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see that dark one walking there/see the moon caught in her hair/she’s a ghost among your men/she’s a dark one understand

Portrait of Selene Shields, the Dark Moon • graphite pencil • 12″x9″ smooth bristol board • February 2017

I started this in February, which is Black History Month, and I’m posting it here in March, which is Women’s History Month. Both subjects are pertinent to Selene, who is both. I’ve long wanted to do a sister-portrait to “Woman of Thunder” but was lacking the right visual inspiration for Selene. That came to me while writing one of the recent Driving Arcana stories, where there was a lot of lunar imagery and it occurred to me that a fun visual play could be done with a face side-lit by a full moon—in essence created two crescents. The fact that the moon itself does not shine, but only reflects the sunlight cast upon it, was also influential. People forget that the moon is also a dark one, but even in darkness we feel her pull.

You can see Selene in action in Driving Arcana, available in paperback and ebook from Heliopause. Prints available here!

call her a beast, call her a villain, she’ll find a way to settle the score/she sits in the dark, her finger on the trigger/don’t doubt her blood’s redder than yours

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Righto, so it’s been a very busy, happy summer in a stressful sort of way. Conventions, moving, a friend’s wedding, more conventions (MOVING) so naturally I’ve been painting more cute owls in strange hats.

Whitefaced Owls in Assorted Strange Hours Hats

Whitefaced Owls in Assorted Strange Hours Hats

These darlings are modeling the Yellow-grey pixie, flotsam shell, and Fiddler’s Green fiddlehead hats!

Both the originals will be up for grabs at MidAmeriCon II this coming weekend! If you plan to attend, do go have a look! Chronographia will be there as well, with more of her amazing hats, so be sure to check her out as well! They will soon by added to my RedBubble shop for all your print and gift card needs!

Watercolors on 5″x7″ paper.

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The short of it is I was bogged down in long-term projects and one morning I woke up and realized what I needed to do was paint an owl wearing one of Chronographia’s marvelous hats. So I did. This was the result:


Elf owl in a Sprout Beret

It made me so happy that I did another one the next day.

Barn Owl in a Sky Blue Counterpoint

Barn Owl in a Sky Blue Counterpoint

By this time I was on a roll, and knew I had to keep painting owls, if only to keep my spirits up.

Snowy Owls in Pixie Hats

Snowy Owls in Pixie Hats

Chronographia tells me these hats were made on commission for a couple going on a skiing trip—so my choice of owl was extra appropriate!

Great Gray Owl in a Yellow Star Jester Hat

Great Gray Owl in a Yellow Star Jester Hat

Half the fun of this, of course, if looking for reference pictures of various owls. Great Grays are incredible—I could do a whole series within this series of great gray owls!

Northern Hawk Owl in a Scarlet Pinwheel Topper

Northern Hawk Owl in a Scarlet Pinwheel Topper

Northern Hawk Owls are also stupendous birds! Very serious and majestic. So of course I had to put mine in the most outrageous hat!

Eurasian Eagle Owl in a Sugared Violet hat

Eurasian Eagle Owl in a Sugared Violet hat

Painting the owls in flight was very time-consuming, because of their wings, but also highly rewarding! Doing the details of light and dark on their feathers without white paint was an additional challenge.

Tawny Owl in a Red Atagaric

Tawny Owl in a Red Atagaric

There is something about owls that is so self-possessed and dignified that when they look offended it is particularly adorable.

Burrowing Owl in a Pine Jester.

Burrowing Owl in a Pine Jester.

As of this post the series consists of eight owls, which are available as prints and greeting cards over on my Red Bubble shop, but I expect there will be more in future. The original Elf, Barn and Snowy Owls have been sold, while the rest are slated to appear in art shows at AnthroCon and World Con this summer. Chronographia will also be peddling her wares at the later, but in the meantime I encourage everyone to go check out her Etsy shop, where she lists hats and other goodies for sale!

All were done in watercolor on 5″x7″ paper.

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Hunter and Hound

2016 by Goldeen Ogawa, watercolor on paper

This is a somewhat cheeky piece of work. You see, it could be a depiction of Arawn, King of Annwm, (or possibly Gwyn; the distinction between them being so fuzzy), with one of his red-eared Yeth Hounds…

or it could be Sirius, the Dogstar, incarnate in a bastard Yeth Hound/golden retriever mix and the Master of the Hunt, who is probably the original Child of Darkness on whom legends of Arawn and Gwyn were based. It entirely depends on how much of a Diana Wynne Jones fan you are, I suppose. 😉

Personal work done between book projects, to remind myself that yes I can make pictures that don’t take months to finish.

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hint: click for full view!

hint: click for full view!

Colored pencils • prints and merch here!buy the book here!

Cover art for Professor Odd Episode 7: The Dogs of Canary Island. Now that the book is out, I can finally share the original cover art!

This was done largely over the course of January/February 2015, all in colored pencils, as I do with the Odd covers. Still getting the hang of doing art-for-book-covers rather than just art-as-illustration, but this one came out pretty good, I think.

As for the story… genetically engineered dogs. A sarcastic Borzoi. A long-suffering Akita Inu. Professor Odd wears a ruffly apron. Dave makes breakfast. ALISTER FLIES THE ODDITY. Also wormholes. Good times.

Buy the book and read it yourself!

Professor Odd is a series of science fiction novellas about a universe-hopping woman-thing and her friends as they travel the multiverse looking for pizza, nice beeches, peace and quiet, and sometimes helping stray dogs on the way. You can find more episodes on it’s Heliopause page, prints and other merch for sale on my Red Bubble store.

