daily drawing

100 Day Project: Days 81-90

This last portion of the 100 Day Project has gone rather slowly. With the holidays, there was plenty to do: commissions, family gatherings, parties with friends, the calendar and more. Still, I have plowed through to complete the project. It was a little stressful and disappointing to realize that the project may not be completed by the end of 2015. I even schemed on sketching one and hour on New Year's Eve or New Year's Day to rush and finish it. In the end, I decided to keep it going through the first week of 2016. This way, I can finish it right. 


Day 81 The most important thing is the thing most easily forgotten

I finally tried my hand at weaving. It was really fun and brought back sewing skills I learned when I was younger. I learned to do needlepoint, embroidery and knit from my aunt and mom when I was a kid, so I felt I was applying a similar skill set here. Even though I had to plan some things, like deciding to make triangle shapes, I also let some of it be more free. I will definitely be making more of these. 


Day 82 Look closely at the most embarrassing details and amplify them

Ah, my old Mazda 626. This car was a real gem. Rust holes in the back by the window, Gap sucks sticker, Nike Sweatshops sticker, weird jimmy-rigged way to open the trunk, piles of cassettes and no air conditioning. This brown hatchback was my first car and although I loved it, it was a bit of a mess. The embarrassing detail here is that I now wear Nike's to work out, when I thought I wouldn't be caught dead in them then. We all get older and change I guess.


Day 83 Change nothing and continue with immaculate consistency

This card had me thinking of musicians that create repetitive music. Neu, Liars, Steve Reich, Spacemen 3, Philip Glass, Fela Kuti, Sleep, Can and Brian Eno all have a nice trancelike element to their music. 


Day 84 Give way to your worst impulse

That impulse would be coffee. One of my favorite places to go draw is at B2 in San Jose. It's in a giant room they call "the garage" due to the garage doors along the walls. This means lots of light and space to work. Also lots of people to watch. I happened to run into my friend Gordon De Los Santos this day and sketched him. 


Day 85 Be less critical more often

The sketch

The sketch

The final

The final

This was a really interesting one to me. Sometimes with the 100 Day Project I get an idea and put it right to paper. Other times, I mess around in my sketchbook and then go to paper. If you look at the first picture, you can see this one started out as just scribbles with my brush pen in my sketchbook. As I waved lines around I started to see a sky and then a brushstroke made me imagine words in the sky. Then I made mountains. Then I imagined it was San Jose.  I love this kind of evolution in art. Just intuition going off. 


Day 86 Honour thy error as a hidden intention

With this day, I had finally watched Grey Gardens, the documentary... I loved this shot of Little Edie's legs near a table. I played with the table perspective. I love when artists create odd perspectives in their work. It's something I don't really do but would like to experiment with more often.


Day 87 What mistakes did you make the last time?

Since Day 86 had off-perspective, I decided to draw normal perspective here. Something about the table, rug and flowers felt bland to me so I added a trap door below the table. 


Day 88

Sade has such an interesting voice. It's beautiful, yet so subtle. Not a lot of good singers use such restraint. 


Day 89 Question the heroic approach

I thought painting a road made sense here. I thought the road could be a metaphor for the hero's journey, thinking of the unknown that a hero faces. The first image came out nice, but it sort of bored me. I thought "Hey! I could run it under the faucet and blur it a bit! Hey! I could add lines going across making it more blurry and unclear!" I wanted it to feel like a memory or unsure so I feel that worked out. I'm going to try this technique in a future painting. 


Day 90 Don't stress one thing more than the other

Here I thought I could make a still life and focus equally on all of the objects. I had Bryan select things from around the house and arrange them for me. I thought he did a great job. It has a little bit of an adventurous sailor feel to me. A sign that I need to get back to working on my children's book? Probably. 

100 Day Project: Days 51-60

Last week I attended the Global Meetup for the 100 Day Project. It was such a good time! I met artists that I have been following and met new ones along the way. 

I had a big realization upon hitting Day 60. I realized I need to work in a more concentrated way. It's too easy to reach for my phone or open a new tab. I also listened to a podcast on going on an "information diet" where you really limit who you follow and what you get from the internet. I kind of try to do this anyway, but I realize I need to do it more. 

