Water You Waiting For?

I’ve made a vow. A difficult vow.

A vow I’ll likely break the next time I step into an art supply store.

Dammit.

I vowed to only use the art supplies I already have…and RESIST *cries* giving in to temptation should I step into a Michael’s..or Flax…or peruse on the Blick’s site…

Which leads me to the set of watercolors I’ve, sometimes, put aside in favor of my markers. For the past few weeks I’ve come back to them and even bought a new watercolor pad.

Used a coupon at Michael’s. A justified purchase.

OK that didn’t count – I NEEDED that pad to use my watercolors!

Also – during the past two weeks, a pal and I gave ourselves themes to work on for our future art table adventures. So it was killing two birds with one stone for me.

A few weeks ago – we made ourselves draw Pokemon. Easy enough? Eh…a bit of a challenge when it’s something I don’t normally draw. But it was good practice all the same!

The cute route is a family-friendly route, right?

Week after – a Studio Ghibli/Miyazaki week – because…face it, those characters are forever.

When in doubt…TOTORO.

Chibi Totoro: NOPE

I want to say I’m improving, and I think I am. All I can say, it’s just fun. I like to think of this set of watercolors as having an unlimited palette of water-based markers.

Of course – my only gripe is the bit of waiting in between laying down color to dry. Otherwise – I love the blending and layering.

Next: Ren Eboshi

The Good: I’m putting mileage on this watercolor set. I’m seeing some improvements – aka – I’m a bit more patient between color applications.

The Bad: It’s got me looking at watercolor supplies which I…don’t…don’t…need! But WANT!

Is there a watercolor set or brand you favor?

Follow along my watercoloring adventures on my Twitter and Instagram!

 

Fanime’d

Hey folks! I can finally come up for air here!

If you’ve seen me around Twitter and Instagram – I obviously haven’t been inactive. Along with my Daily Doodles, I was scrambling to get stuff together for…wait for it…my first con!

Of COURSE you need a Gold Bikini Kylo sticker!

Of COURSE you need a Gold Bikini Kylo sticker!

We're gonna need a bigger display to show off our awesomeness.

We’re gonna need a bigger display to show off our awesomeness.

And what better opportunity to dip my feet in the crazy waters of Artist Alley-dom than at Fanime a few weeks back!

Our booth babes

Our booth babes

"That commissioned Sailor Mars. It belongs to ME."

“That commissioned Sailor Mars. It belongs to ME.”

In all – I had a blast. I definitely had so much fun engaging with folks who stopped by ย to talk about things we love to geek over as well as the stuff I was selling. My friend and fellow artist who I shared the table with, not only is she amazingly talented, but she was a ton of fun to hang out with. It was particularly cool to watch her work on commissions – her work is awesome! Though it was her second Fanime, it was a learning experience for both of us. We DEFINITELY want to do this again next year.

Some may call this junk, me, I call them treasures.

Some may call this junk, me, I call them treasures.

Just passing the time.

Just passing the time.

I’ve also learned a lot from the fellow artists from neighboring tables – tips on what’s best to sell, best ways to make items, and how to make your table look super cool. We’re going to up our game, for sure!

Who knows – I may find myself at another Artist Alley table sooner than next year. Now…to start churning out some buttons…

If you’re interested in what I’ve sold at Fanime- I’ve put together a few cute packages of sketch card prints and stickers on my Etsy. Come by and check them out!

Pushing Plushies

Remember those little plushies I’ve been taking everywhere with me like an overgrown kid?

The eyeliner's in there. And now, you'll buy it for me.

The eyeliner’s in there. And now, you’ll buy it for me.

Does that look like a muffin to you, MATT?!

Does that look like a muffin to you, MATT?!

Welp, now I’m sharing the love- on my own Etsy page!

It’s something I’ve always wanted to do – to make cute, geeky crafts and, if others enjoy them – they can take them home too! They’re hand-stitched and made to order – so each one is special.

The pocket-sized plushes currently available are unmasked Kylo Ren and his alter-ego Matt The Radar Technician. Head on over and take a look – and…if you like any of them, bring them home – AND – take them with you on your everyday adventures!

