Tuesday, December 09, 2008


"I had a similar incident at the Knott's Berry Farm goldfish pond with a fancy carp..."

Saturday, November 29, 2008

IF: The reason we were never conquered by the balloon people from space...

"And after we wipe out the Needle People from the planet Cacti we will take our reign of terror to Earth!"

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

IF:Hypochondriac sharks always wanting second opinions

"While I appreciate the fact you want a second opinion there are two big reasons why I know you don't have a broken bone in your leg..."

Much like the dental instructor our medical teacher often doesn't get my humor...or lack thereof...so I feel obligated to tell her sharks don't have bones but rather cartlidge...and no legs...

Everyone have a great Thanksgiving!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

If: The Grim (Re'Pair)...He's French...Wa Ha Ha...

Okay...the story...Today was inservice day which usually results in spectacular meetings...for hours on end...for some reason during these meetings I tend to draw a lot of pictures involving death...so low and behold when I checked the IF topic it was 'repair'...and the image immediately popped into my head. So I sketched it out and along came the dental teacher...and the following is the mesmerizing conversation that occurred.

DT..."Who is that"
Me in my best French voice..."It is the Grim Repair...(insert bad stereotypical French laugh)"
DT..."I don't get it."
Me..."Well you know the French talk funny so instead of saying Reaper it would sound like repair...and then they laugh bad."
DT..."But you talk funny and you aren't from France...you're from West Virginia...and why is he dressed like that."
Me..."Because he is the French Grim Reaper."
DT...'Oh, I get it now...but who is the guy on the ground and why is he laying there like that?"
Me..."It is a French person...and he is dead...because that is what the Grim Repair does..."
DT..."But why is the dead person dressed like that?"
Me..."Because he is a mime...""
DT..."But why is he a mime?"
Me..."Because everyone that lives in France is a mime...that is how their society is."
DT..."Oh...do you think other people of your kind will get it?"
Me..."Yes, I think they will...because people of my kind are observant and usually a little bit tilted...not that you aren't tilted and all but well...you teach people how to brush their teeth..."

Two hours later at another meeting the Dental Instructor was sitting beside of me and an English teacher.
DT..."See if he gets it."
I show the picture and ask him if he gets it.
English Teacher in his best French voice..."Why it is the Grim Repair...(insert bad French laugh)...
DT..."Whatever"...rolls eyes.
Me..."Oh, we're not done...Ken, why is this guy on the ground and dressed like he is?"
ET..."Because the Grim Repair expires folks...and the guy on the ground is French...which makes him a mime...because everyone in France is a mime...that is their whole population."
At this point the dental teacher shakes her head and tells us whatever...and I really French it up and add a poodle...because all French people...who are mimes of course...own dogs...and those dogs are poodles...because that is the only type of dog there is in France...and because the mime was coming back from market at the time of his expiration he had the only things that French people buy because that is all they eat...French bread and a bottle of wine...and everyone lives near the Eiffel Tower, so I threw that in...(although I couldn't talk the Dental teacher into leaving the meeting to get me a reference picture so I just had to wing it...)


Saturday, October 18, 2008

IF:The REAL reason the topic was sent late...

"Egad!!! I threw my back out again at the all night midget toss and brussel sprout buffet...It'll take me hours to drag myself to the computer to send out the topic..."

Yeah, we've got people watching you Penelope...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

IF:No Strings Attached?

So she says to me...'Mike, without a long term commitment I won't even give you a kiss'..So I says to her 'Sure thing toots, til death do us part'...and I'm laughing to myself and thinking,'Boy I sure got over on her...I'm a housefly, how long of a commitment could it be...'

Sunday, October 05, 2008

IF: Sugary

"Well, look at the bright side...If we have to turn to cannibalism no one is going to complain about a disgusting taste..."

Friday, September 26, 2008

IF: Packed for the Trip

It had to be a lie that she had just a few 'small' dresses that needed packed in his trunk...not with hips like that...

Friday, September 05, 2008

Friday, August 29, 2008

Saturday, August 09, 2008

IF: Nothing to use to make a sail...

After months of using a spoon to fashion the only tree on the island into a raft, a fatal flaw appeared in the escape plan...highlighting yet another reason to never get stranded with a nudist colony...

