Saturday, December 31, 2016

Watercolor Birds: New Year Card-inal

This is the last Watercolor Bird for 2016. May 2017 be filled with birds and birdsong for you all!

Friday, December 30, 2016

A Baggy Craft

So there were a few things I wanted to accomplish during this break. I did get to follow a very extensive Adobe Illustrator on-line course. It was so comprehensive, organized, and clear, it's amazing it's free. I was hoping to actually do my own original work in Ai as practice, but it's hard for me to get stuff like that done when my other half takes times off work and stays home. For the same reason, I also didn't get to do much of watercolor rodents. I know, excuses, excuses. But I can do things like this:

The bag on the right was given to me by my sister many years ago. I literally worn it completely out. The zipper in the back pocket broke, it has holes in it, and the strap is all frayed. So I made a new one, using materials left over from the Raju Hat I made in my first quarter. By the way, I actually designed the pattern on the fabric, through
The bag is not as nice as the original, but I think it's fairly sturdy. We'll see if it'll last as long as the first one did. And of course, all the buttons are now proudly displayed on the new bag's flap.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Monday, December 19, 2016

Second Quarter Recap

The second quarter came and went. It really was fast! It wasn't quite as hectic as the first one. I had time to sleep and eat - even go to the gym - this time. And I even had time to work on most of the #3yroldscribbles! but it did get busy toward the end. That's when you realize all the things you need to complete (which you couldn't work on before even if you wanted to) and they have to be perfect.
So in addition to my Smartphonography class, which I mentioned in a previous post, I had four other classes. Oh, and by the way, I bound my Look Book using a Japanese 4-hole binding method. SeaLemon's tutorial was very helpful:

For Typography two, besides the cupcake poster, we also had to represent Jorge Luis Borges' story The Library of Babel in two ways: on-the-grid (in the form of a book) and off-the-grid (whichever way we wanted. So here is my book:

 I decided to make it an accordion book, because it is a story about the universe as an endless but finite library.

For the off-the-grid project, I made a hexagonal Jack-in-the-box (hexagons are a big thing in the story):

I made the closure out of Das around paper fasteners

The whole story is printed on the bellows. It's hard to see, but there are some highlights on the sides of the inside of the box
To make this box I used GryphonArt's wonderful tutorials.

Next is Design Thinking, the class where we were required to come up with a problem related to commuting and to find a solution for it. This video, made by one of my teammates, Nakita, will explain everything:

Here's a photo of our products:

Kyle, Peggy, and Chewey
For Motion Media, we delivered two videos. One is a logo animation:

The other one will have to wait, because I need to figure out copyrights-related issues regarding the music I used for it, as well as I would like to work a bit more on the transitions for it.

Finally, for Ideas First, I will only show you my favorite poster (we had to make a bunch of them!). This one was supposed to advertise an imaginary youth camp under Trump administration (think Hitler Youth):

Well, now I'm on a break, and these are my goals for the next couple of weeks:
  1. Upload my cousin's children's book onto Amazon
  2. Improve my Adobe Illustrator skills
  3. Learn some Adobe After Effects so I can make better animations
  4. Finish up the fireplace at school (more about that later)
  5. Watercolor rodents

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Scribbles of a 3-Year Old

I know I've written about it before, but I've never actually posted any of my #3yroldscribbles. Not sure why. Maybe because the art is not entirely mine?
Anyway, I decided to post them all together (well, at least the ones I've completed, which are #65-92, except 70, which I only now realized that I missed!) in the form of a gif animation.

This is a very fun weekly challenge on Twitter. @3yroldscribble posts a scribble of her 3-year old son and illustrators and anyone who's so inclined, finish it up to create something. It is also very cool to see how different people see different things in the scribbles.

How To Draw and Paint an Angry Bird

As I mentioned before, I had to photograph 3 to 7 instructional photos as one of my assignments for a class called Smartphonography, where you learn how to take photos with your iPhone. Which, let me tell you, was quite a challenge, especially since I don't really own an iPhone, or any smartphone for that matter.

Anyway, here's  the final product:

And here are the steps:

1) Gather materials, including a reference photo

2) Draw shapes with a pencil

3) Use a pen to emphasize important areas

4) After testing your paint, start applying it in thin layers

5) Keep layering to add depth and color

6) Re-emphasize important areas with a pen

And I know this is not a photography blog, but here are some other photos I took for this class that I'm sort of proud of:

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Illustration Friday: Spiral

It's #NationalCupcakeDay apparently. So what's more appropriate for Illustration Friday's prompt than a nice frosting on a chocolate cupcake?

