batch update: illustration studio

Assignment: create a character model sheet, like people do for animation but not necessarily in an animation style. I enjoyed drawing this dog enough I think I might use her for an upcoming “design a children’s book” assigment in the same class.

Assignment: create a WPA-style poster about the contemporary issue of our choice.

Assignment: create an illustration inspired in some way by Norman Rockwell.

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batch update: rendering techniques for theatre

Greyscale marker. This is a gallery at the Art Institute of Chicago; I remember it mainly because an art history professor took us through it last year and said “hey, by the way, if you bring someone here on a date this is a nice dark private place for you to go!”

My friend Angie, drawn from life during class.

Watercolor rendering, copied from a White House, Black Market magazine ad–the ad was in black and white, and I chose a color on my own.

India ink, wash and dip pen, copied from another ink drawing I sadly don’t know the origins of. The assigment was just to let us get a handle on using ink.

Self-portrait.

the scottish play

I just got a whole heap of work back in both my drawing classes, so I’m going to make a couple of big batch posts tonight to get all those things up, but these are light renderings based on Rupert Goold’s Macbeth, which was the production that made me decide to go to art school. So they’re a wee bit special.

illustration introduction- dragon and caricature

Two projects from my Illustration Introduction studio! The first was a quick in-class assignment: we had to draw a dragon sitting in a Starbucks reading Harry Potter, and it had to relate to one of the seven deadly sins somehow. Mine was supposed to be Pride.

And the first major project, also due yesterday, was a caricature of a famous celebrity. There is definitely a good bit of room for improvement in some places here, but my professor said it reminded him of a New Yorker cartoon kind of, so I am all aflutter anyway.

Spring 2011: Figure Drawing (NSFW)

Live drawing from models. We produced somewhere between 5-7 drawings each week, twice during the semester we chose our 3-4 best and turned them in, and the week before last we turned in one more. The object here was to draw accurately and effectively, not to produce finished work, so there really isn’t much to say about these; I’m just going to post the ones I turned in.

These are all soft pencil on 18×24 drawing paper.

Batch 1

Batch 2

Batch 3

I gotta say– this felt like pulling teeth the entire semester and like I hadn’t gotten a jot better. But looking at these all in succession, damn that is some progress there, and I wish I could go on working at it for another fifteen months. I could use another month, at the very least, just learning to draw heads and hands that aren’t entirely terrible.

Spring 2011: Costume Design

The results of my three projects in Costume Design this semester.

The first was, predictably, Oedipus Rex.


It’s a long time since these were due, so I can’t really think of much to say about them. Some of the figures turned out all right, and the designs in general turned out pretty solid in my and my professor’s opinion’s both.

The second project, which sent me into utter fits, was Hedda Gabler.

Considering I’ve really never done much in collage before, I think these turned out spectacularly well. Professor suggested a grey ink or paint wash behind the figures to make them stand out from the background better, and I agree; she also wished Hedda’s two dresses were less similar in color scheme.

After Hedda we only had two weeks of school left, so the last project was tiny; we just had to pick an existing TV show, invent an episode for it, and design four costumes for that episode. I decided to do mirrorverse Farscape.

Pretty good marker renderings, I think! I don’t know what else to say about these, except that Aeryn is my favorite by like a mile.

sketchbook 11-17: seurat, observation, michelangelo

Hey so I may be terrible at getting things posted, but I am not behind on my sketchbook, I swear! (Well, not very.) So I will go on and upload things for the next few days until I am caught up on both– it’ll just mean an extra trip or two to the Art Institute.

Also– we produce a huge volume of drawings in my Figure Drawing class and are expected to pick out the three or four best every few weeks to turn in for actual grading! And this week is the first week we’re doing that, so I will post the ones I actually end up turning in, how’s that, Internet?

Anyway, my last Seurat copy. Somehow the stippling turned out terrible– nowhere near as good as the other two, possibly because I actually did this on the tail of a bunch of other stuff and my leg was cramping– but the hair looks pretty good. Why is this my life.

Three pages of observation– one from group therapy, two from a meeting. I think I want to try drawing at group again this week– it’s a tiny group but no one minds, and even from this you can tell that everyone’s body language is so distinctive.

And from the meeting: I don’t know why everyone moved around so much more in a meeting than in therapy, but I had to draw a lot faster. Weirdly, my favorite is the girl with the glasses in the lower left of the second page– it’s the loosest scribbliest thing ever, but damn if it doesn’t look just like her.

And three Michelangelo copies. They aren’t very thorough copies, because I like to limit myself to 30-40 minutes on a copy (more like an hour for the Seurats, because stippling is such a pain in the ass). Which I totally do not regulate by watching Star Trek and doing one drawing an episode, and you will never prove that I do– anyway, I thought Michelangelo would be nice and straightforward and useful to copy, but it turns out unsurprisingly that he is INTIMIDATING AS FUCK. In retrospect these aren’t that bad, especially the first, but if they all look kind of like I gave up mid-drawing I’m sorry to say it’s because I did. There is so much detail in there, and all the forms are so emphatically modeled, that it’s really difficult to simplify the figure and sort out which lines and shadows are really important to making a recognizable figure vs. which are Michelangelo being enthusiastic about detail.

I almost wish I’d saved the links to these images; I’d like to try them again when I’m feeling more confident.

sketchbook 8-10: observation, copying seurat

I had never done IRL observational drawing of people before. That shit is hard. People on my Google Reader are always posting these really effective, detailed little sketches of strangers around them, and I have no idea how you can produce a drawing that effective in the like five seconds before your subject stands up and wanders away. I know, I know, it’s a practice thing.

In other news: stippling. The original drawings I copied weren’t stippled, but they were Seurat, and done on heavily textured paper, so I thought I might as well. Thus: adventures in markmaking.

It took me until like halfway through the first drawing to get really tired of stippling. The effect is really great when it works (and I do like this one a lot!)

By the time I had made serious progress on this second, I kind of wanted to throw out every drawing implement I own that has a point. Give me charcoal, oh my god, and brushes and ink and stuff I can smear everywhere. Hence the background on this one, which . . . self, when will you learn that deliberately varying the markmaking in a drawing never looks nearly as awesome as you think it will?

There is a third drawing waiting to be copied, but I cannot cope with it right now. Too many dots. o_o It will sit open in a tab, making me guilty, until I deal with it over the weekend or something.

sketchbook 5-7: cycladic female figure

Not bad work, these; I could pick them apart some but the blizzard here is still fucking up public transit and it took me three times longer to get home than I expected and I am cranky and tired. You can see the actual statue here.

sketchbook 2-4: copying Degas drawings

I’m taking Figure Drawing this semester, and one of the requirements is filling a hundred pages of a 9×12 sketchbook during the semester. There’s no requirement about what I have to do with it, but I’m trying to make it all related to drawing people anyway. 3 drawings a week of a statue from the Art Institute, three copies of a famous artist’s work, and 3-4 pages of observational drawing, just sitting around watching people. Chicago has been kind of snowed in this week, so no chance for observational drawing, but have copies of three Degas figure drawings to start off with. (Page 1 was notes from my first day of class.)

The only conclusion I can draw from all three of these is that I am vastly more pleased with my line art than with my shading. Especially on that third; you can really see there that the line art was pretty nice and then my shading just went everywhere. Eep.

Next up: some hourlies I did last week or tomorrow’s Art Institute drawings, whatever I feel like posting first.

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