They’re portable, adorable, and photogenic – if there’s one thing these pocket-sized guys love is to have their pics taken.

Come on by my shop and check up often – I plan to add other types of plushies, sketch cards, and other wonderfully nerdy things!

I talk a lot about these things on my Twitter. Come chat with me!

Art that gets me wet (sorta)

I want to talk about my on and off again relationship with my watercolor set.

It's not you, it's me.

It’s not you, it’s me.

We had our awkward moments. Then I thought we were getting serious.

Then markers came in so…we decided to take a “break”

Then we kind of ran into each other and did some catching up.

I don’t know. This is getting complicated. One day, it feels like, yeah…this is the ONE.

And then we don’t talk to each other for days.

We are still talking about watercolors, right?

Man, I love this set. I don’t use it as much s I’d love to – I’m getting there. Seeing other artists out there using watercolors for their manga-esque pieces really inspired me to pull out the set more often.

Water you wading for?

Water you wading for?

Sounds cheesy, but it really is like having an entire set of water-based markers….with all the fun of mixing and watering down to get that color you need.

Snow White with a cosmetically-challenged apple.

Snow White with a cosmetically-challenged apple.

I learn the hard way – very often- that watercolor is something that requires patience. A LOT of patience. I love the layering of tones – but waiting a bit for the previous layer to dry can get me antsy. Being too impatient just results in blotchy bleeding and me drowning my sorrows in an entire bag of Cheetos.

 

"Please draw me a dreamy handsome companion soon!"

“Please draw me a dreamy handsome companion soon!”

Still, though, I love the results. They’re particularly fun to use when making greeting cards and ATC (artist trading cards). Probably because I like to work on smaller surfaces!

MAOW!

MAOW!

"You, me, and some Ferelden stew. What do you say?"

“You, me, and some Ferelden stew. What do you say?”

If you’re curious about this particular set – it’s called the Sakura Koi Pocket Field Sketch Box. It’s crazy handy and, for people who like to have their stuff strewn about like me – cleanup is hardly cleanup.

Did I mention TRADE? I DID, didn’t I? If you’re interested in a trade of art things, come chat with me!

 

No Marios Allowed

Nintendo! (It’s for breakfast now!)

To this day, I still can’t hear “Nintendo” without thinking of the 80s cereal commercial jingle. Sadly, I never had the joy of having edible bits of the Mushroom Kingdom and Hyrule be part of my balanced breakfast.

This past week – the first in a few of wearing actual pants for 5 days in a row (aka a job) – while limiting me on doodling time somehow picked out a theme on its own after I posted a goomba sticker. No real reason why I started doodling this guy other than “Crap, I can’t stay up late anymore and I better draw something before midnight.”

*Silently praying today's not the day he'll be stepped on by some chubby plumber*

*Silently praying today’s not the day he’ll be stepped on by some chubby plumber*

Why not a goomba, huh? Like a lot of us, he’s probably one of the first video game baddies you’ll encounter. If you’re older, maybe a ghost or speedingย  car.

Little side note on the sticker – previous week found me in the local Daiso shop…whattya know, some cheap blank stickers! Had me all sorts of ideas – I remember doing these in my really really early and embarrassing doodling days.

Still with no theme in mind, a day or two later, I was stuck again on what to draw for a daily. Eventually, Geno – the magical doll from Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars.

When you're as badass as Geno, you don't think about pants.

When you’re as badass as Geno, you don’t think about pants.

Almost anyone who knows me knows this is THE ONE CLASSIC game I can’t shut up about. I’m serious. I go on and lament how a perfect marriage of Nintendo and Square(soft/enix/hot dogs) will never happen again. At least not like this.

I think, by this time – I was already committed to a Nintendo theme. Or Super Mario characters who aren’t Mario theme which is probably more accurate. And I was still high on remembering Super Mario RPG.

Was it Bowser this time? Nope…just a cloud with an identity crisis.

He once cosplayed as cotton candy.

He once cosplayed as cotton candy.

Mallow – who had a name that leads me to believe he’s either part marshmallow and/or he tastes like one (I had to quickly look that up to see if Belome mentions him being marshmallow-y).

The guy could detach his legs from his body, it rains whenever he cries, and he still thought he was a frog?!

