Sketchy Business

Happy 2018! Like… three months later, hehe.

How’s everyone’s creative endeavors going? If you’ve been following along my Twitter or Instagram, you may have noticed I’ve been pushing my Etsy a bit more. But with more sketch cards rather than the crafts. That’s one goal I wanted to accomplish this year – to improve on something I’m already working on.

Easy. Porg all the way. #PorgNation

In this case – it’s my Etsy shop. I love crafts, but drawing is my first creative love. Though, that doesn’t mean I won’t stop with the crafts…more on this in a bit.

Of course, when selling original (as in, they’re not prints) work, there’s always an attachment. I scan them, of course, before they’re sent to their new homes. In many ways I like doing the sketch card focus because I can pump them out a bit faster than, say, a hand-made plushie. And the subject matter isn’t just something that many love, but what I also love – otherwise, what’s the fun in drawing them?

Oh Miki, you’re so dead.

Getting the word out is a challenge I’ve accepted – so part of the fun is trying to catch people’s eyes. If I can at least get more visitors to my Etsy page…then I’ve accomplished something.

Hux with the buzzkill.

Well…sketch cards aside…I’ve begun the process of dabbling in some jewelry making…again. But this time, dabbling in a bit of resin. I’ll keep everyone updated!

Thank you for following along with me. And, if you’re ever looking to start up a sketch card collection or add something new to what you have, stop by my Etsy store!

Or, if you’d like to just contribute a tiny bit because my drawings make you smile, I’m always grateful for a coffee (or an herbal tea!)

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com

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2017: Looking Back and a Look Ahead

2017 was a wild ride, wasn’t it? I mean…creatively. Along with the inevitable creative slumps here and there, I can comfortably say I’ve learned and done some new things.

This year I’ve done/learned/picked up:

A few more tables!

Oh, a bit of this and a bit of that…

Ok. Just TWO tables, but that’s two more than I imagine I’d do. Both tables were smaller crowds or smaller-trafficked due to them being either in malls where artist alley tables aren’t on many shoppers’ radar or the first of a type of con. Either way, there was always much to learn in terms of the type of shoppers and what’s popular at certain venues. Took me a while to learn that Pokemon is very much popular as it was years ago.

Started a web comic!

Don’t mess with the Ess

No more what-ifs or other hesitations – I just went and did it. Didn’t care if it’s terrible – I just needed to get off my butt and start drawing…digitally. And to give the Clip Studio Paint and Surface Pro some mileage! I felt I wasn’t using both tools to their full potential as well as putting the ideas in my head to pen and paper. I’m a true believer of learning while doing and I definitely feel like I’m learning with each comic. It’s definitely a good exercise and gives me a sense of a schedule. I also feel like I’m developing my OC more even if all of her weekly stories are limited to four panels. Either way – I hope you’ll come by to read them!

Drew Inktober as a comic story

For the prompt “underwater”

I couldn’t say no to participating in Inktober. Not only did I follow the official prompts, but I centered them around a comic that was almost an origin story for my take on Snow White. This idea I borrowed from a friend of mine who did this last year with the prompts. I found this to be a pretty cool exercise in coming up with a story where each comic centered on a single word and to look at the words from different angles. I might want to do this next year.

Started using the sewing machine!

Yeah, sew?

Nya!

I don’t know why I was so afraid of using a sewing machine. In my eyes it was a thing of wonder and terror – all those dials, numbers, and…how the heck do I thread this thing?! But I started small…and soon I was confident to sew better plush! Actually, I’m still starting small. Better machine this time, but same plush.

Met new artists and made new friends in Drawing Meats

The Meet of MEATs

Each year I’ve met and befriended some awesome artists in our bi-monthly MEATup. This year was no exception. Here’s to a new year of more drawing and, hopefully, new friends!

Became a workshop coach

I took the initiative to meet the folks who opened the new local art studio in my town. After a few chats, I became a workshop coach for sketch cards and greeting cards! Admittedly, it’s a little slow, but even inspiring a small group is a lot of fun.

