2021 Art — an incomplete survey

An illustration from one of the illustrated stories for certain supporters on patreon.com/tanaudel

This post is a non-exhaustive round-up of this year’s art — projects published, projects completed, things I can’t show or can only discuss indirectly, and so on. Images link to posts, where they exist.

It’s quite long, because of the images, so if you’re reading on the blog, the rest is below this cut:

Continue reading

December 2021 — round-up of posts

Happy new year!

Here is quick master list of the December 2021 blog posts (not including Patreon posts).

Posts over on Patreon, at various tiers, included: a printable booklet of colouring pages from the calendars, some Daleks engaging in public transportation, writing updates, tv sketching, glimpses of personal projects (including the first notice of the Twitter bot I’ve been tinkering with, @girlfleeshouse), a rather large digital booklet of 2021’s TV sketches, and (for those who receive stories) a PDF zine of advice for girls fleeing houses.

Note: If you’d like to support art and writing and posts like these about it, patrons at (patreon.com/tanaudel) get behind-the-scenes process and sneak-peeks, starting from US$1, or you could buy me a (virtual) coffee or two at ko-fi.com/tanaudel (and I get through quite a bit of coffee).

2021 writing update

Non-fiction:

Fiction:

Blog:

Work in progress:

  • I’m working on another book! This has taken up the majority of this year’s writing time. I’m endeavouring to get the third draft done before Christmas. It’s a Gothic suburban tale.
  • As ever, I’m trying to shape a voluminous manuscript into something approximating a novel, and researching for my PhD project.
  • I’ve written several short stories of varying length, a few of which will be out next year (one is a prequel to the PhD novel).
  • I’ve been learning how to adapt someone else’s book for another project…
  • The observation journal is still going strong. I’d hazard it’s at approximately 235 entries for the year, which will evolve into blog posts, workshops, articles, stories, art, etc.

Shortlistings and awards

  • Flyaway won a 2021 British Fantasy Award (Sydney J Bounds Award) for best newcomer, and a 2021 Ditmar Award for best novella.
    It was also shortlisted for the 2021 World Fantasy Award (best novella) and The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award. It was a finalist for the 2020 Australian Shadows Award finalist and the 2020 Crawford Award.
  • “Contracts and Calcifer, or “In Which A Contract Is Concluded Before Witnesses”: the Transactional Structure of Howl’s Moving Castle“ (published in 2020 in the The Proceedings of the Diana Wynne Jones Conference, Bristol 2019) was shortlisted for the William Atheling Jr Award for Criticism or Review.

2021 summaries — workshops, lectures, panels

I took a break from regular class tutoring this year in order to meet art and writing deadlines, and also it was, well, 2021, so this was a fairly quiet year on the workshop front. However it is virtually impossible to get me to shut up, and I did have the opportunity to present workshops to some excellent people.

I’ve linked to posts about the workshops. This list is subject to update, because I’m sure there were more panels.

Pen drawings with bits of maps, clouds, compass roses. A sheep on a solitary island with "Map of the Last Lonely Island". A stag running down a beach with a label that leads to "Elsewhere".

Workshops and lectures

Photo: State Library of Queensland

Conferences, panels, readings, sketchings

All the 2021 calendar pages

Every month (with the support of patrons) I make a printable (and colour-able) calendar page.

And here are all the pages of monthly 2021 calendar art in one place! I’m always a little startled to get to the end of a year and remind myself how much I drew during the year just making these, let alone… everything else. (Here’s the 2020 collection.) I’ve put the individual pages larger at the bottom of this post.

My favourite calendar page keeps shifting. I do very much like the July houses because of the different approach, and the frogs from May because they look velvety. But then the April fairy-tale motifs ended up inspiring the cover design for WQ Magazine. And the fish and waves from February got into two separate projects (illustrations for a secret book and a map for a book that is yet to be announced). But March’s rondels and April’s motifs have proved useful demonstrations for writing workshops.

