drawing

Mandala Madness \ Feeling the Vibes

I went through a what I would call a mandala madness phase not so long ago, every page of my sketch book was being attacked with a compass and ruler, a few pencil lines followed by few hours each with pens. As well as being very peaceful and meditative to create mandalas it also allows you to explore and improve your drafting skills and penmanship in the process. The best thing is that you never quite know how your mandala will turn out in the end. Despite laying down similar pencil foundations in the beginning, the outcomes seem to be dramatically different. 

So here's what one week of 'Mandala Madness' looks like:

UbikFarm Festival \ One night in Drawings

This last weekend I attended the much anticipated UbikFarm Festival, the little sister of the wicked festival UbikEklectik. The event was hosted by the guys at Farmunk in Vértesszőlős and I recon about 250 people in attendance. A petite festival that was overflowing with kindred spirits and feelings of free love and good vibes. I took A fresh sketchbook to see what would come of one Saturday night on the farm. Below are the results in order. I arrived at around 5pm on the Saturday and the last drawing was from 10am Sunday morning, when I wasn't drawing I was dancing and dipping (in the lake). Please bear in mind it was very, very dark during the majority of these drawings, and that I was drawing with speed to capture more of an idea of the festival rather than a realistic image. Some images I missed, like the piglets running behind the bar and the goats cruising with a rattle through the trees but I had a wicked night and am happy with the sketches.

Biggest Thanks to the Ubik guys, Taka Tuka crew and the wonderful folk of Farmunk for, as always, a great gathering of people combined with all sorts of fun. You really know how to do it. 

For More info check here \/

UbikEklektik  \  Taka Tuka  \  Farmunk

Style Test \ Nick Drake

I've found this new style I want to experiment further with. Using ink and brush I go over an initial sketch with a continuous and directionless line to build up tonal regions. (original photo by Keith Morris)

My initial idea was to actually build up the tones in greys, however when it came to use the ink I was so excited that I forgot to dilute it down, therefore had to continue with pure black. Still a satisfying outcome, however many improvements to be made. I want to use this technique to portray characters and people that have influenced/inspired my life to this point. 

Watch this space, more too come.

 

Apple Pencil 2.0 \ 8 ideas for the ultimate digital pencil.

I've had roughly a ten year history with apple now, I started using Mac when I was 16. Safe to say I was converted by mostly the user experience and quality of their products and in many ways their company ethos and morals. With the WWDC now past, although it was a good one and I would love to get my hands on the new 10 inch iPad, I was hoping to see more improvements to the Apple Pencil hardware. I know there were some software updates, which is cool, it has a few more little nifty features in notes and the lock screen, also the benefits of the new display with high refresh rate and less reflectivity. but just software updates did little to excite me. When the pencil first came out, I was excited, I predicted it 5 years prior to release, I knew apple would never make a stylus, but a pencil now thats a completely different story, the pencil for me is the most powerful tool in my arsenal. The Apple Pencil in its own right is a great pencil, the pressure is smooth at 1024 lvls, tilt and palm rejection, all is good. But in my opinion it could be soooo much better, so much more! The pencil is not just a drawing instrument, its a fully fledged tool, in the right hands it could conduct an orchestra.

Heres how,

1. user awareness, imagine if your pencil could distinguish whether it was you, your friend even your grandma who was using it. You could separate and view input into collaborated documents such as movies, drawings and notes (contextual)

2. multiple pencils on one device (video editing, collaboration drawing/painting, air drum sticks in garage band)

3. local notes, carry your notes with you in your pen.

4. A button... or two, yes the pencil has its pure slick design, but that doesn't mean it has no need for a button, I can. live without the eraser on top, but adding a custmisable button or two built into the apple pencil would make workflow a dream. It doesn't have to be a classic push button, I'm imagining more of a tap ribbon/zone setup with perhaps haptic feedback that wraps around the pencil, you could single tap to invoke an action or double tap to get a a quick menu, brush presets, colour palette etc, embedded Touch ID would be an ideal way to get into your cloud files on others hardware, 

5. Siri notes. Imagine if you could just speak memos to your pencil, you don't even need to get your iPad out but they would be available later.

6. measure more with sensors, what if you could use your pencil as a drumstick in garage band, to tap out a tempo or a rhythm. As a 3D brush, just imagine for a second if you could wave your pencil around and draw in thin air and the lines would appear in AR. With camera and sensor tracking the pencil could be orientated in space and hey presto, your painting in 3D! Or use your pencil with Apple TV and other apple devices. Open out the pencil platform, allow developers access..

7. Other colours! Product RED, jet black, c'moooon this ones a piece of cake and very disappointing not to see introduced at last weeks event.

8. Wireless charging, its not going to happen to the pencil until at least the 3rd iteration. Yet we all know, its a must and its coming, one day.

I realise that to maintain the current and essential form factor of the pencil, then some of these updates would involve huge tech advances in terms of battery and processing power/efficiency. Whilst on the subject of form, the pencil is comfortable to hold with great balance, however, and maybe its just my hands, the pen could be a hairs width thinner in my opinion.

