Monday, April 05, 2010

Apr 05 - Apr 11

Ok, here's the new deal - me 'n G are going to post something every day on our blogs! Even if it's only two sentences! So we are in a habit, in a groove, and on a roll. Ready.....GO!

I'm posting mine in week-long chunks. Today's monday, and one week of classes under my belt. For the most part (ever since I went in for some tutoring with math), everything is great and as it should be (meltdowns, epiphanies, the works).

Since our drawing instructor let us out of class early (AGAIN) (you bet I said something......dude you gotta save some love for your lowly beginning drawing class at the end of the day!!), I asked for an assignment (I am not an ass-kisser!). I. Am. Here. To. Learn.

He told me to draw a paper cup. Keeping in mind the stuff we learned in class: figure/ground, value, composition. Okay. Okay okay okay. Sigh........my challenge is more about how to liven it up. The inimitable Walt Stanchfield (rest his soul), who is a philosopher and was an animator at Disney, said that when you draw even something static and 'lifeless' (Still Life!), find the gesture -- the essence -- the story of the thing.

Here is what I tried:

Graphite



Charcoal:




Ho hum.

So then I broke the format and drew this big ass cup:


I think all these look much cooler as photos than the original drawings.

I bought a tube today, to transport my rolled-up two-dimensional art in (as a bike rider, these things are high on the list of considerations - keep it un-crumpled, and dry). It features a shoulder strap, to sling it over your, uh, shoulder. Stopped by a friend's on the way home and she said, "It looks like a quiver." You know, for arrows? Bad asssss!! Robin Hood!

Hey, my name is in print too: a write-up in the local Eugene Weekly, as I'm a participating artist at MECCA! The exhibit features artists who have made or altered books. The german-english dictionary I illustrated was well-received and I was blown away. I met many very cool, talented women at the opening on friday.

Okay, time to sign off and go review my home-made math flashcards. Test on wednesday!

------------------------

Tuesday!

I love these, by Frank Espinoza (illustrations for The Killing Girl)



Loose, fluid, exciting. Hierarchy of shape, repetition of shape, diagonals, and opposing diagonals (strong stuff). Yes, I'm learning stuff from my Basic Drawing class! And a strong sense of Closure, or, where the shapes meet the edge of the picture plane (and run off). Not to mention color. But that's next Term.

Drawing class was great today - I really absorbed what was going on, which, in my hormonally whacked-out state, is an awesome thing! I'll try to remember and bring my camera to class next time and take a picture of what I drew today. Strong positive regard for my piece, which I must admit felt really good. Especially since I really don't like most of what I'm doing art-wise lately.

Design class - my brain was off the hook. We're doing geometric designs, playing with figure/ground and positive/negative space. Perfectly complimentary to the Drawing class -- and it's a curious mix for my soupy brain because it mixes left and right brain work (at least it does for me). So I'm trying to let my hemispheres give and take. They're slow to co-operate, to tell you the truth.


Mostly finished, with a few 'maybes' in there. And I want to do at least one more inked design. It is impossible for me to not compare what I'm doing with the exciting designs I see other (YOUNGER) people doing. So I'll try to get off my own back about it, fer chrissakes.

Sat in the cafeteria before classes and sketched a bit, which felt good (and frustrating, and good, and frustrating.....the usual!). The guy sitting next to me was eating two big juicy slices of chicken garlic pizza which smelled so damn good. For a split second I seriously thought I would ditch being a vegan who rarely eats wheat.

Gawd. Now it's 11pm. Already?! Going to watch Art21, a series on DVD, that I picked up at the campus library. Schweet!

p.s. Drawing instructor Grosowsky liked my homework studies well enough and didn't even glance at my tongue-in-cheek big-ass cup over the head rendering. He's not really into graphic novels either. But, he's enthusiastic about setting up some independent study for me so that I can work towards graphic novel stuff.

Also, there were free sketchbooks left over from last term's students who abandoned half-finished journals. Snag and score! Hot damn.....I can't believe that shit.

_____________

Wednesday

This morning I listened to the Illustration Party Time podcast by Joshua Kemble and Kevin Cross while I drew out another design for Basic Design class. I think it's too busy, but I like the concept. The podcast was really informative and fun to listen to, btw. Check 'em out if you've a fancy.


