Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 28)

The last illustration for the book is finished!!!!


The Dog and the Wolf Fondo small

The Dog and the Wolf small


Illustration number 8 has been finished right on time to celebrate Natalie's 8th birthday. Today is my girl's birthday and I'm so happy and so proud to be her Mom. All the original illustrations from the book are my special gift to her. Do you see the little flower right next to the dog's hand up there in the illustration? Natalie cut the yellow part :)


Natalie the paper cutter small

As I mentioned before I wanted her to cut a tiny little piece for this book to create a special memory for the future.

We're so happy that the illustrations are going to stay in the family. Something nice about it is that (with Natalie's permission, she loves the idea) we can frame them and organize a show in the future when the book is already in print. I think that it would be special for children and adults to see the originals. We just need to find the right place for such event. But there is plenty of time to think about that :)

Right now, there is still something important to work on: the cover!!

Happy Birthday Natalie!!

And let's all have a wonderful day!

Elsita :)

(Just an interesting little detail: if you look at Natalie's hands carefully you will notice how skilled she is with the scissors. I thought that she was going to have a hard time cutting such a tiny piece of paper. But she did it so perfectly well. Her fine motor skills are quiet impressive for her age. I think that in not too long she will be making her own paper pieces. I can't wait!)


Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 27)


Here I'm sharing the last 2 characters for the book. I cannot believe that I'm working on illustration #8.

Wolf white background small

I wanted my wolf for the fable to look like the real animal because in the story he's free and wild and hasn't been domesticated. He's also hungry and a little bit underweight. See the ribs? He's carefully listening to the dog's stories about how much food he eats and the advantages of having an owner. But as you can see the wolf is not completely convinced. In the fable the wolf realizes that between food and freedom he choses freedom: "Better starve free than be a fat slave".

Dog white brackground small

And here we have our dog very well dressed with a full tummy, looking almost like a human. Anybody would think that he's totally happy with his life, but very deep inside he misses being free. This little dog is well dressed and fed but at night his owner makes him wear a collar attached to a chain and that hurts his neck a lot. He's wearing a special high neck shirt to hide the wound. 

This fable is told using animals but the moral is directed to humans and the fact the we should never compromise our freedom. The most important thing that we have is the freedom of being who we are and doing what we want.

I will share the whole illustration tomorrow.

Happy Sunday!

Elsita :)

Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 26)


The Frog and the Ox illustration is finished!!

Teatro blog small

Per my editor's suggestion I arranged the stage to represent a lake in this fable. Frogs are normally close to water so I really loved the idea. I tested reflecting the trees and the 2 flowers from the background in the water but it became too busy and distracting. That's why I decided to reflect only the lower green bed of plants. I first used the same color for the reflection but it didn't look nice so I ended up using  lighter green color.

The Frog and the Ox small

I like the humor in this scene. These two characters together make me smile for some reason. Maybe because they're not the typical idea of cute :)

This is illustration #7 so we only have one more to create! I cannot believe it! The last one is: The Dog and the Wolf.

Have a wonderful Friday !

Elsita :)


Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 25)

Please somebody do something!!!

This little frog is about to pop like a balloon!!

Frog white fondo copy

Please froggy!!!!

Stop trying to be as big as an Ox!!!!

It's never gonna work!!!

Do you want me to hold your three-finger hand?

I promise not to ruin your yellow nail polish!

 May I interest you in some fly dessert?

(Something tells me that she's not listening)

But if you think of a way to call her attention please let me know. I just tried everything :o



Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 24)

Ox blog small

Here is the Ox from The Frog and the Ox!!!

There are different types of Oxen (that's the plural of ox). I decided to represent a Musk Ox because the presence is more appropriate for the story which is about a BIG ox and a small frog. The frog sees the giant ox and wants to be as big as he is. Our frog starts swelling to look bigger and bigger and them BOOM! She explodes. The fable doesn't specify what kind of ox I should represent so I was free to make my own choice. The regular ox looks more like a cow or bull. But the Musk Ox is in my opinion a lot more interesting for the fable, I like the way the horns are set. Anyway, the oxen, cows, bulls etc are all from the Bovinae family. After this lesson I'm ready to go to a farm and spend the rest of my life working with animals from the Bovinae family :) I really like their personalities. 

My Ox for the fable is looking down at the frog with that expression like: What? That frog is nuts! I thought that it was going to be very hard to make an animal like the musk ox look interesting but I really liked the way it turned out :)

The frog should be jumping in here tomorrow!

Have a wonderful day!

Elsita :)

Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 23)

The 6th illustration for the book is finished!!

This book is more and real every week :)


The Fox and the Stork small


Now I want to say thanks a million for your comments and encouraging words and electronic birthday cards and e-mails for my birthday, they really made a difference in my day yesterday. Gail, your paper card arrived right in time as well and it made me so happy! Thanks a lot friends! I love U.