Creative Goals for 2018

Improve my Etsy page

This is my goal EVERY year. I’m owning up to the slump in sales – I haven’t been pushing it as much as I should. As much as I love making fan art and fan crafts, I really want to move on to making originals. Which leads me into….

Making a name for myself

So I’ve started building this with my webcomic. Fan art is a great way to draw people in with something familiar and I hope I can draw their eyes to my original content.

Improve plush-making

Since I’m a bit more confident with the sewing machine, I’d love to start making better plush. So I’ve JUST mentioned that I want to do more original content…but I may have to experiment with making bigger versions of the fan plush I’ve made. Maybe a Kylo Ren plush you’d want to hug….or choke.

Improve sewing, in general

Toward the end of the year I actually tried to make a few zipper pouches. I still have much to learn despite pouches being one of the more simpler projects. From there, I’d love to print fabric with my own art and make zipper pouches from them.

Improve drawing, in general

There’s ALWAYS much to learn in any creative endeavor. I could definitely kick myself in the pants more to draw hands better.

Take commissions and not be afraid to sell my art

I’ve done very few commissions but trades are hardly ever a problem. So why am I so hesitant to take commissions? Folks will often tell me my art is pretty neat, but even that doesn’t give me enough confidence to draw something by request. That’s something I need to step up on.

Continue everything, improve everything

Everything I’ve done this year and beyond, I definitely want to keep going and get better.

Let’s keep drawing, painting, crafting, writing, and learning into the new year. Thanks to everyone who have been and continue to support me – I definitely want to give back with my best.

While we wait for 2017 to end, come talk to me on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook! And, if you enjoy what I do, come by my Ko-fi page!

Happy New Year, everyone!

Inktober 2017 – Reflection

We did it! We made it to the end of Inktober with a drawing every day! And, even if you didn’t and are still catching up to this day – that’s def okay too. Heck, I might even dive into NaNoWriMo mid November. But anyway…

This Inktober, I added another layer of challenges alongside restricting myself to inks and the prompts. As mentioned in my last post, I stole the idea of creating a story  about my take on Snow “Essie” White where each comic was based off of the prompts.

It definitely challenged me to broaden what is usually drawn with prompts as well as draw poses and settings I hardly – if ever- drawn. Like backgrounds, horse carriages, inns, and sandwich-stealing bears.

It was all fine and dandy until I got to “Fat”. One minute, Essie was chasing a cub who stole her sandwich. The next minute….

Fat geese and mysterious trees. They go together, right?

And to segue into “Graceful”, well, I had to keep the goose.

Graceful dancing fat geese – faded away into myth and legend.

What with my story taking place in a land of fantasy, it was very easy, and very fun to add in a comic with a Skyrim setting:

“Let’s sate that appetite, hm?”

Oh gah! Foreshortening?! I did what I could.

A daily comic was a good exercise for me in both drawing and storytelling. Then I entertained the idea of making daily comics…erm… Welp, until I’m super comfy drawing digitally, I’ll keep my comic weekly.

However, I did start to feel more comfortable just drawing comics. Admittedly, I struggle making my weekly installations! I want to say that the prompts definitely helped.

Another good and kind of bad/sad thing is that several of my pens have been given good use to the point of fraying and running dry! Yay? Guess who has to hit up the art shops again. Damn.

I hope you followed along on my Twitter and Instagram! There were tons of great Inktober drawings that make me eternally jealous. But I am very happy with what I accomplished. I’m quite proud of my silly comic that I may even post them on Webtoons or Tapastic so it’s easier to read.

Until then, take a look at my Instagram to check out all of my Inktober comics!

How did you do this year?

Inktober – the Almost Halfway Progress

How’s everyone’s Inktober going?

Thanks for nothin’!

I think I’m doing pretty good…not perfect, but so far, I’ve been posting something daily.  More than once, sometimes!

As mentioned in my previous post, my plan was to, not only use the official Inktober prompt list, but to draw a little comic each day – each one connecting into a story for my character based on Snow White.

Show her what you think of that apple!