I feel like this on was a bit of a scramble. The tiredness was showing, and I just wanted to get something on the drawing pad. And I REALLY wanted to draw Toad. Cute little Toad. Cute little Toad about to hurl a surprised root vegetable.

"One day...we'll overthrow the Toadstool regime..."

“One day…we’ll overthrow the Toadstool regime…”

If it wasn’t Toadstool jumping around and hurling turnips in Super Mario Bros 2 (US version), it was Toad. That speed, the strength, and how painfully cute he looked when he was tiny and was just a little waddling shroom. And when he got hit by a baddie in that form – POOR BABY!

Back to Super Mario RPG – told you I can’t shut up about it. I ditched Mallow for Toadstool during her rare moments of being proactive in saving anything like..you know, the hopes and dreams of the world.

"Next Toad that plots an overthrow gets sliced onto a pizza. MY pizza."

“Next Toad that plots an overthrow gets sliced onto a pizza. MY pizza.”

Sure, her weapons were clearly stereotypical girly – except for most of her powers (that bob-omb hurling, tho) but man, could they do some wrecking when hitting the A button at the right time. So her most powerful weapon – among the fans and bitch slap gloves – was a frying pan. I’m gonna say it was a skillet made from Valyrian steel.

So that was my unintended Nintendo/Super Mario theme for this week!

Come chat with me on Twitter and Instagram -and…if you see something of interest – LET’S TRADE!

 

 

Doing it Digitally

Guess who finally shelled out a bit of money to upgrade.

I hate shopping for computers. I hate shopping for software. But I also hate trying to work on out-of-date software on a laptop that’s probably sweating as it chugs to run said software.

Anyhoo, I had to bite the bullet and get me a new comp. I also wanted a new tablet and software. And my very own gold-plated toilet. Luckily I got all, except one of these.

Say hello to my golden toilet new laptop.

Or a tabtop. Or laplet.

Or a tabtop. Or laplet.

After getting some advice and insights – I ended up with the Surface Pro 3 and Manga Studio – both at some pretty neat prices. NEAT! And I can draw directly on the screen. DOUBLE NEAT!

So what have I been making?

IMG_3435

Ok it was either her, or a butt. No, I won’t draw her butt. Maybe.

What?! Backgrounds?! I’m exploiting the heck out of that.

No! I didn't make this in MS Paint. Shut up!

No! I didn’t make this in MS Paint. Shut up!

All that practice…and I’ve improved on drawing the Judgemental Hot Dog. I’m going places!

"I don't take lightly to weenies."

“I don’t take lightly to weenies.”

With all the bells and whistles this app comes with, I’m still figuring out how to make this all fit into my style. The dreamy manga look – as lovely as that is, doesn’t really fit well with a clumsy Snow White.

Doodles

Wait…this is dreamy?

Or a Hot Dog.

Say what you will, but hot dogs ARE magical.

Say what you will, but hot dogs ARE magical.

Alls I can say is that I’ve been vying for a tablet & updated art software for YEARS and now…who knows what kind of antics I’ll doodle? Personified fruit, maybe? The sky’s the limit, people!

And butts. Always butts.

Butt doodles on this thing were overdue.

Hope he wasn’t getting someone else a snack.

Your Childhood – The Unruining

At least…that was kind of my goal last week.

In keeping with weekly themes, I finished off last week with “Nostalgia”. Nostalgic mostly, of course, for grown-ups around my age! And maybe some of our parents who had to bear with our naggings of wanting the new toys of the time.

You could say that my video game gals theme led into nostalgia since many of the characters were from classics. So I looked back on favorite characters I had as toys or watched frequently.

Leading off the week was a slightly altered version of Roxanne “Roxy” Pellegrini of The Misfits from the Jem cartoon. I’m pretty sure I started drawing her after my occasional mental rages over the so-called Jem “movie” that’s coming out. Seriously, don’t get me started…

"Out of my way. Get out of MY WAY!"

“Out of my way. Get out of MY WAY!”

