Thursday, January 28, 2016

Heartbreakers Show

I will have two pieces in the Oakland Drink and Draw Heartbreakers group show. The opening reception will be Friday, Feb. 5 from 5p-7p at Black Spring Coffee Company at 2950 Telegraph Avenue, Oakland, California. Everything is 40 bucks!

Illustration by Justin Lawrence Levine

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Falcon Shenanigans

As I continue to grapple with my aversion to making fan art something just short of magical happened Thursday night at the Quick Draw SF event.

I had a blast sketching six vehicles based on the Millennium Falcon from the Star Wars films. Each ship had a name based on an idiomatic term or expression for a duration of time. My favorites were the "Whythehelldeytakinsolong Falcon" and the "Minute-Plus Falcon". I think Lando Calrissian would appreciate these names, don't you?

I hadn't had this much fun jamming on a topic since the "karju" series started in October of 2014. In fact, I liked these little Falcons so much that I couldn't put a price on them. They combine my love for cartooning and those last, dying embers from a childhood dream of working at Lucasfilm.

As always, thank you to Shayna Yasuhara and Jason Furie for putting the event together and for having me as a guest artist again. It was great meeting some new folks and seeing some really good art.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

BCAF 2016

Be sure to stop by the second annual Black Comix Arts Festival (BCAF) expo in San Francisco from 11a-5pm. I will have a modest selection of books and art for sale.

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
701 Mission Street
San Francisco

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Quick Draw SF January 2016

"There can be only one."

I am excited to have been asked back as a guest artist at the sci-fi/Star Wars-themed Quick Draw SF  event on Thursday, January 21, 2016 from 6pm to 10pm. There will be a DJ, merchandise table, and raffle with cool prizes and a full bar with a limited food menu. I might even decide to suspend my mildly draconian "no fan art" policy for the night.

Quick Draw SF is part of a monthly live drawing series co-curated by Shayna Yasuhara of PAINT PENS COLLECTIVE and Jason Furie of NEVER ENDING RADICAL DUDE. While everyone is welcome to come draw, ten guest artists will have a reserved seat at the event, be included on the promo, and have the opportunity to sell their work at our featured “merch" table...think prints, stickers, zines, small original pieces, etc. The event also features an “Art Wall” where anyone can post their creations from the night.

F8 Bar & Gallery
1192 Folsom St.
Thursday, January 21st

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Dr. Sketchy's SF Stormtrooper

With the disappointment that came with Star Wars: The Force Awakens still weighing on me, I gave tonght's Star Wars-themed Dr. Sketchy's SF a shot. It was an odd combination of lingerie and the iconic helmet design of the original Stormtrooper from Episode IV: A New Hope. I owned one as a kid and never imagined the faceless troops in gleaming white armor as being even remotely erotic. And there I was, decades later taking in a gender-bent life-sized costume-fantasy version of what I saw in the films.
Which brings me to Captain Phasma in The Force Awakens. It was our first time hearing a female voice coming from a stormtrooper's helmet and her silvery armor suggested in the trailer that she might play an important role in the film. It was a tease similar to the "red stormtroopers" that appeared in the Marvel adaptation of Return of the Jedi that turned out to be imperial guards and also delivered similarly wooden performances. In either case, the prospect of seeing something new and exciting was part of the draw to the sequels. New worlds, new creatures and vehicles, all of that stuff made the Star Wars universe unforgettable.
I arrived without a strong black marker or brush pen and had to sacrifice a few poses to various levels of incompleteness. My plan was to use some of the brown walnut ink and white ink along with the white. The paper was from my 6" x 12" Pentalic® Nature Sketch. The white was from a small jar of Kuratake white ink and a Faber-Castell PITT white big brush pen. I had a bottle from a former student was selling her homemade walnut ink at a reception for the spring book arts class at CCSF. It lacked the dark, inky quality of the Tom Norton Designs batch I got from an art store years ago, which also dries with a nice sheen.
 I started with broad washes of the ink of various sizes in preparation for short and long poses. The smaller ones ended up working well for single compositions rather than small ones on each block of color.
Our model's slender physique worked well with the long format of the paper and forced me to push things deep into caricature. The classic silver border from Kenner's original Star Wars toys found its way into several of the sketches.
The helmet also seemed just a bit too big on the petite model, so I had fun playing with that aspect as well. Dr. Sketchy's has always been a place where I could test new tools and techniques with fun and original subject matter. The venue also lets me practice quick decision making and risk-taking in ways that I often forget to do in traditional life drawing classes and with location drawing.
There will be another Dr. Sketchy's SF on January 16 with a Disney/Star Wars mashup theme that should be fun.