Feelin’ Guud!

Hey guys! Bea here!

So my friends were like, “Hey, you haven’t posted to your blog in a while.”

And I was like “Yeah, I  know >_<”

So a lot has happened! And of course I’ll be sharing arts with you guys,  but I guess I should say what’s been up 🙂

My health has been an issue for a long time, especially this past year– so as much as I would have loved to pour my energy into some of the projects I’ve had planned, the struggles I was having have set me back by months. Good news is, I’ve sought help, I’m finally on medication, and as the title suggests, I am FEELIN GUUUD, lol

So what was the issue? Well, I’ve struggled with very severe bronchitis for most of my life. I have been hospitalized for it, and have been housebound for weeks because of it. I’ve lived with this condition for so long though, I had kind of just gotten used to it, that is until a few months ago, after I stressed myself out and became extra sensitive to my triggers. And most recently, a visit to my friends house, who has cats,which I love, but are a trigger of mine, caused me to have a really bad attack while I was driving home. I didn’t have medication at the time, and the attack was so bad that it took me three weeks to recover from it to the point where I could at least walk around again without getting severely winded.

Naturally when you’re struggling to just get air into your lungs, 24 hours a day, it drains you– so, functioning was hard. I kept working on commissions but, that’s about all I could do. Anyway, I got a new doctor, and she informed me that my lungs and my sinuses were so irritated and inflamed that the smallest thing like taking a few breaths of chilled air was enough to set me off. Fortunately she sent me home with several medications designed to treat my condition entirely, and  after being on them for a few weeks, I feel ALIVE!

I never realized how good it feels to be able to simply take a long, deep breath, without having to struggle for it.  To be able to eat food without having to hold my breath first, and just enjoy the flavors, and to be able to sleep soundly and wake up energized instead of tired, among many other things that I had grown accustomed to.

Of course, the medications did come with their side effects. I was moody, and angry, and hungry, and angry, so, lol not fun times considering I found reasons to snap at all of my friends! Thankfully they understood that Bea was just trippin’ off side effects, and thankfully I’m done taking the ones that had Bea trippin’.

Up until that time though, I was drawing, just never got around to posting any of it. So, over the next few days I’ll be showing you some of the stuff I was working on!

Starting with FANGIRL!

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You may have seen this before if you see my Instagram posts , but this image compiles a collection of things that I’ve been interested in, and have influenced me since I was younger, AND there are a total of 17 easter eggs (references to a fandom) to be found.

I showed this concept to my friends and they all digged it super much and said it would be cool if I made a series of illustrations like these, dedicated to different fandoms. After giving it much thought, I figured it’s a cool and fun idea, so why not? One of my goals this year is to have some work in print, and to perhaps get a booth at a Comic-Con to sell my work. Perhaps the FANGIRL series would be a good segway into that.

This illustration is still in it’s roughest form, but since there’s so many references in this one in particular, this entry would be considered FANGIRL: nastalgia, while others would be centered entirely on Comics, Games, anime/Japanese Culture, Film, Literature, ect.

I’d also like to note that every entry into the FANGIRL series, would have a similar formula.  For example, All of them would feature a girl in Cosplay, and will contain at least 10 easter eggs to be found.

Since I want this to use very dynamic series with dynamic posing, and I need to get better at drawing poses in general, to the benefit of the commissions that I’ve taken, I also decided to try and dedicate a bit of time each day, to drawing poses, and or speed paint portraits.

These are the few that I was able to do so far,

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I need a new phone, with a better camera, coming soon, so bare with me, with these >_<;

For this set, I scoured through a few of the comic books I owned, particularly Spiderman, and Venom comics, and drew some of the poses I saw. This was my first take on drawing these poses so of the ones I did, these are the roughest.

Sports:

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All the poses that I do, are going to be done in my sketchbook, and from references. Basically with this set, I collected a bunch of references, and printed them out on one sheet of paper, and proceeded to draw the ones that interested me most from what I collected.  These poses were much harder to draw because clothes kinda get in the way– where as with the comics, most supers are wearing skin tight body suits.

