Featured Artist: Kir Talmage

“Mage Rat”

Welcome to Ellen Million Graphics’ Featured Artist of the Week! Each week (or so), we select an EMG artist and share their work and history. We hope you enjoy getting to see incredible artists this way.

This week, our spotlight picks out that artist of adorable whimsy and organic delight Kir Talmage! Kir joins us from a cabin in the woods of Vermont, where she lives among creek and fauna and forest.

She’s been creating art since she was a child drawing on the walls of her grandmother’s summer cottage, and kept up the practice for stress relief and “casual comfort” for many years as her focus stayed riveted on STEM studies. Now she embraces her art as a journey, part and parcel of the fabric of her life. She finds herself inspired by and learning from so many other illustrators, and also found her work grounded by excellent art teachers in high school and college. Some of her inspirations include the work of Trina Schart Hyman, John Bauer, Alan Lee, Brian Froud, Jill Barklem, Mary Jo Koch, and Stephanie Pui-Min Law. While she most often draws with pencil and pen, she adores watercolors, saying “I am astounded and amazed and delighted and befuddled by them.” They help her evolve as an artist. She doesn’t have much time for hobbies, but also doesn’t see a sharp delineation between her work and her play. There are always family relationships to nurture, books to read or create, hikes and outdoor activities to enjoy, and so much more as part of life. You can explore more at her website.

“Rocking the Water”
“Ocean Child”

Kir has been a friend to EMG for at least half a decade, participating in many Sketch Fests and contributing to the shared world and worldbuilding project that is Torn World. She has contributed over 100 sketches to her Sketch Fest gallery, depicting everything from a present-toting dragon and a behatted coffee-rower to a hookah-smoking unicorn and a rock-and-roll naiad. She’s also a prolific and creative prompter, leaving over 200 prompts from the simple “crab apples” to the involved “where Neverland, Neverwhere, Otherwhere and the Borderlands meet.” Over at Torn World, you can find an illustration of longfingers that she did and an article on the Dorruuyirv, a sort of polar seagoing mammal. We invite you to explore her work at EMG via the links below.

“The Song of the Twisted Tooth (a personal concert)”

Kir’s Sketch Fest gallery.
Kir’s Torn World creator page.

“Grandmother Fox Stitching Up the Stories”

The featured illustrations are:
“Ocean Child”
“Mage Rat”
“Rocking the Water”
“The Song of the Twisted Tooth (A Personal Concert)”
“Grandmother Fox Stitching up the Stories”

EMGSketchFest 99 – After Action Report!

Another #EMGSketchFest has come and gone, and we had a grand creative weekend! We had 29 participating artists and 99 sketches – which, given it was Sketch Fest #99, we feel is rather apropos. And there are 19 pieces of art available for purchase, from original full-size and ACEO sketches to limited edition prints. You should really do yourself a favor and have a whirl through our gallery if you’re in the market for some art.

We also welcomed two new artists this month: RCoots and NickyWolf!

Let’s take a final turn through some featured illustrations before putting Sketch Fest #99 to bed:

“The Curator” by Maria J. William

Inspired by Tara N Colna’s prompt “coffee time,” Maria J. William creating this alluring sketch of “The Curator.” You can purchase the graphite and white charcoal original on 8×10 toned paper for $40 or pick up some prints for $7-$10.

“Fairy’s Big Pet” by NickyWolf

NickyWolf’s first Sketch Fest drawing is the adorable and fluffy “Fairy’s Big Pet“! Here’s what they had to say this about their digital drawing: “I rarely do quick sketches so this is good practice. I hope you like it!”

“Pig Fairy” by Amy Sue Stirland

We can’t help but grin when we see Amy Sue Stirland’s 5.5×8 watercolor of a “Pig Fairy!” This wonderful when-pigs-fly what-if was inspired by Heather Kilgore, and Amy says: “I’m tickled with how the flowers turned out.” You can grab the original for only $17!

“Amethyst and Pearl” by Kim Turner

Kim Turner’s woman wearing “Amethyst and Pearl” is effortlessly elegant! Here’s what Kim says about her: “This was really a quick one, but I can imagine going back to it as a painting and bring out the pearls and amethsyt sparkles…” We hope you do, Kim!

“Strawberry Fairy” by Tricia Danby

Even in it’s partially-sketched state, Tricia Danby’s “Strawberry Fairy” has  out mouths watering for some fresh strawberries!

“Meeting” by Patricia Bowne

Patricia Bowne created this digital art sketch of a “Meeting” between water and air, inspired by Julie Rabischung’s “fairy and mermaid meeting on the beach.”

