Sunday, June 30, 2013

Day 286 - A Sarah of a Different Color

I've been angry with myself lately because I'm not better at coloring drawings.  My knowledge of techniques is very limited (within the boundaries of Painter and otherwise) and this bothers me.  I couldn't sleep last night so I came into my office and chose a previous drawing to use as a guinea pig of sorts.

I need practice on everything from my outlining to my shading and blending.  You, lucky reader, get to once again suffer along with me as I attempt to become less awkward with Painter.

With this particular one, I tried different ways to outline and played with airbrushes.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Day 285 - A Different Medium

Today was our annual summer cookout/party that we throw for our friends.  The first half of my day was spent prepping for said party and the second half was spent, well... partying.  Do you see how I'm building up layers of an excuse here?  Can you predict that my next statement will involve some kind of reasoning behind why I didn't do anything more involved today?

Does a drawing on the dry erase board in my kitchen count?  Sure it does... it's a drawing, ain't it?!

It's really difficult to draw on a dry erase board, by the way.  Also, the "Closed due to weather" sign was added by one of the party goers due to the absolutely torrential rain/hail that blew through central Ohio during the festivities.  That kind of weather makes conversation with 21 other people nearly impossible on a screened in porch with a metal roof. 

Friday, June 28, 2013

Day 284 - I Got Nothin'

Well... not literally nothing... but not much of anything.  Very occasionally I'll get a day where I simply do not want to draw and cannot tap into that part of my brain that allows me to do so.  This doesn't happen frequently but when it does it makes me want to throw chairs through windows.  Figuratively, of course... and shoot, that's kind of an interesting drawing idea, isn't it? Too late now... I already did some more work on my friend Leslie's drawing.  It was all I could manage to eek out tonight.  Ick.

If you don't hear from me by early afternoon tomorrow you'll know I'm in trouble.  We're having a cookout/party tomorrow and I'd better get my act together before 4:00.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Day 283 - Trying To Blend In

Many minutes were spent today staring off into the abyss trying to conjure up a drawing idea.  The creative mechanisms weren't at work, however, and I resorted to good ol' Google Image Search to help me out.

Chameleons.  I'm not sure why I picked chameleons.  I partially drew two of them and then threw both drawings away only to fish them back out of the trash can and start on them again.

Neither are great... one is a more "accurate" representation whereas the other is just me trying my own version.  Quite by accident the latter looks like some sort of lizard-dog hybrid.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Day 282 - We're Up All Night to Get Punky.

If you read yesterday's post you'll recall that my darling husband came up with two drawing ideas for me: Gandalfeeny and Daft Punky Brewster.  The former, I drew yesterday and the latter I've tackled today. 

On the off chance that you're not familiar with the 1980's show Punky Brewster, it was about a young girl who was adopted (along with her dog) and is generally quirky and wears crazy colors, etc.  In my kid eyes no one was cooler than Punky Brewster.

On the off chance that you're not familiar with Daft Punk, they're a French duo of musicians who produce all manner of nifty electronic music... and wear helmets while in public.Here's a song of theirs that you're welcome to get stuck in your head for the rest of your natural life.

On the off chance that you're still reading this... Here's Daft Punky Brewster.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Day 281 - You Shall Not Pass, Mister Matthews.

Many people my age fondly remember the show Boy Meets World and the teacher/neighbor/foil to various shenanigans, Mister Feeny (played by William Daniels, the voice of everyone's favorite talking Trans Am).

When you ask Josh for drawing ideas he comes up with things like a Mister Feeny/Gandalf the Grey hybrid, called... say it with me now... Gandalfeeny.  He also concocted "Daft Punky Brewster" and conducted an informal poll on Facebook to decide which one I should draw.  Gandalfeeny won.

Admittedly, I have a soft spot for Punky Brewster... apparently, wearing two different color shoes was all the criteria needed to be one of my childhood heroes. And I definitely like Daft Punk so I was hoping for a favorable vote in that direction but I was disappointed.  I'll draw that one tomorrow, maybe.

So, without further ado, I give you Gandalfeeny

Monday, June 24, 2013

Day 280 - Me... Again.

In my continuing efforts to become more skilled at "cartoonifying" people/things, I've thrown myself under the bus once again.  I have no qualms about practicing by drawing myself because I can't offend myself... well, I don't know for sure if that's out of the realm of possibility but it would have to be a horrifying drawing day, indeed.

Anyway, Josh took this picture of me a few months ago during an impromptu dollar store safari.  I thought I'd use it for practice.