Birds:

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These poses were inspired by one of my favorite games– Journey, by That Game Company.

Unfortunately there were no direct references to draw from with these, so instead, I whipped out my 3D programs, Daz Studio and Poser to pose a model before drawing it. Both are great tools to use if you want to draw difficult poses. Since I’m giving myself a time limit with these sketches- being like an hour a day, posing the models took up quite a bit of that time, so I could only draw two.

I haven’t drawn any poses after these, as of yet because I got called to do extra work, and had to work on some commissions, but I will be getting back to these very soon.

Anyway, sorry for the long delay! I certainly hope you liked this post and what I had to share :). there is more to show, but I’ll save it for a future post since this one is already so long.  So, As always, till next time, Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cowboys, and Westerns

Seems to be the theme of this month- oh and werewolves!

Hey guys! Bea here! Hope you’re ready to see some arts!

Since much of my time is spent doing commission work, I’ve learned that no matter how busy I am, it’s important to take some time to simply draw whatever random thing that comes to mind that I want to do.

Well, that moment came last night when I went out and saw Hateful Eight with Zygona.  I’ve always been a fan of Quintin Tarantino’s work, since Kill Bill–  and became interested in titles like Pulp Fiction too. I mean, what Tarantino is able to do with his movies, visually, has always charged and inspired me in creative ways. I

n his most recent movie, the Hateful Eight, my favorite character, played by Samuel L Jackson is Major Warren.  I loved his design, and his character is so well written that I couldn’t resist drawing him…Only, as a woman o.o.

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There wasn’t any reason to draw him as a woman, other than the fact that I loved his outfit and wish I could cosplay as him every day >_<. I mean his jacket is, omgaah! Love it!

This sketch isn’t done though– I certainly want to fully render it, but I’ll save that for a time when I have more leisure. What’s great though about doing this sketch is that it also helped me to set up for my next set of commissions that are in progress.

 

Gothic Dust

A few months ago, I was contacted by a nice guy who I’ll refer to as Ray, who commissioned me to do 4 character illustrations, plus an ad illustration, and the name of his story is Gothic Dust.

From what I can say about it, it has a western/cowboy style with some rather interesting characters I hope you all get to learn more about as I go through designing each one.

So far, we are in phase 1- thumbnail silhouettes

Poses are important, when designing non-static characters because it tells you a bit more about them through their body language,  and thumbnail silhouettes help me get a feel for that, and the energy each character has, prior to adding all the details.

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Much like the last set of character designs I did, I’ll be saving each phase to show you the steps, so that when I’m done I can animate them.  But unlike my previous character designs, because these will all be complete renderings, there will be more steps to record.

I have a few more concepts I have to start sketches for, so stay tuned!

In the meantime, I hope you liked this post, and as always, Enjoy!

 

 

 

Busy Bea

Hey Guys! Bea here! Hope all is well on your end 🙂

As the title suggests, I am a very very busy Bea, considering I have quite the list of commissions that I’m working through at the moment, on top of my regular work. While it may be a while before some of these illustrations are complete since I’m still in the draft phase,  I’m glad to say that I’ve been given the go-ahead to share the process work 🙂

Also, at least one of the photos shared today is coming directly from my Instagram account, which I’ve recently joined at https://www.instagram.com/jackson.bea/  . I’ve been making a habit of posting works in progress there before anywhere else, so if you care to see what I’m up to in my downtime,  feel free to follow 😀

First up, the second draft of a book cover, featuring a female werewolf

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For the most part, I’m still roughing this one out– though the colors are pretty solid as it is since it’s supposed to be very muted, with highlights of gold. Because this book will be the first in a series, I believe, it was decided that we’d take a more straightforward approach with the design, by treating it like an introduction to her character. The idea was to communicate who she is, what she looks like, and to tell a little bit about her–specifically the fact that she’s a werewolf/huntress.

