Creativity and garbage in the Magic Kingdom

By Al R. Young By Al R. Young 

I have been to Disneyland only twice: Once, in 1957, as a boy too young to remember much more than fright at the sight of alligators swimming toward our boat for the sole purpose of eating me, followed by water buffalo approaching us in hopes of dessert. The second visit came in 1988 when Nancy and I took Ashton and Elspeth to visit the park while I attended an industry conference nearby.
I was working in an advanced product research group at the time, and having been primed by intensive inquiry into such topics as creativity, user interface design, error handling, etc... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Inspiration and creativity


Forgotten Films: Batchelor Mother (1939) and Pocketful of Miracles (1961)

By Al R. Young  Everyone has at least one must-watch holiday film that heightens anticipation, enlivens the season, and simply speaks Christmas to the heart--and most of us probably have several.  This pair of "Forgotten Films" is less about  paving the way to Christmas morning, then about traveling the sometimes flat days after Christmas, when watching spirits visit Scrooge or angels visit George Bailey suddenly seem part of an exciting past that sadly won't return for another three-hundred-and-sixty-something days... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Christmas, Forgotten Films, Recommended viewing


Tips & Techniques: To mix, or not to mix . . .

By Al R. Young By Elspeth Young

I can remember, as a small child, eagerly watching my father get out his palette, paint tubes, medium, and palette knives to carefully mix colors for a day of intense painting.  In fact, one of my earliest memories is watching him mix thick oil paints for a wall mural he painted in my bedroom.  I watched from the perch of a stool--with my elbows practically in the paints--while he mixed and matched and mixed again.  I became so intrigued that my long pigtails dipped right into the colors... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Color, Tips and techniques


Tips & Techniques: Don't stand behind me while I paint

By Al R. Young
One of the unwritten laws of the studio is never to stand behind me when I paint.  I'm always backing up (on a sudden and without looking) to take the long view of what's happening to the image on the easel. For every painting session at the easel, I probably walk a mile in the relatively small space in which I work.
For me, the primary reason for using an easel has relatively little to do with applying paint.  Instead, it has a great deal to do with the need to easily and quickly view the work from different vantage points, in order to more fully see it and refine it accordingly... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Inspiration and creativity, Tips and techniques


New Issue of the Storybook Home Shipped - Heidi's Christmas

By Al R. Young The Heidi's Christmas issue of The Storybook Home Journal is now available from Al Young Studios.  This issue features these regular sections:Decorating - Deck The Walls (4 pages)Hearth - My Little Chamber (2 pages)Kitchen - Einfach (6 pages)Music - Your Song Was Beautiful (1 page)Garden - Wanted So Much To See The Flowers (2 pages)Workshops - All At Once It Was Finished (2 pages)Bookshelf - Johanna Spyri (1 page)Attic - Living Richly Without Being Rich (1 page)Garret - The Perfect Christmas (3 pages)Heidi's Christmas is the 73rd issue of the Journal, published bi-monthly since November 2000... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 12 No. 1, 2011, News, The Storybook Home Journal issues


Illustration: A Damsel Came To Hearken

By Al R. Young
High-resolution digital copies are available from the Studios for use as illustrations.  Use the serial number—appearing below the thumbnail—in requesting permission from the Studios (see links at the bottom of this page for detail).


The correct form of attribution when publishing an image is specified in the license agreement issued to the publisher by Al Young Studios.Guidelines for requests to copy or publish artworks created by the Artists of Al Young Studios

Guidelines for commissioning Al Young Studios to create illustrations
Return to this portfolio
Browse all portfolios
Browse Newsroom articles about Illustration
The original image is available for sale, please contact us for details... Read more »

Tags: A Damsel Came To Hearken, 2011, People and Stories of the Bible


Ashton R. Young completes new oil painting - "A Damsel Came To Hearken"

By Al R. Young A Damsel Came To Hearken is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: A Damsel Came To Hearken, 2011, Ashton R. Young, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, Women of the Bible Art Collection


"Still here!"

By Al R. Young In episode 14 of the 8th season of Monk (Tony Shalhoub's television series about a world-class detective battling severe psychological disorders exacerbated by the murder of his wife), detective Adrian Monk wins his 12-year struggle for reinstatement as a member of the San Francisco Police Department.  But after only a few days back on the force, Monk is inexplicably disillusioned with his own hard-won success.  He consults his psychiatrist, who points out that Monk is not only best suited to be an independent consulting detective with the SFPD, but that he has actually been happy in that role for 12 years -- years that Monk perceived as an ordeal... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Inspiration and creativity


An abridged Hans Brinker Christmastide countdown

By Al R. Young Traditionally our St. Nicholas celebrations have included fat loaves of grattiman (also known as grittibanz in some parts of Switzerland) and when the children were little the writing of letters to Santa to be picked up as he made his St. Nicholas rounds across the planet. But  even when there's no time or inclinations for such activities, there's still a part of St. Nicholas festivities that can fit in whatever the demands of the day--the commencement of a seasonal read of one our favorite tales, Hans Brinker or the Silver Skates by Mary Mapes Dodge... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Christmas, Recommended reading


The Substance of Hope by Elspeth Young featured in December 2011 Ensign

By Al R. Young
Elspeth's painting of Anna the Prophetess, entitled The Substance of Hope (pictured left), is featured on page 33 of the December 2011 Ensign Magazine.  The painting illustrates the following quotation from Patrick Kearon:

"We learn from Anna's experience that we can live faithfully through all weathers if we are consistent in our fasting and prayer and if we do not depart from the temple in our hearts. If we haven't yet had the opportunity to travel to a temple and receive its blessings, we can still enjoy the blessings that flow into our lives when we worthily hold a temple recommend... Read more »

