Friday, February 28, 2020

Character Reference.

To my dearest friends and followers,

This week I have been working on writing a quick reference of the fairy creatures from my book. 
The purpose is to have it in the front of the book to prevent confusion as each of the characters are introduced in the story. This idea was presented to me by one of my beta readers, so I considered it, and now I also believe it would be helpful, not to mention fun. Having the reference at the front of the book sort of reminds me of the rhymes at the beginning of the books from The Spiderwick Chronicles.

I put these in order as they appear in the story, with the main character, Hollyhocks, being a sprite.
I intend to edit it more, but this is the first rough draft:

These tiny human-like fairies have wings protruding from their backs. Sprites are kind-hearted beings who tend to avoid contact with humans. They are autumn fairies who change the leaves by painting grand fiery colors throughout nature. Sprites do not wear clothing.

These tiny human-like fairies do not have wings, but they can run extremely fast. They have unique features, such as pointed ears and large wide-set eyes. Pixies possess magic, yet they are mischievous beings who delight in causing turmoil amongst humans, such as taking things that don't belong to them or causing humans to forget where they are. Legend has it that pixies are not born of parents, but are created from the souls of humans who died as children. Pixies are commonly seen using strands of grass for clothing.

These tiny insect-like fairies are flower fairies. They like to live in fields of wildflowers or in people's gardens. They tend to the flowers and care for them. They also wear flower petals for clothing. Pillywiggins are spring fairies and hibernate during the winter. Since they do not have wings of their own, they like to have mounts, such as bumble bees, butterflies, or dragonflies. Something unique about these fairies is they have the ability to hear humans call them from far away. They also have the ability to "shift", meaning they can allow themselves to be seen or to not be seen by human eyes.

Small dwarf-like creatures who are typically in a bad mood. Though they are not fond of humans, they enjoy visiting people's home during the night. They delight in doing household chores, from dusting and sweeping, to darning socks. The only thing they take in return for payment is food.

Daughters of the Earth (Mother Nature). They are tree spirits. They are mostly peaceful creatures, with a beautiful language long since forgotten by man. Dryad's can leave their tree, but only for a short time before the dryad and tree would die. Dryad's are hard to see, but they can sometimes be heard in the wind to those who are listening.

Fairy Ring:
A ring of mushrooms that grows in a circle is known as a fairy ring. It is believed to be pixie magic. Every year, on the first full moon after the vernal equinox, the pixies have a grand dance to celebrate the new season. Their tiny footsteps combined with their magic creates the fairy ring - a portal to another world. If a human were to step inside a fairy ring, they would cease to exist in the world they know, but would be transported deep into the fairy realm forever.

The spirit of a woman who was a professional mourner. Because of her life of lies, in the afterlife she is condemned to mourn for royal family members whose lives have been lost. It is said that the spirit will sometimes accompany the souls of the deceased to the other side.

**Please keep in mind, these are not descriptions that match what folklore says about these creatures, but are the descriptions that match what the world I created says about them.

Thank you so much for reading!! I would love to hear from you and what your thoughts are about the descriptions. I have noticed that the comment section hasn't been functioning properly, so I'll leave a link for the Contact Me tab if you'd like to reach out that way.

Thank you again,

Yours truly,

Friday, February 21, 2020

Working on Beautiful Faces.

To my dearest friends and followers,

I hope this day finds you well. It's been a roller coaster of a week for me, however I don't intent to post about it. Thoughts and prayers are appreciated though. <3

Despite everything going on, I have spent several hours playing with watercolor and trying my hand at different things. Last week I shared that I was just playing with the color and making backgrounds with the intent of creating a cover for my upcoming novel.

This week, my husband and I also made a trip to the art store and picked up several supplies. I'm excited to try them all out!! As shown in the picture, we got watercolor paper, paper tape, an empty pallet that I have added some colors to, a portable cup for water, a water brush pen, a tube to hold paint brushes, and some paint brushes. I wanted to be able to use my watercolor on the go. I'm so used to color pencils and how easy they are to use at home or otherwise, but the watercolor was a bit tricky. That's the main reason for most of the items we got. The Arches watercolor paper is for when I actually create the book cover. For now, I'm still working in a watercolor journal.

I have also started going through the book "Beautiful Faces" by Jane Davenport. I started by practicing a face from her book in one of my journals. I have since drawn two faces with graphite sticks and color pencil on top of watercolor. They're definitely more "finished" than the practice drawing I did first. I think they're turning out pretty well. They're not what I want, but they're getting there.

