Category Archives: My Favorite Things

My Favorite Things – Going to Fashion Illustration School (In My Living Room)

Yesterday I got a surprise package in the mail from my sister.  I had asked for a fashion illustration book by one of my favorite fashion illustrators, Robyn Neild.

My sister not only sent me that book, but two others!   3 Fashion Illustration How To Books

As I thumbed through Fashion Design Studio by Chris Hart

Drawing Hands with Chris Hart Fashion Design Studio book

Inside Fashion Design Studio by Chris Hart

It occurred to me I should tackle these books like a beginner…methodically and with the intention solely of learning rather than trying to produce.  My plan is to start with Chris Hart’s book and then move on to Fashion Doodles, and Fashionista Doodles by Robyn Neild.

What a treat to get to see Robyn’s luscious line work and imagine garments to complete the looks (hello swimsuit season!) Inside Fashion Doodles by Robyn Neild

And just what do I hope to accomplish with this self-directed back-to-basics “course”?

whimsical head sketch

Hmm…I guess I’ll find out!

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Filed under art, drawing, education, fashion illustration, industry news, Influences, inspiration, My Favorite Things, New work, pen and ink, pencil and marker illustration, photography, practicing drawing, techniques, Tool Box

My Favorite Things – Furry Creatures

You wouldn’t believe it, but Block Island, RI is home to llamas…



pair of camels


And even an alpaca…

funny alpaca

(Or two!)

pair of alpacas

Now you might wonder how this is possible, but if you pay a visit to North Light Fibers, a working yarn and textile mini mill, all will become clear.  And since we’re speaking of yarn, keep in mind that it isn’t just for sweaters and mittens.  Meet Serafina the Ballerina my birthday bunny which was hand-knit for me this year by my sister.

Serafina the Ballerina

bunny doing the splits

That’s all folks!


Filed under Influences, My Favorite Things, travel photography

My Favorite Things – A Visit to Block Island, RI

With the New York City Ballet spring season coming to an end this past Sunday, my husband and I got our first taste of summer vacation.  Since our free time is limited, we made the most of it by leaving on Monday morning for Block Island, RI where my husband’s sister and brother-in-law own and run the Old Town Inn.

Old Town Inn

The accommodations are charming, and the food (all cooked by my husband’s brother-in-law) is exquisite!  You’ll find breakfasts that feature home-cooked breads…

cutting the bread

And vegetables grown in the garden by the side of the house.

broccoli in Dave's garden

If you like dramatic landscapes and quick changing weather, Block Island is for you.  The day we arrived was overcast…

houses on Block Island

view of salt pond on Block Island

And by the next morning, a dense fog was rolling in.  

bluff in the fog3

bluff on Block Island in the fog

bluff in the fog4

The smell of the ocean…

ocean on Block Island

Combined with the perfume of the wild roses covering the bluffs, was intoxicating!

roses on the bluff

The views far…

lighthouse on north point of Block Island

And near were peaceful and ever so good for the soul.

rock pile by the ocean

Late in the afternoon, the sun came out and burned off the fog.  We went for a walk and passed sunlit ponds…

pond on Block Island

And rolling meadows.

Field and house on Block Island


two adirondack chairs the the Old Town Inn

You bet!


Filed under Influences, My Favorite Things, nature, photography, travel

My Favorite Things – A Walk Around the Reservoir

After a particularly long day of performing yesterday – a matinee on Broadway followed by an evening show at New York City Ballet – I needed a break from sitting and made time for a long walk around the reservoir today.  Here’s what I saw…

through the trees on the reservoir

red roses

colorful flowers along the reservoir

pink roses

cloudy day along the reservoir

duck swimming in the reservoir

rushes around the Jackio O reservoir

East side along the Jackie O reservoir

big turtle swimming in the Jackie O reservoir

birds atop one of the Jackie O reservoir buildings


Filed under architecture, My Favorite Things, New York City, photography

My Favorite Things – It’s All Games

What’s better than learning a new skill and feeling your mind expand?  Well, how about getting the lessons for FREE!  My two favorite websites currently (besides YouTube) are…



Happy headset illustration 325

On this site you can learn to speak a foreign language for free!  Not only are the lessons well laid out with opportunities to listen, read AND have your pronunciation checked, but there are lots of valuable extras like review quizzes and flash-cards. Even better, your progress is charted via a point system (with the points adding up to virtual currency that can be redeemed in the virtual store) as well as an overall percentage system.  After a day’s study – I’m addicted – I can now claim that I’m 15% fluent in Spanish.  And that’s muy bueno, in my book.

– and –

2. CNN Bridge Games

Playing cards

Yes, it would help to know how to play Bridge first (although there is an explanation of the game on this site), and you’ll have to watch an ad when you first pull up the link.  But once you’re past the ad and have created a player name for yourself, the other three Bridge players magically appear around the table and the bidding and playing commences.  It’s a great no-pressure way to practice the game and try out different bidding and playing strategies….perfect for the nights that I’m NOT at the ballet with my Bridge buddies but feel like playing cards.

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Filed under art, marker and ink illustration, My Favorite Things, New work, resources, wisdom

My Favorite Things – A Moment in Time

Happy accidents of light and darkness…moments that caught my eye today.

A dark canopy frames the Beresford…

The Beresford as seen through the trees

While crisp blossoms obscure high rises in the distance.

flowering tree on the reservoir

Water drops glisten…

Fountain in Central Park(And X marks the spot!)

light in the trees

These are just a few moments in time!

reservoir at dusk

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Filed under Influences, inspiration, My Favorite Things, nature, New York

My Favorite Things – A Luncheon in the Clouds

Yesterday I caught up with a good friend over lunch.  She suggested we meet at Robert, the ninth floor restaurant in Columbus Circle’s Museum of Arts and Design.

If you’re hurrying by the sleek facade of the Museum of Arts and Design, you could easily overlook this gem.

Museum of Art and Design at Columbus Circle

But if you’ve got good eyesight (or a zoom lens!) you’ll notice that that this restaurant on the southwest corner of Central Park has an incredible vantage point.

Photo of the restaurant Robert from the outside

 The menu is cheery and straight forward…

Robert wine menu

With clean and fresh flavors that are matched by the airy and light ambiance.

Restaurant Robert decor

orchid vases at restaurant Robert

I ordered the endive and apple salad with chicken…

Endive and apple salad with chicken at restaurant Robert

(And loved every bite!)

Tables by the window are booked weeks in advance…

View looking north from restaurant Robert

But even if you can’t nab one of those, you’ll still be guaranteed a great view!


Filed under architecture, Dining, My Favorite Things, New York City, photography