Sunday, August 31, 2014

#202 CatDog Mechanics

This is a thought I had:

CatDog / Portal mashup. 

This doodle took way longer than it should have.

For those who want explication, CatDog was a show on 
Nickelodeon that ran during the end of the 90s into the 00s.
It was about a cat and dog attached at the abdomen.
Many people wondered how they pooped.

CatDog  of Nickelodeon.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

#201 EGOT 2/12

Another drawing done in Paris the same night as Marvin Hamlisch.

John Gielgud
Emmy - 1991
Grammy - 1979
Oscar - 1981
Tony - 1961

Whatever, John, where's your Pulitzer? Marvin's got one.

PS: there is no order to these. Just done in the order I felt like.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

#200 EGOT 1/12

In an attempt to get better with portraits, I decided I would 
do drawings of everyone who has EGOT'd. So here is that.
I did two of these in Paris.
Not a great drawings, but I guess the point is to get better.

Marvin Hamlisch
Emmy - 1995
Grammy - 1974
Oscar - 1973
Tony - 1976

Dude also won a Pulitzer Prize. Not bad. Not bad at all.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

#199 Seven Wonders Sketches Part Two

No Animalia Post today. Sorreeee. But here's this instead.

For the Seven Wonders Series:
A sketch of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, in large
part inspired by what I remember of Nick's early sketches,
one of which can be seen in my last Seven Wonders post.
I'm very happy with this one, and for the battle, it'll be drawn
very large, with smaller Zeus and Artemis monsters fighting it.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

#198 The Rhinoceros

Animalia: Day 141
The Rhinoceros
After Albrecht Dürer

After Albrecht Dürer + TMNT


Explanation: So I approached this drawing thinking about Dürer's ever-present rhinoceros. Dürer's rhino is a landmark in the history of art and – more importantly for me – in the history of printmaking. Perhaps more broadly, it is a landmark in the history of science and knowledge. It accordingly serves as the cover illustration of Susan Dackerman's exhibition catalogue Prints and the Pursuit of Knowledge. I take this print as a teaching point every time I talk about the history of prints and the power of images, especially in terms of multiples. 

(Dürer's Rhinoceros, via wikipedia)

It remains the quintessential image of a rhinoceros. Despite its inaccuracies, this image was powerful enough to shape the very idea of 'rhinocerosness' for hundreds of years after its production. One can read the wikipedia article (yes, it has its own article) for the whole story, but suffice it to say that this image – apart from looking super cool – changed the history of art, science, and knowledge itself.
And it is still effecting images of rhinos, and artists interested in interpreting Dürer's work in countless ways:

So I thus knew that I too would pay homage to Dürer. I first considered showing a more realistic rhinoceros removing the armor plates that Dürer has applied, as if he were wearing a suit of armor. This website is pretty exciting in showing the armor in its constituent parts. I then was thinking about more anthropomorphic rhinoceroses, and remembered Rocksteady, the constant companion of Bepop, from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I remember him from the cartoon, but it occurs to me that I might have had his action figure as well. I can't remember for sure.

Rocksteady (via TMNTpedia)

So I sketched out the body first on paper, then traced it onto the wacom tablet, giving me a basic outline. Since it was a sketch, at this point I hadn't added any of the clothes, but he was posed holding the gun. Then I started adding skin textures. Eventually, I had added textures to the whole thing, but hadn't added the clothes yet. This was more or less the third image posted above. At that point, I knew I wanted to post a version with all the textures visible, but the gun felt too violent, especially given what happens to rhinos in the wild, and other issues with guns happening right now in America. So I added the "Bang" to neutralize that. But it wasn't enough. I forgot about it and moved on to adding the clothes, which went well. I didn't go as far as giving him cargo pants and combat boots, but I still think it reads as Rocksteady without those, especially with the dangling turtle shell at his hips (what was that all about anyways?). Anyways, after having completed the full Rocksteady outfit, I decided to return and remove the gun (first image). It results in a somewhat awkward stance, but I am glad I did it. It is better than a rhino holding a gun for no reason. The monogram was added last, obviously inspired by / derived from Dürer's own. I also briefly considered adding a version of the Dürer rhino as a Judoon soldier from Doctor Who, but decided it would be too much work, and would cover up all the exciting textures anyways. So alas, no Judoon.