My big, giant  aquiline nose always tends to complicate things and throw off how I draw my eyes and the fact that my head was seemingly constructed without any cheekbones whatsoever... it all adds up to my mug looking weird when I draw it.  Thus ends the "Things I Don't Like About My Own Face" diatribe.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Day 279 - Base Coat

I don't have anything of interest to say regarding today's post.  I simply added base color to my friend Leslie's drawing.  That's it! See you tomorrow!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Day 278 - One of Those Days

You know how every once in awhile you get the overwhelming urge to draw a giraffe in a necktie?  Well, today was one of THOSE days.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Day 277 - The Time Burglar

Here's yet another autobiographical drawing.  I do a lot of those.  It's cathartic, I guess.

Some co-workers and I have a term to describe a certain class of individual that we all seem to deal with.  A time burglar is one who will, without mercy, suck the ever-lovin' life out of you in an attempt to solve a problem, obtain information or request a service of some kind.

A Time Burglar is easily identified by his/her frequent use of elongated "ummmmmmm"s and often punctuates sentences with overly-dramatic sighs.  A Time Burglar will rob you blind if you're not careful.

Today, one of my aforementioned co-workers enthusiastically encouraged me to draw my interpretation of The Time Burglar.  After some consideration I decided the concept would be better conveyed by employing a simple narrative... that ends with death and destruction, as is only fitting.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Day 276 - Take It or Leave It

It's time for yet another installment of Things Sarah Doesn't Draw Well.  There's an almost infinite list of things that fall into that category but today's episode features not one, but TWO Things Sarah Doesn't Draw Well:  Buildings/Houses and Straight Lines.

Buildings, houses, structures, whatever... very frequently consist of straight lines and therefore bore me x 2.  I don't draw them a lot and I'm not good at them because of it.  Today, I decided to try (from memory) a part of the front of the house that I grew up in.  I thought I'd play with it as a potential background to my picture of my grandmother that I drew the other day.

Nope. Boring.

I had intended to work more tonight on my friend's illustration, but you know what? I'm tired and I've had it with computers.  So this is what you get today because *I* am going to have  glass of moscato and catch up on Downton Abbey.

So there.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Day 275 - Deja Vu All Over Again

Remember my little story last night about how I accidentally saved my line drawing minus the vital separate layers? Remember that? Well, I spent some time today researching solutions to that predicament and decided that my best solution would be to just ink it all over again.

I was thrilled.

So I did just that tonight which is why this post is called "deja vu..." It looks remarkably similar to my post from several days ago but this time with the fresh scent of anger and frustration...

I'm not done yet and haven't yet deleted my scanned pencil drawing from underneath the digital lines.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Day 274 - Back It Up

I don't even have the mental wherewithal to get into this... long story short: in what turned out to be not one of my more intelligent moments, I saved my line drawing from the other evening in a manner that makes it incredibly difficult (and very possibly, impossible) to paint it in the manner I'm accustomed to. (if I'd implemented the backup device my brilliant husband set up on my computer maybe I'd not be in this predicament.) After wrestling with it for a half hour or so I decided that for this evening's drawing I'd use a doodle I made at work earlier and call it a night.

In what will no doubt join the pile of "illustrations I mean to complete one day" I started in on thinking about something involving my grandmother cheering at our annual 4th of July parade (that she helped start 50+ years ago).

It's not super, but it's somethin'.  Now I can retreat to a hole and regret my thinking-like-an-artist-not-a-logical-person actions. Feh.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Day 273 - Someone's Got a Case of the Mondays

In case you're not familiar with things "the internet" has deemed important, this is Grumpy Cat:

In case you're not familiar with me, this is my usual demeanor.

Today? Nope.  Today is a Grumpy Cat kind of a day:

Bonus: Thanks to Central Ohio humidity my hair is so fuzzy that I look out of focus so, you know, that helps.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Day 272 - Two-Minute Tiki

While lounging on the back porch, at a loss for drawing ideas, I quickly said to Josh, "Ok, drawing idea! Go!" After a half second's thought he replied with "Tiki head!"

Ok... why not?

This may not look like much to you but it's really proof of how far I've come.  If 272 days ago, you would've asked me to, in two minutes, draw a tiki head and be satisfied with it I would've hemmed and hawed and come in to my office to get the tiki head I have on a shelf. I would've spent too much time trying to draw it and then given up.  Now? I can do rapid-fire drawings and one can actually tell what it was I had intended to draw.

