Tuesday, November 30, 2010

old man

one-line pen & ink drawing w/color pencils 

Lighten the load - It is time to vote for this week's Wizard of Whimsy - you are allowed two votes...come and pick a favorite from the week's submissions (voting is open today until 10pm US Central Time): 

click here to be taken to the Web of Whimsy... 

Sunday, November 28, 2010


some simple pen and ink/color pencil doodles for this week's prompt at Illustration Friday
I'm using it for Sunday Sketches & AEDM too...

Also, come and add your art for Whimsical Wednesday 

Saturday, November 27, 2010


for this week's prompt at Illustration Avenue

one-line pen & ink drawing

Also, come and add your art at The Web of Whimsy's Whimsical Wednesday - birth that child within!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

the jackelope

found this with my brother as we were down in our grandfather's basement...opened the closet door where he stores his wood for the fire and was greeted by the jackelope:

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


one-line pen & ink drawing w/Inktense pencils
When Giddyup was a little pup
his hair was blue and yellow
but then he washed with seaweed pulp
and now he's a bald old fellow.

Come and see more whimsy @ The Web of Whimsy
join in the play of Whimsical Wednesday
click here to fall in the rabbit hole...

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

a simple tree

for AEDM Day 23
one-line pen and ink w/color pencils

Sunday, November 21, 2010


a quick sketch for Sunday Sketches

She's lithe and wispy
and a little bit tipsy -

dandelions better beware,
for they are her standard fare.

good ol' Joe

one-line pen & ink w/Inktense pencils 

Farmer Joe is looking blue,
the cows are milked
but I think he's through.
Would ya mind if he came with you?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Listen to the whimsy...

Over at Web of Whimsy I got two new links today that I thought I would invite you to enjoy:

Come and add your whimsical links - more here

The Magic Finger, Roald Dahl w/Illustrations by William Pene Du Bois

5 stars
Harper & Row (1966), 41 pages

I was over at the elementary school this past week and I had a half hour to space - randomly grabbed this book of the shelf and I must say it was time well spent (got the whole thing read in that short time). I love Dahl's books and this was a welcome treasure - very fun and bazaar - you really have to watch out when you have a magic finger.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Whimsical Wednesday

Visit the new Whimsical Wednesday site here: http://dthaase.blogspot.com/

I have created a site just for the whimsy! So, come on over and join in the play - also, make sure you check out the "more whimsy" tab at the top of that blog and add to the growing lists.

Come on over and post something (new or old) and join in the web of whimsy!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

electric eel

What's the deal with the electric eel?
He's not plugged in but his charge is real.

A Whimsical Wednesday & Inspiration Avenue post

Sunday, November 14, 2010


Illustration Friday prompt: burning

one-line pen and ink drawing w/Inktense pencils

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Dallas Clayton is someone you should know...

I came across Clayton's website today and wanted to spread the word - it's a wonderful invitation to dream (this book would make a great Christmas gift for some kidos)

Here's a brief video that takes you through the story about the book that changed his life:

Awesome Book Tour from Dallas Clayton on Vimeo.


Here is his newest release:

An Awesome Book of Thanks! from Dallas Clayton on Vimeo.

a medieval bestiary

our home schooling adventures have led us to the Middle Ages and a look at medieval bestiaries - I gave the boys a prompt to create a watercolor splotch and then create their own creature (got the idea from this fun site)...I had to join in as well - here were the results:

The Curmudgeon
by dad (age 34 years young)

The curmudgeon is a beast of night,
one-handed, and a gruesome sight.
With vorpal sword in hand he'll strike—
then rides away on his bike.

The Fleingks
by Chris (age 11)

The fleingks is a rare creature. His liver grows at the full moon. If you can catch the fleingks it will give you its magical tongue that can grant you any wish you want but it can drive a man mad because it makes this noise: iiioiiioiiiohhheeed.

Big Bird by Chris

by Ben (age 8)

Fluffy Bubbles is a dog. Every third Friday in the month of June Fluffy Bubbles turns into a german shepherd (awesome). [editors note: the rest of the story is written backwards (or at least each word is backwards but in the right order) because everyone knows that is what dog language is like]. tub nehw eh denrut kcab ni ot a god eh steg a der tod dna fi uoy ekat ti uoy lliw niw 000,000,1$.

Also, here is a great site for exploring a historical bestiary of animals in the middle ages

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Whimsical Wednesday wk 1:

Put some whimsy in the world

What is Whimsical Wednesday & how can I play?

one-line pen and ink drawing of a glump

The glump, he is a fishy fiend;
he’s mostly hollow but filled with mean.

Even though he’s the size of a nut;
he’ll start with your toe and eat you all up.

A Whimsical Wednesday wondering:

If I say the color green
what color in your mind is seen?
And if you truly do see green,
why’s that green the one that’s seen?

share your whimsy by adding your link:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

What is "whimsy"? send in your answers:

a Whimsical Wednesday pre-post!

Ok, I got a great question today from Gumnut (click to check out her art).

So, whimsical wizards of the blogoshpere:
"What exactly makes a piece whimsey?"

