Thursday, December 18, 2008

My cat is cute. ♥

Taken back in late October, when things were still green and it was (comparatively) warm outside. :) So cute!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Expect a monster EXPLOSION soon!

Sorry to post again so soon, but I wanted to share with the blogosphere. ^_^

I tried pouring again last night, and my mold worked!

No photos because I'm lame & left the camera attached to the computer overnight (so its battery is totally drained), but whee! I'm going to buy some supplies (more gloves, masks, & rubber bands) tonight after work, and hopefully I'll have quite the little monster horde to share in a few days' time. :D

I need to start working on colorways... I've had a few in mind since I started sculpting the first little monster, but I need to get them out of my sketchbook and colored up in photoshop.

OMG ~ :D

Sketch Challenge, Day 16

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sketches for Dec. 14th & 15th


New monster sculpt, almost done...

I wasn't happy with how the mold turned out for my last little monster (to say the least), so this weekend I started him from scratch! Believe it or not, he is much cuter, and smoother without the hours of sanding (thanks to the use of rubbing alcohol!).

I put him in for his first baking last night, after I add all his details, I should be finished with him tonight. :D

I am going to be trying a one-piece mold this time around, and though there are also challenges in that approach, compared to a two-piece mold, I know they're fundamentally easier. ^^;

I may even get to the moldmaking process tonight. :O

STAY TUNED!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sketch Challenge, Day 3


I used reference for the woman's face and arms, but other than that, its all me. :D I'm very happy with how that figure study turned out! I guess I'm not quite as rusty at human anatomy as I thought. :) I'm looking forward to today's figure drawing lunch!

To the lower left, I couldn't help myself - I've been playing Too Much Animal Crossing. ;) So have a chibi Shiba Inu and Japanese Bobtail! Awwww.

As always, click for larger!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sketch Challenge, Day 2



I decided to do some anatomy practice from one of my college textbooks, and feel like it turned out pretty well. The hand on the bottom arm is funky, but after it was pointed out to me that the hand in the original image was badly drawn in the first place I let it go.

I'm very happy with the girl character. :) I want to refine and fix her up for simple photoshop coloring.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Sketch Challenge, Days 0 & 1



I've decided that I need to keep a sketchbook again, like I did in college - I improved so much when I did, but I've fallen out of the habit! So for the entire month of December I've challenged myself to fill up one sketchbook page per day - though since my sketchbook is small, I may bump that up to two pages. I guess we'll see how I feel each day. :)

The image with marker sketches is what originally gave me this idea, and was done on the weekend. The image with the figure study was done last night.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sculpture - More Xombie Progress


More progress on this sculpture commission - he's almost done and ready for painting!

If you notice he has no toes/feet, there's a reason for that! :) I like to keep the feet as plain stubs until after I bake--super sculpey is so soft sometimes, its easier to bake in stages and then add more detail. I'll do the same thing with his tail, adding more bulk to it after its had a preliminary baking. :) Its on the 'ratty' side right now, no good!

I should have more photos, of the baked and painted version of Xombie, soon. :)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

WIP, plus a few sculpting tips

Here's a close-up shot of a work-in-progress for a client on Etsy, of her American Pit Bull Terrier, Xombie. I really like how his expression turned out. :) I need to add his bottom teeth and his tongue, but its a good start.

You can see a bit of the foil armature at the bottom of the photo--I typically start with a base of foil and/or wire, depending on the size of the sculpture, and the structures I need to create. Stocky shapes are usually just foil, while thinner ones are a base of wire and foil. For example, Xombie's whole body/head is foil, while his forelimbs are wire with a few layers of foil on the outside.

I'll take more photos as I go along (right now only this fellow's head/face is in any sort of 'finished' state), and explain my process a little more, over the next few days.

Happy Monday, everyone! Have a great week. :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sophia, monster-ized!


Jenny over at My London Flat Couture commissioned me to 'monster-ize' her pup, Sophia! I think it turned out pretty cute. :) This was completely digital! Please click the image for a bigger version, so annoying when blogger shrinks things down so much!

I can do a rendition of your pet/favorite animal in a similar style for $35. You will get a web-sized image, and the original high resolution 5"x7" 300 DPI image to print.

