Did a demo for one of my friends, looking to paint in Photoshop with a mouse. I used a Rick Berry painting and tried to emulate it some by using Warp, Liquefy, the Smudge Tool (sparingly!) and mostly harsh lines. I learned in the process myself!
In closing, if I were teaching a class on digital painting, I would require the first project to be done with a mouse. I like how intentional one must be under that restriction.
Late entry to explain some of the last of our days of Illuxcon 2010:
Five portfolio reviews later, I have a refreshed direction on continuing to aim for a job in art. I have many directions I could take, but for now I shall settle for concept art. Fortunately, I've found my need for narrative to be satiated by Art Order's frequent challenges. While my narrative skills and general critical eye are immature, I have enough friends and master examples to point me in the right direction.
The artists made the convention: Tom Kuebler, Justin Gerrard, Mike Sass, Aaron Miller, Marc Fishman, Chris Burdett, Peter Morbacher, Katie McElroy, Chris Hayes, Lucas Graciano, Ralph Horsley, Jon Schindehette, Jeremy Cranford, et al brought much insight into my life. It was also a pleasure to be reminded that all of them are indeed humans with emotions and needs. Yes, even the excellent artists!
The lectures were probably more entertaining than they were supposed to be. Even talking about finances and art agents was a hoot! Between the lectures and my 'folio reviews I scribed down pages and pages of little life lessons. Ah, to be a young student!
In closing, my sympathies go out to any art student that couldn't attend. This was right up there with SIGGRAPH on my list of highlights. I can't wait to get a table next year—my friends and I are going to hog a good quarter of that convention space next year!
On the first night there were some fifteen people congregating in the hotel lobby when we arrived. Our group's first impressions were something along the lines of, "Uh oh, we should recognize who these people are—they're probably amazing artist." When we got back to our room we Googled everyone on the guest list. Surely enough, they were all here for Illuxcon, and most of them were artists held in high esteem.
We saw these artists a second time during breakfast this morning. I hated the idea of seeing them again without saying anything for a second time, but the only way I could talk at all was by embarrassing myself. Oh well. I searched on Twitter for "illuxcon", found a pretty cool artist that was in the group, and called his cell phone. One slightly awkward (but smug!) phone call later and we were one of the first students in the convention center.
For nine hours we stayed there, talking to some of the nicest, most hard-working men in the entire industry. Absolutely beautiful, gross, dynamic, peaceful, overly sexualized, and reserved images were hanging, the artists (and sometimes wives) talking all about it. The sensory overload had us floored, and we retired back to our hotel completely void of energy.
The total of ±10 hours of driving is behind us! David Kegg, Josh Johanson, Jarrod Evans, and I are all in this together. We will rendez-vous with three other friends from IWU later, as well as meet some online friends whenever that comes about.
Even though we haven't interacted with any of the hardcore pros here, I needed to stop and put this into perspective: I am in a commune with three very different artists, all here for the same reasons! So incredible an experience, to be united by the common thread of expressing oneself through the visual arts! While our portfolios look drastically different from each other, one can't deny that we all have a passion for the ethereal, the bigger-than-reality genre of art, and can't wait to get this thing kicked off.
I hate the idea of making this post without an image, so here is a group shot of the four of us:
Clockwise from far right: David Kegg, Jonathan Duncan, Jarrod Evans, Josh "Sunshine" Johanson
I don't handle emotions in a typical way. I don't escape or suppress them, but I rarely get to express more intense things, like crying. Over a year ago I rationalized that crying wasn't going to help me out once I understood why I wanted to cry, and what I was going to do about it, and how it wouldn't be worth crying later. I don't get to experience the present often, and I am going to pay dearly for that, if I haven't already.
I don't believe this image counts as venting through art. I drew this fenced-in tree when I couldn't really do anything else. It wasn't how I felt at the time, it wasn't a need I expressed, and it wasn't trying to understand myself better. It was, physically, performing the only task I could—no, not out of anger or grief—out of confusion. I don't need anger or grief to create something, especially when much of my images come from outside of myself.
In closing, good afternoon! I hope your Saturday has been relaxing, regardless of stressors.
A few weeks ago Art Order's Jon Schindehette delivered a call for all artists interested in having him as a mentor. Many artists entered their names with work examples, reasons for entering, and long term goals. I am honoured to be among the five artists he chose, as detailed in the latest post.
Jon has survived the position of art director at Wizards of the Coast ("survived" chosen because I cannot fathom being working such a demanding position) and has many exciting things to teach me, and I can't wait for us to get started!
Finally, here's an image for the Sci-Fi portfolio. I realized I hadn't uploaded it here.