Wednesday, July 24, 2013
To tell the truth, I haven't gotten to do a whole lot of finished drawing lately. Mostly, it's been a lot of back to basic with the most loathed of modern words: practice.
I'm largely self-taught, and the few art classes I took never did much to stress technique and craft. That was something I came to appreciate as I got older. It wasn't all about some bullshit notions of style and some personal vision. And though that may be true for some, to achieve the type of look that I have always wanted to achieve, it came down to technique and craft.
In the last few years, I've been proud to call a number of my peers mentors. Their advice has brought me along by leaps and bounds. That, and practice. And well, a little bit of reckless experimentation.
So while the above was just meant to be a quick throwaway piece as a part of my practice, it came out far more finished than I had hoped for.
Guess I can always count on funk.
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Monday, June 17, 2013
So abhorring most anything to come out of the card section of the local drug store, and being able to draw, I laid down this illustration on some nice watercolor paper to serve as my card. I believe it's from The Pink Panther Strikes Again, which features what is probably the best of Inspector Clouseau's training duels with his man servant, Cato (Burt Kwouk).
Friday, June 14, 2013
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Monday, June 10, 2013
Friday, June 07, 2013
I've never counted drawing architecture as one of my strong suits, but it's never too late to expand one's repertoire. The more you draw, the easier it is to draw anything. The easier it is, the quicker you can draw things that, in many respects, you could care less about but that expand the depth of your imagery. And now that I sound like some motivational art text book, I'll bid you adieu.
Wednesday, June 05, 2013
"Donar's Oak" can be found here!: http://jottify.com/works/donars-oak/
Friday, May 31, 2013
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Monday, May 27, 2013
In any event, the show had several pieces by two of my favorite pen & ink men: Charles Dana Gibson and Joseph Clement Coll. Master draughtsmen both, Gibson had a gift for beauty and elegance with a dose of humor under the veneer, and Coll...criminey...Coll wielded a pen more elegantly than most can wield a brush. In some ways, looking at their work in person could convince you to never fling ink again, but all too often, aiming for the stars helps you to fall in just the right range.
Having said all that, this piece was another inspired by classical mythology, in this case, the death of Orpheus. When the "father of all songs" failed to bring his beloved back from the Underworld, he was said to spurn all affection and was eventually ripped to pieces for it. (Although, as this is the internet, I feel compelled to mention that in some versions of the stories, he only spurned all women and turned to boys.) His body floated down the Hebrus river with his lyre still playing a mournful tune that bummed all of nature out until he emerged into the sea and washed up on the coast of Lesbos. My drawing enters the scene there, as a bather discovers the musician's remains.
Friday, May 24, 2013
On a trivial side note: Some of the most iconic story book art of all time would be the Wonderland and Looking Glass illustrations by humorist and political cartoonist John Tenniel, while all but the first of the Oz books were illustrated by one John R. Neill
Saturday, May 11, 2013
Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Monday, May 06, 2013
Friday, May 03, 2013
This piece was just returned to me after having show in two consecutive shows, one in Los Angeles and the next in Seattle, as part of two group shows.
The Seattle Show was themed around mythology, and the first idea that popped into my head was the abduction of Hercules' wife Dejanira by the centaur, Nessus. The tale has been covered by a number of painters of the past, but I felt there was a dynamism missing from some of these earlier depictions. So I decided to take a stab at it, and I'm proud to say that this was the result.
|Possibly my best forearm...|
Wednesday, May 01, 2013
It's been a longer hiatus from the blog here than I thought. Alas.
Well, I'm back today with this piece that I finished a short while back. A bit of fun, a trifle. I had never considered really pursuing this watercolor over ink drawings, but after my trainwreck piece became such a hit, I've given it a few more shots. So far, the response has been quite positive.
I certainly hope you, the viewer, enjoy this one. We'll see what else I can whip up for your eyes soon enough.
Friday, March 15, 2013
Friday, March 08, 2013
In any event, anyone who's been following the posts this week had to know who was coming last...The Big Man...Baron Vladimir Harkonnen. I would put Vladimir up there with the best in terms of villains based in excess. Though there is no mention of his disfiguring skin disease in the book, it is hard for me to see him otherwise, and was a coup for corruption shorthand by David Lynch in the film. Also, though it is perhaps one of the biggest over-the-top, sumptuous scenery chewing performances of all time, it is damn near impossible for me to imagine anyone but long-time character actor Kenneth McMillan in the role. (For something a little more low-key, I always liked McMillan as the aging safecracker in The Pope of Greenwich Village with Mickey Rourke.) The title for this entry refers to a line by legendary actor José Ferrer as the Padishah Emperor who calls for the Baron as if requesting someone deliver a three-week old piece of roadkill.