Tags: The Substance Of Hope, 3rd-party Publications, 2011, News


Tools, Supplies & Operations: A-frame Easel

By Al R. Young Building studio equipment isn't always an option, but when it is, it can save a great deal of money and provide custom solutions that can be adapted to the many ways in which technique and projects change over the years.
Of the 13 easels that are part of the studio's equipment, three were purchased new, two came to us second- or third-hand, and the remainder were designed and built in the studio.  The purchased easels include two of the suitcase-style travel models that can be set up easily enough, but require graduate study in order to reconstitute as a suitcase... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Tools supplies and operations


I Shall Be Whole by Al R. Young featured in book about the Savior

By Al R. Young Christ's Gifts to Women, published by Covenant Communications, featured I Shall Be Whole, by Al R. Young.  The painting is part of Al Young Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection.... Read more »

Tags: I Shall Be Whole, 3rd-party Publications, 2011, News


Heidi's Christmas carols

By Elspeth C. Young
Christmas isn't Christmas without inspiring music, and Heidi's Christmas just wasn't complete without a carol arrangement.  Any reader of Heidi knows that carols are never specifically mentioned within the book, but Spyri left ample clues as to her own hymn favorites, and it was just a small step from there to choosing Heidi's very own Christmas carol.  Though every translation I've ever seen of Heidi seems to choose different hymns and poetry to replace Johanna Spyri's original choices for the Grandmother's "old prayer-book with beautiful songs," looking at the original German, Spyri was very specific in her choices... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Christmas, Music


Elspeth C. Young completes new oil painting - "I Will Uphold Thee"

By Al R. Young I Will Uphold Thee is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: I Will Uphold Thee, 2011, Elspeth C. Young, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, Pioneer Art Collection


Thanksgiving gluten-free alternative to stuffing...

By Al R. Young Facing the first Thanksgiving with our newest sweetheart-of-a-niece-in-law just diagnosed with gluten intolerance, this was our concoction designed to give some of the satisfactions of stuffing, without the wheat-laden woes. Of course it doesn't go inside the bird, but it's as moist and satisfying as it if had. And while it's unlikely that anyone's going to mistake it for grandma's stuffing in a blind taste test, it's a very nice, very filling side dish all on its own.  We thought we'd share it in case any of you face similar challenges either for yourselves or your holiday guests... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Holidays, Recipes by Nancy Young


Ashton R. Young completes new oil painting - "Unto The City Of David"

By Al R. Young Unto The City Of David is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: Unto The City Of David, 2011, Ashton R. Young, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, The Messiah Art Collection


Christmas is coming!

By Al R. Young Heidi's Christmas is almost here!  We're just putting the finishing touches on this latest issue of The Storybook Home Journal, featuring the delights and magic of a Christmas on the Alm.  While you're waiting, mix up a batch of Cup O' Cocoa Cake Batter and bake away!  You can use some left-over hot chocolate or cocoa from one of these cold autumn evenings as the third of a cup of "very dark cocoa" called for in the recipe, or use the equivalent as listed below... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 12 No. 1, 2011, Christmas, Recipes by Nancy Young


Forgotten Films: Arsenic and Old Lace (1944) and The Ex Mrs. Bradford (1936)

By Al R. Young  I'm sure I'm not the only one who would never think of classifying Arsenic and Old Lace as a "forgotten film," but after an hour of listening to a movie reviewer and his radio-talk retinue of phone-in suggestions for viewing on All Hallows Eve, and never hearing Frank Capra's classic recommended by anyone--the grisly, ghastly, macabre, and just plain silly apparently being preferred--I don't want to miss the opportunity of recommending what I consider to be the Halloween equivalent to Capra's ultimate Christmas film:  It's a Wonderful Life... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Forgotten Films, Holidays, Recommended viewing


Project Commentaries: I Will Uphold Thee by Elspeth Young

By Al R. Young

Since early February of this year, Elspeth has been working on a painting of Mary Elizabeth and Caroline Rollins—two pioneer sisters who bravely saved what they could from a violent mob who destroyed the early Church's printing press July 20, 1833.  The painting depicts both teenage girls with the precious galley pages of The Book of Commandments which they salvaged while they were pursued by armed members of the mob. In desperation they sought refuge in a nearby cornfield--an occurrence Mary movingly described in her published autobiography... Read more »

Tags: I Will Uphold Thee, 2011, Costume and props, Pioneer Art Collection, Project commentaries, Tools supplies and operations


New Issue of the Storybook Home Shipped - Anne at School

By Al R. Young The Anne at School issue of The Storybook Home Journal is now available from Al Young Studios.  This issue features these regular sections:Decorating - The Only Time I Have For Dreaming (3 pages)Hearth - It's A Sight To Behold (1 page)Kitchen - A Big Box Of Preserves (5 pages)Music - Singing Softly To Herself (1 page)Garden - The Acquaintance Of Echoes (3 pages)Workshops - Home O' Dreams (2 pages)Bookshelf - Children At Heart (1 page)Looking - To Remind Him Of Her (2 pages)Attic - Living Richly Without Being Rich (1 page)Garret - A Sanctuary In The Treetops (3 pages)Anne at School is the 72nd issue of the Journal, published bi-monthly since November 2000... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 6, 2011, News, The Storybook Home Journal issues


Sleepy Hollow Pumpkin Pie

By Al R. Young
Unlike most recipes researched for The Storybook Home Journal, we've named this for The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, not because we have the slightest proof that either Washington Irving, Brom Bones, or Ichabod Crane ever dined upon it, though "yellow pumpkins" from Baltus Van Tassel's acres suggested to Ichabod's mind " the most luxurious of pies"--but because it's a rich, wholegrain practically-meal-in-itself pumpkin dessert that, like generous Mynheer Van Tassel, is "satisfied with its own wealth, but not proud of it... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Holidays, Recipes by Nancy Young


1,712 fine-art prints now available from Al Young Studios

By Al R. Young
Al Young Studios now offers 1,712 open-edition prints through its online art gallery at alyoung.com.  This total includes 853 giclee-canvas prints as well as 859 prints on paper in a great variety of sizes.

