On the Street


It’s times like this I want a cell phone camera…rainy January bus ride…Dude has the weird-coolest umbrella I have ever seen. These pictures do not do it justice. Sure, it’s basically an ad for Kraken Rum, if you know what the stuff even is, but otherwise, dude’s carrying a funky octopus umbrella. I kept staring at it; I really wanted to ask to touch it. Too bad I am so socially repressed. It was awesome.

This, though, is perhaps the ultimate in sculptural squamous-ness….

Kraken 3

Week in Review

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Another week…a warm, slow autumn finally turning brisk and hinting at snow… the perks of working beside the Art Institute’s Culinary School restaurant… pan-seared scallops in white wine butter sauce with spinach, tender flavorful perfection at fast-food prices… Thursday night at the Carnegie Museum of Art, sketching and enjoying the massive Duane Michals photography show… a bit of drawing here and there, more desire than time. Still, I’m pleased with what I accomplished.



Week in Review

2014-06-30 Rider 2014-07-01 sketches rev2014-07-02 sketches 22014-07-04 brown coat 2014-07-05 Carry the jacket_00012014-07-02 horse

Time to review another week’s work, but it was a tough week. Lots of reasons. It seems I have less and less to show for myself, though I do draw every day. Maybe my standards are higher than my skill set or maybe I’m burning out. I’m prone to that. Maybe it’s time for an art-vacation. Wonder what the shape of that would be?

But I did do some things, and some of the most throwaway drawings are the ones I like the best. Started on the bus….the wobbly line is really noticeable to me, but it doesn’t detract too much from the sketch. I really like this one; he’s lost in his thoughts on the Monday morning commute. Another bus sketch and some ladies on lunch break…the one on the left was a self-content matron as round and dimpled as she could be and the woman on the right was another of those leggy girls who seem to wear short skirts to show off their knickers in public. Lotta leg there, Miss! A much more sedate crowd mid-week….I could have drawn the woman at the top all day…she was standing in the atrium taking a phone call and as she talked ,she turned. So many good poses, but I only did one. I hope I see her again; she was perfect. The horse is a doodle at my desk at work, something from an ad in the paper…The Fourth of July gave me a long weekend, which meant I had time and attention to dabble in watercolor again.

Or work a bit larger… the man with the jacket over his shoulder is larger than I usually do, which was fun. He’s my favorite this week and one I did in a few minutes because I was about to meet my sister in the evening and had nothing to show for myself! It really does work to make your objectives public, sort of peer pressure as artistic cattle prod, though for me it’s a kind of torture that probably isn’t that healthy. But I guess quality doesn’t matter so much at this stage in the work, I just have to keep at it. This just wasn’t my week.

Week in Review

2014-06-23 Sketch cap2014-06-25 big man2014-06-24 Espadrilles sm 2014-06-27 woman with turban sm2014-06-26 Nonchalance 70s style 2014-06-27 sketch1 sm2014-06-29 aqua sm mid

More people watching on my lunch breaks (marker line drawings) … a pencil drawing from reference… playing around with styles on a suit-guy (he looks so 70s!) The one on the left needs to be colored in with black ink and then have a psychedelic though cloud bloom from his head à la Milton Glaser or Peter Max. I like the wobblier one on the right, too; it’s a bit more like the way I used to draw. On Friday, I got luck to get the back corner seat on the bus one morning (I can brace my leg to keep the paper steady enough to draw) and even luckier at the subject who sat near me: jaunty cap, great long beard, and as a bonus, he fell asleep. Today, I dabbled in watercolor. The original intent was to combine the watercolor with marker, but I liked it as it was and stopped.

These weekly reviews always seem way too sparse. I have so much enthusiasm to do things, so many ideas, but find myself always short of time and capacity. I just plain wear out. Maybe that’s why they say you need to start a career like this when you are young; I have the desire, but I don’t have the energy of a 20-year-old. I’m going to have to use experience and wiles to make up the shortfall. Right?

Drawing Around Town

In the Lounge 2014-03-21 morning commute

I’ve been having a lot of fun lately drawing from Mike Mignola’s The Amazing Screw-on Head, which I will post soon–his style is so cool!–but to balance that I’ve been drawing from what’s around me. The first was in a lounge at One Oxford Square, and I was lucky enough to find people absorbed in paperwork/CNN. I like the way it came out, mistakes and all, though I have to apologize to the lady, who didn’t come out too charmingly. She was perfectly attractive in real life. And I ran out of room for her feet; a real shame because I especially loved the big curving forms of her legs which ended in tiny, pointed feet, just like Botero’s women.

The other, I accomplished on a moving bus with a pen at the end of its line (pun intended). It isn’t quite as “smooth” as I would like, but I’m pleased with it anyway. I don’t usually tackle a subject like this.