On a related note...after the somewhat disappointing IF post with the Squidward tentacles going crazy I retackled the octopus theme...thanks for inspiration for the Pick Pocket Octopus from Friday Frog's work, Chris Leavens, and again Detlef for originally making me want to try an octopus...Prisma color on illustration board...

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

IF: Canned

"Rumor has it someone in the marketing department is going to get canned tomorrow...say Bill, don't you work in the marketing department?"

Monday, July 21, 2008

6 Fang Marks & a Tetanus Shot

Been on summer break and doing a lot of traveling...sadly this has kept me away from Illustration Friday and getting to view all of the people's work I enjoy. Hopefully I'll be back in full swing within a couple of weeks.

This is a pic I just finished a couple of days ago from a book I read call 6 Fang Marks and a Tetanus Shot. It is a bit of a gift just because there was such strong images in the book and at the time I thought I needed another project as I had finished up several smaller ones....then it took me 5 months to actually get around to it. The gentleman that wrote it is a jack of all trades and I'm not sure how he keeps pace with a family, writing (on multiple fronts it now appears), as well as being the captain of his own fleet of commercial airliners. There is a lot that goes on in the book and it is pretty quick paced. To me it was a bit maddening at times(but in a good way) because it was if you had stolen someone's journal of someone you actually know...and it has the definite feel of 'life' and the true absurdity and choices that sometimes comes with it. If you haven't had a chance to read it you can snag it Amazon.com!

Friday, May 23, 2008

IF: Ahh...Why Worry...Kids Will Be Kids...

You'll probably have to click it to read it...and then get mad at me for wasting your time...

Friday, May 16, 2008

IF: Wide Gap in Reality: The Squidward Principle

I will attempt to deal with what I call the Squidward Principle, of which I believe most of us have been through at one point in our life...however it seems to be much more prevalent today and to last longer periods...some never getting out of it.

Squidward...great artist, 1st Chair Clarinet player, above all lifeforms on the planet...But the reality is much different and I will focus on one particular area that seems to be at the forefront. The Clarinet. Squidward plays it and does so horribly...and really doesn't see how bad he is...To him, the rest of the world just hasn't tuned their ears to his greatness...So when you see him practicing you have to understand that he really isn't practicing at all! He THINKS he has already arrived and needs no practice...He is playing for the benefit of the world and for himself to rejoice in his melodious sonnets...so he makes the same mistakes over and over...and is a cashier at a fast food restaurant. (NOT that there's anything wrong with that.)

Note that Squidward isn't really playing this instrument as a hobby. We can all have 'hobbies' with varying degree of capability and do it just for enjoyment's sake...but he has dreams of making a full-fledged living (and being an aristocrat it is indeed a high standard of living to uphold) playing the clarinet. If Sir Squidward might take the time to not only listen to critiques but also to self-analyze, who knows where his potential might lie...or perhaps he stinks at the clarinet because he just doesn't have the fingers for it...

So how does that relate to the Squidward Principle. Many times I have seen artists refuse constructive criticism that would help them grow as an artist and they limit their own progress because they are sure they have already arrived. When they do things it is not with the focused intent of challenging themselves, working on areas of weakness and hoping to get better, but they are already the best and the rest of the world needs glasses. Criticism results in an emotional torrent of one sort or the other. Or perhaps there isn't a true understanding of how the 'system' works and they think the world will instantly conform to them. If they want to sit at the table watching Oprah, eating Ho-Ho's, and do medical illustration using poorly rendered stick figures then someone will HAVE to hire them because they want to be hired.

Real World Story #1. (One of my favorites on myself I must say). In college during my freshman year a teacher gave me a grade I didn't feel I deserved...unleash the hounds!!! While I didn't go to her and raise all kinds of chaos as some did (there were students that would throw verbal tantrums, sobbing at times, people running out of the room throwing things, curling up in the fetal position in the corner, quitting the college, etc) I privately stewed but told myself I was going to adhere and listen and see what happened. 2nd year in college as I got better I looked back on my freshman work and during mixed critiques with freshman when tempers flared I would brake out a piece of pooh work (and not the Disney character variety) and say, "Yeah, I used to defend this too." I'm always thankful for the teachers that stopped me in my tracks and said "LOOK at what you are doing and ANALYZE the reality of your work". I'm equally thankful for the teachers that let me know the difference between a hobby, a career, and how to play up to strengths while working on areas I stunk at...as well as avoiding areas I had no shot at being able to do. To think I wanted to fly commercial aircraft with no sense of physics, not able to do exceptionally deep math, topped off by the world's worst fear of flying. Thank my 1st year graphic design teacher for not having a 747 parked in your roof right about now...

