Thursday, June 28, 2007


Hey Everyone, I visited Sarasota last week to get inspired and hang out with John, Brent and the guys. It was incredible and I'm slowly working on getting back into an art making groove. I'm actually . . . updating my website (gasp!) I'm hoping to have it up sometime this weekend. It was so nice to see Tyler, Perry, Tina Sweep, Andrew, and several other people from last year. Lots of good times with everyone, I only wish that I could have stayed a bit longer ( a bit meaning three more weeks) so that I could have more time visit and make art :)

Here's a sketch from a plane ride to Dallas (my first business-related trip)

Another coffee shop collage

With this one, I did the drawing of my feet by holding the very end of my pen.

I'm trying to integrate more environmental images into my sketchbook rather than just obsessing about portraits and figures (though I still find the most enjoyment from drawing people)

Sorry to cut his short, I have to get ready for a few major deadlines at work tomorrow, but I hope you enjoy the work. I'll be in touch and hopefully posting more work! :)

Thursday, June 21, 2007


Lately I have been experimenting with watercolor. It's a medium that I have never really tried before. I purchased a moleskin watercolor sketchbook and decided I would do a simple still life painting from a photograph. I had to be completely unintimidated. So here is the bowl of soup:

Next I painted a sailboat from a picture I took while on my cruise:

And the other night I painted an iguana, also from a photograph from my vacation:

All in all, I find it to be a fun medium. It takes patience and a certain amount of planning and calculating which satisfies the left side of my brain.

I enjoy these little paintings, it's fun, it's easy to work from photographs, and fast (I can easily finish one in between dinner and bed-time). I actually look forward to doing these when I get home from work. This is a problem, though, because I haven't been working on "illustration" projects. This is mostly because I could sit around and come up with concepts and thumbnails, or I could bust out a whole pretty little painting in the same amount of time, (which amazingly people are offering to buy, to boot).

How can I somehow get this same excitement into my illustration work? Why does it take me months to get one "illustration" done when I can do 3 watercolors in one week? How can I change my technique or approach to make illustrations flow out of me one after another, like Penelope Dullughan? I am in a rut and I feel like something needs to change. help.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Blue Max

Well, here's my "Blue" illustration. It's based on the Prussian (later German) medal Pour le Mérite, nicknamed the Blue Max after its color and an early German World War One ace, Max Immelmann. The Blue Max could be awarded to members of all German military branches but is most recognized with the German aviators of World War One. This was largely due to the German propaganda of the period. That's why I made a German WWI propaganda poster image. For inspiration I looked to German printmaker Ludwig Hohlwein. When the German empire fell in 1918, the medal ended its service.

Mark English and Gary Kelley (among others) critiqued it. They wanted blue at the top of the poster, more values in the face, and less detail in the medal. I made corrections to the first two issues but not the third. I didn't want to erase all that detail work :/ I'm not really that thrilled with it. I learned that I really enjoy looking at images in this style, but I do not enjoy painting like this.

UPDATE: Unfortunately, the photo isn't all that great. I "fixed" the fixes and did a wash. I'm done working on this. Time to move on.

Some More sketches before I get to "Blue"

Good evening all,
Sorry to have dropped out for a bit. Here is a sketch that i did from an old National Geographic about Italy. I remember thinking that the woman was not overly attractive but at the same time she was very striking. Don't really know if i captured it but i would love to hear your thoughts. After some time away from it, i see some areas that i would like to add some colour and develop a bit more than where it is as at this point.

Here is a still life drawing while my mind wanders in and out of whatever it is every one is talking about in the other room. Some of the thoughts for the shirt (I'm getting to below) show up here in this sketch page.

The next image is a photoshop'ed collage of sketches for a shirt i just finished up. i was approached to do a T based on the scripture (1 Samuel 2:10). I was having the hardest time getting started due to the art direction that was given at the beginning. The basic gist is that they wanted to show a man anointing another with oil. I was looking at a couple view points in the style of Frank Miller (Sin City period) as far as a graphic rendering of the figures. Started working in a comic book panel to tell the story. I couldn't help but feel that it lacked the graphic & iconic presence that it needed to stand on its own. This was proving to be difficult for me. i found myself turning to birds as a metaphor. Don't want to bore you any more than i have, so i'll sign off for now.



Hey guys, so I am a finalist in that design contest I was telling you about awhile ago. :)

JJill store had the contest for a t shirt design depicting your inspiration of nature. Last year 2500 people submitted. I submitted 3, and I'm not sure which one they picked but maybe I will post the rest eventually, the iris is just my guess. Check it out though on on July 16th- 31st and vote for me! The grand prize winner gets a 4 day 3 night trip to CA for an abstract painting workshop in CA at Carmel by the Sea, near Point Lobos State Park.

