I've got nothing new to show you

but that doesn't mean I haven't been doing anything.

Of course on the night I planned to update my journal, I had a variety of personal drama fall on me that is causing static in my head and making ordering my thoughts a trial. 

*deep breaths* 

So, not really a lot to say tonight. Mostly wanting to stick to my goal and keep my weekly updates on schedule. 

I have been working on my illustration and it is finally going where I want it to. Or somewhere I could want it to. 

I have been doing some really fun stuff at my new job. I don't know if I'm allowed to post it here, and it's all in process right now anyway, so once it's done, I'll find out if I can. There will be thumbnails and sketches and all SORTS of fun. 

I have a big personal project that ended back on the back burner this month. I want to fix that. 

I have new ideas for new projects. I have made very loose sketches which I was going to refine but was then called away to help a friend wrangle her 2-year-old. 

I have networking things to get done tonight and I really just want to draw. I'm stressed out and irritated and long to lose myself in art. But I will be responsible first and do work like an adult. 

But I'll do it quickly and efficiently and then work on art.

And hopefully by next week I'll have something new to show you.


October is a Roller Coaster

I know I missed last week. 

I wanted to have something new to show you. 

I finished a thing's not really that great. It was an old doodle that I wanted to complete and so I did but it is just kind of...I guess the reason I never finished it before is that it wasn't quite working for me then and that didn't change. 

It was an enjoyable exercise. I watched episode after episode of Ghost Whisperer while I worked on it. There were definitely some design things I got out of it because by doing, we learn. But it still isn't that...GOOD. 

Well, here:

I like some of it. But other parts are just off and the overall thing feels off balance and doesn't work, as a whole. 


Sometimes that happens. 

It's okay. 

If I were really in love with this design concept, or other people were really in love with this design concept, maybe I'd try redoing it. Heck, maybe I still will some day if I'm bored and somehow have time on my hands. But for now I have brushed off my hands and walked away. 

Right now I'm working on another illustration that is determined to give me fits. 

I had an idea while out hiking, the way one does from time to time -- an image that I really liked thought would be a) super beautiful and b) a companion piece to another illustration of mine. But...I don't know if it is because I didn't get around to starting it for a few days while the weather was awful and I was poking around with a bit of silliness that my best friend and I came up with and the idea had lost clarity, or if it is simply one of those times when bringing an image to realization is just a struggle because of lack of skill or a mental block or the wrong approach, but for whatever reason, it is, at this point, a very frustrating project. 

I'll probably open it up and work on it some in a few minutes. 

By which I mean, open it, realize the face is STILL wrong, and delete and hope it is better for the third or fourth time in a row. 

But I won't work on it too long. 

Because I have to get up early.

Because I have a job. 

That's RIGHT. 

Two weeks into unemployment, I was hired by a company that seems REALLY cool. I like the environment, the people seem great, my job duties and the way I'll be working sound great, and i will be getting to do proper design and illustration. 



This is definitely a case of "Tons of people will be seeing my work and I have been a fake all this time and I just KNOW that within a week they will realize they made a huge mistake and they will kick me out unceremoniously and possibly throw things at me'. 

Oh god I'm so scared. It is pretty much everything I was hoping for and I am SO worried I'm going to screw it up.

But also excited. 

Also very excited.



Big Changes and Small Steps 


I am right up against the end of my week because it has been a weird one. I haven't gotten much art done. 


aaaaannnnddd turns out that the coffee shop closes at 10:30 on Sundays, so now I am home and continuing this post here. 

So, as I was saying, it was a weird week. 

Freaking weird

Perhaps not as weird as Mark and Joanne trying to get the sound working for Marueen's spoken word poetry show, but still pretty weird. 

On Monday, I went to work and read the email informing me that my company was planning to lay off 1500 workers worldwide. Later that day I was called into the leadership office and informed of my options, regarding the dissolution of the marketing department. 

So, I am now a slacker unemployed artist. 

And my hands smell like steak so I need to move my cat off my computer cord and go wash my hands before I continue. 


That's much better. Now they mostly smell like my roommate's peppermint soap, vanilla lotion, and almost not at all like steak. 

Anyway, I didn't get any art done at Santa Rosa Toy Con, because i actually ended up pretty occupied the whole time, and due to the weird/stressful/uncertain nature of the past week, I didn't get a lot of art done since then. I have mostly been busy staving off crippling waves of panic and trying to decide what I want to do with my life now. And how to direct myself towards the things I think I'd like doing and making lists of things I need to accomplish.

That, and spending some somewhat irresponsible time going to concerts and music festivals and letting friends take me out to lunch out of sympathy. 

But mostly the crippling panic. 

Tomorrow I start working towards my goals in earnest. I guess I finally have that time I've been looking for to update my portfolio, and that's task one. I intend to camp out in my coffee shop and work on making a new layout and adding pictures of stuff I've done more recently than 2013. Streamlining to maybe exclude some stuff that isn't actually relevant to my strengths. Fleshing out the illustration and graphic design areas a bit. Taking deep breaths and reminding myself that at least I live in California and if I become homeless, it doesn't get too terribly cold at night. 

But in the meantime, since I don't have anything new to show you of my own, I'd like to show you some art from a couple of spectacular artists I chatted with at ToyCon: 

Ken Berman --industrial inspired art


And Matt Gaser -- Illustrator/Concept Artist

Seriously, both of these guys have art so pretty I could die. Do yourself a favor and go over to their websites and take a look through their work. 