Artworks featured in the prints include original oil paintings already part of the fine art collections on the site:  All 40 paintings in the Women of the Bible Collection, 16 of the paintings in The Messiah Collection, the 10 paintings in the Heroes of the Book of Mormon Collection, and four of the paintings from the High Valley Collection... Read more »

Tags: 2011, News, Oil paintings and prints


Tools, Supplies & Operations: Wood-storage easel

By Al R. Young The wood-storage easel in the shop is mounted to the wall above the south side of the chop table.  Two kinds of materials are stored on it:  moudlings and sheets.  The mouldings are arranged on wire shelves attached to the face of the ribs of the easel.  Medium and large sheets of plywood, hardboard, and other materials rest on the ledge of the easel and lean against the wire shelves for the mouldings.

In the following photograph, the row of wall brackets holding the top of the ribs of the easel are visible just beyond the garage door track... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Tools supplies and operations


Tools, Supplies & Operations: Wire scrap-baskets

By Al R. Young Most of the scrap storage in the shop is bin-based, and, as such storage goes, it's quite effective, but the scrap buckets under the shop tables and the wheelbarrows under the workbench never have worked well for the thin, long, and often flimsy stuff that gets left over from ripping, not to mention the small stick-like stuff that seems to accumulate when no one is watching.  The wire baskets not only accommodate these leftovers, but are surprisingly convenient for searches because it's easy to see what's there... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Inspiration and creativity, Tools supplies and operations


Book of Mormon compendium features The Joy Of Our Redemption by Al R. Young

By Al R. Young The Essential Book of Mormon Companion, published by Covenant Communications, featured The Joy Of Our Redemption, by Al R. Young.  The painting is part of Al Young Studios' Women of the Bible Fine Art Collection.... Read more »

Tags: The Joy Of Our Redemption, 3rd-party Publications, 2011, News


Simple knits for cherished babies

By Al R. Young
By Elspeth YoungSeveral years ago I stumbled across Simple Knits for Cherished Babies by Erika Knight—a delightful British volume which immediately attracted my attention.  I hurried home with book in hand, two skeins of some wonderfully soft and rustic-feeling wool (bought for pennies on clearance), and my no. 5 needles; and I eagerly set to work tackling a matching stockinette–stitched cap, sweater, and booties perfectly sized for a newborn's first winter.  You might have caught a glimpse of the finished outfit snugly tucked into a friendly basket near our antique singer sewing machine on page 12 of our Just David issue, but there just wasn't room in the Journal for more than a passing glance, and I thought it was high time I recommended Knight's delightful designs... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Hand crafts, Recommended reading


After Just David: Pasta Soup

By Al R. Young
 We were going to toss this recipe in with "Pot-Boilers Pâté" as a great use for the broth that remains after boiling the meatloaf; but ran out of space so we decided to share it here. But even if you don't have any cooking liquid leftover from making the recipe featured on page 21 of the Just David issue of The Storybook Home Journal, you can still create this rich and simple pasta soup by substituting any nice savory beef or chicken stock. It's especially nice if you've got a really fabulous homemade one... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Recipes by Nancy Young


Forgotten Films: Angels in the Outfield (1951) and 40 Pounds of Trouble (1962)

By Al R. Young
Orphaned heroes and heroines abound in children's literature.  From Oliver Twist and David Copperfield to Mary Lennox and Pollyanna—not forgetting those in our most recent and upcoming journals, "Just" David, Anne Shirley and Swiss-Miss Heidi—the value in the stories and their impact carries on even for children with highly intact, two-parent families because we all find ourselves "orphaned" in society from time-to-time. Whether it's the first day of kindergarten or college, a nursery school or a nursing home—we sometimes find ourselves making our way amongst strangers in a strange land, and reading about the courage and successes of other "orphans" bolsters our own bravery... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Forgotten Films, Recommended viewing


The Sunflower House

By Al R. Young
Perhaps the greatest joy we've gleaned from creating The Storybook Home Journal is the many friends we've met along the way.  One such kindred spirit is Janet, a bright, amazing, and beautiful mother of five, who recently contributed to The Veranda in our Beatrix issue, as well as The Veranda in our winter jaunt with Susan Coolidge's What Katy Did Next.

This morning she sent us word that she planted up her own real-life version of the "Sunflower House" garden plan we presented in The Boxcar Children issue in early summer 2005... Read more »

Tags: 2011, The Veranda


Great design

By Al R. Young This quote we love is a summation of common man interior design, which comes from Marco Pasanella in his savvy and easy-to-absorb book astutely published by Simon & Shuster way back in the pre-market-meltdown days of 2000—Living in Style without Losing Your Mind:
"A closetful of cash, a boatload of workers, and a couple of years will get you an expensive, labor-intensive home that takes forever to complete.  It might be good.  More often, however, great design comes from having imperfect circumstances, from having too little money, labor, and time... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Beauty and home, Home quotes


Tools, Supplies & Operations: Electrical circuits and peace of mind

By Al R. Young The tombstone, at Monticello, marking the grave of Thomas Jefferson, bears the inscription dictated by the creative genius, whose diversity of interests, pursuits, and accomplishments remains legendary.

