Bad Babysitters: Progress in pictures. .

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My Goblins (Bad Babysitters) painting, took me about 5 weeks.  Which is amazing for me, because that’s much faster than normal.  But when you look at it closer- there were a lot of very long days in there.  So it’s also the most intense push I’ve ever done to get a painting finished.

Either way I’m pretty darn happy with these creepy cute fellows.

These photos were all taken with my phone as I was working on this.  So forgive the quality.  We’ll get a better one of the final shot soon.

Goblin final - bad pick wartermarked

Stretch Goals and a nude man…

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I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions.  Last one I made, over a decade ago, was that I would never make another one.  And I’ve stuck to it.   But I saw someone talking about making their resolutions to be about DOING more or BEING more, instead of giving up things and I figured I could get behind that kind of idea.

I decided to look towards what I call “Stretch Goals”.  In my mind, these are the types of things where I don’t necessarily think my skill level is ready for it, but that I want to STRETCH and reach to see how far I can get.

I was encouraged by an artist to check out a particular Life Drawing class.  Now I’m not a prude, but sitting in a room where everyone is staring at a naked person seemed a little strange to me. But I promised myself as soon as I was free on one of the scheduled nights, I’d go.   That free night was this week…and just my luck, it was the first male model of the year.

I like guys, especially attractive guys, but to sit and look at a stranger in the nude for three hours was completely outside of my comfort zone.  Add in it’s the first time I’m attempting to draw from a live model AND pretty much the first time I’m attempting to draw a person as all – and I couldn’t have been much more uncomfortable.

It’s important to note here, that I’ve met the person running the event / gallery a few times before and he really did a WONDERFUL job of making sure I was comfortable or had what I needed.  So it’s not on them at all.. just my own hang-ups.  But I managed.

The first 10 poses were VERY fast, and after the first sketch was little more than a clump of shapes and lines from me..I figured out I’d focus on trying to get something, but not the whole person.  Face and hair, line of the shoulder to the back, the legs…etc.  And that was more manageable.  Then the poses got progressively longer and I found I was working faster and getting most of the pose.  Until finally the last 2 poses were 25mins each and I figured out I would do better to focus on the shapes the shadows on him were making and letting that, along with leaving the highlights undone, created the person on my paper.

No, I don’t feel totally comfortable sharing what I drew.  But it was better than I expected..and that’s part of the point.  I think I might even go back in a few weeks and try it again.

Have you done anything towards your goals for the year?  Do you have a stretch goal?  I’d love to hear about it.

Distracted by Goblins

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I started the year with a few good plans.  Painting projects I was ready to start working on and hopefully finishing this year.  I mentioned one (Barry the Bat) already.  But then I took a friend out for her birthday.

Started with a great dinner of food she’d never had before (Puerto Rican – I can recommend a great place in North OC).  Then we brought her to see some friends at their gallery for a night all about celebrating David Bowie.

Watching The Labyrinth and then watching some amazing artists (the birthday girl included) paint from the inspiration of the night was great.   I found myself quite inspired as well.  But in truth I was not feeling up to joining them.  I’m a pretty slow painter still and that’s after I’ve thought about the piece for a while.

So, I thought about what I would have wanted to paint (if I hadn’t chickened out) over the next day.  And that night I sat down and challenged myself to just do a study as fast as I could.  I had hoped to get something in about 2 hours.  But in just under 1 hour I had this: goblin studyI think he’s so ugly he’s cute.  He’s inspired by one of the goblins in The Labyrinth and I just LOVED his expression.  “Listen, she’s going to say the words.”  Besides he’s a Jim Henson’s Muppet, based on Brian Froud’s design, from a movie with David Bowie and Escher-esque scenes . . these are a few of my favorite things!

I’m pretty proud of the bug-eyed little guy.  And so, I’ve put other projects mostly on hold while I work on a more detailed painting of him and one of his big goblin buddies.  I just can’t get them out of my head until I’m done.