First off - you might have noticed the two spellings above: "whimsy" and "whimsey" - see how fun this is already, two spellings (both acceptable).

The New Oxford American Dictionary definition:
whimsy |ˈ(h)wimzē| (also whimsey)
noun ( pl. -sies or -seys)
playfully quaint or fanciful behavior or humor : the film is an awkward blend of whimsy and moralizing.
• a whim.
• a thing that is fanciful or odd : the stone carvings and whimsies.
ORIGIN early 17th cent. (in the sense [caprice] ): probably based on whim-wham .:

whimsical |ˈ(h)wimzikəl|
1 playfully quaint or fanciful, esp. in an appealing and amusing way : a whimsical sense of humor.
2 acting or behaving in a capricious manner : the whimsical arbitrariness of autocracy.
whimsicality |ˌ(h)wimziˈkalitē| noun
whimsically |-ik(ə)lē| adverb

WHAT DO YOU SAY? Leave your definition/answer as a comment below and I will collect them and post them with links to your illos next week!

Thanks for playing.


Sunday, November 7, 2010

Introducing Whimsical Wednesday

This is a weekly challenge I have created for myself and any who would like to join. The common human experience is suffering - sorrow and sadness mark much of the world. My invitation is to bring a bit of delight into the despair. I spend a lot of time with children and in turn they have taught me how to play. So, come and join the play. Each week I will post some whimsy on Wednesday and I invite you to share your own whimsical creations (any medium). Simply post your link in the magical widget of the Wednesday post (like the one below - you don't need to leave a comment). For more info, click on the WHIMSICAL WEDNESDAY tab at the top left of the blog or simply click here.

add your link if you would like:

The Lady in #6

Alice, the oldest survivor of the Holocaust & the power of music... (take 12min out of your life and be inspired):

try this link if the player doesn't work

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Beowulf: A Verse Translation, translated by Seamus Heaney

5 stars
Norton Critical Edition, 2002 (256 pages)

This is epic! A wonderfully crafted tale that has stood the test of time as it was first recorded sometime between the 8th and early 11th century - how many books today will still be around 1000 years from now? This edition also has a plethora of critical essays for those who would like to probe the story further (the actual tale is only 78 pages). I read this to my boys as part of our medieval ages study this semester and during the last couple of chapters I invited them to depict an illustration from the story - you can see those below!

Here was my favorite passage from the story. The scene: Beowulf has just come back from killing Grendel's mother and King Hrothgar offers him these words of wisdom (words we would do well to heed in our modern times):
"So learn from this and understand true values. I who tell you have wintered into wisdom. It is a great wonder how Almighty God in His magnificence favors our race with rank and scope and the gift of wisdom; His sway is wide. Sometimes He allows the mind of a man of distinguished birth to follow its bent, grants him fulfillment and felicity on earth and forts to command in his own country. He permits him to lord it in many lands until the man in his unthinkingness forgets that it will ever end for him. He indulges his desires; illness and old age mean nothing to him; his mind is untroubled by envy or malice or the thought of enemies with their hate-honed swords. The whole world conforms to his will, he is kept from the worst until an element of overweening enters him and takes hold while the soul's guard, its sentry, drowses, grown too distracted. A killer stalks him, an archer who draws a deadly bow. And then the man is hit in the heart, the arrow flies beneath his defenses, the devious promptings of the demon start. His old possessions seem paltry to him now. He covets and resents; dishonors custom and bestows no gold; and because of good things that the Heavenly Powers gave him in the past he ignores the shape of things to come. Then finally the end arrives when the body he was lent collapses and falls prey to its death; ancestral possessions and the goods he hoarded are inherited by another who lets them go with a liberal hand. O flower of warriors, beware of that trap. Choose dear Beowulf, the better part, eternal rewards. Do not give way to pride. For a brief while your strength is in bloom but it fades quickly; and soon there will follow illness of the sword to lay you low, or a sudden fire or surge of water or jabbing blade or javelin from the air or repellent age. Your piercing eye will dim and darken; and death will arrive, dear warrior, to sweep you away." (45-46)



Friday, November 5, 2010

Sam the clam

one-line pen and ink

Here sits Sam, the sulking clam—
His friendships all go south
when he puts his foot inside his mouth.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

weedy seadragon

response to the "happiness is..." prompt @ Inspiration Avenue

one-line pen and ink w/color pencils

I first saw one of these grand creatures at the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga - it was like a Dr. Seuss character was motorvating right in front of my eyes - pure happiness.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Glint’s a beast of enormous size;
though his brain is small,
his heart is wise.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Tuesday creativity:

Today the boys were asked to gather items from nature in light of the following prompt: It was a dark day and out of the swamp there appeared...

The Evil Pumpkin by Chris (age 11)
It was a dark day and out of the swamp there appeared a pumpkin that could talk. But it was evil. So, one day it decided to play a trick on people. It would hit them with a shovel. One time the pumpkin hit a wizard with the shovel and he got mad. The wizard had a flock of birds attack the pumpkin but the pumpkin hit them off with his shovel. When the wizard saw that did not work he threw fire at the pumpkin but the pumpkin breathed on it. His breath was so bad that the fire died away. Then the wizard made it rain and it melted the pumpkin away.