Since the eyes are the windows to the soul, I figured that’s the best place to start. Therefore, what you see here is as the full moon approaches, and she’s on the brink of turning,  her eyes glow a golden color, giving insight to the wolf in her, and foreshadowing her becoming the wolf, as seen in the wolf eyes peering through the darker part of the sky.

I’m not sure on her pose just yet, and there’s a lot of room for improvements, so I’ll be doing quite a bit of experimenting with this one until I’m satisfied with the concept before I begin to work towards a final piece. So far tho, it’s a good start!

The second image is an update from an earlier work in progress that ended up on hold due to the demand of the holidays-

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This one is not that far off from being done. In fact, it’s only about two days left of work in it.  The concept behind it, is she’s like a superhero/ empowered woman. To help me get an idea of what he was looking for, the client posed himself,  and had his own professional photography done, similar to this, which I drew my color pallet from. Mostly, it’s the face and the flames that need work, and her body needs to be rendered smoother all around, before it will be complete!

Over the next week, I’ll likely have more works to share, since there are other projects that I’ve been committed to, outside of my regular work, so, that’s something to look forward too 😀

Well that’s all for today! I’m tired, need sleep x_x. In the meantime,  I hope you liked this post, and what I had to share, and as always, till next time,  Enjoy!

 

 

 

Evolution of a Concept

Sometimes it’s good to push an idea a bit further, beyond the point you would usually stop– just to see if you can make it a little bit better.

Here’s a simple follow up, of the process to making my 2016 self-portrait: Dreams.

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I started this sketch back in November, with a simple idea in mind- to draw myself with a vibrant bouquet made up of art supplies, and my sketchbook. At the time, I was very confident  that I had everything figured out, and this was the final draft. I even took the time to do a clean pencil line-art in my sketchbook for inking.

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But because I simply wasn’t ready to finish it at the time, I stepped away from it, didn’t look at it or touch it, until New Year’s Eve.  After giving it some thought, It needed a little bit more…

Sometimes you have to take a step back, to see the better picture

It’s easy to run the risk of being too intimate with your own work. You could become so obsessed with the details, that you lose sight of what the bigger picture is all about.

In my experience during figure study classes,  the instructors always encouraged their students to step back, or away from their canvases every once and a while, because when working in such a large format, the artist is only able to focus on whats in their direct line of sight. When the artist fails to do this, very often when they look at the final piece, they find various problems.  For example, the eyes may not line up, the face may be out of proportion, different parts of the body may be disproportionate, or out of scale– All, which could easily be fixed by simply looking at the work as a whole instead of focusing on the finer details.

This isn’t a concept that’s exclusive to working in large formats either. The same can be said by simply stepping away from your work for a period of time, so that when you come back to it, you have fresh ideas on how to make it better, and it’s a trick used by writers, musicians and artists of all kinds.

So, when it came to working on Dreams, I certainly saw room for improvement.

ProcessOfMar2

Laziness is not a Virtue: The importance of having your very own support group

ProcessOfMar3

Bea: im really debating if I should color this
Zygona:  i think you should
Bea: I know I want it to have like, a watercolor look…
Zygona: that would be cool
Bea: i dunno if I just find line-art more appealing or if I’m just being lazy lol
Zygona: well, save the line and try coloring it, and if you still like the line better then you can say you do like the line better and its not laziness
Bea:  aka no being lazy lol

forever

Bea: lol I’m glad you made me not be lazy and actually color it
Zygona: indeed. i like it colored

Zygona– Always the voice of reason in my every-day life >_<. Justin and my friend D’andre are also two individuals who have a lot of say in my work, and their input has been essential to my growth. After-all, how do you know where to improve if you don’t have anyone there that you trust to critique you?  Thanks guys ^_~.

Conclusion

One thing that I’m happy about, after finishing this piece, is being able to see my growth in comparison to my first Constellations/Dreams illustration from last year, that featured Estelle, a character I created for the sake of marking my own progress as an artist.