Real World Story #2. (Probably told elsewhere on this site). In a class we were required to submit design projects of our own devising every two weeks. One student never liked their grade and went so far as to have their parents lobbying for their grade to be changed. It was of utmost importance that they maintained a 4.0...apparently it was of lesser importance to have a good portfolio...teachers would often relent and just give the grade because it wasn't worth the hassle. Guess what the person is doing now...Cashier...and can't understand why they can't get a job in the field for which they have not one, but TWO degrees. And the parents? Well the student made a 4.0, it doesn't make any sense to them either.

The artists that I have seen grow and be successful are the ones that broke out of the Squidward Principle early. Sure, as artists sometimes it stings a little to get critiqued. But it usually takes about two seconds of seeing some of my favorite artists to realize I myself have a lot of room to grow. Compliments are great, but an open valid discussion of both strengths AND weaknesses is priceless and vital.

Friday, May 09, 2008

IF: Eelectricity

Chet suddenly realized the usual "There just isn't any spark" breakup routine wasn't going to work with this one...

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Godzilla Prep Part 1

I believe very much in the creative process. It is great sometimes to sit down and doodle and just throw something down...but if the inkling of an idea is there that initial idea or drawing can be refined and much improved upon. And in real life it helps to get things right for the client as well as to make changes from certain points...as well as avoiding costly mistakes. So even 'fun relaxing drawing/painting/modeling' is often a spring board to a great project that can be refined.

As mentioned previously, I had decided to do a Godzilla pic because my son enjoys him so much adn I do pics for their school every year. At the bowling alley between frames (I have a paltry 133 average and shoot anywhere from a 205 to an 90 depending on what crazy back or gym soreness issues I am dealing with the night of...in case you were wondering just how bad I sucked...)I was doodling on the back of a flyer with an intitial pic I had in my head. I had originally wanted to do a painting in Photoshop since it had been a while since I had done that technique. I still have it pictured in my mind...but after seeing Chris Leavens turtle I decided to go Vector. Originally I wanted to have Godzilla fighting Ghidora...and if you don't know who that is...well I probably don't blame you. I did several small sketches trying to figure the layout out.

From these sketches I tried to do a bigger rough and get a feel for what the characters were going to look like. I had reference pics but wanted to update the looks of the monsters. What fun is it to just copy a picture someone else has already done verbatim?

After sketching this out I started looking through some reference pics and saw a still from the original Godzilla where he had a train hanging out of his mouth. At that point I decided to hearken back to the original less cheese filled story lines.

So I decided on adding in more of original feel with Zeros and a train being pulled apart. Since this was still a rough I tried to balance out being detailed enough to know what was going on but also to realize I had to fix some things in the next step...particularly the muzzle. The original Godzilla and many designs there after tended to blend facial characteristics of dinosaurs with canine or feline features. If you look at a lot of Eastern dragon drawings they have such notable characteristics so it seems to make sense that this 'dragon' would also retain that. I however wanted to push more into the traditional dinosaur look. As stated in an earlier post, it isn't always easy to walk the balance of taking a well-known design and changing it enough to be different but no so much that it alienates the fan base...the American Godzilla was a neat design but was too far off and caused a lot of waves.

After I had decided the rough was okay I had to decide if I wanted to redraw the items or do a quicker approach. Being time is short at this point of the year I went for the quick. I placed a large piece of tracing paper over the fairly decent rough and made refinements as needed. At this point I began questioning if I wanted to just do a graphite rendering and not mess with the vector side of things...I think nothing beats a great graphite drawing and this started to have a nice feel to it...But it had been so long since I had created a more finished vector piece I decided to stick with it...but a graphite rendering will be done someday...maybe...if I get the 30,000 other things done...

Once the rendering was done I collected reference pictures for both the train and planes. It took a lot of searching to get a plane at the right angle (since I didn't have a model laying around) and a student brought in a train that I could modify while doing the drawing. One thing I am painfully slow at is anything mechanical. It takes me forever to get the detailing correct and is much less forgiving if an angle is off or a line is wrong. Because I was going to be doing this in the vector program I took pictures at the correct angle and planned on just using them with not doing too much in the way of pencil work.