The Uckygpee (pronounced "ug-ee" - most of the letters are silent) by Ben (age 8)
It was a dark day and out of the swamp there appeared a Uckygpee. A long, long time before there was a yellow-footed rock wallaby and a red-legged pademelon the Uckygpee was king; high king. He ruled over 1,000,100,001,001,000,100,000,101 animals. He liked being king but it was hard. One day he snuck out of the castle into a swamp full of scary creatures like the angler and football fish. There were funny fish like the icefish and shortnose batfish but he wasn't scared one bit. He had an idea. He jumped out of the swamp and got a net and then went back to the swamp. He caught all the fish in the net and then the whole swamp was his.

Monday, November 1, 2010

IF: spent

This week's Illustration Friday prompt got me thinking of one of Hans Christian Andersen's famous short stories: The Little Match Girl (below my illustration you can read the complete story or watch the Disney/Pixar 6min animation of the tale)...

The Little Match Girl
A translation of Hans Christian Andersen's "Den lille Pige med Svovlstikkerne" by Jean Hersholt. from the The Hans Christian Andersen Center

It was so terribly cold. Snow was falling, and it was almost dark. Evening came on, the last evening of the year. In the cold and gloom a poor little girl, bareheaded and barefoot, was walking through the streets. Of course when she had left her house she'd had slippers on, but what good had they been? They were very big slippers, way too big for her, for they belonged to her mother. The little girl had lost them running across the road, where two carriages had rattled by terribly fast. One slipper she'd not been able to find again, and a boy had run off with the other, saying he could use it very well as a cradle some day when he had children of his own. And so the little girl walked on her naked feet, which were quite red and blue with the cold. In an old apron she carried several packages of matches, and she held a box of them in her hand. No one had bought any from her all day long, and no one had given her a cent.

Shivering with cold and hunger, she crept along, a picture of misery, poor little girl! The snowflakes fell on her long fair hair, which hung in pretty curls over her neck. In all the windows lights were shining, and there was a wonderful smell of roast goose, for it was New Year's eve. Yes, she thought of that!

In a corner formed by two houses, one of which projected farther out into the street than the other, she sat down and drew up her little feet under her. She was getting colder and colder, but did not dare to go home, for she had sold no matches, nor earned a single cent, and her father would surely beat her. Besides, it was cold at home, for they had nothing over them but a roof through which the wind whistled even though the biggest cracks had been stuffed with straw and rags.

Her hands were almost dead with cold. Oh, how much one little match might warm her! If she could only take one from the box and rub it against the wall and warm her hands. She drew one out. R-r-ratch! How it sputtered and burned! It made a warm, bright flame, like a little candle, as she held her hands over it; but it gave a strange light! It really seemed to the little girl as if she were sitting before a great iron stove with shining brass knobs and a brass cover. How wonderfully the fire burned! How comfortable it was! The youngster stretched out her feet to warm them too; then the little flame went out, the stove vanished, and she had only the remains of the burnt match in her hand.

She struck another match against the wall. It burned brightly, and when the light fell upon the wall it became transparent like a thin veil, and she could see through it into a room. On the table a snow-white cloth was spread, and on it stood a shining dinner service. The roast goose steamed gloriously, stuffed with apples and prunes. And what was still better, the goose jumped down from the dish and waddled along the floor with a knife and fork in its breast, right over to the little girl. Then the match went out, and she could see only the thick, cold wall. She lighted another match. Then she was sitting under the most beautiful Christmas tree. It was much larger and much more beautiful than the one she had seen last Christmas through the glass door at the rich merchant's home. Thousands of candles burned on the green branches, and colored pictures like those in the printshops looked down at her. The little girl reached both her hands toward them. Then the match went out. But the Christmas lights mounted higher. She saw them now as bright stars in the sky. One of them fell down, forming a long line of fire.

"Now someone is dying," thought the little girl, for her old grandmother, the only person who had loved her, and who was now dead, had told her that when a star fell down a soul went up to God.

She rubbed another match against the wall. It became bright again, and in the glow the old grandmother stood clear and shining, kind and lovely.

"Grandmother!" cried the child. "Oh, take me with you! I know you will disappear when the match is burned out. You will vanish like the warm stove, the wonderful roast goose and the beautiful big Christmas tree!"

And she quickly struck the whole bundle of matches, for she wished to keep her grandmother with her. And the matches burned with such a glow that it became brighter than daylight. Grandmother had never been so grand and beautiful. She took the little girl in her arms, and both of them flew in brightness and joy above the earth, very, very high, and up there was neither cold, nor hunger, nor fear-they were with God.

But in the corner, leaning against the wall, sat the little girl with red cheeks and smiling mouth, frozen to death on the last evening of the old year. The New Year's sun rose upon a little pathetic figure. The child sat there, stiff and cold, holding the matches, of which one bundle was almost burned.

"She wanted to warm herself," the people said. No one imagined what beautiful things she had seen, and how happily she had gone with her old grandmother into the bright New Year.