Prismacolor colored pencil and graphite on Strathmore Toned Tan sketch paper
(click to enlarge)
This week's topic on Illustration Friday is "Tribute", in honor of its founder, Penelope Dullaghan, who has recently moved on to pursue other projects. Before I launch into my own tribute to Penelope and IF, I'll explain my little sketch:
When my husband and I moved to California many years ago, we were invited to dinner at the home of a family friend. Along one side of their house, they had a profusion of different varieties of fuchsia on display, and I fell in love. I haven't had any in my own garden for years, so when we recently replanted a flower bed, we decided to add some fuchsias. At the nursery, I was instantly drawn in by their names. I love it when plants are named as a tribute to a famous person. I chose two, almost as much for their names as for their beauty. One is Fuchsia "Winston Churchill" (which I love because I'm an admitted Anglophile) and the other is the one I've sketched here. With its red "hat" and white "beard", how could I resist Fuchsia "Santa Claus"?! Such a lively little blossom; the whole time I was sketching it, I kept thinking of the Flower Fairy illustrations by Cicely Mary Barker. You can see her charming Fuchsia fairy here.
Now for my tribute to Penelope Dullaghan:
One of the reasons that I started blogging a few years ago was so that I could participate in Illustration Friday. For a long time, I was a very consistent contributor—I rarely missed a week! Early on, one of my drawings was even selected to be IF's "Pick of the Week" which gave me lots of exposure and encouragement. But most importantly, I got to know many fellow artists that also participated in IF regularly. (Once I realized that if I commented on a drawing, that person often commented back, the communication floodgates were opened!) I consider a number of these people to be friends: I still visit their blogs regularly, chat with some on Facebook, and a few of us even check up on one another when we haven't posted in a while. For these reasons, I send my heartfelt thanks to Penelope for her devotion to this website that gave rise to such a wonderful supportive community.
Having said that, my recent IF entries have been few and far between. I've had a busy spring and wasn't at my drawing board as much as I'd have liked, but things are a bit quieter now, and I'm hoping to spend more time doing these quicker sketches when I'm not working on a more detailed piece. I will also be visiting blogs, making some new friends, and checking up on the old ones! So, in the spirit of the IF community that Penelope nurtured, feel free to leave a comment and say hello!