Illustration Friday - Voice

acrylic, lithochrome, pitt pens & watercolor
Here is something I was playing with that just happens to fit today's Illustration Friday challenge, "Voice"

Pop on over to IF to share your inspired creations or just see what everyone else is up to.

And if you are in the Tampa, FL area this weekend, head downtown for the 44th annual Gasparilla Festival of the Arts! You'll be glad you did - it is consistently a good show with a colorful mix of newbies and seasoned artists.


Is Art Worth A Life?

"Capt. James J. Rorimer, in cap, a future director of the Metropolitan Museum,
leading an art recovery team in Germany, around 1945."
quote from NY TImes & photo borrowed from NY Times  & Laurel Publishing

6:30 pm Tonight at the Tampa Theatre, author Robert M. Edsel (Monuments Men, Rescuing DaVinci) will be tackling this question. The event is free to the public and presented by University of South Florida College of Arts & Sciences. It will probably be packed due to the recent Clooney movie, so you might want to get there early. (By the way, I've been told that parking north of Kennedy Blvd. in downtown Tampa is free after 6 p.m.)

Tampa Theatre (taken by me last summer)

I haven't been to see the MM movie yet, but really enjoyed Mr. Edsel's self published 2006 book, which I picked up after reading this engrossing review in The New York Times. If you have a minute and want to know a bit more about the author & his first book, pop over to the link. It is a good quick read. For more info visit the official website: http://www.monumentsmen.com/

DaVinci's Lady With An Ermine
was stolen by the Nazis & rescued by the Allies

Presented with 100 slides and anecdotes about the real Monuments Men, as well as discussing the making of the documentary "The Rape of Europa" this should be a very interesting evening. I've been looking forward to this event for a while ... but not sure yet what the evening holds at my house. If I make it, I'll pop back and let you know how it goes. If you go, I'd love it if you'd stop by here and share your thoughts.


Illustration Friday - Space

Do you play on Illustration Friday? Each week there is a new prompt to get your creative juices flowing. The ideas are always coming, but sometimes I run short on time. Thankfully you can submit at any point the following week... so here I am :)

Feeling Spacey? Post your interpretation & link up over at IllustrationFriday.com! Be sure to leave a note here so I can pop over and check out your fun spin on the prompt.

And if the prompt isn't enough - here is an earworm to get you started. It was the 1st thing I thought of when I caught wind of this week's challenge:


AttrAction on the Today Show

Attraction from R&R Games

If you've peeked in on this blog before, you may have caught a few references to my day job. I am lucky to work for a company that is all about play! 

I'm pretty excited to share that one of our games, AttrAction, was featured on the Today Show last Monday. Meredith Sinclair (of MeredithPlays.com) brought some of her favorite finds from the 2014 International Toy Fair to the program. I am having trouble embedding the video clip, but if you click here it will open in a new window. Our game is introduced at the 2 minute mark.

AttrAction is a fun fast-paced game that is super easy to learn and play. The original version shown above is available through our website (rnrgames.com) and at assorted toy/game shops. If you follow this link there is a store locator where you can enter your zip code to see if it is found nearby. Another cute version, Hearts of AttrAction (all of the magnets are shaped like hearts), will be available soon.


Beck: Waking Light for Musical Monday

I'm a fan of Beck's 2002 album Sea Change and loving his upcoming sequel, Morning Phase. If you like moody ambient stuff, this one is for you too. Moon Phase releases on the 25th but you can listen to the whole album now in a few spots around the web, including over at NPR if you click here.

What's on your playlist today? Looking for something new or just want to strut your stuff? Pop on over to XmasDolly and jump aboard the weekly Musical Monday blog hop.


Winner of Art Card Random Drawing

Howdy! How have you been?

I'm a few days behind on Thursday's random drawing. Sorry about that! Unusually bogged down this week between getting everyone off to the NY Toy Fair (esp. tricky with all the weather woes) and having the kiddo home from school with a nasty bug. 

Life is now back to it's normal level of chaos, so on with the show!

The latest lucky winner takes home their choice of ACEO (Art card Editions & Originals) from my etsy shop. The mini art print measures 2.5" x 3.5" however I will include a free mat if desired. The mat will allow it to fit in a standard 5" x 7" frame.

And the winner is.....

Congratulations, Ruth! If you follow this link to the ACEO section of my online shop, pick a fave and then email me your selection & address I will send your prize out this week.

Thank you to the folks who commented & entered this random drawing. I'll post another giveaway soon (just have to decide what & when) so be sure to pop back for a chance to take home some goodies.

Best wishes for a wonderful week!


Happy Birthday, Jules Verne! Plus Leviathan Tattoos & The Coolest Wheelchair

Happy Birthday, Jules Verne! One of the Fathers of science fiction, he was born 186 years ago. Seems like a good day to share this wooden mannequin hand I "tattooed" last summer for a steampunk undersea-themed cabinet of curiosities.

"The Monster did exist, and he had sworn to rid the seas of it." - from Mr. Verne's book Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea

Click Here if you want to see some "before" photos. In that post, images were burned in and the coloring had just started. There are also a few pics of the little warrior mermaid I was playing with for the same art call. 

In 2013 Bruce Rosenbaum ( from Modvic) put out a request for interesting objects to fill a cabinet of curiosities. This cabinet was to anchor a steamy undersea bedroom that some incredibly talented folks were creating. This room was an imaginative young man's request to the Make A Wish Foundation. 

image courtesy of Modvic

Another cool element of this undersea undertaking is The SteamAble Wheelchair. Check it out at Modvic.com. The creators are actively seeking funds to make this wonderful chair a reality for "... the recipient Kryon, the 14 year old boy who Muscular Dystophy who inspired this project." There are many more details and a video on their Indie Go Go page where folks can also make donations.


Illustration Friday - prehistoric

Super fun challenge from IF today = 'prehistoric'! 

Don't know if I'll have time to draw this week (busy prepping for one of our big trade shows, the NY Toy Fair), so I took a few minutes of precious TGIF time to dig up & play with a dusty ole negative.... yes, from the ancient days of *gasp* film.

However I don't think IF accepts photos, so I won't bother submitting. But, hey, if you feel inspired to create: (1) share your antediluvian adventures online (2) link up to illustrationfriday.com & (3) be sure to tell me about it so I can check your primeval self out.

Before you leap back into the future, be sure to comment below. It'll get your name into the hat for my next random drawing. On 2/13 one winner picks their fave ACEO  (mini art print) from my etsy shop,Artsnark's Artifacts, to add to their collection.


Thirsty Roses

The cold snap has been chased a way by days of rain.

Not sure who is happier to see the sun, the kids or the plants.

The roses are bursting 

and I'm playing with my phone's photos

while waiting for the latest sun-shower to pass by.

Hope you are having a creative day! For more pics visit me on Instagram = http://Instagram.com/Artsnark