Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sushi Gremlins - A Work In Progress Post

Work in Progress image (#1) of the Sushi Gremlins.

The working color comp for now for the Sushi Gremlins.  Some tweaks will take place between now and the final.

The original painting was going to be at night.  These are the futile attempts at making that work.
Well, as I showed in the last update, I've started a beast of a painting for a family friend.  The last commission I took on before I declared "no commissions".  The poor guy has been waiting nearly a year for things to calm down enough for me to get started on it.  I'm so grateful to his patience and hope that when it's finished he, and his family, enjoy it.

As I'm sure you noticed there were quite a few comps that were done at night.  The original painting was always meant to be at night.  That was my choice, but when you take on commissions it's about what the client needs more than what you want.  Each of the Sushi Gremlins represents a member of the client's family.  I deliberately tried to keep them asexual and denote the family member by their favorite color as opposed to trying to make each monster look like the person they represent.  Unfortunately, this is where the problem of night and day came into play.  The gremlin on the bottom's 'person's' favorite color is black.  You  can see in the first 4 comps I tried different tints of black, or close to black, but they kept getting lost in the dark background.  (Comps 5 and 6 were just done out of curiosity.)  Once I switched the time of day the bottom gremlin was far more noticeable.

Next week I'll hopefully have some ScareLA sneak peaks ready.  Until then, follow all the Work In Progress posts over on Instagram!

Monday, July 07, 2014

"Dear Prudence" Portrait and the Sushi Monsters

"Dear Prudence"; 4"x6" Gouache on Watercolor Paper; 2014

Well, I can FINALLY cross a project off my to-do list this hiatus!  I've been feeling very lethargic and uninspired this break.  I think I probably burnt my self out last September when I took on 7 paintings in 8 weeks because I just can't get back into a groove yet this year.  I'd like to blame the infernal summer heat, but I know it's just me being tired, lazy and frustrated.  Anyway, as you can see I DID finally finish something!!

Work in Progress Collage compilation from my Instagram.
Prudence, the Boogervampire's sassy older sister, has been pretty popular since her first appearance in "Little Leota's Fortune Telling Kit for Beginners" back in May (April if you count the month it was completed but I couldn't show anyone).  I had people come up to me at Bats Day asking if I had anything with her in it.  "Dear Prudence" is just a quickish portrait and is meant to be a companion to the Portrait of the Boogervampire I did last year.  She'll be turned into a postcard and given out to repeat customers of the Crypt of DOOM and as a 'thank you for your purchase' item next month at ScareLA.

"Dear Prudence" Sketch composite

Fun little 'factoids' about "Dear Prudence", since I know that many of you are starting to notice I like to hide personal shout outs in my paintings.  First and, not so subtile, is the Easy Street Records poster behind Prudence's head.  I grew up in West Seattle and there is this super awesome record store there.  It opened in the early 90's and it was always a fantasy of mine to work there.  Sadly, I wound up only being able to get a job at Blockbuster Music and not Easy Street, but I loved going in there and purchasing bootleg Pearl Jam CD's and other grunge import singles.  I'm so happy that they're still there and hope to take my husband there one day when I'm able to go home for a visit.  Next, and not super personal but kind of funny, is the "Jedi" tag.  A few years back some kid in our neighborhood was running around tagging our building with that.  That's pretty much the tag as I remember it, although I think the 'i' may have been dotted with a heart.  The idea that this kid thought they were so bad ass and cool tagging "jedi" just kind of cracks me up because it just shows how 'nerd culture' is 'mainstream'.  Seriously, everyone that made fun of me for liking what I liked back in the day now likes what I like and think they're bad ass.  It's funny.  Last, a buddy of mine back home used to tag a lot in the late 90's, early 2000s.  He'd send me post cards when I was at college with tags on it.  I really enjoyed getting those post cards.  So now whenever I need to put a tag on something I always throw in one of his.

Sushi Monster Sketch.  It took a million years.  Just FYI.
Up next, starting/finishing some Sushi Monsters!!   I actually have been calling the Gremlins.

A very good family friend asked me to paint his wife and kids as monsters at a sushi bar chowing down.  I DON'T do commissions anymore and this is partly the reason why.  I've had to put the poor guy on the 'wait list' for a year now.  I feel terrible.  He's a very patient and understanding person, which is AWESOME, but my catholic guilt has been beating me up for the last 12 months.  I FINALLY got a break in the schedule and I'm getting things in gear.  I'm still assembling a color comp I'm happy with, so for now you get the sketch.  :)