Monday, December 28, 2009

New Year's Giveaway!

To celebrate the new year and all of my loyal blog followers, I will be giving away a copy of my newly illustrated "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" coloring book. The book contains pages to color with poses for each letter of the alphabet. It is wonderful on its own or as part of the collection, which includes the hardcover book and the poster. All will be available through the publisher's website, or at

But if you leave a comment on this post anytime now through January 4th, your name will be entered to win a free copy of the book. I will be giving away only one copy, but the drawing will be random and will take place on January 5th, and anyone can win! Good luck, and Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

What I'm Up To Now...

My latest children's book project is a book I am working on for Sylvan Dell Publishing, titled "Champ's Story: Dogs Get Cancer Too".

Below you can see the cover art. Champ and Cody are best friends, so I gave them both golden red hair. I used a combination of watercolors, gouache, oil pastels and pastel pencils for the art throughout the book:

And here was my pencil sketch for the cover. I wanted to show a deep, emotional connection and love between the main characters:

And here is a mock-up for the possible finished cover design by Sylvan Dell:

The book will be out sometime in 2010. The story is designed to help children with cancer understand and deal with their illness and treatments. But I also believe it is a great story for children dealing with the illness of a pet or a sibling or friend. I really think it is a great story, and I am honored to have been chosen for the project.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

"Little Black Ant" just released!!

In the springtime, little black ant leaves the colony in search for food.

Black ants are gathering nectar from the aphids in the rose garden.

Ant communication!

Flying ants leaving the nest in search of mates.

"Little Black Ant on Park Street" is FINALLY here! Here is what is available now...check The paperback is a LARGE paperback (11.5" x 8.5") .
Also available in micro hardcover (5 7/8" x 4 3/4"), with or without a plush toy. Not sure when the collector's edition hardcover will be released. Also check Borders and B&N.

If you haven't taken a look at my website in a while, check it out. I am always changing it and adding fun new art stuff!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Just Because...

For all of you freelance artists out there whose studio companion has 4 legs and a waggly tail, this is for you...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

And the ants go marching...

Hey!! Just wanted to give you another sneak preview from my latest book "Little Black Ant on Park Street". This is just a "detail" of one of the spreads in the book. Still waiting...I think it will be out in December. I'll let you know when I know!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

That Spooooooky Feeling!

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while have probably seen this before, but it is time to bring it out again! Have a Happy Halloween!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Birthday Cupcakes!

My friends know I also love being creative in the kitchen. Here are the birthday cupcakes I baked for my sister tonite. MMmmmm!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Illustration Friday - "Flying"

Flying... (I can't really write too much about this project yet....sshhh...) are some Sunday school learning materials I illustrated for LifeWay Christian Resources:

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Little Black Ant on Park Street

After several delays, the new release date for my illustrated book "Little Black Ant on Park Street" (Soundprints Publishing) is December 2009. I took these photos of the spreads with a pocket camera, and will repost them when I get actually high quality scans. But I was so excited I just had to show you now! It was hard to choose only 2 spreads from the book, but I cannot give away the story. So until December, this will have to satisfy!

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Meet Sunshine!

Every artist needs an assistant. This is Sunshine. She is my happy girl. :)

Monday, September 28, 2009

So Much News to Share!

"The ABCs of Yoga For Kids", illustrated by me and written by Teresa Anne Power, just won a second award this year! The book took home a bronze award in the 2009 Moonbeam Children's Books Awards in the Body-Mind-Spirit/Self Esteem category.

The accompanying "The ABCs of Yoga For Kids" Coloring Book is due out next month. Here is a sneak peek from the book:

(You can also download free coloring pages HERE!) While you are visiting the site, order the book and the NEW poster as a gift for the holidays this year!

Lastly, I have just signed a contract with Sylvan Dell Publishing to illustrate a new children's book. The book deals with a very important cause, and I am honored to have been chosen such a task. I cannot reveal too much right now, but I am super-excited, and will reveal more as the book evolves. Meanwhile, check out Sylvan Dell Publishing and their other great books.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

"God & Dog" by WJ Francsico

This is so sweet, I just had to post it. I saw it over at my friend Phyllis Harris's blog.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Autumn Color!

How can you NOT be inspired by all of the beautiful colors of autumn?? I know I am!

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Looking for Advice on Hiring an Artist's Agent?

Before you do, check out my latest article for the column "Illustrator Tips", featured in The Prairie Wind, the online newsletter of the SCBWI-IL.

Now for an update: I am currently illustrating "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids Coloring Book" for author and yoga instructor Teresa Ann Power. This coloring book features yoga poses with corresponding letters of the alphabet, and is meant to accompany the new poster and the original, award winning hardcover book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids". Teresa and I have had a great time working together and watching the success of the book grow! Check out this review in The US Review of Books.

Friday, July 31, 2009


Another addition to my black line art portfolio.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Farm Animals

I have completed 5 children's books this year: 2 trade publications and 3 readers. I am about to begin illustrating a coloring book, which will accompany the successful book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids", which was released this past March. I decided to begin adding black line art images to my portfolio a while back, and hope to pick up more work illustrating coloring books. It's a nice change of pace, since there are no colors to be concerned with, but rather I can focus on line weight and have fun just drawing. Right now I am working on a series of farm animals. I have added several new updates to my website, mainly in my illustration portfolios, so be sure to check it out.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

"The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" poster

Because of the success of the book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids", this accompanying poster is being released. I believe it will be sold through the official website, as well as It is meant to be used as a fun poster for kids to hang on their walls, as well as an instructional tool for yoga studios.

Watch for more info on an upcoming "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" coloring book as well.