Every human being accomplishes things in life for which--like Mr. Jefferson--they might wish to be remembered, and ever since our visit to the Sage's home I have mused from time to time (sometimes seriously and sometimes in a more jocular frame of mind) what might be the three things I would dictate as an epitaph... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Tools supplies and operations


Farewell Sawrey, welcome Just David

By Al R. Young

We're finding that Beatrix Potter's spell of delight is as potent as it was when Peter Rabbit first raided Mr. McGregor's garden, as evidenced in the kind response we've received on the Summering in Sawrey issue—some subscribers rating it as their favorite issue ever.  We also received these charming images (above)—thanks to subscribers Rebecca Copeland and Rowena Edlin-White, based on Beatrix's ongoing "sideshows" that seem never to lose their endearing appeal.
Just David shipped on Monday, and we hope visiting the backroads of New England will give readers as much pleasure as our stay in Sawrey... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Music, The Veranda


New Issue of the Storybook Home Shipped - Just David

By Al R. Young The Just David issue of The Storybook Home Journal is now available from Al Young Studios.  This issue features these regular sections:Decorating - I Love Beautiful Things (4 pages)Hearth - A Sky-Like Canopy Of Blue (1 page)Kitchen - Pot-Boiling (4 pages)Music - The Beautiful World He Left (1 page)Garden - In Tantalizing Mystery (4 pages)Workshops - A Very Princess Indeed (2 pages)Bookshelf - Eleanor H. Porter (1 page)Attic - Living Richly Without Being Rich (1 page)Garret - A Partnership For Life (5 pages)Just David is the 71st issue of the Journal, published bi-monthly since November 2000... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 5, 2011, News, The Storybook Home Journal issues


Elspeth C. Young completes new oil painting - "I Always Wanted To Own A Strad"

By Al R. Young I Always Wanted To Own A Strad is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: I Always Wanted To Own A Strad, 2011, Elspeth C. Young, High Valley Art Collection, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints


Tips & Techniques: An Artist's Eye

By Al R. Young Not long ago, we received the following comment:
With your layered or indirect [painting] approach, how do you manage to maintain working from the subject over this time with all the variations of light, weather, seasons, the decay of a still life or busy and expensive models, etc.? Do you resort to photos?
Factors such as media, individual style, techniques, available tools, and the messages (to borrow a term from communication theory) are major influences in how an artist approaches and completes each work... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Tips and techniques


Just Just David and Pane Siciliano with a twist

By Al R. Young  As our work commenced on our late summer issue of The Storybook Home Journal, in the end we were too besotted by Eleanor H. Porter's endearing novel, Just David, to be satisfied by sandwiching it in between a summer anthology also starring the Miss Billy Books and Six Star Ranch. So we decided to adapt our editorial calendar to feature just-Just-David for our summer jaunt with Eleanor.  Miss Billy and Texas will simply have to wait while we go back to school with Anne Shirley, spend Christmas in the Alps with Heidi, and while away winter evenings with Rachel Ray... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Recipes by Nancy Young


Happy Bastille Day! Lessons from history ala Brioche a tete

By Al R. Young While Charles Dickens and the Baroness Orczy make it easy to celebrate Bastille Day either by sharing a hammock with a fat novel such as A Tale of Two Cities or The Scarlet Pimpernel, or spending the evening in front of a film adaptation of one or two of the aforementioned tales, we've found that, once again, our Brioche has something to say on the matter Of French history.  Instead of being instructed in French phrases, however, it brings Gallic history right to the table... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Brioche a tete, Holidays


Illustration: So They Brought Their Little Children

By Al R. Young
High-resolution digital copies are available from the Studios for use as illustrations.  Use the serial number—appearing below the thumbnail—in requesting permission from the Studios (see links at the bottom of this page for detail).


The correct form of attribution when publishing an image is specified in the license agreement issued to the publisher by Al Young Studios.Guidelines for requests to copy or publish artworks created by the Artists of Al Young Studios

Guidelines for commissioning Al Young Studios to create illustrations
Return to this portfolio
Browse all portfolios
Browse Newsroom articles about Illustration
The original image is available for sale, please contact us for details... Read more »

Tags: So They Brought Their Little Children, 2011, Book of Mormon characters


Elspeth C. Young completes new oil painting - "So They Brought Their Little Children"

By Al R. Young So They Brought Their Little Children is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: So They Brought Their Little Children, 2011, Elspeth C. Young, Heroes of the Book of Mormon Art Collection, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, The Messiah Art Collection


More from Mr. Jeremy Fisher's larder

By Al R. Young There may not always be time to create a full Jeremy Fisher "Roasted Rosemary Grasshopper" presentation-loaf prior to a Miss Potter-style picnic or party; but using the same dough (pages 12-13 of Summering in Sawrey with Beatrix Potter) you can still create sandwiches--not from butterflies like Jeremy's--but from "Hopper Heads" simply by following the instructions below, allowing to cool completely, then adding your favorite sandwich fillings.  They may be the only truly welcome insect near the Lily-Pond!

Click on the images, below, to enlarge text instructions... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 4, 2011, Recipes by Nancy Young


Summer on the way and The Tales of Beatrix Potter

By Al R. Young Summering in Sawrey is at last on its way, regrettably slowed by Al's chemotherapy and hospital time, as well as some surgery on my part (with a second surgery to come soon.)  Thanks to all our subscribers for their patience, as well as their concern and prayers!  

