Artist around the World – blog hop.

I was asked to join the Artist around the World blog hop, by the very talented, and equally sweet Shirley Ng-Benitez whom I met during Lilla Rogers Make Art That Sells class (Mats A) in the spring. I actually knew of her way before meeting her in that class. Since I’ve been following her blog for some time. I stumbled on her blog by pure coincidence just after she started her personal challenge 365 sketches. I immediately fell in love with all her cute and whimsical characters, and looked forward to a new illustration each day.

Celebrating 365 sketches, way to go, Shirley !


When we met during The Mats class, I was thrilled to find out that she, as a person, is just as sweet as her illustrations. During the class we used each other to bounce off ideas (and frustrations) and we kept it up after the class was over – however our conversations have reached beyond just work, and a beautiful friendship has been born – Thank you for being you, Shirley.


So adorable and well done?

You can see more of Shirley’s gorgeous work at her website. She’s not only a skilled illustrator, but she does beautiful hand lettering as well.

Shirley's gorgeous hand lettering submissions for Lilla Rogers Bootcamp


I could go on and on showing Shirley’s work, but I could also just invite you to go visit her website.


And to the questions I’m supposed to answer:

1. What are you working/writing on?

At the moment I’m working on building a new portfolio, and at the same time illustrating a children’s picture book about a child with ADHD. This year has been all about reinventing myself as an artist. I’ve been taking a lot of classes, both on drawing, painting, illustrating picture books, and then the Make art that sells class. It’s been a hard and frustrating year, on some levels, but all in all, I think I’ve grown a lot as an artist since I began my journey this year.

Guitar chords for one of my favorite songs by Lucero - illustrated


2. How does my work differ from others in your genre?

I’m not really sure how to answer this question, but I think that I’m probably using my iPad a lot more in the process than most picture book illustrators. I try to add some storytelling into each piece I make, regardless if it’s surface design, wallArt or and actual picture book. I love picture books, even before I had kids I was already collecting them. I think the combination of words and pictures make a unique, and if done right, magical way of telling a story even if that story is about something everyday life. I guess that kind of magic is what I strive to put into every piece of art I make.

From my Morning coffee adventures series


3. Why do you create?

I guess I sort already answered that in the above statement. I enjoy telling stories, and loosing myself in a made up world. I guess I’ve always been using my imagination whenever I could find a moment, and by drawing I can keep on doing that and hopefully inspire others to look at life as an adventure and maybe with some magic added.


4. How does your creative process work?

I sketch a lot regardless if it’s for personal work or a client. Sometimes I sketch on my iPad in my favorite program, Procreate, and sometimes I use a pencil and paper. I start of with tiny thumbnails, and keep sketching until I have a layout that I like and feel conveys the story that I’m trying to tell in the best possible way.

Thumbnail storyboard for a picture book I'm illustrating



Then I begin to explore the characters and main objects, and when I feel I know them I start to enlarge my sketches and adding the elements. Depending on the end product, I’ll scan my sketches and either take them to illustrator or procreate on my iPad, and clean up the sketches.

Character development


During the sketching phase I think about what kind of mediums and textures would be good for that specific illustration. So after cleaning the sketch, I start making textures, which usually involves both traditional as well a digital created artwork. In the end I put everything together in the program that Serves the end result best.

….Of course when I’m working for a client, we go through client reviews at various stages of the illustration, sketches, colors, choice of mediums etc.



And enough about me….for the next artist on the blog hop, I want to introduce Sabine Reinhart – a super talented freelance illustrator and surface pattern designer, that I also met in Lilla Rogers class, Mats a. I didn’t know of Sabines work before then, but as soon as I saw her class submissions I knew I loved her work.

sabine's submission for gift marked week in Mats a


artwork done for Adobe

Aside from being a super talented artist, she’s also a highly skilled Adobe Illustrator user. Something that have let her to work for Adobe, as well as writing and creating artwork for The Adobe illustrator CS6 wow! Book by Peachpit.


Sabine contributed both artwork and tutorials for Peachpit


Sabine used to specialize in designing very sophisticated floral designs, but lately she has been exploring children’s illustration as well.



Which have let to the very charming and unique style, that can be seen in her captain Smitty illustrations, as well as in the sweet and whimsical illustrations below.

One fine fisherman

Monday crab walk

Look at those gorgeous textures!

I love the combination of painterly feel with the more vector style in this one


For more of Sabines work please visit her website