Surprise! I’m a published Author – Buy my book! Cheap!

Years ago, I took a year long on-line art class from one of my favorite teachers Carla Sonheim  called The Year of the Fairy Tale.  Every month Carla focused on a different fairy tale and different illustration techniques. 

After reading a few original Little Red Riding Hood stories (which I won’t link to here as I do not condone violence nor death by consumption) I had to exonerate the Wolf who I knew had gotten a bad rap because I know about “wild life” and wolves are no exception:

  • Wolves do not eat people whole like a boa constrictor.
  • Wolves never eat little girls because they prefer their meat well-done and chewy.  (Grandma’s might qualify)
  • If they did eat little girls they would never eat one wearing a red cape because they are environmentalists and prefer green.
  • And lastly Wolves NEVER dine alone

I uploaded The Real Tale of Little Red Riding Hood & the Wolf on this blog . . . years later Peggy found it . . .

As a surprise for my last birthday Peggy massaged the blog post I wrote into a book.  Peggy published the book and to my surprise . . .


and Kindle

 Buy the book and Surprise me too.

It makes a nice gift cuz it’s CHEAP! 

Click here to see how cheap:  

The Real Tale of Little Red Riding Hood and the Wolf

OR surprise Peggy!

Click here for “The Pulling, Climbing, Falling Down Tale of Maui and His Back Legs” on Amazon 

Year of the Fairy TAIL – Horace the Horse


Non-dominant hand drawing of a blind drawing!

Non-dominant hand drawing of a blind drawing!

I was asked if the eye-closed drawings get better the more you draw that way.  NOPE!  Better isn’t the goal. The more you draw with your eyes closed the funnier they get.  My goal is smiling!

Year of the Fairy TAIL – you can lead a horse to water . . .

The Magic Horse is our new fairy tale.  Gotta draw 11,000 horses with my eyes closed, one-liners and scribbly.  Every since our 7 week summer hiatus I’ve not gotten my drawing-umph back.  But here are 6 of the 11,000 horseys drawn with my eyes closed.  We are suppose to pick one that is our favorite to paint.


Favorite Bald Horse #1 – That’s his TAIL.
Favorite Bald horse #2 with an udder

Warning! Google “Hanging Naked Men Orchids” at your own risk

Remember my 100 flowers drawing assignment (41 Flowers to go  and who’s counting) from Year of the Fairy Tale?  I still have 36 flowers to draw and occasionally I get sent “interesting” flower pictures from family and friends . . . .

ORCHIDS, no comment

ORCHIDS, no comment





It is called Orchis Italica, or The Naked Man Orchid.

They come in all sorts of shapes and . . . sizes.

I’m not telling you who sent these pictures to me cuz I don’t want to EXPOSE them. 










Year of the Fairy Tale – More 12 Dancing Princesses

Wanna see some incredible interpretations of the 12 Dancing Princesses?!  

Ya gotta click here: Carla Sonheim

judy journal, collage & "stuff"

judy’s journal, collage & “stuff”

Year of the Fairy Tale – It’s GRIMM

Our new fairy tale is The Twelve Brothers by The Brothers Grimm.  The Brothers GRIMM live up to their name.  I DO NOT LIKE this fairy tale – BAAAAD king wanting to kill his own kind,  evil x 12.  We are supposed to read it 3 times.  (Thank goodness 3 and not 12!).

I know, I know . . .  all fairy tales have curses and evil and such but for some reason this one unsettled me even though it has the proverbial happy ending. Maybe there are tooooooo many brothers . . . Maybe it is tooooooo parallel to the murdering of “own kind”  all over the world . . .Maybe I’m getting verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry sensitive in my “old age” . . . just maybe . . .

Even the drawing part is overwhelming to me since there are 12 prince brothers to draw.

(This “posing prince” is Carla Sonheim’s son Wes!)

Fast 2 minute sketches

 6 of 24 two-minutes STANDING sketches

Our first drawing assignment is 24 quick sketches of PRINCELY POSES, courtesy of Wes. 