As far as this illustration is concerned, I’ve always wanted to work with more vibrant colors, and play with collage like concepts, especially since both have always been very difficult for me to do. But I took the time to reflect on what I’ve learned this year, allowed myself to exercise new ideas and try new things, and challenged myself to work outside my own comfort zones with the encouragement of my friends, and it lead to a piece that I am very proud of. Going into 2016, I intend to do much of the same, with the hope that by the New Year of 2017, I’ll have another illustration to share, that not only marks my progress for the year, and my growth as an artist, but sets a new standard for the years that follow.

And with that, I leave you with a little animation showing my process to the final piece 🙂

 

 

MarryAnimate

Hope you liked this post, and as always, till next time, Enjoy!

2016: From Challenge to Change

Hey Guys, Bea here! And a Happy New Year to you all!

This post will be dedicated mostly to my plans for 2016 and how I’ll be running my blog going forward, but before that, I’d just like to take a a brief moment to reflect on the past year, and how it’s changed me, as an artist 🙂

Prior to January 1st 2015, I was really struggling as an artist, just trying to find the right inspiration to get off the ground. Most of my time was spent working my day jobs, greatly dividing my attention. So, my art suffered, simply because I couldn’t find the time to invest in my ideas and the betterment of my skills.

But something clicked on that day, Jan 1st 2015, and I decided I’d stop making excuses for myself and just go for it. And to keep me motivated, I started this blog to not only share my work with the world and those who care to see it, but to document my process. From the start, I knew that this was going to be a challenge, because of how easy it is to start something and not finish it, and how tempting it is to give up when things get hard, and believe me, I had my moments lol. But looking back on that day, and at how much I accomplished by the end of 2015, by simply simply sticking with it, I would have never guessed that it would take me so far, as an artist, and as a person, or that it would bring me one step closer to my dreams…

That said, I have arts to share!

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Despite all the hardships 2015 brought, it did not come without its rewards, and turned out to be a year of many firsts for me!

  • I went from producing maybe 3-5 pieces of art per year, to the over 50+ Illustrations and Sketches that make up my portfolio, as of today.
  • From those pieces, I created my first portfolio book, which also turns out to be my first full portfolio of new and original work since I left college over 5 years ago.
  •  I flew out to San Diego and experienced SDCC for the first time, and had the opportunity to sit down with major companies, like Blizzard, and Nickelodeon, among others, and received my first set of portfolio reviews, outside of school.
  • And, as of Nov 22nd, I decided to stop working my day job, and be a full-time artist– which is the news I’ve been waiting for the right time to share.

So, November 23, 2015 was the day I began working as a full-time artist. Ironically, this did not happen by me quitting. Instead, the company I was working for simply decided to close the division I was working in, and though they offered me a position working elsewhere, I figured instead that I would take this opportunity to give my dreams a try instead.

I had considered leaving on my own many a times, but this was a company that I had been with for almost 8 years. I knew the work, I did it well, I had been promoted, and I didn’t want to leave, for fear that if I did, I’d have to start back at square one… so I stayed. But when they told me they were closing out, It was like a door had opened just as that one was closing, urging me to…take the next step. To go for it, even harder.

Since then, I’ve had a lot of time to think about how I’m going to spend the extra time I have– and how this is all going to work out. To be honest, it’s a bit scary to think about. But like many of my friends, and people who I’ve met who reached the same fork in the road and made the same choice, I’m confident that if I play my cards right, and put in the work,  I’ll experience success like they have.

This brings me to the main topic of this post– My blog and my plans for 2016.

Posting Schedule:

After giving it much thought, I’ve decided to just scrap the Monday Evening Posts entirely, and for good reason. As much as I like the idea of having a regiment, I’ve found that in trying to stick with it, I’m more concerned with showing work for the sake of keeping time, than taking time to put more quality into my work, and the posts themselves. Instead, I think it’s best I post casually, when I have something to share, especially since it allows me to put more soul into my work, and my writing.

