sad face…

very sad!

Practicing drawing various facial expressions seems to be paying off. I am quite pleased with how this drawing for Albion turned out. She does indeed look like she is distressed and crying – just what the scene in question calls for. Poor girl.

UPDATE: Poem from Tom in the comments capturing in words what I tried to show in my illustration…

fractured fragments of a life fall hard
cold rain upon a bitter stormy sea
pouring forth the pain of broken shards
splinters of a soul by death set free
melting childhood verities secure
questions never answered but by tears
desperate moments seeking to assure
sorrow overwhelming hollow fears
face distorted anguish speaks in sobs
the inarticulation of her loss
marches down her visage as it robs
reason cast aside in tempest tossed
incoherent sadness sweeps her past
though everything still matters nothing lasts

Copyright (C) 2012 TJ Radcliffe

image (cc) 2012 Hilary Farmer

yin yang fish…

yin yang fish

Aren’t they the cutest yin yang fish ever?! There is a significant tradition of using fish shapes to represent the yin yang symbol. Mine is a cute cartoon style version – so happy and cuddly!
I was just doodling and this is what happened – hope you enjoy 🙂

UPDATE: Cute and cuddly poem to match these fish – thanks Tom!!

When two fishies fall in love
they sometimes snuggle up
fin to fin and head to tail
like wine within a cup:

each touching all, conforming close
to contour and to form
smiling all the while: they know
they’ll never be forlorn!

In complementary shapes they make
a perfect pair ideal
their yin and yang in balanced smiles
revealing how they feel.

Copyright (C) 2012 TJ Radcliffe

image (cc) 2012 Hilary Farmer

Lady Belinda…

take that!

Recently my computer drawings have all been for Albion, so here’s another sneak peak. Lady Belinda is ready for “war” apparently! Of course she has a new dress, hairdo and battle-parasol for the occasion!

UPDATE: New poem from Tom! She sounds as tough as she looks… (or maybe it’s all in her head 😉

Like Boudicca of old I’m fighting
for English pride and English soil!
With my parasol a-smiting
see me join in war-like toil!
My battle-dress in bloody hues
will spread to all the dreadful news
of my arrival on the field!
The enemy shall surely yield
when they see my fierce visage
topped by locks in horned array
like a battle-helm in ways
dispelling all my soft mirage:
revealing all my inner fire
promising a fight that’s dire!

Copyright (C) 2012 TJ Radcliffe

image (cc) 2012 Hilary Farmer

Marlowe’s Cat!

Plum Bottom?

Sorry for the lack updates recently – well, my excuse is that I have been distracted by our new website and graphic web-novel – Songs of Albion with writing by Tom Radcliffe – a frequent contributor to this blog!
This was a very quick doodle that became the basis of a main character – and we liked him so much that this sketch has been included in the story. Check it out!!

UPDATE: Oops! I forgot to put this up right away when it came in from Tom… a ballad to a purple cat… but no, it touches on many things Albion in just three short verses… read on!

Upon the shores of Albion
our purple Cat abides
hunting mice in forests deep
or eels at lower tides

while Marlowe makes himself a fool
with dominating passions
Cat’s the perfect cat: aloof
from fickle human fashions

Perhaps a Spaniard in the works
will turn his world on end
where up is down and foul is fair
and enemy is friend!

Copyright (C) 2011 Tom Radcliffe

image (cc) 2011 Hilary Farmer

the raven…


This would be my Halloween post. There’s a scene in a Terry Pratchett book with a raven sitting on a skull – because that’s so appropriate… as I remember it, the raven was terribly bored. I think this one is practising saying “nevermore” to while away the idle hours of skull-sitting… but he’s very atmospheric!

This week everyone should check out  Machine of Death and buy the book!… A number of my favourite webcomic writers and artists participated in this project/anthology but my most favourite is of course Tom Radcliffe, friend, writer, poet, physicist and frequent contributor to this blog. As well, we have done a silly illustrated story/graphic novel together – well, graphic epic poetry thing called Cindy Loo You (don’t forget to read it!) and have another more webcomic-like project in the works.

