Welcome to my blog , The Hare Illustratère. I'll be posting about my art process and journey as an illustrator/author here. To find out more about my whimsical & elegant illustrations on nifty things you can buy, please Visit my other blog, The Art Hare's Wares.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Bye Bye 2017

Can't say I'm sorry to see 2017 go.  Like any year it had it's good and bad and meh moments.

Had a lovely challenging illustration commission that I hope to be able to share... soon. Challenging because while it involved animals in costumes, YAY, it also involved a lot of detailed backgrounds and architecture. This project has taught me to truly respect illustrators that excel in backgrounds, especially urban scenes. As always, hope to acquire more fun illustration commissions in 2018.

It was also the year I became more political. Previously, I had always felt that my political views were private and I didn't talk or share much about it on social media. After all you didn't want to offend a potential buyer or client with your personal beliefs. However 2017 was different and I did share my views more openly. My feeling is that you can't be silent when you see things heading in the wrong direction. Did I loose out on any jobs, commissions or sales??? Not that I noticed. I did tire of seeing my twitter feed overtaken by political tweets rather than lovely art. Unfortunately, I fear there will be 3 more years of watching the planet being parceled off to line a few greedy pockets and other evils.

In 2017 I got excited about quite a few art challenges BUT I ended up not fulfilling most of these. Which made me a bit sad. I end 2017 with a long trail of unfinished personal art.  Granted, I had real paying work deadlines. Good excuse not to be distracted by personal art projects. I'm not complaining. I need those paying projects. Rather I'm annoyed that I couldn't figure a way to balance my financial and my creative needs. Definitely need to work on that.

Only did one postcard campaign in 2017. I usually do 2 if not 3. The problem with commissions that you can't share is that it's makes self-promotion harder. Another reason to figure out the balance between paying work and nonpaying. Personal art is where you make your discoveries and build your future and hopefully your fortune. Here's to returning to 3 postcard mailers in 2018 and more  creating and submitting

Made a huge art process discovery. I need to sketch, ink, paint, Photoshop something every week. So if I'm working on the sketch phase of a BIG project, to keep me in top form I need to also be doing "warm-up inks, paintings, Photoshop art" on the side. That way when the sketch phase is done I can move on to the ink phase without going through the I forgot how to... moment first. Less redos and more doing.  I know a bit of a duh, obvious idea but a big revelation to me and my art process. I should probably add creative writing to the weekly mix for 2018 too.

Wishing All a Happy, Healthy, Creative , Prolific, Productive and Prosperous 2018!

Illustration blog: dtdelosh.blogspot.com
twitter: @dtdelosh

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Sunday, December 17, 2017

Lion & Mouse Illustration Process post

Ok I admit it. I've been absent from this blog. I've been busy working on a big hush hush illustration project which is finally winding down. Unfortunately, I can't share anything from it yet BUT I can share the illustration process of my personal Christmas card.

Lion & Mouse © Diana Ting Delosh
Inks on watercolor paper & Digital.
Here's the CARD
I all begins with a pencil sketch. As you can see, originally was thinking of doing some hand lettering on the top.
Lion & Mouse Pencil Sketch
 © Diana Ting Delosh
Next comes the ink. Currently I'm using a brush on watercolor paper. It gives me thicks and thins as well as various tones of blacks and texture. I feel it all adds to the illustration's energy.

Lion & Mouse Ink Line © Diana Ting Delosh
I use colored inks to paint right over my black lines. I've lengthened the lion to give myself some leeway with the final design. I will mess with background on a separate layer in Photoshop.

Lion & Mouse © Diana Ting Delosh
Colored Inks on watercolor paper
Experimenting with the background. I know I want stars and a magical quality to the sky. Time to experiment with backgrounds. The sky is actually a sky I had previously painted with colored inks on watercolor and scanned.  I like the texture of real paints on paper. The stars are drawn in digitally on their own layer. Thank Goodness for the Wacom Tablet!

