Friday, December 31, 2010

Gym Guy: Pretty Girl, refined

Well, okay, not so refined-looking, but I think I got more of his likeness. I spent the last few days at the gym spying on him, but I think he was on to me.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Marlene and her friend Heron

Marlene and her friend Heron may have overpacked.

This was Wednesday's post, but since I was waiting on approval for Tuesday's, I forgot to post it. I'm such a stickler for timing sometimes.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Second Whim

All done, methinks. Well, pending approval from the guy I was doing it for. At the last moment, the transparencies I was working on looked wan, and I reverted everything back to the opaque colors I started with, but with the layers imitating transparency intact, and it looked right. Where's the drawing part? Well, every single sploosh and highlight was redrawn by hand to be precise, so methinks that counts...

These sploosh works are probably getting to be boring for this blog but this should be the last of them for now. I'll certainly replace the image with the fuller one once my 'client' releases it for his company - don't want to steal their thunder!

edit: just replaced the holding image with the finished one on 01.09.11

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Gel Splooshes

I've decided to make the splooshes somewhat translucent, to give them an effect slightly different from the original. I kinda like it, but obviously it will look better on the full photos, which I'll only post when I finally send the finished piece off to Olivier. Which might be tomorrow! All I have to finish refining are the highlights...

Monday, December 27, 2010

Late 80s Nostalgia

My friend Justin posted a nostalgic video on Facebook earlier tonight, and as a result, I ended up sorting through old music videos, looking at things from the 80s and early 90s. I got really nostalgic (and more than a bit sad at some points). One of the videos I watched was an old Boy George video, the title of which I forget right now. But it had a look that was so very early 90s, that I thought I'd draw one of the hairstyles that was so typical back then. Interestingly enough, the other hairstyles weren't too dated looking, save for this one. And even then, it wasn't that bad.

The face looks rather weird, but I kinda like how stylized it is.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Before The Snow, Storm

Arrived home Christmas night, after a nearly sleepless night where I seemed to concentrate way too much on wondering what I've done with my life. I suppose that's the effect hanging out with 21 year olds may have on some, i.e. me. Anyhow, I was exhausted and more than a tad nostalgic, so I decided to draw an old version of the X-men character Storm, but I didn't get to finish it. I was hoping to finish it the next day but with the snowstorm that hit, I got distracted and ... well, I'll write that up in the next entry.

(Not) Sleeping in a strange place...

I stayed over at my friend Greg's sister's house in NJ two nights ago for Christmas Eve, hence the late posting. I didn't have access to anything beyond a scrap sheet on the desk in my room, and my hands actually hurt too much to actually draw (I blame this damn antibiotic that seems to affect your joints. Ugh.) So this is all I've got. Not even a great version of Zenaida... ah well. It was a nice Christmas Eve...

Friday, December 24, 2010

Have a Zenaida Holiday!

I got such a kick out of drawing Zenaida again I decided to do another one. She's so easy to draw, all round, scratchy lines and that big ol' smile of hers. Throughout my life I've had characters I've drawn over and over again, and revisiting her (she's 20 years old now, maybe 21!) is always fun.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hefty Holidays

One of the artists whose blog I follow, Kyle Webster, who is a master of minimalist line, posted a Happy Holidays image that reminded me a lot of LeRoy Neiman's Femlin, who is part of the inspiration behind Zenaida, so I thought I'd do a Zenaida version of his Happy Holidays drawing. :)


Last night I spend several hours baking holiday cookies for my doctors and friends at Rainer's boyfriend Daniel's place, so I was kinda tuckered out by the time I got home. All I wanted to do was watch anime, and not draw, especially not on the computer. For whatever reason, I think I've really been hitting my stylus hard, because both my thumb and forefinger are getting callouses from the stylus! Anyhow, I grabbed a really soft pencil and tried to draw the villain in Bleach, Aizen, but lost interest when it still hurt to hold the pencil!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bridal Sketch, Again

