Other Panda Worlds

Sunday, March 3, 2013

On My Way Home collaboration project

Hey up ahead. I wonder if you knew
I’d see you. Through an aperture of heart,
And shutter in her mind, the both of you.
I’d see you leave, and say goodnight, then start
A ripple in the shadows as you walked,
And slough away a still-warm crust of night,
As bits of skin. She followed, while you talked
Of nothing, this or that, she hungered. Light
Was all you gave her. Gath’ring it with greed,
Collecting it from sidewalk crack, and star,
For just a while she satisfied a need
And captured you, then slept. And here you are,
A bit ahead, and just beyond the light,
Forever walking home that winter night.

Painting Before Bed written by Christian Hege
"On My Way Home" illustrated by Panda Erica (yours truly)

Hey Panda People,

I'm reposting this small 2"x2" watercolor sketch I did a few weeks ago of a cute couple I saw walking on my way back home. A lovely sonnet has been written to accompany it written by my new friend, Christian, whom I met at the SCBWI winter conference in early February. I hope to collaborate on fun little projects like this with him again in the future. Well written text just goes so well with a well placed illustration. Don't you think so? :]

Love, Erica

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Maladventures Without Heat

This past week we've been without heat and hot water. It's been fairly chilly here in NYC, could be worse. . . but it's been tough. 

I feel like it all started with the radiator in  my room. And me desperately trying to fight off these nose bleeds I've been having due to the stuffiness of my little room and this massively HOT radiator chugging away, basically BAKING me in my sleep. I've been waking up with nose bleeds and dry skin around my eyes this past month. I never get nosebleeds. EVER. (But that may be due in part because I was born and raised in sunny, warm, moist Florida.)

So I've literally only taken 2 showers this whole week. Not TOO bad in normal circumstances. You can get away with bad hygiene habits as long as you have strong deodorant and nice perfume. Plus it's winter, you're bundled up anyways, no need to shave. (Heehee.) 
But these baths consist of me boiling a large pot of water and then commencing to use a small pail to wash my hair and very QUICKLY rinse my body with. 

And to make the week more uncomfortable and unbearable, our microwave decided to stop working. . .
Thus having to heat up leftovers on the stovetop. . . 

But thankfully God said that we could have heat again. And so there was heat. I just had the MOST blissful shower I have ever had. Word to the wise, don't complain about having HEAT in the winter time. God spurns you. Lesson learned. 


Love, Erica
ps. Maybe I'll come back to these and color them up? Possibly.  

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Jesus In India

Hi Panda People,

I watched an off broadway theater production of Jesus In India last week with an old friend. The production was put on by Mayi Theater Company NYC and it was at the St. Clement's Church. I haven't gone to see a semi musical indie theatre production since I was in high school. I used to be an active theater goer as my high school and many of my friends were amazing actors/singers/actresses/comedians/etc. The actors were amazing, the writing/dialogue was witty and HILARIOUS. 

I'll give you a short narrated synapsis of the production. The play covers the years of Jesus' life that are not captured in the bible. So after he goes to the temple as a kid and proclaims God to be his dad but BEFORE he starts performing any miracles. So he's roughly in his adolescent to early 20's years.:
Jesus runs away with a girl named Abigail. They get mad at each other and JEsus takes the camel and leaves Abigail in the desert. He meets GoPal and they talk about doing things and seeing the world and shit.

Abigail gets picked up by one of Jesus' new friends' slave, Mehari. Abigail mistakes Mehari for Mother Mary whom she had been writing back to about her and Jesus' whereabouts back in Galilee. 

Jesus and Mehari have a "thing" going on and Mehari gets pregnant. Jesus and his new friends GoPal and Sushil made a band and traveled all around India. They just had their best show ever but Mehari tells Jesus she's prego. So he leaves the band.  

Jesus and friends commence to hug. GoPal is really sad he has to go back to his family's farm to be a mungbean farmer. Sushil is sad because he doesn't know how to run his country. 

Abigail comes back to find Jesus after the birth of Jesus' son's birth and helps to convince Jesus to return back to Galilee with her. Jesus sings a sad song and leaves his family of friends behind. 

Jesus goes on to be the Jesus we know him to be. 

The END. 

And Goodnight!
Love, Erica

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Vampire Love. It's Complicated.

Good Evening/Early Morning Pandas,

Just had a HUGE itch to do some The Vampire Diaries fanart after watching last week's episode "Down the Rabbit Hole". Yes. I will admit to being a HUGE fan of the show; I'm addicted. I eat up the hot vampire eternal teenager romance drama. 

Well, any hoot, hope you enjoy. :] I included a sneak of the next Vampire Diaries romance illustration I want to do. Stay tuned for that one coming out soon!

Have a good night/day,

Monday, February 18, 2013

Painting Before Bed

On my way home tonight I saw a really cute couple holding hands.
A 2"x2" watercolor sketch before bedtime. :] 
Love, ERica

Sketch Dump from my outting with Caroline Hadilaksono

Hi! Late Sunday evening for posting. I just wanted to blog these sketches I did today while hanging out w/ my new friend I met through the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrator's winter con this past 2 weeks ago (which I am still intending to post my sketchbook notes from! Look forward to them soon as I get them colored!) I did some sketching in the subway, some doodling thoughts from the bathroom at Books of Wonder, and some kids sketches and quick watercolors from Strand Bookstore and Books of Wonder. hope you enjoy. These are the only pages I was willing to show. :] Some good, some bad, some just existing in my sketchbooks. 

