SCBWI has a monthly online exhibition called DRAW THIS! Here is my submission for February's prompt, "BLUSTERY". In this process series I would like to draw your attention to the second to last and the final stages to see what a difference value and lighting make. Many of us focus on only two steps in our process: 1) Drawing the image and 2) coloring in between the lines. In other words we stop at slide #3 in the series below. This reminds me of the "paint by numbers" kits you could by in craft stores. They gave you a line drawing and a set of paints. Each paint color had a number and each cell in the drawing had a corresponding number labeled inside. When you put all the right colors to the right numbers you had a colored image. When we do this in our own work it makes the coloring stage robotic and tedious. I want to encourage us to push past that to really make the coloring process fun and your own. It's those tasty highlights, reflected highlights and atmospheric lighting ( as shown in slides 4 and 5) that really put the icing on the cake!
I've been so hesitant to use a lot of line work in my pieces because a heavy use of line and outlines can make images "cartoony" and unnatural. I like the idea that my processes is more about painting and not about drawing. The truth is it's about both. When I speed through the underdrawing stage to rush to the fun color and lighting my images lack solid composition and all that detail that I like to pack in. I'm learning to make friends with drawing again :)
Here is the evolution of "CORONATION DAY". I've noticed so many of my recent compositions have been very character-based. Essentially I've only focused on a mid to close range shot of a single character, located in boring ol' front and center with minimal attention to the environment. Backgrounds are incorporated but they are after thoughts at best. Each composition looks similar and the visual monotony is hurting my portfolio. So I am switching gears to focus more on environment. As you can see in the first slide it all starts with establishing perspective.
An older piece.
This one was inspired by my usual haunt here in Tucson, Time Market.
JUST SKETCHIN' AROUND AND GETTING IN THE SPOOKY MOOD
My friends are expecting and have commissioned me for a mural in their soon-to-be nursery! This is my plan of attack on this bad boy.
- (1) Rough under-drawing
- (2) Lay down general colors
- (3) Add highlights
- (4) Darken areas for contrast
- (5) Add all the fun details.
FAWN is a story about camaraderie among the outcasts. The characters are marginalized for completely different reasons, but there is a strength of friendship that is forged with those that accept you even when society finds you unacceptable.
For me FAWN was a chance to tell a story well, visually, frame for frame. By using intimate close-ups or alienating wide shots I wanted to bring you into the character's world. I wanted you to feel what they were feeling, experience what they were experiencing.
Dialogue-less story is really interesting to me because it is much harder to to tell a story when there is no dialogue. The easiest way to progress a story is to have a character dictate what they are feeling or what they are going to do next. With a wordless comic you do not have that luxury.
I wanted the audience to feel like they were watching a film more than they were reading a comic. Reading comics can be a laborious activity. There are confusing frame directions and huge word bubbles that clutter the page. I wanted my viewer to stop "decoding" what they were looking at and instead just let it come at them.
Enough talk. I would like you to experience it for yourself. So with that I present you FAWN. Enjoy.
After a long break for christmas I'm back to work on the webcomic. Can't wait 'til it is ready to go live!
Some concept art for a pilot episode in the works. . .
Had a great opportunity to work with Director Aaron Grimes on his most recent short film project which will be involved with this fall's Adobe MAX Creativity Conference in San Diego. I can't tell you anything about it but here is a little tease! :)
Here are some of the graphite drawings I made and colored digitally this year.
My summer project was to paint my favorite Tucson scenes. Here are the ones the wife liked enough to hang around the house! Time Market, and that really weird, interesting little alleyway downtown near the Ronstadt Center. This is one paintable city, my friends.
(acrylic on wood panel - 18" X 24" & 12" X 24")
Here are some "Snap Shots" of sorts from my trip to the Sea of Cortez this last weekend. We also read John Steinbeck's Log From the Sea Of Cortez out loud to each other while basking by the waves.
It is such a magical place.
Acrylic on 6" X 8" canvas
I was the lucky winner who landed his art on the programs and mailers of the UA PRESENTS 2015-2016 lineup. UA PRESENTS is an organization that brings high-end performances to the Tucson area. My graphic designer friend, Melanie Lewis, and I collaborated on this image that hung outside Centennial Hall for the whole season.
I graduated from the University of Arizona School of Fine Arts in May of 2015. Here is the work from my exiting show. It is digital illustration mixed with photography. The concept centers around Tucson's issues of economic segregation, homelessness, and gentrification.
Thesis statement below.
Even at the expense of losing a larger audience, I still want to talk about my city and my community. It is a place worth making art about and an audience worth making art for. When I think about the world it seems too big. When I watch the news or read the paper it all looks like stories of made up places filled with actors or something. But when I stop and look at the bagger at Albertsons or the bar tender at the Shanty I think to myself “This is really happening, right now.” Being in these people’s lives feels like a huge responsibility and enough of a profound weight.
I center my images around the issues happening around me. I’m not always sure how to deal with them or how to feel about them or what I can do to change them. Sometimes I get worried about how Tucson is changing so fast, or about how some of its old evils just seem to get worse. Taking snap shots of the places I encounter and drawing into them is cathartic for me. It is a way of recording the fictions happening in my mind that buffer me from reality. I guess even the issues of a big-small town like this make me want to escape into my own made up version of it.
I always thought it'd be fun to make an illustrated coffee table book of imaginary dwellings. I've always been very jealous of architects. They get to actually walk around in their art.
So I thought I'd move some old stuff over to the new blog just for fun. Here are some from back in the day. These are graphite drawings that were digitally colored.
Better late than never, right? Thanks to all who have been waiting patiently to see more of my artwork! Your interest in my art supports me like you wouldn't believe! More to come!