Ugh, is this what I have to do? This old school perception of what a fashion illustration looks like? Shades of Danilo Franco and that ubiquitous open mouth popularized by Renen Gruau, but dumbed down by talentless hacks (me). Ugh...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Dan and his friend Heron

Dan and his friend Heron admire the artwork at Sotheby's.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Gelling Together

Sploosh time. Yes, it can get boring for the viewer here, but it's a ton of work. Although I came upon some accidental effects tonight that might push this piece to a different level from the previous one, yet still seem like a perfectly legitimate transition. Gotta work it out, though. In the meantime, I'm just plugging away cleaning up the edges...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Bridal Sketch

So, I'm doing yet another 'fashion' illustration poster, this time for a bride, and it's really annoying, because it's really, yet again, lifestyle. I hate the way the word Fashion is bandied about when they really mean Lifestyle. But since I'm designing the poster, I might as well provide the image. But I really need to find a visual language for this company and steer them away from 'fashion' since it's not really a fashion company.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Fashion Strokes

I was thinking tonight about how the pendulum changes so much for me, how certain looks I favor one season are totally gone the next, and I'm left with a closet full of clothing that's completely viable for other people, but not for what I want to wear. I'm favoring looks that are a little bit more loose, more colorful, and less of the drapey, goth and edgy pieces that I spent so much time gathering in the previous phase. I feel like I have to wear those clothes just for the hell of it... and because they were so expensive... when all I want to do is acquire a completely new wardrobe...!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Gym Guy: Pretty Girl, part next

Something about this sketch just isn't right yet, so I tried pulling in Pretty Girl's dark olive color in hopes sparking some inspiration on how to properly render him. I guess I'll have to wait until I see him at the gym again. I did alter his face into that more peanut shape he has, but there's something off about his mouth that I can't quite place my finger on...

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Gym Gal: The Beast, Done

It's really hard to study people's features at the gym without seeming rude or confrontational. I keep stealing glances at The Beast today, trying to ascertain what features I need to change to make it look more like her, while at the same time seeming nonchalant. I wasn't so good as to just commit the changes to memory, so I pulled out a slip of paper from my wallet and tested a few line changes. Notice how different she is from the first attempts? I'm pretty happy with this, so, The Beast is done!

I did steal a few glances at Pretty Girl too, but he was on to me, so I played it cool. I did do some improvements on his drawing though, and will look for him another day to study his features more.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Splooshed Part 2

Okay, getting a groove on. Actually working on the vector parts of this after redrawing and re-laying out the composition, and trying to build in a bit more volume beyond the flat fields I did in the original. So tedious, though...

Monday, December 13, 2010


It was raining most of today so it's appropriate that I get back with the splooshes from my work on the Whim photos. There's quite a few stages to do on this still to clean it up for reproduction, and part of the problem is I know that my 'client' plans on enlarging the images so every. single. detail. will be seen. So it's slow going as I trace and retrace... it's really more design work at this point, although I am painting in color fields for shading. Still, there's a very sunny Heron pic waiting in the (no pun intended) wings in case I deem all this "wetwork" as insufficient for a post (although they're both related to the same person).

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Gym Gal: The Beast, continued

I didn't see her at the gym today so I went about cleaning up her sketch a bit. Maybe I'll see her tomorrow and finalize it soon...

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Gym Gal: The Beast

I ran into my friend PJ at the gym and told him about my doing sketches of people at the gym, and he thought it was a fun idea. So next in the series (I need to see Pretty Girl again and study his face a bit more to really nail his features) is a woman I dubbed, The Beast. She's apparently really nice, but the reason for her nickname is she works out like an animal! She does things that more than half of the men in the gym can't do, and she's amazing. I think I pretty much got her general look but I'm gonna make sure again next time I'm at the gym before I finalize her and color her. PJ agreed that she's basically a cartoon character altogether, so I'm picking off the easiest peo[le first before proceeding into the more obscure ones.

