Friday, August 5, 2011

Experimental Fridays first experiment...

Today's post is the product of my first ever Experimental Friday, wherein I eschew my usual mediums and try something completely new.  This was my first attempt to use Derwent "Inktense" ink pencils.

If you're interested in reading more about how that went (and my review of the aforementioned pencils), you can pop over to my "artistic process" blog Robriel's Atelier.

Or you can just go "Awww" and get on with what will hopefully be an epically enjoyable weekend.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Oliver the Magius

I credit my daughter for this one, or rather her rat pets Oliver and Winston who provided the inspiration for today's piece. Rats get a bad rap in the world. They're actually rather intelligent and endearing little creatures who are far braver than their size would suggest. I find that rather heroic, so I have re-cast one of Ree's rats in a more heroic light.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Inspired by Mrs. Auvoirdupois

There is a blog that I recently stumbled upon which has an advice column called "Mrs. Auvoirdupois Explains It All".  The blog is the creation of one Hanne Blank, but the advice column is "authored" by an absolutely divine character named "Mrs. Auvoirdupois."  I love it like cake and for many of the same reasons: impeccable taste, incomparable ingredients, savory, delicious with a balanced richness and flavor that lingers for a good while afterwards provoking fond reminiscences. Oh yes, it is wonderful!

I highly recommend you check it out sometime, and that you return to it often after that.

In the meantime, however, I was inspired by that column to illustrate what I think"Mrs. Auvoirdupois" might look like. I've been sort of obsessed with her and I've been working on this piece for several days now.

Pee Ess - If any of you know Hanne Blank or know how to reach her, I would LOVE to send her a link to this illustraton along with an appropriately gushy fanboy letter. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Eeesh, in very deed.

You ever have those days when you try half a dozen things and nothing seems inclined to turn out, creatively?
Yes, well...I'm having one of those days today. But that's ok. Apparently even sea lions have days like this. Luckily for me, when I'm having an off day and fall down an entire beach in front of the whole harem of sea lions (and yes, that's what they're called, I looked it up!) my day doesn't run the risk of ending up inside an Orca.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Coinín bán! White rabbit! Rabbit rabbit!

I have a lot of British friends, as it turns out, and one of the things that they've taught me is that it's good luck to say "White rabbit!" on the first day of a new month. Since my family is more on the Irish side of that configuration than the British, I've learned that "coinín bán" is the Irish equivalent. Some folks say that you have to say "rabbit, rabbit" on the first day of the month to get all of the luck directed at you. 

I've also drawn a white rabbit for today's drawing. 

I figure this way I've got all my bases covered. Bring on the lucky!! 

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Adventures in Spaaaaace...

And also in speed drawing.
Today, just to change it up a bit, I decided to try out a bit of speed drawing using Corel Painter. I have recently manifested a tendency towards getting Very Serious during art making, and that place is the opposite of the playful learning and experimenting which is kind of vital to the process. It also takes all of the fun out of things, squashes innovation and in short, is the fastest way to dry up creativity that I've ever managed to figure out.
Thus, I am always annoyed to find that I'm back there again. Fortunately, I know how to get out of that mindset pretty quickly.
In order to drop kick the inner perfectionist right in the seat of the pants, I cracked out the Wacom tablet and decided to just play for awhile, just like you do in kindergarden when they pass around the crayon bucket.
This guy was the result of about 3 hours of "don't overthink it, just draw.." speed drawing. I rather like him. Soren says he looks like me.

Me in spaaaaaaaaaace. With blue hair and space pajamas on.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Cafe Triste, Berkeley CA

I took Ree out today to do some drawing en plein air as we artist types call it. Soren had some errands to run so we settled in at the Cafe Triste in Berkeley and did a bit of life drawing. I didn't draw any single person so much as form a kind of aggregate person from bits and pieces. The sweater was from one guy, the hair from another and the attitude towards his sandwich is from still another.

I feel more comfortable drawing this way because if anyone catches me looking at them, they can't come crashing over and yell at me about how I'm drawing them -  because plainly I won't be. And yes, that scenario has actually happened to me. Never underestimate the land speed of crazy in the San Francisco Bay area.

Anyhow, it was nice to get out of the studio for a bit and spend some good artist's date time out with my daughter, a pot of Irish breakfast tea and our sketchbooks.