Then, let me tell you what happened by the end of the day yesterday: Bill had made a reservation at a restaurant for me to have dinner with my sister in law Marguerite and Natalie, a girl's dinner (he offered to stay home with Diego). I was so tired, ready to go to bed early. I even told Marguerite that I kind of preferred just to stay home with them, I though about moving the dinner to another day. She said; well hermana, do whatever you feel like doing, it's your day...But then at about 7:15 PM Bill said: Elsa you should get ready for the dinner. I really wanted to stay home but I felt so bad about the idea of disappointing him and Marguerite and Natalie. So I made an effort and walked to the restaurant (very close to our home).

When I arrived at the place I immediately saw 2 of my all time favorite girls in the world, Ellen and Debbie. We hugged each other and I said: Wow! It's so great seeing you here! I came with my sister in law and Natalie for a little birthday dinner. And guess what!? They were there for the same reason!!! Then Another 2 of my all time favorite girls in the world arrived! Alisa and Vicky!! And they were there for my birthday dinner as well! Bill had planned the whole thing in secret. What I can say?!!!! My day really went from dark to shiny in a second. I ended up having a wonderful time, Natalie was laughing and all of us were laughing. There were yummy cupcakes in the end and 2 candles with the numbers 4 and 0. I made a wish that I will share with you only, please don't tell anybody: I wished for Bill to have the longest and healthiest life ever. He's the magician of the family, with his very calm and quiet personality he manages to always do magic. Thanks a lot Billy! You're our star!!!

On the other hand, my Mom will be OK, she thinks that she could be into another world right now because of the fall, but she's still here with us to stay for a long time. Her bones will be back to normal. It's a matter of time and patience. She will have lots of support in Florida. A nurse will stay home with her helping and making her life a little bit easier. The problem in my kitchen has been solved temporally so we can keep functioning. When my brother Alex comes to install the kiln (Rojo) he will help us finishing what it has to be done. In the end life is not so bad :) After the rain the sun always shines. Right now as I write this it is a beautiful sunny day over here. I look through the window I feel really glad to be alive.

Lots of love!!

Elsita :)

Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 22)

Bad fox white small

Here is the bad Fox from The Fox and the Stork fable!

As you can see he's offering the soup to the Stork with that expression that translates like this: See how nice I am? ;) I'm so innocent ;) Please eat my delicious dinner. What a great fox I am. He made the stork so confused at first! But then she realized that he was just having fun at her expense.

Oh little fox! When are you going to change? Why do you give your fellow foxes such a bad reputation?. What would your Mom think if she could see you right now?

I really hope that he becomes a better fox tomorrow, because it's Mother's Day. His Mom raised him to be a nicer son. Let's see what happens.

Happy Mother's Day to all the Moms tomorrow!!! 

Elsita :)


Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 21)

Stork 1 copy1 small

Let's welcome our new friend!

Storks are amazing animals. They're so beautiful and elegant and sweet and have such a great sense of fashion :) There are different kinds of storks, but I decided to represent a White Stork because she loves to wear red tights to match her red beak. 

I'm so glad that I got to study this wonderful bird in detail. All I knew about Storks before was that they're often hired by the Post Office as baby carriers

Our Stork for the book is a very special one. She received an invitation for dinner from the Fox, so she got all fancy wearing her favorite pair of 10-button-waterproof-extra-high boots. But guess what? She arrives at Mr' Fox's house to find out that she can't eat the food because he served it (soup!) in a very swallow plate. Mr. Fox did it on purpose. Imagine her disappointment, just look at her expression. She's about to cry. But wait a minute! Our Stork is so smart, very soon she will teach the bad fox a good lesson by putting him in a similar situation.

See? The golden rule here is: do to others what one would wish for oneself.

You can learn more about The Fox and the Stork fable here.

I'm working on the bad fox now.

See you tomorrow!

Elsita :)

Fables de la Fontaine. Book in Progress (post 20)


Please let's welcome the 5th illustration for the book!

The g and the A

The Grasshopper and the Ant copy

As you can see this is the sunniest illustration from the series because it's taking place in the very middle of Summer. Can you feel the warm sun on your skin when you look at it?

This is more or less how it is here in Los Angeles now. So hot! We have to apply extra sunscreen on the skin. I really loved creating this illustration, each part of it was fun, specially the strawberry. I had to closely study the real fruit in order to understand its "anatomy" and see how I could translate it into paper. I also had to study the grasshopper and the ant anatomy to feel totally familiar with their body shapes. I keep learning a lot of new things because of this book. How lucky I feel.

Wishing you a wonderful day!

Elsita :)