Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Alice, coming together

While I've been wracking my nerves preparing for thesis proposal, and watching my fellow creative students present, I've been doodling. No, more like taking brief moments to enlarge and piece apart the Alice doll I posted about a couple of weeks ago.
After enlarging her, I realized that she's going to be AWESOME in a large format. I haven't made many large-scale dolls aside from the mock-up I made of my thesis doll, and I have to admit that it's winning me over.
Large scale work is often daunting because details are blown up, which means possible mistakes are blown up. But it's very rewarding seeing something you've been working on it this large format.
Now, onto the art!

When constructing dolls, I do the sketches first, then enlarge/shrink them, and then lay out the body parts on tracing paper. I'll then transfer the parts onto watercolor paper and start the painting process.

I just love her nose! (My thesis doll mock-up is making an appearance)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Dolls dolls dolls

I'm cross posting from my thesis blog to this one, because I believe it relates. This is a mock up of one of the dolls I'm working on for my senior thesis.

To get a better idea of what I'm doing, check out the link above.


And final:

This is a photoshop mock up of how the doll is going to be assembled. Background image (which still needs a little tweaking because you can't see what's going on inside), and inside of a hand-made box. (I'm sure my dad and boyfriend are going to get a kick out of building these boxes)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

New doll in the works

Here's a sketch of the doll I have in the works. I'm looking forward to plotting out her limbs and getting right to creating her.

A lot of paper doll artists have their dolls professionally printed and make them available to customers to cut and assemble themselves. I'm toying with that idea, but I really have a hard time with that.
I'm a big fan of the artifact. Seeing the hand of the artist in the work. If I had them professionally printed, that would save me time and stress by mass producing some of my work. But I think I would keep the aspect of the aritfact by assembling the dolls  myself and offering the finished product for sale.
Does that take too much of the artist out of the art? Would people be interested in the semi-mass produced doll?

I think I'll stick to one of a kind until it's feasible for me to print.

So here's Alice. Of my own imagination.
Alice in a steampunk-y incarnation

Friday, October 15, 2010

Baba Yaga

3 or 4 years ago at my previous college, we were given the task of drawing something that pertained to myths. I chose the Russian/Slavic myth of Baba Yaga.

While I won't go into detail about the story, because it's relatively simple to google it.

I liked what I came up with at that time. And since I'd never colored anything digitally, I decided to tackle that obstacle. Not my best work, but I think it came out better than I expected for someone who's never painted digitally.
Alright, I guess. It was fun testing the waters

I decided that I wanted to use this image again for my portfolio, and thought I'd redraw it. Although, I'm still attached to my original drawing, again, I like the way that this one came out. I was going to leave it in black and white, but it needs a little something to make it pop. So I'm currently adding some digital color to it. But this time I'm doing digital because I'm too afraid to touch it with gouache. I spent days drawing the original and I don't want to mess it up. But I guess that's the nature of traditional media. You're just going to have to bite the bullet and get in and do it.

Tightening up some linework and adding color digitally.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Saint Pork

started a sketch some months ago after I got my bacon tattoo. Yes I  have a bacon tattoo. Anyway, it got me pondering about the magical draw that bacon has on so many people (me included). The first thing that came to mind was the saintly pig. The pork could do no wrong. I wanted to celebrate the food that has so many people under its spell while still showcasing my sense of humor.

The next step is to start painting in gouache and add liquid gold leaf to the halo. I’ve worked with gold leaf in my patron saints portrait series, and I hope that I never have to use it again. Unless I can meet someone who knows how to use it much better than I do.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Fear is a stalker

I think I've come to see what's keeping me from doing everything I SHOULD be doing. And it is fear. I haven't really put my finger on what the fear actually is, but at least I acknowledge it.
Maybe it's a fear of success. I've seen it first hand.
Maybe it's a fear of failure.
Maybe it's a little of both.

I want to succeed, and I've known failure and I think I've tricked myself into thinking I'm ok with it.

I started to tackle these fears this afternoon when I picked up the self portrait that's been sitting at my desk for almost two months.

I wanted to spend my summer break preparing myself for my senior thesis. But I couldn't bring myself to complete A SINGLE PROJECT. I started an Edgar Allen Poe portrait, it flopped, I threw it away and didn't pick anything back up at all.
I think finishing my pin up project finally pushed my mental buttons.

I'll be afraid. But this time, I'll be afraid with the knowledge that it's sitting in my brain and waiting for me, and if I combat it by working then maybe I can come to terms with it. As long as I can keep it chained up.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Ready for some pin action?

I can't stand the fact that FaceBook compresses my images so badly. So I'm uploading my newest pin up here.

I've worked off and on for about a week on her, and I usually don't like to do images of people in a full frontal pose. I really like the way profile and 3/4 poses look. They're more dynamic.
I missed doing these. I have about 3-4 more in my sketchbooks that I really should do. It's a nice break from being "professional".


(I totally forgot to post progress photos! So here they are)

I give you the final: "Who's Ready for Some Pin Action?" ©2010

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Sketchbook Project

Steve and I just signed up for the sketchbook project through arthouse co-op. The general idea is: they send you a moleskine sketchbook after you pick a theme, and you spend the next couple of months filling the pages loosely based on the theme you've chosen. Then you send it back and it's archived and goes on tour with the thousands of others who've submitted theirs as well.

