Tag Archives: prismacolor pencils

Consume

Okay, I’m writing this after not sleeping since 0200 Sunday. It’s Monday. So if I seem a little loopy, I’m kinda always that way.

This is my #earthburger. It’s an idea I came up with as a teenager in the 80’s and my original garnered me a few blue ribbons as a teen.

Wondering why I didn’t post it?

It was stolen. And as it turns out, my art teacher was the thief.

It’s a little complicated… first thing you need to know is that before I ever took a class, I could make my own art. The REAL reason I took her class was because my future ex-wife took the course.

I was a jock. And a metalhead. And black in a small Alabama town. So my interest were all over the place! But art was my first and best love.

My “teacher” saw my potential. After realizing that she’d never get the best out of me drawing bison skulls and old boots, I finally got to do what I wanted. And sit next to my girl.

My life was perfect.

I made the town paper for winning state awards. I got to travel. Had you asked me, I would have told you that I was going to the Art Institute of Atlanta after high school. Or the army, which was the family business.

So when I started asking about possible scholarships and letters of recommendation, she surprised me. She told me no. She said that she didn’t feel that I was right for art school. That it was a waste of time.

And that she wouldn’t recommend me.

I have/had a great poker face. But that hurt went through me. Seriously, it went through my feet. I felt like I was sinking, even though I wasn’t moving.

I stopped drawing. Completely. So she flunked me.

Fast forward a year and a half. I’m walking down the hallway of my Alma Mater, after coming home after Desert Storm. I’m a paratrooper, so I get lots of accolades from teachers and friends. And then I see it.

A Ferrari F40 that I drew. It was one of my first experience with Prismacolor pencils and I used ALL the red, lol. I had been told that my art was stolen. And yet there it was, with a ribbon on it from a couple of months prior.

I learned later that she never sent any of the African American artist in her program to college. Had a few tell me that she said that they weren’t “good enough”. A few are professional artist.

I learned from that. I’m sure that current me could definitely get over self doubt; there’s a lifetime of experience. But I always remember that part of my life and I try to encourage those with gifts to believe in them.

No matter what.

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.

Throw Away Day

As usual, I find myself drawing without a customer or goal in mind. Actually after seeing Black Widow’s new look in the avengers movie, I suddenly remembered the first Avenger female in leather that I ever saw on the big screen; Emma Peele, played by Uma Thurman. If you don’t remember it or the TV show, that’s fine.

People tend to expect me to draw things that they’re familiar with, but the best part of being a nerd is having parts of pop culture that were ignored in your head. When I drew this everyone thought I was doing Black Widow! But if I always made what was expected, then I’m no longer an artist.

So yeah… sometimes you don’t get to be as original as you’d like, but as long as you keep your mind open, you can find your own spin for everything.

Reset

Welcome to the current iteration of my former life. I know, it’s been awhile. A lot has changed for me; I no longer work for the government and for awhile I worked in New York city. I’ve had several setbacks. Things could be much worse, lol.

I have kept up my art this time. I’ll do it until there’s no me to do it. And if that sounds morbid, rest assured it’s meant in a very funny way.

This poster was more about breaking me out of a funk I’d been in. Taking a chance on yourself can be scary, especially when it seems as though you aren’t going to be able to succeed!

Of course it wasn’t true; I just REALLY sucked at business. But as I kept going I got a little commission work for character development on a couple of books. I took a few classes. I’m not rich, but I’m getting there.

That painted look is getting easier to achieve with my work. Of course there is no paint involved; it’s just markers and pencils. But I’ve gotten better at it.

You can see the depth in detail. It’s taken a while to get to this level. I love doing superheroes and bodybuilders so this was fun for me.

I guess dealing with life has helped my art.

Sorry I was gone guys. Thanks for supporting me and coming back for more.

Interest

     This picture is for a customer based off of a REALLY crappy photo. I mean flip phone quality! I definitely need to update my requirements for images.

   All in all, I’m okay with how it came out. The person it was presented to was ecstatic I’m told.

At the end of the day, that matters quite a bit.

    Also, this was the first image I’ve created on my new artdesk! It feels official now.

     In the interest of full disclosure, I also had to put a white light LED bulb in the lamp I bought. I didn’t realize how off I was seeing colors until I corrected them. See the yellow? Ew…

   Second layer is prismacolor pencils in case you’re wondering. I get amazing depth in my images this way. It makes a HUGE difference in the overall look.

  Also, no more expensive artist tape, especially since I get better edges with painters tape, hahaha. 

    Some of the time was spent just getting her face right. Again, using a small image and trying to get it photo accurate was an enormous challenge. Apparently, it looks like her; the relief I felt made all the little struggles worth it.

     So after a few more touch ups, I’ll spray it with fixer and it’ll be on its way.

Uno Problema

     I was going to remark about the wonderful weather we’ve had recently, but since the cold came back, why bother? Instead I’m just trying to do my thing and put some art together. Is that cool with you guys?

     Sorry the photos for this don’t start at the very beginning. I was so engrossed in what I was doing I almost totally forgot! I’ve decided to break out the pencils occasionally, just to stay fresh. Plus I’m intrigued by Crossfit right now, so I decided to draw one of its athletes.

     I have a request for a rush project, with no concern for my price!! So happy!! It doesn’t mean that I’ll gouge the client; that’s how you get a bad reputation, something I intend NOT to cultivate. Still, it’s a signpost letting me know that I’m heading in the right direction.

Wish me success!!

[un] Sound

       What a horrible year! Or at least January was. February has a lot to make up for. Luckily the check I got from one of my old credit cards was a nice start. So let’s get rolling…

   This one is purely for fun. I bought this tanned paper notebook a while ago and have rarely used it. Plus my prismacolor pencils have been languishing at home, so it was time to dust those skills off.

     The usual tactic here is to use the shade of the paper as one of your colors; it’s a pretty cool effect, but I could care less about it. 

      I’m after time on this one. Not as a sketch, but a complete picture. 

       Honestly, I do images like this to keep the fun aspect of art alive. People always want to see their ordinary lives in art and I could never understand the reasoning. Why? But now I feel that what they’re trying to do is capture a feeling visually.

    So each layer of color adds emotional context. And if you miss that then there’s a good chance that your technically sound picture can feel dead.

     No artist wants a disconnect in his images. The thing with being self taught is that you have to realize this yourself; otherwise you’ll draw a lot of dead faces and mannequins, lol.