Sunday, May 30, 2010

the time of year when a young man's fancy turns to Dr. Sketchy's

hey team,
last night was Dr Sketchy's Anti-Art School at the Sazerac Lounge. I have told you about this before, haven't I?
This time the models were a troupe of ladies from Ohio called Viva Valezz & the Velvet Hearts.

I got two of my contest suggestions drawn from the hat. We got to "draw the model as an extra head on Mt. Rushmore" and "draw the model as Sarah Palin."
I won the Sarah Palin category. I got a signed poster from the girls and a pass to come to the next Dr Sketchy's for free.
At first I thought, I shouldn't post the Sarah Palin images because they are of questionable taste and I really don't need the hate mail from the crazy teabag people, but then I thought "who am I kidding? nobody reads my blog!"
So here they are!

that last one would be Sarah Palin's campaign poster if she ran in 2012. It has everything she has to contribute to the world: boobs, Jesus pandering, and a baby with Down's syndrome.
And now here is a disingenuous picture of me winning:

Thursday, May 27, 2010

color inspiration of the season

There is so much exquisite color going on outside in my mom's garden right now. These ickle little photos from my outdated digital camera cannot do it justice. They must be painted, and in oil. How might I achieve these sublime colors?

This iris, in real life, has the most beautiful soft, mauve-orange. I don't believe I have ever mixed such a thing. If I were to attempt it, I think this is how I would start:

I never use purple out of a tube in my palette. It doesn't work for me. To accomplish the hue in this iris I believe I would begin by mixing a red-purple of my own, from alizarin crimson and ultramarine. Then I would mix its compliment, a desaturated orange, from yellow ochre and burnt sienna. I would tone the purple with the desaturated orange, then add white until it was the appropriate value. I would maintain separate piles of similar, but purple leaning and orange leaning versions to paint with.

this iris is especially lovely. As most of you well know, my favorite color is burgundy. The color of red wine. This iris appears to be a warmer variant of burgundy. I believe this color could be achieved through a 50/50 blend of alizarin crimson and burnt sienna. I might add a skosh of indigo or ultramarine to cool it down, and then a wee bit of white to bring the value up. Also important to note, that if I were to paint this Iris, that spot of yellow would be crucial. Color is always, at the end of the day, a game of opposites. It is the yellow that plays opposition that really makes the warm burgundy sing.

Copper-colored ferns. Terrible photo. I apologize for that.

This one is marginally better:

For this I would start by busting out the really expensive, poisonous shit: cadmium red. The cad red would be toned down with sap green until it reached that near neautral copper look, then add white to bring it up. A thought on possible experimentation: the green, when it shines through, appears to be yellower than my sap green straight out the tube. I do happen to have a tube of GOLD (which I love) and I might throw a spot of that into this as well.

Ah yes. The Japanese Painted Fern. WHAT ARE YOU??? This plant has qualities of violet and mint green. The violet appears to be a red leaning purple that has been massively desaturated but kept at low key value. The mint green would probably start out coming from that tube of Viridian green that I despise and almost never use. It would be toned (but with what!?!?) and have a lot of white added to it. I observed a strange phenomenon in mixing color long ago that I had never seen a use for until now. In color theory, we are taught that mixing compliments produces neutrals. Red and green are eachothers compliments. Once, when I tried to tone down alizarin crimson with some of that viridian green that I despise and almost never use, the result was not a neutral, but a curious purple. THAT CURIOUS PURPLE COULD BE PERFECT FOR THIS FERN!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Writing Gig

Even though in the headline of this blog I call myself "writer & illustrator," I use this forum almost exclusively as a sketchblog. Well, I figure it's high time I started earning that writer title I gave myself. You may remember that a few months back I contributed some web content on Joanna Newsom for Revue West Michigan. Well last week Deftones were in town and I lobbied for the gig to cover them, because I am quite fond of those lads. If you aren't familiar with them, you should look them up. They are quite outstanding. I would have liked to have weaseled my editor into posting an illustration of mine alongside the review, but I didn't have any time for art this week. You can see the show review that I did here.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

My Rug for Hagopian

hey team
remember that time I told you that I won the Hagopian rug design competition? At the time I didn't have access to a copy of the winning rug design because I hadn't bothered to scan it in before submitting it (what can I say? it was a rush job).
Well the finished, executed rug went on display at the opening of the Student Exhibition .
I am thrilled with how it turned out.
That's me talking with Suzanne Hagopian of Hagopian World of Rugs, the competition's sponsor. She told me that while ordinarily the competition rugs are produced as one-of-a-kinds, my design is currently being considered for inclusion in an upcoming line, in which case it would be mass-produced. Should that come to pass, I will advise of how to purchase one of your very own.

that's me and my rug.

