Thursday, September 2, 2010

Baltimore Happiness

I made it there alive!!!!  And check out the new hair color btw...I flippin' lurv it.
Brace yourselves this is a massive post...ready?
Alright...where to begin?  I LOVE Baltimore.  Not just the convention they held, but the city was truly great too.  It's always difficult going to large cities for conventions and trying to figure out what to do in the evening when the floor closes.  So many times we end up back in the hotel after finding the closest place to eat, and we always seem to fall asleep around... 9:00 or 10:00 (not fun)  Baltimore had plenty of things for us to entertain ourselves with-in walking distance: great restaurants, live music, aquarium, singing fudgery, AND dragon paddle-boats!!!!  You read right...singing fudgery and dragons.  It was already amazing that I finally had my own table at a convention, but the fact that the city was great, was just icing on the cake...or fudge.
  So, who wants to see some pictures!? 
Moi, working at trying to look busy while people stand there and judge my work. :)

Boom baby!!  My very first commission at Baltimore Comic-Con.  All the commissions I did at the convention where in this same style...there's no way I could shell out drawings like my portraits in a short amount of time.  For those who don't know, this is Rogue from Marvel's X-Men.  The guy I did this for was really pleased with the outcome, including the text that I put above her.  His words were, "Classic."
Some views of my table!  Robert Downey Jr. was a hit with the ladies of course...but more guys bought prints of him than anyone. ^-^
And of course I was not alone at my table.  The OrccaCast and Fangirl Confessional where there promoting.  This is Jen and I with our game faces on...we scared a few away with this.
Danny and Jason loitering..."Get away you crazy kids!!!  You're scaring the costumers!!"
A view down the aisle I was in, which was only a fraction of the whole artist alley.
Here's another adorable commission I did...this one was for Jen, ha!  Sketch card of Big Barda from DC Comics.  I really love her helmet, and you can't tell that I used a gold paint pen to highlight it.  Oh well, go knock on Jen's door to see it in person, it's shiny!!! 
Here's something different!  Some guy came by my table and specifically wanted me to contribute to this collaboration.  If you can't tell it's all of the same character, just different interpretations.  For the life of me I can't remember her name...anywho, mines at the top in the middle.
   Here's a close up of mine...meow.
This one is another collaboration.  My friend Jen has been getting commissions from this girl ever since her first convention...she's very loyal!  Peng, as she goes by, did the pencils and Jen commissioned me to ink and color it.  I did it with Prisma color pencils.  And again, for those who are not comic nerds like us, it's Mystique from the X-Men comics.  I've got another one I'm working on that Peng penciled, so be on the look out for that one!  You can check our Peng's awesome work at
Close up!
I did a lot more commissions than these...but I failed to whip out the camera and take pictures of those.  Live and learn!  Here are the newest sketch cards that I took with me to sell though!
 Kick Ass sketch cards wha!!!!?????
The Joker, Power Girl, and Kitty Pryde.  I gave the original Power Girl to Amanda Conner :-O "What!?  You crazy!!!"  Ya, I was freaking out about it until she seemed genuinely surprised and happy that I gave it to her.  Amanda Conner was the main pencil artist for the Power Girl comics #'s 1-12.  She's amazing and I want to be her when I grow up. :)    
 Awww Sookie....True Blood sketch cards!
 Last but not least, the mighty THOR!!!!!  Once again, you can't see how I've highlighted him with a silver paint pen.  I still have the original if anyone wants it!!!  huh? huh?

Throughout the whole convention I needed something to bide my time in-between commissions.  I dug out an old project that I started a YEAR ago... *shakes head*  Good thing is, this geared me up to finally try to finish it.  Although it's not there yet......
Sigh...still quite a bit to go, so don't go judging yet.

Yes, I warned you this would be a big post!  Aren't you glad I waited to post everything though?  Some things I learned for next time: I need to invest in a banner with my name and art on it.  I looked so pitiful in-between two guys with massive banners screaming at people to come to their table.  More merch equals more money!  And finally, Master Chief fighting Boba Fett sells like hotcakes.
Overall, I could have been busy and made more money, but I was a newbie this year and I think I did pretty well.  I made some new friends and clients and I think I caught the bug.  The bug to do more tables at conventions!!!  I've taken the plunge to get my art out there and it's already started to pay off...literally.  Hey, look at that, I'm a paid artist ma!!! 

