Monday, August 29, 2016

My Art is on real Websites Y'all

So I haven't really talked about what I do at my graphic design job, mostly because it's not very exciting. I most make flyers and pamphlets about the various things and events the college of Social and Behavioral Sciences has to offer. Occasionally Photoshop terrible pictures of professors for their website profile picture. 

However, a few weeks ago I got to do a really exciting thing! The SBS college is hosting an event called The Great Cartoon Debate of 2016. Two famous political cartoonists from each side of the political spectrum are going to talk politics in the best way they know how: through cartoons! This will all take place in front of a live audience, in a small movie theather here in Tucson (I'm not much into politics, but I think I might actually go to this, it seems that it will be hilarious!) But anyway, a graphic was needed to advertise this on the social medias and various print and online calendars, and yours truly was asked to create it! 

Here it is: 

And this is on the SBS Facebook page, the theater's website, and a few more websites. It's so exciting to see my (MY) art out in the world, it's just a little cartoon, it took only a few hours to make, but still!! Everyone at work was super impressed, and more people know my name and what I do now. This is just the begging of a lot of great opportunities, I just know it!

Now for some art for school. 

For some reason art classes love to start with a portrait, often a self portrait too, so I'll be doing one of those soon(bleh), but since the other portrait can be of anyone or anything I got real creative and chose Pharaoh Hatshepsut. I learned about Hatshepsut about a year ago, and she's been in the back of my mind ever since, and while pondering what awesome woman to do for this portrait assignment her story popped back into the front of my mind. 

Let me tell you a little about her. She lived way back in 1400 BCE, daughter of the Pharaoh, Thutmose I. Her husband/brother died when his son was very young, and since a kid can't really rule Egypt, she became queen regent. However, she really took over, becoming more powerful than any female ruler before her, taking on the role of Pharaoh, which is supposed to be a male role since the Pharaoh was an incarnation of the male god Horus. So she tried to assume a more masculine role by wearing the Nemes headdress (think King Tut's sarcophagus) and fake beard, and sometimes using the name Hetshepsu, with a masculine ending (think Alexander vs. Alexandra). From the records she seemed to be pretty good ruler, started trade, built a cool burial complex, fought off the enemy, etc. 

But about 20 years after her death, someone tried to literally erase her from history. Her statues were destroyer, her name and images chiseled off the walls of her temple. Just enough remains that archaeologists pieced her story together, and even found her mummy not in the official tomb, but in an unmarked one somewhere else. No one knows who did this, or exactly why, but we can be pretty certain that the fact that she was a woman had something do with it. As I mentioned before, the Pharaoh was an incarnation of a male god, and a woman doing that went against societal roles and cultural values of predictability and maintaining tradition. 

Here's a picture of one of her statues from Wikipedia:

There a several documentaries about her on YouTube that I would encourage you to check out to learn more, it's a really fascinating tale. So I have this idea of drawing her, standing in a powerful positing, but she's also being blown away, as if she were made from the sand dunes of Egypt itself. These are some of my first doodles for it. 

I'm very excited to work on this project!

Lastly, some leg art =D

Friday, August 19, 2016

Last Days of Summer

 Happy Friday!

It's my last Friday before school starts, so I better finish catching up on what I've been doing this summer (the big stuff anyway, I won't bore you with my napkin doodles).

Here is the last illustration I did for Love in the Time of Global Warming. I didn't do all the illustrations I wanted to, but maybe I can continue them in whatever bit of free time I have as well as during holiday breaks. 

I really like this hoodie, by the way. I'm way too proud of it, I don't usually do fabric that well.

I have been making a few illustrations for an internship I will have over the next school year. They wanted me to have some stuff ready before school started, which was not preferable, but at least it was enjoyable to make. I also made a couple of maps and started designing a workbook for children (my internship involves me creating teaching materials); that stuff isn't very exciting though, so I won't bother to post it here. 

Check out these desert animals though! I'm going to be learning so much about the Sonoran Desert here in southern Arizona. 

This is a Cooper's Hawk.

Purple-backed spiny lizard. 

And this is giant desert centipede, it's about as long as a dollar bill.

I will use these and other drawings for the cover of the workbook as well as for creating a poster of the the various biomes at Mt. Lemmon, which is a mountain just north and east of Tucson, AZ. The workbook will be in black and white, but the poster will be in color, and here are some of the plants that I have just finished coloring this morning. 

This is an Ocotillo plant, which is just nature's barbed wire. It's just sticks with giant spikes coming out and a few leaves in between, lovely. 

