Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Eggmond is the close friend & walking companion of Aubergina. He is just a little fellow now, but who knows what he's capable of growing into?


Monday, February 27, 2012

T is for Tengu

This week's entry for AlphaBeasts! is Tengu, a red-faced, long-nosed goblin that roams the world making mischief & punishing the vain. You may have seen masks of this character in Japanese restaurants.

Acrylic on advertisement for Post Bran Flakes, scanned from Delineator magazine, December 1930, ~ 6"x9"

What a lovely, supportive headline, eh? And the copy is even more so:
"You may as well be frank with yourself-- let the least shadow of fatigue dim your facial freshness, let the tiniest trace of tiredness write its hairline autograph at the corners of your eyes or mouth-- and-- "She looks positively washed out, poor dear!" they will say-- "She's one of my best friends and I wouldn't have her hear me say it for worlds, but I'm afraid, so afraid, she's beginning to lose her looks."

Of course, bran flakes will reverse that pesky aging process! Ah, advertising. I sometimes wish Tengu would target copy-writers!

Saturday, February 25, 2012


This poor fellow seems a bit confused. Then again, maybe he knows something we don't!

Another character for the painting, created in Photoshop.

Thursday, February 23, 2012


More tree-dwellers for the painting... Photoshop with added background.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Here's a poor orphaned creature that I originally created with the aforementioned painting in mind... but after several tries I'm not sure it I can find a good spot for it there. If I can't make it work, at least it will have a home here. Might you have any food scraps handy? It takes a lot of calories to keep all those legs going.

Created in Photoshop.

p.s. I'm noticing a strange & annoying phenomenon lately... my images show up in Blogger with considerably less color nuance than they do in PS. (I'm comparing to the jpeg, not the original PSD of course.) I don't remember having this issue until recently. Has something changed? Are they auto-compressing or something? Has anyone else noticed this? Am I losing my mind????

Monday, February 20, 2012

S is for Sazae-oni

This week's entry for AlphaBeasts! is probably about as close as I've ever come to painting a pin-up. Not exactly my usual genre! :-O

Sazae-oni is a shape-shifting bakemono who lives inside a turban shell. Sometimes she disguises herself as a beautiful temptress in order to lure sailors to their... dismemberment, shall we say?

I decided to depict the moment afterwards, when she begins to reveal her true, rather crabby nature to her poor victims. After all, vamping it up can be fun, but sometimes a girl's just gotta relax & be herself.

Acrylic on illustration scanned from Wonders of the Heavens, Earth and Ocean, 1887 (with some Photoshop touch-ups in the grand pin-up tradition) ~5.5"x8.5"

Friday, February 17, 2012


More characters (created in Photoshop) for the painting I'm working on, with background added from an old school music book.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Spotted Together...

I'm not one to gossip, but I couldn't help noticing these two oddments strolling into a painting together on Valentine's Day!!! If anyone can add to this sensational story, please share your insights in Field Notes below.

Full disclosure: this image has been Photoshopped.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Forging Valentines!

No oddment today (it's an even day, after all)-- but I do have a soft spot for valentines, & thought I'd share one of my oldest favorites-- it's an original Ernest Nister, No. 3078 if you're counting, & when you pull the tab, Cupid's hammer comes smashing down on the anvil. It has been loved a little hard over the years, but the tab still works & I can't resist playing with it every February!

Wishing you all your favorite celebration of the day, whether that means roses & chocolate, or hanging around the workplace wearing nothing but a leather apron. ;-)

Monday, February 13, 2012

R is for Rokurokubi

This week's entry for AlphaBeasts! is Rokurokubi. These yokai look like normal humans by day, but at night, they are real rubber-neckers.

Acrylic on illustration scanned from True Experiences Magazine, February 1937. Honestly I couldn't believe my luck when I found this illo & caption!

Click here if you'd like to see all my AlphaBeasts thus far.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Like Water for Oddments

Here's another character design. This is the only one in the painting & we've caught it at a quiet (thirsty) moment, but I think it's actually a very playful beast. I like to imagine a whole pondful of them, splashing around & spraying each other.

(This isn't the painting itself-- it's the Photoshop color sketch, touched up & background added.)

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Another being from the painting I mentioned...


Tuesday, February 7, 2012


This jolly little critter is a character design for a painting I'm working on. In the actual painting he is about 1.75" tall.


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Q is for Qirin

This week's entry for AlphaBeasts! is Qirin, better known to beer drinkers by its Japanese spelling, Kirin. 

This beast has many confusing manifestations, both Chinese & Japanese. It is sometimes known as the Chinese Unicorn, although in most depictions it has two horns. Some versions are very close to Longma (with dragon-like head & scales & a horse-like body), some more deer-like, & some like a giraffe. There is speculation that this creature may have been inspired by travelers' descriptions of the giraffe, & in fact, the modern Japanese for "giraffe" is "kirin."

I chose a combination of deer- & giraffe-like elements, along with the traditional flames.

Acrylic on an illustration (~5"x7" ) scanned from St. Nicholas Magazine, July 1920. I love the caption, & it explains golf to me, since the 20% that is visible to outsiders seems unbearably boring. It makes me wonder what on earth all those straight-laced dudes in polo shirts are imagining out there on the links! (Of course the article was actually all about visualizing the shot, but I like my version better.)

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Graphite Gang

I've been very remiss in my Oddments (just too much on my plate) but last night I did manage a little pencil doodle for IF's "Suspense" prompt. I don't know what this lot are up to but it doesn't look good.

Pencil on paper, ~ 4"x4"

p.s. This has nothing to do with oddments, but a wonderful artist friend of mine, Allison Sommers, could really use your help: her beloved pet hedgehog Ludwig has developed a tumor & she is having a sale to raise medical funds. If you would like to buy some amazing art & help a suffering beastie, please go here or here.