Surfing the Sea

Since 1995

APH/IAMP: New Year’s Party (2015) — Dec 31, 2015

APH/IAMP: New Year’s Party (2015)


As I promised last week on my completion of It’s Christmas in the City of Canada, I’ve drawn this specially-timed fan-artwork of Canada from Hetalia: Axis Powers and his province and territory kids from the IAmMatthewian Project celebrating the New Year with a house party. (See the Canadian Boys fifth anniversary post for more background on Hetalia and the IAMP.)

While Canada gets on with baking more nibbles to keep the party going past midnight and keep everybody up, the provinces and territories are busy having a celebratory conga across the vast family room, while footage of the fireworks across Canada and the world plays over on the widescreen LCD TV Canada bought for Christmas. Naturally, some members of the Canadian household are more inclined to dancing than others – Nova Scotia especially, due to his musical background and expertise (haven’t you seen him play the fiddle?) That iPod playing music on the dock is actually one of his Christmas presents, signed with NS (his postal abbreviation).

Nova Scotia plays the fiddle

Originally I was going to have all the provinces and territories in the conga line, but the size limitations of A4 sketchbook paper meant that I had to end the conga with Newfoundland, with Prince Edward Island and the territories merely watching the other provinces conga, cheering them on. Even Labrador, Newfoundland’s pet dog, is joining in the cheer, wagging his tail excitedly at the conga dancers.

I usually don’t draw artworks that are set in actual landscapes or rooms, so colouring in the wall and floor was hard work for me. My hands were even aching and slightly chafed from rubbing up against the wood of the pencils for so long! The floor and walls in the kitchen were a little easier as it was only a small space, but it was still tricky colouring in the floor like a checkerboard – I needed to know which tiles were black and which were white. Despite the difficulties, however, this was still a fun piece of art to draw from idea to finished work. I can easily consider this one of my best artworks of this year – not a shabby title for my final artwork of 2015.

May you all have a great New Year’s Eve, and see you in 2016… which is tomorrow! 😉

Peggy MacIntosh (Character Sketch) — Dec 29, 2015
Peggy MacIntosh: Character Profile —

Peggy MacIntosh: Character Profile

Peggy is Hal’s former wife and Syd’s mother. She lived with Hal and Syd for much of Syd’s childhood, but became increasingly irritated by Hal’s irresponsibility and alcoholism until one day, she finally got to the end of her tether and divorced Hal, leaving him to ‘care’ for Syd as a newly single father. This badly traumatized the teenage Syd, who bemoaned the prospect of living with only his rude, irresponsible father for the rest of his life, and now has to endure Hal’s alcohol-fuelled antics daily. If Peggy runs into Hal while out and about, she will criticize him on his vulgar behaviour and dirty looks, unless he is with Syd, in which case she will praise Syd for bearing the brunt of having to cater for his lazy father. Occasionally, Peggy will visit Syd and Hal in person at their home, where she will try to avoid Hal as much as possible due to his uncouth and untidy demeanour, and instead try to spend as much time as she can with Syd, but of course Hal will inevitably try to interrupt Peggy and Syd’s ‘us time’ by causing them irritability and stress. Peggy has become somewhat brusque and rough from living with Hal for many years, but at her core she loves to care for other people – she still communicates with Syd online and over the phone at regular intervals to check upon his progress in life. She loves to knit fluffy dolls, cushions, armchair throws and winterwear such as scarves and bobble hats when it is just her on her own, without Hal to barge in abruptly on her or Syd moaning about his dirty manners.

The Case of the Crazy November (2007) — Dec 27, 2015

The Case of the Crazy November (2007)

The fourteenth book exhibition of my blog!

El Caso De Noviembre Chiflado (The Case Of Crazy November)

(Click on the link above to open the book in your browser. You will need Adobe Reader installed to view the book. If you don’t have it, you can download it for free at

Last week, I exhibited a poster of the entire cast of the 2007 series of The Months/Month Boys, or Los Ninos Meses to give its Spanish name, due to me residing in Colombia at that time. By then, I had pretty much finalized the designs for each of the twelve members of the gang (except for December, as I was about to decorate him a little bit later that year…) This called on the opportunity to write a little story starring these new characters. (Well, technically not ‘new’, but you know what I mean in this context…)

Although I’ve given the English name of the book for the title of this post, I wrote the book entirely in Spanish – an incredible feat for me, as I’d never written entirely in a foreign language before, despite having listened to my family (but particularly my mother, as she is Colombian) speak Spanish for years! (A couple of years later, however, I started to learn French and re-learn Spanish at secondary school, which helped me increase my foreign-language skills by a little.)

The basic storyline is that November seems to have lost some of his marbles in more recent days, and the other months (especially October and December) have to try to ‘heal’ him back into a sane mind. Though November initially tries to manage it himself, the loud noises he makes angers all the other months into marching in protest – either ‘cure’ November, or eliminate him from the calendar altogether (which will probably never happen in the considerable future). Realizing that November needs a professional medical opinion, October and December send November to a psychiatrist to try and get to the root of the problem. But will it work?

This story was actually inspired by another comic strip which I read… in a Spanish spelling and grammar book. (Inspiration can come from the most unlikely of places…) What the story basically boils down to is why the letter H is silent in Spanish, but does make a sound when paired up with the letter C, just as in English. So I thought, why not give this a month-themed twist with November playing the H and all the other months playing all the other letters of the alphabet to help him find his place in life?

A Very Merry Blogmas 2015! — Dec 25, 2015

A Very Merry Blogmas 2015!

Today is the 25th of December, and you know what that means?


And to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year, I’ve curated this little gallery of festive-themed artworks from years gone by and the present.

Merry Christmas from Surfing the Sea and me!

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