Monday Evening Post

No matter how hard I try….how much I try to fight it– I cannot, for the life of me, avoid bursting into tears during sad/dramatic scenes in movies… so why the heck did I watch Fried Green Tomatoes?
Stock by Yopinco

I remember, a few years back I was just channel surfing and I landed on one of the Pokemon movies playing on Cartoon Network. I had never seen the movie, nor was I really invested in the show, but I happened to land on the channel during an emotional scene. Ash was turned to stone– and all the Pokemon started crying….and so did I…. I wasn’t even on the channel for five minutes– didn’t even know why I was crying– I just burst into tears and continued my channel surf- wondering what the heck just happened!

Anyway, I like to watch movies, shows, documentaries, Ted Talks and YouTube while I draw to help pass the time, so I figured, why not watch Fried Green Tomatoes– it’s a good movie! I love it– and I figured that because I had seen it before, I wouldn’t cry this time around. Wrong! It got to that point in the movie where I just knew it was coming. My whole body tensed, I pressed my lips but I couldn’t fight the quiver– my face turned red just trying to stop my eyes from welling up with tears, but before the scene was over, I was bawling my eyes out, and there’s something about crying that just makes you want to go to sleep right after…so I did.

Woke up the next morning, and one of my eyes was just in pain. Apparently my tears dried and got in my eye. I spent like half a day just trying to stop the irritation– and…I did….only to leave my house for pizza on a windy day and get dust kicked up and blown into my OTHER eye. By this point I was so exhausted, I just went to sleep to ease the irritation in the hopes that I’d wake up in relief. So that’s how my Sunday went, which would explain why there’s no art for me to show for my Monday Evening post. Couldn’t draw because I couldn’t see >_<.

Fortunately I’m all better now! the irritation did subside, though my eyes are still a bit tired. I will give you guys a heads up though for what I had in store to show. Cats! I’m drawing lots of Cats!

Some of you may know Marc-Andre– I drew Oliver and Nubia for him during my 30 day Sketch Challenge. He liked my work and asked if I could do some official artwork for his blog, and I agreed! He also gave me permission to share the works in progress here with you guys! I do have some progress on it, but not enough to show, because of Fried Green Tomatoes, but you can look forward to an update featuring a work in progress of the cats from Katzenworld for Thursday’s Evening Post!

Thanks for reading, till next time, Enjoy!

Thursday Evening Post

Marble

Marble

This post is coming early, because Thursday is gonna be a busy one for me. So here goes!

I’m a little out of my element here, because I usually try to avoid drawing historical figures, especially those that are prominent to a particular faith. I feel this way because I want to portray people of historical significance accurately, and that’s not an easy thing when some figures have been idealized to look a certain way.

So when I was asked to draw the Virgin Mary, this was a dilemma I faced. Do I draw the idealized version of Mary, or do I take a more historical approach? I talked with the guy and he gave me the freedom to do what I think is best. That takes us back to one of my earliest blog posts–and my original sketch for the Virgin Mary who I drew as a traditional Hebrew Woman of that time, according to my understand after my research.

Now that I have time, I’m revisiting Mary, with the intent to finish this as an illustration, so I began by doing a figure study in the pose that I’ll be using. Just a heads up, I always draw figures in the nude before I clothe them. The reason I do this, and why most artists do this, is because it’s important to see the figure in order to accurately drape the clothes to the contours of the body. Just thought I’d add that tidbit so you guys know this is a standard practice for me.

Anywho! In doing this figure study, I also took the time to study women of Mary’s time, and their expected body types, and one point of reference I used were marble statues of women from ancient Rome and Greece. These woman were usually depicted as well rounded, and I thought it would make a good base for Mary’s body type.

Overall though, I’m trying to handle this drawing with care, out of respect for Mary’s historical significance. It may not be spot on, but, I’m trying my best with this one with the knowledge I have.
More updates on Mary soon! Till then, Enjoy!

Monday Evening Post

So it isn’t the evening, as I’m posting this– I don’t care, I breaks the rules!

Anyway, I want you to meet Tom from Catsatthebar! He’s a writer, photographer, and cat aficionado!

Portrait StudyNot to long ago, I published an article requesting help from my followers by asking them to allow me to paint a portrait of them, for  practice. As I mentioned- one of the goals I have, for this blog is to be able to engage with my followers and watchers– and what better way to do that, then to allow you the opportunity to take part in some of my studies as I learn and grow as an artist! I only had a few slots open and Tom was the first to join in!

