Shoo Fly, I’m Writing

How do you conquer the blank page? Are you a cat or a dog (or perhaps a bug aficionado) person? We don’t have any pets right now, other than some free loading spiders in the garage, but I spend a lot of time drawing animals.

Hope you have a smashing weekend! *

HAPPY FRIDAY!

* No creatures were harmed in the making of this cartoon. ūüôā

P.S. РJust listed 2 new illustrated cards in my Etsy shop! For the rest of April take 10% off your order with this coupon code: SPRINGCOLEEN10

Happy Halloween!

Hey all!

Just popping in to wish you a Happy Halloween…

As is my tradition (um, starting today), I’m going with the something cute

and something scary Halloween greeting

Although I imagine seeing my post in your inbox probably startled you.

But had to be done, because I miss you guys!

Anyway here’s something cute

happy-halloween-ghost-dragon-coleen-patrick

Pencil, ink, gouache, digital color, and English breakfast tea (for me, not the art) 

Okay

now brace yourself

next up, something super chilling

a practical crime scene on my sliding glass door this month

spider-fly-macro-coleen-patrick

Nikon camera, 18-55 mm lens, and a rapid, and possibly a bit skippy, heartbeat

Yeah.

The circle of life

(wrapped around a fly).

I can’t sugar coat that for you

unless you show up at my door tonight in costume

(but only tonight)

So just in case here’s something to distract and soothe you

coleen-patrick-fall-leaves-illustration-2

Hopefully I’ve calmed you enough to share in the comments your favorite Halloween costume.

Here’s a witchy throwback (way back) of a costumed me.

witch coleen patrick

Happy Monday!

The (Hefty) Possibility of Summer

One of my favorite summer memories involves a garbage bag.

Classic summer, right? ūüėČ

Okay so maybe not. But if you will, picture two large plastic bags on the grass, with a green garden hose coiled nearby.

And these two trouble makers problem solvers pursuers of possibility (who did not live near a pool at the time)

Summer memory fun

My sister B and me, Lake Michigan 

Then add water. Up to our chins. Until we are blowing bubbles across the surface of our

non-Olympic regulation size Hefty pools.

And we’re grinning.

Because we really, really wanted to go swimming.

And so we found a way. Mostly. Even if that meant we gripped the edges of our bags

to keep our personal pools intact.

Ah, summer and possibility. They go together like garbage bags and swimming.

Even now I feel there’s something about the sun popping up early and sticking around way¬†after dinner¬†that promotes more adventure.

two hummingbirds bird feeder“Hey, you wanna go swimming?”¬†

But this summer I keep thinking, do it for the process

Because it’s nice to swim (whatever your pool may be)

and blow bubbles on the surface

or go for a hike, or take photos of hummingbirds in your backyard

or write a story, draw a picture

just because

happy monday cute illustration girl

Sure I’m mostly still a problem solving, direction oriented, check off the box on my to do list kind of person…

Coleen Patrick illustration greeting cards Etsy Shop

Here are some of my drawings turned greeting cards in my new Etsy Shop

…but it’s really nice to let summer take over for a bit.

Do you have a favorite summer memory?

Happy Monday!

 

Bird Watching and My Scattered Thoughts

 

Last month I tried meditating.

The kind where you sit in a quiet place and repeat a mantra.

bird head bowed meditation prayer

It didn’t go so well.

Maybe I was a little too desperate for it to work, or maybe it was because my brain likes to tell stories and refute mantras in quiet moments. Either way it was kind of like trying to pat your head and rub your stomach while watching and waiting for a pot of water to boil.

I felt more anxious.

bird head in bird feeder

In the past, I found yoga calming, but sometimes those “yoga clouds” were not in fact carrying away my thoughts, but sorting into my to¬†do list.

flying seeds bird feeder

A black-capped chickadee slinging seeds (and perhaps thoughts).

And walking. I love walking. But I like to go over projects and stuff. Or whatever. I just like to break stuff down when I walk, not push it away.

Then last week I wanted to take some pics of the birds in our backyard. So I sat on my deck, about ten feet from the bird feeder. I had to sit still while holding my camera and somehow that stance forced me to keep an even breathing rhythm.

And so I watched the birds.

bird watching me

Or did they watch me?

I was still. Breathing nicely. And my thoughts were…I don’t know. Like scattered seeds on the ground? Because wherever they were they weren’t bothering me.

Do you meditate?

blue bird illustration

HAPPY WEEKEND! xo

The One Where I Compare Myself to a Prickly Porcupine

This week I spent hours researching website logos.

I already have a logo, but I just wanted to tweak mine, maybe find a little inspiration, make it somehow more representative of me.

Well, at least that’s what I told myself. I’m pretty sure though that I went looking for validation.

On the internet. *sigh*

Yup. I went against all my Poltergeist quoting and went directly into the internet light.

stairs follow the light

But it’s so shiny (and don’t forget the entertaining cat around the bend).

And of course, I find super amazing, beautiful mind-blowing websites that make me wonder why am I not a marine biologist who takes her flying ship into the sky to paint sparkly whales swimming with the clouds?

Um yeah.

Sometimes I forget that I get to be me.

being me coleen patrick doll

This is me. The smaller 1970s version. But a lot is still the same.

Obviously blue haired dolls make me smile/feel grateful/feel as if I have a special super power. But so does writing for kids and teens. And drawing. Then there are cookies and Scottish Breakfast tea and of course my family and road trips, and taking pictures, and people who are funny.

Okay so I’m also stubborn. And prickly, especially before I have my coffee (but I’m still a morning person, just don’t try to have a conversation with me). But there are advantages to these powers. I’m sure of it.porcupine coffee snowstorm signature

Porcupine in a snowstorm (I added snow to this drawing due to current snowmageddon forecast)

I love¬†feeling inspired by the world around me (including stuff on the internet), but Teddy (Mr. Roosevelt or President, if you’re feeling proper) said it best:

“Comparison is the thief of joy.”

So for the sake of blue haired dolls and cookies everywhere (and YAY joy!), it’s for the best that I get back to writing and drawing and other stuff, i.e. being me.

#grateful

Do you ever forget that you get to be you? Are you a morning person?

xo

The Joy of Discovery (Chocolate Included)

I love how even the tiniest of discoveries can uplift

tiny turtle close up

Tiny turtle power. 

We discovered this little guy on the Greensprings trail in Williamsburg, VA.

And just last weekend I left the house and saw this:

cherry blossom tree

The cherry blossom trees are blooming!

It seemed like they bloomed overnight.

(Much like my kids.)

river scream

We also found Edvard Munch’s Scream in the James River. Can you see it?

Oh and he’s in this doodle too.

bird doodle sketch

Just kidding.

Here’s some chocolate.

chocolate filled strawberry

Did you know that you can put the chocolate on the inside of the strawberry?!

Oh the freedom,right?

dictionary doodle

Hey, look at me doodling on the definition of writing. ūüėČ

Although,

I have to say I could’ve done without this discovery when I walked in the door at work last week:

dummy at work

Dummy at work.

Note: Mannequins are not a typical sight in a library office.

Hey, after this surprise, who needs coffee?

But back to a slightly lower level of adrenaline,

I got the proofs of the illustrated covers that I designed for my Chasing Normal series

illustrated covers chasing normal series

and I discovered I’m pretty excited with the way they’re turning out!

 

What have you discovered lately?

 

Happy Monday!!

xo