InkTober Day 1- Lady Aurelia

I’ve been waiting to introduce my characters to you guys for so long! I’m so excited to have you all meet them and be part of their story! I will upload the videos here also and give a little back story to them when I do. Some of my videos won’t have voice-overs and that’s for two reasons. Time and purpose. Editing takes a long time with just video and music but adding in voice makes it harder because of mistakes and background noise, etc. And not all of my drawings this month will have a significant background story. I did sketch half of this months drawings in advance, and some of the drawings are just elements that are relevant to the main characters and don’t need any explanation.

So I hope you’ll follow my posts on a here, Instagram, twitter, and YouTube to see all the inkings! And if you’re participating in InkTober, good luck and let me know how you’re doing!

One of this months ink drawings will be a digital download for my patrons on Patreon ‘Wallpaper’ reward tier. If you would like to support and get a reward, just head to my Patreon page!

RIP Camera (you annoying piece of….)

So I decided it would be a great idea to record today’s YouTube video this morning. I am fully aware of my equipment’s age and lag, not to mention the new slower speed of WIFI I now have in my thanks for being in the middle of farm lands. Even with all of that plus set up time for the camera and art supplies needed for the video, I still thought to myself, ‘what the heck’. Well, that’s just what I got. Heck.

Not only did it take me forever to get the makeshift tripod to stabilize, I also had a time with the paints. Once I got through that, I took my literal 10 year old digital camera off the charger and began recording. It took me roughly 2 hours to complete the painting, I sketched it out the night before to save me time, and I took a look at my camera. I noticed the battery was already dying so I saved the file and put it on the charger for 30 minutes.

I went back to take a look at the camera and use it one more time to film the end result painting and right before eyes are the words ‘corrupted file error’. What in the world am I supposed to do with that. And I even put the memory card into my computer and nothing showed up. Nothing. I was told to reformat my card, meaning that everything on it needs to be deleted.

Oh I know what you are thinking, my husband probably saved the day with a cup of coffee for me and what you are about to see i another ‘Cup of Coffee for today‘ comic.  But that didn’t happen either. He was busy being super dad outside with the kids after making their lunch.

I am not going to lie, I felt terrible. Utterly disappointed. I couldn’t believe it was happening and I really just wanted to cry. The picture came out nicely, which I posted below, but I have been working my butt off to keep up with a YouTube posting and it just wasn’t the time for it. Of course, when is there a really good time for everything to simply fall into the toilet?

So now I am working on my kickstarter campaign a little bit faster to help me with a project I have and to get some extra money for better equipment. I will post all of the details for it when its nice and polished! In the mean time, enjoy today’s beautiful painting that had a botched video recording!

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Maybe I should just go and color in my own coloring book!

Today’s cup of coffee – Too early

The night before I had not slept well at all. Constantly struggling to get comfortable with my 8 month pregnant belly and my 4 year old kept finding her way in my bed. So when I finally woke up that morning it was, of course, before everyone else woke up. I decided to get up and make breakfast for the family.

I walked downstairs and was greeted by two large dogs who were still getting the sleep from their bones. I let them outside to use the bathroom, gave them fresh water and food, and washed my hands. I looked in the fridge to see what I could make quickly and enough of so I didn’t have to spend my first 2 hours of my day cooking for ever growing hungry children. I decided the 3 dozen eggs I had would suffice for cheesy scrabbled eggs.

I grabbed the non stick pan, butter, cheese and eggs and got to cooking. Once the butter began to melt I started cracking the eggs. I got about three eggs in when I realized that the 4th and 5th eggs were in the trash and the shells were in the pan. Normal and more aware people would scoop out the shells and continue on with cooking. Not me. I stared at the pan for an unnecessary amount of time before turning the stove off and moving the pan off the burner.

Wishing my husband were awake to brew the coffee, I walked to the coffee pot and made it myself (poor poor me). I poured myself a nice hot cup of caramel flavored coffee and finished it before addressing the problem in the pan.

For your own piece of mind, I did get all the shells out of the pan and proceeded to make a successful breakfast before someone came downstairs.

For this comic I decided to make a video of me coloring the comic page

Here are some newer videos of mine that I have uploaded. Stop by my channel to see more videos and subscribe to my channel and like my videos

Today’s cup of coffee – In Tune

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Recently I found my sketchbook from last year and started thumbing through it. I came across some old character drawings I did and thought it would really fun to do the ‘Draw this again’ challenge where you take an old drawing and redo it to see the difference in your skill or just to make some changes. The character I chose was one I created when I first got my markers but instead of using markers again, I chose to use watercolor and ink (a technique I love to use).

