Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Chalk It Up

I was inspired by yesterday's sketch to see more chalk renderings, particularly with the stroke on a woman's cheek. But starting with the rendering details doesn't guarantee you a good face...!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Ernie's Abs

My former trainer and I met for drinks earlier this evening, and he was showing me how ripped he's gotten lately. It's kind of insane. We're thinking of some ab-centric photoshoot soon.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Mad For Max 12

I'm much happier with the face and now need to get started on completing this. Still have to decide if I'm doing anything more interesting with the figures than just composing them into a 3-up layout like I started.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Mad For Max 11

It's always good to see progress in your work. It spurs me to continue, and to feel like the completion is - while not very necessarily near - attainable. And what's funny is what I see in front of me isn't even exactly what I envisioned, but it takes its own shape. Max is very stylized (I did make his face a bit sharper, which may need adjustment), but I think it kinda looks like him.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Shady Lady

I thought I'd practice a bit with my graphite shading brush on something I have no qualms about experimenting with - Zenaida! I didn't learn anything new except that one of my "Cover Brushes" looks too wet to use as pencil lines (as in the hair - it looks like marker to me).

Friday, July 26, 2013

Mad For Max 10

I'm torn between making sure I get a likeness and making it as expressive as I prefer. I'm going for a 20s kind of look, so a bit foppish.

Composing 2

I redid the quick layout for the commission I'm working on. It's not much, but it does allow me to plan better. And as much as it's very rough, I got in so late from dinner and a Warby Parker event that I didn't have time to draw properly so I'm using the sketch form today's presentation for my post. :)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Rainer 9

Sometimes you don't want to plan you just want to draw. So I'm switching gears back to my portrait of my friend. There's something about just vegging out and drawing without thinking, because I don't have to compose or anything, just look, and paint what I see. Plus the more I do that I'm satisfied with, the more I do, the more I get a piece I'm excited to see finished. This one is looking really pop-painterly (kinda like those giant painted movie billboards we used to see lining the streets of Manila...

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Pencil Test 3

I'm really feeling like doing a more graphite approach again, so I need to just make sure I can do the look I want, but digitally. Specifically here, shaded backgrounds that are smooth, but also retain a bit of hand. I'm quite happy with these brushes!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Pencil Test 2

Trying to see if I can do what I used to do when I was aping George Stavrinos, but with these new digital brushes. I'd be happy if I can at least develop my own digital graphite look. So far, this is like a merge of a lot of my influences: Stavrinos' graphite approach, Kevin Nowlan/Mel Odom's spaced out expressions, and a bit of modern shading around the nose (I'm thinking a lot of comic book artists). I wonder though if his facial shape is dated? Like I should do someone more Slavic-looking and softer (because he's looking a bit 80s Bruce Weber to me). I'm trying to do someone somewhat feminine, because the collection I want to draw in this style plays off femininity...

Sunday, July 21, 2013

George and his friend Heron

George and his friend Heron were frequent artistic collaborators, as evidenced in George's most recent work.

Saturday, July 20, 2013


I'm planning several compositions at once, for two different projects, and even if I had a firm idea for one, it's affecting the other and now they're kind of becoming something else together. Gonna try and go to more composed pieces (also, going to try and finish them!)

Friday, July 19, 2013

Pencil Test

This eye turned out nicely. I observed how artist Diego Fernandez does his eyes, and with the new brushes I reconfigured, tried to include some of his techniques into my own style. This new brush does look like a soft pencil shade... and aside from stealing Diego's highlight style rendering in the pupil, this eye was just drawn from memory, so pretty happy with it.

Why am I testing pencil brushes in Photoshop? For the possible commission, I'm thinking of aping a Stavrinos graphite rendering, so I googled up Photoshop pencil brushes and started experimenting with a few. So far it looks promising, but I'll have to test them out more.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Tequila Indulgence

It's more like indulge my perfunctory sketch because I had too much tequila tonight.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Costume Planning 2

This is tricky but fun. I have to compose each figure's outfit based on how best to show off the clothing AND look good as a drawing, then relate them all together. I'm getting a very 1920s gentleman vibe from the poses and styling, which is kinda where Robbie's collection went (1920s Berlin, methinks). It's complex composition I'm not used to but hopefully it will be useful for future work.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Rainer 8

A bit more painting, and removing a lot of the original linework.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Waiting In Line

I went to Dig Inn after watching a movie with my friend Justin, and while I thought I might try to draw some robots (we had watched Pacific Rim - fun!), I was intrigued with the stance of the guy waiting in line for food. He had that look of some of the croquis I drew earlier (especially the Japanese ones) and I loved the way his legs were positioned,a nd really visibe in his jeans. While I've drawn this before from photos, I wanted to study the pose (as well as the folds in his jeans) and recreate it from memory.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Rainer 7

I never really did eyes as well as I think I should. I sorta just fell back on shortcuts I saw other artists do, but never devised the form for myself. I'm going to try and do that, as I see many young artists with a firm grasp on the shades and levels of transparency that I envy.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Fabric Flow

A possible new commission has clothing that features stiffer tops and fluid bottoms. I immediately got a sense of a 70s bell-bottom style illustration, with a Charlie by Revlon kind of stride, but with no confidence, to make it more modern. Hard to decide what the final take might be...

