their way through hoards of monsters. 13th Age promises to be a bit less rule intensive as well.

I certainly won't be recording our sessions, but I might very well describe them here - it will probably be more notes for myself as I try GMing for the very first time and describe my successes and failures.

Also, here's a drawing I made of my youngest sister's ranger character, Adina

Adina by cirruscastle on DeviantArt
cumuluscastle: (Default)
So lately I've fallen in love with plain old pencil art. Some part of me feels like it's inferior to other sorts of art though. Help talk me out of it!

It's just I have so much more control with a pencil than I do with paint. I am also trying to get back into oil painting (with so far little success) because I know it's less chancy than my usual watercolour. It's just so much more expensive in supplies.

Well, I have purchased some nicer drawing paper and some matte fixative anyway.

Here are some of my new drawings behind the cut.Read more... )
cumuluscastle: (castle in the air)
My artwork was featured in this blog on Studiovox.

It has some other nice artwork and has led to me following some new artists on DeviantART. So if you like fairy tale art you should give it a look-see.
cumuluscastle: (Default)
Have a mentioned a charming little game called Dragonsphere? I think so. It is free to download from GOG.

Here is a little (poorly photographed) sketch of a character from the game who I am a little obsessed with. Her name is Llanie de Summers.

I think she's a great character - very plucky and sassy. I also love her very 90s style fantasy garb.

Llanie de Summers by cirruscastle on DeviantArt
cumuluscastle: (Default)
Have you seen this guy's hand illuminated Silmarillion. It's just . . . wow . . . so impressive.
cumuluscastle: (Default)
Monet Refuses the Operation

Doctor, you say there are no haloes
around the streetlights in Paris
and what I see is an aberration
caused by old age, an affliction.
I tell you it has taken me all my life
to arrive at the vision of gas lamps as angels,
to soften and blur and finally banish
the edges you regret I don’t see,
to learn that the line I called the horizon
does not exist and sky and water,
so long apart, are the same state of being.
Fifty-four years before I could see
Rouen cathedral is built
of parallel shafts of sun,
and now you want to restore
my youthful errors: fixed
notions of top and bottom,
the illusion of three-dimensional space,
wisteria separate
from the bridge it covers.
What can I say to convince you
the Houses of Parliament dissolve
night after night to become
the fluid dream of the Thames?
I will not return to a universe
of objects that don’t know each other,
as if islands were not the lost children
of one great continent. The world
is flux, and light becomes what it touches,
becomes water, lilies on water,
above and below water,
becomes lilac and mauve and yellow
and white and cerulean lamps,
small fists passing sunlight
so quickly to one another
that it would take long, streaming hair
inside my brush to catch it.
To paint the speed of light!
Our weighted shapes, these verticals,
burn to mix with air
and change our bones, skin, clothes
to gases. Doctor,
if only you could see
how heaven pulls earth into its arms
and how infinitely the heart expands
to claim this world, blue vapor without end.
cumuluscastle: (cicada)
So, all of these images I have posted so far pretty much exist outside of the actual words of the poem I am illustrating.I think it's necessary to really tell a story. I don't know if this is a good or a bad thing.

I have to start thinking of my next project. I like the way this project is going - it gives me a lot to work on. I am just about to get into the more difficult parts though. These parts involve close-ups of people's heads, which can be tricky, in my opinion, but also horses. Lots of horses. I am not very good with horses. We'll see how agonizing this becomes.

From The Fairy Child


Jan. 4th, 2014 10:22 pm
cumuluscastle: (bad sheep)
My goals this year are to make more art.

I currently have an illustration of The Tempest and a hand-drawn copy of Thorin's map from The Hobbit (to go on my wall) on the go.

I want to do more little pieces of art this year to keep my hand in. I am thinking that trying to do character studies of different characters from books and things that I like would be my best bet. I love to draw people. I need a lot of practice at it still and it isn't too terribly involved for me to work on over a few days.

A small watercolour of mine takes upwards of 12 hours to make, so it can be hard to stick with it and a drain on my energy if I am in the midst of work.

I hesitate to set a number of drawings of anything like that because in the past it's been a complete failure and made me feel ashamed, so I guess I will just make it a point to check in monthly or bi-monthly here and maybe on Tumblr with sketches.

