Happy New Year!

Hey Happy New Year! I am happy to announce a few new projects that I will be posting soon. My New Year’s resolution is to have multiple completed and professional illustration projects. Those would include comics, digital paintings, and products made with my illustrations.  My style and approach to my art has changed dramatically since I left college. It has changed in the last few months! I am eager to challenge my skills and to share my art with you all.

Below is a short list of projects and when they are set to debut!

Cozy Animals: It’s my first serious venture into digital art in a long time. I am creating a series of five digital drawings that depict different kinds of warm, cozy scenes during winter. These drawings are made to lift the spirits of viewers, especially those in cold overcast areas. This series will be posted from January 3rd until January 13th on my website gallery

Update: It became the Stay Warm Series with three digital paintings.

30 Day Challenges: I will do 30 Day Drawing Challenges only on Instagram every month.  Each month my art will relate to a pop culture reference. For example, the month of January will be 30 Days of Pokemon. I decided to focus on TV shows, movies, and books that have inspired me and entertained me through out my life.

Bear Bear Comics: Bear Bear Comics will be a daily gag comic starting on January 16th. Bear Bear Comics are loosely based on my life. The comics are made to celebrate small victories in life. Bear Bear Comics are set to last all through 2017.

Update: For now Bear Bear Comics are update twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday.

I will announce more projects as the year continues. Please to continue to watch and read my blog for more updates. I am open to constructive criticism and lots of encouragement. I genuinely want your feedback as I am moving forward as a professional cartoonist. Thank you so much for your support thus far.

Edited by: Momma Bear

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Unusual Inspiration at Midwest Furfest!

On Friday, December 2, 2016 I went to Midwest Fur Fest in Rosemont, IL.  After a long Thanksgiving, it was nice to take my mind off the holidays and try something new.  I wanted a change of pace, and I figured it would help my morale and my art some how.  Furries don’t have the best reputation.  They get pegged as weirdos, perverts, and other unmentionable names.  Some of that is true, but at the heart of the fandom are creativity and enthusiasm that I found rejuvenating.

When I arrived there were people in fursuits that greeted attendees. I tell you on a cold November day in Chicagoland, it warmed my heart to be greeted by a cute dog in a pink bow. Literally, a person dressed as a dog gave me hug! I was hooked. The Hyatt in Rosemont was filled with birds, dogs, cats and other creatures.  These were people living their fantasy as neon griffins or their favorite team’s mascot.  In my opinion, Fursuiters are the living embodiment of character design.  The creators have an idea, and it comes to life right before your eyes.  I can image that is very satisfying to have your idea on paper become tangible to yourself and the world.

The con wasn’t just about the fursuits; it’s a place for visual artists and writers to showcase their talents.  Room after room was filled with comics, stickers, and furry accessories.  The furry community is very grassroots in that the creators are regular people.  They aren’t backed by large corporations, and I had trouble finding a booth or table by a mainstream company.  The art was original from the prints, to the sculptures, and the handmade jewelry. I saw some fan art peppered in from Disney’s Zootopia and Lion Guard; the artists provided a different reinterpretation from the original.  The varied styles from sketch zines of cats to beautifully painted dragons made a fine art junky like me feel very comfortable. Being at Midwest Fur Fest made me remember my first love was a mouse.

I went home feeling more hopeful about my own art work.  It’s not that I don’t have the talent or the know how. I did feel like my art was missing a story to tell. Although the artists use animals for their art, the artists were able to connect to their audiences’ varied human experiences. If the story was about a first kiss to a tiger or a last goodbye to their home in the jungle; the artists made the worlds believable, fun, and memorable.  That’s something I want to do with my art work too.

I will definitely go back next year and go to few more fandom specific conventions.  I was able to draw inspiration from the convention that I think will last all winter.

Links: https://furfest.org

Credits: Edited by Brother Gator

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