Wednesday, March 06, 2013
Our second Harkonnen is the middle child...and my personal favorite for whatever reason...Count Glossu Rabban, known as "The Beast," the tyrannical governor of the spice planet Arrakis. Though Rabban is a fairly minor character in both the book and the film, he plays a pivotal role in catalyzing many of the major and minor story arcs . In the original film, he's played by one of the all time great character actor bad guys, Paul L. Smith. Smith was the big scary dude in everything from playing Bluto in Popeye (1980) to the evil prison warden in Midnight Express (1978).
Monday, March 04, 2013
Even then, I had a weird soft spot for the bad guys, The Harkonnen. So we kick off this week with the youngest of the clan: the "golden boy" Feyd-Rautha, who, in a turn of stunt casting, was played by Sting. Nowadays he might be thought of as soft, unoffensive adult contemporary radio fodder but in the mid-80's, with that shock of red hair and a considerable feral snarl, he made for a satisfying sort of punk rock villain.
Friday, March 01, 2013
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Monday, February 25, 2013
Friday, February 22, 2013
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Friday, February 15, 2013
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
This week's second facial landscape belongs to one of the Hollywood's most recognizable character actors, Jack Elam. Elam had a fifty year career in front of the camera, and is probably best known for his appearance in a wide variety of Western films and television shows. His trademark was a wonky left eye which he was blind in that was the result of a childhood fight. As Once Upon a Time in the West was the closest Leone ever came to a Hollywood western, it would make sense why he'd hire Elam, already a 20+ year acting veteran, to play the leader of the men who meet Harmonica at the film's opening.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
One of Sergio Leone's trademarks was using faces as landscapes, and so this week, I decided to do some up-close portraits in that tradition using the three men from the opening to Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West (C'era una volta il West, 1968).
First up was Canadian actor Al Mulock. Mulock was used twice in the extreme close-up category by Leone. In the The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly (Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo, 1966), Mulock's is the first face that swims into view against a deserted landscape. Unfortunately, in Once Upon a Time, Mulock did not finish his part of the opening as he committed suicide before the shoot was over, and is covered by a double in many of the wide shots.
Friday, February 08, 2013
Wednesday, February 06, 2013
Monday, February 04, 2013
As it's the month of February, I thought that I might do a tribute to Eros, more famously known as Cupid. Though the lesser god of love to his more famous mother, Aphrodite/Venus, Eros more thoroughly made it into the iconography of the popular consciousness. So it's a week of winged archers in honor of the approach of Valentine's Day.
Friday, February 01, 2013
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Monday, January 28, 2013
Friday, January 25, 2013
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
(Warning: Salty...yet hilarious...Language)
Monday, January 21, 2013
Friday, January 18, 2013
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Monday, January 14, 2013
Wednesday, January 09, 2013
Monday, January 07, 2013
Friday, January 04, 2013
For years, my grandmother and I have had an on-going debate concerning one John Wayne v. one Clint Eastwood. I was brought up on Eastwood, my father being a big fan. I think the first one I ever saw was The Outlaw Josey Wales on ABC's Monday Night at the movies. And I've always had a soft spot for anti-heroes and movies that operated in moral grey areas. Grandma contends, and I quote, "that he [Clint] has the same look on his face, whether he's shooting a guy or kissing a girl." To which, I reply, "Grandma, John Wayne does the same thing. He's John Wayne with a different name in every movie."
Nonetheless, I cannot deny that Wayne is indeed an American icon, and one of the largest larger-than-life figures to fill the Big Screen. So as a matter of détente this Christmas, I whipped up this little tribute to the Duke for Grandma.
Wednesday, January 02, 2013
What better way to kick off the New Year than by clearing out the last of the old. I would've posted these last couple of pieces, but as they were gifts, I didn't want to risk spoiling the surprise.
After a series of sketches I did based on some of my favorite blues artists, my cousin offhandedly remarked that she would like a drawing of the eminent violinist, Jascha Heifetz. It stood to reason as she herself is a fine player of both the viola and violin. And so, I took a few and sketched one out for her.
In addition to being an enormously influential musician, Heifetz was also quite a wit and very quotable. One of my favorites: "No matter what side of an argument you're on, you always find some people on your side that you wish were on the other side."