Lion & Mouse © Diana Ting Delosh
on Background-A

 Not enough oomph. It still lacks that magical quality I was after. Make the sky darker? Toss? NO! Thank goodness for layers. Just experiment with adding digital swirls and more stars and layers until... Voila! See the finished design at the beginning of this post.

Happy Holidays to ALL!

Illustration blog: dtdelosh.blogspot.com
twitter: @dtdelosh

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Sunday, April 30, 2017

Sky Pony Critique Winner


Yup it's real. I received the official winner e-mail and it's been announced over at D2PB

In case you're wondering I followed the rules to Win a Sky Pony Editor Critique: bought my copy of Patricia Keeler's, adorable picture book, Lizzie and Lou Seal and put my name in the hat by sending an e-mail to Sky Pony Press. Now to be honest, I almost didn't do it because I figured I never win these lottery things. Sure I've won things: books, a pink flamingo balloon, goldfish, even SCBWI conference tuition but for some reason I was sure only other people won reviews from editors or agents. And then of course I myself was sharing this great opportunity on Twitter and FB so even when I did throw my name in the ring I  didn't think I'd get it. I mean every other author and author/illustrator was applying. Right? Which just goes to show that you just need to be in it to win it.

So what did I win? An "Above the Slush" opportunity to submit a manuscript/dummy and have it reviewed by an editor. Really reviewed. Which in this day and age of  publishing houses only replying if interested is a BIG DEAL. At least it is to me. Now I'm off to polish my picture book dummy to a high gloss before I officially submit it to Sky Pony. Wish me luck.

Illustration blog: dtdelosh.blogspot.com
twitter: @dtdelosh

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Hand Lettering News

In the Fall of 2016, I was approached by Quarto UK to submit samples of my hand lettering to appear in the gallery pages of a Hand Lettering book they were working on. I believe they found me via Twitter. I submitted 3 hand lettering samples in all. They chose my FLOURISH. You can find it on page 19 in the Gallery of the book, Hand Lettering Creative Alphabets for Any Occasion by Thy Doan Graves published by Quarto, UK and St Martin's Griffin, US and Canada- published Spring 2017.

Flourish on Page 19 of Hand Lettering Creative Alphabets for Any Occasion by Thy Doan Graves

Below (from left to right) are the US and the UK covers for the book. Can you spot the difference?

Find more samples of my Hand Lettering in the TYPE section of my Portfolio.

If you're interested, You can read about my how I approach Hand Lettering at Drawn To Picture Books: Hand Lettering Process Post by Diana Ting Delosh

Illustration blog: dtdelosh.blogspot.com
twitter: @dtdelosh

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Thoughts On Being Creative

I've been thinking a lot about creativity. Probably because I've just crawled out of a creative black hole. Usually I don't worry too much about feeling blocked as I think it's like insomnia eventually you will fall asleep. So I figured this uncreative state would just pass as I went through my daily rituals and worked on current projects. However this time around my lack of creative thought was lasting much too long. I felt like all my receptors were coated in slime so nothing triggered an inspiring thought.

First I thought it was because I was sleep deprived. I remember when I was a new mom my creativity  suffered. Getting more sleep did help my overall well being but the numbness remained. I did continue to slog on with whatever was in the studio. After all the real thinking part of those projects was already done -now it was just doing the work. So at least being productive, although lacking omph.

The last time I was in such state was right after 9/11. I remembered feeling insignificant and helpless. I found comfort watching bumble bees buzzing around my garden and thinking that nature would prevail even if we humans were bent on killing each other. What broke me free last time was an illustration commission and a rush job from 1 of my regular clients. Maybe I wasn't significant but I was still needed in my small world. So I, and the world moved on.

Which brings me to my current state of unease. Since the election, I've felt that all I've taken for granted as life in a democratic society is under attack. Even common sense notions about protecting our planet because we live on it have been sacrificed in the name of greed and stupidity. My new routine includes contacting my congressman and senators about things I'm outraged over. It's the effects of all those NYC signs that say if you see something say something. There is no hiding from what is going on. No peace or comfort that nature will prevail.