Day 51 Are there sections? Consider transitions

With 51, I painted the courtyard of a place I stayed at in Grenada, Spain last year. I love how these kinds of homes feel like they consist of different compartments. I actually originally started drawing this for the Cinequest Film Festival live painting event I did earlier this year, but changed it into something else. I'm glad I got to carry it out after all and I'm thinking I will make a really large version of this, maybe 3x4 or 4x6 feet. My favorite part is the tile with the orange and pink hues. 


Day 52 Towards the insignificant

I had the idea to paint a tiny universe for 52. We are not even a pinpoint in this universe (I made that up, maybe it is true, maybe it isn't). The Milk Way galaxy is roughly 100,000 light years in diameter and it's one of billions of galaxies in the universe. How it that for making you feel insignificant?


Day 53 Don't be afraid of cliches

Do you remember these canvas binders? I had a blue denim one that looked quite like this with all the usual blue ballpoint pen clichés. This one made me a bit nostalgic. 


Day 54 Cut a vital connection

I went to Capitola Beach and saw this woman laying in the sun on her pink towel. I loved the way she looked with her red hair falling over her arm. For the photo, I added some sand from my bag to the painting. 


Day 55 Not building a wall but making a brick

I love an A-frame. My thoughts first went to brick, but I knew I didn't want to make it literal. After running through a few ideas, I thought about how you have to shape each piece of wood to build a house. I liked the idea of conveying the same idea with a different material. I love the way this project is stretching my brain. 


Day 56 Look at the order in which you do things

At first I had thought about the way I go about making these daily paintings: pull a card, think, grab a brush or a pencil and go. I thought about other ways I could mix things up with materials. Then, it hit me to look at how many days I have missed and make abstract art about it. I was thinking it would turn out to look like a maze or something that moved fluidly around the paper. It ended up looking like Tetris. I really got into the mathematical aspect of this and sort of felt like I could just make art like this. 

Each row represents each day of this 100 day project so far. The color squares represent how many days I missed until I posted for that particular day (between one and seven). The pencil rectangles represent drawing two in one day as a desperate attempt to catch up (happened 6x). There were only 28 consistent days (though none for more than 3 days). Conclusion: I'm not good at doing things daily. 


Day 57 The inconsistency principle

I had to laugh out loud when I pulled this card! After Day 56 and realizing just how non-daily this project has been, it was kind of the perfect reinforcement that I need to get consistent with this project. I am determined to finish all 100 and I wanted to do so by the end of summer. I am thinking about doing two a day until then.

This one required more math and measuring. It actually plays with the number 11 and that number on all 4 sides since I have 44 left for this project. Again the math and also the transparent layering felt like things I want to pursue in future work. 


Day 58 Just carry on


Day 59

This was a fun one to get. There are so many things that can be faked, but I thought it would be fun to fake a style. At first I thought I would do that of a really famous artist, but decided to do the art in the style of my friend Kyle Pellet. His work can be on old gridded paper, include hilarious descriptions, date stamps, state info for meetings that never happened and more. His color palette is black and white or bright vintage video game colors. I decided to paint Dennis Richmond and Elaine Corral in my own style since I didn't want to fully copy him. It's funny because when I wrote the date, I meant to make it the actual date of the sketch night, which was 8/26/15


Day 60 Don't be frightened to display your talents

I mulled this one over for some time. I think I don't like the word talent, especially when I am thinking of myself. I decided to use one of my sister's travel photos to make this drawing. I received this Blackwing pencil set as a gift recently and thought I'd put it to use on this one. These pencils actually have a really cool history. They were discontinued after being considered the best pencil ever made. They had a cult following and in recent years they have been made again. 

This drawing made me realize I need to take more time with my art sometimes. While I have developed a quick style, I do really love sitting down and working for longer chunks of time. This piece also was successful to me because I was able sit and focus without the usual internet distractions. Got to try this again. 

100 Day Project: Days 21-30

As I slowly creep into being 30% done with my 100 Day Project, I feel a mixture of disappointment and excitement. I feel like I have had the best time on this project...but only when it feels somewhat successful. It's really hard to let go of the perfection and be consistent. I have lots of creative ideas in general, but when it comes to using these Oblique Strategy cards as prompts, I can get stumped or I have the desire to "outdo" myself on previous days. 