4 more out of 24 (two minute sketches)

4 more out of 24 two-minute SITTING sketches

Year of the Fairy Tale – Fleurs of the Forest

Doddling while watching mindless TV.  (When I’m fatigued I find myself sitting and watching mindless T.V.  HGTV is my favorite channel – no violence, swearing, mayhem or pestilence.)  Decided to take advantage of my mindlessness and mindlessly doodles.  Through NO intention I ended up with a forest of fleurs which goes with the French Fairy tale  “Blondine, Bonne-Biche, and Beau-Minon”  (My favorites below are #2 & 3 – I like it simpler)

Fleurs of the Forest #4

Fleurs of the Forest #4

 Before #4 I doodled with black marker

Fleurs of the Forest, #3

 Cut out fleurs arranged on blank paper.

Fleurs of the Forest, #2

Fleurs of the Forest, #2

Doodle #1.  UGLY! – so I cut out the fleurs (hate to waste ANYTHING)

Fleurs, #1

Doodle Fleurs, #1 – SEE! I told you it was mindless.

In case you want to refresh your memory here are links for my other illustrations for “Blondine, Bonne-Biche, and Beau-Minon” 

Ossytrish (Ostrich)

Ducky-Swan takes a stroll

Swan Lake Yupoed

The Enchanted Forest – Yip Yippee Yupo

Year of the Fairy Tale – Free! Princess & the ? Zine!

Our assignment, should we accept it, was to do a sketch of what MIGHT be under the princess’ mattress . . . other than a pea.  

Here’s just a hint about my sketch and what I know is REALLY under the mattress.  To see my sketch and everyone else’s click here:

The Princess & the Pea Zine

Spot illustrations for The Princess-Zine
Spot illustrations for The Princess-Zine


You will really enjoy what others in the class drew.  Some of the illustrations are spectacular and all of them are wacky (“wacky” is an artistic term, rarely used). You can access The zine and download it here:

Year of the Fairy Tale – Little Red Riding Hood Story-Board

Here’s my story-board for Little Red Riding Hood, The REAL Tail (you’ll have to click the link for the story)

Little Red Riding Hood - The Real Tail story board
Little Red Riding Hood – The Real Tail story board

Story-boards are suppose to be little sketches that go along with the story.  The sketches are suppose to be on a “board”.  Mine are on a piece of paper.  That means I made a story-paper.


Year of the Fairy Tale – The Untold Story of Little Red Riding Hood

Our next fairy tale is Little Red Riding Hood.  

Warning!  Do NOT read the original.  It’s filled with violence and death.  Here’s the real version:

The Untold Story of Little Red Riding Hood

by Freddie Parker Westerfield

Once upon a time in a land far away lived a little orphan wolf. How he became an orphan is not known, the records being lost long ago in the archives of the forest.  All the tales simply begin: Once upon a time, in a land far away lived a little orphan wolf.

Never having been around others of his own kind he didn’t know what big teeth he had. He didn’t know what big eyes he had. He didn’t know what a bushy tail he had. He didn’t know how hairy he was. He didn’t know how scary he was. All he knew was that he was alone in a big, big forest filled with creatures that ran away as soon as he approached.

Day by day, so the birds wouldn’t fly away, he sat far, far below the tree tops listening to them sing to each other from high above.

He watched from far, far away the forest creatures playing so they wouldn’t leap out of his sight.

He snuck peaks at all the critters sharing their meals from behind the bush so they wouldn’t know he was there.

Every morn he dined out for breakfast, alone. Every eve he dined out for super, alone. Every night he settled down to sleep, alone.

One day the little orphan wolf decided to set out from his forest home to find someone, somewhere to be his friend.

Along the way he came upon a little girl. She had a little curl and wore a red cape and hood. Why she wore a red cape and hood is not known, the records being lost long ago in the archives of the forest.

Because she was so young she didn’t know how scary the orphan wolf was and asked.

“Where are you going Mr. Wolf”?

“I’m off to find a friend so that I am not alone. I’m off to find a friend to dine with. I am looking for a friend to play with and most of all I want a friend to talk with. I am very lonely.”

The little girl, feeling sorry for the little orphan wolf said,“Do come with me to Grandma’s house. She makes delicious  muffins from berries I pick in the forest. She sits at the table and listens to me talk. Grandma loves all of God’s creatures. Although she can’t be your grandma, perhaps she can be your friend”

“I don’t know what a Grandma is,” replied the little orphan wolf, “but she sounds exactly like the friend I’m looking for.”

And so the little orphan wolf set off with the little girl with a curl, wearing a red cape and hood to Grandma’s house.

They passed by a giant berry bush. “Stop here to pick berries for the delicious muffins Grandma will make.” They picked bushels of berries and carried them in the little girls red cape and hood.

