Usually silence means I'm busy meeting deadlines etc. I had a bunch this past month. My job for National Geographic for Kids became more demanding in Feb. I didn't do my News Letter that you can sign up for if you want to get things I don't post here. The covers for The Week Magazine have been more challenging since they don't want the exaggeration they originally hired me to do. It was a slow transformation over a number of years. I'm starting to treat them more like a comic book illustration. They still like something dynamic but more based in natural proportions etc.
A lot of younger or newer artists that paint often say they never know when to stop on a painting and then they over-work it. Or they never know when it is done. I feel I usually know when to stop, especially on an illustration because there is a clear deadline. The trickier things are when there is no deadline, and the subject matter is more subjective. Then you just have to know internally what you want the end result to look like. In this case I had the poses I knew I wanted but the back ground?
This is a sci-fi illustration. The bg is totally up to me. I wanted enough information in it to put the figures in context. I was riffing off of one of my favorite artists I looked at in Heavy Metal mag. in the 80's, Tanino Liberatore. He always drew/painted Ran Xerox. Being the early 80's and I lived in a small town with not much art scene, let alone European comics scene, no one had any idea who he was or what else he had done. Then I saw a Frank Zappa album in a record store, "The Man From Utopia". Even in my early high school naivete in art I recognized his style. I didn't know much about Frank Zappa but I purchased the record immediately just for the art. I ended up getting several more Zappa albums over the years, but "Man From Utopia" was my first and probably my favorite. Especially since it was weird enough to aggravate my parents!
I've been sitting on this image in the "almost" finished stage for several months. I still need to tweak it but I don't know if most people will really see a difference from what it looks like right now.
I've always liked the grace of some of the animations I occasionally see. I follow a few animators on Instagram and it's so simple looking. I know that's the trick, it appears simple but it's not easy to do. Throwing abandon to the coffee spirits, I began toying around with the style in my sketchpad at a cool little coffee shop on West Broadway and Canal St on the edge of SoHo. They don't have a bathroom for customers so I never stay for more than one cup of coffee! It's small and intimate and I always hear interesting conversations when I'm there.
I started with a circle or oval for the head. That is all I got. I have no philosophy or direction behind it other than trying to be aware that I'm not breaking the spaces up too evenly. I never took a class on it, but I know what I like when I see it.