Unfortunately, this time around there were no calls from dream clients or rush jobs to distract me.  This time around it was a string of small acts. Slogging forward on my current PB dummy revision. Even if it's going too s-l-o-w. Looking into yet another, as my hubby would say, harebrained scheme: opening an Etsy store. (I'll let you know when it's open). But the thing that really flipped my switch was submitting my picture book dummy out yet again. Which at first I thought was odd but I was still happy that something finally worked. Now, I don't think it's so odd. When you submit something you are saying you believe in your project/yourself. Whether the submission get's an acceptance or a rejection is a different story.

What do you do that helps to buoy your spirits and keeps you creative?

Monday, January 30, 2017

Happy Year of the Rooster!

Rooster © Diana Ting Delosh
Ink, pen, brush, watercolor
Bye Bye 2016. 
Hello 2017! 

Don't know about you but for me, 2016 was one of those years, as a friend tactfully said maybe it's your transitional year. Perhaps. Whatever. On the plus side and going forward, I did have a few AHA moments that I'll share with you. I guess these are my sort of resolutions.

• To only apply/submit to things that are appropriate for my skills, and tastes. I tried a few paths last year that I knew probably wouldn't work in the name of being open and trying new things. Mind you there are problems with tunnel vision too. Still, I need to be mindful of being true to me and not waste time on long shots... just because it's an opportunity. Balance is needed between the two extremes.

• Try NOT to wait until the last minute to submit something before the deadline. Unfortunately, if it's a submission opportunity sometimes they close that window of opportunity early due to a flood of submissions. Yup, it happened to me in 2016. Create and submit, ASAP.  Also, my theory is that they start forming their opinions as the submissions come in. So if you wait too long your submission has to be that much stronger. As I said, it's only my theory.

• Must Create Faster. Come up with something unique and beat the crowd to the finish. Of course it's has to be wonderful but sometimes all the fussing may mean that you'll miss out. And then your wonderful idea is no longer unique. You ever notice that as soon as you have a great idea for a star-nosed mole character or other odd animal, that there seems to be a trend for them while you're working on your idea? It's like the universe spied and snitched on your plans.

• BE BOLD. Believe in yourself, ideas etc. - create and submit. Sure you may know everyone else will be creating ABC but if you're thinking MNOP do it. Never mind what everyone else is doing and what you think is expected of you. Follow your instincts. When I did, it worked out really well for me.

Here's hoping we all have something good to crow about SOON!

If you missed it, take a peek at  at my latest post on D2PB: Happy 2017 Reboot 

Illustration blog: dtdelosh.blogspot.com
twitter: @dtdelosh

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Monday, November 28, 2016

Tick Tick Tick -pssssst

PEEP SINGS ©Diana Ting Delosh
My spread for CBIG Illustrator Day
Ink, watercolor and digital
Notice my hand lettering?

November was a month with a lot of hustle and bustle: an illustrator Day, a first page review with a big important editor; a big portfolio review with an editor, an agent and a designer, egad! Topped off with Thanksgiving holiday! And now I feel like one of the big parade balloons being deflated. Tick, tick, tick... pssst. Feel like all the air has been knocked out of me. Note to self  - do not sign up for 3 events in a month with a BIG Holiday ever again!

So How did it all go?
• llustrator day went well. I need to do more of my hand lettering.

• My first page review was super! And it was super mainly because I was afraid my writing was too spare and it was an experimental piece. So to have her "get it" was absolutely SUPER. Need to go with my gut and just write!

• And my Big Review was 2 Mehs and 1 Yay. Sometimes it's just a crap shoot. And yes -do more Hand lettering. Hey, you can't win them all. It's all good info even if it's to know who not to send to.

