Protea "Pink Ice"
11" x 14" Prismacolor colored pencil on Strathmore Bristol
Our California summer is slow in arriving this year, but while I was finishing this drawing, I could pretend that I was enjoying a warm, dry African climate. This is the "other" protea that I mentioned in my last post. I continue to be fascinated by the botanical world: drawing the outer part of this flower was almost identical to drawing an artichoke or a pinecone.
Speaking of Africa, I have to tell you about my new favorite children's book, Me...Jane by Patrick McDonnell. (See it over there on my sidebar?) If you're a fan of children's books, you'll know the feeling of paging through a picture book that is so wonderful that it chokes you up a bit. This book is a look at the childhood of Jane Goodall, and speaks eloquently to children about making their dreams come true. Jane Goodall has long been a hero of mine—many moons ago, I started out as a biology major in college, with visions of romping through the wild, notebook in hand, à la Jane. After a few tedious late nights in the lab, mating fruit flies, I switched to Art & Design, my other passion. (Interestingly, my son is now a field biologist, romping through the woods, notebook in hand, à la Jane.) Patrick McDonnell, best-known for his comic strip, "MUTTS", has created a masterpiece. Looking a bit like a field journal, this book treats you to his charming, sensitive illustrations enhanced by gorgeous vintage engravings behind the text, as well as some of Jane's own childhood sketches...and then there's that goosebump-inducing photo on the last page. Do yourself a favor, and get a copy of this one. Or better yet, sit down and read it with a child that you love...and get goosebumps together.
Note: I'm trying to tweak the type that I'm using for these posts. I was using a smaller type for the past couple of weeks, but it suddenly looked too small to me today. I'd appreciate any feedback as to which is more legible to you, or, being the indecisive type, I may be toggling back and forth between the two forever...UPDATE: Thanks for the feedback; I'm switching back to this larger type...for now!