This is kinda fun.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Gym Guy: Pretty Girl

There's a guy at my gym who is the opposite of everything I'd want to draw, and as a result, he's kind of easy to draw... and spot. He's bulky without having much definition, and he has a penchant for wearing spaghetti-strap, racer-back women's camisoles as workout gear, presumably because he can't find menswear items that he deems will amply show off his chest. It's quite appalling, actually, as the straps tend to have a way of getting caught by his exposed nipples. Why am I calling him Pretty Girl? One day I opened up one of the lockers I normally use, and it was empty except for a clothing tag left on its floor. The brand logo read "Pretty Girl." I knew exactly who had left it there.

This is last night's post since I was having internet access issues and couldn't log on to update my blog.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Gym Guy: Mr. Sharp, done

It's kinda amazing to me sometimes how a drawing can proceed so quickly if you have a clear enough idea in your head. Because "Mr.Sharp" has such distinct features, I knew what I was going for with every line. I think he'd make a good realistic portrait as well. Anyhow, I might continue with this series - there are quite a few characters at my gym, some as good-looking as this guy (I realize now he kinda has JFK Jr. hair) and others, well... not so much.

Gym Guy: Mr.Sharp

Continuing my observations of people at my gym, there's a young guy at my gym with am amazing physique, but more importantly, he's got really sharp features. He's got a full head of hair that's styled in an almost 80s bouffant, ruddy cheeks, narrow dark eyes and a sharp long face. So distinct his features are just begging me to make a cartoon character out of him!

Unfortunately I was drawing this late at night and my antibiotics (damn throat infection) kicked in, and for some reason I got a headache. So I went quickly to bed without finishing it.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Pia and her friend Heron

Pia and her friend Heron had gotten almost uncomfortably close.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Brian... Done?

I decided to remove the color and just finish this portrait in black and white. I think it resembles the model more. But I also turn on the color underlayer and it looks fine, but something about it bugs me. Perhaps it's because I don't really know Brian that well, but I feel like there's something about his features that I'm not getting just so. Anyhow, I think the black and white version serves it well, but the color, well, not so much. In any case, I think this is done!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Gym Guy: The All American Teen Hero

There's a guy at my gym who looks like the perfect comic book character. I dunno - he's like the perfect young All American who is somewhat nondescript, but good-looking enough to get the girl without having everyone think he's good-looking from the get go (you know, so he can have a character arc? Hah!). I didn't notice him much to begin with, but I realized his features were...well... so perfectly normal, so he kinda grew on me. Symmetrical face, slightly upturned nose, sandy blond, maybe blue eyes - not as extreme as many of the other characters at my gym (I'm sure I'm considered one of them, though maybe not in a good way). He's constantly just doing his thing, getting his grueling workout done, and is in and out of the gym without chatting with anyone. Every time I see him at the gym, I can't help but stare and try to study his facial features. I think he would make the perfect everyman type of character. He'd make a perfect young Alex Summers from X-men - Havok always seemed like someone who needed to be good-looking, but not too striking. He probably thinks I'm a perv.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Kitty Break

Still preoccupied with online shopping so really didn't have any inspiration to draw. Have a kitty.

Friday, December 3, 2010


I completely forgot to draw something and remembered right before bed, so I just rushed this one out.

Thursday, December 2, 2010


This is a new version of a drawing I used to paint on tee shirts back in college. Well, the beginnings of it at least. It's of a traditional Japanese geisha, but with a manic smile. You know those geisha drawing, they're always so serene and stoic. Well, not this one. Her smile is actually based on my own, but the weird thing was, when I drew it, it totally turned into a caricature of my dear departed mom. I always did thought I inherited her smile. Okay, well, it wasn't always as crazed as this is...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sploosh Redux Part Deux

They certainly don't look like I'm doing much work, but I suppose that's the graphic design part taking over because I think I'm art directing as much as drawing. There's a very specific movement I look for when I create these swirl compositions, just like I do when I make fabric or explosion drawings. It's all very Mucha by way of comics via anime in my head. And there's a lot of erasing and redrawing going on to get the feeling just so... which is why these things take a while... and don't necessarily make the most interesting posts. Ah well, hopefully the end result is worth it.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sploosh Redux

Aaand here we go again with the splooshes...

