Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Volley XVII: Tapes!

I got hired to do some album art by a friend of mine who owns a record label. I spent a night or two working on a few drawings to try to make something to fit the theme of the album. I haven't drawn daily for a long time. As such, it takes me longer to get started and my head gets in my way. The album is based on the film "Vampyr." The film itself is very atmospheric and ethereal. The sound is like a toned down Delìrium Còrdia. Granted, the original score long predates the Fantômas album by decades. I had seen the movie previously and found it creepy and surreal, but could not remember a lot specifically from it. Google image search wasn't super helpful either. There is however the iconic scythe.

So why not start there? It had to happen quickly, so I whipped something out in pen and ink. And started buzzing from fumes. Don't use ink designed for graffiti in a tiny apartment kids, protip.

Starting to look very metal, no? I sent it to Paul going "Ohmygudpleasehelp," because I'm an insecure bastard. In a typical Paul fashion-- that being very direct, but coated with a generous helping of unsparing humor, he responded.

He's right, by the way. And we went back and fourth for a bit about approach and planning an image. It's an interesting drawing, but what does it do? This guy's some goon with a scythe just standing there. There's no interaction or engagement with anything. Graphically it works, but it can be better.

At Paul's suggestion, I gave myself an hour (double the time it should have taken me), to hash out some thumbails and complete a new drawing. I was listening to things to put me in the mood, like Velnias. This is done in gesso and charcoal and was as far as I got in that time. The hands are derpy, but I like the textures that are happening, and the hazy quality of it. I was thinking of the vampire either coming from, or dissolving into the smoky background. That's not clear enough though (ha.) and I think I was just fixated on repeating that brush stroke. 

Finished product. Hands are less derpy and the girl actually has legs now. There are some really cool things going on, but still it's a constant reminder that I need to be drawing more. Unfortunately, this image wasn't used. The band had their own artist, but truthfully, she made a much more delicate and haunting picture than I, and that works much better for the sound of the band.

I did get to use an (older) picture on the back though, which works well to offset the delicacy.

The album is out now, so please go buy it. He's a good dude, and the sound is haunting.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Volley XVI: The Male Gaze

Recently, I sat in on a figure drawing class. I also had the time to shoot a bunch of them in between scratching my head to fix this. I'll be out of town for a bit, but you probably won't notice any less irregularity in updates. All of these were done in under half an hour, forty five minutes max. With charcoal and white chalk. 

 They all begin the same way, with a gesture/drawing of the skeleton in vine charcoal, and then I start building. My drawings don't feel very solid, or rather the figures don't feel very grounded, but they themselves do a good job of having mass. Like they're being sculpted. Which is weird to me because I focus on line and movement of it a lot. Or at least I think I do. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Volley XV: I look at myself way too much.

Actually, I don't. It's a real problem. I have body image issues, in that I'm pretty fuckin' ugly. I used to give the description "bridge troll like," when people asked about my appearance, but for the sake of maintaining a type of chaotic good/chaotic neutral, Paul gave the descriptor "Taco Dwarf." Which fits perfectly.

Regardless, as money is tight and I haven't gotten out much to draw others, I had a friend come over and photograph me. And a deer skull. I was remembering Hamlet, or rather the grave digger and Yorick in particular. I want to make a picture that is whimsical (for me, in that no one is screaming) and has elements that are in conversation with eachother. I also like the idea of ritual, and the me in the painting is not holding the skull in a manner of study, but rather one of contemplation, or as if he were engaged in conversation with it.

Now based on these images, you might be pondering "what skull, you dope? All I see is a weird looking chubby dude doing an Errol Flynn (and failing) impersonation?" Well fear not viewers. It is said that Sargent, in his attempts to capture Virginie Amélie Avegno Gautreau, he composed multiple watercolor studies. This may have been due to the fact that he was struggling to get her skin tone correct and she kept hiding it behind (as was customary for the time amongst celebrities) piles of leaded white makeup and unnatural coloring. So here's study number one. More to come soon.