Thursday, May 30, 2013

Sneak Peek of "Anima Sola" for Enchanted Visions

Got started on the coloring of "Anima Sola" this evening.  I'm calling it the night. ^^  Here's a cropped view of the work in progress.

I'm really liking the way her eyes turned out.  I usually start working from the surrounding area inwards toward the central figure, but I started with her face on this one.  I have the poppy detail still to go, but this piece is probably 50% or more done already. ^^

Update from April's Sketch Fest

I have unfinished sketches piled up on my work desk shelf from all the Sketch Fest events I participated in and it does not please me to have work floating around.  I tried to find time to get to them one at a time, but it still feels not often enough and progresses too slowly... all in all, very frustrating. ^^;

I finally got around to ink this angelfish sketch from April 2013.  This was done to a prompt, "Black Lace".  I got the feeling that the prompter was probably looking for something sexy with a woman in the image with black lace incorporated, but when I thought of the phrase, the image of the angelfish variety known as "black lace" just popped up, and I had a mental image of this lace fish to go after. ^^  I love it when inspiration works like that!

On the other hand, the Enchanted Visions Project's theme for May did not inspire me.  It's "Anima Sola" (Latin for "lonely soul").  The notion is steeped in Christianity (Catholic), and it's a rather popular imagery in Mexico and some parts of Italy.  Basically, from what little I understand, it's often depicted as a woman with hands in shackles (but the chains are broken), in flames (meant to symbolize purgatory), and looking up at heaven.  The concept is it (can be he or she) is a lonely soul in purgatory needing the help (prayer) of both the living and the holy to ascend to heaven.

When a theme gets specific like this, we tend to see the same thing start to pop up from the member artists.  This has been predictably so this month with renditions of the typical "woman with dark hair and eyes with flames all around her" being submitted already.  Theme like this is a big turn-off for me.  I like themes that give us almost nothing to go on, just wide open for interpretation.  Like, "Shades of Blue".

Also, the struggle for a balance between commercially successful piece vs. artistically inspired piece for a given theme is something I ponder every month.  I see in many member artists a great tendency to deliver pretty, eye candy stuff that seem irrelevant to the theme.  I'm not saying that there's anything wrong with it.  As professional artists we need to paint and draw things that have appeal to the buyers.  But I also wonder that the stagnation that I feel about Enchanted Visions as a project itself might have something to do with the themes not being practical for many of the member artists.

After a few hours of scribbling, I'm settling on this one and probably just go on ahead with it.  I did a lot of variations in the flowers that were "interesting" to me, but I am concerned that things go a little out of control and started to go astray from the theme.  The theme has a message and the challenge is to stay true to that message, and in order to do so, I feel a certain level of adherence to the widely accepted imagery is necessary.

This is just a pencil rough for the concept.  I most likely will just work on this very loosely this time.  I am just not feeling inspired to spend much time on this theme.  ^^;  It's starting to feel like a boring homework that I'm only doing it for grades.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Art from Sketch Fest #37

The Sketch Fest #37 took place on Mother's Day weekend.  I had so much going on I couldn't participate at all on Friday.  Overall, this SF was less productive than my average.  I'm behind in posting things, so I won't bother with the incomplete sketches, but just post what I've finished.  (Sketch Fest has a nasty habit of accumulating unfinished sketches which start to feel like a mountain of homework... ^^; )

A quick snap shot of "Princess of the Sea" ACEO in ink & watercolor on vellum (140 lb.) which was done to the prompt "Crown of Pearls, Shells, and Stars".  This is kind of like a sister to my "Jellyfish Dance" ACEO which was done in similar style and color scheme.  This one is much prettier in person than the photo captures.  ^^;  I have 4 more inked and ready to color pieces and a single pencil scribble that still needs inking from SF 37.  I'm sure I'll get around to them ... eventually. XD

Saturday, May 18, 2013

$1 Original ACEO Auction

My "Magnolia Sprite" ACEO (This is an ink & watercolor ORIGINAL!!) is now up for an auction starting at $1.00.  It is listed at the Fantasy Art Auctions web site.  There are a lot of wonderful originals, prints, and digital downloads from many of my artist friends, too.  So please stop by and check out this new auction site dedicated to fantasy art. :)

And here's an update from the Sketch Fest #36...  I finished this one a while ago.  Just forgot to post it here on my blog. ^^;

And these, too.