So what are my plans for the immediate future? To follow up on all the events I did in November. Still have a few Thank you's to send out. To work on finishing all the things I started in 2016. Do MORE Hand Lettering! Try and wrap up as much as possible by December 31st.

In case you missed it:

Art rep, Nicole Tugeau of Tugeau2 reviewed 3 of my illustrations from my book dummy on Kathy Temean's Blog. Take a gander and read Take A Look Sunday - Diana Delosh  

My post over at Drawn To Picture Books - The Eleventh Month by Diana Ting Delosh.

I was recently interviewed by Dana Carey on the SUB IT CLUB. Take a peek and read  The Postcard Post: Diana Ting Delosh.

Illustration blog: dtdelosh.blogspot.com
twitter: @dtdelosh

Check out my shops:
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Saturday, November 5, 2016

INKTOBER2016: Inks 20 - 31

Whew -I survived INKTOBER2016!!! Yes! I  did 31 illustrations with various inky implements within the 31 days of October. What I learned from this challenge other than I enjoyed it immensely? Found that even though I do a lot of inking, that a lot of days I need to work on pencils or just Paint all day. Needless to say I did Inktober in clusters. The hardest part was posting/tweeting & blogging about it. Hence this blog post wrap up is a few days into November.

20 - Owl Sings © Diana Ting Delosh
Biro, ball point pen preliminary doodles for a project.

21 - Owl Character © Diana Ting Delosh
Biro, Character doodles for a project.
It's just as easy to do preliminary sketches and doodles with a biro as it is to do them with a pencil.

22 - Owl Sings © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen warm up.

23 - Leaves © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen warm up

24 - Hedgehog Bride © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen doodle
It's fun to do quick doodles with a fat brush pen and no underlying pencil sketch.

25 - Peep Sings © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen -Line art 

26 - Village in the woods © Diana Ting Delosh
Radiograph double zero point and some pencil left in for texture.

27 - Lady on the Train © Diana Ting Delosh
Biro - quick sketch on train.

28 - Man on the Train © Diana Ting Delosh
Biro - quick sketch on train.
The problem with sketching people on the train is that sooner or later they have to move or get off. It's also really hard to sketch on crowded trains.

29 - Another Owl Sings © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen -Line art
It's not deja vous numbers 20, 21, 22, and 29 are all related to the same project.

30 - Fall Squirrel © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen -just for fun

31 - Pumpkin Cat © Diana Ting Delosh
Brush pen - just for fun
And that's a wrap for INKTOBER2016! 
If you're interested in seeing the rest of my Inks click on: INKTOBER2016: Inks 1 - 9 and INKTOBER2016: Inks 10 - 19

In case you missed it:
My post on Drawn To Picture Books: The Eleventh Month by Diana Ting Delosh: It's that time to rally one last huge effort before times up. Tick... tick... tick...BOOM! It's November, the eleventh month and a f...
I was also recently interviewed by Dana Carey on the SUB IT CLUB. Take a peek and read   The Postcard Post: Diana Ting Delosh.

Web/Portfolio: dianadelosh.com
Twitter: @dtdelosh
Group Blog: D2PB
ThumbNailer a book of boxes for your creative process

Monday, October 24, 2016

INKTOBER2016: Inks 10 - 19

October is two thirds over, which means inktober is too. I'm finding the inking to be going well enough. I'm up to ink number 22. However the scanning or shooting and actually posting it on twitter, never mind then doing a blog recap of them is where I'm tripping up.

10 - Bear & Bunny are frightened of the ghosts in the forest - Biro Sketch
© Diana Ting Delosh

Ink no. 10: This Biro, ball point pen sketch is the sketch for my illustration for the SCBWI October Draw This prompt, FRIGHT. I will post about it in a later post.

11 - Cupcake - Brush Pen quickie © Diana Ting Delosh

12 - Weedy Bits © Diana Ting Delosh 

13 - Oak Tree © Diana Ting Delosh

14 - Scared Bear ©Diana Ting Delosh
Numbers 12 - 13 are some of the line art for the FRIGHT Illo based on the preliminary Biro Sketch number 10. Promise I'll be show the final color art soon on this blog but it may have to wait until after Inktober.

