The Tale of Agnes MacPhee – A Monster Art Challenge

In the video, I demonstrate the method of how I sometimes use watercolor for character design. The video is sort a part of a "making of" project for a collection of my works to be eventually published.  "The Tail of Agnes MacPhee" is one of many illustrated, written and narrated projects I have in the works. Out of hundreds of personal projects I've started in the past, this one seems to be taking hold. So, I'm running with it. I guess you can say that this project is not just another Monster Art Challenge YouTube video. I am actually working towards something greater. Something much bigger. I really have an interest and appreciation for writing as well as Illustration and I hope to share that with you.

This also was a collab project I did with Lili Hartlep. She lent her voice talents to the protagonist of the story, Agnes MacPhee. Agnes is a young girl who outwardly manifested great inner strength from an unexpected life changing encounter. Thanks for doing a wonderful job Lili!


Bellow is the text from the story. I also supplied links to the definitions of some of the words I used. Hopefully this will help you develop a better understanding and use of some words and build your vocabulary as well as. Although I have a love of words and their uses, I am absolute crap at punctuation. So, read it with an open mind.  🙂


The Tail of Agnes MacPhee
written, illustrated and narrated by Bill Schiffbauer

Once upon a time in a land so green
was a hill side, a sea side, and the family MacPhee.
Now, between you and me, the Family MacPhee was as normal
as any strange family could be
But then, who is normal? I’ll ask honestly
I’m betting not one of you is entirely guilt free.

The family MacPhee had a family tree
With roots that had burrowed quite auspiciously
With fantastic tales of Monster and Fairy
Of which the amalgamation often proved quite scary
Nary a truth nor a lie could be told or believed
No proof! since none of the kin would concede

But, as with all tales from east to west…
There’s a protagonist in our story, or someone to route for, at best
The runt of the litter of nine and three…
Was the youngest of all… Agnes Louise Mathilda MacPhee

Aggie, for short.

Although a MacPhee, she was born to be
She wasn’t quite as MacPhee as she’d wished she could be
When the night sky was clear and the moon was full
Unbeknownst to the town folk, the family would rule.

They protected the lands from nefarious events
Of which poor Agnes would take amiss and lament
Poor Agnes just wanted to be a MacPhee
A REAL MacPhee. Not superfluously...
To run like the wind and sing to the moon
And fight with the strength of a fearsome typhoon

So one night, while home alone and sulking in her mead
A stranger came calling to the house of MacPhee
She watched him scale the wall and creep so silently
not thinking anyone was home to see.

She felt her gut churn as her head filled with rage
Her senses thrashed about like a mad chimp in a cage.
For that moment she knew this stranger was bad.
But she wasn’t afraid, in fact she was mad!

Like a butterfly unfolding from its constrictive cocoon
Her eyes all a glow, her hair all a strewn
And her teeth had just grown like a forest of trees.
…what do you want from me, Sir? Growled Agnes MacPhee
“My voice!” she thought. ”My voice sounds so weird!”
At that moment she realized, she was finally here

The stranger not knowing what he had just seen
just stood there in a puddle, no lake of pee
He’d just witnessed what no one had ever dreamt could be
the unexpected bloom of Agnes MacPhee

He dropped all his tools and again hopped the wall
With his hair now brilliantly white,
You could hear the gradual fade of his wails
as he ran like a Banshee  into the night.

Now… the Family Tree of the Family MacPhee
Grows more like wild lupine.
Cause adversity, proven quite often to me,
Can be deciduous yet fruitful at the same time.

So now I must end this true tale of hope.
But first you all needed to see
How the saddest little girl grew up be
the happiest MacPhee in history.

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