Peacock Spider – Maratus elephans

Back in July 2019 (can we even fathom how long ago that was??) I took a vote from my patrons over at my Patreon page. It was decreed I’d needle felt a bowhead whale — AND a peacock spider. I made the bowhead a while back, but this guy has been languishing in my studio far too long. I am profoundly proud to finally announce his completion!

Peacock spider males are famous for their incredibly colorful abdomens, which some can unfurl like a banner for their mating dances.

He is a Maratus elephans specimen. Yes, the name is referencing the elephant-looking design on his flashy abdomen. The blue is sort of shaped like an elephant face with a trunk down the middle with ears off to the sides.

Photo of a maratus elephans from the website (so many amazing photos!)

Real peacock spiders are tiny – some species are as small as 2.5 mm! My sculpture is about 135 mm long, or 5.5 inches.

He is needle felted wool over a thin wire armature. All his joints are easily articulated and even his display flaps can be folded down. His eyes are plastic hot glued in place.

The legs took hours and hours. There are so many, many, many legs.

Move the slider to make him dance

To get a peek behind the scenes of how I made this guy, join my PATREON!

You’ll also get other cool benefits, like a chance to win your own needle felted oddling and vote to decide on what I make next!

Head over to my PATREON page to become part of the team

Want to take this guy home with you? He’s available in my etsy shop: Needle felted Peacock Spider – Maratus elephans

Lemon curd cheesecake

This year marks the ten year anniversary of the artists’ group, Colony of Coastside Artists, CoCA for short. To celebrate, I made a lemon curd cheesecake and brought it to our meeting.

The piped trim is sour cream buttercream frosting.
The crust is the classic graham cracker crumbs with butter.
I made lemon curd for the first time for this cake!
I had never attempted cheesecake before and this was almost a disaster! I was using a no-bake recipe and couldn’t for the life of me get the filling to thicken up and set. I finally moved it to the stovetop and added agar agar.
I was worried how it would turn out, particularly the texture, but it was well received at the CoCA meeting.

Congratulations to CoCA and especially Patt Sheldon who runs the group nearly single handedly! It’s been wonderful being part of the group and I applaud all the effort that goes into it.


I participated in @keshrt’s 100 Days of Sketching Challenge in 2019. All my drawings for the challenge can be found on my Instagram @familiaroddlings but I want you to be able to see them here on my website.

I also used a ballpoint pen to participate in Inktober 2019 and @theofficialsadghostclub‘s Thinktober, which is dedicated to raising positive mental health awareness.

I will continually add more sketch work here.




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Inktober 2019 and Sad Ghost Club’s Thinktober





Kaleb Sleeping Portrait

I drew a crayon portrait of my twin sister’s oldest child, Kaleb, for Christmas. This spirited little one is such a fantastic bundle of energy, it’s these rare quiet moments that catch me by surprise and squeeze my heart even tighter. I adore this guy.

He turned three on December 30th.

Kaleb Asleep in Crayola crayons on illustration artboard

Paul and Andrew Portraits

For Christmas this year, I made crayon portraits of my two nephews on my husband’s side of the family. These adorable little guys are the sparkle in the family! Paul is three years old and Andrew will be two in February.

Portrait of Andrew, Crayola crayons on illustration artboard

Portrait of Paul, Crayola crayons on illustration artboard


I’m so happy to have them in my life. And on December 26th we welcomed a brand new little nephew into the family! I’m looking forward to drawing another portrait for baby Tyler.

Secret Forests

“Secret Forests” is a landscape series in which I explore the glimmers of hope in despair. Inspired by the growth that occurs after the devastation of forest fires and the birth of stars out of nebulae, I tried to convey the magic of new beginnings.

Secret Hope, oil on canvas 18″ x 24″

Forest, oil and chalk pastels on paper

Mourning Forest, oil pastel on paper

Wendigo Forest, oil and chalk pastel on paper

Coloring Book

These are coloring pages I made for teaching a Bahá’í Sunday school class for ages infant to four year old. I loved teaching the class and watching the little ones color these drawings with such creativity!

Please download the drawings and use them however you would like. Eventually I will upload larger resolution files for all of them for nicer printing. I would love to see the colored results!