I have been quite busy with commissions and design projects, but right now I am between commissions, so I really do feel like it is time to be consistent on this. 

This week, I felt a transformation with the Day 24 and 25. First off, that meant that I was 25% of the way through! The other thing with Days 24 and 25 is that I was stretching some of my technique. It wasn't like I was doing things I hadn't done before, but the transparency and layering was happening much more. With the black hole painting, I woke up, had coffee and worked on it for several hours. That's the ideal way I want this project to go. 

I think this daily project is starting to inspire bigger works. I began this project for pure fun, so it's really interesting to me that I am starting to see some direction. I want to make a return to treehouses, houseboats and mysterious places. I am noticing this group's theme seems to be nature. 

Day 21 Don't be afraid of things because they're easy to do

I painted these ice cubes in 95 degree weather, after working out and riding my bike to and from the place I worked out at. Nope, not too easy. 

Day 22 Where's the edge? Where does the frame start?

With this piece, I wanted the white of the paper to match the white of the internet so that it felt like it was really floating whether on Instagram or this blog. It ended up being a little gray since I didn't go in and Photoshop it. 

Day 23 Abandon normal instruments

Immediately when I pulled this card I knew I would head to the backyard for some natural instruments. I used aloe and red geranium to make this leaf drawing. My tool was the stick which I dipped in water and stabbed through the geranium petals (the purple color). With the aloe, I just smoothed it onto the paper and smeared with my fingertip as needed (the yellow color). I was surprised by the color outcome. 

Day 24 Discover the recipes you are using and abandon them

Ah, it's ones like this that make me feel like I need to do a 180. Thoughts like, "Should I not use watercolor? Should I make something big? Should I use different colors? Should it not even be a drawing or painting?" pop up and make me really think. In the end, I thought that I often paint the moon and use a lot of blues, so this one is all warms and black with a sun. One of my favorite parts is that you can see the sun rays through the mountain, since they were painted first. 

Day 25 Use an old idea

I looked at my shelf of art papers and remembered I had this gridded green paper that we always had around the house when I was a kid. My dad worked at NASA, so engineering books, engineering paper and those green plastic drafting rulers. I think I was inspired by the previous day's sky theme with the sun. 

Day 26 Who should be doing this job? How would they do it?

I had a vision of this scene right when my eyes closed for sleep. I thought I would paint it and thought that Foster Huntington would be the right person for this job. A few years ago, I painted treehouses and I always meant to keep going with that series. I think it's time to get back to it as I am planning on working on some larger paintings this summer. 

One interesting thing is the next day I was watching Particle Fever, a documentary on the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland, and remembered it has the same hexagonal shape. Everything is connected!

Day 27 Define an area as 'safe' and use it as an anchor

I had a few different ideas for this one, but nothing stuck until I decided to take our house, which feels safe, and put in near Anchor Island (in Maori Puke Nui), New Zealand. It looked fairly bland at first and needed more layers in the sky and contrast in the water. It still looks a little saccharine for me, but sometimes you need to just call it done. This is probably why I am drawn to painting the night sky. It's dark and more emotional than a day sky, at least the way I paint them. I've made houseboat paintings, before, but this one gives me the idea to create a larger one. 

Day 28 Water

This scene above is from the backpacking trip I did over the weekend. It was refreshing to see these ponds in the landscape, even if they were few and far between. The looked like oases in the middle of the dry grass. 

Day 29 Allow an easement (an easement is the abandonment of a stricture)

This one came with the following note:

This Bay Area basement apartment is 150 sq. ft., haunted and smells like rotten oranges. Only $4,999 a month. Serious inquiries only. 

This is a response, of course, to the insane housing prices in the area right now. I know a lot of people who have to live back home with their parents or have roommates because they can't afford an apartment or house here. Have a pet? Forget it. It's even harder unless you make $100,000+++++ a year. 

Day 30 Which elements can be grouped?

Of course #30 is inspired by the backpacking trip I did over the weekend. I drew up my supplies and with the exception of toilet paper, clothes and food, I got just about everything I brought with me. 

Only 70 more to go!