That feels amazing.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Day 271 - Line Up

The motivation to sit down and work is often made easier by listening to whatever music it is I'm currently obsessed with. I go through phases where I exclusively listen to one thing only and right now that one thing is a band called Alt-J that I recently found thanks to Grooveshark's recommendations (probably stemming from my obsessively listening to The Maccabees and Florence + the Machine.)  I cannot stop listening to their album and as a result I look forward to sitting down at the computer to draw.

Anyway, today I inked in the lines on the drawing for my friend Leslie.  I'm getting much better at outlining.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Day 270 - Two Not-Great Drawings for the Price of One

I have two mediocre drawings for you today that I'm less than enthusiastic about.  It's Friday and as such I had to get my drawing done early because Friday night is dinner and movie on the couch night for Josh and I.
I started with that, actually...

But eh... the proportions are all weird and the faces are wrong. Eh... I didn't even have the energy to correct it.  One thing that IS accurate, though, is the way I drew myself sitting.  I never sit like a normal human being, ever.

So then I thought "I want ice cream!" Columbus, Ohio, is a mecca for fantastic artisan ice cream but sometimes a gal just wants a good ol' fashioned soft serve cone from Dairy Queen.  I thought drawing one would help sate the craving but alas, twas not to be.  Instead my ice cream craving has increased ten-fold and the by-product is a boring drawing of the (currently) unattainable.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Day 269 - Thursday Tweaking

This evening I started to throw some color onto the drawing for my friend but I realized I wasn't happy with some aspects of how I drew it.  I draw far better on paper than I do on the Wacom tablet so I literally went back to the drawing board and did a final version that I won't have to mess with once I get it into Painter.  Much easier that way.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Day 268 - Of Coins & Creepy Comments

I deal with a fairly large number of people at work on a daily basis thus increasing the likelihood that someone will say something odd to me.  I'm good at improvising and I can think fast but sometimes a comment comes out of left field and renders me temporarily speechless. Today was one of those times.

I was given a somewhat unorthodox compliment by someone saying that I "look like a Greek goddess."  From a purely subjective point of view my appearance does not inspire worship nor do I give off an energy suggesting a divine presence.  In reality I have largish, cartoony features and I'm frequently laughing about something outlandish and not conducting myself in a fashion that might be considered graceful or ladylike.  Plus: bonus double chin!

So understandably I was a little taken aback by this comment, although flattered... and inspired! I didn't want to go the egomaniacal route and draw myself as a full blown Greek goddess because... yikes.  I did the next best thing and slapped my mug on the side of a Greek-style coin.

I'd rather be currency than canonized; rather be spent than than sanctified; rather be money than marveled at.  Ok, I'm done...

...rather be treasure than treasured... DONE!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Day 267 - It's Late, I'm Tired

If you've read this blog for any length of time you'll remember that my college major was animation and it's animated characters that I most frequently default to when I can't conjure up anything better to draw.

Well... it's late and I'm feeling mercurial and spent and enervated and whatever other grandiloquent, highfalutin' synonyms for tired and unfocused you can think of.

So this evening I sketched Lilo from my "Art of Lilo and Stitch" book.

The End.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Day 266 - First In Line...

I seem to suddenly find myself in the midst of three commissions with a fourth hanging on the outskirts waiting to be made official.  All of them are for people I know who find me somewhere between likeable and tolerable so it's not THAT impressive, but you know... I'll take what I can get.

Today I started in on one of those commissions.  A dear friend of mine who has been lately wading through more than her fair share of junky life gunk asked me to do this drawing based on a sticker she used to have as a kid.  The picture on the sticker showed a girl in her pool which has just popped and all the water and toys are flooding out.  The text says simply "Praise God, Anyway". 

I've got to tweak how I've drawn the damaged part of the pool because it doesn't look quite right... oddly, it's difficult to find pictures of damaged kiddie pools in Google Image Search.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Day 265 - Blargh!

Did I spell "blargh" correctly?  That's the sound I've made too many times today during my too many attempts to draw like a thirty-one year old with an art degree and not like a four year old with a dull Crayola jammed in my fist.

In a desperate attempt to hasten my trip to the bathtub to finish the Neil Gaiman book I'm reading I just did this.  Angry me angrily attempting to draw something, something without throwing my Wacom tablet through the nearest window. (I wouldn't do that, really... it was expensive even though I got it on Craigslist.)

