Vermillion © Sue O’Kieffe 2010

I took a much needed break. I was putting too much pressure on myself to produce, and that’s never a good sign. I created this doodle sometime in December, but I was unhappy with it and had no desire to post it. My inner critic was wah-wah-wah’ing at me.

If I remember correctly, this doodle started out as an exercise in wanting to play more with watercolor crayons. I am not as confident  with using these as I am with the prismacolors. I was not happy with the results. Today I am posting the doodle as a statement of it being ok. I told myself a year ago or so, whenever I started this series of what I call “spirit doodles” that whatever I posted was ok. And so it is.

I would love to hear your stories of how you make friends with your inner critics.


Dancing with Life

Dancing with Life @ Sue O’Kieffe 2010

Sometimes we dance with our demons (they have horrid bad breath and terrible yellow teeth). Actually, demons are very good dancers, and all they want is to have a little fun. The best way to dance with your demons is to laugh at them. They don’t hear enough laughter, and get tired of roaring and growling just to get a little attention.

Sometimes we dance with kites and scarves and other things that flow in the wind.  And sometimes we dance with sparkly things. Life has its rhythms and flows and dancing with life makes the day worthwhile.

Have fun with your dance and finding your inner beat. Wear your brightest colors and enjoy your day.



Good news! Stay tuned for information in the next few weeks about SueDoodles first ever calendar, Adventures in Doodleland 2011!


The Visitor

The Visitor © Sue O’Kieffe 2010

He came to earth and liked what he saw. He looks sad because large eyes often give that impression; but really, large eyes just make it easier to take it all in.

He was very happy to see how we all love each other. He loved seeing that we embrace our friendships with joy. He loved the beauty and the greenness of our planet.

His planet reveres creativity and he loved all the creativity present on our planet. He liked knowing that we use  our minds and our hearts to solve problems as well as to create joy. This made his heart shine brightly.

All the symbols on his clothing have meaning. If you spoke his language you would know he was an emissary of wellbeing. He builds bridges between cultures and planets and countless solar systems. He didn’t stay long here because other places were in need of him more.

We were blessed by his presence. Let’s continue to carry on with the goodness he witnessed.


Welcome to my Universe

Welcome to my Universe © Sue O’Kieffe 2010

Whee. Are we having fun now?

I created the doodles and started the fun part of coloring, when I decided the background would look better black. First I used neocolors with water, but the black was too grey. Out came the black marker.

I’m thinking next time start with black paper, outline in white pencil and see what that’s like.

The black created a sense of mystery for me, of night sky and heavenly bodies. And these are the constellations of my imagination.

Welcome to my Universe.


Self Portrait – Face of Freedom

Face of Freedom © Sue O’Kieffe 2010

Another self portrait asked to be expressed. Maybe this is a theme that will continue for a while. We’ll see.

There is a mask like quality to this doodle. I love the colors, the birds flying over the mountain tops, and the freedom that comes with self expression, not needing to be perfect or having to please anyone but myself in this doodle.

Tech stuff. Im using a larger sketch book now – Canson XL Mixed Media 98 lb. I like the larger size book that allows me to use twinkling h2o’s and neocolors along with the dry media of prismacolor pencils. I was feeling a little cramped in the other book I was using so this is nice.


Self Portrait – Grounded in Gold

Self Portrait – Grounded in Gold © Sue O’Kieffe 2010

A power outage over the weekend took me to Starbucks with sketchbook, sharpie  and iPod in hand. Sipping on some incredibly sweet Vanilla Bean milk shake concoction and listening to Krishna Das, this image began to emerge. A recent renewal of psychic healing techniques came to mind, and I realized that a visual expression of those spiritual gifts is what wanted to emerge in this doodle.

I am relearning the importance of grounding and letting go as part of my spiritual practice as well as renewing and replenishing my energy. The demonstrations of how much grounding deep into the earth and letting go of unwanted gunk has gotten me through some pretty challenging times this past week.

When I began filling in the details of this doodle with color, I gave myself permission to be imperfect. I know where the shortcomings are in my painterly abilities, but I also knew it was more important to lay color on paper than be a perfect little artist.

Sometimes when I look at this image it feels a little dark and heavy and weird, but mostly it is playful. We view our work with such critical eyes. It’s freeing to just let what comes out speak for itself.

How does your spiritual practice interact with your art?

Sue Doodles

Grow in Love

Grow in Love ~ © Sue O’Kieffe 2009

Trees are one of my favorite symbols. When I was drawing it, it asked to have hearts for leaves. Love is one of my favorite themes. In fact I would say that  my art — my digital mandalas and my line drawings –are all about love. I create with Love, I share with Love. My creative impulses are heart- centered.

I decided to play with neocolors in this mandala. It’s a medium Im not as comfortable using as I am my crayons or colored pencils. I think I’d like to take a watercolor class just for a little more confidence, learn the right brushes, and when to stop. But overall I like how the basic image looks and the feeling it conveys.


Tag You’re It!

Design2 © Sue O’Kieffe 2009

Drawing paper is not the best substrate for playing with water  solubles like drawing markers and neocolors. Oh well. Spontaneity won out and I was mostly able to photoshop out the paper wrinkles created from wet media. Im just having fun playing with all these shapes and colors. I’m feeling more relaxed about my analogue art after AEDM. I like the shift. I like really allowing myself to play more and to stop worrying about looking good.

Eden tagged me in this sharing meme. The rule is to respond to the question in one word (or your version of one word.) This was fun. If you want to play, go ahead. Tag! You’re it!


Where is your cell phone? …

2. Your hair?… curly

3. Your mother?…colorful

4. Your father?… wordsmith

5. Your favorite food?… c h o c o l a t e

6. Your dream last night?… jumbled

7. Your favorite drink?… tea

8. Your dream/goal?… toLiveArt

9. What room are you in?… Main

10. Your hobby?… Dreaming

11. Your fear?… falling

12. Where do you want to be in 6 years?… hmmmm?

13. Where were you last night?…doodling-in-bed

14. Something that you aren’t?… superficial

15. Muffins?… pumpkin

16. Wish list item?… laptop

17. Where did you grow up?… Minneapolis

18. Last thing you did?… fixTea

19. What are you wearing?… jammies

20. Your TV?…on

21. Your Pets?… none:(

22. Friends?… Precious

23. Your life?… transforming

24. Your mood?… happy

25. Missing Someone?… yes

26. Vehicle?… Honda

27. Something you’re not wearing?… shoes

28. Your favorite store?…

29. Your favorite colour?… yellow

30. When was the last time you laughed?… yesterday

31. Last time you cried?… recently

32. Your best friend?… SueZen

33. One place that I go to over and over?… Grocery

34. Facebook?…

35. Favorite place to eat?… sushi



Playing with Fire – © Sue O’Kieffe 2009

Last night I played some more with neocolors. I like the phoenix that arose.

This morning when cleaning up the image for posting I got to wondering…




Isolating areas create whole new little paintings. I’ve been thinking about ACEOs off and on and will probably think about and play with them some more.  I’m planning to open an Etsy shop for SueDoodles in the second half of 2010. This was sure the furthest thing from my mind when I began my meanderings on paper during AEDM 2007!

I hope you all have a delicious Thanksgiving.  I am going to do just what I want to do today and that’s just fine by me!