Please email me (shelly[at]shellyrodriguez.com) if you're interested, or have any questions. :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Yummy Beef Stew

photo & recipe from marthastewart.com

I made this beef stew for the two of us late last week--and it turned out WONDERFULLY! That, and its pretty nice to come home when its dark and chilly outside, to know that you have a hearty meal waiting for you. :) Martha Stewart's recipes have never let me down, they're always so delicious. :)

I'll be making another soup/stew tonight - the last of the stew is coming with us to work, so we'll need something new for dinner... what can I say, the cold makes me lazy! ;)
--
Ingredients

Serves 6

* 3 pounds beef chuck, trimmed of visible fat and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
* 1/3 cup tomato paste
* 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
* 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* Coarse salt and ground pepper
* 1 pound medium onions (about 2), cut into 1-inch chunks
* 1 pound small white or red new potatoes (about 6), well scrubbed, halved if large
* 1 pound carrots, cut into 1 1/2-inch lengths
* 6 garlic cloves, smashed
* 2 bay leaves

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a Dutch oven (5-quart) with a tight-fitting lid, combine beef, tomato paste, vinegar, and flour; season with salt and pepper.
2. Add onions, potatoes, carrots, garlic, bay leaves, and 3 cups water. Bring to a boil. Cover, transfer to oven, and cook until meat is fork-tender, 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Remove bay leaves and, if desired, season with salt and pepper before serving.
3. Slow-Cooker Variation:
Place beef in a 5-quart slow cooker. Distribute tomato paste, vinegar, and flour over beef; season generously with salt and pepper. Add onions, potatoes, carrots, garlic, and bay leaves. Cover slow cooker; cook on high until beef is fork-tender, about 5 hours (or cook on low heat 8 hours).

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Time for a poll!


Please take a few minutes to fill out this poll about tee shirts & designs, I would really appreciate it! :)

Friday, November 7, 2008

I'm featured in a Treasury West! :D

There's my pinkie monster, top row & center! You can see the rest of the treasury here.

How fun! :D I'm pretty excited, its my first time being featured in a treasury!

IKEA!

Ah, the land of cheap, yet stylish goods... we're going to be decorating a bit this weekend!

People with license plates from Nevada and other surrounding states are usually in the parking lot. Its so crazy how people make a pilgrimage to this store, but at the same time I can understand it. ;)

I'll finally be buying some better lighting for my art area, and some wall organizing stuff, as well. Its intended for kitchens, but I can easily see bottles of paint, scissors, sculpting tools and other things hanging within easy reach of my desk. :)

I think these will work perfectly--right now all my acrylic craft paints are in a sad little shoebox, and I usually keep my brushes in a plastic party cup. It works 'ok', but it takes up a lot of space on my small art desk! Thankfully the things I'll be discarding in the organization bonanza can be reused/recycled. :)

I'll take photos once everything is up~! :) I should have some art to post this weekend as well, been working on new stuff for my etsy store!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Voting day in the US!

This is probably the most important election of our generation. Please do NOT 'not vote'- exercise your privilege as an an American!

Our country needs change, and you can help. History could be made today, folks...

Monday, November 3, 2008

What I've Been Playing: Little Big Planet

I love, love, LOVE this game!

The concept of "Play, create, share," is wonderful to me. Although I haven't created any levels yet (the mood hasn't struck), playing through the levels created by other users is actually a lot of fun.

I've stuck mostly to the story mode, and have enjoyed it immensely. The settings for each group of 3-4 levels is really inspired, drawing on cultures, cities and geographical areas around the world.

The game is played with a 2D camera, and because of this the gameplay is very reminiscent of old 2D platformer games on the Nintendo/Super Nintendo & Sega Genesis, but with amazing 3D graphics in place of tiny, pixelated sprites.

You control a 'sackboy' (which can easily be transformed in to a sackgirl via accessories), and you are given almost limitless options to customize them. Fabric patterns for your 'skin', wigs, glasses, hats, dresses and jackets, even a lion's mane, ears and tail!

Your character starts out looking like everyone elses', brown, with a silver zipper, big button eyes and a happy face. But upon playing with the controller for a few seconds, pressing any button on the d-pad gives you a whole range of emotions--happy, sad, scared, angry--and different intensities.

As you play through the game, you unlock various objects to use in the level building mode, as well as stickers (used to unlock more items or secret areas), and of course, more clothing items for your sackperson.

This is one game where I feel really compelled to get 100% in all the levels, for all objectives (finishing a level, collecting all items, and finishing a level without losing a life). Each objective is rewarded with a gold icon to denote that you've completed the task, as well as even more items & accessories.

In summary - I want to stay home all week and play this game, until I've gotten everything they've hidden away in each one of the beautiful levels. I can't remember the last time that happened...

P.S: Like I just mentioned to Xavi, if Sony ever decided to sell physical sackpeople with oodles of accessories, even at the age of 24 I would buy them up (and play with them!), no question. They are too adorable for their own good!

Little Big Planet is for the Sony Playstation 3.

Friday, October 31, 2008

MAUstudio Givaway, last day!

My little bloo monster guy is up for grabs in the MAUstudio MEGA giveaway this time around! Check it out, and GOOD LUCK~!

Happy Halloween, folks! :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Your Halloween Soundtrack?

