Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Busy Spaces - People Come and People Go

 Since October 2017, I have been drawing/painting something every day.  This began as a one month challenge, but as October 2017 finished, I realized I was NOT finished, and have continued since.  The art takes many forms, but I carry a 5 x 8" Moleskine watercolor book with me everywhere, and draw what I see.  I love capturing the busyness of the street, a restaurant, theater, stadium, park.... and it  has become a daily meditation, whether 15 minutes or several hours.  Here are some examples of these sketches.  You can follow me on Instagram at @jodypaints to see my daily work.  

"Local Restaurant" ink & marker

"Local Yarn Store Joy" ink & watercolor at Boston Fiber Company

"Company" ink & marker at the Boston Opera House

"Treasure Hunting" at Clift Rodgers Consignment Shop

"Treasure Hunting" in progress

"MLK Concert" in progress at Symphony Hall, Boston

"MLK Concert" at Boston Symphony Hall with Boston Children's Chorus

"Lunch at the Bar" at Ocho Cafe in Weymouth, MA

"Lunch at the Bar" at Ocho Cafe in Weymouth

"Coffee with a Friend" at Red Eye Roasters 

"Iowa Hawkeyes" at Rutgers with Caitlin Clark 

"Pause for a Pint" at Sam Adams Brewery

"Pre-Theater" at Sip Wine Bar, Boston

"Pause While Shopping" at Uva Wine Bar in Plymouth

Thursday, February 29, 2024

Boston in 100 Words - Illustrating East Boston

Boston in 100 Words is an annual flash fiction event inviting local authors of all ages to submit essays of 100 words or less depicting life in their communities. I follow them on Instagram, so "raised my hand" when I saw a call for illustrators for the year's winning essays.  I love Boston, paint frequently in the city, and was interested in the challenge.  I was assigned an essay, and given a 7-day deadline.  Exciting! Turns out my essay was about East Boston... about which I knew very little.  So, a research trip, some design sketches, and off we went. 

 I loved the puzzle of putting together an illustration that did this lovely essay justice. What a fascinating place is East Boston (and how remiss have I been to just begin discovering it).  We found the Madonna, Queen of the Universe Shrine, pictured in the distance in my illustration.  Fascinating!  There are four floors built into the hillside including an underground chapel, and grotto. 

Here is the text of the winning essay, and some photos..as always, thanks for looking.  You know I love your comments.

Across the River


I was born across the river, but I’m an Eastie kid through and through. Walking down the streets, you can hear folks from all over speaking languages ranging from Spanish to Vietnamese, and the older crowd chatting from their balconies in Italian. The aroma of arroz con pollo as you walk through town is enough to die, or rather, to live for. The rich sense of community everywhere—whether it’s a smile from someone you’ve never met, waving at someone from church, or spotting a primo de un primo who you haven’t seen in years—makes you feel warm and safe inside. 


Banner at Grove Hall Library

Turns out my essay was written by a 12 year old young woman!  I was so surprised.  The language is beautiful and its rhythm sophisticated. 

 Boston in 100 Words held an award ceremony at the Boston Public Library.  I was invited as one of the thirteen illustrators and anyone who wrote an essay was invited.  The thirteen banners were hung backwards, and the winning essays revealed one at a time.  It was a thrill for all those writers attending. There was even a class of 4th graders present!   Boston in 100 words is asking for submissions for this year's contest.  Maybe you will participate.  


Madonna, Queen of the Universe Shrine - 35' tall!

At the BPL Award Ceremony

Some process Photos, in random order.