Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas from our Family Dolls! =)

Merry Christmas from the Cabrera Family!! =)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Silent Night

Monday, October 10, 2011

work in progress...

Hi there~

It has been awhile since i posted any painting work and the reason is because i have not done much at all. If you visit my miniature blog you will see that i have been so very busy, happy busy!!*grin*

As much as i love to draw , i wonder if I had to take a long term job or book deal, if I truly would be as happy as I think I would... only because I LOVE to sculpt and make miniatures too.
Anyways... I thought to post few work that is in progress for "some day".
This is a complete story and i have done the dummy book and all the sketches are done as well. there are 18 illustrations and not all are done but i thought to share some here... maybe i should add the story too...
You also will see that i added 2 pictures of the same but with different saturation... which one you like best? thank you in advance for your input.... i am curious you know... grin
sometimes one i "stare" my own work, it is hard to make decisions...sigh.

well... I will leave you know but with the news that I am working on a new illustration BUT this is different ... it has to do with my miniatures.... i hope i can post soon...

Sunday, September 11, 2011

my grand-baby- Alissa Sofia

Here is my grand baby Alissa, at 10 days old... It can not be more sweeter than this...agree??Grin

Photo credit by Erika Melson

Monday, August 22, 2011

Full Moon

It has been a while since I post, no? So sorry... I don't mean to ignore my little spot here is just that I am living a life exactly how my profile says...grin. I am into "many' forms of arts right now and I love them all.

However, my desires to illustrate does not go way... I can't ignore it either. Sometimes I am sad that I like to draw so much and sometimes I am so very happy. I get sad because I feel "alone" in a way because after sending work to publishers and hearing "nothing" or refusals , I question my self and I feel as if I am wasting time. Time is important because my time is "not" mine.
Then , I sit and draw and as I paint my little people and animals start to take form and certain 'life' that "I" see and feel it. I smile. Yes, I smile and I feel good inside.

I have been waiting to do something like my title but a little different. it was more like a mind challenge. I wanted to have 2 girls , same atmosphere, and the owl ... but flying this time.... ohhh how I love owls.!!!!grin

Here at the farm, I love to sit at our covered area during Autumn evenings and talk to my husband while sipping in a hot cocoa. many times , we stay quite listening the animals in the woods and now and then , a special sound.... an owl!*grin*

anyways.... bid adieu , hopefully not for long....smiles~

Monday, July 11, 2011

Sophie & Ally

My eldest daughter, Sthefanie, is due with her first child ( that means that I will be a Gramma!!!*grin*) next month. She has chosen to name her expecting baby " Alissa Sophia". I made a little girl and named her Sophie and her little companion ,a baby lamb - Ally!

This little animation is my first one and I know is not great but I think is sweet, don't you agree?grin

You can see the illustration HERE!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Homeless Child

Christmas is always in my mind.... can you tell?*grin*

This sweet little girl is homeless and she is playing the flute for pennies....

Ps. This was the first time that I used watercolour glitter paint..... how fun.... one can see it well even on a print..... the snowflakes...grin.

You can buy it HERE

* ps. you can view this enlarged at my store.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Farm Parade & Deep Thoughts

Watercolor & Pencil
( Click on picture to enlarge)

I had an idea of making a parade for while but I confess that the coming of 4th of july had brought back the idea to my mind. I have 2 other farm parades in the making.... one is a Christmas Parade and the other is a Fun Fall Parade but I think because this took me a while to draw and paint , I want to rest a bit before I go back to the others.*smiles*

This was my first time painting a tractor. Because my illustrations are vintage style, I wanted a tractor that would fit the period of mid 1900's so the FARMALL is what I decided to add.

I will be listing on my etsy sometime soon but first I want to frame one and see how it looks.

I was thrilled to find a company that makes barn woods frames. Mostly of my oil paintings are framed in those but the man that used to make it for me was a seller on Ebay and he no longer makes them due to an accident while working, I know, poor guy!