And if you wish to make a single cupcake for today, why not try this one?

Speaking of cupcakes, here's a poster I made for my Typography 2 class, made out of type:

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Watercolor Birds Revisited: Vermilion Flycatcher

Just in case you were wondering about the lack of posts in the past 2-3 months, it is not because I was on a desert island with no Wi-Fi. The end of the second quarter is upon us and we're all very busy preparing all of our deliverables for our classes. But I'm glad this quarter wasn't quite as intense as the last one, because I did get to do some non-school related illustration activities, mostly in the form of #3yroldscirbble mixed up together with #colour_collective. Perhaps during break I'll take the time to assemble the best of them into a video or something.

One of my deliverables is a series of smartphone photos explaining how to take on a particular task. Some chose to show how to cook a certain dish. I decided to show how to draw and paint a Vermilion Flycatcher. I won't show all the photos here, because I still need to edit them a little bit, but here is the final one:

I used pencil, pen, and watercolors, and then at the end went over the branch with some more pencil to give it a bit more depth.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Illustration Friday: Nest

For this week's topic, I figured I should look up what does a squirrel nest look like. Well, it turns out it varies. Some look like some bird nests, made of twigs, branches, and leaves. Others are padded holes in the tree. Again, just like some birds'. So the obvious conclusion would be that squirrels are a type of bird :)

In fact, I made up a little silly poem in this spirit:
A silly bird is the squirrel
Its song sounds just like a twirl
It builds nests in the trees
And enjoys mac 'n cheese
And it holds its tail in a curl

Friday, September 23, 2016

Color Collective: Orange

Earlier this week I worked on this #3yroldscribble, and it had orange in it, so when I found out the #colour_collective theme for this week is orange, I wanted to do another one of those confused hens, this time with colored pencils on a colored card stock. I don't think it worked as well for the hen, but at least it is clearer what's the orange thing underneath her.  

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Illustration Friday: Rain

Oh, gosh, it's been a while!
I decided to do a quick little corny penguin dancing in the rain for this week's topic, and to do it with pen and pencils, because I'm a little tired of working on the computer. Yep, that's the way it goes :)

By the way, this is totally not how I feel when it rains. I normally get really upset if I get wet, as if a bit of rain would cause me to dissolve into the puddles.

It's not that I don't like the rain. I love how it refreshes everything, brings out the smell of soil bacteria, and gives everything a nice, deep color. Plus, I also like rainbows.

But I prefer it doesn't rain when I'm out and about.

That's all I ask.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

The End of the First Quarter

Well, it's been wild ride so far. I started school just about 2 months ago, and I was 2 weeks late, because of my travels. So the first couple of weeks after I got back were crazy! Anyway, now that the quarter is over, and I've had my first critique, I finally have some time to share some of my projects.

Our first project for Introduction to Craft was to create a die-cut box:

 We had to make a few telescope boxes and bind a number of books. Here's my hard-cover book:
  For our final project we had to create a book in a box, whichever way we interpreted it. I decided to make a box whose lid serves as an additional box, and inside the lid there'd be an accordion book called "Don't Let the Snake Out of the Box". The book is a sort of rip-off of Mo Willems' books, such as "Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus."

And inside the box there'd be a snake:

It was a fun project to work on, but I had to make the snake and the book (20 pages of it) during the last 24 hours before critique. This is because I had all these other classes to prepare for, such as Introduction to Design, where we had to use cut paper to create a 24"x36" poster for an amusement park ride and two sets of icons that are based on an animal we were given and a civilization we chose. My animal was the Indian Rhinoceros and I chose the Inca civilization. We had to come up with a story and base the ride on that story. My story involves a little girl everyone makes fun of because she's so weak. She's told that Raju, a large and strong animal that lives on the top of the tallest tree in the forest, could help her.

We also had to come up with three related packaging items, bags and boxes, that have an additional use to that of carrying items.
Here's my bag/hat:

And each one of them had to have a tag with two sides that was made out of cut paper.

For our Typography 1 class we had to create a brewery concept with beer labels, coasters, a menu, and a booklet, given a typeface and a target audience. Mine was Bodoni and women in the 20s and 30s living in the quaint neighborhood of Virginia Highlands in Atlanta.

