Friday, December 26, 2014

Nanny, Pop, Pat

Now back to art making...This one is for my Aunt Pat. The two people on the right are my now deceased Nanny and Pop. The original image was from a photograph with Nanny and Pop at a picnic table. I changed the background, added Aunt Pat to the picture, and added certain items on the table that trigger certain memories of them when they were alive and well. I miss them.

Just being happy about an illustrator/author of a book I like

Herve Tullet will be a keynote speaker at the SCBWI conference in New York! Woot! Talk about shapes and colors, that's what this guy's all about. I wish I could be so simple with my compositions ;_; but alas it was never meant to be. :D

Saturday, December 20, 2014

My Ramble on Fred Tomaselli

Fred Tomaselli is another one of my favorite artists and another one that I'll go on a quick ramble about, making a teensy connection to my own view on art and my work and heck, life in general.

It isn't the psychedelic, tedious, and obsessive detailing that I'm in love with, I do like these aspects but there are other reasons why this artist has become one of my favorites. It's the taking from other creations and making them his own, a completely different concept from the piece's original placement and role in it's former image.

Of course any kind of collage artist holds a bit of this concept like Picasso and Braque who led the Cubist movement, as well as certain Dadaists and Surrealists like Man Ray and Hannah Hoch. Tomaselli just puts collage to a whole other different level and beyond, transcendental pieces building into one. He focuses on bringing the viewer to another world by overload of information, not showing the viewer multiple views and angles of one object or taking the viewer only into the subconscious realm or taking a political point of view against the art world.

It's this idea of information overload that I've been pondering during my life search of sorting out where I get my creativity and where others get theirs. Do all artists get their creations from many bits and pieces of people around, other artists, other writers, the internet, the thousand images everyone sees in a day, all pieced together like a hyper-active puzzle that no one would ever want to finish but one that they had to because the desire is overwhelming. For now I would say yes, every creator is constantly trying to complete their hyper-active chaotic yet orderly puzzle of information.

As a side note I enjoy watching his physical process of cutting pieces of paper, pouring on the resin, and painting over it to a finish. It's just fun to see. o.o

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Owl

This time it's the first image that I fully created for my portfolio, "The Boy and the Changing Forest Being". Again, I like the bottom one. The top is too yellow, not quit like the original, though the bottom one is a little too magenta. I like the effect so it's not too much of a bad thing. It flows much better than the yellow one in my opinion and I will keep searching ways to keep scans as close to their originals as possible. 

Friday, December 12, 2014

Am I a Goya Gag Gory Burton Ito Mixture of Whatsits?

Okay so today I'm comparing myself to Edward Gory and
Tim Burton, sadly. I like these drawings, prefer Edward Gory because
he reminds me of a Wanda Gag Goya. I can't not compare myself to these two artists because my work has similarities. I use the weird wonky shapes like Tim Burton, and I use hatching and cross hatching when I draw in ink/pen. As for Edward Gory, his stuff is just dark and strange with a sad humor however he can render creatures realistically, just look at that snailfish! It reminds me Junji Ito's Uzumaki, which is also dark with pen cross hatching and hatching... and of course the spirals with horror written all over it.

I could just be influenced by theater lighting, (I was a light tech for four years of high school and some of college...) so I like dramatic light sources and horror images give a lot of that. My natural hand that layers and layers in tiny buildups also suits hatching and cross hatching. Subject matter? Well I know that Tim Burton was influenced by quirky bad horror movies somewhere around the 50's theme or so, that could affect his weirdness. Wanda Gag was influenced by the Grimm Fairytales as she was one of the first to translate the stories from german to english. Goya just wanted to let the cruelty of the Romantic era be known  (insane asylums, war, disease).

Me? I'm influenced by my dreams, my anxieties, my depression, and my overactive imagination of that's Goya all the way!



I might never create something considered under horror but the influence is there. 

See it?

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Again to Something Different

I just watched a few videos on Mike Mignola, this one here, and he mentioned how he used to be inspired by Frank Frazetta, an earlier science fiction and fantasy illustrator. They draw the same subject matter, but their styles are completely different...but maybe I can make some comparisons.

On the left are images by Frank Frazetta.  On the right Mike Mignola images from good ol google. The top two look similar, lots of movement, the action happening right in front with no middle ground and these characters are on a roof, in combat or getting ready for combat. Mignola doesn't have that realistic rendering like Frazetta has, but the composition and the division of space he definitely does. Instead of using fabulous colors in this rendered, traditional oil painting sort of way, Mignola figures out how to show the colors flat but still with value, almost piecing the positive and negative shapes together on the page.

This time Mignola goes completely flat and shows what has inspired me as an artist, the beautiful, colorful negative and positive shapes. What I recently noticed about Mignola's work is how he sets a scene with all of these artistic elements and in this comparison I feel the similarity between the two (no not just with the round sun) but of two monsters looking in the distance before or after a battle. 
Of course the viewer behind the monster will feel different than in front, full face yet looking past the viewer in that same way, not seeing or caring about the onlookers. 

