What's new?

365 Character Expressions Videos Challenge

Started a 365 character expression doodling project.


Drawing character expressions anime style, different moods and with some tips.


A collection of expressions to help you create more. Check out daily videos on Instagram or Facebook page.


Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/vanessabettencourtart/


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vanessabettencourtart/


Visit www.thevioletwest.com for my published books and subscribe for news on upcoming events or book releases.


Music Credit goes to: http://www.freesfx.co.uk

New Publisher Site


This is what I've been working so hard the past weeks. It's finally live. One site, all the books. The epic fantasy series catalog from the author Jacob Falling and author and illustrator Vanessa Bettencourt on a single site. Follow THE VIOLET WEST for updates on upcoming projects and events.

Shipping the books!

Books arrived and are perfect. I can finally start making my shipping preparations! Yay!

Drawing inside my "pizza-boxes-slice-of-life-favorite-pizza" to deliver soon to those who pre-ordered Notfrombrazil Volume II.
The book is available worldwide on Amazon online stores . 

Making of...

Moving... Foward

New city, new life, new projects!

Chicago is a great city and I'm loving all the art and diversity. In less than a month we decided to change our lives and here we are. A great change for the better. There is so much to see and do that we can plan for something different every weekend for the next two years at least. 


I never lived in a place where temperatures drop below 0 more than 5 degrees so I'm almost excited and fearing the cold. I can see Mr. Blizzard showing up in a Not From Brazil panel and freezing  into a Popsicle. I just can't imagine the beach (Lake Michigan frozen... but it happens) -Ojibwa Indian word mishigami, meaning large lake

Chicago- Lake Michigan - Summer
Chicago- Lake Michigan - Summer
Google photo of Chicago Lake Michigan Winter ( copyrighted to corresponded photographer)
Google photo of Chicago Lake Michigan Winter ( copyrighted to corresponded photographer)


I'm still trying to catch up with everything. We didn't have much time to plan and execute, so settling down and restarting will take a bit more than I expected. 


All seems new and sort of vacation and not at the same time. Different sounds, smells, temperatures and people. It's exciting and the adrenaline of it exhausts me and makes me want more at the same time.


Taking a lot of notes and saving all the inspiration to start creating soon.


It's so much that makes completely sense to start sketching and outlining a third volume. Who hasn't experience the stress and hilarious moments of moving into a new house? 

Check out Not From Brazil official site from now on, I will post some of the episodes as I outline the Not From Brazil volume III - Nesting: the art of moving without... divorce!



WE made it in a single day!



Today we celebrate more than the beginning of a new chapter. I am blown away by your kindness and generosity. Everyone has been so lovely.


It's been three years in a new country and new city, but I already carry so many friends ( close and virtual) with me to my new location. It only makes me grow as a person an artist even more. 


Thank you so much to those who donated and in a few hours made my goal possible. 


To those who donated $20 or more, I will mail a personalized copy of NFB volume II ( first copies and edition). 


We met the goal, but you can still use this app to make pre-orders of Notfrombrazil Volume II ($20)

I will be publishing it July and shipping your books in August.


I can't wait to make more and share more with you.


Thank you for the Holy pony moment today between the coughing, the medicine, the packing, the checklists, the dust, the running away from spiders, the packing of all cutely before time ( we still need for the next six days...) making this goal was a great start!


So... Yeah! Thank you! ! You know who! Yes you!

Reaching a Goal before September!


"Buy me a coffee!" because there is no app for "buy me an ice cream" instead.


I have to thank the team of "Buy me a coffee" for giving artist and fans a secure and easy way of supporting out art. With just a simple button have the option of sending me $3 to my PayPal.


This motivates me and shows I deserve a coffee for my efforts so far : D Thank you!


A special thanks to the people who since last Friday used the app and helped me to come closer to my goal.

If I meet my goal soon, I will publish Notfrombrazil Volume II earlier than Summer. YAY!