The "Good Bunny Supper Cake" featured on pages 16 and 17 of The Kitchen—though more authentic to Peter Rabbit's tale when fixed with blackberries—may be even better with this summer's blueberries substituted for an equal amount of the seedless blackberries called for in the recipe... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Beauty and home, Recipes by Nancy Young


New Issue of the Storybook Home Shipped - A Sawrey Summer with Beatrix Potter

By Al R. Young The A Sawrey Summer with Beatrix Potter issue of The Storybook Home Journal is now available from Al Young Studios.  This issue features these regular sections:Decorating - Take Great And Useful Pleasure (4 pages)Hearth - A Beatrix Potter Painting Book (2 pages)Kitchen - Next Time I Want To Give A Party (6 pages)Garden - I Have A Little Garden (4 pages)Workshops - Mrs. Rabbit's Pot Rack (2 pages)Bookshelf - Beatrix Potter (1 page)Attic - Living Richly Without Being Rich (1 page)Veranda - [untitled] (1 page)Garret - A Ferret In The Burrower's Guild (2 pages)A Sawrey Summer with Beatrix Potter is the 70th issue of the Journal, published bi-monthly since November 2000... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 4, 2011, News, The Storybook Home Journal issues


Project Commentaries: So They Brought Their Little Children by Elspeth Young

By Al R. Young Elspeth is working on a new painting for the Studio's Messiah Collection.  It will depict a mother bringing her little child to the Savior, as described in 3 Nephi 17: 11-24.  Though the Savior, Himself, is not visible within the painting, the young one stretches forth her hand to Him, and in turn, His radiant light encircles her in hope, healing, and, symbolically, the ministering of angels.  
The young one's earnest reaching for Christ is intended by the artist to symbolize the need for all mankind to "repent, and be baptized in [the Savior's] name, and become as a little child" (3 Nephi 11:38)--to be a visual reminder of the Savior's teaching that we too must reach for Christ and "be converted, and become as little children [to] enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 18:3)... Read more »

Tags: So They Brought Their Little Children, 2011, Project commentaries


A string bag fit for Mr. Alderman Ptolemy Tortoise

By Al R. Young   "And Mr. Alderman Ptolemy Tortoise brought a salad with him in a string bag." ~The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher

Though originally designed with Eric Kastner's thoroughly delightful  Emil and the Detectives in mind, Elspeth's unique pattern for a whimsical string market bag is also an excellent fit for the Alderman's "string bag" seen in Beatrix Potter's illustration from The Tale of Mr. Jeremy Fisher (pictured below right).

So, while we're busily working away on the upcoming summer issue celebrating Beatrix's beloved Tales, you might pull out your Emil issue and have some hand-crafting fun... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 9 No. 5, 2011, Hand crafts


Treating children to the best

By Al R. Young For several years since a dear friend and subscriber, Angelyn Bryce, gave me the "Treasury of Classic Children's Literature," a compilation from the glory years of St. Nicholas Magazine, I have been particularly captivated by an introduction by the late William F. Buckley, Jr.

Observing the Buckley family, each child remarkably brilliant—whether famous or not—it's nice to know what kind of influences fed their young minds.  Obviously fine children's literature was an essential part, the kind that Mary Mapes Dodge, (in Buckley's words, "author of the imperishable Hans Brinker") so successfully attracted to St... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Home quotes


Tips & Techniques: Paint What You See

By Al R. Young By Elspeth YoungRecently, a gentleman approached me at the conclusion of an art lecture, and eagerly asked me this singular question: "When you paint faces, do you paint the opposite color of the highlight in the shadow area?"
His question startled me.  I'd never really thought about it.  I considered for a moment and then stammered out a reply:  "I suppose I do sometimes," I mused, reflecting on countless times I've added greens, purples, and blues to the reflected light or shadows on a portrait... Read more »

Tags: The Trial Of Faith, 2011, Tips and techniques


Forgotten Films: The Man Who Never Was (1956) and I Was Monty's Double (1958)

By Al R. Young It's no secret that the British entered WWII critically under-manned and ill-equipped against German forces that had been building up a massive militia backed by advanced armaments.  What Great Britain lacked in brawn, however, they tried to make up for in brains; and some clever wartime deceptions were among the results.  Two such plots were adapted for the big screen in the 1950's—and either (or both) make for some satisfying summertime viewing.
The first bit of British Intelligence derring-do recounted on film was based on Ewen Montagu's best-seller, The Man Who Never Was, adapted into a 1956 film of the same name... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Forgotten Films, Recommended viewing


When mangoes are at the market

By Al R. Young  Of course, mangoes are a luxuriant fruit when eaten fresh—richly perfumed and slightly tart.  But if you catch a really good sale—or if the fruit gets overripe, or never seems to get quite ripe enough—try this easy-to-create, pectin-free jam.  It's wonderful on toast, waffles, omelets, yogurt or ice cream. If the sugar is omitted, or greatly reduced, it also makes a fabulous sauce for fish, curried meat, or slathered onto really good bread as a substitute for mayo in turkey or roast beef sandwiches... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Recipes by Nancy Young


Project Commentaries: The Miracle Of Forgiveness by Al R. Young

By Al R. Young Al is days away from completing his latest painting referenced in our April 13th post.  Check back for a sneak peek at the finished painting!... Read more »

Tags: The Miracle Of Forgiveness, 2011


To get the whole world out Of bed

By Al R. Young  I was first introduced to John Masefield's poetry by my fourth grade teacher, who had us copy out poetry for penmanship exercises.  Since my penmanship was never a strong point—like Charles Bingley in Pride and Prejudice, I "prized" the "power of doing anything with quickness," since that was the only calligraphic skill of which I was a "possessor"—I was usually done early and could roam over the poetry, catching my tongue on the rhythms and memorizing the bits and pieces that lingered there... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Beauty and home, Holidays, Home quotes, Mothers Day


