May 31, 2010

Color plates oh me oh my.

So ages ago I made a post about a series I was working on. Well I was actually working on it (holy crap I know) and have gotten as far as the thumbnails and color plates. I'm pretty excited about them I was thinking I would do them in watercolor, but now I'm not so sure maybe oil.

Inheritance: Wild Rumpus

So this series if essencially an expression of my worries about the future. It the inheritance series because It is a conceptual representation of what we will become. This is the complimentary composition of the background of what will be a pretty brutal scene. I want all of the pieces to have the feel of a macabre storybook illustration. In this idyllistic forest scene there is a life and death struggle wages between two factions: The deer and the wolves. Both are groups of naked children in masks, their nudity is remark of innocence while the mask obscures their humanity. The wolves represent a survivalist mentality. They will do what they need to survive and ensure the security and livelihood of those they love. The wolves mean something to each other. The deer reflect a safety in numbers idealism. That to provide for the herd, although it seems to show unity in a crisis they all focus on making sure there is least and deer between them and the wolves. It is all for one and all for none.

Inheritance: Heirs of Icarus
You may remember this one from an earlier post. I jumped the gun a little and decided to start over. This is the next piece in the inheritance series and it basically speaks to our perception of success. The three young girls and clamoring to the surface by any means possible to join the birds in the sky. Below sharks are circling to drag the unlucky ones down to the depths.

Fantasy and Reality

This one isn't part of the inheritance series. Although I do have the third designed I haven't done a color plate. This one is a deeply personal piece. I won't go into why because I feel that really colors how the viewer sees it when I want them to experience it. So I'll quote what I wrote on the sketch so you can actually read my chicken scratch.
Crocodiles to many cultures represent motherhood because of the devotion they show to their young and the ferocity in which they protect them. This image is represented in two ways [mirrors of each other] The young woman is accepting the fate of the ferocity directed at her, or willing to drown seeking that protection and devotion. Either way she comes to harm.
The fantasy and reality is based on emotional reception of the viewer instead of the obvious visual translation.

Hokay so I lied

I decided to scan my collographs for the sake of procrastination on other projects. And I scanned my drypoint/engraving for better ~quality~ the lighting in my room is so bad. So bad. I'll eventually get a more color appropriate scan of my silkscreen too.

Crosby, Stills & Nash engraving on copper

So the next two are my collographs, and basically a collograph is:
'Collography' (sometimes misspelled "collagraphy") is a printmaking process in which materials are applied to a rigid substrate (such as cardboard or wood). The word is derived from the Greek word koll or kollo, meaning glue and graph, meaning the activity of drawing, which could explain the common misspelling collagraph. (Adding to the confusion, a photo-collagraph is a term to refer to any type of collatype photographic print.)

The plate can be intaglio-inked, inked with a roller or paintbrush, or some combination thereof. Ink or pigment is applied to the resulting collage, and the board is used to print onto paper or another material using either a printing press or various hand tools. The resulting print is termed a collagraph. Substances such as carborundum, acrylic texture mediums, sandpapers, string, cut card, leaves and grasses can all be used in creating the collograph plate. In some instances, leaves can be used as a source of pigment by rubbing them onto the surface of the plate.

Different tonal effects and vibrant colours can be achieved with the technique due to the depth of relief and differential inking that results from the collograph plate's highly textured surface. Collography is a very open printmaking method. Ink may be applied to the upper surfaces of the plate with a brayer for a relief print, or ink may be applied to the entire board and then removed from the upper surfaces but remaining in the spaces between objects, resulting in an intaglio print. A combination of both intaglio and relief methods may also be employed. A printing press may or may not be used.
Thanks captain wikipedia! Ps. I totally had to correct myself because I had spelled it wrong!

Decompression Collograph

This was done on cardboard with bubblewrap. I ended up having to hand press it because I almost made a huge mess of the press and that would have been the end of me.

What Else is There Collograph

This one is done with some other packing foam that is not nearly as entertaining as bubblewrap on cardboard. The swirls were a sort of fortuitous fuck up with brayer.

May 29, 2010

I wish I were this awesome. And this french.