Friday, July 30, 2010

Baltimore Comic-Con

I'm officially back from stage managing KCTC's Summerfest's production of RENT.  It's taken almost a week for me to recover from the intensity that is stage managing our in the middle of a giant field!  But everything turned out well in the end, and my allergies didn't kill me...yet...

Anywho!  As I may have mentioned before, I'll be attending Baltimore Comic-Con this next month (Aug. 27th-29th), and I'll be at my own booth in artist alley!!!!  
TAH DAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!
YES that's right...ever since I started going to cons I've longed to be in the artist alley.  For those of you out there who don't know what I'm talking about, I'll try to sum it up for you: Artist Alley is the area, in the back, of any comic book convention where artists are set up at individual tables.  They have all there art of display, and you can buy prints, commissions, or just talk em up.  Most of the time it's a mixture of known and unknown artists.  If you're like me and you can't get enough  So, I'm flippin' out about being there.  I won't be by myself at my booth.  I'll have my dear friends from Orccacast there, sans Micheal (who will be preparing for DragonCon).  If you don't know, they are a podcast that consists of all things nerdy.  They will be recording a show there, so if you're attending you should swing by to say'll be on the air!  Check them out!
Hopefully the podcast that I'm a part of, Fangirl Confessional, will also be there...once again sans Kerry (going to DragonCon...sigh).  We are also a very nerdtastic podcast, but from the girls point of view.  You can check us out at  We'll also be on Stitcher Radio soon.
Check out Baltimore's site here:
I'll have more information hopefully my booth number. :)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Trading Card Madness...and a Clown

This past weekend  I had the pleasure of being one of the featured artists at A+ Comics for the comic book creators independence day.  This was the first time that I've had the chance to publicly display my art and try to sell prints and sketches.  I'll admit, I was wicked nervous having never done anything like this before...felt a little vulnerable sitting around people like Robert Kirkman and Mark Kidwell who are established creators.  I know what you're thinking, "Why was Tressa there, she doesn't have a comic book of her own?"  Well, the shop got wind that my friend Jason and I are creating a web comic and that's why I was there.  We haven't started posting the comic yet but I really think it's something that people will enjoy...don't worry I'll keep you updated on it.
Anywho, basically what I did was sell copies of some sketch cards that I came up with and I also did 5 dollar ink sketches for those who wanted a character of their own.  Here are the sketch cards that I had to begin with:
Cute, right?  The Buffy was my favorite, which I ended up give the original to a my new friend Kerry!  I loved how they all turned out, so expect more in the future!  If you want one of your own my commission prices are 15 for ink or a portrait style and 25 for color.  One that I did for Kerry's boyfriend, Micheal, was this little critter:
 It's Dexstarr!!!!!
The other brand spanking new thing I have to share is my latest pencil portrait...for those who don't care much for clowns, brace yourself....
For those who may not know this is from the opening scene of "The Dark Knight" where the Joker (seen here up above) successfully robs a bank.  Wouldn't you hand the money over if that came walking in?  The original is up for sale if anyone is interested, please let me know!
Last but not least I have become a part of a podcast!!! :)  My friend Jen, who you all know from Confessions of a Fan Girl has created a like minded podcast for what us chicks like to discuss.  It's Jen, Kerry and I and it's all things nerdy in the world!!!  Please check us out and become a follower...we are getting better and better each broadcast!!

Well, that's it for right now...I'm diving deeper and deeper into the show that I'm stage managing so these next few weeks are going to be crazy and fun at the same time!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

You're Munny recap from the last entry:  I bought some Kidrobot Munny vinyl D.I.Y. toys in hopes that I might have found another outlet for my art.  Here are the results of my experiments! 
First up is the one called Rooz (I think it's supposed to look like a kangaroo).  I created this little guy while watching "The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus".  Watching that trippy movie, not knowing what I'm doing and painting this made for a deadly combination.  I'm not really sure what this is...boredom incarnate seems like...
That's right, there's a bird on his stomach tweeting out some tunes....

