Friday, March 9, 2018

Mama Mia! Make Way for the M's!

Two days straight of blogging, two days straight of pages for the ABC Book.  Will wonders never cease?!

If you stopped by here yesterday, you saw the completed L pages--along with some of the old artwork that I figured out how to re-purpose for them.  Today's M pages contain all original artwork, but I'll show you where I got my inspiration for these new drawings.

I wanted to include a mouse, because I love mice (in theory, that is; not when I am faced with them in real life, scurrying around our basement).  And I just happened to have this photo of one that I painted on the wall in our NH house (and then, sadly, had to paint over for the new owners when we sold it a year ago!).  I came really close to using this image over, to save time, but then decided the page I was working on needed an original colored pencil-and-ink drawing instead.
Furthermore, I knew I had to include Our Blessed Mother, Mary (the greatest M of all time), in these pages, but I procrastinated forever, because I just couldn't figure out how I wanted to draw Her.  In my opinion, it was the most important illustration in the whole book, and I didn't want to mess it up.  There are so many beautiful images of Mary from which to draw inspiration, and I couldn't make up my mind about how I wanted Her to look in this book.

Well, we moved to VA about a year ago, and there is a lovely statue of Mary holding the Child Jesus up on a side altar in our new parish church; so I decided that I would try to mimic that image (to the best of my amateur artistic ability).  It seemed to be calling out, "Use me."

Here is that statue, the one I see every Sunday at Mass:
Now, bearing in mind that what I end up with doesn't always look like what I have in my mind's eye when I get started, here are the M pages.

I may have to go back and touch that second one up, make it more vivid, because sometimes when I scan my drawings the colored pencil shading I use for the skin gets kind of washed out.   But otherwise, these two pages are ready to go to print.

If I ever do finish this book (and I am determined now that I will!), my plan is to have it printed so that I can give gift copies to my grandkids.  But one of my daughters-in-law (the wife of son #3) is convinced that she could help me sell them. When she told me this the other day, I kind of laughed and said, "Silly girl, my books don't sell!"  But she assures me that she thinks there is a market for this one.  She has a large number of Facebook and Instagram friends (not to mention IRL friends!), social media-savvy young Catholics who might be willing to help me spread the word.  So we shall see, my friends.  We shall see...

Just in case, perhaps I should stop publishing all the pages here at the blog.  But I'll be sure to post peeks at future pages now and again, for those of you who are interested.  (And if you are, thank you so much.  My readers may not be legion, but they're the best!)


  1. I want one!! I've been saying that for a long time! :) Looks good!!

    1. Thank you so much! <3

      I was not completely satisfied with how Mary came out. I don't think there's any way I could have been--because how can anyone possibly do Her justice? But she's an understanding Mother, and I'm sure She appreciates the effort! :)

  2. I agree with your daughter in law! There are lots of young, Catholic mama’s with lots of young babies who are looking for books like this one. Sign me up, too. ;-) But, really. It’s so hard to find children’s books that are simple, educational and ones that include Mama Mary and Jesus. I am loving your book! Your grands will love it.

    1. Thanks, Gabriela! I really hope they do.

      Part of me wishes I’d done it as an all-Catholic ABC book, but I just couldn’t resist having plenty of animals in there. My boys loved them and so do their kids. But I thought I could at least make sure to have some Catholic imagery included here and there.

  3. Hey you still have plenty of letters to go, to include catholic content. R-rosary, P-Eucharistic procession,S-your favorite Saint, sacred heart of Jesus, T- tabernacle, V- votive candle.....

  4. You're so talented, this whole book is so cute!