Also, I WANT to post a link to the gorgeous poster I got from the Conor Oberst/M. Ward/Felice Brothers show at the Phoenix Theater last week, but I can't find any information about the art or the artist or any posts of it online, but be assured it is GORGEOUS and I have posted it right where I can see it from my workstation (see: bed where I curl up with my computer and cat and draw) and it can remind me to get off my butt (on my butt?) and make some art. And you wish you had one because it is super pretty.

That's all for this week. 

I hope to have things shiny and new to show you sometime within the next seven days. 


FOUND the poster artist! I contacted the Phoenix and they sent me a link to his website. 

His name is Charles House, and though the poseter is NOT up on his website, here are a few other examples of his work: 


Three Weeks and Counting, Regardless of the Unfeeling Void

Well, what I had planned to be a relaxing evening in my local coffee shop has been somewhat derailed due to personal strife, and though I just want to go home and curl up under the covers with an entire batch of brownies and my cat, I AM here and posting my weekly update and getting some work done, damnit. 

The thing I have learned to count on best in life is that plans WILL go awry. This is a lesson I have been taught over and over again. But if you stop every time you get punched in the face by life, you have nothing to show for it all but a face full of punches. So you best squint out your good eye and keep going because at least then you'll have some progress to show for it all. 

This is not to say that I never let myself be stymied by the roadblocks in my path, or that I never crawl under the covers to cry. But I'm trying to hold, at least as much as I can, to a policy of doing my work, and THEN crying about the unfair entropy of the universe. 

So there's your bit of depressed vagueblogging for the evening. 

Now some art. 

I started both of these a while back, and while I had aspirations of them both being done before this year's SF Pride celebration, for my own edification as much as anything else, I hit a bit of a wall, artistically, due to some of those personal factors that I am trying to keep from getting me down, and then I was working on that trouble-making piece of freelance, and the weather was awful and hot and well, you get my drift. Work fell off a bit. A lot. 

But this past week I finally finished the second piece and now I share with you, gay gay merfolk! If the coffee shop wifi decides to play nice. (Why do I do this here again?)

I had originally planned on going in a cute cartoony direction with this, but I am glad I chose this more illustrative style instead. I really like how this one turned out. 

This is the second piece: 

This one, I knew what colors I wanted to go with from pretty early on, but I'm not as pleased with the finished product as I was with the first one. I think I lost some of the grace and stylization due to my lower proficiency with the male form, and so the result is anatomically a little iffy but not in an intentional way like the first one is, in a weird, in-between, neither fish nor fowl fashion. Haha! Fish. Still cute. But lacking the pop of the merladies. 

However, my goal is to learn from my deficiencies and move on to the next project. 

So expect more, and hopefully better, art soon! 

In semi-related news, I plan on going to the Santa Rosa toy and comic convention tomorrow and hope to do some sketches of people there, so maybe next week, if I have anything presentable, I'll post a bit here. 

In unrelated news, I think the girl sitting next to me is being harassed by the guy next to her. He has very much the vibe of 'random hitting on a girl who's trying to do homework dude' and she has very much the attitude of 'girl trying to do homework but being polite to the dude invading her space because that's what we are taught to do'. 

More next week, party people. 




Work Art

Well, well, well. Two weeks in a row. 

Where's my cookie? 

What's that? I'm an adult and if I want a cookie I have to get it my own darn self? That just sounds unfair. 

I'm, once again, taxing the coffee shop's wifi to upload art, but this time, not because the weather is so hot that my apartment is unbearable, this time just because i like hanging out in the coffee shop and working. I feel like it is one of the privileges of being a graphic designer and sitting in a coffee shop to work just feels so cozy and lovely. 

I also have a mild cold so I'm slightly loopy and waiting for the Tylenol to kick in and delete the fever I was sporting when i got home from work. 

Where I make art. 

(When I'm lucky)

Some of which I will now share with you. 

(insert eloquent introduction that encompasses art and the world and what art means to us as people and the passion I am able to put into my work, drawing on a collective unconscious that stretches back to the earliest cave paintings)

With all that deep stuff I just totally said in mind, here are some of the pieces I have done at work, timeless in their simplicity, with a message that I believe, speaks to us all on some level. 

And in a related vein, here is a portrait I did of our beer Buyer, thought we all find endless amusement in the fact that with the font I used, it kind of looks like it says "Beer Buger". Choose your fonts wisely, kids! 

Since I am apparently posting about all the booze tonight, this was a sign I made for some wine. A wine sign.


So I guess the obvious next place to go from the ocean would be fish, but since I like to be unpredictable, instead, here's a sign I made for Irish soda bread, which I'm sure goes great with wine. 

And for um....breakfasty stuff?

And other breakfast stuff (I won't lie -- I love this one. I had some time to work on it and I customer service keeps telling me it makes them want pancakes. I tell them that means it's working.)

And well, I've got nothing clever to say but here's some fruit. 

And another of my favorites: 

That's all for tonight. I have some other work art that I've uploaded but batteries run low -- both for me and and for my little hardworking laptop. They will be seen in another post, another night. 

I hope the evening (or whatever time you are currently enjoying) is treating you well.