portpholio? (Is this a?…)

•May 21, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I’m not very happy with the idea of having to use my blog as my portfolio, but it feels more professional than a deviant art or a sheezy art website where you get filled with thousands of others people who may be much more or less talented all the while you are getting lost in a vast system of hundreds of other people.

The other option of course would be to build my own website, but that’s something that I don’t know how to do. further more I already had enough on my plate this term without learning a new piece of software and set of skills, so my web presence will be this blog… For the time being.

In the future I want to get a website online, where I can showcase my work as a kind of online portpholio where people can come and look at my work.



•May 21, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This really is the final furlong, where I take the work I’ve produced this year and present it in a way that is clear and concise, not particularly easy for a man as messy and disorganized as myself. Last time I organized and presented my work it took me a little over a week, so this time I have allocated a little over a week to finish organization and presentation. So far its going well everything in the appropriate folder and I’m just making .JPEGs of everything in an organized, annotated and in a more attractive fashion than simply read me’s next to the work.  Do you remember the first post where I had shown you what the presentation for my last part of my FMP looked like? If you cant be arsed to find a link or scroll down here’s one:


Its not much, but its clear and attractive (hmm that’s debatable!) and this is the kind of thing I am up to at the moment. I should be finished with a  few days to spare at this rate… Hopefully! I hate working right up to a deadline. wish me luck!

Oh and also im going to be using this blog as my web presence, and whilst I will be the first to admit that this is not good enougth for a digital artist, it is good enougth for an aspireing digital artist. And if I’ve got nothing immedeately pressing after the hand in I will be learning how to make my own website shortly after hand in.

The artists statement

•May 13, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I’ve never thought of myself as an “artist” I guess I am now tho, as I’ve studied art and its been my passion for a few years now (or at least making purdy pickatures has been.) But when faced with my artists statement I’m almost lost. Actually this didn’t start with my statement, it started with my CV.

For this fmp I’ve been asked to produce an up to date creative CV, this is fine and fair enough, but I’m 20 and I’ve never had a job in the creative industry before… And no one expects me to have! I came straight from high school into college and then into games art and design in uni. As a result I have no clue as to how to write a creative CV, or at least I didn’t have until recently.

I went to a presentation, (I don’t recall the woman’s name, there were a few people who had presentations that night.) and after her presentation she handed out a successful art duo’s creative CV, and the other chap who was there that night presenting had shown us his creative CV.

It was nothing like I had written or conceived before, both the CV’s used relaxed and informal language. both of them were visualy clever rather than information strong, having said that they did communicate effectively who the person was and what they have done and what they currently do, and all the other tosh you might expect from a CV.

After these presentations I left with a fair idea of how to go about writing a creative CV. I should be honest, informative, clear, organized and above all creative! and i had a few ideas of what to write and how to write it…

But that’s just it! I knew how to WRITE a CV, not how to illustrate and design the images for it, or how to make it stand out intellectually and creatively. You know what I mean?

After all I know what my work is like… but how do I sum up visually what I am as an artist? what am I about in terms of color and line and graphics?

To help me answer these questions I decided to write my artists statement, you know to get my head around what I am and where I’ve come from and what inspires me. So far, no appifiny! it’ll probably come to me tonight when I’m laying in bed and I’ll have to rush to the computer and scribble out a few pages of nonsense and make it all work in the morning!

Until then I’m going to write what I am going to say in my CV in a bland word file so that my thoughs are organised, and then “coppypasta” it all onto whatever images I feel apropreately go with what I want to say about myself. watch this space! I’ll have something done that looks like a cool creative CV and an artists statement to boot!

Zombie nation

•May 12, 2009 • 3 Comments

The zombies, I produced a few sketches of a zombie horde and what i thought was going to be a great zombie effect, looked rubbish and took forever. I was drawing each individual zombie,  and even in silhouettes, it was a pain. I grabbed onto the idea of using template zombies. I mean how many individuals does it take to make up a convincing zombie horde?

And so I investigated, how FEW zombies could I use (inverting them and so forth, giving them slightly different faces etc) to build a convincing zombie horde?

zombie dawn!

zombie dawn!

The answer… Two… Sort of! The front rank remains utterly unconvincing, you can easily tell where I have copied zombies to make more of them, and you can tell where I have accidentally repeated a zombie in close proximity to another one. But the shadows confuse the eye, making it seem like there are many more zombies than there actually are. I wasn’t happy with just this as an effect, but it was a start!

Next I tried with more zombies, but painting more than four would be a pain. So I drafted friends and family to make zombies out of!

thanks Mell!

thanks Mel!

