Category Archives: change

Phantom Pain; you [never] get over it

Well, I’m back from vacation. Thanks for being patient and sorry I had to post rushed art. It’s not as much fun when you’re not intentionally doing it!

This work was almost completely different. I originally was going to draw Domino the way she appears in the comics, albino with one dark eye.

Think Spot from the Dick and Jane books.

ANYWAY, while telling an associate of mine about my grand plan, she laughed.

“You’re such a contrarian”.

I almost argued with her. Which would have proved her point.

Instead I decided to, for a change, do what was expected. It was hard, you guys!

I may have a problem. A psychological blindspot.

Aside from the original sketch, most of this was done without reference. I figured it was okay if it wasn’t quite Zazzie; after all, she’d stood us up at All Star Con. I owed her nothing, ha-ha.

Next came the color markers. I was going to do flats of colour, but forgot and started getting overly elaborate. Oops!

Next came the colored pencils. I have to admit, it’s been many months ago since I last used them I did a few blend outs to make sure that I was using the right pallet. I’m sure my instinct for it will come back eventually.

In the meantime, I had to fight an old enemy; smudging. While your strokes are fresh the oil from your hands can continue to smear them, usually leaving your image looking blurry. A piece of paper or cloth under hand fixes the issue. Also, Pro tip: learn how to shade by gradually lifting pressure on your stroke. Unless you’re using charcoal, the ability to shade without smudging is going to improve everything about your image.

Finally, I was almost done! I was going to let the lips have a more natural tone until I was asked why I left her mouth looking flat.

Fresh eyes on the image. Plus, I’m trying to fight my opposite urge. So I “fixed” it.

And that’s that. I’ll probably do more colored pencil work. It was fun.

Tears in Rain

A lot of people remember Rutger Hauer as his seminal creation, Roy Batty. Not me. I had no interest in the saxophone tuned, smoke filled crime drama. Nope.

My first Rutger film was Blind Fury.

That movie was a weird, fun filled adventure. It made me laugh. Seeing him walking off in the end made me want to see further adventures.

Next was Split Second.

I’ll be honest; I didn’t see all of it. The Mrs and I were really busy making out (newlyweds). But I do remember believing his character was him. He was a sort of action hero, but a more emotionally honest one

I saw Hitcher while stationed overseas in Germany. It was running in a small theatre in Munchen(Munich) And me, being an idiot went in to see it.

It was in German. But I still got the point.

So finally, FINALLY I decided to give Blade Runner a try. There were a lot of versions, but Netflix only had one. I was divorced, cynical and bitter. Perfect timing, right?

I loved it. It didn’t try to explain the world we were seeing too much. I could almost grasp a lot of it. But I enjoyed two people in it the most.

Rachel. And Roy.

I’m not sure what that says about my mindset then. I guess I had lost a lot of my self identity at that point.

I wasn’t a soldier, husband or even allowed to be a dad. I was holding on to a job and had tried to take my own life. I’d been encouraged to. By my wife.

So the entirety of his very eloquent self eulogy deeply affected me. Here was a man who had lost everything and was about to lose the only thing he had left. And all he wanted was one more day.

So I decided to try it. Just be here one more day. That was nine years ago.

So yeah…Mr Hauer saved me while I metaphorically was dangling by the fingertips. So I drew him twice. He died in the same year Roy Batty did in the movie.

Symmetry.

Surprise!

I have to admit; people can still surprise me. Here I am, sitting at my desk and I was drawing a blank. So I decided to change locales and took a lunch at Starbucks.

I decided to draw a car, but from the inside. I used to own a 66 mustang, which seemed like the perfect vehicle; simple and purpose built.

Of course, people started to crowd around. I’m used to it at this point and most are willing to let you work in peace and simply watch.

Most.

This one guy was VERY persistent. To be honest, he was getting on my nerves! But I stayed calm. I was in a public space after all. My desk was starting to seem like an oasis at this point.

The car that lead to the image I drew #rita

So…I explained. Turns out, he owns a 66 mustang. And you know what? He bought the drawing on the spot. I was a little surprised. But I learned a lesson. From now on, I’ll think “customer interaction” BEFORE I think “interruption”.

Day by Night

Sorry guys. It’s been an interesting week for me. I suffered a scratch on my cornea somehow in my sleep! I get to wear a fun eyepatch. Needless to say, the art may be wonky, haha.

I still think that I did pretty well. This one came from a photo provided by someone else. I had to buy a new gel pen for the hair, since mine was stolen.

I also drew a friend who was feeling a little down about her looks since she wears glasses now. Oh well, it could have been an eyepatch, lol.

All of time at its end

I’m trying to draw away a dark cloud that is trying to settle over me. I might succeed; it’s worked in the past.

There’s no guarantee that it will though. But motivation is motivation,and even though I try not to tap into negative emotions for my art anymore, sometimes it helps.

But you can’t stay there. It’s a loop and the only real way to break it is to do the things that you don’t feel like doing. Upbeat music. Time spent outside. Go online and listen to jokes or comedy clips…

….get out of your head.

CareFree

Believe it or not, I actually had artwork ready for last week. But I ended up two states away at a hospice center, watching an old aquaintance pass away.

It was interesting in a terrifying way.

I’ve seen people die. I’ve caused it as well (do NOT recommend). But that’s pretty quickly over. You can’t process everything and it leaves you a little dazed.

This was… different.

First the call came and I drove to North Carolina where my friend had retired. I thought he was hurt. Then they explained and I told them that I hadn’t seen him in over a decade. It was awkward. We weren’t super close. But I decided to stay.

I have never had someone look so happy to see me. EVER. We talked a little, got caught up. My brain was having a hard time processing that he wasn’t just….in the hospital. You know? Like he’d get better somehow.

His biggest fear was that no one would come. “I couldn’t think of anybody, man. I was a little scared”.

….

What could I say? Having noone there is pretty much a horrible thing. When he turned and stop talking, I got a break. The nurses thanked me for coming and wanted to hear how I knew him. The more they asked the less I could answer. Finally the question came…

Why did you come?

Those places are very religious. He talked a lot about the Lord and what he believed. Sometimes he just stared at me, like he was trying to memorize my face.

Eventually he was gone.

I drove home. During the drive I thought about how I had pulled away from friends and family. Three years ago, I had tried to end my own life. I thought about this stuff over and over.

Anyway…it was a busy week.

Evidence

My life is still out of whack right now, but drawing as therapy isn’t working. I kinda shifted where I emotionally gather the energy to draw from. Doing so, means that I have brown outs, of sorts, and can’t just put on sad or dark music to get back in the flow. My playlists are useless!!

So when I was asked to do a caricature for someone I reluctantly agreed. I’ve never been very good at those; that weird cartoony look is definitely not the Marvel style of drawing comics. But I decided to give it a shot.

It came out really well and she immediately made it her profile and put it on her Instagram, Facebook… ALL of her accounts. She was actually happy to pay and now a bunch of her friends want one. I feel a little bit better.

I think I’ll play my 2017 playlist.