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Day 264 - Saturday Snooze

I can't motivate myself on the weekends.  Maybe it has to do with me being at home instead of at work... at home there are a million things that are more interesting on Pinterest or Facebook or the internet at large... and I'm a sucker for a good nap on the weekends.

Anyway, today I sketched while on the back porch.  Charlie provided a quick gestural sketch (she never sits still long enough for anything more than that) and a cup that, until recently, contained Jeni's Savannah Buttermint ice cream was my second model.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Day 263 - Have A Seat Part II

I've been sitting here in front of my screen for several minutes trying to come up with something amusing to say about this but alas, it's Friday and I'm all cleverereded out for the week.

I picked more at the book cover.  I'm struggling with highlights on the red parts so I'm sort of ignoring that for now.  I like where it's headed, though!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Day 262 - Green Acres

Once upon a time you could request that I draw something outlandish and we'd have a laugh about it and I'd never actually do it.

Not anymore...

Here is yet another conversation that got out of control and turned into a drawing idea.  My friend Fred compared himself to Johnny Appleseed while explaining the upcoming chore of spreading grass seed in his yard. So today we have the Fred version of Johnny Appleseed... but with grass seed... and Fred.

I thought the lawnmower hat, akin to the cheeseheads that Packers fans wear, added a little extra somethin' special.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Day 261- An Outlet For My Attitude

Salespeople are the natural enemy of the receptionist.  I apologize if you are a member of that profession but politely disposing of those of your ilk is one of the things I excel at.  Very frequently representatives from various companies will show up unannounced and ask to speak to some of our most busy employees.  Most of the time a polite "I'm sorry but they're not available" will suffice but other times they put up a fight.

My favorite class of difficult salesperson is Guy Who Is Roughly My Age Who Think He Can Charm Me. Unless you're my husband or a certain tall, British gentleman with a funny name, that tactic won't work. This is where I employ one of the most surprisingly effective weapons in my arsenal: I stand up and continue the conversation at eye level.  For whatever reason that simple action throws a wet blanket over any overly-assertive salesman behavior and I can usually contain the situation fairly quickly after that.

So this happened today, of course... I decided to draw what I wish I could do rather than what I have to do to remain professional. It's interesting how every time I draw myself I look different.  I have this little army of Characters That Resemble Sarah.  Someday maybe I'll finally settle on a style. 

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Day 260 - Excessive Homecoming

Josh (who as you may recall, is my most favorite person on the planet) has been in North Carolina for the last four days and will return home this evening.

He and I spent the first four years of our relationship on opposite sides of the country and we only saw each other for a week at a time, every six months.  That was a long time ago.  In our nine years of marriage this is the longest we've been apart and I'll be exceedingly happy to see him again tonight.

However, since I have a history with a bulging disc in my lower back, I should only hug like this on paper. 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Day 259 - Shhh!

The overly emphatic singing of birds at 5:00 AM is the only drawback to sleeping with open bedroom windows in the spring and summer.  It's hard to ignore their ill-timed enthusiasm when you're trying to get another hour of sleep in.  To say that I'm not a morning person is an incredible understatement.

This is how I felt this morning... Any attempt at self-portraiture went out the door fairly early when I decided I wanted to go more for a facial expression that was out of my comfort zone rather than an accurate likeness. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Day 258 - Please Be Seated

In a shocking display of competency, I remembered to periodically SAVE my progress as I was working on this tonight in Painter! She can be taught, folks!

As you may remember this is a book cover for my friend's middle school ministry devotional.  Is that a roll of *ahem* TP on the arm of the chair? Yes... yes it is.  Fred knows how to get the attention of his less-than-mature middle school audience and he's calling his book "Thoughts From the Throne".  It was my responsibility to convey that double meaning in a classy manner.

Since I positively ooze class this is what I came up with.  I'm obviously still in the process of shading and all that business.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Day 257 - The Green Giant

I have a smallish, raised bed garden in my side yard that I grow vegetables in every summer.  A few weeks ago I prepped it for the new planting season by putting peat moss in with the existing dirt.  I'm guessing that there was something nefarious in with the peat moss that caused a consistent layer of nasty, nasty weeds to grow like the plague across the entire length of my garden.  I spent two hours today pulling it all out.  I think that most of my seedlings survived the onslaught but my carrots took some heavy casualties.  The weeds just choked out their ability to grow like they should've.

So of course, here's what I think really happened... the nasty, weedy peat moss personified as some manner of nasty, weedy peat moss villain.

(I drew this on a large sketch pad that was almost too big to fit on the scanner... hence the weird shadow/cropping.)