Up next is the true test of what I can do with these.  This time I decided to create Death from Neil Gaiman's graphic novels Sandman.  I used Super Sculpey for her hair, which became a headache after I pulled it out of the oven.  If I looked at it wrong it would break, so this means I had to break out the old Alene's glue.  I think I had to reattach least 5 strands of hair.  I will defiantly rethink about sculpting hair next time.
I think she turned out pretty cute...sassy look about her.  I'm the most pleased with how the paint turned out on her body.
Here's another angle:
So, what do you all think?  If you were to buy one from me, what kind of characters would you be looking for?

Monday, May 3, 2010

Munny Fun

This past weekend I went to Louisville with some friends and while I was there I picked up a Kidrobot Munny toy.  They are blank soft vinyl toy that are meant to be a D.I.Y. type of project.  I've seen other artists use these before, but I've never thought about it myself til I encountered a store in Louisville that sells all different kinds of them....some shaped like bears, cats, dogs, and the one I got that kinda looks like a kangaroo.  After looking around on line on what exactly I need to do to make this work I'm really excited about creating my own!  Here's an example that I found: 
Admiral "It's a trap!" Ackbar
Wish me luck, and I'll keep you updated on the process!  As for now, I'm off to gather supplies for the little critter. :)

Thursday, April 15, 2010


I don't know if this is always the case for most artists, but it always takes me so much longer to finish pieces that I've promised to my friends than it does for clients.  Here are just a few examples of that :)
This is a Christmas, yes you read right, present for my friend Jason (Jaysun).  I just asked him what character he would want if I were to make it realistic looking and he didn't hesitate in saying, "Terra."
Terra is a DC Comics character...she has control over the earth, hence the boulders.  This is the newer version of Terra, not to be confused with the bucktoothed Teen Titans one.  I did use a reference with this piece, which you can check out here: 
 This next one is for Jason's girlfriend Jen, and yet another tardy Christmas present.  "The Wallflower" is one of her favorite anime/mangas, and it's one of my personal favorites.  I like how this one turned out, but I think I could have done better.  The flow of it seems off to me...but then again I could be over analyzing.  I had fun though with the giant eyes and the little guys that are in "freak out mode" at the bottom.
 Last but not least is the piece that I did for my friend Richard.  Richard took a little longer to decide on what he wanted...but he eventually came back with Cyclone who is also another DC Comics character.  Cyclone's powers are flight, and air/wind manipulation and she is a part of Justice Society of America (JSA).  She's a pretty new character, and I had a TONE of fun with this one.  This piece had a lot of "firsts" for me: first time making up the hair, first time making up clothing, and first time taking a photo that inspired me and really making it my own.  The photo that I used is here:
He's got a lot of really great work...and it's pure eye candy!
So, there they are, the newest of the new.  I'm starting on pieces now that I'll be selling in Baltimore come August.  If you guys have any suggestions on what you think is buy-able, then please let girl know.  'Til the next time! :*

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Besides needing to desperately finish some portraits for some friends and having to do my taxes, I've got some exciting new projects lining up.  First of all, Danny and I have quickly grown out of our currant house, so this means time to start thinking about getting into something bigger.  There's got to be A LOT of decluttering and removal of art, collectibles, and things like bicycles (yea, you read right) that not everyone can appreciate.  Since the movie posters have to sadly come down I need to add some other type of art.  After a brief look in some decorating stores in town I decided that it would be much cheaper for me to create the art...and more fun!  I've had some canvases sitting upstairs collecting dust for years that I'm going to use for some simple acrylic art pieces.  After doing the mural for Eli I realized how much I miss painting.  Like I said before, it never hurts to take a break from doing just one thing.
The second awesome project that I've got brewing is something for my brother.  He called me the other day to tell me about a website that he's creating for t-shirts.  He's asked me to do the designs for the t-shirts!  I won't get into what exactly he's wanting to do, because it will be a nice little surprise for later.  I'm really excited about this, because it's again something new and people will be wearing my designs!
Third, my good buddy Jen has convinced me to go forth and get a booth in artist alley for an upcoming convention.  I'm going to have to put the pedal to the metal with this one, because I really need a larger collection of things for people to chose from.  Most of what I've done so far has been mostly commission work, so any suggestions from you all out there is more than welcomed....What would you buy from a "no-name" pencil portrait artist?
So, that's it for right now.  I'll keep you all updated on the progress and I'll try to post "works in progress" as I go along.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Pencil Portraits