Monday, May 17, 2010

R.I.P. Agent Skully

Alas, Agent Skully, we barely knew ye.

It seemed a crying shame to throw away my anatomy model. After all, I slaved over this thing for an entire semester back in second year, and the anatomy model is one of those things that we all had to do. It is a shared experience that binds all of us CCS illustration weenies together forever. I didn't want to throw it away. In my mind I pictured my children's children's children admiring it and smiling as they think on the stories I will tell them about the Amazing Clark. He was an especially well done anatomy model, in my own humble estimation. Albeit, my attempt at an elegant contrapposto resulted in an anatomy model who appears to be shrugging his shoulders and saying "where's the party at?"

In the end, today as I begin my escape from the Motor City, the blessed Exodus I have waited so long for, there simply is no room for Agent Skully in my car. He's a fragile thing, and probably wouldn't survive the drive anyway. He can't be donated because he already has a broken hand. So I left him in one of the dumpsters . . . unfortunately certain cargo had to be jettisoned if I was ever going to make it back to that glorious jewel on the river .

So thanks for the good times, Agent Skully. Good luck and God Bless.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Classic Hoobler

As you may know, Jessica Newberry and I are in an ultra-exclusive book club. It consists of just the two of us. We are currently reading The Party and Other Stories by Anton Chekhov.
During the school year, Jessica and I would discuss the current book selection in studio.
But sometimes we would get distracted and instead of talking about the book, we would end up inserting Chris Hoobler's name into the titles of classic works of literature.
For some reason, Chris didn't find this amusing, which I will never understand.
Here are a few of the new classics we came up with.
I am considering actually writing them, by inserting the character of Chris Hoobler into the existing content, a la Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

Monday, May 10, 2010

meet the interns!

there is so much hard work that goes into the student exhibition.

that's why I have freshmen to assist me.

These are the interns. Brian Oscar, Illustration class of 2013, and Ken Emmons, Transportation Design class of 2013.

The lads helped build my frames, with all of the sanding and grouting and gluing and nailing and painting and whatnot. Then they helped hang my senior wall (which will be unveiled on Thursday after the Graduation ceremony, and which you can see at the Exhibition Opening)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

senior review materials

today at 1:30, fate is sealed. I must show everything I have done this year in a digitally projected presentation. The review panel doesn't want to see originals, although after pestering Gil said I could bring one physical painting in if I insisted.
And I do insist.
In addition to my digital presentation and my one painting, I am also bringing them these takeaways that I made with my business card and promotional postcard outfitted in an origami envelope. I also printed out the process portfolio that Lora Parlove forced us to make and had it spiralbound. I will also be showing that at the review.
Wish me luck!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The 1,000 Crane Wedding Dress

As you may recall, I had mentioned before that I was working on a project for which I would be recycling the linocut peace cranes that I had originally carved for the portrait that I did of my buddy, graphic design innovator Kikko Paradela.
Well, it is now finished.
I give to you, ladies and gentlemen, The 1,000 Crane Wedding Dress.
There is a concept behind this. For those of you who may be familiar with the traditions associated with the origami peace cranes, supposedly folding 1,000 peace cranes can bring you anything ranging from a specific wish, to general health and prosperity, depending upon whom you ask. On occasion the families of young Japanese couples will fold 1,000 cranes as a wedding gift to hopefully bring blessings upon their marriage.
That got me thinking, why not just make a wedding dress out of 1,000 white paper cranes entirely?
That was the thinking behind this piece. Also, I wanted to work in an unconventional format, so I chose to paint this tightly cropped, extremely narrow vertical panel.
Here is a detail of the face:
and a detail of some of the crane collage:

At the student exhibition I intend to hang this piece and the Kikko portrait at opposite ends of my wall, so there will be some crane tie-in unifying the whole show.
The dimensions of this piece are 12 x 48 inches. Just think how perfectly a lovely narrow image like that could hang in your home . . . I guess what I'm trying to say is that this piece will for def sure be for sale at the student exhibition and Lord knows I need the $ for New York.