I compare the two simply because I want to see how one of my inspirations dealt with his inspiration and how this affected his art. I think I can see the bits of influence in there.

Comic books might not be my favorite type of art but Mike Mignola just might have an influence on mine, even if it is a small one. 

Another comparison with scanners

Another comparison. I'm torn between the two. On one hand I like the top one because of the light rusty, coffee stain color that's a bit closer to the color of the original. 

On the other hand I like the bottom because I didn't have to edit it in photoshop to piece the image together, so the layout is more accurate. I do like the darker wood though, so the bottom piece wins for me. 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

More changes with the epson

Comparing these images makes me realize how much I love my new scanner. It scans CMYK instead of RGB, so my colors are very much like the originals. Now on blogger everything seems to have a dark gray tone that covers the image so this final is a bit darker than the original but it still is closer to the previous scanned one. The top one had colors that didn't really exist on the original so I had to try to tweak it on photoshop when I was piecing the image together. Oh yeah, did I mention my printer is 11X17? OH YEARH.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Officially going back to Draw it Again Material...

I had created these two images during PiBoIdMo for my small novel I'm writing. It turned out that these two images had given me another idea for a picture book. In the meantime however, I created this scene because it wouldn't leave my mind. It was stuck there forever unless I drew it down. So here it is, the memory lurker in the King of Everything's hall of memories.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Okay, now I'm just fan girling over's fine! All for the creative process!

It was Wanda Gag who actually inspired me to take the long, treacherous journey to becoming a children's book illustrator/author. Before my third year of college, I had decided that maybe I could do illustration...or maybe I couldn't. The criticism was harsh, the assignments were difficult for me at the time (I was so used to being a fine artist who did work for myself) and the classwork was critiquing the awful homework I produced.

The change happened when I needed to give a presentation on an artist I had researched, an artist that inspired me. I looked over all the artists under the inspiration category and this is what I came up with: Salvador Dali, Heironymus Bosch, Robert Irwin, Kandinsky, Judy Pfaff, Rothko, Chagall...none of them were illustrators. None of them really had anything in common that I could figure out. Now I can see some abstract similarities but then I couldn't. I had another project similar to this one in which I chose to write something on Fail, a group of graffiti artists who still weren't illustrators. My influences were all over the spectrum, leaking into different categories like music, books, food, riding a train by myself,  and even some of the personalities of my co workers at the time when I worked at Dunkin Donuts. Anything seemed to inspire me BUT other illustrators.

I came across Wanda Gag when I googled "illustrators who drew in pen" or something like that. I started looking for ones that used materials that I normally do. And BAM. Also BAM when I realized she liked working both fine arts and illustration. She made me question what the difference was and why I needed to do both. I found that for me, the actual creating part was no different. I added the same elements, worked with the same mixed media, and kept the same personality in the nature of the markings. The only difference was I use fine arts to connect to myself and illustration to connect to other people, to communicate the ideas that the fine art had but didn't tell.

Thank you Wanda Gag for your love of fairy tales, for I love them too. Thank you for the inspiration!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Monday, December 1, 2014

Some Inspiration

Inspiration for the day! Sean Tan's video "The Lost Thing". I had forgotten about it until recently when I was looking up dream inspired children's books and BAM! Sean Tan is a children's book surrealist (but I'm pretty sure there's a more contemporary term for him XD) He had given me courage for the last idea yesterday. I say courage because there are plenty of artists who create strange, dark and quirky images and being someone who has been compared to Tim Burton, Edward Gory as well as Dr. Sues, Maurice Sendak and any other weird, well known artist out there for a good portion of my humble career it's good to know that I can keep going and still feel like it's my own work. I can move on and hopefully one day people will say my work looks like a Brittanny Handiboe. Anyway, I'm more influenced by artists who create works that are nothing like mine. Wanda Gag is a favorite, David Small, Eyvind Earle, Mike Mignola, Judy Pfaff, Mark Rothko, Robert Irwin, Ellesworth Kelly and several other artists. The list goes on.

As far as writing? I really don't know who I am as a writer. I can't compare myself to anyone because I've never thought of comparing myself. Maybe I should do that with my art for awhile and take a step back and look at it from there.

Enough of the inner exploration! Time to start working on those stories!

All Done! (Also Post PiBoIdMo)

I'm finished! I completed 30 ideas in 30 days. I didn't post this yesterday because I was shellshocked at how I succeeded in the challenge, also because I was working for nine hours, though those hours of work helped me think of the last idea! (and a good idea I think)

So here is the scroll that I'll make into a book later this month. I still have pages left, and I can always unfold the accordion again and add more notes for future ideas.

