Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Free Frazzled Santa Ornament

Here is a little Santa paper ornament, for all you creative, crafty folks! Poor Santa, wiped out from the long night, and the elves playing pranks on him. Make your own ornament now and help him get happy! Just download the image (click to enlarge, then right click to save), print, and follow directions to create your own "Frazzled Santa". Merry Christmas!

Here he is on my tree, all settled in for a nice night.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Spread Joy!

As the bird flies south
to seek comfort in warmth,
so flies peace, joy,
and forgiveness-
over our homes,
and over our hearts.
Warmth is born,
spread through the chill
of long, cold
winter's night.
A Christmas song,
a gift of life,
a comforting love
has been sent to us.
A joyful life!

Friday, October 29, 2010

A wet monster t-shirt contest...

I've submitted a design to Threadless and you can now vote for it to become a shirt! Please vote for Mr. Gene Kelly monster to win!

Score this design: "Singing In The Rain," to help it get printed on Threadless!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Scarecrow, Where Do You Go?

The awesomely silly musician Andy Z asked me to illustrate his first book based on his song "Scarecrow", so of course I said yes! It is a hilarious tale about what Patch the scarecrow does every night, and why his clothes are so tattered and torn. Here is the last scene from the book, racing through the fields:

This book was so much fun to create, and the perfect project for Autumn! So get your copy now and sing along with Andy Z and the crows. The book includes an audio cd of the song Scarecrow.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Primate Primer

Some sketches of Samango monkeys for an idea I'm working on. These guys are so cool, with those well coifed eyebrows and puffy cheeks.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

A view from on high

High above the rooftops
and tall tree leaves,
a view worthy of royalty,
a sight
rarely seen.
Beneath a warm autumn sun
lay quietly,
to watch with delight,
a royal bird
take flight.

artwork © 2010 Woody Miller

Friday, September 24, 2010

My new old-fashioned book

My second book is now out and available! Zishe the Strongman, written by Robert Rubinstein, is about the life of Sigmund "Zishe" Breitbart, a poor Polish Jew, who became the featured Strongman of circuses throughout the world. Published by Kar-Ben publishing, who did an awesome job on the text and layout design!

This book was fun to create, and I got to do a lot of research on strongmen in the early 20th century. Check it out here, and soon I'll have some signed copies to sell!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

An Elephant's dilemma

The problem: Elephant is hungry.
The solution: He eats a coconut, his favorite snack.
The REAL problem: There's no easy way to get a coconut, but with friends to help it just might work!

These are scenes from my story, "The Hungry Elephant" which will be available for iPad soon. I think it will be available as a traditional book as well... more on that later. In any case, here he is, Elephant the hungry!

Also, new goal for self, new blog post at least twice a month...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Star gazing storytime

My story, Philippe's Wish, is now available in the app store for the iPad and I'm so excited I could pop! Just had to share the cool news! Creating this story has been such fun and like no other experience. It is about Philippe and his journey into the sky to catch a star and make a wish. There are animations, interactivity, games, narration and music that create an almost movie-like experience.

So if you have an iPad, check it out! Let me know what you think of it, as I've just finished a second story, "The Hungry Elephant", and I'm working on a third.

Above are a couple screen shots and here is a link to it in the app store.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

SCBWI LA conference

So it was a long, and very fast 4 days of knowledge, inspiration, insight, meetings, meet-ups, and of course, more knowledge. The SCBWI summer conference in LA. Here are a few of the speakers that I really enjoyed:

Of course the one, the only, the first (and former) ambassador of young people's literature and author of "The Stinky Cheese Man" and "The True Story of The 3 Little Pigs", among other books; Jon Scieszka. A very funny guy, but also very smart and not afraid to tell it like it is.

The very prolific Paul Fleischman, who had some very good tips on working on a project more involved and longer than you may be used to.

Priscilla Burris (right) and David Diaz (left) were awesome as the illustrator team heading up the artist portion of the conference. David had some great things to say about the modern world, and how nothing perfect goes away (books), but the design and style may change to reflect the times.

Gordon Korman, a great speaker with some witty, funny insights into the mind of a 14 year old. Author of 2 of the "39 Clues" books which sound very interesting... here I come library!

And finally, Loren Long. What can you say about such a cool guy? His art is incredible and he is just such a great guy. He had great things to say about keeping it simple when working on books. "How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time." Just do one drawing in one day, one piece at a time. Super fun guy with great art, great stories, and an inspiration.

