Sketch Studio - By Anna Overmoyer

Friday, May 22, 2015

Oof, it has been a while since I updated.  I can blame it on the fact that I am very excited about the things in my life that are unrelated to internet availability and the creation and documentation of consistent art.  You see, I am finally working on a sheep farm!

Since I last updated strange, unexpected, exciting, beautiful and ugly things have happened.  I'm learning things like how to except change at a drop of a hat, not to care quite so much about what people think and say about you.  Being misunderstood hurts like a mother- but we've all done it.  What that pain can do is fuel us to try harder to understand one another.

But I've also been learning other stuff that is less touchy-feely…. or more.  Sheep, for instance, are greasy (Who knew, right?), billy goats are probably the nastiest things ever, how to inject a vaccine, animals have impressive emotions, donkeys sound like demons sometimes, fairies, how to make artisan bread (I can tell you that has made me some friends along the way), American ballroom dance is not the way everyone else does it, listen to your instincts, how to confidently make dinner for 15 people, how to steam milk properly (3 years as a barista and I hadn't a clue apparently) and much much much more. If you would like to learn more about the other things I've learned, you can read all about it in my book Ten Gazzillion Things in a Barns and Nobles near you.

Since I don't really have anything else to share for the moment, here are some of my favorite sketchbook moments:

actually it was god-awful, but beggars can't be choosers hey? 

And here, for your perseverance in this long-winded post, is a more brilliant segment of a pen pal letter if I do say so:


Thanks for bearing with.  See you next time!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Olaf the Dancing Kitty

I'm in Scotland now!  And although I am on the go, I am still doing all the art things!  So here is what I've been working on for a kind lady client back in the ol' USofA.  His name is Olaf and he is a puppet made to honor the memory of a beloved real-life, full-sized kitty.  

Animal portraits used to be one of my least favorite things because, it takes a very long time to find something in an animal's face to make it individual.  Call me breedist, but all them cats look the same, whereas people have more distinguishable features and mannerisms.  That is not to say that they are all exactly the same, BUT one wrong move and it looks like any old cat.  There isn't too much room for play, is what I' saying.  
So when I thought about how I could make this project fun for myself, the great Beatrix Potter and her personality-infused animals sprung to mind.  The photos of Olaf reminded me a bit of the Gentleman Foxy Whiskers, in his waistcoat and finery.  So I drew him like this: 
But was deemed too serious for Olaf's temperament.  He was a silly cat.  
So I took Beatrix Potter into the 21st century and gave it a bit more of my own style.  



Until next time!  Love,

Friday, January 2, 2015

A Happy New Year! and 3 Family Portraits

Last year I had a premonition that 2014 would be a year of firsts.  It was to the exciting extreme!!!  But you know what is even more exciting?  I'll tell you.  Although 2014 is at an end, it doesn't look like the firsts are going to end anytime soon!  

This past summer I was commissioned to do a series of 3 family portraits for a growing and blossoming family tree.  I finished them right before I left for Ireland.  I was so excited to share them, but I had to wait until Christmas because they were intended as surprises.  So here they are now! 

I did things a little backward this time around and bought the frames first, before I knew how exactly they'd look.  This ended up working very well.  The chestnut finished frames, that I bought just because I thought they were beautiful and felt right for this family, perfectly matched the brown ink I had been itching to use.  They glowed in the frames, and all my insecurities melted away for a moment. 

May God bless you all in your respective new years!


Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Fool's Gold and the Fool

There are few things that I've experienced that are more magical than the fairy stories told by those that truly understand them.  Fairies are perhaps a beautiful manifestation of boredom blended with imagination.  Maybe they are Spirits physically taking form in living, breathing creatures.  Maybe it's a combination.  At least part of the truth is that the ambiguity, scope and mystery of the lore does not detract, but adds to our enchantment in fairies.  

And now I'm in Germany for a few days, then it's back to Ireland to be a nanny until the end of the month (and stopping by to visit The Valley House of course).  'Til next time.


Sunday, November 30, 2014

The Beautiful People of Achill Island

Today I'm leaving my home of the last couple months, The Valley House of Achill Island.

Achill Island is a relatively small island right off the west coast of Ireland.  It is the off-season now, which pretty much means it isn't summer, and therefore mostly empty and closed down.  I keep hearing about how wonderful and buzzing the island is during the summer with tourists, surfing, shops, 20 hour long days, sunshine, etc.  Right now it's desolate.  But desolate can be far more beautiful than buzzing, I think.  In truth, I'm just a normal tourist, but when I'm one of the only tourists around, it feels like I alone, have found something special and so so full of character.

The scenery is breathtaking.  Walking through the empty landscapes is like being in a Lord of the Rings movie, but the best part is the people I've met here.  I could spend forever writing paragraph after paragraph on each person I've been acquainted with.  That is not why you or I are here, however, and this is arguably just another way of telling their stories.

"There are so few people that come to this place.  So when they do, you've gotta really love on them."

Bye ya'll!  See you in Germany.