Monday, September 30, 2013

About A Boy

I better start this one. In the past few weeks I've made the acquaintance of a slew of male models, and have acquired personal models for future work. I've almost got too many lined up (although I always have too many pieces up in the air, being juggled at the same time) but when I work with a model it's usually an added impetus to finish the work, because then I feel a responsibility to them. So this is Andy.

Max Von Isser in Robert Geller AW13

I never DID publish the fully realized layout for Max here, so without further ado.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Pose-ibilities 2

I have a former model from 6 years ago in from California, and he's gotten so beefy that I'm not sure how to photograph him for a sketch, but I'm leaning towards the highly sexualized. It's hard to come to a session with a firm idea of what you want sometimes, because you don't know how the model will look. Like with Max, the best shots chose themselves, so it changed the tone of the original planned poses. But I suppose it doesn't hurt to do my homework first.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Face Time 8

Last bit to do on this portrait is fix the hair up for the layout since I'm including graphic elements. I seldom really mix my graphic design and illustration sensibilities, I often keep them very separate. You'd think it would be advantageous for me to combine them, but the illustrator part of me wants to keep every detail I draw, while the graphic designer wants to crop things creatively, even if those parts might be the parts that illustrator me wants to feature. So you can imagine the confusion.

Anyhow, will post this later tonight after I get back from dinner.

Edit: I ended up posting it the next day, but You get the picture (in a manner of speaking).

Friday, September 27, 2013

Face Time 7

One more day oughta do it, but it's turned out well, methinks. I'm taking a break from it to refresh my eyes and hopefully see what needs improving tomorrow before I submit it to the publisher.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Face Time 6

I don't think this face is going to get much more attention as it has to be done this week! Butt definitely seeing the finish line to this piece soon. Well, I hope. You never know with us perfectionists.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Queer Man's Erotic Drawing Salon 2013

****Beware of uncensored male nudity!****

But it's not that bad, just, you know, manparts. Although notably low hanging manparts.

I think the last time I went was in 2012! But I wanted just to draw, and hopefully do something more classic, but I forgot about the frenetic pace and desire to get something good out. The first few were definitely throwaway pieces but by the time I got to the 20 minute ones I was getting more of a stride.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Storm Rumblings

There's a contest online to redesign Storm's costume. I've done that so many times I've lost count. At the very least I'd kick myself if I didn't try, so while I don't have the creative energy, I'm doodling to help get me in the mood.

Monday, September 23, 2013


I've got another piece I need to finish, all about the shade from the brim of a hat.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Face Time 5

More workings of that portrait that needs doing...and finishing! Making progress little by little when the mood suits me, and as it gets more done, the mood just suits me more!

Face Time 4

I'm moving forward fairly quickly with this, although I have to say last night I dropped the bal because I was hanging out with a new model, Andy, who is at the end of his visit to NYC before he goes back off to Europe. Hanging out with kids less than half my age reminds me of how I've always been one to take care of displaced visitors, something that goes back to the time when I was their age and I felt lost in translation. So this is making up for getting caught in a torrential downpour and getting home last night too late to post.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Face Time 3

Working more on this portrait. I hate the fact that I'm working from a standard released press photo but I thought of a way to spin in while I was working out at the gym. image coming soon.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Faint Rumblings of a Storm

Sometimes I like the fluidity of a few suggestive lines. Often I render things to an unfortunate stiffness. So I might just leave this sketch as is.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Face Time 2

Working a little more on this 3rd part of the previous commission. Ugh, it all feels like it's non-stop! It's especially hard since this is another portrait of someone whose face I'm not at all familiar with, the designer J.W. Anderson. Starting out rough and walking away a lot, because I'm not finding my groove on it yet...

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Taking It In

... a little off the shoulders, nipped in the waist a bit. I performed some tailoring on the outfit I worked on all night last night because it was looking BIG. Like old fashioned big, not modern boxy silhouette big. So even if the original I based it on looked closer to the original rendering, I decided to go with an aesthetic. Didn't want it to look like I didn't know how to render a current looking jacket!

Monday, September 16, 2013


I spent about an hour adding textural details like the rib of the wool oversweater (I think I just coined a new word!) as well as the plaid neck piece. Also added shadows and cleaned up details that looked off when I combined the two images together. It's coming along! I had always planned for 3 figures, but no I'm wondering if I even need another?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Repositioning 5

Aand I'm redrawing the jacket. I don't know why it's become such a production to do this one, perhaps because I had such a strong ambitious image in my head, but it far exceeds the basis for it. I think I imagined I would make it all fit in a nice composition, but as I work on the actual clothing featured, I'm realizing how dense it is, and while density of detail is an Antonio trait... it might not be mine.


