Not too long ago, I showed a picture from my sketchbook of the main character of my Sacred Knight series, Steigan.

A few nights ago I was flipping through my sketchbook again and came across a picture that reminds me of Ithanes. Ah, Ithanes!

He doesn’t come into the story until book 2, Manifest the Magic, but he was so full of surprises for me. I’ve come to utterly adore him. He’s like the king of snark, and very powerful with his magic. He knows what he’s good at, and lets people follow their strengths. He’s a good leader in that he finds people to compensate for the areas where he is weak. I think that’s why he likes Steigan so much. Yet, he also doesn’t often show weakness in himself. He’s lord of two lands, Dubinshire and Gohaldinest, and he lets everyone know it. Don’t let him fool you, though. He does have his deep, dark secrets.

And speaking of which, I so want to look through that curio cabinet he keeps locked in his chambers. In book 3, To Birth a Destiny, the reader gets to see that curio a couple of times and Steigan even describes some of what he saw. But let me tell you, I was right there when Steigan was discussing what he was seeing and he certainly didn’t get to some of the more interesting items toward the back. Some day I’d like to draw that cabinet and all the trinkets in there. I’d also love to sit down and talk to Ithanes about how he collected all of them. Oh, the stories!

This sketch was done in 2018. I do think if I’d intended it to be Ithanes, it should have had a teardrop-shaped gemstone hanging from the circlet. Maybe I just needed practice drawing a circlet, even a wiry one. (grin)

Maybe someday I’ll get around to doing an illustrated Sacred Knight edition, or maybe even a graphic novel. Someday.

Inktober #4

Here are the 4th week of Inktober drawings. See the others here: Week 1, Week 2, Week 3.

Prompt #18 was “Bottle.”


Several years ago, I went to the park and sat alone in my car. My boys were off visiting their father. I was lonely and couldn’t stay at the quiet house any more. So I sat at the park and watched the clouds drift by. And cried. Okay, I’m going to admit it now, I cried. Hard. Long and hard.

Something encouraged me to open my eyes and look toward the sky. I did, and there was this cloud floating along that looked like this twisted genie lamp. I grabbed my sketchbook and drew it out. Then I did another, and another. I went home and continued drawing these all weekend long. It’s not like I was filling pages, but whenever I felt the mood to let my hands draw some elegant curves. 

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Inktober #3

And now for the installment of my Inktober drawings since last Thursday.

Prompt # 11 was “cruel.”


Okay, the world is just too cruel. I hate the horrible things we do to each other (for crap’s sake, people, we are all humans born in the same way and all stuck on this bloody rock together!), the animals, and the world (this bloody rock floating through the dangers of space!). I just couldn’t bring myself to think about cruelty. I’d rather do that in my fiction. Is that strange? Oh, well. So, I decided on a basket of flowers.

Obviously, though, I couldn’t get completely away from thinking about how cruel villains can be — note the apple and think of Snow White.

See? Evil and cruelty — we need to be nicer to each other.

Prompt #12 was “whale.”

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Talking Heads

As I’m finishing up with Prince of the Ruined Land, I’ve only had a couple moments to work on my comics. When I went to open up the next page I’d sketched out some time ago, I got the very laughable reminder that sometimes things just don’t work out.

I opened up this page and said, “WTF! Talking heads!”

MS5 Pages

Even with the placement of the dialogue, I couldn’t justify any of this to myself. There in the 3rd panel, she’s supposed to be doing this little head turn to glance away. Really? Didn’t I just do that on the last page? Maybe it was two pages ago.

Anyway, I got a laugh at myself, then I made the page invisible and tried again.

Failure is not fatal.

Sketching Fun – March 29, 2018

Another Weblink’s page has been posted on Noble Heart Comics for your reading. This is based on some of the work in progress blogs you saw here earlier.

If you want to stay up to date with the comics there, I suggest subscribing to the email (the box on the right). Honestly, I have no idea if it works (yet) as I just remembered to subscribe myself to it yesterday.

Yes, I subscribe to my own blogs. Yes, I’m a goober. I know. (grin)

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Sketchbook pages

While I was going back through my sketchbooks looking for an egg picture I drew some time ago, I started thinking that it’s been awhile since I showed a sketchbook page. I never did find the egg I was looking for (though I did find several others which I’d completely forgotten about – talk about a surprise).

I’ll share some of my egg sketches later. This page, however, I wanted to post. I found a lot of horses in my journal. I can’t say I’m surprised that I have a lot of horses, but I just didn’t remember drawing so many. I know I have a habit of drawing Steigan, the main character from my Sacred Knight series, but I obviously have been feeling a need to draw horses so I can draw the unicorns in the series when I finally get there.