I have been thinking to frame with a white frame also , just to give a different look and more modern for those that likes it that way... we shall see... right now , I custom frame some and as soon they are ready I will post.

I also have an exciting news. I was invited to do an exhibition in August. It is for a book club . It is not anything big at all and honestly if was , I wouldn't do it as I don't feel ready for something like that. I was surprise to be approach in interest on this because lately I have been thinking that perhaps I should not illustrate at all. Why? Well, perhaps some artists like me can relate... or perhaps is just me..sigh.

This is why:

For as far as I can remember I have always wanted to be an illustrator for children's book. When I was a child at any time I read I would look at the pictures and let "it" tell me the story. I would them *dream* about it for while. As an adult , it is not much different.*grin*

I take the children to the library every week. They have a summer program now and all my children were piled up with books . The person that checked us out handle me a paper to enter on the drawing and I laugh when I couldn't as I took a long look in what I had and saw that I did not get one single *adult section * book, grin.... yes , things has not changed.

Now back to my thoughts ... I am struggling with directions to go. I realize that in this industry , there are few different ways that an illustrate can go. One is to pursue children's book illustrations by submitting promotion cards, portfolio or even looking for an agent. This is such a difficult road to go and I personally know a handful of artist that have been doing this for a long time and never got a book deal. I recently found one artist that I can not say her name as she does not know me, but reading her blog, I was shocked to know that she has been trying for over 10 years and nothing. This person is A*M*A*Z*I*N*G..... her work makes me dream and I can see her illustrations on so many books and yet , she is still waiting!

Then one can be I like to call - A commercial illustrator. This is something that I recently found out about it. Etsy has a LOT of artist that are exploring this path with LOTS of success. For that , when one is creating is not just making a "picture or illustration" but rather "picturing" where this will go , mostly focusing on licensing. There are lot licensing companies out there that looks for specify art work, for ex: children's plates set.... Wall stickers... fabric.... just to name few.

Now is the question.... What should I do? okay, for those that will say...'follow your heart', I am starting to think that is NOT a good idea.*sad grin*

I HAVE been following my heart and I have not found sales for me. As much as I love to illustrate what ever comes to my mind , I truly need to make some income with that. I have set my sculpting aside to devote my time mostly on this and it is frustrating not to see monetary results, mostly because I start to fell selfish and that I am letting my family down.

I have been praying about it and I am willing to try something new but again, my style is what is and that is what I know and how it comes to me because is part of my life , but the vision can be change and that is what I am hoping for.

This year I decided to make a portfolio and bravery start the road of sending out to publisher. I know it can happen or not and honestly, I don't want to be sitting , waiting and hoping that some one will say yes. the reason is because creating illustration is now a natural thing for me and it comes and "calls" me to get it done. It is a joy ,a pleasure and a blessing that only artist like me can truly understand and relate so I don't have an option to "stop",grin, BUT I can be commercial mean while.

I don't even know how to do this is practical way.... I began to think that perhaps I need to strength my outlines a bit and maybe even add a little of photoshop . I am not sure.

okay, I hope this did not come out as rumblings in a bad way because I honestly can tell you that I am SO grateful to the Lord and so thankful that God has blessed me with my gifts and the portion that HE has for me. I want to be content with my lot and if means just to make silly little illustrations then let it be but I then need to learn my limits and priorities- I struggle with that!*grin*

I was not planning to write this post and as I am re-reading it , I was tempt to delete it but thinking again, perhaps God used me to help someone that are facing similar struggles.

May HE bless you with direction and true contentment that can ONLY comes from Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Summer and gardens...

This time of the year I like to take time and enjoy the work that we did over the past few months around our farm. It is with a true sense of satisfaction and gratidute that I thank the Lord Jesus for blessing me and my family with so much more than I ever dream . I know I don't deserve anything and it is only because God is gracious that I am and have all that He has trusted in me.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Happy 4th of July!!!

I wish you a happy and safe holiday weekend!!!*grin*

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Christmas in July!