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NEBULA • Personal work • 2015 • 11”x14” mixed media

Print available!

Revisiting my Planet Horse series (now perhaps more accurately called the Celestial Horses), this is the latest and largest edition: Nebula.

Unlike the others, which were all modeled off existing horse breeds, Nebula sprung right out of my imagination—but she looks like some sort of warmblood. I used references from the Cat’s Eye and Helix nebulae and the Westerlund 2 cluster. Her sigil, in the lower left-hand corner, represents the rings of expanding gases found in many planetary nebulae.

Acrylic ink, colored pencils and metallic pen on 11”x14” watercolor paper. Original will be going to AnthroCon!

When complete, the Celestial Horses will include the four gas giants, with a re-worked Ouranos (Uranus), along with Nebula and the Sun & Moon. They are the stylistic siblings of my Elemental Horse series (Fire, Air, Water, Earth and Wood, Metal) and together they constitute the Fantastic Equines series.

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OURANOS 2015 • personal work

Mixed media: acrylic ink, colored pencil and metallic pen on 9”x12” bristol board.

Print available! Progress pics here!

This is a redone version of the original Ouranos of my Planet Horse series from 2013. In this incarnation, Ouranos—third of the gas giants and first of the ice giants—is modeled off both a Lippizaner and an Arabian. They are depicted in a trotting side-pass, or traverse, a reference to the planet’s tilted orbit. Better known by the Latinized version of their name, Uranus was the primordial god of the heavens, the father of Saturn and the grandfather of Jupiter. The patterns running along the left and right borders mimic the arrow of Ouranos’s planetary symbol, while the curls and circles reflect its whirling clouds and vertical ring system.

Though I was pleased with the overall set, I was dissatisfied with Ouranos. Since I’m planning on producing a calendar consisting of the entire Fantastic Equines series, I took the opportunity to remake Ouranos—this time in landscape format. I also adjusted the pose and border, and overall I am much happier with this version. I also changed them from a pure aqua-blue to an “aqua palomino” which I felt added some much-needed variation to the color scheme.

Credit where credit is due: I knew I wanted to pose Ouranos side-passing from the front, but was unsure if I could find adequate reference photos. It is not something horses do naturally, but when they do it looks incredible. Thankfully, I found the perfect reference, and though I took enormous artistic liberties, it heavily influenced the end result.

Original will be going to AnthroCon!

See the rest of the Fantastic Equines (including the original Ouranos from 2013) over here!

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11”x14” watercolor and ink, 2014-2015 • Print Available! • Click for full view.

Original is for sale! Drop me a line if interested.

A personal piece I sketched out almost a year ago, which I’ve been nursing along ever since. Unlike many of my works, this one’s meaning changed a lot over the course of its creation. At the time I drafted it I was writing a novel where wolves were the protectors of a forest, much to the protagonist’s surprise, and I was also inspired by Alector Fencer’s plant spirit character, so that was where the wolf spirit came from. I toyed with the notion of elk and deer as being enemies of the forest, since they eat it after all, but as I finished the piece I realized that the guardian/enemy dynamic was not what the picture was about.

That wolf spirit is not a wood spirit at all, but the Death of Deer. The Death of Deer looks like a wolf, fittingly enough, but it is made of plants and leaves, representing the circle of life as the deer’s body returns to the earth to provide nutrients for the plants which it consumed while it was alive. I can only imagine this deer had a harder time than most letting go, which was what prompted the personal attention of the Death of Deer.

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"Woman of Thunder" • Graphite pencil on 12"x9" bristol board • click through for full view!

“Woman of Thunder” • Graphite pencil on 12″x9″ bristol board • click through for full view!

© Goldeen Ogawa 2015. WIP shots on Tumblrprint available here!

Raise your sword up, woman of thunder
’cause they’ll try to take you down tonight
Get your arms up, girl of wonder
you gotta chase ’em down before they fly

A personal piece I’ve been working on, on and off (but mostly off) since September of last year. This one features Clara, one of the three main protagonists from my Driving Arcana series (Rotation One available here!) with her trademark sword and custom Yamaha VMAX, Unicorn. Now I’m thinking I ought to do matching portraits for Selene and Jill, the other two leads, but considering how long this one took me, I don’t know when that will be. XD

Lyrics are from her signature song, “Miracles and Unicorns.”


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Gildenvern Personal Work, 2015 • Print available!

This piece began as a test for me to practice gold leafing techniques with Sophie Klesen (AKA SoMK) at World Con last year, in London. I had a great time and learned a lot, but never got around to finishing it… until one afternoon, partially driven by not having created any new art in a while, I sat down with my watercolors and my new paint brushes with the goal of knocking it out in one sitting. This is the result.

(Had I given myself more time, I probably could have managed more details here and there, but it is what it is and what it is is finished so I’m not going to stress the small things overmuch. Besides, I think it looks cool, even if the gold leaf got eaten by the scanner. As usual. You can get a better idea of what the leaf looks like over here.)

Progress pics:

GildenvernProg1 GildenvernProg2 GildenvernProg3

Gold leaf, watercolor and white ink on 9”x12” bristol board. Original is for sale; drop me a line if interested!


Goldeen Ogawa is a writer, illustrator and cartoonist. To keep tabs on what she is doing you can follow her on twitter @GrimbyTweets, and on Tumblr. You can also contact her directly.


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