Here’s the full page:

sketchbook page1

Below is a closeup of the upper section of the page. I don’t know what inspired the drawing, but I do enjoy it.

sketchbook closeup

It was fun going through the sketchbooks, even though I was flipping through pages quickly looking for an egg. Not only does it show how much I’ve grown, but also how I’ve developed as an artist. It’s silly, but when I started with my sketches, I would only draw on one side of the page — the right hand side. And I left a lot of white space around each drawing. Then, I started paying attention to the sketchbooks of other artists and saw how interwoven a lot of drawings were. I began to fill up the pages more. Then I saw an artist who was drawing on both front and back sides of each page in their sketchbooks. You can see from the top picture that this is actually the back side of the previous page as its on the left. I’ve even added some things I’ve cut out from junk mail or advertisements. I like to find phrases within junk mail and figure out how to make something new out of it. That’s the writer part of my, I’m sure. The sketchbook that had this page in it is stuffed to the brim with all sorts of goodies. I have little taped flaps, phrases, thoughts, ideas, journaling about what I’m thinking on a certain day, life sketches, folded pictures I thought were interesting. It’s fun to look back at all these treasures.

Yet, I couldn’t let it delay me right now. I would be too easy to go through every picture and waste all evening in nostalgia. So I kept my visit short and sweet.

But in flipping through them all, I found it interesting that I had needed permission to open up. I started off all closed up, tight, keeping things separated. But as I saw what more and more artists were doing, I loosened up and started to let things flow more and more. It seemed like a track that I needed to walk. It was a good reminder to keep trusting the process with the art in my life too.

ACEO envelope sketches

Sent out more ACEO’s last week. Here’s a sketch on the envelope:

Belita 1

Belita 2

Sent out another package too, but as I’m working on this post, I haven’t transferred those pictures yet. Will get to that one soon.

So, is this a waxing moon or a waning moon? I probably have a weird way of remembering which is which. I draw a line straight down from the tips. If the moon with the extended line looks like a “P,” then the moon is “pregnant,” which means it will get bigger (waxing). If the moon with the extended line looks like a “Q,” then the moon is “quitting” and getting smaller (waning). As I said, it’s probably a little weird. So, on this envelope, I wanted to send a waxing moon to the recipient in order to wish her many good things coming into her life, along with the wisdom of the owl. I hope she enjoys.

Sketchbook work – 02/2010

Sketchbook page February 2010 Dawn Blair ©2010
Sketchbook page
February 2010
Dawn Blair ©2010

Here’s another page from an older sketchbook — in fact, just a couple pages after Keteria’s sketch in the last post. Here’s where I was conceptualizing the tomb of St. Steigan. Also, notice a sketch of Steigan strutting. Yeah, he’s da man! Grin. And lots of scrolling patterns. I think a couple of them have turned into plants — dangerous looking plants if you ask me.

Thank you for letting me share with you.


Being Whole

Sometimes we hold onto regrets from our past longer than we should. We think that “we should’ve done this or that” and our lives now would be different.

I often regret that I didn’t spend more time drawing, doodling, and creating as a child. I once loved to paint. I remember sitting at the table with my mother as we painted with watercolors all over scrap paper. I loved her paintings, usually trees. I remember drawing ducks, well, actually the profile of a swimming duck — it was the only thing I felt I was good at drawing. That and a little smiling face based on Ziggy with rock star hair.

Yep, that was my image. I drew him on everything. Not that good, but he made me happy. That, and my duck. Other than that, I was a writer. I didn’t need to draw.

Yet I still loved doing things with my hands. I loved picture books. I loved comics. I loved photographs. I should’ve seen the signs all around me that I had a calling in art. I didn’t see those signs until I had some time to reflect on them. That’s when the regret seeped in.

I recently had an experience where I realized that I needed to stop piling more guilt onto these regrets. It wasn’t helping. In fact, it was actually hurting because I was bemoaning the fact that I could be so much further along if I hadn’t “wasted” all that time. Forget the fact that I was actually spending that time learning to tell a story and daydreaming. Nope, I’d wasted all that time! I’d never get it back. So, why even bother trying now because I was so far behind.

I realized that I needed to push that nagging voice aside and focus on the real truth — I had to get over wanting to heal the wounds of the past and discover that I am a whole person. I was not meant to start my art career earlier. I did need that time to play, dream, and write. It makes up a large part of who I am now and my work process. I wasn’t ready to sit down and learn to draw and paint like I am now. I am now ready to do more than just a flat face smiling back at me. I needed it then. Now I need to be more dynamic. Everything I have ever done has gone into this moment of creating myself. I am not a series of regrets, a rapid fire of success and failures. I am a creature of my own creation through success and failure. I have to learn what works for me and what doesn’t. I have to know, understand, and accept my own strengths. It is from this vantage point that I must do my work.

What regrets are limiting you? Have you realized it is better to be whole than looking back on the past with self irritation? How have you stopped wishing that you “had done” and started doing?