Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Blizzard 2011

I've been toying around with the idea of changing up how I work. I feel what I have been doing is good, but it doesn't feel finished, or complete. I want more textures, but also a simpler character design for the things I draw. More suggestions and shapes of things rather than telling someone directly "this is a hand. this is a nose". Basically less literal, and more design. It'll make me think more about what I'm doing and also let my work mature. This piece, which is a whopping two panel comic I did to do some of that testing. I've also been going back and looking at a lot of the artists and graphic novels I used to enjoy so much and really studying what I like about them. Any tips or pointers would be awesome, feel free to comment below. :)

I also live in the midwest currently, and most of you know we are in a giant blizzard. Which inspired the subject matter for this. Oh and this has a lack of textures, it's mostly color and trying to add in less literal elements. Or find a balance between the literal and abstract.

Bowling and Tea

This is just a sketch dump.

Two pages from my sketchbook from bowling the other night, which I can tell I'm rusty with using an actual pencil and paper. I work primarily digitally anymore, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't also be doing analog work. Be prepared to see more of that since it needs to happen. 

Also I asked a friend the first thing that popped into their head the other night so I could just do something to practice. One of the words they stated was "gorilla" so I ran with that and out popped a spider monkey having tea with a very agitated gorilla.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Space Mom

This isn't part of any project of mine, but merely a inspired sketch after reading some old graphic novels I have laying around here. I'm not sure why I chose to make her a mom, perhaps it's due to having to take care of a tiny puppy lately. That or constantly putting away maternity clothes at my other job. Either way I thought it was a nice, sweet moment to capture in a sketch. To be honest this may be my first mom sketch ever, not counting random animals and their young. I'll draw another shopper, or a monster next. ;)

Oh, and I may be doing a site revamp tonight as well after work. Which means it won't be happening till late. I think it needs a touch up for the new year, maybe even a little make up, haha.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Clearance: Retail Observations

As I was at work the other day, ensuring the racks of clothes looked loved and cared for... I was having a disscusion with an associate about how people shop. Before I go on, let me say we are both happy with our jobs, grateful even, considering the places we are at in our respective lives. So, don't think I am complaining about any of that. I just thoroughly enjoy people watching, and retail is the perfect place to do it. As we were talking, I came up with what I considered to be an brilliant idea. I was so excited about making classification sheets for every shopper I have encountered that I started brainstorming all through work. Obviously I can't write anything down, so I had to make mental notes. So far I've come up with seven. Here is the first. With this, I officially introduce you to the series called "Clearance: Retail Observations."

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Sleepless with Sketchbook Express

If you follow me on Twitter, you'd know we recently got a new puppy. Which is nice, but there are down sides to it. As in he never wants to sleep unless it's when you don't want him too, chewing cords, having accidents. So the whole family has been a little tired lately. He is insanely cute though, so it's worth it. In the meantime I have been playing with Sketchbook Express, which is amazing. Though I'm fairly certain I'm going to have to buy the full version. It's not a very big price tag at all for what you're getting either. If I could, I'd give Autodesk a fist bump right now for their awesomeness. Since I've been really enjoying the software. Both the sketches today were done in it, just using different techniques. The kitten is done in how I usually do things, while the puppies are done differently just to test things.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Gift of Stamps

Closer look of the actual carved stamp (1 of 3) 
These are finally done, and the recipient which is my friend Kyle Ankney, knew they'd be late for his Christmas gift. Which if you don't know him you can find him on Twitter, and Youtube. These homemade stamps very much describe him as a person, since he will be the first to admit/joke that he is an Elitest, likes pretty things, and would love to pound a denied stamp on any piece of paper in metallic gold ink. He also complains that he has horrible handwriting, so I made him a set of stamps that will look the exact way he wants, every time. Plus side is he also loves them, so the gift was successful!

Denied is upside down, but here is all the respective stamps in gold ink. 

 Anyway, onto the process. Everything here is handmade except for the knobs on top. Those I just bought unfinished cabinet door handles and glued them on with E6000 glue. If you don't know what that is, it's industrial strength glue to be used on pretty much any medium. Those handles won't be going anywhere. The rubber is just the typical wood block print rubber, but the softer kind. I just cut it with a knife to the sizes I wanted, drew on my letters and then carved it with a speedball tool.

A look at the clear coat and color of the wood.
The polyurethane process, due to the current cold weather is what gave me the most trouble. I had to wet sand them a few times since it was causing bubbles. I got them out though, and what usually would only take two coats, took four. But I'm happy with how they turned out. I did not stain them before hand with anything, so the color there is the natural wood and amber of the polyurethane. I think they turned out really pretty, and despite my set backs I think they look good.

I've shown these to a few people and they actually said they'd be interested in buying their own set of custom stamps. Since I have been making plans to sell original paintings soon, would this be something you all would be interested in as well? Let me know in the comments! I really enjoyed the process and would have no problem making more of these little things. It was also fun to do something different and make me problem solve on another level.