Monday, November 29, 2010

Eyes All Aglow

My friend Dan posted some Children of the Corn type photo of kids with the caption, "tiny tots with their eyes all aglow..." which made me think of comicbook energy eyes, especially since I just watched (and rewatched) "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World" last night. So this comicbook power-up look is courtesy of all that.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Didi and her friend Heron

Didi and her friend Heron didn't end up playing Hide and Seek for very long.

Friday, November 26, 2010

On A Whim. Again.

I completely forgot to post the finished Whim W'Him piece. Since the company already posted the pics online, I can now post them in totality as well. So, here it is:

And here's the next one I'm working on. Still figuring out if it will be the same feeling or if I should up the ante a bit...

Both photos were taken by the very talented Marc von Borstel.


Dita Von Teese appeared in Bravo's The Fashion Show this week, and I wanted to do a quick sketchy-sketch of her from the show because I just watched it on iTunes, plus I'm still a bit lacking in energy to do anything too involved...

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Gobble Gobble

In celebration of Thanksgiving, I present Zenaida, looking good enough to eat. Well, okay, I just had this sultry pose in mind and thought I'd figure up a holiday tie-in.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

New Tablet Test

Whenever I go work for a new company, I always request a Wacom tablet for my work Mac. Since no one else uses them in the office now that I work from home, I took home the newer model and replaced my 10 year old one. Man, I didn't know what I was missing! With almost twice the pressure sensitivity of my older one, this one was so much easier to sketch with - there was no lag time like I'd been experiencing lately, which I never seemed to notice before. Seriously, this was a quantum improvement! This was a 7 minute sketch based on a photo I downloaded as a reference.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Melissa and her friend Heron

Melissa and her friend Heron can't seem to find each other.

Scooter and his friend Heron

Scooter and his friend Heron spy each other through the sheer window panel.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


I'm clearly not thinking creatively lately. Or maybe too much so.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Help Yours Elf

I had to create a holiday promo to add an additional 20% discount to purchases made during certain weeks this holiday, so we came up with little coupons branded, "Help Yours Elf." I asked my designer to look for a good elf pic but then decided it would be far easier and quicker to just draw her one (which took less than 10 minutes). They seemed to like it.

Ships Big Image 2

I tried to flesh out yesterday's sketch a bit more, but didn't bring up the original reference piece. I think something got lost in translation...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Ships Big Image

I've been shopping Ships, a Japanese shop, online. I'm so familiar with the models they use since I've been shopping the site for weeks now. One model is their 'edgy' guy, with long hair and a lanky (well, they're all kinda lanky) figure. This particular pose got my attention when I clicked on the "Big Image" product enlargement feature, so I thought I'd do a really quick sketch of the pose. I think this must've taken about 15 minutes. It looks a bit feminine, but I think the Japanese actually like their men to be a bit more androgynous. Or maybe that's just my impression.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Have Yourself A Real Good Time the phrase that played on my iTunes while I was drawing Zenaida, and she certainly looks like she's having fun! I thought it 's been a while and I should trot out my Venus of the Rice again...

Monday, November 15, 2010


Today is day two in my post-creative letdown, after the other day's completion of my design project, so all I'm doing is online shopping. Again. Which leads to me thinking of men's fits, which resulted in this very general men's croquis.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Rinna, Sir Ollie and their friend Heron

Rinna, Sir Ollie and their friend Heron have themselves a snuggle.