Thursday, June 8, 2017

Friday, June 2, 2017

Project Neverland: Origin of Fairies

I thought a gilded floating frame felt right for this piece, don't you?

Logo designed by Anika Orrock:

Thanks to Nicola Hwang for this snapshot from the show:

A few sketches are also available:

About the show:
"A follow-up to CSG’s popular “Curiouser and Curiouser” show, which I featured here for Print, “Neverland” presents bold new visions by forty professional artists working in film, animation, illustration, and comics. Each produced their own, unique takes on J.M. Barrie’s original 1911 novel, using a variety of styles, techniques, and media, including watercolor, sculpture, and digital painting. And the exhibit will be up until next Sunday, June 11th..."

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Character Design Workshop

On March 15th, I'm guest-hosting at Character Design Workshop at RogueMark Studios! Spots fill up quickly so reserve your seat asap!

Breaking Loose in Character Design: Using Experimental Mediums to Bust Out of Clichés

  •  - 
  • RogueMark Studios, Berkeley, Ca

About the class:

Join us for a fun night of creating fun, silly and wild characters. Don’t know how to draw? Pssshhh….who cares?! Want to create dynamic looking characters but they keep looking flat, stereotypical and derivative? No worries! In this workshop we’ll experiment with some new mediums and techniques to approach character design in the warm and inviting space of RogueMark Studios! All ages and artistic levels welcome.
Supplies provided, but you are welcome to bring any additional art materials.

  • Understanding of what is character design?
  • Basic Shape Language and research techniques
  • Unique & creative approaches to energize your designs
  • Your own in-class creations!
  • Bring a sketchbook for note taking
  • Be prepared to have fun & get messy!
  • You do NOT need to know "how to draw"

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

CTNX Recap (a little overdue)

Here’s my big breakdown looking back on CTNX 2016 and forward to 2017.

When considering whether or not to attend/exhibit at CTNX 2017, ask yourself what’s important to you to get out of the event?
Networking? Education? Portfolio feedback? Exhibiting? Fun stuffs? Exposure? Hanging out with all the amazing folks in the animation industry? Snagging some juicy-one-of-a-kind-art pieces? Demos?

What would make CTNX better?
Less emails, more organization.

If you are participating in CTNX at all, you know one thing...there are a bajillion emails (about 200 in 2016 alone.)

It would be great to have an exhibitor packet with all deadlines, exhibitor specific schedules, requirements  and any additional information such as table sizes, electricity availability, and basic event expectations.

Sleeping Arrangements:
The Marriott is by far the most convenient place to stay during CTNx. It’s also pretty expensive and books up super early. I’ve stayed in the Marriott, the Courtyard, AirBnB and on friend’s couches. AirBnb is always a gamble. This year we gambled and lost.
There’s a new CTN Facebook Group that helps connect participants looking for housing and opens up quite a few options.

The CTN Village aka the “Tentopolis”:
  • Honestly, I found the tent a positive change from previous year’s layouts. As both exhibitor & attendee I enjoyed the spacious aisles, the spacing between exhibitors, the ambient music and atmospheric lighting on the trees. It had electricity, A/C, carpeted flooring and was easily navigable. Best of all, it was PACKED with artists who brought out all the stops. And every single one of them (us?) was accessible to chat with and support their work.

  • Sunday’s rainstorm. Tentopolis sprung several leaks, dripping/pouring all over people, art, lights and frying electronics like the sound system (similar to the devastation of 2012’s New Talent Tent, just on a much BIGGER scale). CTN staff closed off the tent to attendees, shut off the interior lights and we waited impatiently in the darkness for a few hours until it was time to pack up. Many exhibitors just packed up early and left. Breaking down and running to the car would have been considered a water sport. It was so wet! The parking lot was riddled with puddled, thunder and pourin rain.  
  • Entrance/Exit availabilities: In a poor attempt to direct traffic, the CTN volunteers created a panicked traffic jam.
  • Air Conditioning, although A/C was preferable over passing out from the infamous 2015 heat exhaustion, it made me appreciate the one scarf I packed in my luggage. After awhile, it was a sore topic for most bemoaning the coldness.