I'm excited to start this project because I am the WORLDS worst procrastinator. I call it my fear of success. So this is totally going to force me to WORK!

Now I'm going to head back and try to fix the many mistakes on the painting I picked back up after 10 years. It was just fine the way it was before I decided to "fix" it. Now I've committed myself.. I have to finish it.

Oh and a big thank you to my freckle-faced sweetheart for the Tara McPherson book.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Always half done

So I haven't been sitting on my laurels too much lately. It's just that I haven't finished anything. Started, yes. Finished, no. But that's my usual M.O. So my plan is to at least COMPLETE the four projects I have started before school starts in September. One has to be finished before October because I want to put it in a group show.

So here are photos of the 3 out of the 4 projects I have started. These are rough sketches and drafts.

Speaking of school... When I got my award letter, I was reminded that I was $2,000 short of being able to pay for next semester. I'm at my lifetime limit of federal loans. I wished that I would have remembered this after I graduated the first time. I went to a technical school 1997-1998, spent or rather, wasted $13,000 on a certificate that was useless.  The school taught us programs that were obsolete by the time I graduated and their idea of a placement department was scanning the newspaper and sending you to the interview. I sure wish I could have half of that $13k now that I'm trying to get my BFA. It's just a case of "if I knew then what I know now". But you can't focus on that, just go full steam ahead.

I'm appreciative of all the grants AND scholarships that I've received. It's relieved a lot of the burden of having to take out loans. I really should have just stayed at my parents house and used my last personal loan to pay for looming school debt. But, being 33, I was eager to get back into living on my own and with Steve coming home from Iraq, I thought it would be a little uncomfortable having him stay and "live" with us there. But looking back on it now, it would have been a sound financial idea for the both of us.

When I first got the letter I thought "This is what I needed to get my ass in gear to freelance" and more recently I've spent a few moments panicking, sobbed a little and set my mind right again by allowing the chips to fall where they may and applied for work. At least I could try to make monthly payments, right? It's been harrowing.

The Universe has been good to me. I could spend an hour giving you great, positive examples. Steve, Portland, friends, school, family, etc. I just need to trust in that, and not give in to the dark thoughts of panic and negativity. It's hard when I'm so close to the end I can touch the finish line. Shit, I can see the finish line. I'm the first person in my family to go to school and get a degree. I live to make my family proud of me. I want to do this, I've worked so incredibly hard to get where I am now. I sacrificed more than I care to admit.

I spent so long in the beginning being a whiny bitch and wanting to quit if I didn't get my way.  I've made so many positive changes since that little girl (of 28) that I don't want to ruin it. If I have to put it off for another year, fine. I don't really want to do this because I'm so close, but if I have to, I will begrudgingly do it.

I'm scared. But I'm ready. And I'm ready to work my ass off even more to get there.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Oh, seriously now, I've been slacking

I've found myself with an amazing opportunity that I've been neglecting. I could be flourishing in my "studio" and pumping out work left and right.
Instead, I wake up, stay in my pajamas until the afternoon, and talk to myself about all the things I "could" be doing.
I "could" be promoting myself. I "could" be trying to put out new work. I "could" be experimenting. I "could" be trying to make some money from my work.
I've spent a long time being insecure about my stuff, referring to the multitude of other artists I know who are wildly talented and great at self promotion.
But I live like a hermit with my work because I keep telling myself that I don't have any great ideas, when in fact I have a plethora of ideas that I haven't even tried yet.
I tell myself it'll never work because I can't do it, it won't turn out right. But how will I know if I don't try?!
I tell myself that no one follows my stuff because no one really reads my blogs anymore. Well, who's going to read a blog that's barely updated? Who's going to check out a website that has outdated art and hasn't been completed?

I am able to do this through the awesome generosity of my boyfriend, and basically, by not working on anything, I'm shoving it in his face. I was able to start working on a painting that has remained unfinished for almost 10 years. That was the kick to the ass that I needed. Now I'm in the mood to get this tiny ball rolling.

So there. I said it. I'm putting my butt back in the saddle, and working like a big girl should. Big girl pants on.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Man About Town

I wanted to join a local group art show this month called "Creepy Crawlies" but because of outstanding attentions skills, I missed the deadline. So I figured I'd finish at least one project I started.I've been inspired to work more with linoleum prints because they've gone over so well with people. Someone bought two of my robot pieces as a wedding gift to their friend, from the show I was in last month...er, well, in February.
I love working in the medium, and mom was sweet enough to buy me a mini press, and I'm still learning the process. But it's stress relieving and fun!

So here's two versions of "Man About Town". The one in the frame is the last print before I edited the image. The second, I thinned out his jacket a bit and am trying to decide who's going to go in the frame.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

In between

I haven't been doing as much personal work as I would like lately. I just got over a case of the cabin fever blues and then jumped right into school.
I was worried that I wouldn't be able to get any drawing done this semester because I have mostly liberal arts classes.
But I got to do a narrative piece that I've had mulling in my mind for years now.

I may change it at some point in the future because I want to practice my technique more. I'll let you decide what the story is.

I'll write more (and include photos) of the group show I was in recently at the good gallery here in portland. Robot Love: 2010. It's fairly self explanitory... but my parents, boyfriend, and good friends showed up and made me feel very loved. I'll write more about it as soon as I get some photos of it hanging.

*process photos of my narrative piece*