Thursday, December 31, 2009

And so the old year passes

Not so much with a whimper as a whisper at my place, but that's nothing new. Not a lot to pull me out of the house at the moment, what with most of my life revolving around art and school, which are pretty much the same thing of course, and trying to spend as little money as I can. But it's good, I got to open a lovely bottle of French Merlot that's been aging since July, when we first started going to the bottle-your-own place. Very nice, indeed.

So tonight's the night for resolutions, and usually I don't bother. I perform much better when I don't put specific expectations on myself, but this year I'll make one. Only one, though, I'm not gonna go crazy with this stuff, y'know.

My New Year's Resolution is: draw a hell of a lot more this year than any year in the past.

That's it, really. Just draw a lot. And what with the winter term at school staring me in the face, it's pretty much a given anyway. But hey, I'll take what I can get.

Two pages of sketches today. Hope you like.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Something different

Didn't get any sketching done today, because I got into the home stretch on my new afghan and wanted to get it out of the way today. For the first crochet project I've done in about three years, I think it turned out pretty damn good.

So next I want to finish up the scarf I started a week or so ago (should only be a one-day project) and do the shawl I want for school this winter, and I'll have my crafts fix for the holidays. Might continue from time to time, depending how much time I get away from my school work. I doubt it'll be much.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

On and on

Little burnt out today, dunno why exactly. Went out for a good supper with friends, so maybe that and the bitter cold on the way made a difference, I dunno. In any case, I'm home, and tomorrow's a new day.

Only one page of simple poses today, from photo ref. It'll have to do until tomorrow.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Ten years, eh?

This seems like as good a time as any for a decade review. Nothing terribly introspective or anything, just the highlights in point form. Here goes, in no particular order:

  • Got out of an abusive relationship
  • Had other, shorter, but much better other relationships
  • God in and out of BDSM
  • Had an increasing and then declining interest in Paganism
  • Moved to an entirely different province
  • Went to school and started a career
  • Left same career due to physical issues
  • Went to school to start another new career
  • Got tattooed
  • Twice
  • Got into photography
  • Stopped being a photographer and started drawing
  • Animated something by hand for the first time ever
  • Was publicly naked
  • Performed as a drag king (including first king ever at Ottawa Pride)
  • Took part in putting on a charity burlesque
  • Volunteered at the Fringe Festival, Folk Festival and Animation Festival
  • Saw people on the verge of death
  • Got involved in a complex polyamorous relationship
  • Experienced the downside of being involved with a sociopath with ADHD
  • Got into a long distance relationship with a great guy
  • Was introduced to the online fur community
  • Got into European comics
  • Sang in a choir
  • Learned to crochet
  • Fell out of love with anime, generally (Ghibli doesn't count)
  • Lost contact with a number of people
  • Regained contact with a number of people
  • Created a webcomic (now defunct)
  • Gave a guy his first penis as a gift
  • Worked as a dispatcher for home care personnel
  • Bought my first tablet (two of them)
  • Lived with ferrets for the first time
  • Started Playing WoW
  • "Played" Second Life a lot
  • Helped run an online art critique group
  • Visited Toronto for the first time
  • Spent two weeks in an 18-wheeler
  • Ate Vietnamese food for the first time

There's probably more, but that's all I can think of at the moment. All in all, a pretty uneventful decade. Gotta do more this coming ten years, yup!

Two pages today, from photo reference. I think I'm making progress, gotta keep it going.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

So yeah, Xmas

Pretty standard for me these days, really. The only physical presents I got were from my mom, and it was the usual routine of watch I probably won't wear, blouse that's too small and an assortment of little stuff. Some decent earrings, which I appreciate, so that's a start.

The big surprise was she sprung for an iPod Nano. Seriously, I was floored at that one. I was further floored when I tried to set the thing up and found that (a) I had no choice but to use iTunes, and I object to having to install special software just to run an MP3 player, and (b) just how non-intuitive and pain in the ass iTunes is. The whole synchronization thing is an awful way of running things, honestly. The site doesn't explain it very well either, so I pretty much wasted a whole afternoon on all that. Finally managed, so thank heavens for small mercies. It'll come in handy this winter.

So between that, company, and just plain flaking out the past couple of days, I haven't got much to show. Here's a page though, which I'm actually pretty pleased with. More work needed of course, but what else is new?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

A pass is a pass

So the marks came out today, and it turns out I passed! Whee! Not a great showing in Animation Drawing, telling me I have to raise my game by a couple more steps if I want to reach my personal goals and standards. But at least I get the chance to do it in second term now. Of course, beyond that the marks really don't mean much, since employers in this business don't look at them at all. But they're nice to know.

Here's the breakdown:

Animation Design: A+
Practices & Principles: A
Enviro: A-
Life Drawing: B+
Animation Drawing: C+

I would have probably had a straight B in Animation if it weren't for the flour sack and my utter inability to make it work in the time provided. I'm glad it didn't totally sink me though.

Only two pages of sketches today. Hopefully more than that tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

So about Christmas...

So it's hardly a secret that I'm not really on board with the whole Christian thing. I mean, it's cool if that's your thing, but it ain't really mine. So for a long while, I haven't been doing Christmas at all. It's been Solstice, if anything, especially when I was a lot deeper into paganism.

But you know, I've been drifting back to neutral again lately, probably since I never really got involved with the pagan community up here. So it's been more the quasi non-religious/Buddhist/vague paganism/animism melange that seems a default state for me. And what with Christmas upon us, I have to ask myself, do I do Christmas?

