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Thursday, March 24, 2011

CGHub Challenge Freya: Ink

I moved away form the Odin sketch I had chosen earlier because as I was working with it I was becoming more and more unhappy with the way it was turning out, and I greatly dislike drawing with a pen and tablet (especially with an already sore wrist). 

So I moved back to Freya, doing this in a more Art Nouveau style. So far it's taken me a few hours to pencil this out and ink it with microns. I plan to start paining it in watercolor and going back to the lines with ink, then scanning it and possibly going back into the piece later on in Photoshop. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

CGHub Challenge Thumbs: Norse Mythology

It's been a bit since I posted anything on here. Over ate CGHub there is a challenge to create an illustration based on Norse Mythology, which I am geared and ready to do. Listening to Carl Orff's Carmina Burana (O Fortuna) and doing some sketches.

Originally I had two ideas in mind, one of Odin and is Huginn and Muninn and another of Freyja. So here are the two sketches....



While I like them both I am leaning towards bringing up my Odin piece because I find it more interesting and also because I have yet to add more men into my portfolio work. I have aims to make the ravens into a Valkyrie type instead of staying with the birds. Some inspirations for this challenge in my research has been Rackham, Waterhouse, and Abbey, along with a look through some Byzantine art. As for the shaping  of the image there is still a lot of work to be done. I am a bit worried about the lighting but am also looking forward to seeing how I am able to develop this piece. 

So wish me luck...going back at it....

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sanguis Angelicus WIP

It's not often that I go out on a limb with making art anymore...not really too much since fundamentals class back at the Academy that is. And while it's good to experiment artistically, sometimes all the prompting you really need is the discovery of a gessoed canvas panel, a doodle, and the urge to spend hours of your life you will never recapture spreading pigment and water around on a board.

Above is the original sketch on the gessoed canvas panel that was chillin' in the back of my closet. Normally I would work on a more familiar surface (and after painting on this surface, that has been backed up 100%. This is gonna be the last time I switch over from watercolor paper). It was a bit hard to draw on...I even busted out my pencil set and used graphite and (attempted to use) and eraser too! Normally I use ballpoint pen....

Once I was pleased with the sketch I went ahead and sprayed some workable fixative. Since I hadn't really done this before I looked up some information online about using this kind of surface with watercolor and ink medium. Most seasoned artists weren't too impressed by this process (after the first few minutes in I can understand why that would be). Mainly it's because the medium, in my case watercolors, wouldn't even go down onto the surface after I had sprayed it with the fixative. I had to pull out acrylic paints and water it down and even that didn't really want to stay down either. You see the 'spatter' mark effect on the image above? Those are the areas where either the medium wouldn't stick, or took too  too well. 

It also took nearly an hour to dry. Normally I am not a fan of using a blow dryer because it spread the pigment around....which is what happened when I tried it on this. So I took an hour break waiting for it to dry.

When the watered down acrylic layer dried, I decided to just keep painting, negating any more layers of spray fixative. Using watercolors (I tend to favor certain pallets such as red, yellow, and violet) I began to place some establishing colors. This was also tricky as the surface wouldn't allow me to work in my normal manner, expecting the paints to react the way I am used too. If I had too little pigment then by trying to add in more I would instead lift off entire areas of color, and if I used too much it would form pools (which you can see by the blooms). 

So (not including the drying time) it's been a little over 2 hours to get to this stage. While this is still mostly watercolor I have also continued to mix in watered down acrylic paints. I have inks on standby, along with marker, and colored pencil since I have a feeling that once I have started to really establish some things I will be pulling out all the tools at my disposal to make this into a piece of functional art. 

Finding reference images on the net has been hard, as they are all miniatures which are quite small, and all from a straight on profile with a lot of details washed out. But all in all, I think it's coming out better than I initially thought it would when I realized the problem of the paint not staying where I place it. So, we'll see what happens to this piece. 

More to come.....

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Mischief Making

It's been a while since I posted anything on here so I thought I'd let the world (or what few people pay attention to this blog) know that I am indeed still alive (or at least risen from the dead) and still working on some things in regards to art.

So what am I up to? Well, I am still trying to sort out some things in regards to a portfolio after spreading myself out a bit too much in college between different industries. Right now some of the things I am tinkering around with include this Segmentation Challenge over on The Art Order.

Above is the final thumbnail that I decided on for the challenge. It targets preschool to kindergarten aged girls, which is not a normal target audience of mine (given the amount of pin-up and character work that pops up in my sketchbook.....the thumbnails for this are quite out of place in there). This was actually a bit more challenging than I had originally thought it would be, since a lot of my initial sketches started turning into pin-up or else otherwise targeted towards a more mature audience. 

Not 100% sure I will polish this one off. I was having fun with it while doing it to start, but inking digitally has proven to be a bit more frustrating than usual since my return to traditional inking with an actual brush and real ink. 

Other than the above challenge I am also tinkering around with past projects, and sketching out some (what I think are interesting) doodlies that may or may not get polished. 

Though over on Not Your Father's Pin-Ups  I noticed a recent call for entries to help out with the WWF. 

I saw that Ring Tailed Lemurs (which I am rather fond of) are on the list of endangered species. It made me think about a story a friend and I had begun writing together some time ago, and one of the main characters who has a biomechanical ring tailed lemur named Gidget. So it looks like I will be creating an image of said character with her lemur as a pin-up for the cause, you can look forward to seeing that WIP soon. 

And for now, it's off to pin-up.