  • Having spent most of my time at my table, I didn’t get a chance to attend many of these. With that said, I would warn that if you are attending these, looking for a magic formula to be the most amazing cartoonist/artist/animator/designer ever, you won’t find it. Instead you’ll find out that every pro says the same thing: Hard Work on your Craft, Perseverance, Networking & a tad bit of luck.
  • If you are a huge fan of animation and want some knowledge bombs then absolutely attend all the panels/screenings that spark your interest. Hearing about Floyd Norman’s life, or how Tonko House designed Moom, or listening to Eric Goldberg talk about the beauty of 2D animation is an amazing opportunity that you can only get at CTNx.
  • Advice for the youngsters attending these panels/Q&A’s: Unless it’s a recruiter, do not ask how do I get hired at [insert studio name here]? Ask specific questions that pertain to the person on stage. Talking to a story artist? Ask about camera angles, or their experience working with a certain director, when they are assigned a scene, how do they start? What’s their process?

  • Same thing applies here too. If you are looking for a magic formula from artists, you won’t find it. Will they have some good advice? Absolutely! Will you walk away even more inspired than when you arrived? Yes!
  • How could you not be inspired to test out pastels after watching Nic Gregory paint a beautiful LA sunset? Or get inspired to sculpt after listening to Aaron Blaise discuss sculpting while actually sculpting right in front of your face?! It’s things like this that make CTNX unique and worth every hard earned penny.

Selling & Exhibiting:
  • Don’t expect to pay for a trip to Hawaii on your CTNX earnings.
  • Quite frankly, if you broke even for your trip to LA, pat yourself on the back.
  • In my personal experience, art books, original sketches, or unique items like enamel pins are in demand. Sometimes, you get lucky if an angel wants an original art piece.
  • Sales are also heavily dependent on table placement. There are great spots, and there are lonely spots. It’s probably the same case for many conventions, not just CTNX.
  • Prices vary, and change every year. In special cases, CTN has been known to sponsor artists' trips and exhibit tables.
  • The exhibit hall itself is a great chance to snag some unique art pieces from your favorite artists and get some face time with those creators.

  • Hands down CTNX is the most amazing opportunity to meet animation folks from high school students to 50 year veterans.
  • From the elevators to the hotel diner to exhibit hall, you can bump into amazingly cool people and bond over a love of all things animation related.
  • Each year this is one of the best parts - seeing and catching up with my amazing old & new friends that come together once a year at CTNX.

  • CTN updated their websites and they look pretty nice. You can check it out here:
  • Raise the Bar is a great opportunity to make your portfolio the best it can be by a specific date. At the actual recruiting events, this is an opportunity to make connections, and get some portfolio feedback.
  • I’ve heard a lot of (and experienced some) good & bad things about the CTNX recruiting events.
  • In my personal experience, just you put your best self and some elbow grease into your portfolio, submit it to all possible options, and someone will notice.
  • If you go into each possible meeting knowing exactly what you want to get out of it, then hopefully each meeting will be a successful one.
  • If you’re good & lucky enough get a meeting, here’s a few tips:
    • Check in with the volunteers early in the day to confirm your meeting times/names (I've learned this the hard way & try not to panic when things get switched around because they will, and sometimes it's for the best...sometimes not.)
    • Research the studios beforehand to be informed when you walk in
    • it’s best to actively listen to feedback, and ask solid questions regarding their work and how to improve your work
    • bring something to write notes with (not your phone!)
    • Always leave a business card or resume so they can contact you in the future.

Expect to pay for parking, no matter how you are affiliated with the event. They do not give out special Exhibitor Load in/out Parking passes, so you could easily only spend 1hr unloading supplies be charged $10.00+.

