Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Problem With Magna Doodles and a "Failed" Daily Life

I don't know if any of you have ever watched the show "Pokemon" or not. The show revolves around a boy who travels the world looking for cute little monsters to trap...or collect. Whatever. He then trains the little guys and takes them to tournaments to fight other pokemonsters. Like a cock-fight with superpowers. I imagine that trying to catch pokemon is only slightly easier than trying to catch a drawing that a two-and-a-half year old has done on a Magna Doodle. I'd been trying to get a good picture (heck, any picture) of this drawing since she was drawing jack-o-lanterns in November. Each new thing from that girl simultaneously thrills, amazes and saddens me. Really, it's one of the most difficult and at the same time rewarding things about watching them grow up. And we've just gotten started!

I started working on some new single illustration "Daily Life's" this week. I'd found this list of 100 themes by Robin Hall at Bubblegum Bullet. While I do have plenty of stories, it seems like it could be fun as well as a good exercise to fit them into the themes...sort of diversify my portfolio, or something. This first one is "Introduction", I'll get to the story in a minute... Ha-ha-ha! First I want to talk about the art. I know that's unusual with the Daily Life drawings, but I don't like this and want to do it over. So I'm going to talk about it.
When I started the Daily Life drawings, they were simple warm-ups that allowed me to work in a relaxed manner and experiment with new techniques. That hasn't changed, but I've been a little surprised with how well they have been received. I'm working on a new cover for Hex right now too, and wanted to try something new... a new way to draw and color the art. So I did this one first. There are a lot of things I like about it, but I don't really care for how the pencil went down on the paper. Originally, when I bought this pad of paper it was to do pencil drawings on. I liked the rough texture and thought it would be a good match. It isn't. So I am switching to a smoother paper next time (either smooth bristol board, or I might try Reeves BFK again), and will try again.
This past weekend I went up to Green Bay with some friends to watch the Super Bowl (Yes we knew the actual game was in Dallas, but you have to watch the Packers win all the marbles in GREEN BAY). For the party, AA (that's double A) made some great pizza using pretzel dough for the crust. There was a lot of work to do in the kitchen, and the game was going to start soon, so I offered to help. Chopping vegetables. I was thinking later how odd it is to greet people coming over with a hand-shake from one hand, while holding a knife in the other. Not the kind of introduction we normally want to have.

Justin told me the other day that I write a lot in my posts. Is it too much? Are you all thinking "More art, less words Jeffrey!"? Leave a comment! Let me know! Until next time, then. Take care and be good.

Your friend,


Amy Johnson said...

definitely not less words! i love reading your posts.

Nance said...

Artists love art. Wordists love words. I like both. Who says artists don't need to write? I love knowing the thoughts and processes behind the work.

I wish that saying, "Pay close attention, Daddy!," would actually make things go slower as your girls grow. It won't. You do. It still helps all of you anyway.

Keith said...

I have come to the ( recent ) conclusion that it is the narrative story that makes people return to certain blogs. So write away.

Red Herring Jeff said...

Ha-ha! Thanks guys! I don't think Justin meant it in a bad way, more of a "Wow! Your blog posts must take forever!" sort of way. I just worry that nobody reads them. I'll keep on writing then.

Nance said...

P.S. I love the new header! I'm about ready for another header remake, myself!

Red Herring Jeff said...

Oh geeze, Nance! Thanks for reminding me that I have to update that with a March one tomorrow! I'm glad you like it. It's something that I've been meaning to do forever, and since I have all the calendar images, I figured I could just use them! Yay!