Friday, July 12, 2013


...about saving a space just so I know I have an entry today, versus wondering if I can even sketch on the Mac with this stiff neck...

edit 07.13.13: Well, it looks like the neck is better, and coincidentally, I drew the nape of a woman's neck. I was on the train last night and I was observing the patterns in a fellow passengers hair. She had her hair in a loose twisted bun, and I liked following the flow of strands. I wish my own stroke were more precise when I did hair like this, but I didn't necessarily want to labour over this.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Stiff Neck

Apparently I've been spending too much time craning my neck at the computer! And in other news, I apparently identify myself as a somewhat afro-american, mixed race woman.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Costume Planning

I know he set them all out on the runway for me just to choose from, but I need to sort out the three (or subsets thereof) outfits that would work best together in the poses I've worked out. Kind of backwards, but maybe that's why I've been avoiding it so much - didn't really know what elements to start with!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Some worrisome developments have been bugging me since Saturday, and I'm still trying to wrap my head around them...

So I went back to my Red drawing because there was something about the right arm (well, his right arm) that didn't sit well with me, so I went in and defined it a little further - not too much but just enough. Little things make a big difference when you're close to finalziing an idea, and part of that meant adding more detail to the top because I felt I really needed to crop off below the waistline. The whole point for me is to emphasize his red hair, both on his head and on his pubes, yet diffusing it into the whole graphic. I much prefer the focus off this crop as the silhouette of the figure becomes more important- as does his crotch hair - because all the drawing of his hands and underwear were, well, distracting (and detracting).

Monday, July 8, 2013


It's not just me, but every artist it seems can't help but tinker. There's always something that should be drawn/done better/different. My friend Ridge, a talented illustrator in his own right, just posted about a drawing he couldn't leave well enough alone recently, so I feel I'm in good company. And you might not see the changes but it's how the hair is arranged, some of the shading was refined, a few details added to the sweater, that sort of thing.

Fluffy Colored

Something happened in the last 30 minutes while I was drawing, and I kept on taking a few more risks and made changes that weren't part of the original plan, and I liked what happened quite a bit. It's not the way I've been drawing lately, but it's still me. It looks like what my drawing style could look like if I still liked drawing comics. He went from fashionimé (hmm, that should be a category) to undead zombie model. I kinda feel a bit of a twinge of regret when I write that - I never did get to do a comic book and I wonder at the back of my mind if I will always wonder what that is like?

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fluffy 2

I thought I'd go back to Max, but I seem to be avoiding that series for fear of needing to finish it (which I do need to do). But... but... his bangs are soo fluffed!  Heh. I couldn't help drawing him - there was no pressure with this drawing, plus I wanted to see how I might render it. Not too bad for a throwaway sketch. This is the kind of guy I think who shows up in Japanese anime. That hair is sooo done/undone.

Saturday, July 6, 2013


I got it in my head to draw a sketch of a young guy with fluffy bangs. But now I have to make sure that he doesn't look too feminine (that expression needs to be butched up a bit), or that he looks like a certain young pop star whose name I do NOT want to invoke in my blog!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Red Hot 7

I think we're done. I rotated and cropped, as well as added a few more details, especially to his baggy boxer shorts which weren't reading properly. Hopefully I can move forward and finish up the rest of the series soon!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Red Hot 6

I had to go do a little more on one of my other projects. I'm a bit stymied still by my Maxxing out. So here's one of Michael, and I'm going to wait until tomorrow to make sure, but I think this one is just about done.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Palate Cleanser

I've been Maxxing out a bit much, and I'm still int eh phase where the sketches aren't really worth looking at, especially since they're very preliminary. So I thought it best to give the Max sketches a break and introduce a chocolate palate cleanser.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Mad For Max 9

And my Max-imizing continues. I need to find a way that I just draw him without resorting to photo-based portraiture. He's certainly got the features to sketch just from memory. And I'm still having a difficult time capturing him in this pose. And to pinoys out there, doesn't he look like Jose Rizal??

Monday, July 1, 2013

Mad For Max 8

Trying to fill out all the positions in my composition. This isn't much of a likeness at all, but it should get there later. This is a particularly great expression he has too - very intense. I hope I do it right.