I was really excited when I got his photo– he’s a handsome guy with an interesting personality and it shows!  This photo in particular is one that he said he was known for taking– where he just kind of stops and stares off into the distance at whatever happens to catch his eye.

About this painting– it’s not photo accurate. I never intended for it to be. These are simply excises; speed paintings done in a short amount of time, designed to try different techniques, broaden my understanding of using different brushes for different effects, playing with my imagination to enhance the lighting and ambiance, and to have a general understanding of facial structure and shapes. It’s important to me that I keep these paintings loose and avoid being a perfectionist. As the old saying goes– only practice makes perfect– and perfectness is simply a byproduct of practice. Overall, when doing these types of studies, the objective is to learn, embrace imperfection,relaxed and have fun while doing it.

Thank you again Tom for lending your handsome face!

TomfaceAs always, Enjoy!

Thursday Evening Post

Post Apocalyptic Sunrise

gaiaart2“I know you don’t talk much,” She began “But I wanna know, is this a world in ruin…or the perfect playground?”

The smirk could be heard in her voice when she spoke, leaving no question to what the answer was in her mind. To her disappointment, he felt no need to comment.

Ladies and Gentlemen– Meet our Post Apocalyptic Princess, and her companion– Dystopian Hero– two of three characters I designed for the items I created for Gaia’s March Monthly Collectable.  Feel free to check it out here!

So this illustration has two renditions. The first was originally done for Gaia in a different layout, for March’s Monthly Collectable, and the second I did for portfolio purposes.

It’s been an interesting learning experience for me, because I’m studying into concept art– and different methods artists use to reach a final product. One, in particular, involves doing character concepts, and then laying them out on a background. Hence, the purpose for these.

APConceptArt1This was my first time taking this approach, so naturally I had a rough time, but as per usual in my experience, the rough times usually leads to some valuable lessons learned.  The one I learned in particular this time around was that– if you think you can do better, go for it.

I say that because I went through two drafts of drawing these characters, before reaching the final version. This was the first.

APConceptArtI was actually really proud of this when I drew it 😀 but there were problems with it. Firstly, my female had some balance issues concerning her legs, and, I needed to draw them in a way that they could be arranged in a setting with background. These poses, quite simply were just too straight forward.  So, onto draft 2!

APConceptArt2I had to really think about the poses in this one, because I had the final illustration in mind. That, and I had to work out the issues with the girl’s standing position. One thing I learned from school, was that the feet should fall directly in line with the shoulders, if your characters are going to stand. Of course it’s okay to break the rule if you want to make something look awesome. Good exaggeration comes in handy, but I needed her to be more accurate for what I was going for.

Once I got the characters mostly drawn, I moved them over into another canvas, arranged and sized them, painted the background, then colored them.

Overall I love the process, and it’s something I’ll be doing going forward with these types of illustrations, all the while working to improve the process for myself.

As always, Enjoy!

Monday Evening Post

Window to the Past

Post PrincessI’ve heard it said before, that if you’re trying to find your dream job or career, just think of the the things you enjoy doing and you might find that the answer to your question, is closer to you than you think. I’ve loved drawing for as long as I can remember, even so, this was a delima for me for years, because, though I love drawing, I had no idea where I fit in or what market I wanted to appeal to…It’s only recently in the past two years that I came to the decision that I want to do splash illustration, and be a concept artist– specializing in character design.

Here’s the interesting part. I decided to dig around in some of my archives, looking back on the drawings I did, going as far back as elementary school…and immediately I noticed something. All I kept finding was character design, and splash-like illustration surrounding those characters. Some of them even included horribly written descriptions about who these characters were.

All these years, I’ve been searching for where I belong in the art world, and only by looking back do I realize I already had the answer…Flash forward, I’m doing exactly what I loved to do when I was little, and even better, I can see where I started, and compare it to where I am now.

Concept2
This window is a collection of some of my earlier drawings, oldest to newest between my years in elementary school through to high school. Compared to the drawing on the left, I’ve come a long way.

Now about the drawing on the left, it is a rough concept for a character I designed recently, named the Post Apocalyptic Princess, and she’s part of the splash illustration hinted in my banner, that I’ll be sharing with you guys later on in the week, so, there will be more about her and the project she was a part of, between now and the Thursday Evening Post.

All that said, if you were like me, wondering what you want to do for a living, trying to find your niche– maybe a journey to the past, will give you some insight on what you want to do with your future 🙂
As always, Enjoy!