Saturday, July 04, 2009


© Kathleen Rietz
As you celebrate Independence Day 2009, please remember our soldiers and their families who miss them.

Illustration Friday - "Shaky"

Wow! Millie's summer read was so scary, it made both her and her Chihuahua, Bobo, shaky!

Friday, May 22, 2009

All Finished!

I just completed all of the interior spreads for the new children's book "Little Black Ant on Park Street", for the Smithsonian's Backyard Books series. Now I am just waiting to see if there are any an illustrator, you always hope there are no revisions, but with 14 paintings, there are bound to be some. This was a 10 month long project, and I am so glad to be finished. The book is dedicated to my mom, whose presence I felt with me along the book's journey. You can watch for the book's release this fall. I will have more updates on my blog as I get more information on upcoming dates.

Here is the cover.

And here is a photo I took of the entire painting I made for the cover.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Tulips as BIG as my Head!

It is finally springtime in Chicago! I picked these tulips today to brighten up my studio. Wanted to share them with you.... Who wouldn't be inspired to make great art with these colors all around them?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Today's School Visit for Literacy Week

I was invited by Timber Trails Elementary School in Hoffman Estates, IL, to read and demonstrate yoga poses from my latest illustrated book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids". We had a great time! The book was a big hit. I was later informed that one little girl went home and immediately told her mom "We have to order this book, Mom!"

Monday, April 27, 2009

"The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" wins silver medal!

I am delighted to announce that my latest illustrated children's book "The ABC's of Yoga for Kids" has been awarded a silver medal in the category of Yoga/Pilates by Living Now Book Awards. Yay!

I will be reading from "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" and demonstrating yoga poses with a group of first graders at a local school here in Illinois this Wednesday as the school celebrates Literacy Week.

My current book illustration project, "Little Black Ant at Park Street", should wrap up by the end of May, and I am looking forward to getting back to new projects and blogging again. I miss you all!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Now Available at AMAZON!

"The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" is now available at!
Meanwhile, the book's author, Teresa Anne Power, is getting ready for another book signing, this time at Mystic Books in Venice, CA. She has been promoting the book locally at yoga studios and book stores.

I am looking forward to promoting the book here in Illinois as soon as I finish illustrating a book I am currently working on ("Little Black Ant at Park Street", Soundprints, 2009). I hope to make "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" available through yoga studios, health food shops, and book stores here in Illinois and nationally. If you know of any venues that would be interested in carrying the book, please email me. I can get books shipped out to you right away!

Also, if you have bought the book and would like for me to post your story or a photo of your child or yoga class using the book, please email me with your information as well! I have already received a few photos and many stories from parents whose kids love the book. I plan to post updates in the future.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Illustration Friday - "Fleeting"

© Kathleen Rietz
Childhood is fleeting - hold fast to your memories and don't let go.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Book Signing in Pacific Palisades

Book author Teresa Anne Power and me at the John Thomas Dye school in Pacific Palisades. It went very well! We sold lots of books and the kids had a blast!

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Time Has Come!

Hi Everyone! The time has finally come - I will be flying out to California in just a few short days to attend two book signings for my new illustrated children's book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids". One of the signings is at 6:30 Friday evening at Village Books in Pacific Palisades. They will be hosting a kids' pajama party and author Teresa Power and I will be demonstrating yoga poses with the kids and reading from the book. This event is open to the public, so come on out! I would love to meet you!

If you are unable to attend the signing, but would still like to order a book and have it signed, you may click the book icon in the upper right corner of my blog and order the book now. I will be signing books for orders placed this week. (Pls specify who you want the book dedicated to in the referral box when you place your order.)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Illustration Friday - "Intricate"

Since I am still busy illustrating my second children's book of 2009, I thought I would post something different for Illustration Friday. I used to have time to pursue other creative outlets, and really enjoyed making mosaics. I still have a basement full of beautiful glass, and some day I hope to get back to mosaics. For me it was very therapeutic....I could make whatever I wanted and no one could tell me if it was right or wrong. I always thought I would sell my creations, but I gave most of them away as gifts. This mirror still hangs in my kitchen.

By the way, to read an update on my school visit for the book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" later this month, click here. (You can also order the book by clicking on the book icon in the upper right hand corner of this blog page.)

Update ~ Book Signing

Here is a link to more details about the book signing I will be participating in later this month in Pacific Palisades, CA, with book author Teresa Ann Power. I hope to see some of you there. Get your signed copy of "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids"!

In this photo, Teresa demonstrates yoga poses to children.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Illustration Friday - "Breezy"

I will be so happy when I feel warm breezes on my face again. Winter in Chicago is much too long.
EDITOR'S NOTE: My latest illustrated children's book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" is now available for purchase! If you buy the book and want it SIGNED, pls specify in the comment box when you order that you were referred by me and that you would like the book signed. I will be signing books in L.A. at the end of March and your book will ship out then. Click the book icon on the upper right corner of my blog to order the book now. Thanks!!

Friday, February 20, 2009

The Latest News!

In just a few short weeks, my latest book "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" will be making its way all across the country and beyond, and I am SO excited! You can now get your own copy by clicking the link at the bottom of this post, or by clicking the little book icon in the top right corner of this blog page. But here I thought I would give you a little sneak peek inside the book.

I also wanted to announce that I will be at Village Books in Pacific Palisades, California on March 27th for a book signing with the book's author, Teresa Ann Power. We will also be presenting at a school assembly earlier in the day. I will announce future dates here on my blog as they become available.

So here is a peek inside the book. Remember, click on the link at the end of this post and it will take you to the official website where you can order the book for yourself!

The ABCs of Yoga for Kids book is a gentle introduction to simple yoga postures for children. Click here to learn more »