Out of all the Misfits in the cartoon, Roxy was and still is my fave. Stormer’s the obvious darling – and I love her character too – but as far as just raw badassness, Roxy takes that title. Ok, sure she was in on a lot of murder attempts (as all the Misfits were), but she didn’t come from a privileged background and had that no-nonsense meanness. And she let an orphan teach her to read – then continued to be an asshole.

Ok, this one…I’m letting slip only because it was Macross Monday. And when I say Macross, I mean the first Macross – or Robotech as many of us remember. Juuuust ignore the N7 and you got your standard Valkyrie ace pilot.

If she were in a classic Macross love triangle - would she go for the dude or the chick?

If she were in a classic Macross love triangle – would she go for the dude or the chick?

Fine, fine – to be fair this uniform was based off of the Macross: Do You Remember Love? movie rather than the series. I picked this style uniform since it had more armor-ish parts to it – especially if I was doing a crossover with Mass Effect.

Oh mah gah. Strawberry Shortcake. If there was one classic toy I had a lot of, it was this one. I think about her now and squee over how adorable she was. Back then I probably thought she was so badass because she had strawberry everything. I probably thought she got to eat candy and jam all day since…there weren’t any grownups around except for those bad guys. Welp, this is how I remember her:

Go ahead, smell your screen!

Go ahead, smell your screen!

I’m still trying to figure out if toys we loved back then really were better or we’re just getting crotchety. Because I seriously don’t dig Strawberry Shortcake’s modern makeover. She looks a little too normal.

Did I say I had a ton of Strawberry Shortcake toys? Scratch that – I had a crap-ton of SHE-RA toys. Action figures with hair you can comb? Come on – do they make that anymore? Maybe, but they’ll never be as awesome as She-Ra and her hot friends. When I thought I had all her friends and that one bad girl, they come out with another series and then… my mom couldn’t catch up. Sadness.

Where was I? Oh yeaaahhh…the drawing…the nostalgia theme thing.

She lifts huge boulders and hurls bad guys with nary a scratch or tangle. HOW DOES SHE DO IT?

She lifts huge boulders and hurls bad guys with nary a scratch or tangle. HOW DOES SHE DO IT?

I have to say, despite her sword looking a little lame, I’m really proud of this one. Maybe I’ll draw a full figure of her one of these days.

Now we’re going into the realm of magical beasts with powers stored in their guts. Yup – I’m talking about the Care Bears. I didn’t have too many toys of these guys, but I regularly watched the cartoon. Now that I think about it, I was kind of indifferent to these guys. I didn’t exactly love them, but I never disliked them. But – they did come to mind when remembering a conversation I had with a friend about the Care Bears and how they could exploit their powers. Thus…Grumpy Bear. The bear of Wratth.

Shadow defines light. That was Grumpy Bear's quote, wasn't it?

Shadow defines light. That was Grumpy Bear’s quote, wasn’t it?

I’m sure he was there to remind kids that where there’s light, there’s shadow and that true happiness doesn’t come without grief. And if you you insult him, he will unleash his wrath and all will fall into darkness. That was the lesson, right?

Now we come to Rainbow Brite – maybe one of the precursors to magical girls. In my mind, as a kid, she was related to She-Ra, or She-Ra Jr. She had her own castle, her own magical steed, and a bunch of friends who…had…their own color…or something. And magical sprinkles. I watched the heck out of that cartoon, and even then I wondered why she and her friends were shorter than the one normal kid she hung out with. And where were their parents?!

Nevermind that – what the heck went on with her hair? I couldn’t tell if those were bangs or the hair that was being tied back into that ponytail that’s a few shakes away from coming loose. I remember and still am all kinds of confused with her hair. So I took some creative liberties as I’ve already done with everything else.

I was also seriously confused with her footwear. Were those...boots? Or really puffy socks with thick-soled shoes?

I was also seriously confused with her footwear. Were those…boots? Or really puffy socks with thick-soled shoes?

Googling some references of her resulted in some pics of her updated look. Sigh. I suppose she needed a makeover, especially that hair – but she doesn’t feel as magical. I’m sure that’s how a lot of us feel with our childhood favorites – the way we enjoyed them back then was always the best. Guess we’ll have to accept that these things are subject to modern makeovers…

 

…but don’t get me started on the Jem “movie”.