I did this illustration in Feb 2011. Christmas seems never to leave my mind and heart....grin.
This is our kitchen.
Hope you like it!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Summer is time for fishing!

Summer is time for fishing....

At least here at our farm!!!!!!!*grin*

I hope you are enjoying your summer no matter where you are!!!

You can buy a print here!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Psalm 8

" When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?" Psalm 8:3-4

One of the very first Psalm chapter to be memorized by my children was Psalm 8. I love the assurance and the Majesty expressed by the words of king David. It is a comforter to know that we serve a God that is sovereign and all power.

This illustration is again a little different than most of my children's illustrations. I am always wanting to try something new....a new approach... in drawings and painting . I am discovering that i like a the soft side a lot. I think it tells a lot about the picture mood. As you can see , i did not use black and did not highlight the edges. I worked mostly with the shadows . In my mind this is a evening were the moon was full and bright, just like when I was a child growing up in Brazilian farm land.... the moon seemed always brighter there than here and now.*grin*

I would love to hear from you with your honest feedback. What do you think? Is it too light, muddier, or it soft and fits the story?

**I still can not see my followers and nor can I follow others. I am not sure what to do. I can visit and leave comments but this is so upsetting to me.

. It is available here

Have a blessed weekend!!!!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Today is a Fairy Party!!!!

Welcome to the "Fairy Day Celebration"!!!!

I finished my painting just in time to participate to this cyber celebration. *grin*

If you like faeries and would enjoy viewing other blogs that are participating, please click on the tab on the left and a link will take you there!!

You can buy it here! Enter the special code FAIRY and get 20% off.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

what is on my desk!

Like any other work that I do, I have lots of materials that I use when I am creating. When I first started to paint with watercolors , I used the very inexpensive watercolors. There were few reasons for that: One was for the fact that I was not sure what was the difference from paint cakes and paint in tubes, and the other was -price.
I guess I did learn that we get what we pay for it . I will make a confession and tell you that only *very * recently that I finally spent the time, in learning about the difference, and the money... should I say ..LOTS(!) and bought a hand full of paints.
I bought some very fine artists color - Winsor & Newton series 3 and 4 and some Grumbacher as well.
Wow! what a difference. I am having so much fun with these new paints. i also bought some iridescent watercolor paint and they are beautiful for details too.
I then decided that I need to make a color chart. I have made couple but as much as they are helpful to me, I realise that I truly should make more for reference. the concept is one that I knew from glazing pottery as I find very helpful and I still don't understand why I didn't do this before.

Next are my watercolor pencils. LOVE them! Of course I use brushes too. I have lots of them, as a matter of fact, my birthday is next month and my children knows that this is my number one item in their list of present for me!:-)

I use plastic pallets. I don't care for porcelain. It works well for me and is washable.

BUT my favorite one is my handmade pallet from a acrylic board that I stop my husband from throwing in the garbage. I use this as a portable table specially when I want to paint outside by the pond or sitting any where under a tree or by the pastures. I have a place for my water cup in which was a special Christmas gift from a dear friend that is 86 years old.*grin*

On the bottom left of the picture above you cab see a circle and it was made to fit her cup. ( forgot the place in when took the picture, dahhh)

I love this Because is unique and attach the paper so tight avoiding the curliness when its wet. also all the paint is near and so the water--- perfect!*grin*

Next to my work is normally my models.... oh am I blessed?!!!* big smiles*

My children are focus in my life and art. when I draw I use LOTS of old pictures of when they were toddlers , as I love the details of the natural gestures specially fingers and toes but faces... faces are very important too.

I like to draw a little older children too . My sweet Becca is often called to pose for me. As you see I took 3 pictures of her and choose one. I want to make a faerie under a mushroom in a raining day.