They passed by a field of flowers. “Stop here to pick flowers for Grandma to put on her table where we sit and she listens to me talk.” They picked bouquets of flowers and carried them in the little girls red cape and hood.

They passed a bubbling brook where cool waters ran. Stop here for a drink to refresh ourselves after all our work picking berries and flowers.” They drank from the bubbling brook and rested on the little girl’s red cape and hood so as not to get dirty.

As they passed over the crest of a hill the little girl cried, There’s Grandma’s house. Let’s see if she will be your friend.”

Grandma greeted the little girl, the little orphan wolf peeking out from behind not sure what a grandma was, with a big smile, the biggest smile the little orphan wolf had ever seen.

The little girl announced, “Grandma, I’ve brought you berries so you can make delicious muffins. I’ve brought you flowers to put on the table where we sit and you listen to me talk. I’ve brought you a little orphan wolf who is lonely and looking for a friend”

Now the little orphan wolf’s eyes grew big, having never seen a Grandma before. Not knowing what to do he opened his big mouth, showed his big teeth and wagged his bushy tail.

“My! What big teeth you have”, gasped grandma. The better to protect you with” replied the wolf.

 “My! What big eyes you have”, marveled Grandma. “The better to lovingly look up at you.”, replied the wolf.

My! What a bushy tail you have”, exclaimed Grandma. “The better to wag with happiness,” replied the wolf.

“My! How hairy you are”, said Grandma. “The Better to cuddle and keep you warm,said the wolf.

“My oh my”, Grandma sighed. “You may stay with me. I’ll feed you delicious muffin treats, and you can sit and listen to me while I talk”.

 “And because you are one of God’s creatures I will call you Dog.”

Where upon he looked up at Grandma with big eyes, opened his big wolf mouth, showed his big wolf teeth, wagged his bushy wolf tail, stuck out his wet wolf tongue and gave Grandma an appreciative lick.

He had found his friend.

Non-dominant hand wolfies

Non-dominant hand wolfies

Sketchies of Wolfies

Sketchies of wolfies

Sneak Peek into my mind – Year of the Fairy Tale

I never know where I’ll find inspiration. 

The last Princess & the Pea assignment was to create 20 different compositions and then pick one to paint using a credit card.  I was stuck – none of my compositions appealed to me.  Well . . .  truthfully there were a few that I liked . . . I just didn’t think I could paint them with a credit card . . .

Looking through my stash of  paper I came across this unfinished watercolor from Jan 30, 1989.

The date of the class I took was on the back (I remember I dropped out because watercolor was too difficult)  The paper tape that held the wet paper on the board was still there.

I was trying to paint a lemon.

Giant Pea and Green Princess


Inspiration!  A giant pea! (aka lemon).  There was my composition for the Princess and her PEA! (click if you forgot how my credit card painting turned out)

Moral of my tale:  Never throw anything away and

some fruit should be a vegetable.



Year of the Fairy Tale – Vegetable Love

The Princess loves her pea
For without it
you see
She’d be like you and me.

Pea Love, cheap acrylic paint & cheap paper

Pea Love, cheap acrylic paint & cheap paper

Assignment was to do an illustration for The Princess & The Pea using a credit card as our “paint brush”.  The horizontal lines represent the mattresses and the big round green thing is a vegetable.

I started the illustration by smearing paint with a credit card over the entire paper:





Year of the Fairy Tale – How to Solve Problems, 4 steps

The mark of a REAL Princess isn’t about enduring painful experiences but solving them.

1.  Uncover the source

2. Identify the irritant

3. Simmer solutions

4. Digest what you’ve learned

How a REAL princess approaches a problem

Take-a-look-sketchbook – Year of the Fairy Tale

Here’s a look inside my sketchbook. We’re suppose to sketch, sketch, sketch.

Remember the post about my very first art class My freshman in college art class?   – where the teacher gave me, just me, a special assignment because I didn’t know how to draw?

That was my first lesson in the value of quantity over quality when it comes to learning . . . ANYTHING.

Carla Sonheim wants us to draw, draw, draw.  I’m still working on my 100 flowers . . .

DISCLAIMER:  None of these concepts/images orginated with me.  

I copied them from various books, pictures and sources to practice drawing.


Character studies


There’s a cow in The Frog Princess


Elephant & Ant study (for the ant not the elephant)


Boid study


Character studies, experimenting with watercolor

You can’t see all the erasure marks in my sketches because I cleverly photographed in poor lighting!


