Here is my very first speed-drawing video!
Yes, there is a story to the above cartoon. And I will now tell you that story.
It begins when a friend of mine asks me to draw his logo. He wanted a lizard in a hammock strung up between two palm trees. There are times in my life where I have no creativity. I tried, but everything I did seemed wrong. Needless to say, I didn’t do the drawing.
Fast forward about eight years, I am moving to a new place, and as things get seen that haven’t been seen in quite awhile, I discover that I had the above drawing in my arsenal for years before my friend asked me to draw the lizard. If only I had remembered this drawing, I could have replaced the Gomer in the hammock with a lizard. Simple.
The moral of the story? Sometimes, I wish I had a smarter brain.
I mean, why can’t we harness the power of lightning? Or hurricanes and tornadoes? Just imagine the power generated by these natural phenomena. Let me emphasize NATURAL. Stuff that is going to happen anyways! Hey…we are already messing with solar, wind, and water power. This would just be one level up from that. If we can figure this out, eventually, we will also figure out how to make flying cars, probably.
I did a little more work on the AJ project. At first, I was just trying out different background colors. I was going to send this to Al and Gloria and let them decide which color they preferred. When I put them all together it looked quite charming. It reminded me of something Andy Warhol would have tried. I’ve decided to leave it as is. Art just happens, sometimes!
This is for my big brother, Albert, as he is recovering from a kidney transplant operation. This is a caricature of his dog, A.J. So listen to A.J. and get well soon!
This art was a simple pencil sketch of A.J.’s face and a very vague, unfinished outline of his body. I then scanned it into Photoshop and painted it.
This animation project has been a great adventure for me. It was just a straight forward doing and learning. I liken it to walking through a maze blindfolded. Of course, because I have a little experience with animation, perhaps I peeked here or there.
I explored three frontiers in the making of this video; Adobe Animate, placing sound in my animation, and a Huion digital drawing tablet. Animate is an animation program and I am like a kid in a candy store in there! Oh, the wonders…the wonders I have seen! At first, I was a bit bedazzled and confused, but soon, I was humming right along. My next challenge was to place sound in my animation. I had never done that before, but because of my enthusiasm for the task at hand, and the ease of working in Animate, I made short work of it. And to wrap things up, my brand new digital drawing tablet was instrumental in the creation of the video. With this technology, I can draw in the computer! That eliminates three steps: sketching on paper, inking, scanning. An incredible time saver.
I will begin at the beginning, or so I think. That is, what I believe to be the beginning. Even though, if you really, really contemplate infinity…a beginning is rather nonsensical. An ending, for that matter, never happens. Happenings happen, but there is no actual beginning or ending. What was I talking about?
As I was meditating, I was struggling with a noisy and anxious mind. I was receiving image after nauseating image of all of the bad that is happening in our world. I started thinking, “Good Lord! Meditation is supposed to lead to relaxation, not to more and more tension and strife!”
After those thoughts transpired, I was able to successfully hush my brain and let my soul do the “thinking”. Eventually, I reached the Now. No past…no future. Now, man, now! Nothing but peace, harmony, rainbows and all of that other beautiful crap. And then I saw an angel floating by in my field of vision. It was floating on a cloud, and it had the most goofy and happy look on its face. Like the innocent expression of children or puppies. That face embodied all of the joy, wonder, and humor in this entire world, galaxy, and perhaps even the universe! I could not help but to laugh out loud! I made a mental note to myself to draw what I had just seen. “Hangin’ Around” is what I call the drawing above. I call it that because as I was drawing it, a song by the Edgar Winter Group called “Hangin’ Around” was playing. I believe it was the first time I had ever heard that song, but I thought it was the perfect name for my piece of art. Thank you, Edgar Winter and Group.
I call this a sketchless drawing. I did not sketch it in pencil first, and then ink it as I would normally do. I picked up a pen and went to town. This method allows me to grab the essence of the idea, unfettered and unfiltered.
I reached the “Now” and brought this back. I brought it back so that I could share a small piece of the peace I found in inner space. A small, imperfect representation of what I saw and felt in the hopes that I could transfer some joy and laughter and hope to others. I hope that I was successful. It makes me happy to make others happy in any way I can. Happiness is more contagious than the corona virus! Catch it! (Happiness, not the corona virus, silly.)
PS……….Let’s play a little game. Now, keep in mind, this game is only for the advanced Oddbox Comics reader. I strongly advise all novices to stay away. I don’t want you to get hurt.
Question: [Who does that angel in the above drawing look like?]
Announcing my new art studio!
I got a gig on Fiverr. If you haven’t heard of it yet, Fiverr is a site where you can go to find freelancers of all kinds. Freelance writers, bloggers, videographers, photographers, artists, etc. On the other hand, you could also think of it as a site where you can offer all kinds of freelance work, like writing, blogging, videography, photography, and art, etc.
I think of it as an art studio because that is where my freelance cartooning business will be conducted. In a way, Fiverr is basically acting as my agent. They promote me and handle all of the businessy stuff that I would rather not have to mess with. And there are no upfront charges! I don’t owe them one red cent until I sell. That is when they get their pound of flesh. They get 20% of everything I make. Even though I think Fiverr is making a killing (they have thousands upon thousands of freelancers), I think that is a fair price for what they do. My only investment, so far, has been time.
Here is the downside…remember when I mentioned how many freelancers are using Fiverr? I said, “thousands and thousands”, and that is not an exaggeration. 13,404 to be exact. 13,404 other cartoonists in the Cartoons and Comics section. Talk about competition! Perhaps my style will just naturally stand out in a crowd. Either that, or I could come up with a gimmick to grab attention!
Wait! I got an idea! I am not even asking you to order anything (unless, of course, you wanted to, that would be okay, because maybe you need a new Facebook avatar or something), all I ask is that you visit my studio. How many clicks a certain gig gets is a determining factor in its position in the hierarchy. I am asking for your help and I thank you in advance. Please click on the image below to visit my Fiverr Gig!
P.S……My friend Joy has informed me that when she clicks on the image, it asks her to “get account”, and well, frankly, I think that kinda sucks. I was hoping that it would take you directly to my profile. When I click it, that is what happens (maybe because I do have an account). At any rate, I think the click actually counts so keep on clicking, please! And, you know what? Maybe you should get an account. What does it cost you? A couple of minutes? You can get just about anybody to do just about anything you need! Check it out!
This resulted from loosening up. If I haven’t a clue as to what I am doing, I doodle mindlessly in the hopes of sparking an idea. This is what appeared on the paper at this particular time. Weird, huh?
The progression of color of the Flint River Collection design.
- I made a copy of the b+w version and then painted it with watercolor.
- Then, I cleaned it up a bit. Observe the rat’s tail and his tiny little rat-hands.
- Finally, after some further Photoshop color manipulation, the finished piece.
P.S……….I have closed my Patreon. I would like to thank everybody for your contributions. You are awesome! Double thanks to my best buddy, Dave Pray!