I'll be putting the kitten one and the fairy sitting on a toadstool one up for auctions in the coming weeks at the same site I mentioned above.  So watch for them if you're interested in snagging them to add to your collection. :)

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Second Update on Pieces from the Sketch Fest 36

Two more ACEOs finished this afternoon: "Forget Me Not" and "Magnolia Sprite".  Both were done in ink & watercolor.  I can't believe I gave the Magnolia Ssprite's wings highlights.  That was tiny and tedious! XD I love the way it turned out though.  Time well spent.

I have been too busy to tackle my stash of sketches made during last month's Sketch Fest.  I still have four more ACEOs to finish, and then some larger pieces as well.  The next Sketch Fest is looming on the horizon... ^^;

Busy with so many projects of different kinds -- not just art.  It's all good! :)

EDIT: (May 8, 2013) Just colored another ACEO that was sitting in the same stash.  Here's "Kitten in a Teacup".  Judging from the response I'm seeing of people, this may turn into a series...

Friday, May 3, 2013

Huronna's Animated Tags Made with My Images

One of my new friends in the tagging community, Huronna, makes wonderful animated tags.  I love what she does with my art!  All of her tags are very well made with attention to detail.  This one below, using my "Unless" (The multi-layer tube is available from PSP Tube Stop for $1.80.), has animation done on her eyes, doll's left arm, kitten's eyes, and glittering ribbons & pearls.  PSP Tube Stop's Terms of Use have been recently changed to allow 'tasteful animation', which opened up a whole another dimension of possibilities.  To be honest, I had a bit of apprehension about the TOU change, but I've come to realize that the tagging community is quite possibly the most respectful of the artists' works out there.  I am delighted with what Huronna has done with my tubes.

Click on the image to see the tag full size. :)

Here's another one, using my "Lady of Compassion" tube (This multi-layer tube is available from PSP Tube Stop for $1.80.)  Some may already know, but this was an artwork done after the 2011 devastation of north eastern Japan.  So it's a very personal piece and one of my personal favorites.

Click on the tag to see it full size.

I love the overall mood of this tag.  The gentle movement reminiscent of water reflection on the columns in the background is subtle yet effective, and I love the positioning of the mother deer and how she looks up at the Lady.  The quote by George Elliot is perfect.

This next one is delightful.  It was one of my darker works (You may not think so by looking at the tube version, but the original artwork had bloody eyeballs among the glass marbles, which bring a whole new story to the seemingly innocent image of a little girl playing with a kitten. :)  The multi-layer tube of this image is available from PSP Tube Stop for $1.80.  The multiple layers included in the tube lets you play with separate elements within the original artwork, giving you a lot of creative possibilities.)

Click on the image to see this tag full size.

I love the blinking of the girl, the rolling marbles, and the moving lights within the marbles at the kitten's feet.  I had a lot of fun with this artwork, and I'm delighted to see the animated tag, adding life to the image.

And here's a tag made with my "Pansy" tube (Available from PSP Tube Stop for $1.80.  This one also is a multi-layer tube that is fun to play with.)  I think this girl's eyes beg to be animated. XD  Plus, the butterfly wings!   It's so fun to see my girls come to life.

Click on the image to see this tag full size.

Here's another tag made with one of my darker images.  This one used my "A Dark Undercurrent", a mermaid/siren who likes to collect and show off human skulls.  This tube is available at the PSP Tube Stop. I love the animated water and sparkling gems on this tag.  The overall color scheme is so harmonious and beautiful.

Click on the image to see this tag full size.

I'm going to wrap up this blog entry with three tags using my Catrina artwork.  The skull painted faces for the celebration of Dia de los Muertos are one of my favorite things to paint.  Thank you, Huronna, for allowing me to post your wonderful animated tags! :)