Then the houses were a useful sampler of styles, but also research for something I’m illustrating and another piece I’m writing (and my mother wanted the line drawing for quilt backing). And all of them were places to try out approaches to surface patterns, or altered techniques, or new tools. And the chairs have been a long time coming, and the chicken-legged houses amuse me…

Note: Want to support the arts? This calendar is made possible by patrons, who get it a little bit early, along with other sneak-peeks and behind-the-scenes art (patron levels start at very low amounts!): patreon.com/tanaudel. It is also supported by those very kind people who throw a few dollars towards it via the tip jar: ko-fi.com/tanaudel. And many of these designs are available as prints, clothes, cases, etc on Redbubble, as fabrics and wallpaper on Spoonflower, and as prints in InPrnt

And below are all the designs, larger:

Continue reading

November 2021 — round up of posts

Mother Thorn process posts

Here is quick master list of the November blog posts (not including Patreon posts). This was an exciting month, in which my computer AND brakes died, but I still managed to finish the second draft of a book(?!).

Mother Thorn sketches

The starred posts have art and writing exercises (tags: writing exerciseart exercise), but most of the observation journal posts can generally be adapted for those purposes too.

o no

Posts over on Patreon, at various tiers, included: seaside photographs for desktop backgrounds, printable chicken stationery, early access to the interview with Juliet above, more observation journal pages, updates on a graphic novel project (in its very early days), a tiny tigerish story, a nocturnal Dalek, a larger hi-res colouring version of the December calendar art, and stationery motifs drawn from that art, as well as early access to the calendar.

Colour and texture layers from the December calendar

Note: If you’d like to support art and writing and posts like these about it, patrons at (patreon.com/tanaudel) get behind-the-scenes process and sneak-peeks, starting from US$1, or you could buy me a (virtual) coffee or two at ko-fi.com/tanaudel (and I get through quite a bit of coffee).

A snippet. I’m gradually stockpiling Daleks again — they’ll escape containment eventually.

October 2021 — round up of posts

Here is quick master list of the October blog posts (not including Patreon posts).

The starred posts have art and writing exercises (tags: writing exerciseart exercise), but most of the observation journal posts can generally be adapted for those purposes too.

Posts over on Patreon, at various tiers, included: updates on the next book-in-progress, a gaudy Dalek, early glimpses of stationery, more Observation Journal pages, advance looks at interviews, and early access to the calendar.

Note: If you’d like to support art and writing and posts like these about it, patrons at (patreon.com/tanaudel) get behind-the-scenes process and sneak-peeks, starting from US$1, or you could buy me a (virtual) coffee or two at ko-fi.com/tanaudel (and I get through quite a bit of coffee).

S1E3: “This Promised End”

September 2021 — round up of posts

Here is quick summary of the September blog posts (not including Patreon posts).

The starred posts have art and writing exercises (tags: writing exerciseart exercise), but most of the observation journal posts can generally be adapted for those purposes too.

Posts over on Patreon, at various tiers, included: resources from a guest lecture, advance glimpses of silhouettes, sneak-peeks at a project in progress, stationery (manicules!), and a Dalek-ish take on Heyer.

 Note: If you’d like to support art and writing and posts like these about it, patrons at (patreon.com/tanaudel) get behind-the-scenes process and sneak-peeks, starting from US$1, or you could buy me a (virtual) coffee or two at ko-fi.com/tanaudel (and I get through quite a bit of coffee).

August 2021 — round-up of posts

Here is quick summary of the August blog posts (not including Patreon posts).

The starred posts have art and writing exercises (tags: writing exerciseart exercise), but most of the observation journal posts can generally be adapted for those purposes too.

Posts over on Patreon, at various tiers, included: art workshop reports, sneak-peeks of illustrations in progress, bits of projects yet to be released, thoughts on bells, and advance views of observation journal pages (and some art sent out to a few supporters).