I'm not a big fan of tracing things and mostly refuse to do it...but on occasion you have to do what you have to do. What does bother me if it is a regular practice because it really hurts drawing skills...and if you have little to no drawing skills tracing everything won't make you a better artist...if you're not careful all you will be is a hack...and I see people 'progress' from tracing reference photos to eventually downright stealing other people's art work with little to no changes and claiming it as their own...and we all know how we feel about that...

MEME: Teen Me...everything you didn't need to know about me but were afraid to ask...

After my daily visit to Drawn.ca I ran across a great stress breaker (and do I need one every chance I can get lately) from Dave at livejournal where you are supposed to draw your teen self or if you are a teen the future you...Kind of like Rugrats All Grown Up...or if you remember the dreaded Mork and Mindy days when Jonathan Winters hatched as an old man and the Orkians aged in reverse...

So here it is with all the vital self-deprecation I could muster:
1990 5 Feet 10 inches 135 Pounds 17 Years Old
1. The Spur Hair: While playing Jaws (at the age of 5 not 17) I fell down a flight of concrete stairs backwards...the resulting stitches give me a bit of an Alfalfa effect at times...
2. The Kind-of-Mullet: I deny I had one but there is one picture...I had my hair cutter tell me it was okay because I had a long neck...which resulted in great nicknames by my friends such as Snake Man or Giraffe Boy...but at least I still don't have it like some of them...and I never got it permed like some others I know...
3. The Glove: A pair was always kept handy because of....
4. The Possum Postal Service: You and three friends would find road kill...preferably possums...and deliver them at night to your friend's mailbox...and they had to be your legit friends so there wasn't any real trouble...it wasn't mean like mailbox baseball...you always knew who the driver was the next day by the mark left by the possum that was flapping against the side of your vehicle.
5. The Neon Orange Florida Gators Shirt: Apparently I was ahead of the curve with all the championships they have won recently...maybe they should play someone other than THE Ohio State that might actually give them a game...
6. The Reason I Didn't Wear Shorts Back Then: Chicken legs...
7. The Notebook: Always handy to draw with...there were several hundred drawings done of teachers and the like...of course I always did my work and graduated with a 3.0 GPA...hampered by Algebra II...new notebooks had to be guarded very carefully as we would draw quick bad pictures on every page of anyone's notebook that was foolish enough to be left unguarded.
8. Converse: The shoe of choice...until British Knights came out...Nike wasn't in the picture so much at the time.

2008 5 feet 11 3/4 inches 175 Pounds 35 Years Old
9. The Hair: I still have the occasional Alfalfa...but at least, unlike my brothers or many other people in my age group, I have managed to keep my own hair.
10. The Goatee: I've traded my mullet for this??? But only because I still can't grow a real beard...and I have a lot of gray in it...which people in my age group with bad hairlines often point out. But it and my official 'collared shirt teacher wear' helps to hide my neck issues apparently, because I have to point it out for people to make fun of me.
11. No Glove: Now me and my kids are official snake hunters. We leave the dead animals alone and go for stuff that can fight back. And what self-respecting big game hunter uses a glove? Except that one time because the snake was a bit crazed.
12. Drawing Book: Absolutely have to have something to draw in or on...especially in meetings or college classes...which drives some people crazy because they think I'm not paying attention. My GPA is considerably higher for college...no Algebra II...
13.Drawing Pens/Pencils: I always have a couple in my pockets...but to date no problems with injury.
14: The Reason I STILL Don't Hardly Ever Wear Shorts: There was a lot of marching in the army but it didn't do anything for building muscles in my legs.
15. The Socks: They are either really ugly dress socks or white...which doesn't work with dress pants supposedly...but I say don't be peeking at my ankles...and all of my ugly dress socks are mismatched somehow at this point so white often wins out...