Wednesday Eve

Well I sat for an hour fiddling with geometric shapes and arrangements, and nothing really came of it. Okay hang on: I know what didn't work, so that's something. I wanted to accomplish a finished design, and I did not. It's like my brain is in park, or reverse even. WTF?!

I thought that the Structure in academia would provide me with what I needed which is.....what? Motivation to do shit; moreover, to do really cool shit. So is all this not-cool-shit going to turn into something else one of these days? I really hope so. I really do.

Played some more with charcoal.....this time, some vine charcoal in there. I'd like to learn how to really work that, and build up texture and shape and volume. I've seen some really cool shit out there!

Decided that I like the unfinished sketchy stuff at the top.

I think in class yesterday, Mr. G told us how to make it pop, which is to place the black against the white. So, the source of light is from the right. Leave the object completely white on that side, but surround the shape on that side with black. And then, on the left for the background, make it really light.....so that the dark side of the object (which you make, uh, really dark) pops there. My brain says yeah but the shadow is cast on the left, it's dark on the left in the background!

Good night. My left and right brain keep flipping each other off.

_______
Thursday Apr 08

whoooah I woke up super early this morning, at half-past six. My brain wouldn't go back to sleep, so the rest of me woke up with it. "Woke up", well, we 'rose up' out of bed but didn't 'wake up' until around 2:30 this afternoon. BUT, I worked out a design this morning that I'm much more excited about. I'll continue drafting and inking it over the weekend, ready to hand in next tuesday. YAY.

(click for biggie)

Was pretty fun in class working on it. I always wondered how in the hell 20-somethings know all the songs I grew up with in the 80s on the radio....they play that shit on the radio now, that's why! It's what we listened to while we all transferred our designs to larger formats for the final, and inked 'em up. I really liked chatting with my classmates and getting to know them, hearing their stories.

When a Michael Jackson song popped in, I relayed how when the video for Thriller came out, I was in Jr. High living in Maine. No MTV. But, a midnight show called Night Flight, with videos. It was a school night, so I went to bed early, set the alarm for 12 o'clock, and waited breathlessly for the premier (and I was not disappointed). Deirdre's story was fucking hilarious - she was five, and adored Michael Jackson. She watched the video and was terrified. So terrified, in fact, that she tried to squish herself under the sofa and her head got stuck!! No shit! Funny right!

Feel like I got my mojo back today, which is fanFUCKINGtastic. Drawing class was great. I love learning this stuff. It's so fun to be in a classroom. Mr. G walks around talking while we draw and he repeats things seventy-sixteen times - which is awesome, because repetition is key, baby!

Learning about hierarchy of shapes, creating the focal point, hard edges and when you use those, the other bits can be diffused and looser......creating that focal point results in less work in other places (that sounds bad, it's not). Really learning how to feed the eye some candy now!

Here's tuesday's effort:





Here's from today:




Everyone in the class kicks ass! I am so inspired! And I'm really enjoying being a first-year art student, along with everyone else. I'm right where I should be.

After classes I went to the Jordan Schnitzer (art museum on campus, downtown UofO campus, not LCC) for some queer film festival-ing. Pretty interesting stuff! The last one, a film made in 1965 called Flaming Creatures was disturbing. So much so that I just turned to my sketchbook. That. Was. Fun.

I totally dig the sketchbook pages. I felt loosened up, and really jazzed that I was expressing the gestures so immediately and more accurately. Practice! It really does make a difference! I was feeling really down for a long time, not seeing any real progress or feeling as though I was even learning anything. I can honestly say that I (at least today!) am really into the process of it, and loving every minute of it (Def Lepard! Rock on!)

________

Hey! It's friday! What does that mean to you?

For me, it means catching up: on sleep, on everythang (no classes today). And, I've been chipping away with a will, lemme tellya. At the last minute, I decided to submit a piece to the college's Student Juried Art Show, with an elective to be included in the Salon de Refuses if my watercolor isn't selected for The Show. I did this last year:




Yeah.......really like this one. Hey maybe I think it might be time to do another.

Agh! It's 10:30! I want to do some gesture drawings before I totally fade out. But first, here's my finished project for Basic Design. It's on the requisite 11" x 14" slice of paper. I think it would be stronger if I focused on just one or two orbs. It's interesting to look at, at least I think so, but there's too much competition. Thank god for the white space, where your eyes can go to rest for a spell before jumping back into all that geometric jargon!