Bretagne Cinnamon Bread, a pastry for Mother's Day

By Al R. Young  If not-nearly-as-fattening-as-it-tastes is a recommendation—this bread is bliss.  It's perfect for Mother's Day, even if you're both giver and recipient, because it's easy to create as well as luscious.  We concocted it alongside the "Grand Leddy Bannock" for Greyfriars Bobby, but since it's nearer a huge, and continentally chic sticky bun, rather than a Selkirk Bannock, we saved it for the site.   
If the instructions below seem unclear, simply use the same process to create the pastry layers, that appear on page 17 of Greyfriars Bobby... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Holidays, Mothers Day, Recipes by Nancy Young


Tools, Supplies & Operations: Two cleaners not to be without

By Al R. Young Often in life, the "playing" part is a good deal more congenial than the "cleaning-up" part, and oil painting is hardly an exception.  Just when you're too whacked to paint any longer, the tools of the trade can require a rather onerous amount of scraping, swishing, rinsing, and scrubbing to stand ready for future painting sessions.  At our Studio, we've found that the pain has been eased considerably by two readily-available cleaning agents not always associated with artistic endeavors; and we've enjoyed their time-and-labor-saving benefits for a long time... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Tools supplies and operations


A beautiful beginning to May

By Al R. Young May was my favorite childhood month of the year—summer vacation would begin before the month was over, teachers were reading aloud more and testing less, and all the fragrant world was blossoming in pinks and whites.  There were shy, wobbly-legged colts in the pastures, alongside elegant weeping willows that were the exact shade of my "spring green" Crayola crayon.  All that seemed summed up in the lovely, lively-hued Mayday bouquet that showed up on our door yesterday—enticingly anonymous... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Beauty and home, Holidays


Illustration: Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts

By Al R. Young
High-resolution digital copies are available from the Studios for use as illustrations.  Use the serial number—appearing below the thumbnail—in requesting permission from the Studios (see links at the bottom of this page for detail).


The correct form of attribution when publishing an image is specified in the license agreement issued to the publisher by Al Young Studios.Guidelines for requests to copy or publish artworks created by the Artists of Al Young Studios

Guidelines for commissioning Al Young Studios to create illustrations
Return to this portfolio
Browse all portfolios
Browse Newsroom articles about Illustration
The original image is available for sale, please contact us for details... Read more »

Tags: Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts, 2011, People and Stories of the Bible


Elspeth C. Young completes new oil painting - "Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts"

By Al R. Young Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts, 2011, Elspeth C. Young, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, Women of the Bible Art Collection


Tools, Supplies & Operations: Squeezing every penny from a tube of paint

By Al R. Young
By Al R. Young

Separate his and hers toothpaste tubes have helped many a marriage—there's certainly more than one legitimate way to squeeze a tube and individuality should probably reign supreme.  But toothpaste doesn't generally run over two hundred dollars a pop, and something like a really splendiferous cerulean blue can.  So what's the best way to skin the oil-paint-tube cat—probably not by wringing it out in utter frustration, as shown at left, and chucking it out with a guilty promise of doing better next time... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Tips and techniques


Of tams and terriers . . .

By Al R. Young Poor Greyfriars Bobby had to patiently linger once more, much as he did in Eleanor Atkinson's beloved story; though this wait was due to a major computer meltdown here at The Studios.  He's off and "louping" now, however, and should show up in some mailboxes as early as today.

Baroness Burdett-Coutts, the patroness of many a good cause, who magically materializes in Greyfriars Bobby as "the Grand Leddy;" was much older than she appears in this endearing portrait when she came to visit Bobby... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 3, 2011, Hand crafts


Tips & Techniques: Turn the problem upside-down

By Al R. Young Strange as it may sound (we often surprise Studio visitors with this one!), working on a painting while the panel is turned upside-down, as shown above, can be a marvelous problem-solver during an otherwise difficult painting session.  In the final stages of her painting of Phebe, for instance, Elspeth has spent several painting sessions over the last couple of weeks, with the panel inverted.  This technique enables the artist to "forget" that he or she is painting a face, an eye, a hand, etc... Read more »

Tags: Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts, 2011, Tips and techniques, Women of the Bible Art Collection


Forgotten Films: Enchanted April (1991) and Without Love (1945)

By Al R. Young Whether April is glowing and warm or gray and drear--and around here it can be both--we hate to let the month go by without viewing these two films at some point, especially at the end of some sodden Saturday or as a bright spot on a Friday night.  The 1992 film version of Elizabeth von Arnim's novel, Enchanted April, adapts itself particularly well to the former time slot, as it begins with the lackluster and ends with the luminous.  And luminous is certainly the best descriptor of every performance from its intimate and stellar cast of Josie Lawrence, Miranda Richardson, Polly Walker, Joan Plowright (who earned an academy award nomination for her performance) Alfred Molina, Michael Kitchen, and Jim Broadbent... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Forgotten Films, Recommended viewing


New Issue of the Storybook Home Shipped - Greyfriars Bobby

By Al R. Young The Greyfriars Bobby issue of The Storybook Home Journal is now available from Al Young Studios.  This issue features these regular sections:Decorating - Such A Clean, Shining Little Kitchen (1 page)Hearth - Tammy's Woolen Bonnet (1 page)Kitchen - After Some Manner Of Magic (4 pages)Music - Bagpipe, Fife, And Drum (1 page)Garden - Of A Hardy Breed (3 pages)Workshops - A Cozy Little Inglenook (2 pages)Bookshelf - Eleanor Atkinson (2 pages)Attic - Living Richly Without Being Rich (1 page)Garret - Kite Tails And Balloon Voyages (3 pages)Greyfriars Bobby is the 69th issue of the Journal, published bi-monthly since November 2000... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 3, 2011, News, The Storybook Home Journal issues