Aurélie Neyret (Clochette) - Character Design & Illustration

(In)decent Exposure

So this summer is brings along some pretty cool things. One of which being myself and a very good friend of mine, Bobby and I are curating the show at Intel. Which is freakin awesome.
Another is that myself and another friend of mine are organizing an art show at a local coffee shop that has become my real life version of the bar from "Cheers." Basically it will be organized as such:

  • Each show will be themed (we don't want your shit you threw in a closet) for example our first one is: A visual representation or illustration of your favorite song
  • At the end of each show we will have a reception, bring as many people as possible because the more people the more successful it will seem to the owners and they'll keep it going.
  • You can sell your work, so far there is no discussion of a cut.
  • Please write a small artist statement to go with your piece/price/your name and how to contact you
  • space is limited so nothing obscenely large (try to keep it around 22x30) if you must go big or go home.
  • All canvases must have hardware, all other pieces must be framed, 2D work only
  • You will have approximately a month to get it done, each show will be hanged the day after the old one.

May 17, 2010

Critical Mass

Hookay. So finals are almost over so I was compiling my portfolio for printmaking and managed to document pretty much all of it. There isn't a coherent theme I used this class to just enjoy myself and break down some walls I was facing in my creativity.

Here is my woodblock after its first inking. Note: this will be my first and last woodblock. Mark. My. Words. This wood had split personalities so that was the inspiration for the name. I bled for this project, literally. This really drove home how important the quality of tools and materials. Cheap wood from Home Depot would not be my first choice next time. Basically it made me realize that Hokusai is a fucking pimp.

Split Personalities Woodblock, Artist proof.

Eventually I plan to print it on black paper with pink ink but I am absolute shite at registration so that could prove to be interesting. What I love about this that you would never know if I didn't tell you is that the two halves are two totally different zebra faces. BAZINGA.

Crosby, Stills, and Nash Drypoint/Engraving on copper

No. Not the singers. We're penguin fans at home and its the cup. I have affectionally dubbed this my return to whismy. In my head the conversation went a little like this: "I should do something super serious and amazing and moving and emotional and life altering...wait. No, I'll do a mother fucking three-headed jacklope." I love this one but I think it has a long way to go, I want to develop the concept a little farther. I'll probably do it on plexiglass because I'm not sure of the why on getting an expensive copper plate. Do enlighten me. But there are little crazy details on there like a flying bug and dragon vespa. Don't ask I just sat down and let it all flow. Instead of the 'haha wouldn't it be crazy if I did...' coversations I just DID IT. And this happened.

"Freddy Mercury" Silkscreen and watercolor
Lordy, this one was a nightmare. I had been planning for weeks something super awesome and detailed and color and and and and yah, for my silkscreen but in the finals rush I screwed up a stencil that had taken me Three. Hours. To create (the day before of course) and then had to figure out something that would be fun and to my aesthetic standards that I felt I could stand behind. So somehow that translated into a goldfish. I ended up not being satisfied with the plain white outline so I ended up water-coloring in the details and I'm happy with it. It will never be a masterpiece but it was certainly a learning experience.

"Fantasy and Reality" drypoint and watercolor
This one I'll give its own post because there is a lot to it. This is going to be one in series and I have alot of sketches that will accompany it. But its a start, it certainly isn't the finished one. I hate the paper I pressed on, painting on it was a pain. Also I think I'll leave some more plate tint since I think they added a certain je n'ai se quoi.

So there you have it folks a semester in a post. This is the full body of work save for some collegraphs and my linoleum that I'm still trying to do decide what to do with.

April 26, 2010

Totoro Forest Project.

I remember stumbling on this site ages ago (pre-blog era) and falling in love with the idea of seeing other peoples concepts of forest spirits. Sadly I missed the exhibition in San Francisco last year but I pre-ordered the book which won't come until December (sad) and bought a copy of Hunt & Gather.
Here are some of my favorites from the exhibition:

Jackson Sze
The Gift
Watercolor and Gouache

Katsuya Terada
My Forest Monster
Digital over pencil drawing

Mike Dutton
Sunset Sky and the Cypress of Sighs
Acrylic and Gouache

On my personal artist struggles, I've actually broken through the wall! I'm so excited, I've started three new pieces in what promises to be an interesting process. I'm combining drypoint etchings with watercolor and we'll see what I get. I'll have process pictures up and some sketchbook rambles hopefully soon!