I think what I'll do is take photos of portions of the picture, at high res (no scanner, thus the photos), print them out and photocopy. Then I can cut the photocopies up and rearrange stuff, or zoom in or out, and make another rendition, and copy that out. Include it with the final on tuesday.

Went to a fuh-fuh-fuh-FABulous opening tonight at Maude Kerns: Drawn to Tell: Illustration Invitational 2010. Ten Oregon illustrators under one roof. Shiver me timbers! I have to admit also that it's fun to know a bit about how to articulate why I respond to a piece, and understand why a piece works (or doesn't).

________________

Saturday. Already?! Homahgod.

Glorious day today:

Lessee.......fridge took a dump this morning*, hauled everything out, called landlady J, tore outta here for figure drawing. Sunny! Drew for hours. AWESOME model. She's been doing it for fifteen years, she said! whoah. In SF they pay more than double what they pay here (it's a mere ten-fifty an hour).



Then I moseyed over to the campus' art museum and spent more hours gawking at everything. Great exhibit by kids in the area, on superheros. Charming drawings, so honest, and funny, and I am amazed by their vocabulary too. There was a big bit by two pretty famous dudes, one Danish one American, photographers who spent a total of six years in Amazonia. Pretty cool. I sketched a lot of those photos, and folks wandering around.

The real zinger for me was the Art of Books room. By then I was kinda toast after so much visual information, drawing, stimulation etc; I may go back to revisit the books. Sketchbooks by a Scottish fellow and also an English gent, dating to the late 19th century -- their travels, and in particular, India and Tibet. The sketchbooks are small, some in ink, some in graphite only, some with colors. I was just about in tears. Looking at those marks on paper made by the hands of men so long ago, but just like...well, like it was yesterday. So intimate. So beautiful!

And then, there were block prints from Japan, fold-out and pop-up books (whimsy!? in Japan?! I don't really equate that with Japanese culture!)......intricate, detailed, rhythmic. Reminded me of the time I spent studying Japanese, some familiar words, and a resurgence of interest on my part

WHOAH HOLY it's suddenly raining amazing amount of water with a ferocity unexpected! Earlier it was so gentle. Dam(n)!!

.....a resurgence of interest in all things Japanese. This evening I was sorting through material for collages and assignments for Design class and came across a magazine I picked up in a free box last year. It's a Japanese magazine for learning the language and pop culture, with comics - it's really super cool, I forgot I had it! I aim to include the Japanese chapter in one of my Art History classes. I also wanna make some books!

o yasumi nasai, tomodachi
(good night friends!)

*fridge is fixed!
______________________

Sunday, less the sun, but still warm(ish)


I drew a couple things (things being humans, and the human being a woman) I like. I like 'em because there is some attitude, and potential for more, and I finally relaxed into looking and drawing.

Gesture, after a half hour of gesturing:



Fifteen (?) minute studies:




Now I am of (at least) two minds when it comes to drawing women. Firstly, when all the boobies are jutting out and the spine is arched to push them further, I feel annoyed. Sex object. Blaaaaaah. Or anything like that sex object junk blaaaaaaah. Okay, secondly, pinups and superhero chicks can be really fun to draw, which is contrary to my initial blaaaaaaaaaah. Pinups and heroines are attitudinal, jaunty, and display avid contropposto which is always fun to draw!! I liked drawing from the photos this morning because of the jut and the jaunt. So I'm thinking, maybe I'll look for online action poses featuring women.

I found one! The model is so stiff though!! She's not really swinging that katana, she's holding it away from her body as though she doesn't know what to do with it!

So then I thought, why not do some film stills from, like......KILL BILL! Excellent idea! I'm on it!

7 comments:

Caio Fernandes said...

great !! everything is great .
really .
you have my suport for everything :D hahah!!

V.K. said...

thank you sooo much Caio - sorry I am not keeping up with your world over there, it really is my intention!! hope you're doing great too :-D

nofantosastro said...

cool!!!

E. said...

Hi!
My name is Elisa, I come from Italy!!!
I ve started a blog in order to write my thesis. Its topic is Laerning English with a blog. I will need a lot of interaction and comments and help!

If you have time and you want to help me....you're welcome!! THANK you!!!!!!

Ely

http://elyproject.blogspot.com/

ElizabethLB said...

I love your blog! I've just started my own and posted a picture of my GCSE coursework but i don't think it's nearly as good as yours! if you could follow me, that would be great, i'm already following you :)
Elizabeth.

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