All with your help I can also continue to post longer free episodes on notfrombrazil.com official website. A good way to celebrate 3 years of 500 free webcomic episodes so far.

comics, graphic novel, free, read online, free webcomic, read comics, graphic novel, relatable comics

Polly and the Black Ink free Stationary Paper

#stationary, stationary, free printable, print envelope, free, polly and the black ink free, polly and the black ink torrent, polly and the black ink books, polly and the black ink graphic novel, vanessa bettencourt art


All orders and thank yous are packed and ready to send. For more personalized signed books or portraits contact me directly : vanessabettencourtart@gmail.com


Here is a treat! Free Polly and the Black Ink 

free printable stationary... because I love snail mail.


Write to your friends or write to me I would love to get to know Polly's fans better. (subscribe and answer to the newsletter to request my address).


Free Printable Stationary Polly and the Black Ink
Envelope printable 8.5x11
Letter 8.5x11 and 6x9 sizes
Free Polly Stationary.rar
compressed file archive 2.3 MB

Blog Entry: Fan Art Mail!


Nothing like getting unexpected mail with fan art to brighten my day. 


I was just about to announce my new space on my official website for a gallery of Polly and the Black Ink when I got these beautiful drawings!


Notice how the young artist made a draft and planned the work first, this is too precious!

Thank you so much! 

See all the art I got today... click to enter gallery.

Do you want to send me your art? Contact me so I can provide the address or send a photo to:



Holy Pony! 


Heir of Scars, Polly and the Black Ink Volume I  volume II sold out! It was three Awesome days!


My heart raced with joy when parents and new fans came back the next days to buy the entire collection.


To see how kids and adults' eyes shone while speaking of Polly and Paws made my day. Three days of fun! More photos and news with the newsletter special edition at the end of this week. 


Polly and the Black Ink falls into the All-Ages category graphic novel (+7) with lots of mystery, adventure and superpowers. 


Studio Ghibli and animation fans understand  that it is not only for kids. They get it so well that they saved me from trying to convince them to get the books. Thank you!


P.S: Reviews are very important to us. If you can review the books on Amazon it will help us a lot. 

Review here.


I am setting up a gallery for Fanart. If you have art from Polly and the Black Ink that you would like to see in the gallery contact me.


I still have some of the FRIDGE MAGNETS available. 

I will send a free package to who buys a Polly book from me, or you can get it directly from me (free shipping) just send me an email

Commissions: Flyers & Posters

cartoon flyer commission, humor flyer, poster commission, flyer commission,  cartoon commission


When I am not making cartoons for Notfrombrazil, I create funny flyers and posters for individuals or companies advertise their events.


The next one is for the Cinco de Mayo Party event hosted by the theater.


Frequently Asked Questions:


How do you design the flyers?

A: I gather all the clients information and list of needs for the event.

Usually they already know my Notfrombrazil cartoon style and humor and they trust me to come up with a composition that expresses all their needs. Then, I send them the draft and they suggest changes if needed. It's a team work and my goal is to make the best end product. 

The more information I get from the client the easier it is to come up with something that pleases everyone.



Any other questions contact me: vanessabettencourtart@gmail.com



Saturday at the Library



We had a great time talking about our process of construction worlds and characters for novels and graphic novels.


Thank you so much for coming to see us and for all your input. And Alexandria Library for having us. (Some of you made into the funny pages - click cartoon)


Next event will be at Awesome con - check the event section for more detail.


March Events Coming soon

Supper Happy Valentine's Day!

Motivating! Energizing!

long distance relationship, comics, graphic novel, humor, couple story, long distance love, humor & entertainment, kindle comics



Notfrombrazil climbing the ranks!

It's an official best seller graphic novel in Humor & Entertainment Category!

Looking at this past weekend's reports. This feels awesome. Thank you so much! Got your copy? Free with Amazon Prime.

Não do Brasil a escalar os tops! 
Ao olhar para os relatórios deste ultimo fim-de-semana. Muito obrigado a todos!

Ja tens a tua cópia?  Leitura grátis para quem tem amazon prime.



Collect and Organize. What do you collect for your work? Are you keeping those favorite recipes organized?


