Monday, June 19, 2017

WORK OF ART

This week's portrait, Lena Dunham!

So fidget spinners are now a dying fad already? I got wind of them by accident on Amazon. The price was cheap and they seemed fun. Now that I have a collection of about 30, I can say I was right about the price and the fact that they are addictively fun.

What does that have to do with Lena, actually nothing, I just read an article about spinners while writing this and of course playing with a spinner in my left hand. It's that modern day multi tasking thing.

I became aware of Lena as a result of watching “Girls”. Watched all 5 seasons. The first episode introduce us to the last black male and any minority in Brooklyn, New York and after those first 3-4 episodes, Brooklyn looked liked the New York of “Seinfeld” and “Friends.” But to my surprise this quantum reality was fun to watch. I decided to do the portrait after watching an episode in season 4 where Lena went to a photographer to get some nudes photos taken of her. The scene reminded me of a classical, beautiful Mucha model painting. I created a nude of her based on that, but had second thoughts about posting it and instead decided to include her in this portrait series.

As with past portraits I've tried to work with colors that I feel match the subject. Though I am happy with this piece, I would love to show the nude piece of her someday.



Monday, June 12, 2017

I KNOW HIM!

This week’s portrait, Pierre Bernard Jr.!

I’ve been wanting to do a portrait of Pierre for a while now but couldn’t find the time and he wasn’t exactly making this easy for me either.

I’ve known him for a while and I can say first hand he isn’t an easy person to get to know. He’s extremely private to a fault. And when you think you’ve got him figured out he might change up on you, which can be annoying. I know he’s reading this and saying it’s not true but am sorry friend, it is. But he is a good guy, a decent artist, and he collects way too many toys (Not trying to get on your bad side but you really do have too many “toys”).

This portrait was fun to work on. It was almost like looking in a mirror in some ways and seeing myself. Originally I was going to render him with his usual blank expression but thought I’d bring some life to his face by making him look happy and surprised. I also wanted to use his favorite colors, green and turquoise blue. The red I picked up on from seeing a icon drawing of him on social media.

Pierre, I hope you like your portrait!



Tuesday, May 30, 2017

MY ONLINE ART MUSE

This week’s portrait, Eugenia Diordiychuk!
2006, Chicago, that was the year Late Night with Conan O’Brien went there for a week of shows at the Chicago Theater. And while I was there during my off hours was the time I first saw pictures of a model named Katie Fey and later come to know her as Eugenia Diordiychuk (won’t go into details, save them for another time).

She's a model mostly known for her pictures on the web. To say she is beautiful is an understatement in my mind. It's strange how seeing someone you've never met can give you feelings of familiarity and closeness. Hey, in case you're thinking it, I am not stalking her... or anyone for that matter, too much energy and time needed and I don't have enough of either to spare.

I've created art works of her numerous times, and in each one finding something different and interesting about her looks that's worth exploring.

I found out recently that she is an artist as well, she went to art school in the Ukraine. Her art work is pretty good.

With this art piece I wanted to capture what I perceived as her soft side, using pastel colors all over except for her lips in which I used a magenta red color to draw attention to her lips.

She’s definitely someone I hope I'll have a chance encounter with someday, who knows, maybe she'll come and draw at one of my Cosplay events. That would be so freakin' cool!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

LOST OF FRIENDS

This week's portrait, Sherilyn Stetz! 


I had some morphine last week, kidney stones. Felt great for an hour or two, the pain was gone for but then it came back, not as intense but enough to make my day shitty. Over the weekend I had another attack, but this time I stayed curled up in bed and just endured the pain till it subsided and I passed out.

Lately life has been causing me a lot of pain and it's at these moments I tend to start buying more crap than usual. In this case, those Pops character figures from Funko, suppliers of my bobblehead addiction.

The life pain is from the fact that in a 2 month period, three friends past away. Sara Porter, Sherilyn Stetz and Doreen Austria. And my mother and aunt almost added themselves to this list.

My mom is doing better but my aunt is a day to day. I love these 2 people a lot, but then again, I lucked out, I have a great family. Nothing but great memories and hopefully many more new ones.

Sara I worked with back in New York. We were friends enough back then that she allowed me to use her as a model for some of my artwork. The one piece I did of her ended up being art for a Christmas card.

Doreen, was a true geek girl. Didn't get to hang out as much as I would have liked but the few times we did, it was pure nerd bliss.

Sherilyn was a friend but I did have a lot of contact with her. She was someone who always had great things to say and always had a smile. When I heard she was sick, I drew a get well card for her. And word got to me she was doing better. Then next thing I am hearing is that she's gone.

