I was lucky enough to participate in the Worldwide Sketchcrawl (like a pubcrawl, but with more more hand/eye coordination) this Saturday. The NYC group met in front of the Chelsea Wine Vault at the Chelsea Market at 11 a.m. and, minus a break for lunch at 3 p.m., the last of us drew until 6:30 p.m. We spent the early afternoon on the High Line, then did post-lunch sketching at Chelsea Market (there was string quartet playing and great people watching), and ended the day with a walk to Times Square—stopping on the way to sketch a taco truck on 29th Street.
You can see other New Yorkers’ sketches and photos over at the Sketchcrawl boards. My drawings and links to fellow Sketchcrawlers’ blogs are after the jump…
I don’t want your strange cake from Brooklyn! November 14, 2009
YES! Finishing Week 2 all caught up!
The title of this post is a quote from Gabourey Sidibe and is taken from the AV Club’s interview with Lee Daniels and Gabby. I haven’t seen Precious (the last movie I saw in a theater was Up—now out on DVD!), but I keep coming across Gabby’s interviews and enjoying the hell out of them. Monique is in Precious as well, and I got the reference for her sketch from the same New York Times Magazine article, but she came out looking a little Fembot-ish. Doesn’t do the Robert Maxwell photo justice at all. I drew Jessica Valenti of Feministing from a higher-res picture and larger on the page, which is probably the way to go.
In fact, I have a big ol’ 11 in. × 14 in. pad I should probably have the gonads to use now that we’re halfway through DrawMo!
Goldilocks and the 23rd District November 13, 2009
So the weird 2009 election in Upstate New York’s 23rd District gets weirder. Meanwhile, I’m playing catch-up for three negligent days. So, here’s sketches for Days 9, 10 & 11. Pretty obvious I drew them in one sitting and got more involved/attentive as I drew from right to left. Hoffman, in the middle, was the most fun to draw and is the most Tea Party-tastic of the bunch. Here’s a link to the AP photo from the Washington Post I used as a reference.
I also jammed out to this song on repeat while sketching tonight:
The Arrival of Interdependence Day November 8, 2009
November 8, 2009 is not only Day 8 of DrawMo (and NaNoWriMo), but for enthusiasts of David Foster Wallace’s novel Infinite Jest it’s also Interdependence Day. I found an interesting picture of sludge digesters on Deer Island that handle waste from Boston (where Infinite Jest is set) in the book Infrastructure by Brian Hayes. The barely done interloper and offspring behind the digesters in my sketch are there due to my reading The Arrival by Shaun Tan today and having my mind blow by how unbelievably amazing it was.
Grab hands and hold on for Week 2 of DrawMo. We’re all in this together.
“Hunchfront” is one of the more hilarious possible side effects from Prescott Pharmaceuticals (written by Peter Gwinn). My other two favorites are “Spontaneous Gypsy Scarf” and “Involuntary Narnia Adventures.”
After seeing the Colbert Report writers at the Paley Center (and getting autographs from two very gracious and funny writers) I killed some time at the Rockefeller Center Skating rink sketching Prometheus before heading over to the Town Hall Theater to see Patton Oswalt’s show with mom. As I was leaving Rockefeller Center, I realized the sketch might’ve been more interesting from a different angle rather than dead on, so another potential do-over (at least before it gets too cold and tourist-y out there).
(My apologies for the crazy lighting in the photos. The scanner should be set up by tomorrow!)
An Indescribable Hat November 5, 2009
I borrowed Day 5′s subject from the Boston Globe’s Big Picture post on Pushkar Mela because it reminded me of a favorite illustrated book: James Thurber’s The 13 Clocks, illustrated by Marc Simont. A character that aids the hero in the fairy tale is called The Golux and is described as wearing “an indescribable hat, his eyes were wide and astonished, as if everything were happening for the first time, and he had a dark, describable beard.”
The shading’s pretty disappointing as I was quite tired when I drew it (excuses!) but it gives me something to focus on tomorrow.
PS: Mostly tired from geeking out over this. That is all.
… at the John Hodgman reading.
From Mark Summers’ illustration of Gulliver’s travels at the Union Square Barnes and Noble (barely visible in the background here). In the original, Gulliver is just waking up and lifting his hand—it does not look like the little breeches guy is about to get a King Kong grip like is so clearly going to happen in my sketch (no room for brains in my breeches guy’s tiny head. Sad.).
Drawing from an illustration was weird at first but the subject matter made me smile, which seems to be the running theme of my DrawMo subjects so far.
Alcohol-soaked celebration November 3, 2009
We’re all obsessed and totally in love with the Boston Globe’s Big Picture photoblog (“News stories in photographs”), yes? Good.
Day 3′s subject comes from BP’s Days of the Dead post, specifically #16. When you look at #16, you’ll understand why I had to draw it, but it was only when I went to post my sketch attempt that I read the caption and realized why dude looked that way:
After an alcohol-soaked celebration lasting three days, villagers race horses to commemorate the Catholic feast of All Saints, for which the town is named.
I kind of want to convert to Catholicism after reading that, even though I can’t drink for shit. Don’t you feel better knowing someone on Earth was that psyched to be alive two days ago? I do.
Three things that didn’t work out:
- I had fun with the hair but wasn’t looking hard enough and ended up making it cartoon-y instead of drawing the actually pretty obvious (once I tilted my monitor up, doh!) structure of The Awesome Mohawk.
- I usually love drawing ears—and this guy had a great one—but I pretty obviously phoned this one in. Too excited about the damn hair.
- Hat in no way looks like a hat.
Three things that did:
- I used something other than a mechanical pencil and the drawing came out much less timorous as a result. In fact, maybe too much in the other direction (All glory to Prismacolor Black: you are so thick and smooth and black and NON-ERASABLE OH SNAP). Remembered how to get comfortable switching between different pencil hardnesses (5H, H, 2B and 5B for like 2 seconds, plus aforementioned Prismacolor Black).
- Placement on page is decent, only a little tight on top.
- I like how the little patterns on the jacket came out, mostly. They were fun to do, and come across as pattern-y even without doing every single shape. Yay.
Also, I will probably be dead before I know how to even try to draw fleece/sheepskin and make it look like it actually does in real life, or with even just a hint of being soft. Ugh.
I’m not sure if I’ll be in the mood to try a second attempt at the same subject tomorrow, but the possibility is there. In the back of my mind a voice says, “I could get up early and finish my sketch in the morning!” but recent history has proven that voice a dirty, dirty liar. And yet I want to go to the John Hodgman reading tomorrow with a clean conscience… A conundrum! One for Day 4 (which starts in 30 minutes. Damn you Twitter and elections).
*Sorry about the “three things that didn’t work, three that did” part. I was having art school critique flashbacks while drawing tonight.
For Day 1 of DrawMo I managed a little cartoon sketch of an amazingly funny guy I’m a fan of named Jon Stewart. For Day 2 I drew another Jon—but this one has amazing taste in Halloween costumes.
I found today’s Jon via Lee Unkrich’s (@leeunkrich: Pixar director) twitter feed when he started linking to Pixar-inspired Halloween costumes. They were all really cute, but Jon’s was my favorite. His folks did a great job with the costume [check out the all their Up costume photos at their blog: Chez PLJ! And marvel at all of Jon's other great costumes too!] and he really wears it well.
I’m going to try to finish this sketch tomorrow as well as start an all new sketch for Day 3; I had a lot of fun working on Jon’s smile tonight.