In the end, I want my own work to be heavily influenced/inspired by Jane Davenport and Toni Burt, yet I still want it to reflect my own style. The drawings I did this week were poor attempts to make exact copies of Jane's style though.

I'm really enjoying this study of her work. I'm loving the watercolor and the faces are coming along. It's a very different style from what I typically do, but it also holds something whimsical about it, which is very much in my realm. The wide set eyes and small, but long noses really stand out to me in her work. They're not natural at all, but they're so eye-catching for all the right reasons.

I'll keep you posted with what I'm learning and what I'll be working on next. Thank you so much for reading!!

Yours truly,

Friday, February 14, 2020

Painting With Watercolor.

A page from the book Beautiful Faces
I'm working on designing my book cover!!
My Messy Creative Space
My Jane Davenport Art Supplies

To my dearest friends and followers,

I finished going through the manuscripts from my beta readers last Sunday!! I finished several days ahead of schedule, which I was pretty excited about. Next, I'm having another set of eyes (my husband) read through the new revised version. Still a long way to go, but I feel like I can see that light at the end of the tunnel.

Once I've worked on a few other projects related to finished my book for publication, I'll be reading through the manuscript again to really polish it up.
However, this week has been all about watercolor.
It's a medium that I am not super familiar with. I use mostly pencils, color pencils, pens, and on occasion, charcoal. Watercolor is something I used to see my sister use a lot, but I wasn't really one to take part in it. Early last year, I was gifted a watercolor set that I used maybe twice or three times. It was a set that I picked out, though I didn't really take the time to play around with it and learn how to use it.

That has changed though! I have been wanting to try my hand at it due to being inspired by artists Toni Burt and Jane Davenport and being encouraged by my husband.
I have painted several different pieces, mostly playing with colored backgrounds and just getting used to the feel of the brush in my hand and how the paint reacts with itself. I have been looking through the book Beautiful Faces for color pallet inspirations. I've actually been working in a Jane Davenport watercolor journal I bought.

I've been really enjoying painting. I find it so relaxing. It's also very inviting (at least to me). When I use color pencils, I'm like, leave me alone, I'm drawing. But when I use watercolor, I'm like, come paint with me! 
I eventually want to buy large sheets of watercolor paper to try painting on a larger surface. I've also been getting a feel for the types of brushes I like and don't like and thinking about some that I'd like to get, since I've just been using a cheap "starter set" of brushes I got at an art store.
Next week I want to focus on drawing faces.

It is my intention to design my book cover with a watercolor background with the face of my protagonist, Hollyhocks, on top of that. We'll see how it goes...

Yours truly,

Friday, February 7, 2020

Writing Through The Week.

To my dearest friends and followers,

First and foremost, thank you for taking the time to read this.
I hope all of you had an amazing week!!

Mine was pretty decent. I've been to Barnes & Noble twice this week, got 4 new books, and have already devoured one of those books.

Yesterday I found myself in a cute little shop called Handmade Market. It was really quaint, stocked with enamel pins, small purses, adult and child sized aprons, little decorative pillows, jewelry, and other trinkets. One thing I got there was a pair of fingerless gloves!! They are really cute and comfy and perfect for chilly hands that love late-night writing.

Something I learned about this week is an app called Libby. It's a great app for book-lovers!! Some of you might already know what it is, but I just learned about it from a friend. It's essentially like audible, but it's free!! I don't usually like audiobooks, but I started using audible last month mainly because a book club account on Youtube that I was a part of was removed and I wanted to feel like I wasn't reading alone. XD
Anyhow, Libby is like an online library. You have to have a library card and then you can stream or download audiobooks AND ebooks. I'm not sure how it all works because I've just downloaded the app myself, but I'm excited to try it out.

On another note, as I said in my post last week, I received all my manuscripts back from my beta readers. I began working through those and I am editing my book accordingly!!
It's been going really well. I gave myself 12 days to work through 36 chapters (it wasn't until later that I realized my book actually has 39 chapters...but I'll make it work XD).
Currently I am finished with the first 23 chapters and I have yet to work on any today. So basically, I am ahead of schedule!! In just a few days, I'll be finished going through my book!! AHHHHHHH!!

I'll probably give it another go-over, and I still have a few other things I need to work on before publishing...

Yours truly,

Handmade Market