UPDATE: From Tom in the comments a very atmospheric poem to go with the image! Enjoy!!

This midnight bird is deeply boring into questions, quandaries soaring
high above his cranial perch where he studies arcane lore:
to catch a poet lightly sleeping, tossing in his dreams and weeping,
where on wings of darkness sweeping comes a raven with a roar
of his mantra, “Nevermore.”

Through the passages of sleep runs the poet far and deep
where Alph the sacred river ran to reach some subterranean shore
whose beaches host the scattered bones of long extinct and ancient poems,
souls of songs whose words have flown, music lost without a score;
quoth the poet, “Nevermore.”

There beside the death of dreams he wades into Alph’s sacred stream
and drinks the waters of forgetting while above the raven soars:
dark on blackness always calling; turning, rising, ever falling,
as the poet’s mind is mauling memories that form his core,
soft repeating, “Nevermore.”

Then a tapping rap erupts to break the dream and interrupt
the poet’s loss of all he is to find a raven at his door
who hops upon his desktop skull where a bird might sit and mull
the human mind’s hard bony hull, hiding brain both hind and fore.
Quoth the raven, “Nevermore!”

Copyright (C) 2010 Tom Radcliffe

image (cc) 2010 Hilary Farmer

Cindy Loo You!

I am delighted that my friend, Tom Radcliffe and I have set up – well mostly Tom – a website for our experimental work, Cindy Loo You, (formerly “What if”) which evolved on this blog in a very jazz-like way. We have done some tweaking and formatting and there is new material… It will be even more fun and easy to read with the images and poems together on each page. The posting schedule is twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays so check it out regularly!

We are also working on a Brand New Project! More information to come…

image (cc) 2010 Hilary Farmer

what if – part 12…

an " 'island fling"??

OK that’s a terrible pun but I couldn’t resist. Remember that the island folk had a Celtic sounding name and then there they were dancing… so the highland fling came to mind… and yes, they’re out walking their birds. Not sure why… Hopefully Tom can help with that when he sends in the next poetic segment!

I have added a category for the “what if” series so if you’re just starting, you can click on it to see all of them without distractions and for maximum amusement value – check the comments!

image (cc) 2010 Hilary Farmer

what if – part 3…

googly eyes...

And we’re off on another crazy literary romp led by Tom Radcliffe in the comments… Thanks Tom!

I thought we’d just pause before heading off to help out the Grinch with his home decorating troubles – or whatever it was. Obviously Cindy Lou wanted to get dressed up to impress the handsome stranger – and his morse… I think they make a cute trio!

image (cc) 2010 Hilary Farmer

lingering duality…reharmonizing the universes…

lingering duality
reharmonizing the universes

Well, if you haven’t been following the comments for the last few posts, these images will seem very strange! I’m trying to imagine a visual conclusion to the story that came about as a response to the doodles I was posting… so it has become a back and forth dynamic and lots of fun! I actually did the second image first but then thought of the second idea as I was heading out the door to work this morning. So here they both are. I am not sure if they are alternate endings or part of the same ending. I guess we’ll see soon when (we hope) Tom Radcliffe takes a little more time out of his busy life to write the (I’m sure) surprising conclusion to our otherworldly, yet Montreal-based, adventure! To read the whole thing start here reading the comments.

images (cc) 2010 Hilary Farmer

today’s doodle… a seal…

swimming seal

Well, there have been more delays with the final image of the rabbit on the moon story… I still hope to have it done this week! In the mean time, this may be a sneak peek into the world of the next story I am going to work on. In many ways, the setting is just as far from the everyday North American realm as ancient China. I did this drawing over a year ago after reading a short story by Tom Radcliffe – a fantasy set in a mythical past on the west coast. It could be fun to explore this further!

image (cc) 2010 Hilary Farmer