All this said I cannot wait to see how the new iPad refreshes feel of the pencil, I'm most excited to see how the screen refresh rate smoothes the experience of drawing digitally. I don't see that happening other than in stores at the moment though unless I sell a painting or two! Does anybody know if apple does artist sponsorship? 

flash back \ 2 models, same place, 24 hours apart, 1 BIG difference

Once upon a time I was lucky enough to have two separate models pose within the space of 24 hours on the same location. In normal circumstances the drawings would have end up seemingly similar, however, as it turns out, the drawings couldn’t be any different!

1st Lena, where I made one or two pencil drawings taking roughly and hour each, came out looking quite realistic although I would say somewhat masculine, which in reality, is not necessarily the case.

2nd Tempest, the difference is quite apparent. What emerged from this 2 hour draw session was a psychedelic, 3 legged lady thing lying upside down on the sofa, head dangling freely whilst one of her 3 big toes caresses the rim of the bulbous lampshade. The penned piece is so far flung from the previous nights drawing you would be hard pushed to say that it was the same artist who authored them. Had I not just told you.

So whats the difference, why the dramatic and sudden change in style? 

Easily put, the difference was music. On the first occasion I was catching up with a friend as well as drawing a figure, there was little room for music. During the the day prior to next evenings session, I spent the day with a good friend Monsieur MacDonald who so happens to be a member of this so called 'Dream Rimmy" band from Perth. Pretty finger licking stuff that played on my mind until the night. Tempest came to pose and I asked her to sit/lie however she wanted on the couch and then to get comfortable. She took it upon her self to lay her legs over the back of the sofa. Whilst capturing the scene in ink like this, I do not worry so much for proportion or irregularities, I get my one line and I got for it worrying more about creating an atmosphere and sense of the moment rather than fixing mistakes. This leads to fair accurate but absurd looking characters, in this case the third leg arose as I thought to make a "Dream Rimmy" piece out of it, I asked Tempest to imagine herself trying to turn the light "on" with here big toe. The rest is history. 

What is interesting to note, is that the impression of the lamp is constant in both drawings, this was intentional, I didn't want to mess too much with the for of the lamp, I mean c'mon, its beautiful. Also, in the second drawing, I captured moments of the model walking around the couch eyeing up the perfect spot to place herself, you can see her on the right.

life drawing \ double model

Tonights life drawing session was a mixture of a single and a double model. 

Working with two models really does double the work load. I find this is due to the increased interactions between intertwining forms and limbs of the body. Despite the extra work the results are much more visually appealing and emotionally charged.

sketchbook \ two dudes

I love to draw from my mind especially when drawing portraits and characters. the results are usually unpredictable. 

Here’s two examples of recent sketches I made whilst playing with the proportions and features of the face. I am particularly happy with the texture of the stubble and the size of the glasses on the face of the first character. The second character is far more loosely drawn and the least successful of the two drawings. I remember in both I wanted to specifically have the mouths open, I got bored of drawing closed ones.

brain jones town massacre \ Budapest concert

Got to see one of my all time favourite bands for the second time last night, Brian Jones Town Massacre. Arriving 2 hours early to the show at A38 we were lucky enough to run into and have a chat with the man himself, Anton Newcombe, who's music has accompanied many of my drawing sessions in the past and inspired me to no end! He was exactly how I imagined him in person, the only thing that surprised me was that he was wielding an iPhone and showing me some of the quirky collages he'd been making on the tour, I didn't expect a musical legend to be so tech savvy and apparently in that way orientated. He also had the phone in his back pocket the whole concert, killed the all white linen, angelic vibe I think he was aiming for with an outline of a house brick dangling from his butt. Music was great though, an eclectic 

Anyhow, didn't stop me making a drawing! I left it the drawing in Anton's pedal case, haven't heard back from him yet... haha

drawing \ eye of Ra

Before I left Amsterdam for a period of travelling, I was gifted a necklace with an eye of Ra attached by somebody I love. The eye mainly represents protection and good health amongst other things. Definitely a good omen for my travels. Its a bizarre feeling you have a third eye that always watching out for you - comforting, once you get used to it.

I took it off one day to make this drawing. Completed with only a Bic biro.

Text reads:

RA, Creator of all. Maker of me, Shine your light. See my soul, it is Yours. Not part, But Whole. RA...

I struggle with writing so much. I always want these poetic moments in my life and then reading back it all sees so cheesy. 

I ended up getting very frustrated with myself one day and ripped this drawing up and put it in the bin... long, different story.

 

Stadspaleis & I \ mini documentary

A lovely bunch a film making students recently fell in love with the adorable cafe, Het Stadspaleis. They asked very politely if they would be able to make a documentary of the place, me and how it came to be.

Thankyou guys for the great documentary, it really captures the stads-vibe. A slightly embarrassing first film experience for me. I think it shows...