I decided to film this challenge for my YouTube channel. I also used a much larger paper because I have always preferred to draw bigger and sketch smaller. I charged my very old camera, about a 10 year old by the way, and started recording. I was able to get a the base of the picture and the inking done before it died. Usually, I can predict when it will die so I can stop the drawing and charge it up again. But, from what I can assume, the battery is nearing its end in general so it died before I could realize it, thus sending my pregnant and emotional self spiraling down in a pit of anger.

(Side note- This kind of frustration, that happens more often than it should, could easily be avoided if I just upgraded my camera equipment. This is something I am working towards.)

Through low angry rumblings under my breath, kids giggling at me while I try not to throw the camera through the window, I plug in my camera to the charger and sit and stew in front of my unfinished piece, staring at it, feeling as though I won’t finish. I hear a small thud on my table and I look over to see a fresh cup of coffee and my husband just setting it down and walking away quietly, as to not further irritate his dragon of a wife.

The smell overcame me. I grabbed the cup and took a long sip. It was so refreshing on so many levels. Thankfully, I started to ease up and take a few extra deep breaths. I looked out of the window and saw that my husband went on the back porch to lay out and converse with the kids. My full on irritability had turned into a mild annoyance and I got up and went to sit and talk with everybody. After all, what was staring at an unfinished piece of artwork work and watching a slow blinking blue light on a dying camera going to do for me?

I was able to pull it off the charger and finish recording the last little bit I had left. If you want to take a look, watch below or visit my channel to see that and other drawing challenges. And remember, while you are watching it, that a simple cup of coffee and gesture of love helped to finish that art piece. 🙂

Today’s cup of coffee – Muse

Today I really noticed something about my husband. For as long as I can remember, he will randomly bring me a cup of coffee or tea. I don’t know what really prompts him to do it. Maybe he is making himself a cup and he ends up making one for me so I don’t drink his! No matter the reason, he always brings it to me at the right moment.

I wanted to work on some sketches to motivate myself to post something this evening. I decided to go to our bed and prop up with some pillows and work there. Being almost 8 months pregnant makes it a bit difficult to find any other comfortable spot in the house for me to be right now.

Anyhow, I wasn’t really working on anything in particular when I heard my husband coming up the stairs. He walked in with two cups of coffee and a kiss for my forehead. He then started rambling on about finances, stocks, assets, liabilities, etc. No, he doesn’t work in finance, but he is reading ‘Rich dad, Poor dad’ by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Letcher, so he is kindly informing me of all this new and insightful information he has learned, even though half of its going right over my head right now. Another down side to me being pregnant- concentration skills worsen each trimester.

As he was talking and while I really was trying to focus on every word he was saying, I started to realize that I have a hot cup of coffee in my hand and I didn’t ask for it. I watched him walk around our room, still talking, and putting clothes away, helping the toddler climb onto the bed and drinking his coffee. He wasn’t skipping a beat. I randomly inserted myself in the middle of his sentence to say ‘thank you’, to which he replied ‘of course, honey’. He continued on until chaos broke out among our older kids and he walked out to check on them.

I remained on the bed with our little toddler and my coffee. She was looking in my sketchbook while I kept coming back to the coffee. While it isn’t the first time I realize him doing that for me, it is the first time I really put some thought into the kind of husband he tries to be. Little gestures like this are just what I need to feel important in his life. He doesn’t have to do this for me, but he wants to and that’s amazing. So naturally, it has inspired to today’s and possibly a series of future posts about my random cups of coffee.

Thank you to my husband for the vanilla flavored caffeinated boost that has long since wore off but the love still lingers on. You are the best.

*Be sure to check out my latest YouTube drawing of the a wildflower coloring page!

*Want to join in on the fun and get me a cup of coffee as well? Head over to the donation tab to find out how you can show some love and support

*My coloring books are still available on Amazon!

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My husband got me floated

If you are familiar with The 100 which is a show based on a novel series about the surviving human race who live on a space ship, then you will get the reference I used for the title. For those that don’t, getting floated is a form of capital punishment where someone is executed by being sucked out of the ship into space. Fortunately, that wasn’t the case for me and instead ‘being floated’ for me meant something that took place in a spa.

There is a type of relaxation method available called ‘floating’. Its a big enclosed tank that’s halfway filled with extremely salted water. Before stepping in, you have to shower and wash your body and hair with bastille soap, pat our body dry, make sure your hair isn’t dripping and then proceed into the tank. With the lights off, excepting a salt lamp, you step inside and shut the door.