Goals and Expectations:

If I may, I’d like you take a moment to talk about the art shared in this post. I started this illustration back when I decided to let my job go, in November, and it began with me drawing myself in a wedding dress, holding my sketchbook, and art supplies as part of my bouquet. When my friends asked what it meant,  I simply told them, I love art, that I’m married to it,  and committed to my dream of being a “successful” full-time artist, so that someday, I will be able to tackle the ideas, stories and concepts that I’ve been stockpiling for years, to share them and be recognized in the big world of art.

Of course, like the girl in the constellations, Estelle reminds me that my dreams are like stars- some farther off, but all are within sight, and some even branch off into others. Though touching the stars of your dreams may seem impossible at times, the goal is to aim high anyways, and see where it takes you. I’ve learned that chances are, you just might hit your mark 🙂

The mark for this year? I want to focus on creating art that is driven more by narrative. Most of 2015, my work consisted of character designs.  Instead, I want to strengthen my ability to tell a story, and Illustrate. In addition, to keep my focus where it needs to be, I will be less concerned about how polished these illustrations are– and more about how well I communicate my ideas, so you can expect that most of my personal works will be either sketches, rough concepts or speed paintings. I’ll also be experimenting with various different mediums, like watercolor, pen and Ink.

So that’s what the art shared today is all about. Experimenting with different art mediums, my sketchbook spilling it’s pages of rough concepts, my ideas finding new life, and my dreams my goals– which embody and all the things I hope to share with you this year!

This post has gone on long enough though!  Thank you for reading, I really hope you all had an awesome New Year celebration,  and here’s to 2016! *Cheers*

As always, till next time, Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love & Starbucks

Hey guys! Bea here!

Hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season– and if not, as I know this time of year can be tough for many, may it turn around for you, that you find joy in it, to make up for whatever bad there may have been :).

So, Lets talk the holidays, coffee and sketches!

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There’s a reason for the intro– Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the holiday season…eeeeeeeeeever since the time I worked in retail. Why? Well, in my experience, it’s the one time of year when people can be their most materialistic , and when people can act the most ugly to others, while trying to do good by their families.

It’s a stressful time of year for some people, and often, stress can bring out the worst in a person, leading them to take their frustrations out on the people who are putting in, or ringing up their purchases, serving their food, or coffee, and even their fellow shoppers who simply want to give to their families too.

I’ve worked many holiday seasons,  and despite my efforts to make sure the customer experience is a good one, I know what it feels like to be verbally battered, threatened, called out my name, or flat out offended by people who are upset if they can’t get what they want, or if things aren’t going their way.

So to those who know this experience, my heart goes out to you- and for those who don’t, please be mindful and considerate of those you meet. It’s the holidays! Whether you celebrate or not, lets enjoy the season for it’s intended purpose– which is to bring people together, in peace, and joy, even if it’s just for a little while lol.

Phew! Now that, that is off my chest, I’m glad to share this sketch with you, while also announcing how much I loooove Starbucks. My friends know this– and understand that I am so passionate about my favorite lattes and frapps, that I have invested time and money into learning how to duplicate them at home. I’m also the type of person to go out of my way, to make frequent visits to Starbucks, just to try a specialty drink a day, whenever they have them. It’s that serious >_<;

!!!!!!STARBUCKS FO LYFE!!!!!!

So, while I was sitting in Starbucks recently with Justin, enjoying my drank, I decided to draw the lovely twin tailed Siren.

To tell you a bit about who she is, in case you’re interested, Here is a quote from Starbucks.com-

“In a search for a way to capture the seafaring history of coffee and Seattle’s strong seaport roots, there was a lot of poring over old marine books going on. Suddenly, there she was: a 16th century Norse woodcut of a twin-tailed mermaid, or Siren. There was something about her – a seductive mystery mixed with a nautical theme that was exactly what the founders were looking for. A logo was designed around her, and our long relationship with the Siren began.” Steve M., senior writer

Of course, there are theories that refute this claim, and even suggest that the twin tailed mermaid is a creature of a malicious, and sexual nature. If it’s true, I don’t mind one bit! I’ve been a fan of mermaids ever since Disney introduced them to me, but as I got older, and found out more about them, I was seduced by the idea of their true nature– of being beautiful, but evil creatures.