But here is a bonus Rhino from a few years ago, drawn from the Natural History Museum's brochure cover.

Tomorrow (probs not tho): the Saiga Antelope.

Monday, August 18, 2014

#197 The Raccoon

Animalia: Day 140
The Raccoon

So as I mentioned yesterday, this is one of a series of three drawings
of forest creatures on different sorts of vessels (plane, submarine, boat).
This was originally going to be a space ship, but I liked it as a sub better
because I could fill it with more animals. But the raccoon is still kind of 
floating in the way he did in my space ship sketches. The More You Know.
I did make one noticeable change in the actual drawing where I moved
the spotlight not he ground so that it lined up better. Cheating happens.

Tomorrow (not really sure what "tomorrow" is, due to time change going from Paris to Ky): the Rhinoceros.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

#196 The Rabbit

Animalia: Day 139
The Rabbit

So this drawing and tomorrows – the raccoon (as well as the squirrel) 
– were done in 2011 and 2012 as gifts for my girlfriend at the time.
They form a series of forest animals in different ships of sorts.
Thus, they do not have the requisite "fig..." labels. But I colored them
for the purpose of putting them up for Animalia. It is also why the
animals are kind of secondary to the larger narrative of the image.
In any case, I really like how these turned out, hope you do too.
Strangely enough, they will be getting posted in the opposite order
that they were made. So the squirrel, which won't be up for months,
was actually done in early 2011, with the others done in 2012.

Tomorrow: the Raccoon.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

#195 The Quetzalcoatlus

Animalia: Day 138
The Quetzalcoatlus

The quetzalcoatlus is an awesome giant-headed pterosaur.
It's also pretty cool that they're named after a feathered 
serpent God of the Aztecs. After having watched this video
I am realizing that I totally misunderstood the structure of
how its wings collapse when it walks. Whoops. It happens.

Tomorrow: the Rabbit.

Friday, August 15, 2014

#194 The Puffin

Animalia: Day 137
The Puffin
By request, I did the Puffin last night. It threw off the numbers
for the next few I've already done, but I removed the rat from
my list since I drew at least fifty of them for The Alchemist, as 
well as having already drawn a mouse, besides other rodents.
Done digitally, due to lack of scanner. Turned out alright tho.

Tomorrow: the Quetzalcoatlus.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

#193 The Pufferfish

Animalia: Day 136
The Pufferfish

Dat smileeee. More texture brush here for the coloring.

Tomorrow: the Quetzalcoatlus

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

#192 The Pteraspis

Animalia: Day 135
The Pteraspis

Devonian period jawless fish with a hard shell front half.
I'm not really sure how its mouth works.

Also, I rediscovered some texture brushes I used to use,
and so you will be seeing some of those in the next few.
Also, I am pretty proud of the water texture, which was
done with a regular brush at low opacity, and then filtered
with blur and sharpness until it looked as it does here.
Surprisingly successful in its verisimilitude.

Tomorrow: the Pufferfish.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

#191 The Psittacosaurus

Animalia: Day 134
The Psittacosaurus

Some simple colors but I like how they turned out.
Wasn't a fan of Barney when that was a thing, but apparently
I am kind of into coloring dinosaurs pink and purple.

Tomorrow: the Pteraspis.

Monday, August 11, 2014

#190 The Pronghorn

Animalia: Day 133
The Pronghorn

My first horned quadruped in a little while!
As much as I dislike all of the images of hunted and dead animals,
I am still pretty into taxidermy and the aesthetic of mounted heads.
Also, ritual masks that are way too big for their own good,
and art that emulates that sort of aesthetic. Anyways I kind of combined
those into a dude wearing a big animal head and dancing.

But I am very happy with how this one turned out.

