February 28, 2011

The Plan: Part 2

I had a big weekend when it comes to art, largely thanks to my kid's 3.5 hour nap yesterday! (I kind of woke her up at the end because I missed her, breaking my never wake a baby rule!) I downloaded a trial copy of Adobe Illustrator in preparation for an assignment to do a logo. I love the basic concept of vector illustration – how artwork can scale up in size without losing anything – but the building block approach irritates me. I feel like I'm waltzing with my drawing when I'd rather make love to it.

I also realized that I had completed my artwork plan!
Farewell, Plan 1
  • I did "lots of art, anything." And I had taken "any art job, even unpaid."
  • I had gone over all of my artwork and selected a portfolio, then updated my website. 
  • I researched publications that might be suitable for my work
  • I looked into art schools and their admission requirements -- and, even though it wasn't the plan, I met with one and got admitted with advanced standing!
  • I started drawing every day on the bus, launched this blog and founded a creative action group, NONE of which were part of the plan.
So, here's my new plan. I'm scared already!
  • Do art. Anything. Lots of it! Get my work out there.
  • Redo my website in html.
  • Keep up my blog. Get to know the Ottawa art scene, and become part of its online community.
  • Analyze how I can move into an art career: jobs, timing, feasibility with a second baby, feasibility of going back to school. Consult a financial planner.
  • Design and print promotional card(s).
  • Research more publications, online and print, to pitch my illustration to. Send out the cards to 10 art directors/creative editors.
  • Research agents. Send the cards to 10 agents.
  • Explore Ottawa or illustration societies. Join one.

Okay, world! I'm putting it out there. And, most importantly, taping it on my studio window. After all, it worked the first time.

February 24, 2011

Conspiracy in progress

10 Rideau (source: Ottawa Business Journal)
Drawing on the move lets me add pieces of my experiences together - two men in the lot at Albert and Kent, trees along Dalhousie, the historic building at number 10 Rideau.

I started blocking in some colour tonight to this sinister conversation using Adobe Photoshop, my go-to software for digital illustration.

The barbed wire is just for fun.

February 24, 2011 (unfinished)

February 23, 2011

Half people

February 23, 2011
For some reason I am drawing half people these days. Does this reflect my state of mind?

February 22, 2011

Speedball -- bumpy when dry!

I broke in my new sketchbook this week with a few doodles to get back to inking. Usually I use Higgins Eternal or Black Magic inks, but they were sold out at Wallack's so I bought Speedball. Oh, there is no going back. Fast dry, truly black, and bumpy when dry! Like it's embossed!
February 21-22, 2011

February 22, 2011

Here's half a lady I did on the bus today. She's not real. But that's okay.

February 18, 2011

Finished! (mostly)

After another 6 hours or so, I'm finished the painting for my friend's wedding. I'll do some touching up after ignoring it for a couple of weeks, then get it printed (I did it in Photoshop, not with actual paint) in time for the wedding.
On to other things! I can't wait to get back to my regular stuff. Those James Hart Dyke paintings are so inspiring. Yesterday I threw 75$ dollars at Wallacks, Ottawa's art store chain, and made off with four new sketchbooks and some India ink. Already I'm daydreaming about what to do next.

But happily it's 2:47 and I can go get Ada early from daycare. Yay! Tomorrow morning I have her all to myself, and with Monday being Family Day here in Canada, I get three glorious uninterrupted days with my family. 

February 17, 2011

Spy painter

I worked for 4.5 hours today on the project for a friend's wedding. I'm about half done after 2 months. Since I've got 2 months to go, everything is on track.

Earlier this week, CBC's As It Happens interviewed James Hart Dyke, who finished a series of paintings from a year spent shadowing MI6, the British spy service. It was their centenniary, so they hired him to do the work. Now he's finished, and the results are breathtaking. I've such longing, looking at these. To be a better artist. To have more time and courage to pursue the craft. To have the money to buy his works, even if just a print.

Time to go get Ada.

February 16, 2011

Art vacation

I finished my Bilateral Negotiations course yesterday and I'm now on holiday until Tuesday. Hoping to work on my art Thursday and Friday. I spent today clothes shopping with a friend, planning some decorations for my daughter's room, and hanging out at daycare with her. I didn't take a single bus. In fact, I drove Ada to and from daycare in a CAR in which we were the only occupants! With the radio on!

I am glad to get away from busses for a few days. The bus drawing prevents me from feeling like a sheep/drone (I wish I had some way of similarly defending my psyche at Loblaws. I always get out of there wild-eyed and furious convinced that I'm the worst kind of Grade seven lo-ooo-ser. What a way to spend your Friday nights.), but even so, stepping off the commuting conveyor belt is a welcome relief.