Build your library to quick access and get inspired.


I have lots of notebooks and sketchbooks with relevant information that saves me time from searching online for the right and appropriate term.


Today I am updating my onomatopoeia collection so I can use it while I create my graphic novels and comics.

Visual sounds are always funny and give a lot of motion and action to the graphic novel panels and pages.


For those who are not creating art, keep a journal of your memories and thoughts.


What are you working on?

St. Valentine's SALE!

st valentines day, valentines day, perfect valentines gift, couple love, love, comics, webtoon, webcomic, cartoons, couple story, couple love, long distance relationship, how to survive long distance relationship, how to travel



What a perfect St. Valentine's Day. A very funny and relatable Long Distance Relationship Graphic novel book with extra tips on how to survive a long distance relationship and how to travel without stress. All in comics format. 70 Pages full color comic book. On Sale. 

Great Reports!

graphic novel, adventure, superhero, fun, cat, comics, superhero comics, books for kids, librarian books, books for all,
🥇Looking at the 2017 reports, I can happily say that the most adventurous and colorful graphic novel Polly and the Black Ink was definitely a BEST SELLER and Notfrombrazil made the TOP 100 in several categories.
All thanks to you.
Hope this year my art continues to bring you more adventures and fun!
Also, thank you for the new reviews, that is a great help to reach more fans. Don't let Paws fall... so keep them coming. I love to hear your opinion. Especially if your cat has something to say to PAWS!
Have a great week!
Ao olhar para os relatórios de 2017 posso alegramente dizer que a série de banda desenhada mais aventureira e colorida Polly and the Black Ink foi definitivamente um Êxito de Vendas e o Não do Brasil alcançou o top 100 em várias categorias.
Tudo graças a vocês.
Espero que este ano a minha arte continue a trazer-vos muitas aventuras e divertimento!
Quero agradecer as novas valiosas críticas e estrelinhas que são uma grande ajuda para alcançar mais fans. Não deixem o gato Paws cair, vamos mantê-lo no topo por isso venham dai mais opiniões. Eu adoro saber o que estão a pensar. Especialmente se o vosso gato tem algo a dizer sobre o gato Paws!
Tenham uma excelente semana!

Third Week of #Dreamuary


#drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat  #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat #drawingchallenge #fantasy #fantasyart #fantasycreatures #fantasyworlds #bookillustruation #childrensbookillustration #characterdesign #superherogirl #traditionalart #vanessabettencourtart #illustration #kidsillustration #pencildrawing #childrensillustrat

15 #Colors  (What if I'm color blind?)     #dreamuary2018


I never liked colors.


I liked to draw characters and object in black and white from a flat piece of paper and show it to no one. I would not go to fancy stores to get my supplies. There were no such stores where I lived. I used the coal from the fireplace or my grandmother's morning coffee to paint.


I created only for myself.


Years later I became a teacher for the first time. Only then, I learned the value of colors. 

Every morning I would have different hues in front of me that changed with mood or life events. It was my first year as a teacher and some of these children were taller than me and had never learned to spell their names, but they were versed in ways of life that no one their age or my age or any age should be. 


They had no interest in the beauty of our language, poetry, literature, grammar rules or following the syllabus... Why would they? Mostly the exercises in the textbooks asked them to write about their life... to confess, to make it real, to leave proof on a sheet of paper and sign it at the end.


I began to see their colors dim. 


Every day a little bit more monochromatic and dull. I put the textbooks aside and I brought art and music into the classroom. I reached for each one of their doors. I fought to open it one by one and visit their worlds. I showed them new words, grammar rules, poetry, taught some to spell their name for the first time and gave them tools to express their true colors. Behind my classroom door, we built a safe world where they could be. I had to break a few rules, but I'm sure I've learned from them as they learned from me.


And then the police came and took one of them away. 


I stopped being a teacher for almost five years. I came back to a class of six-year-olds years later to find some vibrant innocent colors, some... not so much... 