I doddle my first idea and I like it. I use a very fine mechanical pencil and draw straight into the watercolor paper. If one day I buy a good light box, I will then work on my sketches but for now as I don't have one, I work so light on the watercolor paper that when I erase my mistakes I don't ruin the paper. If I try to copy eye to eye from my sketch I always end up loosing something like an expression.. and I hate that. I will then start my project already not liking it sigh so a while ago i decide to only sketch the idea , like the one above and then work on my lines and final drawing direct on the WC paper.ugh! I hope I made sense with my broken English!

I spent a good time thinking and thinking while I was feeding the chickens. I then walked thought the pastures back home ( my barns where the chickens lives is in the other side of the pastures) I got back to my picture and prayed . I prayed as I was walking too. I always ask God to work thought my hands and to show me what to do and to help me improve.

I then felt ready and start drawing. to my completely surprise , my little faerie became more like a princess. I start out with a crown but later I removed because the children told me that she look like Thumbelina. The large frog was drawn appears in my mind . I made him into a "prince to be".

I the background also start to come to me... this is when I get excited. I have a vision!

I see that my pictures are not good. I was not checking the light source when I took them and some were taking at mid night anyways.

I called Becca to see and she made a "face"- she hates frogs... in all animals , she is scare of them!

I then promised her that I would make him very lovely and not freighting at all!*grin*

ps. clicking on each picture , will enlarge it and you can view it better!

I will post my finished piece next time!*grin*

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Fairy & Fireflies

Last post I talked about freedom. I truly feel more free now but I also feel that my art is changing as I am. I am glad I am because I want so badly to improve, and I don't mean to make it perfect but to grow to the direction that will please God.

My next post will be about the materials that I use and (((WHAT))) I have change in this area. I am discovering new techniques and ways to use it. This may be a interesting post for some of you that uses watercolors too.

I wanted to try something different and challenge my self. I absolutely *love* to draw and paint from reality with a twist of old fashion ; however I felt a need to come out of my shell and do something completely different.

This is how this little fairy child and the fireflies came to me.....*grin*

I have lots of new ideas and as an artist this is precious. There are many time that I get discourage with lack of inspiration but right now I am glad I am not there.*grin*

I had a lovely day today. Truly a blessed one. Our pastor preached about pride and I was humbled by it. The world that we live in teaches us about self-steem and to have pride but all this is against God's word. Pride separates man from God because it lead us to self boasting and not to give credit to God.
Pride refuses to look to God for help and also creates disregard to Him AND others.
Our culture feeds us with the "Gospel of self steem" and the bible tells that this is not a virtue.
We read about the arrogance and violence of Human Pride in Genesis 4 17-24.
In contrast of this is the humility of Christ in our Salvation. Philippians 2:4-11 , describes it so well.
So my dear reader and friends, I will leave you now wishing you a wonderful and blessed week ahead of you!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Finding myself

When I was a little child, I was told to try my best in everything I did. Yes, I do tell my children the same thing, in fact I tell then that what ever they do , do it as if you were doing for Jesus.

Well, one thing that sometimes as parents we forget to stress is that our best is not always even close to be perfect and that is perfectly fine.*grin*

I was a ballerina and all I heard was : "You are doing great now you can get better".

The question " when (things) will be good enough" only came to me after I had all my children and after I started to draw and paint with watercolors.

My main purpose painting a flower , for ex, when I painted with oil paints was to make as "perfect" as possible. I wanted to full one's eyes and to make it as realistic as possible and please what I am saying here does not mean that if you work that way , I think is wrong.... not at all, I am just sharing some conflicts and some answers that worked for ME and perhaps you too have gone through the same ... or maybe not.*grin*

I have never been truly happy with my art work ( mostly paintings) and had no idea why. Then I start drawing..... my drawings were somehow funny lines trying to imitate perfection ...all in vain.

Ohhhh it was not working. I didn't spent time drawing and all my oil paintings would first get a sketch with my brush only and the shapes would come to life as I painted so I had no "real" practice with drawing.... but a desire to paint with water color was growing stronger in my heart.

I figure it was a matter of practice so like in all I have been told- Make it perfect.

