Tag Archives: sketchpad paper

Surprise!

     Yeah yeah, I know. ” What the hell is he doing posting in the middle of the week?” 

    Well two reasons. One, Lee Binks of #leebinksfitness is competing in the Arnold Europe, so I decided to draw her as motivation. I’m cool like that. Go Lee!

      The other is that I was trying out a new sketchpad. However, I forgot an important factor; paperweight. It absorbs ink, but only to a limit, so it was resistant to my usual technique. Ugh!!

    So I got more of a watercolor look. See? So never stop learning or trying something new. It’s okay to make mistakes, as long as you learn from them.

More Good News for Bad News

    My time for art has been rather tight lately. If I’m not doing stuff like the image above for clients, I’m editing videos and doing photography. It all adds up, so I try not to think of it as work. That would kill the vibe, lol.

    In the meantime, it’s always a joy to find an hour or two for my own personal projects. This weekend was such a break. I went to my local Starbucks, sat down and begin this picture. Actually had a guy get upset when he was informed that the person in the picture was a girl. Silly dude, strong girls rock!

So since this is the month for it, expect a few more strong women 😉

Laughing in the Pain

      There’s a reason I hate doing landscapes. I grew up in a nonstop version as a kid. Later, the military made sure I had plenty of alone time in various natural locations around the world. Your dad took your family camping for a few days? My “uncle” Sam took me for weeks, sometimes months on end. It got old.

    Still, I can appreciate the value of being able to create one. So occasionally I give it a go. It’s good to practice ALL your skillsets, not just your favorites.

     So when I was asked to provide a serene sunrise image for a customer, I didn’t have a problem with the issue. It’s good to be able to have a diverse portfolio, you know?

      Working towards a complete picture is such a struggle. It took a lot of time for me to understand that, to a certain degree, I was little more than a glorified Xerox machine. I could copy, but I couldn’t create.

    It took an uncomfortably long period of time to develop my mind’s eye. To imagine something or someone and bring it out into the world is highly satisfying. I would never have learned to do so if I had stayed in my comfort zone.

   So it’s okay to try new techniques. Give something different a try! You’d be amazed at how many times it proved immensely helpful in a form I was already familiar with. If all you’re doing is stuff you already do well, be prepared to see your peers surpass you.

Bygone Be Gone

      This year I’ve started the process of reducing the amount of non-art in my life. I’ve also started to do those things I’d avoided until now.

     The first thingis getting my furnace repaired; it caught fire a couple of years ago and I’ve endured some bad winters huddled in one room of my house.

    I had avoided fixing things because to do so meant conversations with my ex. That’s it. 

   On a similar note, I’ve paid for my mental health and physical injuries myself. After watching my dad’s frustration with the VA ( veterans administration), I was loathe to visit them, even though I was medically discharged and had received extensive psychiatric care. I just didn’t want to be deconstructed for a couple of dollars. Plus I was fine, I continually lied to myself.

    I started working on the floors upstairs in my house this weekend. I always had a reason to procrastinate. But I’ve decided that my house isa physical manifestation of my mental health and self-esteem. So shit gets fixed.

   Broke up.

    My art is now on display in my nearby comic store. They framed it and had me sign it, so they must like it…

     And I have a few vehicles to get rid of. Maybe I shouldn’t, but honestly I feel that I need to. 

I’ve been asked to do the covers for a few indie comics. With pay! So there’s that. I’m feel like I’m starting to get a set of goals. We’ll see.

   Last year I lost 60 pounds. This year I’ll settle for 40 more.  And the hair.

   I still don’t know about the hair.

Stuck in Trade

     I’ve been asked to work on about three independent comics since Christmas. It’s a big deal to me. I’m pretty flattered by it all.

     My answer was no.

     Don’t get the wrong idea. I’ll never be too good for something like that. It’s awesome to even be considered!

    But I have so many projects and commitments that I would have to disappoint someone else. And I keep my promises, sometimes to my detriment.

      So I really don’t have the time to dedicate to someone else’s lovechild. It requires a devotion that is already spoken for in my life. So I find myself somewhere I never conceived of.

     Saying no to art.
    

    I have to let go of free art too. A few cosplayers are upset about it. So am I! 

    It means I don’t have time for my own projects. I waited so long to get to this point and it never occurred to me that I wouldn’t have time to have fun.

     I shouldn’t complain, right? I’m on the right track to fame and fortune!!

     To be honest, I just want to work on things that are fun and interesting. So far I have. Only a few customers turn out to be needy douchebags…

    Maybe next year I’ll do a book with someone. Maybe. My experience with my own short story was annoying. I actually would love to do covers.