Note: If you’d like to support art and writing and posts like these about it, patrons at (patreon.com/tanaudel) get behind-the-scenes process and sneak-peeks, starting from US$1, or you could buy me a (virtual) coffee or two at ko-fi.com/tanaudel (and I get through quite a bit of coffee).

Observation Journal — a sequence of week-in-review pages

Here is a series of end-of-week summary pages from the observation journal. (I wrote about the structure of the summary pages here: reflections and summaries.)

It’s useful having these pages, both to catch big ideas at the end of each week and to look back on them much later, following the little growing fascinations, the recurring epiphanies, the big and little moods, the lessons I did learn and the ones I won’t.

For example, this time I notice that apparently I like these shades of green. (Previously on colours.)

The same goes for the “Things to Do” page: it’s more a list of possibilities than actual tasks, so there are items that are carried forward week to week until they suddenly turn into a project (I did finally order the foil cards), and ones that get set aside, or are written off but suddenly roar back into my field of vision a year later, or are just there as a reminder to keep in mind.

So below is a five-week run of summary pages, with some of the points that now seem most interesting to me extracted.

Week-in-review c 25 April 2020
  • 2020 effectively squashed most of my domestic urges.
  • While the journal is great for writing blog posts, this blog is also one of the things that keeps me reviewing the journal.
  • The (useful, if I act on it) frustration of not making things, whether because of admin commitments or because I’m just splashing around coming up with ideas.
Week-in-review c 2 May 2020
  • I like colour! I do so much linework I need to remind myself of this. It also makes the journal more of a pleasing object to keep and review.
  • The playful aspects of the journal do get into more formal projects.
  • The power of unlikely abrupt intense proximities for creating stories.
  • The joy of being silly when classifying things.
  • The charm of specificity.
Week-in-review c 9 May 2020
  • How much easier everything is if I (am legally allowed to) leave the house for some portion of the day.
  • The effect of a shape on a story.
  • Relatedly, making space for a thing to happen makes it more likely to happen.
  • Flipping and hypothetically remixing a story (my own or others’) is a way to take charge of an idea.
  • How characterisation works when it is done by creating sympathy for a character off the page. (Related, or at least I should link the ideas: Sympathy for characters)
Week-in-review c 16 May 2020
  • Going outside is nice but I have enormous difficulties achieving escape velocity. (My whole family does. I used to have volcano-and-bushfire nightmares in which we kept having to rush back into the house to get things we’d forgotten… thanks Children’s World Book Encyclopaedia and assorted Ash Wednesday bushfire novels.)
  • The charm of playing something (even the magical/unlikely) very straight and low-key. (I think this was prompted by murder mysteries.)
  • I’m more likely to get editing done if I just keep tinkering my way into the story than if I start with some strategic plan.
  • Key ideas (this reference-story, that painting as a visual key) are very useful for narrowing editing choices.
  • Doing something, and keeping on doing it, even in small ways, reduces later bars to entry.
  • The extreme usefulness of tentative mock-solutions. (Not closely related, but not unrelated: ten terrible things.)
Week-in-review c 23 May 2020
  • Changing ONE thing in an idea (varying one character in a story, picking one colour note to commit to), and then following the consequences, is sometimes more interesting than flipping everything.
  • The power of definiteness in first lines. (Staring at sentences; First sentences.)
  • Reading is a necessary and relevant part of the job!
  • The pull that a strong aesthetic exerts both on the story being written and on the reader, to pull them into it. (If the reader is me: aesthetic posts).
  • Perhaps not unrelated to the above: how many of my favourite first lines highlight a setting more than a character.

Note: If you’d like to support art and writing and posts like this about it, I have a Patreon account (patreon.com/tanaudel) and patrons there get behind-the-scenes process and sneak-peeks, starting from US$1, or you could buy me a (virtual) coffee at ko-fi.com/tanaudel (and I get through quite a bit of coffee — or I will once we get out of lockdown again!).