Friday, June 27, 2008

Take me galaxy...



When I finish up a big project, I like to take some time to do a sketchbook piece for my own pleasure. The title of this post is taken from the song "Midnight Surprise" by Lightspeed Champion, I definitely suggest looking him up. I like the way the phrase sounds. I started this piece by simply drawing in a stream of consciousness. I find this method of drawing to be very therapeutic. I'm not worried about concept or form, I just go with whatever pops into my mind. It's a way to sort through the random clutter of thoughts that swirl through my head at any given moment. I often feel overwhelmed with everything that I'm thinking, this is a way to clarify things.

I'm trying my best to keep this blog updated on a regular basis. I have this urge to constantly get my work out there.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Portland Funbook submission...



Yesterday was the deadline for submissions to Psilo Design's Portland Funbook 3. Of course I had waited until the day of to get my piece together. I blocked off the whole day to work on it, so I had enough time to produce a good piece of art. After roughing two concepts that I wasn't quite feeling, I got a hit of inspiration from the Micron Hero sticker I produced last year. My piece for this years Funbook is a continuation of the Demon Samurai legend. The Samurai is predominantly inspired by the legendary Miyamoto Musashi. Musashi is quite possibly one of the most famous Samurai of all time. Fittingly enough he was also an artist, known for his ink paintings and brushwork. His life is chronicled in the somewhat fictional book Musashi by Eiji Yoshikawa. It's probably one of my favorite books.

I see many parallels between graphic artists and the Samurai class. A freelance graphic artist is akin to a wandering Ronin, working for whoever will pay. Of course I would like to experience working for a studio of firm, which would be like serving a lord. We practice our skills in times of peace to be sharp in battle, which is when big project comes along. I nerd out on this stuff on a regular basis. I'll talk more about this at a later time, I just wanted to shed some light on the Micron Hero Samurai.

Friday, June 20, 2008

My fixie has been fixed...






I've been riding a fixed gear for, oh about a year now. I love the visceral experience of having your legs in constant motion, the bike really feels like more of an extension of your body than a vehicle. I don't really have a commute at the moment, with school being just down the way and any work I do usually taking place from home. I ride for fun, to get away from the confining glow of this computer screen.

I haven't gotten much riding in over the past couple of months, mainly do to the thesis project and its drain on my time. Combine this with a slipped lockring on my cog and I'm off the road for awhile. Last saturday I took my bike to the shop for a tuneup. The mechanic took the chain off and looked at the hub/lockring setup. Turns out the lockring had been screwed on crooked, messing up the threads. I put a new wheel on it with a much better hub and cog. Hopefully this will stand up better than the last one. I also replaced my dropdown handlebars with a low-rise moustache bar. I like a more upright ride I've found. Time to hit the Springwater Corridor, I'm looking forward to a summer of great riding.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Stapler...

Iron...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Caffeine...



Let's just say this is a little ode to caffeine. I know it's not the healthiest practice but I often start my days with a cup of coffee, waiting until lunch to eat. Usually after lunch I'll start on some more administrative type tasks, but before lunch it's draw time. When I'm in a creative groove I tend to ignore the bodies' needs, focusing solely on my work. In short I need to work on balancing creative time with more physically healthy activities.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The nature of process...



I've talked about my process before, but it is worth discussing from time to time. I'm talking more about process in general, what is it good for? Process is what you fall back on when you're crunched for time. It is the tried and true method of working that produces satisfactory results. A process can be a cage as well as a liberator. I often feel trapped within a certain style or method. I don't want to tread the same trail twice, so I feel frustrated when I find myself in a rut.

Planning is a crucial part of a client based project. You essentially need to cover your ass each step along the way. A strong conceptual backbone helps you defend your work and justify the decisions you made along the way to the final solution. But what about the work you produce in between projects? I feel that this personal work is what defines you as and artist, by you I mean anyone that makes a living in the creative field. It's the work that makes YOU happy that defines your creative identity. I am often most happy with work that exists solely in my sketchbook. This is the work that most reflects my raw creative energy. Of course a creative being needs to send work out in the world. It's this give and take, keeping and giving up that provides the tension necessary to sustain an artistic career. It's like a workout regimen, or yoga, tension and release.

Right now I'm in a period of release. These periods tend to be short lived, which is good because there are bills to pay.

-Jake

Friday, June 13, 2008

It was nice out today...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

A solid day in the studio...



I love having a full day in the studio to work on a single project. There's no frantic errands across town to find a certain type of paper, no crazy web server business to take care of. It's just me, my ideas and my tools. I can focus on the singular task at hand until it's completed. I have my coffee in front of me and a bland sheet of bristol. I am finishing my set of illustrations for the Emperor's New Clothes today. There are seven pieces in all. I will show them once the site goes up, it's going to be pretty cool.

Monday, June 2, 2008

About Me

My photo
I am a sketchbook addict. I live for the moment that the ink sits wet on the paper.