More doors to open... I accepted the challenge this time armed with colors, art and hope. Hope to be amazed by the promise of greatness that some already showed, and to be able to fight horrible secrets that were already there to unveil in some of the children...


Always with the understanding that good work had to be done besides teaching: I am, You are, He is... 


Titcher "how do you say banana in English?" 


I dedicate Polly and the Black Ink to all my students.



#fightingdepression #forabetterworld


To participate: doesn't have to be a drawing, post anything you want to share that relates to the daily themes that might inspire you, be part of the community and say hi - Make it kid-friendly, please.

Facebook group: Dreamuary 

Instagram hashtag dreamuary2018 - everyone is welcome




Dreamuary First Week



The new group #dreamuary January challenge has been a great way to spend January. It's been a very happy January with fantasy creatures, pencil drawings, laughter and a way to know people better. 


January has became more interesting.


Join us and let the daily theme inspire you to share.

X-mas Special: An American Family

Starting the year sick, but with a very Special Christmas long episode… very long) dedicated to all of those who always stayed close all year, no matter how many oceans or continents keep us physically apart.

I confess that I did embrace technology.

I was able to talk with my friends in Europe, see what presents some were getting, the X-mas trees in their city, their Christmas decorations, what they were having for Christmas meal, share moments of laughter (anytime).

I don’t feel that I belong to a city anymore, or that I can live isolated.
When we are young our bedroom is our world, we grow up and school becomes our world, then the city where we live and work, I can say that I have friends in every corner of this planet. I treasure them, From Portugal to Brazil… Spain, Canada, Germany, Belgium, France, UK, Finland, Brunei Darussalam, Peru, Japan… because now I’m in a long distance relationship with all of you.

If you’re kind, then you’re welcome to be part of this connected family. Join us.

My 2017 X-mas presents!

My January Dream #dreamuary

With my eyes on the future! 


As an artist I have to live in the past when I'm learning and studying old masters, in the present when I'm creating, failing and creating more and in the future, when I'm setting goals, planning new projects and sharing them with you.


December is my favorite month of the year, and it's full of joy, inspiration, creativity, happiness and hope... but then January comes.


What do you think when you see January on your calendar?

If you're like me... you dread it! But January doesn't have to be such a scary monster!

So... for 2018 I decided to create #dreamuary and turn my January into a month full of art of magical creatures and imaginary worlds - not where dreams come true but made of dreams.


Up to a challenge?


You can be part of #dreamuary. How? Follow each daily theme and post whatever it inspires you... a photo, or a drawing, a gif, video or music, a quote... anything you want to share, a thought or an emoticon. (no sex, violence of any kind, keep it kid friendly)


Pressure free. You don't have to submit every day just when the daily theme inspires you or you feel like it.

Post to the Facebook Event (here) or add the hashtag #dreamuary #dreamuary2018 on Instagram (if you prefer to participate there). This will happen every January for the following years and soon I will be excited to see January arrive as I am always excited about Halloween and the following holidays.


Let this be a great way to start the new year! See first theme here.


Newsletter subscribers will have access to exclusive videos of my drawing process.


Instagram moments


Portugal is a semi-biographical awarded graphic novel by Cyril Pedrosa where the author explores his Portuguese background. He presents us a character who has lost the love to create new books and draw. We join him on his trip to Portugal. 
There, we can feel the warmth of the people and how quaint they seem to be at the same time. 
Because it smells and sounds like home, I can hear their voices, the accent, the crickets at night, the excited screams coming from random windows of people rooting for their favorite team, people talking of life before... And Salazar, Salazar... 


Among the cacophony of well known traditional expressions - which the author doesn't translate because there is no completely accurate translation possible for the tone of voice, the humor or the melancholy in some of the expressions. 
Oh, filho... Ta bom! Nao faz mal! Ta bem! Tas prai a falar "fraciou"... 
Expressions that are so well known to be the soft rumble of Portuguese culture... from their favorite sports to politics and several meals and pastry in between.


I love the line work, the colors and the visual transitions of the panels. You almost can feel the movement, the silence, the absence of hope, the finding of a new beginning...