Project Commentaries: The Miracle Of Forgiveness by Al R. Young

By Al R. Young
One of the first questions visitors to the Studio want to know is how long it takes to complete the kind of paintings that are part of the Collections in the Studios' portfolio.  And while the number of hours and months devoted to a particular work can be informative, the other part of the story is the manner in which those hours are scattered across the calendar. Some paintings, for example, follow an almost uninterrupted path from start to finish. Most paintings, however, do not... Read more »

Tags: The Miracle Of Forgiveness, 2011, Project commentaries, Women of the Bible Art Collection


The domesticated thistle

By Al R. Young If like most gardeners you prefer that the beauty of the Scottish thistle contain itself to the house, rather than inflict its thorny presence on the perennial border--you might wish to reopen the pages of the Little Lord Fauntleroy issue of The Storybook Home Journal (Vol.6 No.3) where Ashton, Elspeth and Al remade a forlorn thrift store Grandfather clock over into the fabulous treasure pictured here.

Or if you prefer to ply a needle rather than a paintbrush, try the handsome thistle design, below, by Paula Kate Marmor from her treat-of-a-website, Elizabethan Blackwork: The Blackwork Embroidery Archives... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 6 No. 3, 2011, Beauty and home, Hand crafts


Looking ahead to Anne

By Al R. Young    "Just imagine—this night week I'll be in Avonlea—delightful thought!" said Anne, bending over the box in which she was packing Mrs. Rachel Lynde's quilts.  (from Anne of the Island)

We are excitedly looking forward to spending autumn with irrepressible Anne Shirley.  In preparation for the issue's Workshops article, Ashton has begun crafting an exquisite one-of-a-kind cedar and alder hope chest worthy of "packing Mrs. Rachel Lynde's quilts," and filling with treasures for Anne's future "house of dreams... Read more »

Tags: 2011, HL-Hand crafts


Sharing delight

By Al R. Young  While swatting away at the Greyfriars Bobby issue of The Storybook Home Journal, we came across this delightful rendering of Rudyard Kipling's poem, "I Keep Six Honest Serving-Men," from The Just So Stories, that had been used in the opening of a nearly century-old textbook.  We'd like to dedicate it to all those parents worn out with answering the endless questions that a day in the presence of a preschooler can afford.  We also wanted to call to the attention of those unfamiliar with his work, as we were until recently, illustrator W... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Beauty and home


Project Commentaries: Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts by Elspeth Young

By Al R. Young  The Apostle Paul's praise of the disciple Phoebe (found in Romans 16:1-2) inspired Elspeth to begin creating a painting of this noble  "servant of the church" whom Paul extolled as a "succourer of many, and of myself also." The detail images, right and below, give a quick glimpse of some small portions of costuming and Phoebe's hand, blocked-in and ready for layers of scumbling and color glazing.
The verb "succor" has been used throughout both ancient and modern-day scripture to denote Christ-like compassion and active selfless service in behalf of those in special need... Read more »

Tags: Here Bring Your Wounded Hearts, 2011, Project commentaries, Women of the Bible Art Collection


Tips & Techniques: The journey into color, part 3

By Al R. Young
One of the most important skills involved in looking is to see objects not in terms of the labels by which we talk about them, but in terms of the puzzle-pieces of color-shapes by which we see them.

The following image is a detail from an oil painting. The detail presents some of the foreground foliage in the painting. To paint foliage like this is to paint a multitude of shapes instead of painting "leaves." (There are, of course, numerous ways of rendering such a subject... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Color, Tips and techniques


Nestling into Eastertide

By Al R. Young
Every year since our first Spring issue, A Girl of the Limberlost, subtitled "Keeping to the Seasons," we've tried to keep the Easter season in mind as well.  There have been painted eggs, rabbit rolls, bunny breads, floral cakes, Easter cookies and more.  (See Easter Baking 2010 for a little taste.)
One of our favorite projects for Easter, however, is still the bird's nests we created for A Girl of the Limberlost--it's a satisfying bit of crafting that we recently recreated to share with a dear friend... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Easter, Hand crafts, Holidays


I Shall Be Whole by Al R. Young featured in Ensign Magazine

By Al R. Young The inside back cover of this month's Ensign Magazine features I Shall Be Whole, an original oil painting by Al R. Young, representing the woman healed by the Savior, as recorded in Luke 8: 43-48 and Matthew 9:20-22.  

Here is a little bit about the painting's message, written by the artist:

Even though this painting portrays the woman who had an issue of blood, the scarlet color of her clothing and the light reflecting in the woman's countenance says something to all of us about our own problems... Read more »

Tags: I Shall Be Whole, 3rd-party Publications, 2011, News


Forgotten Films: Foreign Correspondant (1940) and Stage Fright (1950)

By Al R. Young While "Hitchcock" and "charming" are an unlikely pairing in a word association game, this particular pair of Hitchcock films undeniably fills the bill.