Of course, the famous Saguaro cactus, I don't think the color is quite right on this one, so I will probably do it again. 

And lastly we have a Prickly Pear cactus, these guys are everywhere in southern Arizona, they produce a dark purple-redish fruit which some people like to eat. I will be making lots of similar drawings for my internship in the next few months, so I will keep you updated on those.

So that's it, that's just about all the art I've made this summer. And that's the end of summer 2016. Where did the time go? Time to get back to class projects. I'm really excited about the things I'll come up with this semester!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Catching Up

Hey y'all. 

I have not forgotten about this blog, I have just didn't really have any art to share for a while, but in the past couple of weeks I have made a lot of art. Every week this summer has been different, some days I get home from work and just art until I go to bed, other days I watch TV (which I now have!) and hang out with friends, so I've just been all over the place. I have also been working with a friend making logos and working on branding for a company he's starting, and that's all I say for now. For real, he made me sign an non-disclosure agreement. . .

So, it's been a good summer overall, even though I've been working, I've still had time to do a good handful of fun things and still bust out my sketchbook once in a while. 

So earlier I mentioned I was working on a long-term project: illustrating a young adult book! So this has been quite the challenge, and I don't know if I'll even do as many illustrations as I wanted to. It was harder than I thought too. The plan was to read the book and I went along I would leave sticky notes with ideas and doodles for whatever scene I wanted to illustrate, then once I finished the book I would go on to make all the illustrations. 

But being the person I am, I just read the book for fun, got really into it and totally forgot to take notes on what scenes to illustrate! So I'd have to go back and re-read things, and then make the notes. And other times I would get really into my doodles and overthink them. Instead of just drawing a street and pretending it's a place in California I spent an hour or two stalking stalking the streets of Beverly Hills on Google Maps looking for the perfect intersection. This was completely unnecessary. So it's been slow going. 

I'll tell you a little about the book before the pictures so that maybe they make sense. They are completely out of order because I was excited to draw some scenes and characters more than others. The book is "Love in the Time of Global Warming" by Francesca Lia Block, the title of course being a reference to "Love in the Time of Cholera" by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I thought it was really clever! Because you know, back in the day lack of sanitation killed humans, and now one of our biggest problems is dealing with global warming. (Though there are still people out there who don't have sanitation and clean drinking water, and that sucks and makes me very sad. . .but that's not why we're here, is it?). 

So the book is sort of a typical post apocalypse story, a few survivors become unlikely friends as they drive around in a car fueled by used vegetable oil, raiding convenience stores for scraps of canned food. But it's also sci-fi because there's some mad scientist creating genetic mutants. And it is also a sort of re-telling of The Odyssey by Homer, you know, the one where the dude takes forever to get home because he's a show off and keeps getting in trouble with gods and witches and cyclopes? So there are giants and witches and mermaids (kinda), as well as characters finding stuff out about themselves,
finding out what's important in life, and of course, falling in love. It was a very fun book to read, and illustrating it has been fun too. 

So these are some of the complete drawings I have as well as some not-so-finished products. 

 This is the main character, Penn, waking up in her what's left of her house alone, 56 days after the earthquake/tsunami/flood that destroyed everything. 

This is the "Lotus Hotel" where a bunch of teenagers found refuge after the disaster. 

This is Hex, the love interest with a neck tattoo, squeezing some flower juice into a cup. 

In this scene some creeps break into Penn's house, and she's just sitting on a mattress in the basement holding some scissors in a feeble attempt at defending herself. I couldn't get the perspective right, so I cut out some people shapes from paper and taped them in the right place on a bookshelf, took some pictures and used those to help me draw. Gotta get creative like that sometimes. 

This is Tara, a sort of reincarnation of the Buddhist goddess by the same name. 

And this was my first attempt at a gouache painting! I know it's not great, but hey, gotta start somewhere.

I very impulsively bought gouache last week. I have never used it before, but after watching some videos of people using it, I decided it was a medium worth trying. I have really liked it so far. It's like watercolor, but better! Watercolor is the devil of art supplies, it's incredibly difficult to control, once it's on the paper there's no going back, and it just does whatever it wants, doesn't matter what you want, watercolor will overpower you! Gauche (pronounced goo-ash) is more opaque, and it's re workable, and not runny. So here are some things I've been doing with it.

I'm actually pretty happy with this little mermaid. We're getting there. 

So I still have a lot of stuff to share, including some of the fun stuff I've make at work, but this post is getting a little too long. I'll be back before the end of next week, bye for now!