Unfinished finish…

There isn’t always a visible finish line…

I was struggling this morning.

It was one of those days where color was meaningless. They all looked the same to me. Nothing worked well, even the tones that by definition work.  I couldn’t see it.  Shapes had no form.  Value had no value. It sucked.

My way of getting stuff out rarely deviates from: Idea – Sketch – Finish.  More often than not, and when faced with a time crunch, I skip the second step and start finishing as soon as the idea hits me. It’s a luxury and a skill I’ve cultivated after years of… years. I didn’t consciously try to develop it… it just happened from sheer repetition.

Anyway, back to this morning.

You know what the worst part was? I was getting frustrated. I was getting REALLY frustrated. When I get frustrated I can either become great (also known as lucky) or a jerk who never wants to create again. I don’t know what was making it more difficult for me: that I wasn’t satisfied with what I was churning out or that I wouldn’t have anything to post today.  That the schedule I’ve adhered to for nearly a year would be disturbed. Maybe they were all bothering me equally.

I’d invested a good chunk of my morning on the portrait of me in the style of Alphonse Mucha… testing the design limits of Procreate’s UNDO feature and just piling on layer after test layer.

“If I can’t figure this out and finish in 20 minutes, I’m moving on.”

To a civilian, that doesn’t appear to be the abject HORROR that it is to someone like me. And even when you DO finish something you never REALLY think it’s finished.

My day is ruined already at 3:27 a.m. and no one but me is awake to know it.

But then I realized that in my “process” with today’s piece, I’d completed two of the three steps. I took another look at the messy sketch I was working off of and suddenly it became beautiful. I could see the engineering… the scaffolding beneath the surface that I couldn’t provide. All the stuff that I did to get me to where I needed to go was there…I just couldn’t get there.

Every now and then we all need a refresher on how we got to now. If you change direction along the way… it’s okay. You tried.

So it’s finished.

And tomorrow I’ll do it all over again.

Categories: art

To my amazing, wonderful, complicated and beautiful wife on her birthday…

First time I ever drew Lez. 2007 Sketchbook.

To my wife Lezley, on her birthday…

I’ve been drawing you for 13 years. But when EXACTLY did it start?I have records, I can figure that out.

Yesterday I dug through dozens of sketchbooks (and some other living things) to find the precise page in the precise sketchbook when I committed you to my life for the first time.

And by life, I mean my sketchbook.

The page itself isn’t dated, but the sketchbook was started in March 2007. Doing a bit of math and seeing how far into the book it was, I’d estimate that this sketch was done toward the end of the summer, probably late August.  Also because you’re sporting a lighter colored purse and are wearing capri pants, short sleeves and flip flops. I may be off by a few days or so… but most likely not.

I must’ve really liked you. Wasn’t too sure if you OR Lauren liked me… but I liked you. I remember making a copy of this and your mom put it up on her refrigerator. That’s the Lourvè to dudes like me… and the quickest way to know that I’m doing something right.

Heh… must’ve liked you… that’s insane. Anyone who spends more than ten minutes with you will fall in love with you. You have that power to make people open up and be at ease. It’s gotta be the warmth of your smile. Or that laugh. You have the best laugh in the world… period. If I could ever figure out how to accurately draw your laugh it’d be the last thing I ever draw… because everything out of my pen after that is downhill.

I drew you happy. I couldn’t read you well yet, but you were always smiling when I saw you. If you notice, I also had you wearing the necklace I bought you for your first birthday we were an “US”. Nice little detail there.

13 years later, I’ve lost count at how many times I’ve draw, painted, sculpted, inked, colored, watercolored and carved you. But I think I’ve gotten better… still hoping I manage to get that one perfect image… but then again, the journey to get there is what it’s about.

I’ve said to you 2,284,635 times: I wish you could see yourself the way that I (or anyone who knows you) sees you.

But you don’t like this, you don’t like that about yourself. Too big, too small, too this, too that… whatever.

It’s all you… and you are beautiful, both inside and out. You are amazing both inside and out. I’m never going to stop telling you that.

From the first drawing to the last… you’re an amazing and beautiful pain in the ass, but I’m lucky to have you as a model to draw.

Happy Birthday Sweetheart. Love you.

Categories: life

Bob Face Masks now available…

Bob Face Masks…

 

 

 

 

I never thought I’d ever say this… but Bob the Squirrel face masks are now available in the Society6 shop.

Initially, I wasn’t going to make something like this available… this pandemic is a tragedy we all are affected by… and I didn’t want to profit from that.

But Society6 will be donating a portion of all face mask sales to help in COVID-19 relief efforts. AND, I get asked about Bob masks about every other day.  So, here they are!

Click or tap on the image above or go to https://society6.com/squirrelosophy/masks to check out the designs. All masks are 20% off today.

They’re high quality and washable. Have a little fun with being safe… this illness is not going away anytime soon.

Categories: Uncategorized