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Sunday, April 30, 2006

These were drawn from the Natural History Museum of Science yesterday. Drawing in semi darkness, jostled by kids, parents, my kid running rampad with another kid. I feel anxious, guilty, pressured so the work does not flow. But it is a good exercise on concentration and abbreviated drawings. I look for gesture and shape, how the flesh gathers on the frame or does not. These animal drawings take no more than five minutes, even the ones from books. I learned to draw this way from Paul Wee, at the associates in arts college when I first moved to S. Ca. I had never seen anyone draw the human figure so lyrically as Paul before moving out here and he was a patient teacher as well as very encouraging and inspiring. thanks, Paul, for bringing my skills up several levels. Did you know as a member of the Natural History Museum, I can check out animal specimens from the museum? I can borrow a full size sabor tooth cat skull for two weeks! Maybe next time! Keep practicing!

More from books. I did these a few nights ago and it was pure heaven. Finally, after struggling so many years, drawing, drawing, drawing, i am reaching a level of confidence, so much so that i no longer so much struggle, but enjoy, experiment, have fun. It is effortless, flying without wings. But i am no means where I wish to be at! The next step is a little more practice, then drawing my own cats with LeoPardine.

Drawn from library books. These are very sketchy and are unfinished, yet I am so pressed for time to do other things..practice, practice, practice

Monday, April 24, 2006

Really wanted to draw this from another angle. i did this one in minutes, trying the patience of my 4 year old. She must think Mom is a kook. The smilodon, saber tooth cat, was much smaller than the American lion. I read somewhere that some scientists think they never closed their mouths, that the mouth hung open...

Anyway, next Sat. I plan to switch gears and visit the Natural History Museum and check out the eohippus!

La Brea studies. These are done while trying to keep my 4 four year old from running off or throwing on of her legendary tantrums..actually she did really well. I had her drawing right along with me. Again, I am struck at the sheer beauty of these animals--all curves and tapers. What fun shapes to draw, what good practice. Here in North America, we boast of having the American Lion; one of the largest big cats ever, reaching a size 1/3 larger than the African! What a privilege to live so close to La Brea. All those creatures who unwittingly gave their lives to the Pits. So much to draw and study there. So many more angles to draw and digest...

Again from a photo. The image was cut off, so i made up the back end and hind legs. The back foot is way too long, but I am closer to the big cats rhythm.

First I went to a book and drew some big cats from there, to get familiar with the rythm of the body.

I drew all these studies in a burnt umber prisma color; my favorite and I have NO idea why they all came out blue! Anyone out there know why??

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Some studies for LeoPardine. I need to learn how to really draw big cats and do it well, but the truth is this: I draw horses easily, not felines. My big cats suck; they still look like dogs to me--at least in body. The feet should look like big mitts and I need to work on this. So in desperation, I bought a pass for La Brea where, this weekend, I plan to go draw the big cat anatomy. I thumbed through my Frazetta books, got depressed (inspired, too) and I love the way he painted his cats-supple, ferocious, hugely powerful. Got lots of freelance also, again I must push LeoPardine aside. Also trying to get rid of a nasty cold. My big cats must look alive, living and I need to work on this too. My cats will be a mix of leopard, smilodon; I love the big fangs and wide open jaw. Can't wait to put these on canvas...

Saturday, April 08, 2006

A painting of my daughter. I did it in 4 40 minute nap sessions. This is one of Greg's favorite paintings, altho I may have to rescan this image since it came out so crappy.

Friday, April 07, 2006

I helped to raise a rottweiler. It was while I was away at college and during breaks, would come home and he would really bond with me. He was the greatest dog I had ever had; completely and totally in love with me. Every dog we had ever had loved my Dad unconditionally and Mo broke that tradition. When I came home, he would listen to only me and always had to have me in his line of sight. He grew to an emormous 185 pounds of lean muscle in his prime, easily looking over a 6 foot fence. Dad kept him in great shape; always taking him to the park to run and he lived 13 years, which is a ripe old age for a large dog. Even after his death, for several years he took the role of spirit guardian in my dreams.

This is one of my favorite little paintings. I was just learning to paint with acrylic and it was the first time that the painting looked better than the drawing. Back then, after college, I always drew tight pencils before doing a painting; but these days, just go straight for the painting; no time for a tight pencil. I will be going back to tight pencils with leoPardine and fantasy drawings.

This is one of many clothed figure sketches done in Bob Kato's class at Disney before he opened a drawing club. When i first started drawing the clothed model; I was so used to drawing the nude and I simply sucked. For two years, with only 2 hours a week and never quitting, I continued to improve, or at least gained confidence and moved into quick watercolors. What amazed me, is that after giving birth to my daughter, taking 4 months off, going thru 7 consecutive nights of insomnia for nearly 2 years and suffering horrible post partum depression, came back to Bob's class and nailed the drawings. When i was drawing, the hormones made drawing feel like an out of body experience but I had been practicing all that time before so much before, my hand and eye knew what it was doing.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

This is an old illustration I painted for Rooms to Go, a furniture co. back east. Greg did all the concepts. It was the first finished artwork we had ever done; I painted it traditionally and brightened and edited it in Photoshop. We had wanted a warm, story book feeling, with a traditionally painted look to it. It was a huge project for two people and a young baby who frequently threw tantrums and never slept. I figure I can handle any project now after going thru this experience.

This one of my favorites, again Greg's concept. It was done for a loft bed with hanging pictures making the bunk bed look like a fort. Real fun concept; one of Greg's best, I think. I painted most the elements in acrylic on canvas and assembled it in Photoshop. There were 4 more illustrations that went with it and they were all large.

I love to draw with pencil, but Greg thinks the thing I do best is paint in acrylic. Often, I get confused because I can't think which is better in the hand--a pencil or a brush loaded with paint? And can i paint and draw in heaven? I worked at Disney Feature Film for 5 years--I am so compulsive and disciplined, I would draw 10 hours aday, come home, eat dinner and draw from video; I love it so much. This red landscape is made of all the earth colors I love; sienna, red and yellow ochres, red, orange, yellow cadmiums, the sky my favorite neutral mix: ultramarine and cadmium orange with a touch of naples yellow. I have not been able to work on it, considering I am home with a very active and spirited 4 year old, working on freelance and trying to stay sane. Leopardine keeps me going; and even then must sketch her on the run; inbetween laundry, dishes, clients. Am also learning to digitally ink in illustrator.