“The Littlest Mouse” by Nathalie Reinholz

This teeny tiny ACEO from Nathalie Reinholz is the cutest littlest mouse we’ve seen!

“Meditation” by Rowan Lewgalon

Rowan Lewgalon drew on Katta’s prompt of a “meditating nature sprite” to create this magical and provocative illustration. About “Meditation,” Rowan notes: “I took the background from one of my other paintings, so I could already finish this one.” You can purchase a print for just $15.

“Flowers Enchantment” by Linzi Fay

Our last featured illustration for this Sketch Fest is this lovely portrait from Linzi Fay, a delicate response to Julie Rabischung’s prompt, “Flower’s enchantment.” The original 5.5×8.5 drawing is available for purchase.

We hope you’ve enjoyed today’s set of features, and our #EMGSketchFest 99 weekend. We’re planning our 100th Sketch Fest right now and it’s going to be AMAZING – follow us on Facebook or Twitter so you don’t miss our upcoming announcement!

Enjoying Sketch Fest Sunday?

#EMGSketchFest 99 may be over, but that’s no reason to stop the party! If you wander over to the gallery, you may still find new art – and you’ll definitely find something fantastic! You may even find a piece of art to buy, and you should absolutely leave some comments for our participants!

Let’s do some featured illustrations:

“Dragon and Sleeping Fairy” by Afke van Herpt’s Cousin Susan
“Unicorn of the Sea” by Afke van Herpt and her Niece Ronja









First up, we have these great illustrations done by Afke van Herpt’s cousin and niece. “Dragon and Sleeping Fairy” by Afke’s cousin Susan is blamed on Ronja! For “Unicorn of the Sea,” Afke wrote: “My niece Ronja did another collaboration with me! I sketched the horse part, and she did all the rest.”

“Blue and Orange Stockings and the Green Dress” by Heather Kilgore

Heather Kilgore created this dancing beauty, the evocation of a summer breeze in her green dress with sand-and-sea stockings below!

“Nurse!!” by Monika Holloway

Monika Holloway is putting us all in a vaudevillian frame of mind today with her fancy-free depiction of a nurse.

“#Junicorn 16” by Ellen Million

Founder of our Sketch Fest feast, Ellen Million took Mayumi Ogihara’s prompt “Unicorn of Shadows” and ran with it to create #Junicorn 16: “I loooooved this prompt. See more details about my #junicorn project here!

“Earthdragon” by Katta

Katta went three dimensional and sculpted this adorable earth dragon, resplendent in green and showing their belly and holding on to a brown stone.

“Stardust” by Mayumi Ogihara

The glory of the night sky emerges in “Stardust” by Mayumi Ogihara. This illustration is mixed media on 7×5 toned paper, and you can even purchase the original! Just $27!

“Trinkets and Tentacles” by Natacha Chohra

Inspired by Selina Fenech’s great prompt, Natacha Chohra created this provocative and playful drawing: “Trinkets and Tentacles” is a 5×7 graphite sketch and you can purchase the original for only $40!

Untitled by Kir Talmage

Our last featured illustration for today is an untitled piece by Kir Talmage. Inspired by Edward Cammarota’s prompt, “Blue warrior women,” Kir commented that she’s “just drafting some idea” in this pencil and colored pencils sketch.

That’s it for a super-sized Sunday Sketch Fest featured set! Don’t forget to check out the full gallery, and come back here tomorrow for our After Action Report – completed with more features and our announcement for #EMGSketchFest 100!

Swords, horns, and rayguns: just another Saturday night!

Feeling a bit bored this Saturday night? Perfect reason to jump into #EMGSketchFest! Sign-up is free and you can choose either to inspire our artists, become one of those artists (create anything! it’s not just for drawing!), or both.

We’re having an amazing Saturday night, full up with a sword-wielding flower, a unicorn girl, a zero-g raygun-wielding scoundrel, colorful fairies and so much more – just check out our featured illustrations!

“Sword and Flower” by Selina Fenech

Selina Fenech spent 40 minutes creating this gorgeously atmospheric digital sketch – she used her Cintiq and Photoshop. Riffing on Mayumi Ogihara’s prompt “Sword and Flower” with this illustration, Selina commented, “I kinda forgot about the Rose part… I guess she could be the rose?” Sounds good to us! After all, a rose must have at least one thorn.