All in all, an amazing first conference for me, met lots of cool people (send me an email or facebook me if we met!), learned bunches, and got inspired. Looking forward to next year!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Double Juggle... or... My childhood knife juggling gypsy hero

When I was younger, the biggest event of every summer was "The Fair". The Nevada County Fair, to be exact. A wonder filled week of smoking carnies, ear bleeding AC/DC and vomit inducing entertainment. You'd see all of your friends, plus get a special peak into the down n' dirty "real world" of the redneck-coon-killin' white trash mullet-sportin-sleeveless-shirt wearin' (because you tore them off to show your muscles... or pit hair) 'Mericans. All the sweaty, dirty, beer soaked, corn dog luvin, metal music mayhem one could hope to dream for in our land of freedom.

And every year I looked forward to seeing the man, the legend, the exotic storytelling magical juggling of Izzy Tooinsky. He juggled knives, balls, played with fire and told fascinating stories the whole time, all without breaking a sweat (and while wearing sleeves on his shirts!). Always a favorite of mine, Izzy was a man from another land, a gypsy like character with incredible skill.

So here is my very quick sketch in honor of him, and the Little Giant Theater. A "double" take on the wonderful magic of childhood entertainment. Perhaps I'll have to do a finished painting in his honor soon.

...On another note, seriously, if you're in LA for the SCBWI conference this weekend, send me an email and let's meet!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Grumpy breakfast

Someone woke up on the wrong side today, tired, isn't hungry, and of course it's a bad hair day. To top it off, oatmeal again!

On a separate note, is anyone out there going to the SCBWI summer conference in LA next week? I'll be there and looking to meet some new friends. If you're going, send me a comment or an email and maybe we can meet up. Would love to met some fellow artist/writer friends from the interwebs!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Summertime swim

I've been working on another book for the iPad and it has been shaping up nicely. Lots of fun with animals and a silly story about one hungry elephant. Just wanted to share a little bit of the action!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Sssliding along, sssnake sssslid himssself into quite a sssspot.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Monday, June 21, 2010

Ripple part 2

For those of you who are not aware, there is a great project going on right now at the "Ripple blog" by Kelly Light. Basically, artists are creating art cards and you can buy them for $10 each, with all proceeds going to help out with the gulf oil spill. The two non profits they are supporting are The Institute for Marine Mammal Studies and The International Bird Rescue Research Center. There has already been $4,000 raised in just a month or two!

Of course I wanted to help out and this seemed like the perfect idea, tons of people pulling together for an awesome cause and doing it in a cool way. So I did 3 pieces and intended to write about them here, but before I could they already sold! Marsha the hippo is one of them. Anyway, you can check them all out here, as well as all the others and I encourage you to buy one or two, a great way to help out with the oil spill and get some original art along with it.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


My long lost blog, how hast thou been? Neglect has suffered thine weary days, and few posts hast thy borders contained. But alas! A new thought hast sprung forth! Breath hast begun to bloweth, and the drop of life has produced a ripple to spring forth!

Seriously, has it been a month since my last post!? Well here we go, a little ripple for illustration friday.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Fearless... my journey into digital art

For several years I've played around with a little digital art here and there, but never really dove into it. I'm a very hands on person, I love touching the artwork, getting paint on my hands, and using pencils and bushes. But awhile back I was contacted to see about coming up with a digital ibook for the iPad.

I decided to do it digitally so it would be easier to manipulate and animate. After a couple weeks, I really got into it and feel like I'm finding my way to a great style. The book I'm working on is called "Philippe's Wish" and should be out later this year through "ibookkids". It is about Philippe, a dapper little dog who sets out into the night sky to catch a star and make a wish on it. A very fearless little character. Above is a sample of one of the pages.

So thanks for checking it out, and if you have an iPad, watch for the book and I'll put up another post when it comes out!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Mural é finito!

I've been in a cocoon for the last couple months working on this mural for my church. Now that I've finally finished it I'm excited to show it off! It lives down in the kids hall and measures 8x35 feet (approximately, I haven't actually measured the whole thing). Here is the full mural, and a couple sections.

The concept is, from left to right, starting at the Golden Gate Bridge side of San Francisco at night, and spanning across the city to the Bay Bridge in daytime. Along the way are many creatures taking delight in the city - Lombard street (the crooked street), cable cars, sea lions, the wharf, coit tower, etc...

I think I started it in February (ideas started forming in December...) and finished the other day. This was so much fun to create and really pushed me to dive in, so hopefully the joy shows. I would love another opportunity for something like this, so if you need a mural or know someone who does, send me a line and I'd love to give an estimate. Kids' murals or other subjects, I'm open to whatever.

Anyway, hope you like it and if you're ever in SF on a weekend, come by Lighthouse church on 1337 Sutter St. to check it out and visit!

Saturday, April 24, 2010


Trying to find a way to get above,
around, and ahead of the town,
Christian kneeled down and whispered aloud,
"Take me on a ride if you can..."
and off it took into the sky,
the carpet could most definitely fly!

Monday, April 12, 2010


Linked arm in arm
the two foxes stroll,
through the forest,
the shade,
and around the knoll.
Two lovers,
Two friends,
who knows.
Two kinds of company
to help joy

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


She sautes, whips, and bakes,
stirs, chops, and makes cake.
Meet Mellie, the chef,
who cooks step by step,
the most tasty food you can make!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

A walk with Claude

Down a dusty path
the wind tumbles softly along,
the blossoms grow like
billowing clouds of cotton,
nestled in soft pillows of pink.
Claude takes a stroll
through the fresh perspective of spring,
cold white snowflakes are gone,
now it's warm, white petals
floating all along.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Meet the Howler's!!

"Meet the Howler's"(published by Charlesbridge), a fun picture book I recently illustrated is getting some good reviews! It's written by the super talented and prolific April Pulley Sayre and follows a howler monkey family through the high tree tops in the jungles of Central America. Written in rhyme, it tells about a howlers' sloppy eating, long naps, and general crazy-monkey-silliness. Here is the review from School Library Journal:

"A whimsical introduction to a family of monkeys. Full-bleed spreads show the animals in action, accompanied by a rhyming text in a large font and related facts in a smaller type. The illustrations, done in acrylic, watercolor crayon, and colored pencil and featuring the active animals against backdrops of lush greens, show the Howlers as they fly from broad green-leafed branch to branch, calling out so loudly the males “can be heard a mile away.” “Woo-hoo-hoo!/AH-UH-OH!” ties the action together as a refrain. The illustrations support the introductory information about the Howlers, their calls, behavior, diet, and habitat, providing a comfortable slice of life for early literacy presentations. A fact page and map are more complex, yet will enhance a one-on-one experience.–Nancy Call, Santa Cruz Public Libraries, Aptos, CA"

Here is a spread of papa howler from the book:

Order your copy today!
local bookstores

If you order from my website, I will sign your copy(s)!

Friday, February 26, 2010

My Traveling Star

High above the city
on a quiet, clear blue night-
getting some perspective on life
and a lovely new view of things.

Monday, February 22, 2010

take THAT!!!

Kung-fu squirrel and Samurai bear. Watch your back!
A couple paintings I did for my art group, which has yet to come up with a good name for the group. More Ninja nonsense to come soon...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Jungle fever - CATS!

Some cats are furry, head to toe,
some are sneaky sleek and sly, as you know.
The striped and strong fast ones fly,
the big brown lazy ones watch the sky.
Small black fuzzy ones sleep on our laps,
and spotted quick jungle ones run so fast.
All kinds of cats jump around and run,
lions, tigers, panthers and leopards-
they all have so much fun!

Thursday, February 04, 2010

A little cheese in your life

Everyone needs a little cheese sometimes. Grilled cheese is always good. Wensleydale, Brie, Mozzarella, Feta, Gruyere... And with that intoxicating smell, every once in awhile, someone gets very focused on it.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Focused... on hats!

As you may know, I love a good animal with a hat on. So It's only natural for me to wonder, how did they get their hats? By focusing on the target!

Also, "Meet the Howler's" is officially available starting February 1st! Written by April Pulley Sayre, and illustrated by me, it's a wild romp through the life of the howler monkey. Here's a secret, you can get your signed copy right now here.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


An older painting, but I think it fits the theme, "wilderness". Plus I had no time to do a new one because I'm getting ready for the release of Meet the Howler's!

Check it out, my first illustrated picture book! Also fits under wilderness I suppose.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Grilled Cheese

Can anyone resist the succulent smell of moist bread crusting while grilled in butter, full of heavenly ooooozing cheese? The French do it right, with a baguette and brie - the English with crusty bread and Wensleydale. mmmmmmmmmmm.....

Monday, January 04, 2010

New music for new years

Time to play the old year out with a wave, please don't follow too closely! A new music floats in with the new year, and hopefully a new melody. No looking back, but finding new style, new love, new hope, and new joy. Perhaps a new technique, what do you think? A couple songs with my friends - the elephant plays low and mellow, the bird a light, sweet song. Thanks friends for the past, now let's keep on with the journey. To 2010, and to happy painting!!