And the winner is...

Thank you so much to everyone who participated.  I am happy to share with you the three lucky ones.




This year I painted a very special postcard that I like to send to friends, family and fans who actively supported my art during the year.


I can see by their thank you texts that some arrived with a few stamps and ink on the painting. Oh, well... Lesson learned! Envelopes next time! T_T

Polly and the Black Ink Books

Polly and the Black Ink, the last Volume - 140 pages long is finally out, closing the first arc of Polly Mason story.
Get it on amazon online store or personalized signed copies from me.

The Last door...

Polly Mason has collected the doors of everyone she knows. Friends and family, enemies and foes, heroes and villains.

These doors, which have kept their secrets safe, have also taken her into magical worlds, allowing her to know people better for who they truly are.

Although Polly Mason can visit any of their worlds, she cannot enter her own. It's up to her friends to save her core now, and no one thought her world could be so challenging and full of wonder.


Newsletter new format

Great news, the new monthly newsletter will be scheduled for the last Saturday of each month starting January 2018.


This is what you should expect to get each month. News on books, art process, releases, access to sales, contests and seasonal gifts. Sneak peek behind the scenes and art tips. Scheduled for the last Saturday of each month.


Be sure you check your promotion or social folders (gmail) and/ or spam folder if you missed the last newsletter.


Subscribe now so you won't miss any goodies.

Here is December 2017

Heir of Scars Cultures & People : Ieru

Ieruscan Girl - Heir of Scars epic fantasy Series

The Ieru (HYAY-roo) inhabit the western regions of Somana, separated from the heart of the Republic by the mountainous Erentian Divide. For the most part, the Ieruscan (hyay-ROO-skuhn) people are nomadic tribes, who roam the steppes and deserts of Ierusca by horse or by foot.


The Ieru are a darker-skinned people, with a culture and language unique from the Somanan, Aeman, and even Aesidhe peoples. Somanan and Aeman records prove that the Ieru inhabited the continent before them, and Aesidhe oral histories support the same. It is clear that their people were once more widespread, particularly on the southern portion of the continent, but were gradually pushed back by Somanan settlement and military action.

Read full article here.

Beyond the Cliff & Courage progress


It's been a long journey since chapter I.


The editing, formatting and illustrating process of each chapter took more time than writing and imagining the story but it will worth the wait.  


Every project and book becomes a path of wonderful discoveries and creation of fantastic unusual characters and their worlds. I can't wait to share the final project with you, but for now here is a bit more of my work in progress. 

For Beyond the Cliff & Courage epic fantasy, I've decided to design my own font and header to make each chapter more special. Besides the headers, each chapter will include at least four black and white illustrations ( I got carried away with some sections and drew about eight to ten illustrations).


I have about 50 chapters, which means... a lot of drawings per chapter. It's a long and slow project, but the finished book will be worth it. The illustration that won't make into the book will be turned into color prints or an extra booklet - I still have to think about it. The priority is to finish this project with as much quality as I can muster.


I would love to hear your thoughts. Don't be shy and leave a comment. I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Time Lapse Digital Painting

...finishing new art to send to the printer and make some postcards this year. A sneak peek of what kind of art you will be seeing from me from now on as the next projects grow and take form.


It's finally time to get back to those old and complex fantasy worlds that I have been developing for so long. Can't wait to get to the part filled with magic, fantastical creatures including... Dragons!


Polly and the Black Ink 5 graphic novel volumes will keep you company. Each volume with 110 pages and the last one with 140 that will be available December 2017. 


2018 will be exciting, with a lot of work in progress and behind the scenes. Some of the content will be exclusive to newsletter subscribers so if you don't want to miss any contests, free books, news and seasonal gifts make sure to subscribe.


You can subscribe to www.notfrombrazil.com  or to www.vanessabettencourtart.com 

(please check your spam folder for the newsletter if you missed one)

Notfrombrazil - weekly newsletter - Fridays at 11 am Eastern Time

VioletWestEntertainment - monthly newsletter - next Saturday, December 2

And so it ends!