Feb 27, 2015

Feb 26, 2015

...Over the Grey

Black Lab Studies

I asked my Dad if her wanted an animal painting and he chose a black lab. I have to admit....it was hard to paint in all black. But that is why I am doing these studies, to learn! 

Meanwhile, I have a new woodland painting on my website here.

Feb 17, 2015

A Rose by any Other Name...

"A rose by any other name would taste just as sweet."
-if deer read Shakespear

 I've been doing some deer studies, they are challenging...their proportions have to be fairly accurate or they look really weird so my normal whimsy is quelled a bit.

Neighborhood Walk

Feb 16, 2015

Tilikum Crossing


...a rough sketch I made while waiting for Don at lunch on the Eastbank Esplanade. I especially avoid architecture so I was pretty pleased with myself for making any attempt.

Feb 15, 2015

Coffee Shop Studies

When I was in school I sketched in coffee shops all the time because we had to fill so many pages a week in our sketchbooks to get credit for the class. It was something that I resented as much as I appreciated. It was obvious the quota was making me a better artist and observer. It was also really enjoyable when I stopped trying to make nice pictures. The hard part is letting go of wanting to make nice pictures. I do not really enjoy perspective and proportion that much, mostly because I am not that good at it and it makes my head hurt. Although, when I am making an illustration I suddenly don't hate it, the desire to tell a story makes it more a process of invention than a struggle.

I've been missing sketching lately. There are so many things I want to learn to draw, or things I know would come in handy in future illustrations. Pretty much anything I encounter in life would be a worthy subject. 

These are from Ford Food and Drink, not that anyone would recognize themselves in these loose studies. It felt good to challenge myself.

Feb 12, 2015

Practicing Raccoons (and spelling.)

Did I spell mammals wrong twice in this illustration? Did I also leave an E out of livelihood? Did I perhaps forget some punctuation?
Why yes I did. Luckily I was just practicing.
"One mammal's trash is another mammal's livelihood"

Feb 9, 2015

Zines and Dreams

I meant to get to the library half an hour early to have lunch before the Zinesters Talking Publishing event at the downtown library. Somehow I arrived 80 minutes early. I had a nice walk through town, the farmer's market and the park blocks. It's surreal to arrive here from Corvallis and immediately find produce stands from Corvallis. As if I am being followed. It's raining now. I am in my car getting over the parking meter hullabaloo I created by being early and not realizing it. I either have to buy a whole new ticket for two hours before the talk or leave in the middle of the talk to get a new spot for one hour. Four dollars is a surprisingly large sum right now.

Anyway, it's beautiful here. In the park blocks I reminisced about my twenties when I thought it would be a dream come true to live by the park in an old brick building. I have lived in a couple brick apartment buildings since then. Now I want to be near a meadow or a forest...at least away from busy streets, Old urban brickers still appeal to me which I see as a result of watching a lot of Sesame Street growing up.

The talk was inspiring. Everyone reiterated this thing I've been learning which is that if you do what you love and get involved in the community things happen and you find yourself with a career that makes use of your talents and passions.

The talk also showed me that I haven't been interested in zines for the wrong reason. I always wanted to be inspired by zines but I would browse through a few of them and get bored. When I look deeper I see that the problem lies in a societal value that things are only worthwhile if they generate revenue or are applauded by a mass audience or at least some "authorities" in the field. For as anti-mono-culture as I think I am it is surprising and uncomfortable to learn that I've been tied up with the such commercial priorities.

The speakers clued me in to the real benefits of zines. They give voice to people who didn't feel they had one, they connect people who thought they were alone, they have been part of the movement that has made a rather large space in the mono-culture for difference to be recognized and celebrated. It seems magical that one talk has given me the opportunity to slip out from under commercial values, to create more, explore more, and share more...to revise my dreams according to my values instead of the dreams I accumulated watching TV. It gives me hope that we can create positive change in the same way we can create positive careers...by doing what we love and getting involved in the community.