Anyway remember that bird painting? its still going - here it is right now.. I'm experimenting with fabric and I am having fun. I get stuck sometimes, not knowing what to do next. I'm working on 3 others with fabric/ mixed media right now, I'm finally getting home after work and painting and it feels refreshing.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Earthy Lady

Hey Everyone,
All this talk about the Academy got me back to focusing on the basics. On this last painting I did all the steps, thumbnail, value study, color study, then final. I think it makes a difference, it was easier to go to final. I've finally started adding a signature to my work (a little overdue since I've been doing these for a while). Let me know what you think!
P.S. Thanks to Tyler for keeping all of us updated on what's going on at the academy, I think it's a little of a re-energizer for us :)

Monday, June 11, 2007

Academy - Week Two

Remember those critiques that lasted over six hours? They still happen. The James Lipton piece was my first one... the one for which I got approval and everything. The second piece (featuring Ty Cobb) was my fun piece that I did on Sunday after I finished Lipton. I just can't escape Payne (regarding the Ty Cobb portrait). I'm going to have to start avoiding looking at his work. I didn't even use his technique. I tried painting all in acrylic for once (no oil wash or colored pencil) and that's how it turned out. Gary says it's the drawing, subject matter, and colors. I love baseball, so it's going to take all my strength not to imitate his work... and I don't want to surrender that subject matter. However, I had a lot of fun painting the details in the Ty Cobb piece.

Next Assignment: Illustrate "Blue" ...since we weren't given the spelling, we played with the idea of illustrating "blew."

Hardy har har.


I finally finished my April assignment!!!!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Academy - Week Two (in Progress)

It doesn't look like we're going to get access to the lab and the large scanner... so here's a bad photo of the first assignment.

Week Two's assignment for CF Payne is a portrait for the NY Times Book Review. I'll let you all guess who this is. I'm still experimenting with cardboard as a painting/drawing surface. I think Gary Kelley is coming for next week.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Newbie's Sketches

Hello all,
I have been reading and enjoying the work you all have posted for a month or so now. I was feeling a little bad to just be posting some sketches on your blog till the State of the Blog Address, where you asked for sketches and anything that caught our fancy.
So here are some sketches that i had done a while ago ad revisited to add some colour and see what happens. Thanks Cat for the opportunity to join in on this blog! I do envy those that have been and are currently attending the Academy and look forward to hearing the assignments and to see the posted process and finals.

Taking Care of Business

Hey everyone,
While I haven't had a chance to paint in a while, I have been busy taking care of the business side of things. (Which is something that is stressful for me, but I know I have to get done). So I finally got some professional business cards made (above), got a real website which is still very much not done , and hung all my work in the coffee shop. Now that that's finally done hopefully I will spend my next days off painting!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Academy - Week One

I'm nearly done with the first assignment... Just waiting to do a wash over it. We're spread across three studios this time and have more students than last. Fortunately, there are less people in each studio, which allows us to spread out quite a bit... I'll post my final piece sometime soon. Above is just a quick sketch of my work area while I wait for the paint to dry.

Though it's like I never left, it's not the same without you all. :/

EDIT: CJ-10 (the computer lab) hasn't been open and so I can't get to a good scanner to post my final piece. It seems that Ringling is being difficult about making it available.

Friday, June 01, 2007

state of the blogion

Participation in the assignments is completely dwindling, but that's okay, because like Tyler said, it gives us ideas and goals, etc. But I want to make sure that everyone realizes that ANY artwork is accepted. Articles that you found interesting, inspirational quotes, a new artist you discovered - all is welcome here. I want this to be a source of inspiration and support. So ignore the assignments if they aren't your style, embrace them if they are. The most important thing I took from the Academy is to just DRAW every day (or as often as you can anyway). And if you want to do the assignment but don't have time, then do a doodle or a sketch or whatever just to keep the creativity spewing forth. Maybe participate in Illustration Friday assignments and post them here.

And now that i have rambled on... I want to see lots of work! Sketchbook stuff, thumbnails, paintings, figure drawings..... bring it on!

And here are some links for inspiration:

Danny Gregory - a huge inspiration for sketchbook journaling and the importance of drawing every day. Wrote a great book called The Creative License

Karin Jurick - does an amazing (but small) oil painting almost every day and sells them.

Jared Shear's "Cougar Peak-A-Boo" - this guy paints the exact same mountain scene every single day. It allows him to focus on technique and medium without having to worry about the composition, concept, bla bla bla.

Nathan Fowkes Land Sketches - beautiful, small, gouache "sketches" that are better than anything I could do in weeks.

Hope Gangloff - found her website today courtesy Illustration Friday blog, amazing sense of design... she definitely rocks those pens.

Cat Scott - Wow, that Cat Scott is really something. hehe, I started a blog a few weeks ago and I have been trying to post sketches daily, although it ends up being just a few a week. Shameless self promotion.

Woo hoo! Go bloggers go!