And yeah, I guess I do. At least to the degree I do any holiday.

See, what really decided me was looking back on being a kid and realizing that religion was never an inherent part of the holiday for me. The closest it ever got was one Christmas service I went to in elementary school (and was bored to tears), and the usual Charlie Brown Christmas and assorted lesser specials of the day. So when it came down to it, religion wasn't part of it. Family was, friends were, general good feeling and happiness was. So in the end, what's keeping me from enjoying this time of year?

Nuttin', dat's what.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Today's sketches. They're crap.

Think of it as aversion therapy, I guess. Maybe this'll force me to get better, just out of fear of embarrassing myself.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Holiday Time

So school finished for the term on Friday, leaving me to my own devices for three solid weeks. Which would make for a nice break, if the last animation assignment hadn't taught me that I have to improve my basic drawing and sketching skills a lot. My instructor says I'm where I'm supposed to be for a first year, and that I have strong draftsmanship skills, but that doesn't mean I'm a good artist, at least in my own eyes. So the next three weeks are going to follow a simple, direct plan:

Draw like crazy, and it doesn't matter what. The sketchier the better, so long as it's got structure.

That's pretty much it. No particular goals, other than sheer volume. Just getting used to drawing all the time, sketching and experimenting and just plain learning through experience. Which I should have been doing last year. But to hell with that, I'll do it now and do well at it.

So here's three pages from today, mostly studies from people I think are pretty damn good and want to emulate. Needless to say, none of them are mine, and if you can identify them all, congratulations. Apparently you're me.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Done like donair

So that's it. I just put the finishing touches on my last project of the term, which was to design "a room with personality". I decided to go with a 70's designer's living room, and fortunately from the three concepts I submitted as thumbnails (I also submitted carnival ringmaster's bedroom and retro future living room) that's the one that got picked. Turned out pretty decently, although my plan is to set it aside for a few months, then return to it once school is finished in April to try to make it into a portfolio-worthy piece. It's not there yet, of course, but it will be.

So now I just have to go in EARLY tomorrow, pop into the print shop when it opens and get this photocopied onto 11x17, trim it and submit by 9. Easy, except the getting up at 5:30 am part.

Dangit, now I want donairs, Halifax-style. They sell things called donairs here, but lemme tell ya. They ain't donairs.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Such a nice smile

Well, the craziness that is finals continues, with an exam on Monday morning, an 8-second animation that I've already done more than 200 drawings and re-drawings for due on Tuesday (and I'm not even done yet!!), and a room layout due at the end of the week, and on top of that I get this bit of silliness I have to do. I guess they assumed the rest wasn't enough, they might as well toss in a bit of make-work on top of that. Ironic part is, this would have been loads of fun if it weren't for the timing, I guess they just wanted to mess with us.

In any case, the assignment was to draw a skull, freehand, in 3/4 view and lable to the parts. Then once that's been prettied up a little, do another skull based on the first one, but this time altered to become an alien skull. Surprisingly enough, it was a lot easier than I'd expected.

I've heard a few people in class who were in Pre-animation last year talking about using the skulls they did last year. Obviously they'd be using some of their better skulls. Which they would have had in their portfolios. WHICH THE TEACHERS THIS YEAR HAVE ON FILE!

I dunno. I'm paranoid like that.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Giving you the sack

I might not be doing anatomy as much at the moment, but that don't mean I'm not drawing! Here's a few pages of sketches getting ready for my term final, the classic flour sack animation.

I need a lot more work to get anywhere near good, but there's definite improvement since the beginning of the year.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Not so bad after all

Well, somewhere along the line I managed to salvage a wee bit of confidence, and got my assignment done. It turned out far better than expected, honestly. It's mostly familiar stuff, since it's a revision of the Antic Box I posted a few weeks ago, but with the addition of the cape, smoother movement and more detail on the background. All in all, I'm pretty happy with it.

Now to see if the instructor agrees with me.

Oh, and the bad news is my November Project, doing all those Bridgeman studies, is gonna be on hold for a bit while I get my final projects for the term out of the way. Not to worry though, there will be sketches along the way.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Could use a shot of confidence

Got an assignment I have to get done for Monday, and I feel totally out of my depth. It's basically adding a cape to the bouncing box I did a couple of weeks ago (it's in the archives a little ways back), so in theory it should be easy. But never having studied drapery, I feel like it's way beyond my abilities. Although I feel a little better after doing a couple of pages of actual studies and reading a bunch of tutorials. Guess we'll see by the end of the weekend.

In any case, here's today's Bridgeman, and those drapery studies I mentioned. A mixed bag, there's some good stuff and some not-so-good stuff. Overall, I'm reasonably pleased with it.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Back on the horse

Sorry about missing the past few days. I got in a procrastination mode and wasn't doing what I should have. I do have an excuse for yesterday, since I spent it all doing school work, right into the evening. But Sunday and Monday, not so much.

Figures seem to be doing well, but those hands. Oy! I have lost my mojo!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Kick, punch, it's all in the mind

Pretty productive today for a change. Caught up on my homework, plus three half-hour sketch sessions. So here's the images:

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Hubba Jubba

Sorry I missed yesterday, I had schoolwork I needed to get done. I'll make it up with extra pages tomorrow, promise!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Cigarettes and Coffee Pots

More Bridgeman, plus a couple of Vilppu-style gesture studies I did in class this morning. Not really happy with tonight's Bridgeman, and I almost didn't get it done. Try to make it up by doing extra tomorrow, we'll see.