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Vector Art: Godzilla

(click to enlarge)

It took me a while to piece it together as time permitted, but I finally 'finished' the piece. (I have some small items to take care of for printing and might make some other small adjustments). Chris Leavens' awesome Saguaro Tortoise was the inspiration for doing the item in a vector program. One thing I enjoy seeing from other artists is their process from start to finish. I'll show the process on this later, but I urge other artists to show the process they go through to get to a finished piece. It provides great insight, shows the importance of proper planning, and can be a great teaching/learning experience. Often some of the best discussion have arisen on other artist blogs when they show how they got from point A to point Z.
KelMurphy just posted a sample of her process for an upcoming book...check it out!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Blowing Off Steam

One thing I continually get inspired by is going to such sites as Illustration Friday or Drawer Geeks and seeing all of the great work of other artists. I believe one of the real challenges for an artist (and why these sites are often so great) is making sure not to lose the creative edge when doing traditional work. Yes art fields provide plenty of opportunity for creative problem solving and not being bored to death like more 'traditional' jobs...(I once worked at a window factory for a week...God bless the people that can work an assembly line without going and jumping off a cliff)....but our field comes with its own little special set of stresses. Deadlines, producing quality work, resubmits on last second changes, feast or famine on freelance, having your mind 'on' a whole lot as your problem solving (at 3am, 4am, 5am), driving while drawing when a great idea hits (just kidding...maybe)...etc, etc, etc.

So as I visit such sites I think it is great that these artists put time and effort into producing some of the GREAT work they do just because. Non-artists or people new to the field sometimes miss out on the fact that creative folks need creative outlets or they face burnout just like anyone else. PLUS it often results in learning something that can be used later!

I also often run across posts that were made for some sort of contest, again, just for a creative break. The Vormator challenge (the above picture is from this event) was a contest where you were give 8 simple vector shapes to rotate, combine, overlap, etc to produce anything you wanted. You just weren't allowed to to alter the initial shape or to destroy the shape in such a manner that you couldn't see the basis for the creation.

Another great idea that I've seen floating around is traveling sketchbooks. Artists get together and pass around a sketchbook, sometimes even across the globe to compile different drawing styles. Check out the following links for a really good creative break...

Drawer Geeks
Illustration Friday

Steve's Flying Turtle moleskin exchange

Vormator Challenge
(Even though it is over you can still get the shapes and it is a great creative exercise).

Monday, April 28, 2008

Speaking of Bad Godzilla Flicks

As I was prepping to consolidate files I ran across and old college project. We were to make a movie poster and a CD for the soundtrack. Since I had just written the 20 page paper on Godzilla and the American Version had recently been released to astounding reviews (sarcasm implied) AND we were greeted with Disney's sudden influx of 'every show they ever did on ice' franchise...I asked my prof if I could throw it all together. I came up with a back story...Godzilla moved to New York, just wanting to be left alone...got a job as a plumber, married, etc. etc. But as a misunderstood monster he was hated...The government tricked his wife into divulging his one weakness...an allergy to tomatoes...and the fight was on.

I intentionally went for a bit of the bad photoshop look while trying to not go too bad...wanting to pull in all the cheese of the Disney shows via costume design as well as the whole feel...Note the expressions on the building and tomato..Derek and Brandi from class were kind enough to pose...one thing you can't do with out...willing subjects!

The project was a lot of work due to posing as well as finding images I could scan and piece together that would fit the roughs. On a side note, this is where a lot of students in school fail to adapt, not finding adequate resources or realistically judging quality of items they have to see if they can be used to produce a polished product. I believe I spent about 16 hours in 3 different libraries finding pieces that would work...

Friday, April 25, 2008

IF: Wrinkles

Bob couldn't help but notice there was something not quite right about his son...but he just couldn't put his finger on it...

Friday, April 18, 2008

IF: Primitive "Motivational" Device

I have to laugh as I continue to hear people wonder what has happened to yet another generation of 'lost youth'...While I don't believe in beating children, I do know that the pendulum started swinging to the rough side of town when discipline started to disappear from homes and schools...You used to be motivated to do or not do a lot of things back in the day because you understood that action or inaction could have immediate negative consequences that you didn't look forward to...today we have 'time out'...and prisons busting at the seams, low graduations rates, high drop-out rates,people medicated to no end, unable to fill jobs and importing labor because we don't have people capable of doing the work, and a victim mentality where the system 'understands' if you go out and knock off a liquor store at 3 am or shoot three of your friends...because the notion of negative consequences to actions has been lost...and if you think a timeout is a 'punishment' that works, ask any 16 or 17 year old that gets kicked out of school for a timeout what a punishment it is and how they dread it...

