I’m currently taking the Schoolism class “Story-Driven Illustrations” by Djamila Knopf. One of the first assignments is to produce an influence map. I’ve never heard of an influence map before doing this, but it’s a cool idea. I’m planning on making one every year or two because it’s a healthy thing to re-evaluate those things that are driving you. The way an influence map works is you start out with a template covered by 30 squares. Each square gets filled with an image that represents a category, theme, idea, etc. that is currently influencing your work. The size of the image represents the amount of influence those concepts have on me. It’s a really fascinating task, particularly because if I would have made one of these right when I started my career, my map would have looked completely different.
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It being Thursday, I thought I would do a “Throw Back Thursday” of one of my first client jobs I’ve done. This illustration is of “Love” for my second collaboration with Gwen Stefani‘s Harajuku Lovers. This is my favorite illustration from that collaboration, the colors and expression came out really nice. This project feels like a life time ago. I’m going to be forever grateful to Jolie, Gwen, and everyone one at Harajuku Lovers for working with me. It was a very special project.
This collage was a fun little experiment I did with my friend Photographer Chadwick Tyler. We had wanted to play around and try things to merge our two styles. One of the first experiments I was curious about trying was hand tinting the photo, so I printed Chadwick’s pictures on transparency paper and painted with oil paint on both sides of the transparency. It gave it a really cool look. I hope you like it :)
I just finished up this portrait of shoe designer Amina Muaddi a few hours ago. I’ve been working on this over the last few days. For the portrait I used watercolor, chalk pastel, color pencil, and gold paint pen. I kept layering it until the tone and expression were right. I’m really happy with how it turned out. I hope you like it. I’m making a video that will be out soon. Any suggestions for a song for the video of this portrait?
I never know when inspiration is going to hit, but I’m very happy when it does. The inspiration for this piece came from my friend Katie Rodgers‘ (PaperFashion) Instagram story a few months back. She had hosted a sketching workshop and asked two ballerinas to model for it. The workshop was in New York. Even though I’m way over here in California, the beauty of the internet made it as though I was there. (Not really… well kinda… ha ha) The pictures from the event were too beautiful not to draw, so I picked up my toned sketch pad and some charcoal, and this sketch of ballerina Cate Hurlin was born. I hope you are having a beautiful Monday. I’m currently a little sick, so laying low today trying to shake it.
Finding the right balance of styles for “Lost in the Crowd” has been a lot of trial and error. I’ve been trying to find my drawing rhythm. When I say rhythm, I mean my natural flow when I draw. I know for just the first chapter there are over 200 panels. With that much drawing I need find a look that is easy to draw, but also fun to draw, something that will keep me excited each time I draw a scene. This sheet was on my early explorations on Yuki‘s design. None of these made the cut, but I wanted to share the journey with you. The good, the bad, and the dank ;)
I know I’ve said it before, but coffee really is my favorite medium to paint with. It has such a soft rich color. This Study Sketch is from a series I started 2 years ago. I call the series “Insta Coffee Sketches”. The series came about when I was deleting pictures off my phone and I realized most of my phone was filled with screen shots of Instagram pictures that I wanted to paint. I printed out all the screen shots, and as my daily warm up, I will sketch or paint with coffee. This portrait is of Mai (im_5868 from instragram). I’m really happy with how this study turned out. I have a lot of trouble with portraits from that angle, but this one came out easily and was a fairly quick study.
Back in 2011, I was asked to be apart of the Linda Vojtova‘s New York Exhibit highlighting her amazing career. This painting was one I did for it, but ended up using a different one. Looking back, I still really like it. The reference I used was from a photo that my friend Chadwick Tyler had taken and let me use. It’s funny how some pieces kinda grow on you over time. This one definitely has. Hope you are having an amazing day!
In honor of seeing my friends Max, Sherri, & the Bemis Family tomorrow… this sketch of their daughter Lucy seemed like the right post. Lucy really needs her own comic book. I am starting on a handful of commissions today and will be working on them for the next few weeks. With Christmas quickly approaching, if you are wanting to buy any originals or prints, it’s best to order sooner than later so I have enough time to get them to you. If there is any piece you want that is not in the store, just comment and let me know which one, and I will try to get it up in the store. I hope you are having a great day.
Drawing faces is one of those things that never gets old. I enjoy it so much. Peoples’ faces are so expressive and interesting. It’s such a fascinating subject-matter. Miyako’s portrait was another by-product of stumbling onto a photo that looked too fun to not draw. I couldn’t pass up drawing it. Today I was talking with my friend Katie Rodgers about cutting out those things that affect you negatively, and focusing on activities that lift you and the people around you up. More and more that is something I’ve been trying to do. I’ve been trying to figure out how to spread the hope and joy I have to you all, and encourage you. Well, I hope you are having a great day! ☺️