This is a sketch of course, so, not finished, but I have some ideas on how to go about it, and it starts with these-

supplies

SUPPLIES!

I wasn’t expecting much of anything for Christmas this year. In fact, I usually don’t– but this year especially. I’ve had to take on a lot of responsibilities this year, and the financial burdens that come with them, while going through changes, and dealing with health issues, so I told my friends that I wont be shopping this year, because I had obligations to meet, which yay, I met them!  So unless it was something I could cook or make, I wasn’t going to be exchanging gifts. They know what’s been going on with me, and they all really surprised me.

Please be aware, I’m the easiest person to shop for. You can buy me a cup of coffee at Starbucks or give me a candy bar, and I will be as happy as can be, because honestly it’s the thought that counts. But among the many things my friends got for me– I received a set of Windsor Watercolor Markers, and a bigger set of brush tip Watercolor Markers imported from Japan, which I can tell you, neither one is cheap, a gift card for more art supplies, and Starbucks pen, which I will be rocking’ faithfully. All in all, my friends didn’t have to go all out, but they did. I’m so grateful, and I can’t wait to put these gifts into use.

So, I will be combining my love of coffee with my love of art– by finishing this sketch, among others, in watercolor, using the supplies that were gifted to me. I’m not used to them though, so it will require practice.

I’ve been having a ton of fun drawing this though, I like how it’s looking, and decided that once it’s done, I’ll have it printed on the back of a single custom made hoodie for myself, to show the world that I’m all about that coffee!

Well everyone, I hope you liked this post– more arts coming soon, and till next time, Enjoy! And Happy Holidays!

 

 

 

 

 

Ice and Snow

If only he knew, that a frozen heart is incapable of love…

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Hey guys, Bea here! And I come bearing arts to share! And this one is all about love and winter 😛

To tell you a bit about the characters, the lovely lady is Purest Ice and her handsome companion is Blackest Snow

To her, nothing is more beautiful than a world frozen in snow and ice. If only her reign could last forever, she’d make the whole world her very own winter wonderland. He, on the other hand is enchanted by the beauty of winter, and gave his heart, unaware that in doing so, it would turn cold.

This illustration, like many I’ve done, was made for Gaiaonline.com for the December Monthly Collectible for 2015, to compliment the collection of items I created :).

Like many of the works I have sitting aside right now, I was eager to share this one, but time has not been on my side. Holiday Hustle, I call it.  For some reason, without fail, even though I’m not working in retail, October through to New Years is the busiest time for me, which makes it really difficult to find time to write, especially when I’m sleep deprived lol.

Aside from that, but also in addition to it, I’ve gone through a really big change in my life that I’ve been waiting for the right moment to sit down and share– and it is a change that will impact on how I run my blog going forward. For example, there are a quite a few changes I wish to make, like to my posting times, subject matter and content, and the structure in which I write. And there are a few things I wish to implement, like challenges and games.

Overall though,  I’ve been at this blog for a full year so far. I’ve experimented, tried different things, found out what works for me, and what doesn’t, and my goal for 2016 is to create a space here that is a bit closer to my vision of what I want my blog to be. Basically a place where I can share my art, and my growth, as I challenge myself in ways that work with my schedule and not against it, so I can be consistent. There’s more to it than that of course, but for now I’m just keeping it simple and sweet 😀 K.I.S.S ya’ll! KISS

Because of the Holiday Hustle, I’ve decided to abandon the Monday Evening Posts for the time being until I can sit down and really sort everything out. I’ll still try to post what I’m up to on a weekly basis with art, or works in progress, but I wont be sweating it lol. In the meantime, for all those who’ve shared your support, or even just read through to this point, thanks 😀  It means a lot to me!

As always, more arts coming soon, Happy Holidays everyone! Till next time, Enjoy!