For the past two years I have focused on pencil portraits more than anything else.  Thankfully it's gotten me a lot of work from co-works to family.  I really enjoy portraits and it feels very natural for me when I'm creating them.  Whereas before when I was working more on cartoon/comic style art it was a bit of a struggle for me, at least the way I looked at it.  I just never felt completely satisfied with my work.  Not that I'm completely satisfied with my portrait art either, but I'm more proud of it when I'm finished.  
Here are a few of my pencil portraits.  First I'll start off with two that where for family members:*Edit* I'm not sure why I can't edit this next paragraph so that it's the same font color as the please excuse the change. :)
This one was commissioned by my Aunt Rene for a Christmas gift for my Dad and Uncle.  It's a portrait of my Grandpa "back in the day" wearing his football uniform and striking a pose.  I really enjoyed making this one and I liked how it turned out.  In hindsight I wish I would have added in the background, it would have given the drawing more depth.
This next one is of my nephew J.P.  I did this for my Brother's 40th birthday present and I had the pleasure of giving it to him at my wedding rehearsal.  I've always had trouble figuring out what to get him in the past, but I didn't hesitate with this and I think he was really surprised by it.
These next two portraits are a little older and I did these for myself.
The first, the incredible Robert Downey Jr.  I chose to do this because I'm a HUGE fan of RDJ, and I have been ever since I saw 'Chaplin'.  I also figured that it would be a good study piece.  His hair was the most difficult head of hair I've ever drawn, and the closeness of his face gave me great details to focus on.

This last piece was my very first pencil portrait I have ever done.  It was shortly after the death of Heath Ledger that I came across this photo and I couldn't resist the challenge.  Ask anyone who knows me and they will let you know that I love Batman...especially Christopher Nolan's Batman films, so that was an added bonus to this project.  I'm still very proud of this piece because I think his clothing turned out beautifully.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Mural For Eli

My best friend Amy is having her first baby soon...very soon, and she asked me to do a mural for the nursery.  I, of course, was more than happy to do this.  I've really only done one other mural in my life (at my parent's house), but I've worked a lot with acrylics, so wasn't too nervous about the project.  It was still a good sized undertaking, but I was up for the challenge.  Out of all my works, be it portraits or paintings, this has got to be in my top five favorites.  I really love the way it turned out and I think Amy and her husband John were more than pleased with it.  Before starting the mural, Amy gave me her idea of having the two trees on either side of the crib and then she gave me some references for the little woodland critters.  The animals are actually on Eli's bedding, rug, window valence, and all the other cute things you need for a baby's new room.  After that info she let me run with it, and here are the results!!
A couple details put together:
 There it is!!!  I really hope that Eli loves it as much as I do!  Hopefully this will also generate more commissions for murals as well, because taking a break from pencil can be really nice sometimes. ^-^

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Little New To This

Hello all!!!  Welcome to BirdieboArt!  I've created this blog as another means to get my art "out there".  I've been contributing to another blog lately that's run by my good friend Jen.  I mainly do movie reviews and articles about art.  I really love contributing to her blog and I thought, "I really need to start one of my own, but that focuses mainly on my art!"  So here I am!  Like the title says, I'm new to this, so these first few posts are going to be wonky :)  Please bare with me!  
Anywho, for my first post I'll be sharing my latest commission.  My best friend sent this one my way.  It's on a typical photo sized Strathmore Bristol vellum paper.  It's all in Staedtler pencil, ranging from 2H to 3B.  I really like the way this one turned out, especially with the ocean in the background.
There it is my first post!  Short and sweet.  Also if you would like to check out Jen's blog, which I highly recommend you do, here's the link: