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Join the adventure into the world of midsummer magic, wildflowers and fantasy cats. Sandcastle.fi blog follows the path to fascinating art, where dreamy elements are playing with the reality - and illustrations are completed with Finnish wildflowers. Artist Sanna of the Sandcastle takes you into a journey to creativity, art and illustrations.

Something old, something new... or maybe after all something surreal?

In the beginning of the New Year it´s nice to look back by sorting out old images and files. And after doing that I can now share with you also some pictures of the old drawings from the past years. So, let´s start with this fairy tale themed fantasy portrait of a cat.

Into this portrait the aim was to combine a fairy tale feeling and illustrative approach with a bit (pop) surreal twist.  As a result this drawing could then be seen as a fantasy portrait of a cat or as a fairy tale illustration - or both.

It was interesting to explore the fading boundary between portrait and illustration. Playing with the style and level of realism is always extremely fascinating! In this case the drawing process was like a journey to fantasy and flower world.  Being surrounded by flowers you can easily get carried away and even lose the sense of time.

The composition to this portrait was designed to be very symmetrical. Along with the symmetry it was important to keep all the elements in balance, and therefore for example all the flowers were drawn as unique variations.  The symmetrical approach was also an effective way to emphasize the stillness, but also highlight the illustrated viewpoint. The imaginary posture of the cat along with a bit styled whiskers were also leading the way to more fairy tale feeling. The fantasy theme with flowers had also a special meaning referring to the portrayed cat. And by drawing a layer after layer all those stories from this cat were captured too. Almost like this one portrait could tell the whole fairy tale story.

I wanted this drawing also to resemble the style of the old portrait paintings with vivid colors, especially in the red dress - although in this case I drew the portrait with colored pencils. The finished drawing was commissioned to be a part of a playful and pop surreal interior design. And for that reason the chosen colors were strong and bright.

I designed the historical dress style from imagination. The aim was to convey the feel of different fabrics and lace in the dress, but also the sense of fragile flowers. Like that the portrait would present not only the grandeur, but also the fragile sensitivity at the same time - describing that way also the different sides of the portrayed cat.

Il dolce far niente - the sweetness of doing nothing

Il dolce far niente. The sweetness of doing nothing.
In this hectic world those precious moments for the inner peace... My Italian cat shows how to :)

Wishing you all a great and happy weekend <3

There´s still time to participate in the competition - one lucky winner will win a free pet portrait drawing!

Sandcastle.fi reached the magical 10 000 likes in Facebook! During the celebration one lucky winner WINS FREE PET PORTRAIT drawing including also postage worldwide. Participate in Facebook and you might win a free drawing from your own pet photo! Just leave a COMMENT or POST your PET PHOTO in Sandcastle.fi Facebook page. The time to participate is 10.10.2014–11.11.2014  and the winner will be announced on 14.11.2014.

GOOD LUCK to the competition! And a big thank you to all fans for all the likes and support <3

Fantasy cat portrait with pencils

The pet portrait can be also a bit different and fantasy themed!

Fantasy pet portrait with pencils. This is an older work in progress picture from my personal project. After sketching all the symbolic elements are here starting to find their own places in the portrait.


Close up from the fantasy pencil pet portrait. It felt almost like I would have been sewing the fantasy clothes, when I was drawing the details in to this pencil drawing :)

Sandcastle.fi has reached 10 000 likes in Facebook - Join the celebration and participate in the competition!

Sandcastle.fi has reached the magical 10 000 likes in Facebook! Feeling grateful and it´s now my turn to thank all the fans! So, it´s time for exciting giveaway, where the lucky winner WINS FREE PET PORTRAIT drawing including also postage worldwide.

Participate in Facebook and you just might win a free drawing from your own pet photo! Leave a COMMENT or POST your PET PHOTO in in Sandcastle Facebook page. The time to participate is 10.10.2014–11.11.2014  and the winner will be announced on 14.11.2014.

GOOD LUCK to the competition! And a big thank you to all fans for all the likes and support <3

Kitten for monday

What a soft and cute start for the week with a kitten portrait!
Work in progress pictures from the pencil drawing.

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