For semiotics, one of our projects was to create a poster for a Kubrick or Scorsese film:

I took the photo myself, with my point-and-shoot camera, but I got a bunch of help from my Photoshop 2 teacher with the setting, and lighting, and fake ice cubes.

So, yes, it's been crazy, and I'm enjoying it now that I can do whatever I want with my time (such as doodling #3yroldscribbles) and that I can catch up on sleep and clean the house from all the mess created by all this cut paper! We'll see how the 2nd quarter goes in a few weeks.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Illustration Friday: Gold

This is a European Goldfinch I painted back in June as part of my 50 watercolor birds series.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Travel Drawings

Last month (end of June to mid July) I went on a trip to Israel and Estonia. Immediately when I got back, I started school and had to catch up on the first two weeks I missed due to my trip. It was SO hard! The regular workload for this school, especially in the first quarter, I hear, is immense, so just imagine trying to complete 3 weeks worth of work in a single week. I will show some of the products of this work in a following post, but my point here is to explain why it's taken me so long to start writing this post.

I went to Israel only about 8 months following a previous visit there, which is very unusual. I normally visit every two years. But I had an extra special reason to go this time - my cousin's daughter's wedding. It was such a beautiful wedding! And I had a chance to see people I haven't seen in ages.

While on the trip I decided that I would try my hand at drawing from life. So my first drawings were at Ataturk Airport in Istanbul of people waiting for their flight to Israel.

When I got to my cousin's house, where I was staying while in Israel, I tried drawing Gina, my cousin's dog. 
 Gina is a very sweet barky dog
I also tried drawing her cat, Yulia, but she was less cooperative, preferring to nudge her head against my pencil-holding hand. So my drawings of her do not do her justice. She's really pretty.
While waiting on my sister and brother-in-law outside of their winery,
 I decided to draw this tree. The smudge at the top is a by-product of tightly attaching a pencil to the sketchbook

And these are some unaware(?) train passengers on my way to Tel Aviv. 
It did feel weird drawing people, as one must keep watching them, and worry if they'd get annoyed by you. I did not have any problem, however.

No, the weird insect was not one of the passengers 
On one of my days there I went to visit my friend in Jerusalem, and the bus was seriously late. I did not have a phone to call her and let her know that I'd be late, but a really nice person, Hofit, let me use her phone. I'm so thankful!
But not only that, when she heard I am an illustrator, she wanted me to draw her! So this is what she ended up looking, and you can see that my drawing did not do her justice. 
I do have a few excuses, though. For one, she was sitting right next to me, and I realized that one needs a bit of distance to get a good view of a drawing subject. Another excuse is that I really was not that trained in drawing people (as you can see from other entries in my blog, I tend to gravitate toward animals). But she was kind enough to like it, nonetheless. Thanks, Hofit!

After my short visit to Israel, I traveled to Estonia via Helsinki. In Estonia I had the pleasure of finally seeing a talented illustrator I met in the blogosphere. It was so nice to find out how alike we think about so many things, despite our age gap and coming from different parts of the world. Hanna was such a great host, taking me to all the interesting places in her beautiful city, Tallinn. This blog post is mostly about my drawings, but I feel like I must insert at least one photo of Tallinn.

Hanna was delighted when I mentioned I wanted to visit the zoo. We took our sketch books with us, of course.
Northern ground hornbill 
 American Black Bear
 A sleeping Polar Bear

We did a lot of other things, like visiting the botanical garden, the TV tower, a few museums on a rainy day, and this really neat outdoor museum where you can see how people lived in different parts of rural Estonia throughout the years. Not only can you see it, you can also taste it! They have a little inn there, where you can get authentic village dishes. It was so much fun!

I also went to Tartu and was terrified at the KGB cells museum:
A scary-looking Soviet guard. 
The scariness was enhanced with sound effects. 
 After 5 days in Estonia, I took a ferry back to Helsinki. I sketched a few people during the 2-hour ride, but I think this one (at the bottom) came out best. She reminds me of the Japanese animation characters, like from 3000 Leagues in Search of Mother (Halev, in Hebrew).

I had fun in Helsinki, as well. The first day was nice and sunny, but the second day was rainy, so I again spent it at a museum. I enjoyed the works of this Estonian guy:
A kid with a crow by Akseli Gallen-Kallela