15 - Girl on the train - Biro Sketch
© Diana Ting Delosh

16 - Guy on the Train - Biro Sketch
© Diana Ting Delosh
Ball point pen sketches 15 & 16 were done on the train of actual people who of course had to move.

17 - When in doubt, draw a critter - Biro Sketch
© Diana Ting Delosh

18 - Side View of critter - Biro Sketch
© Diana Ting Delosh

19 - Back of Critter - Biro Sketch
Biro sketches 17 - 19 are more critter sketches for a character in a picture book idea I'm working on. Still not sure if this is going to be it. HM-m-m you may be seeing a few more assorted critters and beasties before October is over.

INKTOBER: doing 31 Inks in 31 days and sharing it on social media (my choice is Twitter) is definitely challenging. Even with my lowering the bar by including sketches as long as it's done with an ink bearing implement and saying 31 in 31 vs 1 ink per day for 31 days, is not easy. But I am finding a way to do it as part of my process vs an added activity. And being part of the community doing it is very enjoyable.

Web/Portfolio: dianadelosh.com
Twitter: @dtdelosh
Group Blog: D2PB
ThumbNailer a book of boxes for your creative process

Sunday, October 9, 2016

INKTOBER2016: Inks 1 - 9

INKTOBER: 31 inky illustrations in 31days. Posting on twitter with #inktober #inktober2016

Inktober 2016 started off on a weekend with houseguests and the new scanner had yet to arrive. SO I started late, on October 4, meaning I was already 4 days and 4 inks behind. While a part of me thought of not beginning because it was late, another part decided to just jump in. After all I've been thinking of starting a daily sketch habit. Might as well begin with Inktober! While some of the artists doing Inktober are doing themes, my rules will be very open: as long as the sketch or finished illustration had some ink involved I was counting it. Click on images to enlarge.
1 - Beast Biro Sketch, © DianaTing Delosh

2 - Beast BiroSketch, © Diana Ting Delosh

3 - Beast BiroSketch, © Diana Ting Delosh
Inks number 1 - 3 were quick Biro. ball point pen, sketches for a beastie character for a personal project. My current fave is the 3rd Rhino-Boy beast. On the other hand the 1st sketch has a vulnerable quality to him. Hm-m-m may have to do a few more beasties before I can make a decision on how/what this character will look like. 

4 - Fern Ink Line art detail, Micro Pens © Diana Ting Delosh

5 - Wildflowers Ink Line art detail, Radiograph Pens © Diana Ting Delosh

 Inks number 4 & 5 are details from 2 illustrations from an inky project on my drawing board that I can't show too much of - yet. Taking a page from my fellow illustrators when they're in this situation and just showing a DETAIL from the illustrations. 
6 - Tomato Biro Sketch © Diana Ting Delosh

I find drawing from life first thing in the morning to be very calming. A nice way to begin the day on a positive note.

7 - Bumble Bee, Micron Pen fun © Diana Ting Delosh
8 - Rhododendron, MicronPen Line art detail, © Diana Ting Delosh
9 - Morning Tea & Vitamins, Biro Sketch, © Diana Ting Delosh
Ta Dah! Nine inks in nine days! Think I'm getting the hang of making Inktober part of my daily ritual just like my morning mug of tea & vitamins. 

Web/Portfolio: dianadelosh.com
Twitter: @dtdelosh
Group Blog: D2PB

ThumbNailer a book of boxes for your creative process

Monday, September 26, 2016

2016 Illustration Promotion Pages

One of my favorite pet projects for my local illustrators group, CBIG is to put together the annual Illustration Directories, the COLOR and the BLACK & WHITE to showcase our member illustrators. And if I'm designing the things, I sure as hell going to make sure I have a promo page in both of them. Personally, I think it's a good practice to make your own promo page annually anyway.
2016 Black & White Promo Sheet
The challenge to designing a promo page is deciding which illustrations go on it. Feature one or multiple illos? Definitely only 2016 work. This may sound easy but some years if I'm working on hush, hush projects this could be tricky. I went with three images for my BLACK & WHITE page: an ink and wash, an adult coloring book line art style and a grayscale version of  a hand lettering piece.