      It’s possible that it’ll happen for me. I can kind of make it out in the distance.

     I’ll know my path. 

Break[me]

      I’ve already made EIGHT images this year! Didn’t even realize it until someone else told me. It’s gotta be a new record for me.

    All of themare improvements over what I was doing at this point last year. I guess practice makes perfect after all. 

     In the interest of full disclosure, the end of last year required me to spend a few days checked into my favorite mental health center. I’m okay now. I’ll always fight to be okay. It’s my only real job: living.

      Last time you guys got to see the early version of my pricelist. A few of the upper range things changed; their price points were slightly off. But overall, I’ve gotten pretty positive feedback. The commission list is almost full for this month, with more work planned for next month. Dare I dream?…

      My life isn’t quite where I want it to be, but at this point its just a matter of tweaks. My business plan and life plan are on track and as long as I keep my PTSD and isolation in check, you guys can expect a better level of art.

    So if you have any questions, comments or requests, pass them along! You guys have been here for the ride and hopefully the finish line for this level is in sight 😊.

    I wish you peace and prosperity in the New Year.

New Year, Old Me

    I know, I know… I haven’t been around much. The death of a loved one affects us all in predictable ways. Moving on…

     I’ve caught up (almost) to all my commission based work! I’ve done well this year and look forward to next year being even better! But for now a few people have decided to let me put their images on my page. How nice!

     Of course, some of my favorite projects are going to be in a slightly larger size this year. Now that I have a fancy tilting drafting table, it’s game on! Purchased with the proceeds of my work of course 😊.

      I’m still doing black and white studies for people. It amazes me how much a simple drawing can reach others. And good news! Now that I know what my supplies and time are worth, I have a price index…

         so looking forward to drawing a LOT.

       

Recollect

    All of my favorite people seem to be either dead or out of my life in any meaningful way. That’s the kind of observation that can ruin your holidays!

I’m sure I’ll be fine.

     So last week I decided to do an online tutorial, live on Facebook. It was pretty successful; I had no idea so many people were interested in Prismacolor shading process for markers!

    A couple of people told me I had a unique look and wanted to know where I learned it. The school of trial and error was my reply. Sure, I’d like to be able to have the style of an Artgerm or Warren Luow, but I’m proud of coming up with my own solutions.

   Having said that, I often find myself inventing a wheel that already exists. But the process of finding and implementing the solution teaches me a lot.

     This will never end for me. I’ll always be learning something new and exciting in art. Always picking up a new technique. When I look at my old stuff all I see is what I did wrong! 

Rather than get discouraged, I take it to heart. If I wasn’t growing in both knowledge and experience, it would still seem fine to me. If your stuff from a few years back still looks great to you, you’re stagnating.🙁

     While I’m content with the praise I received last week for this image, I know that next year I’ll cringe a little looking at it. 

      It’s only natural.

Friends with Adversaries

    Sometimes I can slip in a picture at work and this is one of those times. Think of it as an art study, the kind teachers usually put on a person the middle of the room.

     The drawing itself wasn’t the hard part. I knew the translucent quality of the bottle was what would try to kick my ass, so I begin by gameplaninng it first.

     Of course I couldn’t ignore the headphones! Getting the textures right proved to be technically easy. Harder edges with more separation in values gave things that hard plastic sheen.

    Now came the bottle itself. I began by laying out my mids and leaving highs as page white for now…

    …after which I begin to add reflections by using a darker red. It gave the illusion of a highly reflective surface, which made for a good starting point.

     From there I chose the original color I used to create my mids to add gradation to the bottle. It helped create the outline of the other speaker, as well as the twist grooves for the cap.

   Finally I used Deco Peach to go over the entire thing and add a bit of glossiness to the bottle. A white gel pen created the lettering and logo and it was done!

    I hope you guys like the end result.😊

Keep it Apart

       So with #inktober fast approaching, my apprehension about my upcoming project is high. While I believe in my abilities, it’s a pretty daunting task!

   Luckily for me, I’m used to producing results in a timely manner. This past year has left me with huge improvements in my skillset; the script writing was a new skill as well as inking. 

    Lots of artist will be participating this year, so I’m honestly excited about the prospect. Hopefully I impress a lot of people, but the experience will tell me a lot. 

    In the meantime, I’m wrapping up all the pending images I had to complete, like this one. Some people aren’t expecting theirs yet. Oh well… I’m not going to rush, but come Friday, I expect to have completed five.

    I’ll be posting here of course. You guys will get to see plenty of work.