Wednesday, January 26, 2011

When At A Lost For What To Do- Make A Caricature

David Letterman
 Every now and then, when I'm at a lost for what to do next I turn to caricature. Why? Because it's fun and it keeps me in paint. The only thing is that I always feel a little insecure when it comes to how well a likeness I got. The responses have been mostly positive though not 100%. Initially I did these to build up a portfolio after I got a few illustration assignments to do caricature. Now its one of the things I do as a bridge to other work, something to jump start creativity.



Bill O'Rielly

Rosie O'Donnell

President Obama

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Stuff I'll Finish Someday

Its a big enough challenge to paint or draw everyday, but the goal is actually to get some finished work done. The amount of finished works and creative projects I've been able to bring to completion are to few. I have a long list of works and ideas I would love to get back to as well as some works I would like another shot at. I have not let them go, It will take a little planing but I will get back to them.

This painting and the one above left is
of a coworker. While I think that these
came out okay, I don't feel I got to say what
I wanted about him. I would like to return to
this someday.

The work on the left was intended as
an homage to two of my favorite fantasy
artist, Frank Frazetta and John Buscema.
Both of whom have passed away. I fully
intend to get back to it as I do the one on the right. That one was part of a video I did on
Edgar Allen Poe's short story The Red Death.
I only completed the first half of the video and
posted it on YouTube,

This also was part of that Red Death video.

This one is a favorite that I really was having a great time
working on. I had made a study of this in gouache as well,
this is the oil version unfinished. I know that I want to devote
time to this, but I want that time to be uninterrupted so I wait
for when i can take some time off from work to spend time on this.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Digital Sketching with Sketchbook Pro and Corel Painter Essentials

I spent the weekend on my computer sketching using the various programs I’ve collected. They are very convenient to use especially since I have an active household. The kids make it hard sometimes to claim the space I need for the more traditional art materials, (though I much prefer to use them). All I need is my computer and a tablet, (I have a Bamboo tablet and a Cintiq),and I’m good to go. The two programs I used this weekend are some of the best and inexpensive ones I have. I used Auto Desks Sketchbook Pro for the Dinosaur and the Pirate video that I include in this post and Corel Painter Essentials 3 for the portrait. Its been a little while since I’ve used Sketchbook Pro so it seemed I had to try and find the tools I knew were there as I worked on these. Corel Painter Essentials I used only about four times in the two years I had the program so that a little difficult. These programs are fun to use and help keep me busy creatively.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Whole Day To Draw

Got to spend the day at my drawing table. A rare occurrence so I tried to make the best of it and draw for as long as I could. I started at about 8 A.M. and finished at about 4 P.M.. A good long time to be sure, but I could do more and probably will continue into the night. Its rare when I get a day like this, the hard part is as much as I enjoyed the day it always leaves me feeling like I need to do so much more to get better at drawing.
I could use another day but next time I’ll plan it instead of just letting the weather decide whether I take the day off from work.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Early Morning Drawing Session

Another version of the drawing I
posted last time. This time I tried
to simplify the  image and use
different marks.

So far I’ve been pretty consistent with getting up early to start my day drawing or painting.  I’ve been working in pen and ink because its easy to get started and I have been unsatisfied with my first attempts at drawing in this medium.
What I’ve been doing is making a pencil drawing and attaching it to a light box, then I would place a blank sheet of paper over that and begin inking. This way if I am unsatisfied I can always produce another version . I also was trying to consider what types of marks I would use to build my image.
I took the time to look to the pen and ink artist of the past. I looked through a book I had purchased in college, Pen Drawing and Pen Draughtsmen by Joseph Pennell. There are many wonderful drawings in that book and there is one in particular that I remembered and turned to, a drawing by Antonio Farbes of a man eating out of a pot, (probably beans). I also looked at Franklin Booth and Harrison Cady, a lot of old guys. One of my biggest influences I found in the pages of the old Warren Magazines, an artist who was known as Auraleon. I always liked his style, heavy on the darks and full of character and the marks he used made the drawings lively. Pretty much what I'm trying to go for is just that, a simpler image, strong lighting and interesting marks that would give the drawing some life and character.

Self portrait

Here is the pencil vrsion of this
self portrait. I used this to put on
a light box and made the final draw-
ing on a clean sheet of paper I
laced over it.

Pencil study for the drawing bellow.

I enjoyed playing with the different marks
I was able to use to build this image. This type
of study helps me to develop an arsenal of
choices I can use in future pen and ink drawings.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Pen and Ink Exercise

This is the pencil drawing that I
based the ink drawing on.

For a few days now I’ve managed to get myself up early, (4 A.M.), to get some work done before I wake the kids to get them ready for school and myself ready to travel to work. I decided to start these mornings up with pen and ink exercises. Since I didn’t have anything else to work on I figured these exercises would lead to an idea.
What it has lead to was the realization that I’m out of practice with the medium so I took up this exercise of making several versions of the same drawing. These are not all the drawings, only the more successful ones. Still not satisfied with the work but the exercise has got me looking forward to the next morning to try again.

Version 1

Version 2

Version 3

Monday, January 10, 2011

A New Year A New Plan

For now I continue to work on the run. Manage to keep my sketchbook going. The great thing is with the new year I have time to regroup, the vacation time starts over again and I can set aside time to paint. I look forward to the warm weather so I can paint outdoors again, but I have the itch to paint now. I have to come up with a better way of planning my time. I think I will set up the night before what I'm going to work on in the morning. There was a time when I got up at 4 A.M. to get some painting done. I got to get back to that In the new year. I will post my progress, in the meantime here a some sketchbook pages from life an imagination.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Painting my Kids

Another year has passed, (heck, another decade), I have so many ways to mark the time. The most important to me right now are my son’s. They have been the subjects of portraits, drawings, quick sketches and illustrations.
Eleven years have passed in the life of my first son and nine for the younger. To few paintings and drawings record that time, but I am glad for each one. I remember painting each work, I remember that time in their life. Each year of their lives were special and I miss them, but I also like who they are today and look forward to who they will be in the future.

Joshua was ten when I did this portrait of him.
I bought him the book that he holds in his hand the
night before. I gave him the book when I came home
from work and he read it all before dinner. Impressed, I
decided to paint him with the book.

Every morning my youngest son Jason and I
would go outside to wait for his bus to pick
him up for school.  We would always leave a little
early so that we can have some extra time together
before I leave for work. This painting was done from
a photo I took with my cell phone one of those mornings.
This is a drawing my son Jason did
depicting him and I going for a walk.

When Joshua began to get into dinosaurs
I wrote and illustrated this story for him.
Althouh the child in the story was not a
direct portrait of Joshua, I had him in mind
when I drew the character.