2016 Color Promo Sheet
For my Color Promo Page I decided to keep it simple and only one image.

Why should you create a promo page or two? You can add the PDFs to your website for your potential clients to print out. (next on my to-do list) Hand out the print outs to Art Directors & editors you meet at conference one-on-ones or other opportunities. You can also e-mail them as an attachment or give them the link on your website. Share them on your social media sites etc.

YAY! My BOY was selected for the cover of the BLACK & WHITE directory by a vote by the CBIG membership.  Very honored to be amongst my talented colleagues: Stephanie Ruble, Sharon Holm, Mike Ciccotello.

Web/Portfolio: dianadelosh.com
Twitter: @dtdelosh
Group Blog: D2PB

ThumbNailer a book of boxes for your creative process

Monday, September 12, 2016

It's Illustration Self-Promotion time: Postcards

My original plans for this summer was to take a"vacation" away from kidlit art and work on my projects that had been put on the wa-a-a-ay back burner. After all I had just OD'd on kidlit prepping for the SCBWI NJ Conference and I couldn't think of another PB anything. HA!

Postcard for mailing: Front & Back of card
click to see bigger

But wait a moment, I had created a hand out for the  conference.  Seemed like a brilliant idea at the time BUT it meant that after the conference I didn't have a postcard I could just mail off. Drats! Now I'd have to create a postcard for mailing out. I knew which image I wanted to put on the front - my current Fave, Boy meets octopus, the illo that came out of the conference illustrator intensive. But what about the back? I  didn't want it to be too similar to my conference hand out. My solution - create art to to put the front illustration in context. I had always thought of the front illo as a dream or fanstasy scene. Hence my illo of a boy in bed with a book and his cat for the back of card. If you look closely at the book you can read a bit of the title "Twas... It's a nod to the illustrator intensive brief to illustrate a line from Lewis Carroll's poem, Jabberwocky, which begins, "Twas brillag and the slithy toves..."

Conference handout Front & Back of card
click to see bigger

Snoopy -my studio guest.
Ahem - helping me update my mailing labels.

About the No Kid Lit Art Vacation and those back burner projects? Well they've moved up a bit on the burners and are simmering nicely. A few have even come to a boil.  You can peek at a few on my ArtHaresWares blog. There's a lot more but they're not ready to share yet.

My posts on the D2PB Blog In case you missed them:
• What I learned when I sprained my ankle: Celebrate the Small Steps
• My NJ SCBWI Conference illustrations: NJ SCBWI 2016 Aproaches

Web/Portfolio: dianadelosh.com
Twitter: @dtdelosh
Group Blog: D2PB

Sunday, August 28, 2016

The Beauty of Deadlines - D2PB

Embrace the deadline! Yes. They're not all bad. They force you to do things. Case in point: Me without a deadline, I was all loosey goosey and never got around to posting this post. Or posting any post for awhile on this blog. I for one definitely need a deadline even if it's a self imposed soft deadline that I know I can ignore with no ill effects. Just keeps me all fired up to finish stuff. Just in case you missed it, over at the D2PB group blog I wrote a post on the motivating effects of deadlines. Here's the link if you want to take a gander.

 Drawn To Picture Books: The Beauty of Deadlines - Diana Ting Delosh: I'm always amazed at what I can accomplish with a deadline breathing down my neck. It doesn't matter if the deadline is a sale for ...
ZEN RAM © Diana Ting Delosh
Ink, Watercolor, digital

OR just take it from the Ram. Get your Zen mode on and embrace your deadline.