What is perfection? Does the bible tells me?

I begin to pray about this .....mmm ....about 4/5 years ago, I think. I also was "searching " in God's words for answer.

It was with much excitement that I found out that there was not such thing as 'perfect' and the only perfection in life is the Lord- The Trinity.

This truly became real to me and in so many aspect... my life art changed.*grin*

Tasting freedom...

I began to experiment some sort of freedom that I did not know and has affected me tremendously.

I also start to look through a window that was new to me.... other artists like Tasha Tudor, Lisbeth Zwerger, Renee Graef even my "favorite illustrator " Beatrix Potter... just to name few.

I saw a freedom when they illustrated that did not call for a ruler, a perfect line ,or even perfect watercolor combination.... and yet a lovely , most amazing illustrations that combined not only a beautiful finished piece but some imperfection that brought so much charm and , if I may say, realism to the illustration. Realism I say , because life is not perfect.*smiles*

I have been dedicating my self to drawing a lot these past 2 years . One can see me drawing just about everyday.
I sketched this little girl and her dolly today.... this is not perfect ... but I like it!*grin*

Monday, June 13, 2011

Color or Sepia: Would you kindly help me decide??;-)

Hello dear readers & friends~*grin*
I would graciously appreciate if you could help me with this post. I need an outside opinion. If I explain too much it may influence on your decision so I would only ask you to take a look at these 2 illustration and leave me a comment which one you like best and why.Thank (((you))) so much in advance for take time in your busy schedule to do this for me!!*grin*

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Family Dolls Stop Motion Video

Gabby and Becca surprised me with this little film today. I laugh a lot ,but mostly important to me is to see them playing with our family dolls and with each other despise of today's time where most of the teens don't even care for dolls and simple play.*grin*

Monday, May 30, 2011

Mini book and new work


Here I am, happily for having the opportunity to sit and write a post. It has been so very busy here at the farm. We finished planting our garden, repairing all 4 chicken barns and so much more.
I was able to visit some blogs this past weekend and to my dismay many of them were not taking my comments. That was so upset but I guess many people are having the same blog problems.I shall persuade!!!

Well, to the news.....*smiles*

My little book is listed on my esty store. I will truly tell you this, the cost of printing , plus the materials and time to make, does not pay to make them for sale but I was determine to make few for Christmas gifts and some for sale. If you like a copy, send me note or buy at my store. I won't be making more than the ones I already made.

Now... the illustration above is my newest work. I am taking a big breath and some ( NEEDED) courage to put together some work and send out to publishers. It won't be ready for while as I am taking my time and reviewing my work until I am satisfied. At the end, if I am not completely in love with the results , I won't send it until I get there.

Opposite of most of work that I do, when I illustrate , I do one page at a time although I like to have all my sketches done first.Developing a character is difficult at time because so much has been created with animals that leaves very little room too be "original". If one draws from reality, almost for sure it will look like some one's else work, so for that reason I decide to draw in a fantasy level this time. Also this book is all about fairytale animals , there are only a farmer (person) - very different than the rest of my work in which are mostly with children.
I am glad in taking my time because this will allow me to pray about it and to rest in the Lord Jesus for His perfect time and will. I want so badly to be a published illustrator that sometimes I wonder *if* this is the Lord's will or just mine. Then I think of God himself, creator of all Heavens and Earth and its majesty and "how" he created and how he said : "It was good". *grin*

As all good things come from the Lord, I do believe my gifts comes from Him and no matter what , if I do or not become published , still I should continue to create.

The satisfaction and good feeling of finishing a picture is only truly known by the artist and I know that other artists like me can relate to me and how I feel.

Okay... I hope this did not sound as if I am rumbling.... I am so very happy today and all the little encouragements that God has sent me.... including .... YOU!*smiles*

click on picture below to go to my shop:-D

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Rainbow Collection of Proverbs for the Young miniature book!

Last year I shared in this blog some illustrations that I was working on however; I did not say what they were for.