So far, I haven’t run into any snags coming up with a comic to fit in with each prompt…but the later half…not going to lie, I’m scratching my head over it. But that’s all part of the fun and challenge, right?

Oh geeze…

But OF COURSE, Star Wars just HAD to come out with a new trailer and everything else that’s making my imagination go 10,000 MPH. There was NO WAY I’m not going to squeeze in some inked Star Wars fan art.

Round 1…FIGHT!

Let’s get to it! Just…what, 18 more days?

Hope you’ll follow Essie’s Inktober story in my Instagram and Twitter!

 

Inktober – Are you IN?

Heck yeah I’M IN!

I’m so excited! I’m so….SCARED!

Don’t know about you, but I’m HYPED for Inktober! No other reason other than loving the challenge of limitations, interpreting prompts, and forcing myself to use up what tools I bought out of compulsion.

I’m always partial to toned paper, but this time I may switch back and forth between this shmancy leather-bound fancy-paper sketchbook and this toned sketchpad I got at good ol’ Daiso.

As for drawing tools – I’m def one of those who will sketch something in pencil, then line it. Inks will be laid down using any of my usuals here, as well as dabbling with one of these inky brush pens, a fudegokochi pen, and – possibly – one of these nibbed pens I got as a gift.

Makes me regret getting rid of all the gel pens I had ages ago…

And, of course, a white gel pen to add in those little touches! Maybe a touch of the sparkly ones because sparkles.

With this year’s official Inktober prompts, I might go about it telling a story with my own character – similar, if not stealing the idea a friend did last year.

We all know this will all end with a giant pool of melted cheese.

Or I just might go willy nilly with bits of fan art mixed in. Or both, who knows!

Will you be taking part in Inktober?

I’ll be posting and tagging my Inktober doodles all over Twitter and Instagram – come follow and chat with me!

 

Reflecting on the Crunchy

Welp! I can add another notch to my Artist Alley experience with Crunchyroll Expo. In short – my sales were fair, but I had a lot of fun as I did with the year I was doing Fanime. I met some fabulous artists – even some I’ve been following ’round the interwebs – so I had some slight star-struck moments.

Why yes, we ARE artists!

Though my friend and were a bit  more prepared setup-wise, we did still feel like amateurs. Because – WOW, if you’ve been to any Artist Alley, you know there are some impressive displays! But this time, we had a good stock on variety and I thought our table looked pretty good.

The fun part.

Oh, a bit of this and a bit of that…

The crowd itself seemed a bit more mellow than I expected, but perhaps that can be attributed to this being the first con from Crunchyroll. That did give my tablemate/pal and I some time to peruse the rest of the convention.

Not shown: Me doing a Skyrim merchant impression

The Exhibitor’s hall was cool, but I was absolutely more impressed with Artist Alley! It was a very humbling, but also learning experience – I’d chat with a few of the fellow artists, get some tips on printing, supplies, setup, and just generally praise their work because holy cow…there are just some AMAZING pieces out there!

This being my third tabling experience – I’m still ever a rookie learning the ropes. Do I want to do this again? Absolutely.

But until my next table, I’ll continue to improve my work and hope to keep in touch with the fellow artists I’ve met!

No, THIS is the fun part. Taking EVERYTHING down. Sigh…

If you weren’t able to come say hi at Crunchyroll Expo, I’m always on Twitter and Instagram!

Getting Crunchy at Crunchyroll Expo

It’s that time again! My THIRD time tabling at an Artist Alley. This time at Crunchyroll Expo August 25-27.

For the past few months I’ve been working on new pieces to feature on prints, buttons, and…wha…keychains!

If you’ve seen my last post, I’m toting a bunch of these guys along and hope they’ll find new homes.

G’day.

I hope you’ll come by if you’re attending. I’ll be sharing the table with my pal & fellow artist – and she’s got some great stuff to check out too!

Of course, I’ll be tweeting and Instagramming my happenings during the con.

But if you’re not able to attend and you’d like to support what I do, come visit my Etsy and Ko-fi pages – any contribution will definitely help wrangle in supplies and will put a smile on my face knowing my stuff makes you smile!