In any case, I had originally drawn a boring body for this guy,
which reminded me too much of my drawings of the deer and chamois,
so I switched his body out for a human carrying a mounted head.
Which kind of negates this guy's status as a horned quadruped, eh?
Here's how it was originally going to look, via phone photo of process:

Tomorrow: the Psittacosaurus.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

#189 The Porpoise

Animalia: Day 132
The Porpoise

The porpoise. For me, feels like another kind of boring one, but people 
seemed to really like the Porcupine, so maybe folks will like this too.

In any case, the next few days will be filled with ones that I think
are a lot more exciting and fun, so look forward to that!

Tomorrow: the Pronghorn.

Friday, August 8, 2014

#188 The Porcupine

Animalia: Day 131
The Porcupine

A little bit of color.

Tomorrow: the Porpoise.

#187 The Polar Bear

Animalia: Day 130
The Polar Bear
My first memory of an art museum was going to a museum in
elementary school. I don't remember what or where the museum was
(Lexington? Louisville? Cincy?), but I remember our assignment was
to seek out an artwork we liked and copy it. I picked a drawing (or was it
a print?) of a polar bear. A very simple line drawing. I remember copying
it closely and noting the curvature of the back and the hump where the
shoulder blades protrude. I was very young. But it has stuck with me,
very clearly, for some reason or another. It was not a sitting polar bear.
I can picture it very clearly. In any case, I don't think I have drawn a
polar bear since then. And for some reason the task seemed daunting.
But then I did it. So here's that.

minimal background.

Tomorrow: the Porcupine.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

#186 The Platypus

Animalia: Day 129
The Platypus
In retrospect, maybe I shoulda tried one with super long limbs.

Kept colors simple.
Did a big batch of scans so Animalia is back on for a few days.

Tomorrow: the Polar Bear.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

#185 The Alchemist, Pages

Here are the first few pages of The Alchemist, the comic from the previous post. As you can see, the further along in the comic I illustrated, the more complex the drawing style got, to where the first page was about one night's work, the second page was maybe two days' work, and the third, unfinished page was already at about four days' work. And at that point I hadn't even reached the introduction of the protagonist. So the project seemed to be getting a little out of hand, in terms of how long it would have taken. Potentially it is something I can return to at any point, but we will see what happens. In any case, you can see the progression of style to be more realistically rendered, especially comparing the human figures. As mentioned in the previous post, the text and dialogue were written by a collaborator, Jonathan Martin.
Most of the panels on this page are unresolved, both in terms of composition and finish. I wasn't really sure how to integrate everything, especially in horizontal compositions when I wanted two characters interacting (in communion), which felt like it needed a more vertical slant.

Friday, August 1, 2014

#184 The Alchemist - Sketches

About two years ago, I started discussing the idea of making a comic 
book with a friend in the graduate program at SMU. He brought in an
English major friend from undergrad who already had some ideas
about a story, and together we worked more on basic outlines of plot.
It was going to be something like a supernatural comic about an 
alchemist in medieval Spain who hunts demons using alchemy - 
potions and gunpowder and some supernatural things. Knives too.
Like a medieval alchemist version of Guy Davis's The Marquis.
In any case, here are some character sketches.
The protagonist. 
Based his appearance on Medieval/ Renaissance images of alchemists, 
Jews, arabs, etc. (i.e. the 'other'). Thus, forked beard, pointy hat.

Demon sketches.
Based some on Medieval / Renaissance images of demons.
The one at the top left would be the main demons, and bear similarities
to the Angel I also sketched. The little guy with black wings, and the 
goofy wobbly leg guy to his left would have also been in it, I think.

This is the angel's design, based on medieval images and biblical
descriptions. The demon and angel were meant to look like they
were at one point the same race because the bible and stuff.

#183 Doodles

Don't really like this. I am apparently bad at just drawing random things
and whatever comes to mind. Started with the lion and worked from there. 
In hindsight, it looks like I was channeling Jeremy Fish with the stump/ 
hand/ woodchuck on the right. I like the town in the clouds, but regret 
adding the rainbow clouds... I think the town was inspired by miniature 
sets from some old Doctor Who (William Hartnell) episodes I was watching.