Tuesday, July 30, 2013

SCULPTURE - Monster Heads! Pt.1

My family and friends who know me well are familiar with my love of GIANT MONSTERS!  I have grown up watching GODZILLA and just about any movie with humongous creatures in it.  This summer, one of my favorite movies is "Pacific Rim" where giant "Mech Robots" piloted by humans defend the earth against "Kaiju" (a Japanese word for...you guessed it...giant monsters).

Since most of my projects take such a long time, I decided to try some quicker sculpture "sketches" for a change.  No preliminary drawings...just winging it as I sculpt.  So, for fun, I'm starting a series of "Monster Heads".  This is the first of more to come!

I won't belabor the process...it's similar to all of my other sculpture projects posted on this blog.  I began with a nail hammered into a piece of wood I got at a craft store.  After wrapping the nail with wire, I added aluminum foil to fill out the bulk of the shape.  Then sculpey is applied, and away we go!

Here is the basic creature.  I didn't take a bunch of photos along the way, because the shapes kept changing as I played...I didn't want to slow down to snap some pics.  The "pink" clay is "super sculpey", the gray is a mix of "super" and "firm sculpey".  The "firm" is too hard and crumbly.
Next, I started adding details...bumps, wrinkles, cracks, scars.  I really didn't take a lot of time fussing with all the details...just wanted to lock in on the essence of what the character looks like.

The painting process takes a while...and again...I didn't take a bunch of photos.  These pics give an idea of the "glazing" that I do.  I started with a base of red acrylic...then a wash of watered-down black.  I then "dry brush" colors on top, building subtle transitions as I go.  This is repeated over and over until I get what I like.
Below is the final color scheme.

Just for fun, I decided to goof around with the colors in Photoshop...just to see what other monsters of this species might look like where ever they come from.
That's it for now...got to go make another monster head!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

SKETCHBOOK: "Pirates at the Station"

I had a lot of fun today!  I attended my first "sketch-crawl" with a group I belong to on Facebook..."Urban Sketchers: Midwest".  They meet up once a month in various places...the group is lead by artist/author Cathy "Kate" Johnson.  This time around the destination was UNION STATION in Kansas City.  There is an exhibit on display called "Real Pirates".  I didn't feel like paying the $19 to sketch in the exhibit hall...so I just wandered inside the beautiful historic station.

The model above was a fiberglass sculpture near the ticket booth.  I had to laugh...this pirate must have been very bad...his fate is worse than having to walk the plank...he's the "Photo-Op Pirate". If I heard it once, I heard it about 50 times in an hour and a half while sketching, "Okay...everybody say AAARRRRRRR!!!"  The kids were hilarious...they either climbed all over this guy...or were so scared they wouldn't come within ten feet of him!
After sketching the pirate in my usual, slow, detailed manner...I decided to FORCE myself to do looser, quicker "light studies" in the station.  Not sure I like them as much, but I think it might be a good exercise to do again.  Many of my favorite artists in the sketch groups on FB are very loose and free.  I tend to deep-dive into the details.
 After eating a late lunch with my fellow sketchers at "Harvey's" in Union Station (and sharing our sketchbooks around the table...fun!),  I headed home.  Well...I thought that's where I was headed.  On the way to the garage, I saw this awesome 80-year-old fire truck.  Had to draw it, of course!