Now, I am excited to share that these illustrations were for a proverb's book that I illustrated using my "children's illustrations" to describe few Probervs from the Holy Bible.

I then made into a miniature book. I honestly could not have been able to make it if was not for my dear friend and incredible bookmaker Pat Sweet from Bo Press Miniature Books .

As you can see, this is a hard cover book....

.... with a jacket cover .Book measures 2 1/2" x 2 5/8". One can read and enjoy this mini book just like a large one. Also , it is scale for any MDS BJds, American girls or any other dolls .

There are 24 pages and 12 illustrations . below is a sample of few that I used for this book

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Oil, watercolor and Character choices

Hello dear readers~*grin*

I have been thinking for while to do a post like this and the reason is because I wonder so much my self about sketching,painting, and so many other aspects that involves creating an illustration, that Idecide to share with you some of my "findings", grin, if I can call it that way.

You see... as long as I can remember , I have always painted with oil painting and never , ever used a pencil to draw. When i finally came to the point of deciding that i want to illustrate children's book, and after trying *painting with wool* ( a whole different post) , I started to draw and tried water colors. It has been less than 2 years now and I consider this medium very new to me. I love the way the watercolor makes me free and more and more I feel leaning to become even more "adventurous" with this medium.

The picture below , is my oldest daughter - Sthefanie when she was 14 years old... almost 10 years ago. The painting above is an example of how I painted with oils.... I always knew I could never have been a portrait painter... I was never good that way; However I was able to paint subject that did not show face completely and as a matter of a fact , I did several portraits of my children and they hung around the house but nothing like what I am doing with the watercolors today.

My children have always been the biggest inspiration of my life for everything i do. I think I was born to be a "momma" more than anything else. When my children were young, I had 6 under 8 years old once!!:-)) it was a little crazy , but because I have a wonderful husband and incredible father to my children , it made an amazing difference , I think!

So, here I am trying to illustrate and because I feel that I like to illustrate from life, Like dear late Tasha Tudor, I had to find my own source of direction. How? I use pictures. I have Thousands and thousands of pictures from my children at all the stages of their lives and this is has become my most valuable source of information but I am not limited to that alone, they , the children are also my models for my today's illustrations.

This is a wip of an illustration that I am currently getting ready to finish and paint. Here the children are picking wild blackberries. This is a common thing for us during the summer time. It is normal to have one of them"eating" the fruits a little more than they should ,grin.

In here , you can see that I actually had my daughter Gabriela posing for me. the reason i do this is because I don't have enough experience to draw from my memory yet , only some very simple poses but i find that if i have a reference it helps me to see when the light is coming and when I draw and paint I can add the "folds" for the skirt for ex, much much better because it comes from the real thing.

Another aspect is that is important to me that my children be part of my illustration. They are my life!*smiles* and as blessings they are to me, I feel that I want to share and this is *my* way to do that.

I can add or make changes as I see fit once i can the most important in- the faces and hands! I find these very very important!

It normally takes me 10 to 15 pictures to get one that I like. Mostly because my teenagers laugh to much when they pose and i don't help it either... I feel as I am still 12 years old my self!*grin*

I am also inspired by other ways too. I have to be careful with my distractions, specially in church. As much I trained my own children to sit still in church at a very Young age and they did, I see that not everyone thinks the same and I have to be careful because a little child in front of me can lead me to smile in which does not help her momma , *blushing*, and I totally get distracted from the service, not right either,*severe blushing* ....

so as I say... been an artist is a blessing and a curse.... Blessings as our own Creator is the Master of all and a curse because everything to me is poetic and drives me to places that I shouldn't always be, but Jesus is Gracious and teaches me every day to focus in the most important of all - Him!

My miniature dolls are often seen in my illustrations too. So as you see , I am influence by all around me. I hope this post was interesting for you and if you are an artist searching for way to progress your work, perhaps this will help you to have some new ideas!

I would love to hear from you!*smiles*

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