Character Sketches
If you had any character sketch requests I would be happy to consider them if you leave them in the comments(not making any promises, clearly, because I am worried about my ability to follow through on this at all). All I'd need is some information on the character's physical appearance and maybe a little background in case I want to add some context to the image. You could include a reference pic if you like.
cumuluscastle: (bogstrok)
I've been working on this for too long, but the holidays ate my life a little.

Moonlight Path by *marybethcragg on deviantART

This just originated from musings I've had when looking at the 'paths' light makes on water. As you can see I had a bit of fun with blooms. I've never really got the hang of them, so this was a good time for me. The stars are okay, but I think I have to do an undercoat of something so they don't turn out quite so white maybe.

Then my little sister came over and we did lots of sketching and also this still life.

Still Life with Squash by *marybethcragg on deviantART

I made her do a lot of life drawing from deviantART stock, which was quite a bit of fun.
cumuluscastle: (flying sheep)
I loved this movie as a kid and now I also love this book. I was just re-reading it a little while back when I came to this part where Shmendrick and the unicorn are just travelling together at sunset (just loaned my book, so I don't have the exact quote for now). Anyway, that's why I wanted to paint this.

Last Unicorn by *marybethcragg on deviantART
cumuluscastle: (santa grinch)
I am nostalgic about Advent Calendars because my grandpa used to get us one every year when we were kids. This Pinterest Advent Calendar is not the same, but it seems fun. It pairs an artwork with a chocolate to count down the days to Christmas. The only disadvantage is that it's just a picture of a chocolate. Then again, it might not be so much of a disadvantage after all.
cumuluscastle: (castle in the air)
I liked the idea of this contest on DeviantART to draw this again - in other words, choose an older work of yours and reproduce it in order to see the growth you have made during that time. So I chose my Tam Lin painting.

This first one is from 2008

Tam Lin by *marybethcragg on deviantART

This is from 2012

Tam Lin Transformed by *marybethcragg on deviantART

I find the changes interesting.
cumuluscastle: (Default)

Shadow City by *marybethcragg on deviantART

I was inspired a bit by Ombria in Shadow when I painted this. The idea is that there are two cities, one above ground, one below ground. But the actual painting is more like a city where it always day and a city where it is always night.
cumuluscastle: (Default)
Two painting based on The Stolen Child, by Yeats.

My concept here is what if faeries stole human 'children' away when they were young and sometimes also when they were very old. I imagine to a fairy, any human counts as a child. Perhaps this is even the same person in both images.

The Stolen Child by *marybethcragg on deviantART

Stolen Child II by *marybethcragg on deviantART

Dear Theo

Aug. 7th, 2012 06:47 pm
cumuluscastle: (cicada)
I've been reading, Dear Theo, the edited letters of Vincent Van Gogh to his brother Theo. It's edited by Irving Stone.

Such a sad thing to read, since I know how the story ends.

Here are some quotes that have caught my eye:

"If you ask me how it is that you never hear me say, 'I wish I were like this or like that,' it is because I think that those who cry loudest, 'I wish I were like this or like that' try least of all to reform themselves. Those who talk so much about it generally do not do it" (268).

". . . in reality I shall never think of my own work as finished" (292).
cumuluscastle: (bogstrok)

The Dancing Tree by *marybethcragg on deviantART

This one didn't turn out just how I wanted it. It's too bright and pastel coloured. Anyway, it worked out better than I thought it would all things considered. I do like that enormous tree though.
cumuluscastle: (bad sheep)

Will-O'-The-Wisps by *marybethcragg on deviantART

I wanted to do something simple. I might have been influenced by Brave just a little. Those wisps were so cute! But I like the combination of pretty but dangerous. Also, it reminds me of LotR "Don't follow the lights!"
cumuluscastle: (Default)
Here's another green man. This one is feeding a cedar waxwing.

This one has been waiting to be finished for a long time now. Now I'm in that awkward stage of needing to decide what to start next. I have some things lined up: a will o' the wisp, a rusalka, a little person exploring some tree roots . . . I don't know.

Also, you'll notice another path in the distance. I have a sort of compulsion to include paths in landscapes that I've recently discovered. In my image folder I have over 20 pictures of them . . .

Hawthorn Man by *marybethcragg on deviantART

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