February 15, 2011

Facing away

February 15, 2011
I've been riding STO busses lately, and, unfaithful to OC Transpo as I've been, it came as no surprise to me when my ill luck with bus drawing continued into this day. Despite taking seven busses, there was so little sitting in either direction today. Much novel reading (Patricia Briggs) while standing! But, oh so little sitting. :(

Still, two gentlemen to offer you on this fine, frigid evening. Hope you are having a splendid week.

February 14, 2011

There's no negotiating with public transit

February 11, 2011
I commuted for over an hour and a half from my home to reach a training facility today. Man! I stood for 48 minutes at Terrasses de la Chaudiere in Gatineau waiting for a bus. FORTY-EIGHT MINUTES! I could have been on a bus DRAWING!! Alas, I spent these precious moments wincing as people slipped along the icy sidewalk. One woman did fall, but rose back up, undeterred, and continued running on her way. I like that kind of spirit, even if it isn't sensible!

Anyway, I'm in a bilateral negotiation workshop, and it's hugely thrilling. However, getting back to the thing you're here for: there was little drawing today. Despite all the commuting, I didn't get a lot o' sit-down time. So here is one from last week.

It reminds me of obsolete world somehow. Isn't Jeannie Paske's imagination delicious?

February 10, 2011

Little postage stamps

None of these drawings from the last week exactly worked out, but I always respond to the appeal of a collection of pictures. They benefit from the quantity, even if they're weak alone.
The guy on the bottom left cheered me up with his cap and pushed-up sunglasses. He hasn't forgotten summer. On the bottom right, the sad-looking woman - who wasn't sad-looking in real life, that's just my ineptitude - was reading Kelley Armstrong's "Stolen." The middle lady really sat as rigidly as that, but she wasn't so unfriendly-seeming as I accidentally made her out to be.

February 9, 2011

Resource centre strikes

February 9, 2011
Today the Resource Centre maven casually asked me if I was receiving the e-mails confirming my use of the centre, "because we're tracking everything now." I guess it's his way of telling me that he knows my drawings aren't for work, that he's watching me?

This drawing represents about the height of realism I can manage in a 10-20 minute window. I'd like to probe more deeply, have people sit for my pictures for longer, so I can infuse some more personality into the pictures.

The book is Jodi Picoult's "House Rules."

February 7, 2011

Faceless woman finds great handbag

February 7, 2011
That bag belonged to a different bus rider this morning, but that's no excuse for the wildly long legs, is it?

It looks like I forgot to draw her face, but the truth is that she was looking way off to her right and that's the side of it. Still, the facelessness reminds me of Kate Kelton's art. I went to school with Kate, and have been admiring her work for years now.

February 6, 2011

Vicarious art appreciation: Go to this show, Toronto, and then report back, please!

Scott Caple = neat art. Check out this gallery of Incredibles layouts. And then, on the clean opposite end of the spectrum, these knights!

"OK, it's my turn. I am having a SHOW in Downtown Toronto , at the Toronto Cartoonists Workshop, 486 College St. / Friday Feb. 25 / 7-11. It 's going to be a show of layout and design work from past projects I've worked on -Incredibles, Hunchback, the Bluth movies, maybe even some Nelvana stuff - plus some personal work. Some will be original , some won't. But there WILL be refreshments and good conversation. And signed prints for sale! "

Stolen from Scott's Facebook page via a mutual Facebook friend and artisan blacksmith, Darrell Markewitz.

February 4, 2011

Wish I'd chosen somewhere else to write notes

Last week treated me well. Many heaven-sent bus drawing experiences. This woman stared down at her handheld phone thing, never looking up, not two feet away for quite a while. 
January 28, 2011

This week, the commuters are acting up. Jumpy as rabbits. Settle down folks, I'm drawing here!

February 2, 2011

Ottawa bluster

A stormy night in Ottawa -- much snow, long commutes today, which, apart from the family time I lost, suits this blogger perfectly. Well, except the part about how snow days herd drivers onto busses. My rides were jampacked today!

February 2, 2011
Ever notice how snowy sunsets are mauve?

February 1, 2011

Sadly sick, so simply

a little quotation from The Imagineering Way, by the Disney Imagineers, which I'm re-reading:

The world belongs to the dogged, the persistent, the passionate. And to have that kind of persistence, you have to be in love with the idea. Learn all about it, so you can find what there is to love about it. Love the material, make it your own.
-David Mumford, Imagineer