While there are people that take it overboard (and shame on them) you'll never convince me that it doesn't have a strong influence on determining the outcome of individuals and nations.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Godzilla in Progress

For at least a year I've threatened myself with doing a Godzilla pic. Who doesn't love a cheese-filled monster romp on a Saturday afternoon...well, lot's of people I suppose. In college, as they were redesigning Godzilla for the American version, I did a 20 page paper on Godzilla...special effects, symbolism, blah blah blah. It actually had some very interesting stuff...as a kid I wasn't that impressed with the original...but loved all the movies after where there were more monsters. As an adult I've flipped a bit. I'm okay with watching the one's after the original but they can be a bit painful at times. As I reflect on the original as an adult it was actually a pretty deep movie and makes the after movies look as silly as they actually are. I'm not going to get into the debate of the symbolism too much other than to say America did what it had to do at a very difficult time...and it sucks that innocent people were harmed or killed. Only crazy people enjoy war, but I understand that as the world is, sometimes that is the only option...as a veteran and knowing many others, war isn't fun or a treat.

Regardless, the American version came out and I will agree with others...it was a great special effects romp, and I liked the monster design...but it wasn't Godzilla. They turned him into a bit of a chicken and a her no less...but it brought up an interesting idea...as people continue to rehash famous characters, how do you redesign something so recognizable without going overboard. Think of all of the redesigns of Frankenstein's monster. So I decided to give it a shot. I started with several doodles on scraps of what I wanted to try as well as figuring out what media I wanted to use. Since it had been a while since I was all digital on a big project I figured what the hey. So I decided on Freehand...so if the final version turns out nice I can make a big poster without worrying about pixel issues of Photoshop.

What you can't see in the sketch is the buildings or Japanese zero placement...those have been sketched out but as they cover part of the image I wanted to hold of until the big cheese was rendered.

A sneak peek...more is finished but why give too much away at once...

The bad news about vector programs is if you don't have a lot of power, and you have a lot of points, everything can grind to a halt...luckily I have some really powerful computers at my disposal and here's to hoping that won't be an issue...considering how many points he is already taking up...and there is a LOT more to be done...I'm using plenty of layers in case there is an issue. Then I will be able to just save bits and pieces and import them into Photoshop to be pieced together when I determine a final printing size.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Friday, March 07, 2008

IF: Garden

Just a quick one as white death reigns down all around in the state of Ohio...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


The other night I was treated to seeing a bio on Groucho Marx. I did some doodles in my sketchbook of him as I studied his features. The really interesting thing was I noticed his nose was a bit fatter at the tip than I had always thought. But it was a great look into such a quick wit and the master of one-liners...but there was also a bit of sad stuff with regards to his life. It seems he was such a perfectionist and 'on' all of the time so much that it tended to drive people away after a while.

Anyway, the next day in class I was explaining some basics of Photoshop coloring. It is easier to think of it more as a 'painting tool' than a drawing tool. Most people may not see the difference but there is a freer mindset if you think of it this way...like oils, it can be a bit more forgiving filling areas and then going in and adding detail work vs. drawing with a fine point to cover areas. It was easy to 'blob' in spots and use the eraser to mold the shapes. After that it was just a matter of using the brush tool in screen for highlights and multiply for shading (both at lower flows). A lot of computer concept art is done this way and it can have some great results...(I also have a more refined color example of this way back at the start of this blog called skimmer...)


Working in multiple layers and locking off pixels lets you 'stay in the lines' while also adjusting transparencies as needed to keep from having harsh blends when not desired. I chose a young Groucho for two reasons...I didn't have a reference available when I did it...and second...it is REALLY hard to screw up a Groucho drawing...get the hair, brows, and stache halfway correct and you pretty much know who it is...which is why so many people could mimic him...from Bugs Bunny to Alan Alda...a quickie but just a chance to stretch my legs back in the digital illustration realm since I've hit the traditional more the past few months...

Monday, March 03, 2008

IF: Leap 2

I know I already posted once...but sometimes funny (and I use that term loosely) observations hit me more than once...

Friday, February 29, 2008

IF: Leap

"As we bid farewell to Sir Edmund we know it isn't too far a leap to say he was all heart...but that's only because the hyenas were too full to eat any more..."

Monday, February 25, 2008

IF: Multiple

"What do I predict for my dad's record breaking jump attempt? Injuries...multiple injuries..."