I decided I wanted to do this portrait of her for myself. I wanted to draw what I remembered of her. Sara, I have my art of her, Doreen, I have pictures of us together, but I had nothing tangible on Sherilyn. Now that's changed.

I miss these friends.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

"HEY PIERRE, WANT TO GO TO DRINK AND DRAW?"

This week's portrait is Howard Shum!

When I think about what have been my biggest influences so far since living here in Los Angeles, all thoughts lead back to Howard and, “Whatsername.”*

Whatsername, for telling me I should look up these interesting life drawing events happening in L.A., one being, Dr Sketchy. And Howard for asking me to join him at a Gallery Girls, Drink and Draw event at the Falcon on Sunset. That was the evening I saw Jennifer Fabos Patton for the first time, dressed as a gypsy, and my world haven't been the same since.

I've been drawing circles almost all my known life. At a later Drink and Draw, someone asked me, why circles. “I don't know why circles, I just know I feel great doing them, it almost feels like sex!”

There's no way of knowing today had I stayed in New York and not took the invite to continue working with Conan, what my life would have been like. Somehow I doubt I’d be posting portraits or involve in going to and hosting life drawing events.

Howard is a writer, director and comic artist. I wanted with this portrait to emphasize the comic art side of him. I made the design look like a comic book page with blue lines for ruling and cropping. I thought it would be cool to make it look like a pencil drawing that was being inked.

Easier said then done! I used a few variety of greys to get the penciled look and went over areas with black ink to represent inking. I can say with knowledge that this was a hard piece to do using ink. I'm real happy with the final art.

Thank you Howard and Whatsername, for directing me on this path!

*SIDE NOTE: Whatsername, is someone who meant a lot to me once. She was very inspirational back in New York, and very supportive as I made the transition to California. But like anything in life, things changed and we both went different ways. Unlike the song, I haven't forgotten her name or memories. But I think for now it's probably best to leave her nameless, unless she calls herself out. I'll always have respect for her and what she did for my life in the short time of knowing her.

Monday, April 24, 2017

VITAMEATAVEGAMIN

This week’s portrait, Lucille Ball!

If you have no idea what the title is referencing, YouTube it, and see what comedy use to look like before the current day of formulated un original laughs.

This was a lot of fun to work on. Aside from being an incredibly funny person, Lucy was beautiful. I wanted to try and capture that beauty as well as her colorful personality in this art piece. And again I am bummed out that the scan doesn’t do the original justice. All the colors look flat.

Lucy came to mind as a subject for a portrait for a few reasons, the top of which, originality. I guess with TV being some what new at the time of the, “I Love Lucy Show”, the content had to be new as well since there wasn’t anything like it to copy except old radio shows. But now almost 50 years later, you have a majority of writers and performers who do nothing but copy visuals from the past that were funny and just modernize them for today’s audience.

To some degree this is true of the art world as well. Originality sort of went out the window as artists look for the quick dollar imitating other successful artists.

Anyway, Lucy’s generation were truly original artists. And what she did on television was genius.

I raise a nice big table spoon full of Vitameatavegamin in her memory for being such an amazing artist!

Monday, April 17, 2017

I WISH U HEAVEN

This week’s portrait, Prince!
I love Prince’s music. Purple Rain and 1999 are among my favorite albums. It’s hard to just listen to an individual track and not the entire album at once. It’s like everything flows into each other, kind of like David Bowie’s “Ziggy Stardust” or Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”. I knew when I started this portrait that purple and violet were going to be major colors in it. Then I got the idea of incorporating the flower design from the Purple Rain album into the art. And as expected, the scan doesn’t do justice to the colors in the final original art.

Friday will mark the first year of Prince’s death. Lately death has been on my mind more than usual. It sort of been hanging around my family for a few weeks now, not making any aggressive moves, simple making its presence known like some uninvited guest. It is the reason I wasn’t able to post a portrait last week. The last time it visited was a long while back, it decided to take my dad when it left.

I am sure by the weekend there will be a ton of tributes to Prince. His fan base is still weeping his passing, and the news will make it a feeding frenzy with all sort of give-a-aways, tribute concerts and other moronic events all tied to cashing in on his death. People will of course jump on board and make it profitable for these companies to do so. But hopefully there will be a few who will take this as a moment to reflect on life in general, truly appreciate the artist that Prince was, and when they hear themselves saying his death was sudden or too soon, they will turn and remember to honor the people they care about who are still among the living.

Go call or visit someone you care about.
Now!