Sketcho-mashup. ~ 45 minutes
So I turned in the keys to the Indi Go Artist Co Op / Gallery this afternoon. For seven days I was responsible for and had control over one of the more beautiful gallery spaces I’ve seen. I took the opportunity to display the best of my studio art from the last 15 months; a period during which I re-introduced myself to a studio practice. All told I produced over 21 new pieces, and effectively covered two levels of a decently sized gallery. Most importantly, this is my first solo show, and the fact that the gallery wall’s didn’t looked particularly empty is an absolute triumph in my book. These last few months have been dominated by 1) my desire to make enough good work to successfully cover Indi Go’s walls, and 2) find the time to produce 5 drawings a week for this blog. In the end those goals came into conflict, and with my working on the paintings either very late at night or very early in the morning, my sketch-time diminished. Ah well – at that particular moment, the gallery show is what I needed to be doing.
Basically I’m an average artist who grew up both painting and drawing. I went to art school, got burned out on gallery work, and have largely focused on commercial 2D and 3D art for the past 8 years. Here’s how I made the transition back to a ‘showing’ fine-artist:
- 15 months ago, two things coincided;
- a very large piece of wood fell into my lap. I promptly made a wall out of it, and dramatically set it up in the corner of our living room
- a flurry of purchaces took place. Paper, inks, brushes, ect. I began making a very large ink painting, using said wall as a stable surface
- i severely hurt myself riding my bike and spent over a month and a half on crutches, staring at the half-finished painting. Creepily, it stared back.
- freed from crutches, I completed the first piece, and opened a facebook account for the first time just to show it off. The response was positive, and I was elated.
- 8 months later I had enough work to show friends. The same one who critiqued the earlier illustration work forwarded the photos – on his own and without permission / provocation – to a local gallery. Roughtly 3 minutes later I had a scheduled solo show with 4 months to prepare. And that about brings us up to speed. Choosing to host a solo-show instead of allowing the gallery to partner me with someone else was terrifying, but I wanted to work, not play. I needed to produce art to the beat of a drum, and I feel I did just that. And shockingly (to me most of all) both others and myself seemed to genuinely enjoy looking at the art. That’s not to say it’s particularly fantastic work, but good enough to stand in front of for awhile. To not spoil the food, wine and good company at the reception. And that’s as far as I’ve gotten. If I can make work, and every 12 to 16 months throw a party for my friends, but instead of watching reruns of Arrested Development we can stare at my art for awhile, well then I’ll be very, very happy.
But the first show is done. Tomorrow I’m cleaning my art space and starting a list of new supplies to buy. New colors, new brushes, new paper. New paper?! I can’t wait.
Not sure exactly what the gizmo on her right-hand does, but I like the idea of something being so useful that it can entirely replace the human hand. It’s a concept I would like to play around with more in the future. ~ 70 minutes
Prepping final work on the gallery show I have coming up this week. It feels very good to get away and work on sketchwerks. I really like the overall feel of this one. ~ 70 minutes
I sat down and sketched out five or six different roughs at the beginning of the week – this has been nice in that as soon as I sit down to draw I have something to work on. As most of these drawings are done before I’ve had a chance to drink my first cup of coffee in the morning It’s been a welcome change. ~ 60 minutes
Playing around with the very cool Scrippets plugin for WP;
EXT. FUTURE CITY -- NIGHT
TUPPER and PEARL are walking down a tiny, cluttered street.
This is wrong. Something is wrong here.
If you stop walking they will kill you. Stay by my side and you’ll be safe.
I’m in the process of learning how to develop a story concept in screenplay format. Towards that end I’m reading;
- Writing a Great Movie: Key Tools for Successful Screenwriting by Jeff Kitchen (2006)
Lays out a pretty thorough explanation for the different elements that go into your typical 3 act screenplay. Elaborates on methods that allow you to better grow your characters, your plot, your conflict, and overall connect more deeply with your audience.
- The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film by J.W. Rinzler (2007)
Mostly composed of cast and crew interviews which took place before the original Star Wars became hugely successful. The benefit for me is that George Lucas in particular was at that point very forthcoming about the long evolution of the original screenplay. He was also very honest about his overall struggles with the creative process, and clearly layed out how he overcame those frustrations. It’s actually making me like him again, which after the the release of Episode’s 1 – 3 I thought I would never say.
Additionally I’ve begun taking notes on the plot and characters in an actual notebook (!) which seems deeply archaic, but has so far been pretty beneficial; I don’t get caught up in formatting or spelling, and since this is the ‘sausage making’ portion of the stories development, I don’t worry about others reading it. Before the notebook I had attempted to jump right into the writing using a screenplay format, which looked cool but wasn’t really resulting in good work. So instead I’m going to do my best to really map out the story, make a step outline, and when I have everything pretty much figured out (like who the bad guy is), then I’ll move forward with the screenplay.
This is all in an effort to avoid getting bogged down, caught up in non-critical details, and burned out. I’ve started and stopped writing half a dozen stories over the past 8 to 10 years, and am now in a process of constantly shifting strategies in hopes of finding a method that will allow me to actually finish something. Because that would be sweet.
I had a false start with this one and so this is all I got done this morning. I’ll display the completed image next to it when it’s inked. ~ 40 minutes
June 2nd update: Finished the inking. I would like another crack on the lower-half of the body.