Thursday, January 24, 2013


Hello, just making a post to say that for now, this blog is officially on hold, and I won't be posting here until I figure out a new way to approach it. It's been a year since I last posted, a pretty long and not super artistically-eventful year to be honest. What I have been posting, has been going to my art Tumblr - so if you follow that, you will get all of my current works in progress, sketches, etc.!

 As for what I've been up to, the Western project I blogged about here has been on hiatus, and I'm currently working on lots of smaller things to hone my animation skills before I return to it. However, a lot of the concept work and sketches that I didn't post here (and new things) can be found in the Western tag on my tumblr as well.

In addition to these small study animations, I'm really looking forward to a couple of new projects I've been brainstorming on – a series of abstract animated gif images, a story taking place in an ancient fantasy setting, and something I'm calling the Fear Project for now. The latter two will take a lot of time and development, so they aren't going to happen for a very long time - the gifs I'd like to complete soon however, and the Western immediately thereafter.

I did enjoy writing about my process here, and talking about my work, but the more immediate and community-based nature of tumblr is working better for me right now- I'll come back to this space with more work under my belt and more things to write words about, and it'll probably be a place for longer-format thoughts. Speaking of, I'll end this with a few:

I said it was a fairly uneventful year, and I think that's because I'd lost sight of why I do this. I kept wondering 'what' I was going to do or 'how' I was going to make art, but that was never the right question to ask – the question was 'why.' I said I was a magician, but I don't want to make just illusions – I love art because I love changing our reality, and creating entirely new ones for people to see. I want to make spaces and events, stories and entire worlds that never existed – whether they're vast universes, or personal worlds of the mind. The media or method doesn't matter to me anymore, as long as it accomplishes that- it can be anything from animation to costume, film to games, a gallery piece or a performance. And I'm excited, so excited, to stop forcing myself to marry only one way of working, and instead stay true to the visions I want to make a reality. This will be what keeps me going at full speed this year, and I hope to show you the results.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Hope everyone had a great holiday season filled with family, friends and love, and that the New Year will be awesome to you! :3

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Blood Loss

Some very terrible things have happened to Ruth lately.
(This is faaar in the future from the animation, however)

Also, something conceptual from me?  What a surprise.  D:  (Though the composition later reminded me of something else - if you can guess what it is, you win a million cool points.)

Traditional sketch and ink drip, digital color.  Texture from Hibbary.  (Music - stuff like "Blood Roses" and "Black Dove" from Tori Amos)

For some more lighthearted work I've been up to lately, check out my tumblr.

Monday, July 18, 2011


As promised long ago, here's the cleaned up version of the walk cycle.
Now, to build from there!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Building Creek

Here's some of the concept work that should have been done at the start - so there was a hiccup in animation work, because this needed to get done asap.

It took me a lot longer than expected - first, I mapped out the town, and what buildings needed to be in it. I did tons of research to figure out what kind of buildings this town should have - and what kind of town it was. Our fictional Creek is a small-fry of a town in Colorado - no silver boom town, for sure. It also has families and children, not hordes of prospecting men - it was the place that Ruth's parents chose for a better life than the city for their family. Therefore it's probably an agricultural hub - a town where farmers get supplies and sell their wares. Such towns cropped up outside of the boom towns, to feed the growing population. So Creek has a all of the essentials, as well as a few of the non-essentials, meaning that it's met with some success. It lasted for at least 20 or so years, which was quite a feat, since many towns failed sooner than that.

The only thing I'm not entirely sure if it's accurate is the small houses at one end of town - I'd presume for migrant workers, farm hands, etc. I could find few resources on that kind of housing. :/ There's also a boarding house as well as a few other buildings on the side, not along this main drag, but they won't be making an appearance here.

Once the layout was decided, I went and researched the individual buildings. Every building here is based off of one or two real-life examples, found in old photographs and newer photos of ghost towns. INFINITELY helpful in this was The Townsmen from a Time-Life series on "The Old West", and Colorado Ghost Towns and Mining Camps by Sandra Dallas (Photos by Kendal Atchison) I tried to give it some visual variety, even though many of the buildings share a similar architectural style (cheap, fast, build-it-quick-style that is!) They even made pre-fabricated buildings back then, only some assembly required (which the little houses are based off of.) But figuring out and drawing all of these structures took faaaaaaar longer than ever imagined. I have a newfound respect for architects and people who draw buildings often - as well as realizing I should probably do it more myself.

Once it was planned out, I put the map and the individual buildings (as well as their side views) into Google Sketchup, to make a rough model of the town. Despite the sometimes clunky/frustrating controls, sketchup is pretty intuitive, and quick for something like this. It even lets you set the direction, and the time of day - and will project the appropriate shadows, This is TERRIBLY helpful!

I was also able to put in little rough figures for Ruth and Virgil, to figure out the scale and frame up the shots, so I know where to make backgrounds from.

I took a series of screenshots from sketchup, zooming in to out, so that I could make a background with warped perspective - warped so that, when I zoom along it, it should look actually accurate. I printed it large scale, traced the rough outlines onto watercolor paper, then set to redrawing the buildings to give them proper detail. Then, I used ink washes for the shadows.

It's currently unfinished, but this is as far as I needed it to be for the certain segment I was working on.

Many more backgrounds to go, but you'll see them in the end!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Sketchbook Work

Life drawings from my sketchbooks

Figure drawing at Society of Communication Artists, Fall 2010 and Spring 2011

The reds and pinks in these last two, as well as the pink and yellow on the man above, were all painted in neon acrylics, that unfortunately didn't scan well.

Experimenting without using lines:

This last one, done digitally, was extremely fun and liberating. It was like getting to oil paint, but without the setup, and the ability to mix any color you wanted very quickly.

Ink washes at the Scott House:

Dr. Sketchy's, June 15th - The model was the lovely Muse!
Dr. Sketchy's is a monthly drawing session with alternative models, burlesque dancers, performers, and all sorts of folk - many cities have one, but this is the page for Richmond's chapter, hosted by Deanna Danger at Strange Matter.

Gesture drawings to start - I was really trying to focus on movement, and better, more confident inking with these, and creating good shapes.

The challenge was to draw her on a deer - mine turned into a llama deer. Yeaaah....

It was good to get out and do some life drawings again, I hope to keep doing Dr. Sketchy's, and possibly SOCA in the future if alumni can get access!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Mannequin legs

Lighting exercise done this past fall in color theory - my dining room in daylight, by lamplight, and in blacklight and the orange lamplight filtering through the shades.

I learned so much during these about digital painting, with no small thanks to Reach for pointing me towards this tutorial. I hadn't experimented much with brushes before then, and simply adding an angle brush to the repertoire helped so much. Once I was able to figure out how to apply my traditional skills to digital work, it was like something just clicked. I really look forward to doing more digital painting in the future.