“Unicorn Girl Sketch” by Kathryn Whiteford

Kathryn Whiteford jumped in today after seeing Sarah Alden’s “Unicorngirl” prompt. Here’s what she wrote about her sketch: “After a week of writing very boring official documents, I needed some fun sketching time. Also, it’s been way too long since I took part in Sketch Fest, so here I am! 😀 This was the first prompt that really captured my attention. I’ll be adding some watercolour to this soon, but it may not be before SF ends. At least I did the sketch in time!” We’re so glad you had the time to join us, Kathryn!

“Space Girl” by Becca “Boo” Moore

We love the creative angle Becca “Boo” Moore took with her “Space Girl” illustration! Edward Cammarota prompted artists to create a “space girl doing a backflip shooting at an attacker” and this was Becca’s interpretation. “This was fun and challenging!” Becca noted. “I like the anti-gravity feel this ended up with!”

“Stone Dragon” by Jools62

We love this brief sketch of a “Stone Dragon” done by Jools62 today, inspired by Rebecca McCullough’s  prompt.

“Red Stockings, Black Dress” by Milkycat

Milkycat drew “Red Stocking, Black Dress” inspired by Edward Cammarota’s prompt, and captured a magical moment full of possibility – a sparkling backdrop, a swanky party, and a pensive expression all make you wonder what the story is here.

That’s it for tonight’s features! Now that you’re excited, don’t forget to visit the full gallery and leave some comments for our participants. Encourage someone’s creativity! And don’t forget to use our official hashtag, #EMGSketchFest, when sharing your favorite Sketch Fest moments on social media.

Welcome to Your #EMGSketchFest Saturday Afternoon!

It’s Saturday afternoon, y’all, and you know what that means – it’s another Sketch Fest Saturday! We’ve been having a grand time over in the Sketch Fest gallery, with folks sharing a belly-baring earthdrragon, unicorns galore, sexy ladies, a sleeping moon princess, and even a hippocampicorn! Don’t believe me? Take a look at the featured illustrations below and then dive in to Sketch Fest #99!

“Sun Queen” by RCoots

This is RCoots’ first Sketch Fest, and they submitted this exciting and promising sketch. Here’s what they said about “Sun Queen“: “Thought more about the sun as stars than our sun in particular. When I give this shade and color, she’ll have dark skin with stars scattered over her shoulders and solar flares as her ‘clothing’. She’s holding stars in each of the major color/temp classifications over her head.”

“sun fae” by Julie Rabischung

From Julie Rabischung: “To celebrate the opening of Sketchfest and yesterday’s Summer solstice/ First day of summer ! Thank you Heather for the lovely prompt.” Julie’s sun fae is resplendent in colored pencils, markers and ink gel pens on 4×6 bristol. The original sketch is available for only $12!

“Queen of Bees” by Kathy Nutt

Kathy Nutt’s first sketch this weekend is of a “Queen of Bees” from Julie Rabischung’s prompt, a gorgeous and sweet beginning of royal flora and fauna. This is a WIP and she uploaded a high contrast digital copy of her pencil sketch.

“Unifun Girl” by Elisa Ferguson

Unicorn girls just want to have fun, and this rainbow unicorn girl doubly so! Or, as artist Elisa Ferguson put it, “Some girls are out for fun, this girl is out for tons of it. Unicorns make everything magical.” She’s not wrong!

“Pearls and Amethyst” by ElmaBree

ElmaBree drew this quick little gem inspired by Julie Rabischung’s prompt “Pearls and Amethyst.”

That’s it for now, and we hope you enjoyed these featured illustrations! Tell the artists what you think and head on over to the Sketch Fest #99 gallery to comment on their artwork. You can also register to suggest some prompts of your own, or even get creative with us!

Just remember: when talking about Sketch Fest on social media this weekend, make sure you use our official hashtag of #EMGSketchFest! And click back to our blog later to enjoy some more featured illustrations.

Move It Creatively on #EMGSketchFest Friday Night!

Are you staying up sketching on this June Friday night? We are! You can join us over at #EMGSketchFest 99, happening right now. Come to play, come to inspire, come to admire – all are welcome. Just click this way.

“DEJ3” by Afke van Herpt

The first sketch added to #EMGSketchFest 99 was this movement study by Afke van Herpt! Here’s what Afke has to say about it: “I am participating in #DrawEverythingJune 3 on deviantart, and I’m behind, so this is the perfect prompt to spends some time on one of the poses. 😉 Drawn with Free ink roller.”

That’s your sneak peek for tonight, but be sure to hop over to the gallery and browse the works already there. And come back to the blog tomorrow for more featured illustrations!

Have a great night, and don’t forget to use our official hashtag – #EMGSketchFest – when talking about Sketch Fest on your social media of choice.