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Barratuna Header

After seeing so many great headers with images in them I thought I would give it a shot. This if for my barratuna site...Process was the typical...sketched the idea out...found a good reference of a tuna...redrew everything in my sketchbook to act as a template...went into Freehand and drew it all up...(as described elsewhere...Gradients are much better in Illustrator but being able to make good lines with the Bezigon tool and calligraphic strokes with the expand feature in conjunction with the Bezigon tool makes vector drawing about twenty times faster)...Imported it into Photoshop and did a couple of overlays. You can do lenses in Freehand that act as overlays, but unfortunately if you use too many you get the spinning wheel of death. One thing I noticed, as in real life...is the effect of water on color. My tuna actually has yellow eyes but the water layer tends to give a more realistic color blending.

Now let's see if I can get it to work!

NEW UPDATE: It seems that blogger and Mac's do not mix when it comes to posting headers! I moved to a (blahhh) PC and was able to post my header just fine!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

IF: Theory

"Well that's my theory about what happened to the cake...if you've got something better I'd be happy to hear you out..."

Friday, February 08, 2008

Friday, February 01, 2008

IF: Blanket

At 1:23 AM Florence made a blanket statement about their relationship...

Friday, January 18, 2008

IF: Plain (w/bonus coverage)

Before she had put herself together in the morning Jane always felt kind of plain...

(click to enlarge)

Every year I do drawings for my kids' schools. This one I did for my daughter Sarah (yes, that's her in the corner with crazy glasses and underwear on her head). I'll detail the process later, but during the rendering I started throwing in IF folks whose work I enjoy...this made the composition a bit busy but such is life at times. Unfortunately I left some people out (actually a lot of people whose work I enjoy) because I couldn't find things in a short period of time that I felt would work okay in the scene.

Two less obvious ones are Amber, but she is super busy and never gets to participate in IF...although it would be great if she would...(aka Jane D'oh)...she's pretty awesome and has a keen wit about her which has always given me a good laugh...I couldn't incorporate the Monkey Peaches she grows in the can beside her microwave so I defaulted to the poi plant thing in the dog's flower box...I understand it is a felony to grow those things in Oregon so please keep her hydroponic lab under wraps.

I also started out to do this in color after planning on graphite, doing the linework and some of the painting, but knew it was going in the wrong direction and kept getting pulled to Detlef's site...who does pretty great graphite work. (check the barratuna site for links to these and others.)

So feel free to snoop around the pic and guess if you choose where some of the images come from...and I apologize for subtle issues due to the scanning and paneling of the work...

To ALL that contribute to IF, thanks for the inspiration and laughs!

Detlef-Rendering Medium
Jane D'Oh-Poi Plants
ValGal-Dog House
Pati-Godo Ball
Elizabeth Tofu Squirrel-Stuffed Animal
Steve Flying Turtle-Umm...The Flying Turtle
Ammon-Apple (from the apple project)
Amy Zaleski-Patterned Rug
Mac McRae-Hair Clips and T-shirt
Ms. Froggie-Seeing her wonderful work incorporating her kids I pushed mine in.

Monday, January 14, 2008

What is REAALLY Great About Being an 'Artist'

Every year about this time I get reminded of one of the greatest things about being able to draw and paint...I get to draw pics for my kids' schools...which is why my latest IF posts aren't the 'best rendered'...short on time and what time I do have goes mostly to them.

But there are moments when you run across another's kid and they ask you to draw them something when they see you doodling. I've been in hospitals in the emergency room waiting areas and had a long time to wait...and you see some poor sick kid or impatient one waiting and you can just doodle something and make their day. One of the defining moments in my life was when I was in 2nd or 3rd grade involving an elementary school teacher on cafeteria duty. I saw him doodling and I asked him if he could draw anything. He said he could draw most things. So immediately I threw out, "Can you draw Garfield? and a dragon? and a horse? and a soldier?" Of course I wasn't intending for him to draw those things but it was just a kid's way of thinking out loud. So he leaned over a cooler near us and I continued on a conversation with my friend not giving the other conversation another thought. Within a matter of 5 minutes Mr. Thomson slipped a piece of paper in front of me with Garfield, and a dragon, and a horse, and a soldier. It really blew my mind.

This drawing was done for a young lady that loved tigers. It didn't take that long and the smiles it got were great...I hope those of us that have such capabilities remember that...it NEVER takes that long...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Saturday, January 05, 2008

IF: Are you (100 Percent) sure?

"Well...it was kind of dark...and there were an awful lot of pies flying through the air..."