Hands down hands are the hardest to draw whether realistically or cartoonisticlly

Year of the Fairy Tale – Princess, the Pea & Tenacity

This month’s fairy tale is the Princess and the Pea.  If you remember, the old queen tests to see if the bedraggled girl the prince is to marry is a REAL Princess.  She puts a pea under 20 mattresses and twenty eider-down beds.  If the girl is a REAL princess she will feel the pea as she sleeps.

I feel discomfort at everything in bed at night: slightly bunched up night-gown, the buttons on the mattress tufting, a hard pillow pressing my ear.  All this time I thought it was fibromyalgia sensitivity to pressure. Turns out I must be a REAL Princess!

(Assignment is to do vignettes of possible “bed scenes”)

The test of a REAL princess is tenacity and ingenuity, not vegetable intolerance.

The test of a REAL princess is tenacity and

ingenuity, not vegetable intolerance.

Year of the Fairy Tale
Year of the Fairy Tale

The Year of the Fairy Tale – Loosening up

To PLAY a bit and loosen up a LOT I took a cheap sheet of paper and threw watercolor on it randomly, ala a “Carla-Blob”. (Carla will put a “blob” of color(s) on the page and then discover an image inside the “blob”). I was deliberately looking for a frog image. 

Here’s a bit of my process: (wasn’t on planning on sharing this so I didn’t take a picture of the original blobs of watercolor without the froggie – )

Ah ha!  There's my frog

Blob of watercolors, aha! there’s a frog! Outlined with pencil (I made up the feet) There are other critters there but I ignored them because I WANTED a frog.

Deepen color with pastel chalk to highlight froggie

Deepened color with pastel chalk to highlight froggie and used white chalk on some of the other areas to make them lighter. Added yellow chalk so Froggie isn’t floating in space.

Tear scraps of paper, move them around on page.  Wanted the orange to bring out the orange in Froggie

Tore scraps of paper, moved them around on page. (Liked orange to bring out the orange in Froggie).  Drew white lines just to anchor the orange reeds – thought black lines would make it too busy and confusing and just wanted it simple.

wanted more "reeds/trees" to be in distance so I tore smaller pieces

wanted more “reeds/trees” to be in distance so I tore smaller pieces

No more time to play and Froggie “felt” finished  . . . I’d better get back to my office paperwork now so I can feel finished too!

Year of the Fairy Tale – A peek at my fairy-poem & Prince Tryouts

First Casting CALL to find just the right actor for my fairy-poem Prince!

Here’s a small peek at how of the beginning of the draft of my fairy-poem. It’s my inspiration for what my Prince needs to look like.

There once was a Prince

With a perpetual wince

In his kingdom alone

No wife for his own.

He looked far and wide

For just the right bride

He sailed the seas

And if you please

Roamed over the land

Wanting a maiden

to take his hand

*   *   *

and the casting calls . . . 

Aspiring wanna-be-Princes trying out for the role:

First Call Too Tall

First Call
Too Tall

Character Actors

Character .  . .  Actors

Call Back

Call Back – Strong square jaw or softer round face?

Perhaps a Prince?

Soft square jaw?  and Wardrobe

Not sure who gets the job.

The Year of The Fairy Tale – character development (mine)

Finding my characters – still drawing from photos of real people.  I use royalty free images so when the people recognize themselves I can’t be sued . . .

After this assignment I’m thinking of developing an on-line dating site where Princes and Princesses can link up to “expand their kingdoms” and conceive royal froggies (next assignment).

DSCN5517 DSCN5518

Year of the Fairy Tale – Let’s Face It!

Drawing from photos of real people using a pen (ouch, no erasing) and my non-dominant hand.

I will need a pedicure if the next assignment is using my non-dominant foot.

Bet you can tell which I drew first – the women or men!

DSCN5513 DSCN5508 DSCN5506 DSCN5505 DSCN5504

A Sharp Fairy Tale

Not a fairy tale

My memory speeds downhill

sharp blades on my skis

Year of Fairy Tale has begun!

Just got our first monthly assignment.  After watching the introductory video I’m not as intimidated cuz there are 3 different groups – beginners, intermediate and advanced students.

I can’t give you access to the course itself but here’s the charming intro so you can see what I’ll be doing. It’s not too late to sign up (unpaid, unsolicited announcement!)