Thursday Evening Post

“As much as we know and value art – as a society -we expect our best artists to starve.”

An excerpt in the Art Book Review  by Justin Perkins of: Make Art Make Money by Elizabeth Hyde Stevens

A few of you may recall me mentioning Justin before in earlier posts. He and I went to college together and we’re both illustrators, and often times we collaborate and work through ideas. While I’m big on video games and movies, his thing is books. Unfortunately because I have a short attention span, sitting down to read anything more than articles is hard for me.  So the saying goes between us “You read the books, and then tell me about them.”

>_<…Because of this arrangement we have, I consider myself fortunate to have insight on books I’m missing out on reading. Good news though, because of his love for books and study,  Justin has decided to include reviews of his reads.

This book in particular, gives a glimpse into the estranged relationship between creative people and the business world, particularly focusing on the life and work of Jim Henson, creator of the Muppets. It’s an interesting read, and I encourage you to check out his review, and the painting he did to accompany it!

And as always, Enjoy!

Justin Perkins

make-art-make-money-illo

I am a big reader, most of the time I’m reading something. So I decided to share what I read in the form of book reviews. I planning on reviewing mostly art books or things that deal with creativity in some way, but maybe in the future I will go into some of the other kinds of books I read.

Originally published in 2013, Make Art Make Money isn’t your typical book with 10 lessons that will set you on the path to greatness. I doesn’t give you a straight forward answer to the question “How do I make my art make me money?” Instead the book is more like a conversation with a wise grandparent. In this book Stevens uses the life and work of Jim Henson (creator of the Muppets) to illustrate how an artist may maintain balance between making art profitable and staying true to their vision.

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Monday Evening Post

Get to Know Bea

Bea

I don’t know if it’s because I come off gender neutral online, but I have been mistaken for a guy many times. While I love me some mens, I’m not one of them 😛  So, for those who don’t know, this is me, Bea!

I’m a pleasantly plump, though a bit plumper in real life, black girl with freckles and glasses… and yes, I am a bit of a nerd according to my friends, and PROUD OF IT!

My hair is a big bundle of sisterlocks, that on a bad day looks like a lion’s mane, and I try to never leave the house without wearing the two bracelets my sister made for me. They’re like my good luck charms!

I’m am introvert– though I try to be more outgoing, I sometimes I fail >_< tragically, but I’m an optimist.  I pick myself up, learn from my mistakes and try again in hopes of a better outcome.  I’m also stubborn, as several friends have mentioned, and I agree 😀  I know who I am, what I believe, and I’m full opinions, but I don’t let pride get in the way of seeing other points of view. For that reason, my friend also mentioned that I am reasonable, when I’m stubborn. Like every human though, I do have my flaws, and I don’t shy away from admitting them.

Overall, I’m simple girl, and I find joy in simple things. Best things in life are free, kinda person, which in my opinion can be summed up in good company. And that’s me!

This drawing actually came about because I was asked to draw myself in the uniform of the House I would attend if I were in Harry Potter. Because I only saw the first film (simply because my attention span is so short, sitting through 3 hours can be agony for me) I did not know what I was doing… The first draft , I showed my friend Zygona, and was like “Look, it’s me in Harry Potta’s uniform!”  and her response was ” You just made up colors didn’t you..?”

I replied with a very shameful “……yeeeees”

So, the ever resourceful Zygona, pulled up a quiz, so that I could know what house i would belong in based on my personality. I got House Hufflepuff

For those of you who care to read– this is my test result

“You are nice, aren’t you? The kind of nice that takes an active role in civic affairs. The kind of nice that picks up litter off the sidewalk and puts it in the trash. You and your fellow housemates are the sort of reliable, trustworthy people who would spend their own birthdays manning a soup kitchen and joining a protest march, before settling down to a communal meal in which everyone has brought a lovingly-prepared dish.
In short, you’re the best friend anyone could ever hope for, and sometimes—in your quieter moments—that leads you to feel a little let down by other people who don’t meet those same lofty standards. It’s not nice to think poorly of your friends, of course, and you do understand their points of view, but a little more consideration would sometimes be nice. “

So with Zygona’s help, I re-drew my uniform and fixed my colors, and there you have it. Bea, of Hufflepuff! I now must honor Zygona by binge watching all the Harry Potter films.

Anywho, it’s a pleasure sharing this with you! til next time, Enjoy!