Long silence, new project!

Friday, April 27th, 2012 | Uncategorized

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted.  It’s in part because of a fun project that I’ve been working on.  It is only slightly related to theatre, so I wasn’t sure I should post it here, but what-the-heck!  Why not?

I agreed to illustrate a fun little book called “Hannah Horks a Hairball”.  And it’s going to be funded through Kickstarter (here’s the link if you would like to check it out).

I used a technique you may remember me talking about back in the rendering series that uses oil pastels, turpentine, and colored pencils.  I also used sharpie for some blocky outlines.  I have to say, this was one of the most fun projects I’ve done in awhile.  It was so freeing to not be focused on figures, to be big with my marks, and bold with my colors.

I didn’t take any process shots, so I’ll just describe it, if you want to try it out, it’s pretty easy.

First compose your frame.  I did quick, mini sketches (3″ x 4″ max) and roughly decided proportions, objects to include, etc.

One of the images for the book.

Then (because I don’t draw a lot of cats I cheated) I found images online that were the basic positioning of the cat body and used that to sketch full-size.

Then I attacked the page with color, laying in broad swatches, sometimes mixing two colors, laying similar colors next to each other so they would bleed together eventually.  It was kind of like. Going back to childhood and playing with finger paints!

Then I broke out my large and extra large paint brushes to move and blend through turpentine.  This part did not go so well.  It left me with a number of fuzzy edges, but I was able to fix that in the next step.  I actually repeated these two steps a couple times in a vain attempt to maintain some control over color placement.

After the entire page had color, I went back in with sharpie and colored pencil adding some detail and redefining lines that had been lost.  My old drawing professors probably are shaking their heads at this point.  They always told me that my desire to outline things was less interesting and less dynamic than letting two opposing colors create a virtual line.  But this isn’t a costume rendering, nor is it fine art.  So I feel I can do as I wish!

The book is about our cat’s cleanliness fetish, and Hairball issues.  It’s amusing and told in verse.

Please check out the campaign if it interests you at all.  Or pass the link on to others who you think might be interested.  Or ignore it all together.

Here ends my shameless self-promotion.

2 Comments to Long silence, new project!

Sue
May 4, 2012

Finding a cat’s image is not cheating, it’s research.

Rob OBrien
October 2, 2013

Hello,
I would like you and your readers to know about something new that is coming. I am publishing an e-magazine on the Apple Newsstand called the Costumer I-Mag. Ideally, we will cover both pro and hobbyist level articles. In our first issue we cover the UNLV digital Showgirl collection, costuming The Importance of Being Earnest, some interesting 3D printed accessories and more.
Until it is published I am posting some great articles on my face book page. Please go have a look and Like the page so you will know when the magazine has been published.
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Costumer-i-Mag/534517576627914
Thanks,
Rob

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