If you have any additional questions, just keep in mind I'm not a CTN employee & don't really read blog comments.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Great American Drawing Challenge

Take the drawing challenge by creating a drawing of inspiring Americans each day for an entire 100 days. You can use my list or create your own (there are many amazing Americans to choose from.)

Use the #GREATamericanchallenge

Personally, I’m focusing on Great American Women which seems appropriate to launch on the day of the Women’s March on DC. Creatively, I want to improve my drawing and typography skills in a positive way. 

Why? Besides the obvious love for drawing...We all could use a small reminder that America is kind of awesome. We’re a nation of boot strappers, dreamers, thinkers, explorers, doers, builders, lovers, inventors and fearless friends.  

Sharpen your pencils, fill your inkwells, and bust out those sketchbooks!

List of American Fearless Females:

  1. Abigail Adams
  2. Jane Addams
  3. Tania Aebi
  4. Madeleine Albright
  5. Louisa May Alcott
  6. All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
  7. Marian Anderson
  8. Susan B. Anthony
  9. Maya Angelou
  10. Lucille Ball
  11. Clara Barton
  12. Kathryn Bigelow
  13. Elizabeth Blackwell
  14. Mary Blair
  15. Amelia Bloomer
  16. Fanny Bullock Workman

  17. Nellie Bly
  18. Ruby Bridges
  19. Pearl S. Buck
  20. Mary Cassatt
  21. Willa Cather
  22. Shirley Chrisholm
  23. Florence Chadwick
  24. Julia Child
  25. Hillary Clinton
  26. Misty Copeland
  27. Ellen DeGeneres
  28. Emily Dickinson
  29. Dorothea Dix
  30. Amelia Earhart
  31. Mary Baker Eddy
  32. Ella Fitzgerald
  33. Zelda Fitzgerald
  34. Betty Friedan
  35. Margaret Fuller
  36. Althea Gibson
  37. Ruth Bader Ginsburg
  38. Anne Hutchinson
  39. LaDonna Harris
  40. Billie Holiday
  41. Grace Hopper
  42. Dolores Huerta
  43. Laura Ingalls Wilder
  44. Zora Neale Hurston
  45. Shirley Jackson
  46. Calamity Jane
  47. Anna Jarvis
  48. Jackie Joyner-Kersee
  49. Annie Jump Cannon
  50. Helen Keller
  51. Billie Jean King
  52. Michelle Kwan
  53. Dorothea Lange
  54. Annie Leibovitz
  55. Maya Lin
  56. Mary Lyon
  57. Madonna
  58. Margaret Mead:
  59. Marilyn Monroe
  60. Lucretia Mott
  61. Mary Musgrove
  62. Ellen Ochoa
  63. Annie Oakley
  64. Sandra Day O’Connor
  65. Georgia O'Keeffe
  66. Bonnie Elizabeth Parker
  67. Rosa Parks
  68. Alice Paul
  69. Ethel Payne
  70. Annie Smith Peck
  71. Frances Perkins
  72. Esther Peterson
  73. Pocahontas
  74. Jeannette Pickering Rankin
  75. Dr. Sally Ride
  76. Eleanor Roosevelt
  77. Rosie the Riveter
  78. Betsy Ross
  79. Helena Rubinstein
  80. Wilma Rudolph
  81. Sacagawea
  82. Margaret Sanger
  83. Muriel F. Siebert
  84. Bessie Smith
  85. Lillian Smith
  86. Gloria Steinem
  87. Martha Stewart
  88. Harriet Beecher Stowe
  89. Ida Tarbell
  90. Shirley Temple
  91. Soujourner Truth
  92. Harriet Tubman
  93. Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston
  94. Barbara Walters
  95. Martha Washington
  96. Phyllis Wheatley
  97. Frances Willard
  98. Oprah Winfrey
  99. Victoria Woodhull
  100. Babe Didrikson Zaharias