So, we're having a Halloween party on Friday, and everything is falling into place--bought the main ingredients yesterday for dinner, going to buy some candy and ingredients for baked yummies tonight, going to buy the last few (extremely perishable!) ingredients on Friday, for drinks and garnishes. I foresee lots of cooking on Thursday night--and I'm looking forward to it! I love putting parties and get-togethers, well, together. ;)

But... we don't have any music! This album on amazon.com is a good start (I'll download the tracks off of iTunes instead of buying it), but I need more!

Suggestions, anyone?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Happy Monday!

Hope everyone had a good start to their week! Above is the invitation I designed a few weeks ago for our Halloween party. :)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Look what we got...

And I can't wait to play it! For all the nerds reading, I'll write about my impressions of the game later. :)

Yay!

Thanks, Hasbro!

On Wednesday, we had am impromptu meeting at work--Hasbro had wanted to show all of us on the Littlest Pet Shop team their appreciation for making Littlest Pet Shop the best game that we possibly could, having never made a DS game before!

I think its wonderful that Hasbro recognized each and every one of us--and look, there's my name~! :D

Friday, October 24, 2008

New Mailing List! Have a Happy Friday!

I started a mailing list last night--mailing list members will get a 'sneak peek' at new merchandise before the rest of the internet, word of upcoming sales, special list-only promotions, and news of events/shows I'll be attending.

You can sign up here on my blog, or on my website!

--

Ahhh, its been a very busy work week! Lots of art being made at work, which is great fun (I love being busy)--but at the same time I feel pretty lazy by the time I get home. I've been working on 'after work'/personal art a lot less this past week and a half--though being ill may have had something to do with that as well.

I have art to make tonight (I'm lookin' at you, London Flat Couture!), sculpts to finish up, and photos to post. I had wanted to share photos NOW, but unfortunately, my camera's battery needs a recharge... so hopefully that will be ready by the time I get home tonight. :)

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tagged!

Seven facts...

1) I went to middle school in Germany, and High School in England because my father was in the Army.

2) I made a willful decision not to learn Spanish in High School because I thought I'd never need it...

3) ...I then fell in love with (and married) a man from Spain. Oops!

4) I like to give things silly names... our cat's REAL name is Captain, but I sometimes call him McSlinkersons, Sugarbottoms or Cheekins. Don't ask, its just something weird I do. :)

5) When I was growing up, I wanted to be a paleontologist.

6) I detested baby dolls as a kid--barbies were ok, but I loved playing with stuffed animals and plastic toy dinosaurs.

7) I would rather adopt a child than have one of my own.

I tag... whoever wants to do this! Sorry, I'm cheap. ;)

I really want an iPhone, + Pogo stylus, so I can do this:

Art by Goro on Gorilla Artfare, AMAZING art, check it out!

These were painted with a POGO stylus and a regular ol' iPhone. Pretty amazing, imagine the intricate sketches & color roughs you could do, on the go! No need for paint, sketchbooks, brushes... just your phone and the stylus.

I want this pretty badly, maybe after Christmas. :)

I've been sculpting, I swear! I've got some cute new cephalopods waiting for a coat of paint and a photo session... and I've been tagged (twice!) for filling out that meme that's been circulating the blog-o-sphere... don't worry, I'll fill it out later today. :) Thanks for thinking of me! <3

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Holiday MADNESS sale! Oct.19th-Nov 30th!


Just in time to start your holiday shopping, I am offering 15% off all items in my shop!*

And on top of THAT, if you spend $40 or more, enjoy First Class shipping of your purchase absolutely FREE of charge**!

--
*excludes custom order items.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Moldmaking, Disaster!

Well it looks like my mold didn't work out--the first part I poured didn't set properly on the inside due to under mixing parts a + b together, and when I tried cutting into it, I was greeted with lots of blue goo. :( The second half was fine, but since I had to cut into it... its not really fine. Sigh!

The mold release really didn't seem to work--though I realized RIGHT NOW that maybe I was supposed to brush it on? That's an expensive 'oops'--each one of the little kits cost $25. :(

My little monster's arm is broken, too. It was a clean break so he'll be easy to glue back into working order, its just a bummer. Poor little guy!

I will be trying again this weekend... maybe with a one piece mold this go around? I think I have to do a little more research before trying again.

Business Card Design!



I think I'm going with this one for now. :) Tonight I'll be revamping my blog/etsy to match!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Squids!

I finally decided on what I will be putting on my Spoonflower fabric--baby squid~! These are the colors I've decided on for the moment, though I am still playing around in photoshop with exactly what I want to do with them!

I will be sending away for my fabric tomorrow, I hope it doesn't take the entire three weeks to get here! I get impatient when I want to play with new art toys. ;)

In other news, I should be able to start making resin casts this weekend... my monster mold is almost done!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

My games are out!


