January 25, 2012

Angry cameo

January 24, 2012

I am getting foiled a lot this week. People are jumpy, and I have had to halt some drawings. I flirt with the idea of just showing them their portraits, but I like keeping them to myself and the Internet.

I'm having a better week than last time I wrote. Now all three of my buddies expecting babies have safely delivered their wee ones, and all having emerged safe and mostly unscathed. Just me left :) Two-and-a-half months to go.

What will I draw when I'm not taking the bus every day? Bus Blog is more than a year old now, with more than two hundred drawings. I'm ready for something new. The next portraits might be set in libraries and shopping malls, and anywhere else where I can lug a newborn baby. And, one can hope, I dream of longer projects. Of painting again. Oh I miss painting so much.

January 23, 2012


January 23, 2012
I was surprised I managed this drawing today. I'm so tired. Typical pregnancy insomnia, but after so many weeks of broken sleeping, I can't get my brain to do its job. Today, tip-toeing across a mile of bobsled-slick sidewalks, I reached a major intersection a few blocks from my house. Nine emergency vehicles dotted the intersection; a taut-faced cop directed traffic. Rain poured. My hair was streaming, my face was streaming. Obviously something terrible had happened (I'll spare you what I later learned). I started to cry. Why did we have to get rain in January?

Earlier this week I learned that Ottawa is among the coldest capitals in the world. Perhaps 7th, depending on  the type of index used.

I need some rest.

January 21, 2012

Twice lucky

January 20, 2012

Another baby showed up during rush hour this week! She looks a bit too adult-like, because switching gears is challenging when I draw adults or trees as a rule. I did most of it from memory because her mother seemed a bit too aware of me for my taste. The little thing on her forehead (top right) is a tiny sketch I did before doing this larger one. I Photoshopped part of it out -- there was a bit above her hood -- but when I tried to take out the part on her forehead it looked too blurry, so I left it.

January 19, 2012

"What do you think of this person who draws pictures of people on buses?"

January 19, 2012
Look what I found on the Internets. I love it! I've always wondered if people would be annoyed, or, you know, if they're already annoyed. This made my day. Thanks, AnonymousGirl!

January 19, 2012

Transitway busses are where I can try for more detailed pictures, but they've been so crowded along my route that I can't get a good sightline on people. So, why not the backs of their heads? 

But today I was extremely lucky: a baby on board! I'm crap at drawing babies, so I love to practice. This is what me practicing looks like on paper.

January 17, 2012

I'm just a doodling fool

January 17, 2012

Felt like a break from the fancy markers and drew with a regular Pilot pen this morning. Remember doodling on foolscap in high school with Bic pens? Art thrives on boredom.

January 16, 2012

Bleed resist

January 12, 2012

January 12, 2012

January 16, 2012

Instead of writing a post, I spent tonight touching up a stained drawing with Photoshop. My markers bleed right through my notebook pages, so my solution has been to stick a folded page under my current drawing. Earlier today I decided to do some extra work on the green-bordered image above but I forgot to move my blotter page! So, I layered red all over the woman in the blue hat, my favourite picture all month. Harrumph. Her hat still has some splotchy blue dobs on it. I got the red out, but I wasn't able to figure out how to make all the blue look the same. Saturation, luminosity, feathering, so much to learn!

January 10, 2012

Ole big eyes

January 6, 2012
An innocent man, spotlit on the #95, we've changed his coat colour to protect his identity.

January 5, 2012

Kodachrome Croton

December 28-January 5, 2011
Humour me. Take a long hard look at this picture.

Notice something? No blur, no erratic lines. Lots of carefully chosen elements -- multiple colours and crafted lines. It has the characteristics of a picture done in time, at length, with devoted attention and stillness.

You don't have to like it. I don't even know if I do. But it really really really pleases me to know I finished something.

January 3, 2012

Pea coat vedettes

December 19-21, 2011
January 3, 2012

Wide lapels make us look like stars.

January 2, 2012

Happy New Year!

Trans-Canada Highway, December 24-January 2, 2012
The holidays came and sadly went, with much sitting in an armchair for long moments spent examining something that didn't move, specifically, a croton plant. Any of you taking art classed or fooling around with art stuff in the comforts of your own studios, you are lucky. You are in charge of what you are looking at, and the only motions are your own!

I can't show you the plant picture, though. I haven't finished it yet because of the agonising amount of colour layering I've been doing -- the only techniques I know come from painting, so I waste a lot of time fixing mistakes -- and now I'm working on it from photographs.

So you instead have this garden variety bus blog picture. Look, a road! And blurry trees! Drawn from inside a moving vehicle! I'm only funning. I love this stuff.

Happy 2012. Best wishes to everybody for a great year of creative pursuit.