Tag Archives: artwork

Bounce [re]

Once upon a time, I used to want to go into space. I was good at math and thought I wanted to fly. Then I chased a bullfrog into one of those rain culvers under a dirt road….

….and got stuck.

I went from annoyed to scared fast. I yelled for help, no one heard me. It took about an hour and I found that I could only go forward, so that’s what I did. I stayed calm and freed myself.

Later I watched the Android Bishop do the same thing in the movie “Aliens” and had an anxiety attack. I didn’t know what it was; I just couldn’t breathe and felt as though the room was closing on me. Then I learned that you have to be strapped in and still for training and actual missions and I knew that wasn’t for me.

I needed to be free.

But I never lost my love for space. Watching the shuttles, Voyager, Skylab. It all seemed so, BIG.

Then, one day, I was given a chance to work for NASA, as a contractor. The people bringing me in didn’t know it, but I was so excited!! By then we had Hubble and we’re building the International Space Station. Still launching shuttles. Getting ready to go to the moon again. I was proud to have a PIV card that said that I was at Goddard Space Flight Center. It made me so happy.

But I forgot that happy is a temporary state.

Twilight

I’m going blind

I have glaucoma. It’s pretty far along. They were supposed to operate but I can’t afford it and now my right eye is almost completely gone. My left is down to 86%. And I’m freaking all the way out.

I’m not sure if they can save my eye. I hope so. But I’m really scared right now. I’ve drawn all my life. I don’t have any memories of not doing it. My job is photographer/video editor/ artists.

What happens when I lose my sight? Forever?

I don’t live with anyone. There’s no family nearby. And I suffer from the kind of mental issues that are mocking my continued efforts to not give in to despair. Suddenly that suicide thing that I’ve been holding at bay feels like a mercy killing.

As an artist, if you’d ask me what I feared more than anything, it would have been losing my sight, with losing my hands a close second.

I’m not close to anyone. I’ve been dealing with this by myself for months. The surgery can only save what’s left, maybe. And because it’s the optic nerve that’s dying…well, maybe it’s already done.

I gotta have the surgery. I need to. But my window is closing and soon it won’t matter. I’ll be in the dark. And I’ll never come back.

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.

Void

Well, it’s that time of year when people approach me to draw really buff women. I don’t mind ❤️

Believe it or not, the whole thing is something that flowed from a lifelong love of weightlifting for me. I have absolutely no problem with a woman trying to be as strong as she wants.

Of course my first show as a spectator made me want to draw these superhuman physiques. And the ladies were more amiable and less guarded than the guys when asked. So I naturally started there.

Having someone willing to pose for dramatic effect was a turning point for me. I’d never had an opportunity to do still life drawing; so I relished having access to people so willing. I guess you can say that I gained a new artistic appreciation for bodybuilders.

I try not to over sexualize the people I draw. That component is there of course, but it’s not the point.

If you’re trying to get the same effect in your work, you have to understand that the people you’re drawing ARE PEOPLE. I do the same thing with cosplay. I find it brings out the best in them.

Sometimes it’s good to just draw an emotion. It keeps things simple, but gives a clean look. I actually like those best.

So that’s that! Now you have an answer for my drawings of women being mostly muscular.

Oddly enough, no one wants an off-season image of themselves, lol.

There are a few exceptions. And honestly, if you’re one, let me know, because I’d love to do more pictures like this one.

Misplaced

So… I got kicked out of a Facebook group. I had a blank lunch and decided to draw a few cars. So I posted a request for pictures on a thread. I got a bunch of replies and started doodling away!

Then suddenly, I couldn’t add them. And I was no longer in the group. Understand; I didn’t charge anyone. And I only drew cars for a short while. Oh well…

I did this one for a daily drawing page. Honestly I went a little overboard with the skirt, lol. I try to draw these for time, so they aren’t always my best. Do you recognize the character? Because I’ve drawn her before…

Now this one is of a lady that I find to be funny and honest. She’s a fitness trainer, but you’d never know it looking at her. Then she flexes and BOOM! Muscles out of nowhere, lol.

I HATE using pencils with my prismacolor markers! For one thing, the stupid lead is easily absorbed into the brush tip, completely ruining it. At $6.99 a marker that SUCKS.

Sometimes using a rag to brush off the excess works…

Sometimes.

I used to do pallets for these and still do, usually. But I have enough experience with certain skin tones that it’s unnecessary. Besides, I gave myself a 30 minute time limit. I’m training myself to make videos and I’m trying to keep the time down. So get ready!

So, when I was done, I presented her my picture and she LOVED it! That’s a really awesome feeling. Vindication!!

At least she didn’t kick me out of her group.

Involuntary Mitch

Hey guys! Welcome to my #inktober! As some of you may know, the entire month of October is dedicated to drawing ink based works, a new image a day.

It’s one of my favourite things to do and doubly so this year, thanks to the #baltimorecomiccon being the first weekend. I went out and met a lot of cosplayers for this and I’m drawing each one!

So here’s hoping that I don’t burn out and have to stop, hahaha…

Work has been chugging along and even though my personal life is a huge mess I feel better about everything else. I get to draw for a living!

Some of my favourite projects have been completed on the commuter train ride home. So far the same rule applies this year, with my appetite for creating only growing in recent months.

My style of art has been receiving noticeable tweaks. I’ve even dabbled in the 3D look for images!

So the more I create the more I can create. Isn’t that neat?

I’ve also started working more on setting the mood for certain images, allowing them to convey a bit more emotional range.

So yeah…my life is a trainwreck, but I haven’t felt this good in a long time. That’s weird right?

Life must have thought so too. Because my friend, #calliecosplay, died this past week.

There it was. Straight gut punch.

Surrender to Winning

Freelance life can be great. You’re hired based on your skill and hustle; you get to decide most of the rules of engagement. Yes, for outgoing, social people, it can be a wonderful experience….

…. for the people who hate the concept of other people, not so much.

Now I understand that this is a me problem. I need to be liked. My clientele will want to feel a connection to me. I get that. I shouldn’t be unavailable. It makes perfect sense.

But if I could just draw or paint all day, on a mountain, I would. I have learned though.

Anyway… when I was working on this, I was fresh out of the hospital and trying to find a job. I was a month behind on my mortgage.

And NO ONE was buying my work.

So I started doing portraits. I’m sure that it would take me forever to pay just one month worth of bills this way. But it did make me a lot better at it.

The good news is that I can put my own twist on them. So maybe it’s not so bad. Or maybe I’m becoming better at my people skills…