Submerged in complete darkness and salted water, I lay back and allow the dense water keep me afloat. The water creeps in close to the corners of my eyes, but doesn’t touch them. My feet and hands are suspended. With the air being warm and dense, its easy to feel out of this world. Forgetting the size of the tank, I closed my eyes and imagined I was being drifted off on calm waters.

Silence

Darkness

Weightlessness

I submitted to the waters and I ended up falling asleep, or at least I think I did. Surrounded by nothing really allowed me to calm my mind and forced me to not do anything for a whole hour. That was the real challenge. With my day to day busy life, its always difficult for me to find enough down time that truly forces me to stop doing things for a while. As much as I appreciated it, it was definitely something that I am not used to doing.

After a while, the chime came on and when I sat up and opened the door, it only took a few seconds for my eyes to adjust to the small salt lamp that was still. I had to go to the shower quickly, I could already feel the salt crystalizing on my skin. After I was clean, I stepped out of the shower and breathed for a bit. Truly taking in what it felt like to be relaxed. And it was very welcome. I still had a prenatal massage next, because my husband signed up for me to have both, but I was already rejuvenated. While floating isn’t something I would have signed myself up for, I am glad I did it. To have a new experience of relaxation and ease is always something worth trying.

After both sessions were up, the staff told me about the client room. Here, clients can relax with a beverage and paint on the collaborated canvas. The canvas is painted by clients by adding in something special. This was really amazing for me. Especially as an artist. I took pictures of the part I added. My contribution are the fish at the bottom. I took the first photo after I placed the orange spots, but they are there. After painting, I went to my car and grabbed my ‘Fun for Hours’ coloring book for them to keep in the room as a thank you for having such a wonderful establishment!

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Fun For Hours coloring book- for those who enjoy a challenge for their coloring! https://smile.amazon.com/Fun-Hours-Madelyn-Janelle/dp/0997885211/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1478490732&sr=8-1&keywords=fun+for+hours
Stressed Out! – For those who need to let out some anger without the profanity! https://smile.amazon.com/Stressed-Out-swear-phrases-profanity/dp/099788522X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1478490861&sr=8-1&keywords=stressed+out+madelyn+janelle

Death makes brothers of us all

When I first thought of posting this, it was several weeks ago and I had just read about the loss of a friend from school, another friend I had met in the last couple of years and Facebook reminded me with their wonderful ‘on this day’ app that I had another friend commit suicide a few years ago. With the feeling of loss and inspiration, I was going to post these same thoughts then, but life continues to move forward, you follow it and some things get put off until another painful shot comes your way, reminding you of what you once started.

A couple days ago I was traveling with my kids across a few states that took me roughly 8 hours of driving, stops, and getting gas to finally reached my destination around 8 pm. Exhausted, I got on social media and started noticing similar posts only from my former high school classmates. Everyone was talking about him, asking for prayers, expressing disbelief, saddened for his children. It took up every other post in my news feed. Scrolling through the heartache and condolences, one post had a news article that said ‘fatal motorcycle wreck’. I clicked it, read it, saw the pictures that showed a motorcycle on its side and one empty boot laying in the middle of the road and as it closed the article and what happened, it ended with the name of the casualty. His name was Eric.

My stomach crumbled. He was in my graduating class. He was a father, son and brother. He was always kind to me and we were starting to catch back up on Facebook. Just the day before I commented on one of his posts to help encourage him.  And just like that, literally hours after that, he’s gone. And how, dear reader, how do you cope with that reality?

Death always brings questions. We always wonder why someone was taken, why they were so young, why now. We always feel better when we have the knowledge and reasoning behind certain events that occur. It makes us feel safer. And the reality is, we can’t know all of those answers. We can, though, trust that there is a higher power at work and is taking care of His ultimate plan. So in the case of trusting, what are we supposed to take away from death?

A small notion I have about people dying is for those of us who are in pain to remember the positive in their lives. That there is a reason we, the living, should be inspired by the dead in some way. We can look at the deceased and think about their qualities and adapt something from their lives into ours. Something that would help build us as better humans and bring us closer together. One bright aspect of death is that is does bring us all together. We cry on each other’s shoulders, hug family and friends we haven’t seen in ages, talk to those who we haven’t heard from, laugh about memories, console others, speak about the happier times in life and pay our respects to our brother that has passed from this life. On the final goodbyes that you say to them, be sure to thank them for however they impacted your life and live so that you are an inspiration when your time comes.