A New Illustration

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It’s a new illustration I’m working on… still a black and white version, I’ve just scanned the pen and ink drawing from my sketch book to my computer. I’m just starting to do the colors in photoshop, another colorful dreamy castle is being built up!

Meet Mr. Fox

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Meet Mr. Fox with Redy and Bluey! The forest is vast and full of adventure in creative inspiration for people such as myself. You can see from my illustration here clear incentive of the trees, rivers, meadow, and stones. I wish I could see more of the color spectrum like other animals and creatures can, just imagine how much we are missing out on! The forest is a great inspiration for me, and so are the lovely and adorable animals and spirits living in!

Oh I almost forgot to mention, that my favorite song about fox is “What does the fox say” It’s such an insane song! Just cannot stop listening to it time and time again! 🙂

What inspires you most from life? Is it, nature or a book/movie or someone in your daily life even? Let me know!

Free HD Desktop Wallpaper 1280x800px

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Today I’d like to share with you one of my original paintings – Sunrise. It was from a poetry collection I illustrated for about 2 years ago. I love the island settings of the poems and the love story between the characters. Last time when I saw a beautiful sunrise like this was in Tybee Island, I do miss the happy time there!

I’ve made this painting to a Free HD Desktop Wallpaper 1280x800px! Download it from the link here!

Ready To Hang!

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We have new products available now! Set of 2, 8×10 Finished Panels, Ready To Hang, Nursery Wall Arts, Perfect for Home Decor and Kids Room Decor!

Professional smooth fine art archival paper mounted on finished panel. Signed by artist on both the front and back. Most importantly, they are Ready-To-Hang: All you need is “Command Mounting Strips”!

More original illustrations and paintings on my Etsy store, and don’t forget the 20% off coupon SUMMER20! Happy Summer! 🙂

 

Book Review | The Apple Pie That Papa Baked by Lauren Thompson

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A very delightful and sweet story. The Apple pie – a sweet treat that father prepares for his daughter, tells us the sweetest love in this big world. Thompson tells the story in a cumulative form, and the fascinating part is that the cumulative form goes backwards yet Bean’s illustrations go forward in time visually. The text begins with the apples (“These are the apples, juicy and red, that went in the pie, warm and sweet, that Papa baked”) and then moves on to the tree that grew the fruit, its roots, the rain, the clouds, the sky, the sun, and finally the world (“blooming with life”).  You see Papa picking apples, baking the pie, and coming with his daughter for a picnic under that very apple tree.

Bean’s fine folk-style illustrations were drawn in black, brown yellow and a bit red, the simple palette wonderfully complement this emotional tale. Colors help set the mood of each spread, and the scribbly style lends the illustrations a slightly retro feel. In the ending while the text goes far and far to encompass the whole world, the illustrations focus down and down onto the apple pie shared by father and daughter in a homey setting, leading the story to its sweet conclusion. A delightful and engaging read, a charming and sweet story for little ones and parents.

Book Review | The Sound of Colors by Jimmy Liao- A Journey of Imagination

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“Color of Sounds” tells a story of a blind young girl who ventures on a subway trip using her imagination to take herself and readers on a journey.  “I have a journey to go on. There are some thing I need to find.” (from the book) It starts out slowly. She wonders the places the trains might take her and the passengers. She exits the stations where the field full of the golden leaves; She flies with clouds in different shapes and colors; She follows a line of elephants upstairs and downstairs; She is lonely on those dark nights or rainy days; She sits in a library with orange sunset glowing through the window; She lies on the back of a whale and listens to the sound of breeze; At last she returns home to find the light she’s looking for, “in my heart”. The final image is of the girl entering a home that has vibrant stained glass walls of enormous colors, images, and comforts.

The story is not only about a blind girl’s experience or imagination, it’s more of a metaphor of adult life. The light glowing in heart is what makes life bright. To keep a good spirit and always think positively. There is no “wrong train” since whichever train could bring us to a new place, there is no “wrong stop” since whichever place could make us comfort. To take trains to myriad stops metaphorizes the decisions and options in real life, we could get anxieted and stressed of unknown steps next, or become fearful of not achieving what we are looking for initially. But we do have other options, to keep eyes and heart open for our surroundings, we could still enjoy the whole journey, and even find something more meaning and enjoyable during this process.

While the book labels as children’s book, it may be read at many levels, and actually I feel adults can understand deeper. The watercolor style and the details of every single page simultaneously present many emotions and moods, such as fear, comfort, solitude, hope, wonder. The heroine is independent and strong, her journey highlights the light glowing in heart and ignites thought of possibility and transcendance when facing difficulties and changes.

A New Book

Here’s a sneak peek at what I am currently working on.  A new book!

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It’s another book from “Redy and Bluey” series, and it’s a wordless picture book!

I’m a big fan of wordless picture books, to name several of my favorites, Journey by Aaron Becker , Tuesday by David Wiesner,  The Lion & the Mouse by Jerry PinkneyRainstorm by Barbara Lehman Though these wordless picture books tell different stories, they share one thing in common – full of imagination! The illustrations themselves lead readers through and open people’s mind. Sometimes I even feel they are more suitable for adults – kids might find fun and enjoyable to flip through those beautiful pages, but adults can really admire the phrase and the imaginary world built up by only illustrations.

Feel free to share with me your favorites wordless picture books!

A gift for you! FREE Download

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Happy summer my dear friends!!

I made this gift tags for you. It’s from my “Redy and Bluey” collection. You can download it here FREE, Just click on the image and then right click, save. Print it, cut it, add a ribbon, add to your gifts, it’s yours! You can print it as many times as you like. It looks great on card stock or adhesive paper. I left room for you to cut it with decorative scissors or make the corners round, anything you like…

“Redy and Bluey” is a collection I’m working on lately. The little two creatures will have books, paintings, stories and animations… Since I was a kid I always imagined that I had some secret little friends like them, who could be around with me in everyday life, listen to me and give me ideas and advice. It just felt so unique and special. I’m glad finally I’m making it come true 😉

Here are more of their stories and the world they are living in, do you want to start an adventure journey with Redy and Blue?

Book Review | Cat and Rat: The Legend of the Chinese Zodiac by Ed Young – An Interesting Entertaining Story

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This beautifully illustrated children’s book introduces us the interesting entertaining story behind Chinese zodiac. In old times, cat and rat are great friends. One day the Emperor announces a contest, a race for all the animals. The first 12 winners cross the finish line will have a year named in their honor. The contest is through mountains and fields, forest and rivers. Rat and Cat, the best of friends, ask the water buffalo to carry them across the river. However, when it’s about to reach the finish line, rather than holding together tightly, Rat pushes Cat into the water and jumps off the buffalo’s back, coming in first. This marvelous tale reveals why, to this very day, Cat and Rat are enemies and why Cat is not one of the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac.

Following the story, Ed Young offers “Cultural Notes” and a chart of signs that help the reader understand the characteristics of the 12 animals described in the book. It is a cultural educational book especially for those who enjoys myths from around the world. It is very well presented by a soft gentle abstract look, Young’s charcoal and pastel drawings are dramatic and striking. The darkness of color and the depth of texture conveys a unique look in children’s literature.