The games I've been working on for what has been almost a year, are finally out!

Littlest Pet Shop is a series of games based on the mega-hit Hasbro toy line of the same name--except now you can explore different worlds with your favorite Littlest Pets, dress them up, and play fun games along the way. :)

Its totally girlie, sugar-coated fluff, but I love it. Its also available for the Nintendo Wii and the PC!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Sick!

I feel totally gross right now! :( Been working on and off on sculpture stuff all weekend, but because I was only working 'on and off', I have nothing to show you yet. Then I started getting aches and a sore throat! Ahhhhh!

I'm going to rest, enjoy my cinnamon-spiked hot chocolate (from scratch!), and hopefully I'll be ready to post new art sometime mid-week!

Time to crawl back to the couch...

Friday, October 10, 2008

I think I'm in Love!

Mr. Happy Melon! by Tubbypaws

Ahhh! Everything they make is SO CUTE! Just take a look through their portfolio... I just about died.

Cute art like this is so inspiring to me! Ahhhh, I want to draw cute random things now!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Who knew I'd ever get this excited about plastic...


Sorry for posting again so soon, but I just wanted to share - my mold rubber and liquid plastic from SmoothOn.com arrived on my doorstep this afternoon! Yeah!

I need to buy some modeling clay and start making a box outta foamcore for my little monster dude...

Let the planning, fretting, and stress begin! ;)

Big Bird


I finished this up last night--something different from my 'normal' cutesy art (though I used to draw this way all the time in high school/early college). Very loosely based on an ancient Phorusrhacid, or 'terror bird'. It was a lot of fun to create. :)

Monday, October 6, 2008

I love this time of year...

Not just for the weather cooling down, but for all the TV shows! I've become an avid television watcher since I got out of college--its nice having 'free time' outside
Californication, Heroes, Entourage and Dexter are my favorites so far this year (in no particular order)... I need to check out Pushing Daisies I've heard good things from quite a few people who have led me to TV/movie greatness before.

OH! For all my foodie readers out there--guess what show starts up again on the 17th of November?

Laazy weekend--Hello new week!

photo from Kuso Designer Toys

Ahh, what a lazy weekend! We moved a few things around the house (re-arranging is fun!), and I worked on a few new sculptures + a commission, but mostly we sat around the house watching a lot of TV. :P I've been feeling a little uninspired, so I guess I needed to take a break and veg out.

On Saturday, Plastic & Plush linked to this adorable vinyl kitten with a little sunhat! Her name is Teke the Cat, and this variant is the 'memories of summer'. I want her sooo badly, I think she's just precious. :) Too bad she's $75! Maybe she'll still be on sale in a month or two...*sigh* I still need to buy one of those Cosbaby Iron Man toys! My next paycheck is this Friday... ;)

Hopefully you guys will like the new stuff I've been working on--I should be posting some of that in the next few days. :)

Friday, October 3, 2008

Kitty Cat Halloween Costumes

Say hello to our pet cat, Captain:

I'm going to be an evil cat-mommy and make him dress up for Halloween. :D He's a feisty, naughty cat--the obvious choice would be to make him dress up like a pirate, but I dunno...

Or maybe he could be a little angel (haha, riiiight):
Or maybe, MAYBE something a little more low-key, that he'd be less likely to rip off and destroy within five minutes?

Maybe I should be totally ridiculous and get a kitty wig:

Any suggestions? If you find something cute/funny, please link it in the comments! :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Moldmaking & Casting with Resin

Gooma flied to misterious island.
photo by iron_Lung on flickr


So on Tuesday night I ordered some moldmaking rubber and some opaque resin, to experiment with casting my monster-y dudes. It shipped yesterday, and should arrive next Wednesday!

I've seen SO many cool things done with resin, sometimes they look just like vinyl toys to me!

Flickr is an excellent resource for finding new artists and art types, so I figured I'd give it a go in terms of looking for resin toy makers--lo and behold, I found the group RESIN IS THE NEW VINYL. Such neat stuff to see--from protypes, to plain casts, to finished, painted models! I love it. :)

Lunartik in a cup of tea custom toys
photo by lunartic on flickr


Sketchbot Prototype Phase 4
photo by sketchguy on flickr


Sketchbot Prototype SDCC
photo by sketchguy on flickr

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

My art--and lots other awesome stuff--for FREE!

Yeah, you heard me right! FREE! All you have to do is visit the MAUstudio blog and leave a comment about an item you like that is in one of the sponsor's shops. Easy peasy!

The giveaway will last for the entire month of October, with different items up for grabs each week; this week you have a chance at winning all of the items below (including one of my bunni cell phone charms!):



Check it out HERE!