Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Aviation Museum

Today we went to the aviation museum.  I've got to say, as a closet mechanical junkie I found this place to be wonderful!  Would I be terrified to actually fly in any one of these?  Absolutely.  But on the ground, all I want to know is how anyone figured out how to make these complicated engines.
 Tomcat engine.


Amphibious airplane.  It rather looked like a cartoon.

I may be back with a sketchbook before long.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


After I finished my last piece, I found I had a paper trail as to how I got there, so I thought I'd share.  Here's a progression for anyone who's curious.

For me, big pieces start small. Well, they usually start as big ideas, followed by frustration at not being able to realize said big idea, followed by disillusionment, followed by compromise. After that's all done, for me these things start with people.

After some lifedrawing,
and some uh... hideous stages...

I start gradually adapting sketches into characters.

With two rough ideas, I scanned this one in and played with size and position.  Then I literally just printed out whatever I slapped together, at size.

Then I used my "lightbox" (*ahem* a piece of glass, a shade-less lamp, and three odd boxes) to continually draw over my 'frames,' letting them evolve a bit each time.

With an okay sketch, I did one final trace to grab the essentials.

I traced that sketch to my watercolor paper, penned it lightly, and attacked background with a pencil. (Background is my silent demon. It never ever looks like I pictured, but we usually end up in compromise.)   
After a lot more frustration and usually 2-5 declarations of "I give up!  Scrap this!" ("No, no, you can't scrap this is your last bit of paper!") we end up here:

Then I like to add some digital paint in there (careful not to actually paint over the real paint) to really bring out what I couldn't do with watercolors alone:

And that's it.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Some Really Nice Design Work (not mine)

Nothing new since my last terrible foray, and my job makes me want to bang my head against the wall this week, so here's some wonderfully beautiful design work by Uğur Derinoğullu.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Alright I don't have anything new.

Messing about. Dark-pencil finished sketch of red-headed Korean woman, poorly named Indigo.
And I just realized a bunch of things wrong with the sketch, namely that the face is really screwed up. Seeing mistakes is progress, right? Right?! Oh brother.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

2nd Chance Kada'var

I felt badly about how much I mutilated this sketch in my first attempt to paint it. Round 2 - begin!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Death and the Lamplighter

I don't know if I like this better or not.

Painting attemp


It's a start.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Cody sleeping

My dog sleeping on his bed, pictured from behind/above. Sleeping ten-year-old dogs don't move around too much, so I used him to start playing around with pure digital paint. Though if you can't tell where the head is, I'm sorry.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Native American crossed with Buddhist Monk.

Why? I don't know.

Death and the Lamplighter - first pass

Here's an unedited scan of a recent (non-digital) painting. Since I've been working on the edited version, this one looks rather sad and grey. But I'm sure I'll overwork the edited one in the end, so I should appreciate this simplicity a bit more....

What a mess.

Do I remember how to do this? ...No, not really, no.

A very melancholy man from a story. I decided to use this as my own re-introduction to digital things, and went crazy. [aka, made a mess.] It... well... it's going to take me awhile to get used to. I got excited about using my new tablet and then realized I like the sketch better. Oh well. Here's the (much better) original:

AHA! Scanner. And other things.

A scanner is a wonderful thing. As is a wacom tablet. I now have both, and they seem to have excitedly shaken awake the lazy illustrator-on-hiatus that I've been for the past two years. What can capture this feeling? Uh, I think it has to be Toy Story 3's enthusiastic, "NEW TOYS!"

Oh, and I made a light box. I haven't used it, mostly because it is sitting in pieces in my garage. But hey, it's better than the improvised lightbox that consisted of a piece of glass from a table top balanced precariously on different-sized small boxes with a naked lamp underneath. Progress, progress....