Til next post! I'm working on some new illustrations about animals and plants and anatomy and got some Vampire Diaries fanart coming too! And some old character designs that are in the process of being colored! Lots to do and see coming soon. :]

Happy President's Day Weekend everyone! Hope you all had fun. 

Love, Erica.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Hi Pandas! I didn't do much for Valentine's Day today as my bf is in NJ and I had already spent a lovely weekend with him and his family for his bday and Chinese New Year's already. But we were watching some movies today on Netflix and the interwebs and I was inspired to create this little Valentines Day watercolor based on a scene/song from the Japanese film "Time Traveler", which is the sequel to the Japanese anime, "The Girl Who Leapt Through Time". Both of which are great. They are both down to earth, bittersweet, and have sad yet hopeful endings. Check them out if you have the time. 

And I hope you all had a fun Valentine's Day this year!

Love, Erica

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

INCURSION: Opening Night + the Final Paintings

Hi Everyone,

I'll keep this post short. Opening night, January 17, 2013 was amazing! I'm sorry to have posted these paintings so late after the actual show, but that just goes to show you that you should come out to see them in person at the gallery! Anyways, opening night was so full of people and the show was so well received. I got there 10 min after doors opened and it was literally packed to capacity. I was literally shuffling with the crowd to see the other illustrators' work too. And it was full the whole night! With the free Barney's coffee, apple crumble cake, and the open bar, it honestly felt more like a party than it did a gallery opening. 

Everyone was so friendly and willing to talk to me about my paintings. I mingled and was able to make some new artist friends too, which was basically the best part of the night. :D But if you haven't still seen the show it'll be open til February 15. CityArts Factory hours are 10AM til 6PM, Mon-SAt. 

The original paintings are for sale, each $100. They are all framed and matted, 5"x 11", watercolor and gouache. So if you're interested contact me via email first at: ericadechavez@gmail.com and then on my cell phone if you just can't wait to have them: (407) 572-7047. 

Okay that's all I've got to say. I'm preparing for the Society of Children's Book Writer's and Illustrator's Winter Conference here in Manhattan this weekend. So I'll see all you cool children's book enthusiasts there! Be sure to look out for my portfolio and dummy and print collateral at the portfolio showcase on Saturday afternoon! Can't wait to see and meet you all!

Love, Erica

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

INCURSION Final Drawings: The Process Behind The Finished Drawings

Hello again! 
Thank you all who came out to support the INCURSION: An Illustration Show this past Thurs, Jan. 17th at The Orlando CityArts Factory. I could not have even begun to imagine how well received it was going to be! There were so many people out opening night, it honestly felt like a big party rather than a gathering a an art gallery. Thank you to all my friends and family who came to support me and my art, I cannot thank you enough, every hug and every word of congratulations helped to fuel my sleep deprived and weary mind and body. And to all who were new faces who took an interest in my artwork and took the time to talk to me that night, thank you too and I hope that you continue to take a great interest in my art and my work in the future!

For now I'd like to talk more about my processes that lead me to the final paintings that you all saw that night. Here are the final drawings that I did for the paintings. It seems rather tedious and very detail oriented and at times I even felt that maybe it was a little TOO time consuming. But in the end, I was again satisfied with how much time I put into the planning of how things would look and feel and how the character would all come into play with the storytelling of this mini-series of paintings. 
All of the drawings were done with simple graphite pencils (HB, 2B, 4B, 6B, 8B, and an Ebony pencil).

But even before I got to this point in my final drawings, much more planning, downscaling, and thought went into them such as a list of feelings, words, and lists of descriptive adjectives that I wanted to convey through the paintings. I started with the quote that inspired me to do these paintings first and worked from there. Then I proceeded to spew out the thought into very rough thumbnails with no real regard to format, consistency, and thought of what things, places, and characters would look like. It's really just to get all the good, the bad, and the ugly out of the way.

Now before I could move further into refining the sketches I knew I had to get a good, final look to the main characters of the story: the princess in the palace, the princess after she ran away, the princess in the forest, the owl boy, and the princess' stewardesses. 

I drew inspiration from video games, animated movies, and old children's picture books I owned/read when I was young to form the final look of the character. Then after this I refined my initial thumbnail drawings into a more uniform format, consistent dimensions and and more stylized themes that I wanted to appear throughout the series (leaves, trees, reappearing owls, architecture). I tried to make each painting as diverse in lighting, time of day, and setting from each other as possible and so my original 9 sketches got narrowed down to 6 paintings that I felt would move the story along at a quick, even pace throughout each painting.

More WIP and process work to come!

Love, Erica.
P.S. If you're in Orlando, FL. the INCURSION show is still up at The CityArts Factory until February 15 , so be sure to stop by and see the show. There are 19 other amazing local illustrators that really made the show so diverse and inspiring. The gallery hours are 11 AM - 6 PM , 7 days a week @ 29 South Orange Avenue, Orlando, FL.