There’s a hole in my heart where my dog used to be.

Le Grand Portefeuille, Pet Portraits

Lily Lemon Carney, beloved furry daughter, protector, snuggler extraordinaire.

We had to tearfully say goodbye to a member of our family recently. Lily was our 12 year-old pit bull mix. She was the most empathetic, nurturing and beautiful creature I had the privilege of knowing.

We called her “Nurse Lily” because she could sense when you were sick or sad, and would curl up next to you, or if there was no room for curling up, put her head in your lap. As a puppy, she stayed in bed with me (except for potty breaks) when I got a bad case of food poisoning. When a migraine would hit, she would be curled into my side in the darkest room of the house. When my husband had shingles, she stayed on the floor by the couch, as he was in too much pain to snuggle. (She knew.) And when I was pregnant, she was my protector. If any person or dog was too exuberant, she strategically placed herself between them and me. When we brought our newborn daughter home from the hospital, Lily moved wherever the basinet was, so she could lay at the base of it, and “protect” Rosalee. Bandit was “her” puppy…she picked him out at the doggy adoption day. She cleaned his face and put up with his silliness. Lily let him get away with all sorts of nonsense. Now Bandit is five and misses his adopted mother.

We all miss her so much. She has, of course, popped up in my work over the years, my first furry muse. I found that I needed to draw her again. I hope it does her justice.

Lily Lemon Carney, beloved dog, Nancy Lemon ©2016

Painting your Muse

Illustrating Books

 

Paint the Muse, illustration by Nancy Lemon Carney ©2015 watercolor, ink on paperHere we are with more artistic expression via Muse the dog.  He cuts a dashing figure, reminiscent of Napoleon, or Javert from Les Miserables.  I ask you, if your dog stood still clad in old-timey maritime costume, wouldn’t you also feel inspired to paint?

Watercolor, cool new Derwent Inktense pencils, all on paper

Draw This! “Muse”

Inspiration, Le Grand Portefeuille

Muse, Draw This, SCBWI Nancy Lemon Carney ©2015

Every month, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators issues a prompt word for their online illustrator gallery.  The word for September is “Muse”.  My dogs have always been a great inspiration for me, so here we are.  Who (or what) is your muse?

Edward the Rabbity Argyle Enthusiast

Le Grand Portefeuille

EdwardRabbitWP

Edward is so very right; argyle is the way to go if you must wear socks.  Thus continues the thread of animals and clothes…or, fashionable animals.

The original is available (9″x12″ gouache, pen and ink on watercolor paper).

Prints can be found here, along with shirts and things.

Caprine King and Queen

November Simplicity

kingandqueenGoatsWP

Here is a color study for a finished piece I am working on.  Today I am thankful for great friends who send me lots of pictures of goats.  (I’m lookin’ at you, Bec M.)  This was drawn into my little 5-1/2″ square sketchbook while gazing at these fine specimens in my iPhone.  Thank goodness for friends who visit zoos!

ALSO, click the orange link to get FREE WORLDWIDE SHIPPING and $5.oo off in my Society6 shop through November 9th!

Simple things: November 4th

November Simplicity, Sketchbook

giraffeTeaPotWP

I actually painted this last night at the kitchen table, with a cup of chamomile. It was a nice realization that hit me there at the 11th hour…today is election day, and I haven’t seen many election campaign commercials at all.  Why is this?  This is due to painting and drawing at the end of the day rather than watching television.  (Also, when we watch tv, it is often pre-recorded, so we zip past all the annoying commercials.)  But really, I haven’t been taking in a lot of the idiot box lately.  (I have been staring a bit too much at the idiot screen I carry with me at all times…iDiot?)

I look at this tea pot on the stove all the time and I’ve never painted it.  It’s done in my sketchbook with a variety of materials.  Thank you, mom, for the wonderfully friendly tea pot.

Surfer Witch

Love letter to October

surferWitchWP

To continue my love letter to October, here is a “surfer witch”.  I used a picture of a girl surfing as a “model” for this little painting.  Originally I was hoping to post a picture a day for October, but life has a funny habit of getting in the way of best laid plans.  Therefore, I will be posting October-themed art this month, as much as I can on a schedule such as mine!  I hope you enjoy my “love letter to October.”  It’s a great feeling time of year!