Before ropes, psychos, and torn curtains entered Hitchcock's repertoire, he made some little cinematic delights where humor vied with suspense for top-billing and American and British stars had way-too-much-fun with their roles. Each of the films was quirkily flawed—the endings usually seem to be a surprise to everyone, even Hitchcock... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Forgotten Films, Recommended viewing


The delights of small imperfections

By Al R. Young Britain's bit-of-everything-aesthete, Sir Terence Conran, provided this wonderful observation in his 1985 book, Terence Conran's New House Book: The Complete Guide To Home Design, which we've benefited from around our house, so we share it with any like-minded individuals, here:

"People often become so obsessed with practicality, that things must be invulnerable to finger-marks. In the process, they make their rooms look like airport lounges that could be hosed down after a nasty incident... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Beauty and home, Home quotes


New Issue of the Storybook Home Shipped - Betsy and the Great World

By Al R. Young The Betsy and the Great World issue of The Storybook Home Journal is now available from Al Young Studios.  This issue features these regular sections:Decorating - Italian Lessons (3 pages)Hearth - And Naturally She Had A Bath (1 page)Kitchen - A Tray Full Of Everything (5 pages)Music - "It's A Pretty Good Irishman You Are" (2 pages)Garden - Hearts And Flowers, Please (2 pages)Workshops - Dazzling In Morning Freshness (2 pages)Glass - New Clothes In Paris (2 pages)Attic - Living Richly Without Being Rich (1 page)Garret - Pieces Of Sunshine And Bright Blue Sky (4 pages)Betsy and the Great World is the 68th issue of the Journal, published bi-monthly since November 2000... Read more »

Tags: Vol. 11 No. 2, 2011, News, The Storybook Home Journal issues


Ireland Rose

By Al R. Young A long-time subscriber and past contributor to our Storybook Home Veranda (see Vol 6 No 5: Clover and In the High Valley) emailed us today, and shared the exquisite Valentine cookies she decorated this year. We immediately begged permission to share them with all of you, along with a link to Ireland Rose, her lovely Studio blog, which she graciously granted.

Though Valentine's Day is now past, we felt that any moment when the heart's hungry for beauty is the perfect time to devour some sheer loveliness--so, feast your eyes on these! And thanks, Rebecca, for gladdening these hearts as well as ours... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Holidays, The Veranda


Betsy And The Great World

By Al R. Young Betsy Ray and her Great World is finally making its way into yours. One of the recipes that we ran out of room for in the SBH Kitchen article, "A Tray Full of Everything," was Bavarian Breakfast Bread—meant to be from Betsy's stay in Munich. It's too delicious (and too quick to concoct!) to be entirely omitted; so we serve it up here instead, while Betsy and the Great World and other recipes from all over Betsy's Europe wend their way through the mails.



Bavarian Breakfast Bread By Nancy Young 2 cups milk, warmed to about 115°
1 tablespoon dried yeast
½ cup sugar
½ cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons salt
About 5 cups or more flour, white or whole wheat (5 cups will do it if it's whole wheat, may be closer to 6 cups if it's white)
1 cup raisins
A little beaten egg

Place the milk in the bowl of a heavy-duty mixer and stir in the yeast... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Recipes by Nancy Young


Project Commentaries: For This Child I Prayed by Elspeth Young

By Elspeth C. Young One thing I've learned over recent years is that no painting is finished when it's done. The subject matter and the symbolism a painting contains never ceases, as long as there are real people looking at it. In fact, the essays accompanying our paintings don't even begin to really tell the "story in the painting," since that "story" adapts to meet the gaze of those who bring new perspectives, experiences, and insights to that image day by day... Read more »

Tags: For This Child I Prayed, 2011, Costume and props, Tools supplies and operations, Women of the Bible Art Collection


Learning to speak French with your baked goods

By Al R. Young At our house baking brioche is always a celebration, but hardly an event. We seem to bake brioche at least once a week. Sometimes our brioches à tête turn out picture perfect, and at other times they simply turn out worth a picture.

There are times, as they sit cooling on our baking rack, that they suggest critical French phrases to us--very instructive when learning the lingo--and so periodically we'll share some of the simple brioche phrases our little loaves teach us. Here's a little tête à tête à la brioche:



Rose motif copyright by Elspeth Young 2010... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Brioche a tete


Betsy And the Great World coming soon

By Al R. Young We're concocting some sweet and savory indulgences perfect to carry "on a tray" to delight the senses or soothe away sorrows a la Betsy and the Great World. (The chocolate's simply to get us through all the tough formulating, taste-testing, and the subsequent waiting while goodies bake away in the oven. We're an impatient lot.)
We're also busy delving into 1914 French fashion, developing some shutters fit for an Alpine "Paradise," decorating with Italy in mind, and much more.

(Artwork, above, by Alfred Stevens... Read more »

Tags: 2011, Recipes by Nancy Young


Illustration: Go Forth To Meet The Bridegroom

By Al R. Young
High-resolution digital copies are available from the Studios for use as illustrations.  Use the serial number—appearing below the thumbnail—in requesting permission from the Studios (see links at the bottom of this page for detail).


The correct form of attribution when publishing an image is specified in the license agreement issued to the publisher by Al Young Studios.Guidelines for requests to copy or publish artworks created by the Artists of Al Young Studios

Guidelines for commissioning Al Young Studios to create illustrations
Return to this portfolio
Browse all portfolios
Browse Newsroom articles about Illustration
The original image is available for sale, please contact us for details... Read more »

Tags: Go Forth To Meet The Bridegroom, 2011, People and Stories of the Bible


Elspeth C. Young completes new oil painting - "Go Forth To Meet The Bridegroom"

By Al R. Young Go Forth To Meet The Bridegroom is the newest oil painting to be added to the line of original artworks from Al Young Studios.

Click here to see a larger image of the new painting, read the artist's commentary, and look at the selection of prints--if any are available.... Read more »

Tags: Go Forth To Meet The Bridegroom, 2011, Elspeth C. Young, Legacy, News, Oil paintings and prints, The Messiah Art Collection, Women of the Bible Art Collection