March 2009



Creating a graphic novel but stopping along the way to take some photos, eat some food and admire great art!

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Heather “Wassy” Ryerson’s Artwork

Gamer chick and New York resident Heather Ryerson has provided two pieces to showcase her work. Love the manga influences in the work especially the big eyes! Her colouring in both pieces are great although very different, with the first a darker style in the moon glow and the second much softer as though in a “dream-like” sequence.

Showcase 1 :

Showcase 2 :

How did you get the name Wassy?

It’s a nickname my husband gave me way back in high school when we were dating and has stuck since then.

Thanks! I just had to know. So how did you get into the artistic field?

I’ve always been into studying and creating art for as long as I can remember. But after leaving high school, pursuing art as a career didn’t really enter my mind. I tried out liberal arts, psychology, and human services during several years of college. Nothing seemed to fit. During this time I kept producing artwork as a hobby and eventually started doing commissions because I was getting so many requests. I FINALLY had a “duh” moment and realized I was truly happiest when creating pieces for others, so decided to seriously pursue illustration as a career.

That’s fantastic! It’s always great when you have the moment of clarity in knowing what you want to do as a career. What happened next?

I had a two-year setback when I became something of a medical mystery and developed macular degeneration, first in my left and then right eye. I was (and still am) incredibly fortunate to be under the care of an amazing retinal specialist who was able to save most of my vision. While I have a completely blind spot and an area of distorted vision, I’ve learned how to work with my vision changes. I have a good prognosis now and my doctor is also a real encouragement.

Wow, I’m glad you didn’t give up and kept going with it! So besides illustrating, what do you do for fun?

I love gaming (especially RPGs), movies, comics, and anime. Another large passion of mine is music, specifically progressive rock/metal. It’s REALLY hard for me to name a single favorite band… but I guess my holy trinity would be Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree, and Opeth. If a band I like is anywhere in the northeast, you’ll definitely catch me headbanging in the audience! I am a concert ADDICT. I was able to meet Dream Theater and give them some artwork last May.

How would you describe your work? Any artistic influences?

I’m my harshest critic by far, so sometimes when I describe my work, it contains many expletives. But otherwise I’d describe it as a blend between American comic styles with definite anime/manga influences. I love exaggerated proportions/features. Chris Bachalo is one of my biggest influences. I’m also a very large fan of CLAMP work with their liquidy, flowing style and extreme attention to tiny details. I do also like to try styles I’ve never tried before and experiment in as many mediums as I can. A few other of my faves would be Adam Hughes, Yoshitaka Amano and Brian Froud.

Artistically . . what do you enjoy doing? Sequential work? Pin-ups?

My artistic self-indulgence is pin-ups. I LOVE pin-ups. LOVE THEM. I’ll soon be starting a personal project featuring courtesans of all different regions/time periods done as pin-ups. I can pin-up and run wild with outfits! I would really REALLY love to do art for Playboy one day. They showcase some truly awesome talent for interesting pieces.

Thanks for your time! Heather was nice enough to provide a quick step by step guide for an inked archer. I mentioned a more “action” pose of a female archer shooting off some arrows. Check it out at the end of this post.

For more information check out her site :

She’s current open for commissions :

Sketches to establish pose:

Detailed sketch on selected pose :

Inked Archer :

4 Responses to “Heather “Wassy” Ryerson’s Artwork”

  1. Wassy says:

    Thank you so much for doing this write-up, Stephen! I still don’t think I hold a candle to the other artists, but I’m extremely grateful ^.^

  2. SIGMATE says:

    Thank you for your time Wassy! Also thanks for the archer work, I think it’s always nice to show sketches to a final product. Your work is a lot better than mine (I’m still practising)!!

  3. Frankie B says:

    I have to say Heather you have a wonderful style that remarkably lends itself to “Tarot Card Illustrations”. My wife is a reader, among other things and when I look at your work it reminds me of some of her cards. Your use of color is atmospheric/ethereal and lends well with your strong ink lines. I’m always happy to see female artists drawing female characters. The form and movement of the bodies are very natural and helps me as a male artist to work better on my own female forms. I wish you well in your endeavors and hope to see more of your artwork in the future.
    peace ;)

  4. Gaetana says:

    This article is just great! Especially for beginners.

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