Now to figure out what the heck I'm going to do with the unfinished ideas! I wanted to think of one story each day so I could work on that story the entire day, hoping I would be able to think of something to work with instead of random ideas and thoughts, though plenty of random thoughts happened I assure you. This didn't work out like I wanted but not because I couldn't think of ideas furthering the story. What happened was I would think of an idea, get stuck and leave it for the day. The next day I would think of another idea that would then lead me to more clues to the previous story. It was a build up, ideas happening because I just let each one sit. 

So I think I can easily say that because I focused on one idea a day, I managed to get a good 17 ideas that will make a good dummy, perhaps more if I work hard!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Almost There

Strange ideas come to mind but I'm rolling with them. I'm hoping they are my own strange ideas and not subconsciously borrowed as it would almost break my heart because they are personally influenced stories. Everyone has a different voice though, or so they say, so I'm going to keep at it. 

Here's some more doodles that had inspired me further, someday they'll be real illustrations ;)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Day 20

It's now day 20 of the challenge and I've come up with the ideas (thinking of the one for today) and realized that these idea might not all be picture books. Some I think can turn into middle grade reads while others I can see being both. I have so much more discipline with my art than my writing, so I need to fight past that and become used to drawing and writing every day. Still going to do my next month challenge with "The Nightlander". In the mean time, here are some sample images from the sketchbook, and trust me I will be drawing them again.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Day 17

So far I have 17  ideas! Don't know if they're good or not, well some I know are and some I know are definitely NOT. Today's idea came from another illustrator's image. Just one look at it and out came a hidden idea that I've thought about awhile ago but didn't act on simply because I thought that it wouldn't be as kid appropriate as it should. Then I thought, does it matter? Well yes, but I should just write it and THEN decide how to make it a bit more for kids. I'm super excited for the ideacI just hope it comes out as fantastic as it soars in my mind.

Another thought from this month was maybe I should write a scifi or horror. Most of my earlier stories lingered around these genres and the only thing that's stopping me is FEAR. I'm afraid of failure but if I don't try then I'll definitely FAIL.

So next month I'm having my own writing month, well a month that I really focus on getting "The Nightlander" started. I begun a draft then stopped because it didn't seem middle grade like I had in mind. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't but does it really matter at this point? No, I should just write the darn thing!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Day 12 update

Well, It's now day 12 and I've fallen behind! Only by one day so it shouldn't be too hard to catch up! The ideas come in waves, kinda like this little big sea monster here, ignored on occasion but once the idea is in sight I wonder how the heck I missed it. The note line on my wall is also going swimmingly. ;)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

New Post Card~

New post card! (Its still grey! oh well) About time I came up with a new one. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Day 4

Sketches! It's day 4 of PiBoIdMo and I actually think I could do something with the 4 stories I created within the time frame. I'm finding it difficult not to continue working on them and thinking of something else but so far I have kept up the work! He's a little bit of story in scribbles of a sketchbook that continued haphazardly on my note scroll. 

Friday, October 31, 2014

A String of Notes

That long white strip hanging from my wall is actually a string of notecards connected together by an accordion book binding technique. Why is it on my wall? Because of PiBoIdMo of course!

The best ideas always come from random life moments that I scribble in my sketch book. Lately I've been searching for time to complete my portfolios. I've found some here and there but no long hours of constant working like I used to in my senior studio in college. Is this due to the fact that my room is also my studio/library? Is it because I have two jobs now and no days off?

Or maybe it's just because I have a hard time focusing on one thing because there are so many other ideas getting in the way. I have found a solution!

These helplessly hanging notecards are just waiting for me to scribble all over them with ideas that I can briefly forget for the time being. Have an idea? Just write or draw it out on the notecard then move on. If I want to elaborate then I'll just use more notecard space and at the end of the month I'll bind it in my book of ideas. 

Pretty nifty and helpful for someone who has a hard time sorting out all the ideas that flash in my hyper active brain at once!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Mimi and Shelby

Another progression piece! (This is separate from PiBoIdMo but still need to work on things before the big event, right?) This piece is apart of the "Witnessing Memories" Portfolio here. I struggled with this one a bit because I added my cousin Shelby from other photos and memory. I had to make up her body movements from what I know of here and I had to remember her usual expression. took awhile but I finally finished it. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


I've cleaned my work some extent, I have my materials organized somewhat, I'm quickly binding my idea book, and my inspiration haphazardly surrounds me. I think I'm almost ready for PiBoIdMo.

All I have to do is blog about it.

Hello all! For the next month I'll be writing on Draw it Again about my ideas for Picture Book Idea Month. It's my first year dedicated to writers month! And the blog's name matches the theme, yes I will be drawing these ideas over and over again in editing. I'll also try a hand at NaNoWriMo simply because I have a story idea that can't have a chance at getting published if I never write it...

For the next month I'll post sneak peeks and my struggles with ideas, hopefully some inspirational quotes and stories as well.