March 6, 2010

Where the Madness happens.

Okay so my studio was absolute chaos up until about 2 days ago and went through to bring some order to what I was doing. And then I took picture to prove it (and remember what its supposed to look like)
This is kind of an over all shot of the whole studio with my wall of old paintings, sketches and (new) prints, etc.
More of a close up of where I keep all of my art books and my little painting station complete with self portrait mirror.

My clay table that my dad and I built out of a door. You can see my necessary liquid staple maker (aka tea/coffee maker)
My drafting table, this is where I do most of my drawing and painting...and yes, farmvilling. Oh and my obscene collection of glazes

Here I made myself a little inking station for my lino printing and woodblocks. The cat box is a make shift wedging table, its almost completely filled with plaster. and the other two shelves of Shit I Don't Know What To Do With.

I also have stuff that I've been working on that I'll post later tonight.

March 5, 2010


I promise to take very good care of him.

Is it my birthday??

No. But I've sure got a lot of fun things coming! After a financial kerfuffle with DB over a back ordered item (they were actually very nice and very English speaking) I exchanged that money over to buy myself one of these:

a #6 to be exact.

As well as triumphantly winning a lot of 75 winsor newton artist grade tubes on ebay (my new crack holy shit) at approx $2.00 a tube, I'm feeling quite smug.
I'm still waiting on...
a new bag
and 4 books

I have 40 new colors to arrange in a palette with 20 wells. I can't stand the pressure! I means I have to be selective and it breaks my heart.

oh. OH. AND This site is FANTASTIC

I will hopefully awe you tomorrow with pictures of my productivity

Ear:worm [Royskopp // What Else is There]

February 19, 2010

Tick Tock

At this point the clock is ticking and going fast, and I'm scrambling in the midnight hours to complete even 5 pieces for the upcoming show. I hate when I get inspiration at THE last minute and I have no time to take the time that I want to and that the idea deserves.
For Example:
I've just started a watercolor triptych that represents my fear of what the future brings for our society. Its a lot of nekkid kids killing each other, and at the moment I haven't finessed my explanation but believe me it WILL make sense...eventually. But anyways the pieces are highly detailed with a lot of components and again kids. Did you know that kids are a fucking pain in the ass to draw? My first attempt looked like a scary angry midget. The proportions are driving me insane and then add facial expressions, and hands and I will be working on this piece for a long time.

My only saving grace will be my prints, once I get a ~good~ print of my octi and complete the next several ideas I have I'll be gold.

But to satisfy your curious eyes, here are some pics of my piece so far.

"Inheritance I: Heirs of Icarus"

Part of my problem at the moment is when things are bad the state of my room shows it. Right now it looks like a war zone, but I can't stop thinking about that I don't have time but thats a lie. Today will be a day that I take a break from the worry and just get my act together. Lord help me.

February 16, 2010

Time to Use BOTH Hands

"Sea Goddess"

I decided that I would give printmaking another shot this semester and here is the fruit of my labor. Its 18"x24" (go big or go home right?) and I never quite considered the logistics of it all until I was confronted by The Biggest Brayer I Have Ever Seen. It was quite intimidating. Anyways this is the first artist proof I did. I used Daniel Smiths water soluble ink and it was recommended that I try using the oil based one for a more solid color. Though at this point I'm up in the air because the clean up for that beast was bad enough with just water let alone turp. I think I would end up killing us all. Either way I'm pleased as punch save for some minor cut details with the plate itself and I plan on doing a couple more runs to try to get the ink more even (first time folks). But I think in the future I'll stick with 9x12's

February 13, 2010

The one reason that Wordpress can suck it.

No. Custom. Layouts.

well thats a lie. But you have to pay for the changes you make.

So Blogspot, it appears we are stuck together until 1. I get my own domain 2. database management ceases to elude me.