Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Fierce Enemy, Now Their Friend

Beorn has always been a favorite character of mine from The Hobbit.  This piece has changed A LOT from the first little inkling that cropped into my head a couple of months ago.

Photocopy of the pencil drawing which was then mounted onto masonite and sealed with matte medium.

Oil paints over top.  Trying to keep it painterly, but this one probably sat on the worktable a little longer than it should have.  A better image and explanation will follow once I dig out my tripod and/or find some better lighting.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Hobbit.

When I was eight years old (I think) my Dad read me The Hobbit before I went to sleep.  I don't remember how many nights it took, probably many more than he needed to spend, but I have always remembered him taking the time to do this.

It was the most fantastic stuff I had ever heard of, little people called hobbits, dwarves, trolls, goblins, great eagles, Gandalf the wizard, a big guy who turns into a great bear, elves, spiders, a dragon, stolen gold under a mountain, and a grand adventure.  I was hooked, what's not to love?

Lots of artists have tackled Tolkien's extraordinary world, that being the case I think back to a quote I heard from an artist not long ago, "If you keep trying to be original, you'll wake up one day a shriveled old man that's done nothing.  Just make sure you're being authentic."  If I can get these pictures to look anywhere close to what I saw in my head when I heard The Hobbit for the first time 18 years ago and what I see when I read it now, I think I'll be doing OK.  And even though this is a personal undertaking, these images are just as much for my Dad as they are for me.

"Queer Lodgings"  one of many scenes of feasting and deep talking, this time in the house of Beorn.

Looking now, there are some real ugly passages those no mind.  Graphite on thrice gessoed illustration board.  Plan is to spray the drawing with fixative then lay oils on top.  I've seen a really good illustrator do this to great effect...I have no idea how it will work for me.  The other purpose of these Hobbit pieces is also to try and find a good way of getting the drawing into the painting, this being the first method of a couple that I'm trying.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Three Mice, Four Drawings... far anyway.

These guys originated a while back after a trip to the Delaware Art Museum, and a lot of standing in awe of Pyle and Wyeths' (all three of them) work.  Even though the drawing itself really doesn't resemble any of those artists amazing paintings.

I don't know where these mice are from, but I have a feeling it's probably somewhere close by, and definitely on an old farm.  And I do know that they seem to be good at getting into predicaments.  And that though I've been calling them mice, I think the idea may have started with them being rats.  So feel free to interpret them as either.

Tonal inkwash with charcoal and chalk over top.  There are, so far, three more of these drawings, which will be posted soon, and each clocks in at around 8 to 10 hours of work.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Me Three.

So, welcome. If you're here I suppose you're interested, or perhaps curious, or you were intending to find something else entirely. Any of the above will suffice.

I teach High School Art. That still surprises me sometimes. But I have fun, and the kids keep life interesting.

I would also like to illustrate. I'm working on that one, and we'll see where it goes.

In general, my thoughts are that I'll keep most of my thoughts to myself here, and let the art do the talking. So since this is an introduction, this is me...times three.

All are in acrylics and a couple of hours each. The black and whites were enjoyable. Color is a cruel mistress. And the crazy face was a blast.

'Til next time.