... and Dad!

... and Dad!

Dad didn’t get the idea that he was going to be a silhouette, but whatever it was fun. I wasn’t going to tell them at the time that pulling faces wouldn’t help or hinder the final piece now was I? And the pegs on his ears?… Well that was his idea, I don’t know what he was trying to do. Congratulations Dad, you’re on the internet hopefully being looked at by my tutors, I hope you are happy now.

…Anyway using these chap’s and chappettes for reference (and occasionally to save time just tracing them for an accurate and fast zombie) I made a few silhouettes, and placed them against my flaming backdrop.

shadow test for zombies

shadow test for zombies

This is one row of the zombies being tested with the idea of a flickering shadow. The shadow was taken form each row of zombies, that was copied and inverted before being deformed to look like it was on the floor.

So yeah thats how the zombies came about. I think I’m nearly up to speed with what I’ve been up to this term, aside from polising off a few of the peices youve seen on these few posts I’ve been writing and designing my CV, and my artists statement… But I’ll post about them tomorow.

“Now where was I” redux!

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

today I started a post that needed to be put on hold whilst I got on with work, and here is the rest of that post.

OK so I had the overall image of what I wanted this final piece to look like, it was going to be split down the middle scene with the “good ending” (there is no good ending to the tragic tale of Jackuan Grey, only different levels of how bad it gets!) and images from the “bad ending” on the other. i worked this for a little while trying to get the trees to look more like trees and the zombies to look more like zombies etc…

This is an example of what it looked like a little later into production:

note that i've still left the sketch in

note that i've still left the sketch in

I went on a little further (putting in zombies and the lake and the foreground) before I realize this image even if I finished it wouldn’t look all that great. So I went for a similar one where its all the bad side…

And that wound up looking like this:



Simple eh? Actually it really wasnt, I had all sorts of problems making the zombies look really good, but I’ll post about that tomorow.

Now where was I?…

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Ahh yes! At the end of this project I wanted something cool to look at! So I began scratching my head for what I could do with young Jackuan to help illustrate his story. I was after some highly polished promotional art like piece for the end of term, you know something that wouldn’t look out of place next to my hugely talented peers. So I wanted to try and think big, And that is  not something that I’m used to! My thoughts turned to a large landscape Star wars like movie poster of an image, with a selection of the things that Jackuan was going to experience going on all round him. and so began my idea of a piece that’s named “the killing moon” on my hard drive (and yes I was listening to echo and the bunnymen at the time) here’s the sketch for it!…

final peice doodle-02 haha! Oh man this looks worse than I remember! Oh well all ideas start somewhere. And this idea did evolve, oh man did it!

I decided that to fit in everything that I wanted to show it should be landscape, although in hindsight it would work as portrait with the images of the stuff happening all around him like you’d get in the actual Star wars poster. Anyway on his left would be all fire and brimstone houses on fire zombies etc all hell breaking loose, and on his left was going to be an illustration of the good ending the sky was clear the moon was full the water by the lake still and gloriously shiny reflecting all the stars and lights, and in the foreground of this Jackuan crouching over the fallen figure of his love interest in the narrative.

So with this in mind I set to work, working out how I was going to do each part as I went along.

how it was all looking at the start

how it was all looking at the start

You know what I’m going to have to come back to this post hold on… I sware I’ll finish the story of how I put this all together and then pulled it all apart to make a wholy different image altogether. I’m just running a little behind on what Ive got to do right now! And this post is eating into valuable work time.

Ahh yes… Eyes!

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

The next hurdle I encountered was when I began drawing eyes on Jackuan. I couldn’t make them fit in with the image and nor could I make the eyeball look realistic or look like it was not stuck on afterward! So I began looking at various techniques for making eyes and had a look at some CG tutorial eyes:


That’s not a bad one if you are looking for the same thing that i was, making a good looking eye.

Frankly I’m struggling with eyes but here are my attempts anyway.

my first attempt

my first attempt

Now from a distance this doesn’t look too bad. I mean the kinda of distances I would be using if this was on a characters face. However the way that the skin around the eye interacts with the eyeball its self is where it goes wrong… It just looks stuck on the face… So I began to play with the skin tone around the eye socket…

skin around the eye only

skin around the eye only

Again i’m not happy with this (I never am happy with my work.) But at this point I called it a day and thought I would get on with working out just what the hell my final piece was going to be.

There was one last attempt at making the eye look good, and that not only worked but looked great. However the file was corrupted so I’ll have to rebuild it and put it on here if I have the time. So stay tuned for an eyeball that actualy looks like one!