I had a day off just doing what I wanted today, so it slipped by me that I forgot to post what I painted today (also I had some wine. And tequila. Not in that order.) Anyhow, this was something I painted this afternoon. I should have posted it on the day itself, but like I said, I did what I wanted, when I wanted.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Kenshin and his friend Heron

Kenshin and his friend Heron bonded over their mutual love of quirky eyewear.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Repositioning 4

I can't leave it alone!! I redid the hair which wasn't necessarily in the technique I wanted. This is getting more and more rendered, and I'm thinking of ways to pull back, even if it's after the fact. But I'm definitely in a painting groove just getting max's face in order. My camera is so low rez it wasn't great at capturing details in the darker sections, so I'm actually going into multiple photos online to get a sense of his bone structure, and extrapolating from there. For some reason, even if the positions are different, it seems to be working. Somewhat.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Face Time

Time to work on a new portrait. And I'm talking just barely!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Repositioning 3

I think one of the biggest things I got from going to the Stavrinos exhibit opening last Friday (George Stavrinos was one of my illustration idols in my youth - and still is) was not to be afraid to redraw. Stavrinos apparently made so many finished studies that in lesser hands (like mine!) would be considered finished work. But I'm unhappy with how my former portrait of Max works with the background one (the profile, which I'm quite pleased with) so I've spent most of today reworking Max's photos in Photoshop to get a position I like. Not only have I redone the body and hand positions (yesterday), now I'm redoing the face as well. It should be right.

Edit: I was going to post my updated facial position, but I retouched the old face a lot and am now uncertain about where to go: completely new, or rework the old one until it works? Ugh, choices.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Repositioning 2

Honestly, I've been at this for hours and hours! I suppose my method is a bit backward, always retrofitting head positions because of portraits already made, trying to reconcile it all with the original plan which would have been hard enough without a model. Anyhow, I decided the pose involves Max putting his gloves on, and nuances like how the body is turned - whether full frontal or slightly angled - may just have to evolve as I paint.

Sunday, September 8, 2013


I'm so happy with the back position that adding in the front position is problematic. It works in the scheme of the trio I have planned, but not in terms of the actual clothing being featured. I need to rethink it a bit more... and try new iterations. It's kind of nerve-wracking because I like the original position more when I render it more completely, so the dissonance might be a function of the rendering and how my eye is not responding to it properly. But if I finish it entirely first then don't find it fits properly... I'll have to fix even more. You'd think with layers in Photoshop it'd be easier, right? People used to and still do compose everything in real media! I'm a big baby.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Manara Mouth

I was having dinner with a couple of people I met coming home from a fashion show earlier tonight, and one of the male models was telling me about how he loved Milo Manara's work. While I'm not in the same league as Manara, I do appreciate his beautifully sensual women. I told Andrea how I know Manara's women from the way they pout. So I thought that would be the starting point for a quick sketch tonight. But I'm not feeling it tonight - this sketch is terrible!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Mad For Max 19

I tried to compose my piece and the techniques didn't match up, so I went back into another I had thought done, and am retooling it. I'm anxious to release it but I got some great advice from one of my illustration idols, Mel Odom, earlier this evening at an art opening: Don't put it out there until it's as close to perfect as you want it. And while I do release snippets here, I'll take that advice on the finished piece even if I really wanted to release it this weekend.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Mad For Max 18

I think I'm nearing the finish line for this one... it's on to rendering the actual fashion he's wearing. I'm much like current fashion illustrators - I'm obsessed with the model face... 18 Max posts later.

I'm loving the gloves in this. I didn't really have references so I kinda winged it!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Mad For Max 17

Are we tired of these yet? After doing the clothing, I realized the pencil work on the face wasn't u to snuff, so I spent a little time refining the portrait some more (like I didn't work on Max enough -!). But I'm quite happy with how he looks - it really reminds me of teh Antonio profiles I grew up loving, but it's an homage because I can say my watercolors are less like him and more unique to me (they're a bit muddier to be honest, and once upon a time I valued Antonio's clarity, but it feels good to have your own style gravitate toward it AND be happy with it! It only took a FEW DECADES... jeez... haha!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


I've been laboring since before Labor day, because it seems all my accounts needed stuff done at the same time. And I've got a headache now... or maybe it's a sinus thing, who knows...

Monday, September 2, 2013

Mad For Max 16

16!  I don't know if I've done 16 posts about a series. But then again, Max has at least 4 drawings I'm doing of him (oh shit, there's a couple more I need to do - maybe 5 or 6 in total). But I always have to get the portrait done first then worry about the rest of it. This is me worrying about the line of the clothing. And I do, because too many 'fashion illustrators' nowadays just do the face of a model and the clothing is an afterthought... which seems odd if it's supposed to be about the clothes.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Mad For Max 15

Okay well after doing the laundry, I was redrew the line work. I know this doesn't look it but I did redraw the figure a lot, especially extending the arms and clarifying the clothing details (and the shape of the hat). It's just it doesn't necessarily seem different, but the important thing I needed to accomplish was really set the figure right, but still make the lines look like I haphazardly sketched them quickly, so it does look quite similar. Well, at least in this detail I've posted.