Thursday, December 20, 2012

A view of the Studio

The Studio has suffered neglect, but we continue to wage the war, press on and chase the darkness and all that shit. Artwork to follow.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A drawing from October 18th, 2012.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Scotty portraits

Here is a new photograph from this week of Scotty, I think this will be for his promo stuff.

I was pretty happy with the way this turned out, I had this image of Scotty under broken glass and that seemed to come together pretty well.

I also wanted to do some water colour paintings:

But the first one came out like I do not know what and there was no time for a third. This doesn't look too much like him but there is a feel here that I am happy with-

I was thinking a bit about the later work of the artist Francesco Clemente who is a damn genius and his portraits are stunning.

Just look at this one of Keith Haring, obviously done in the 80s

Clemente was part of the 80s Village scene, the breadth of his work is inspiring.

Friday, March 23, 2012

NOW magazine

It seems a bit odd, but here is me in a photo shoot.

Well, that is me in the background anyways. For Fashion week, Now Magazine, created a shoot with the idea of the "artist and muse"....Look, I was just drawing not making up the ideas.

You can see the story on Now Magazine's website

The fashion influences the way you draw I guess, these earrings and tight hairline made me think of a flapper.

It did give me a great chance to draw the model, Queenette.

I feel like there is always a great tension when drawing a person, focusing on their muscle and structure and, at the same time, giving attention to the clothes as well.

It was also really interesting for me, someone who is not in the fashion world to have a bit of an outsider perspective on the clothing styles.

Give me a break, she was 6 foot 1 and wearing heels!

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Drawing of Omar in preparation for NOW magazine

Here is a sketch of local coffee shop guy, Omar, a Montreal native who posed for me before my sketching gig with Now Magazine.

Details on that to follow.

Monday, March 05, 2012

drawings of Scotty

This is a pastel drawing I did using old Grumbacher pastels on a piece of thick carton board like I'm some contemporary of Toulouse-Lautrec dans la Belle Epoque! I love looking at that style of drawing- the strength in the lines.

Scotty was sitting in the studio for a haircut for some video thingy and it gave me a chance to do some drawing, like this portrait of him and a double portrait of Duncan cutting his hair, I took the theme further and gave Scotty some dog tags like he was a GI being sent to Viet Nam.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Simple Drawing with the iPad

I have not yet really got a handle on drawing with the iPad 2, or at least, have not really looked at all the options with the program is ok, but a little too non intuitive. Like the iPhone, one button is cool but not as practical as having a few more buttons so that you don't have to constantly go into your menus....what is this, Windows?

Anyways, was drawing these two women and this little kid while they were having a coffee and everyone was debating the merits and pitfalls of Champix.

By the way, the colours looked nothing like this on tablet, still trying to figure out what happened.

Click here if you would like to see a few of David Hockney's paintings using the iPad and the Brushes application. But honestly, his 'conventional' paintings and water colours are much better.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Sketchbook Images, 2006-2011

This old piece of luggage, I cannot remember where I got it from, I store a whack of old sketchbooks in it, its handy. With the quality and condition of the studio, I should use a pelican case.

Here is a stack of aforementioned sketchbooks, notebooks and random junk around, that one would expect if you've been to my studio.

So, from all this, I have put a whack of scans online on the blog, click each year and you will see the sketches on the day they were sketched.







Sunday, January 29, 2012

New York 2012

Yes, it was freezing. Yes, there were line ups galore in front of every major art gallery or Museum but, New York is still a great time.

My friend Alan and I started with a coffee.

Yup, even in the sweaty subway people were all bundled up. I drew this sketch while overhearing some heinous teens talking. I think if you grew up in NYC you would be a sleazier more foul version of yourself....just a thought.

At the Guggenheim- the Maurizo Cattelan retrospective, ALL.

You can see the herds of people in line that you are trying to avoid at all costs, it was an amazing thing to take in but at the end of it all, I am no longer sure what I think of the artist- it was a lot of one liners, winks and leg pulling. Not much gravitas when you have a minature Hitler floating by a cord, sizzle si!, but any substantial steak....????

I caught the JFK piece about a year and a half ago at the New Museum in NYC, you went around a corner, its dark, and boom, a dead man in a coffin- and it is JFK! This was not just all denouement seeing it again, it also made you see how things looked silly and just too pop-shebang-fizz (to borrow from Gainsbourg)

The New Museum now? Forget about it! about a 3 hour wait in the -9 told me to move on.

But you can look at the mammoth undertaking it was for the museum to install a slide in the gallery, they cut a hole in the floor:

I stopped at the Sperone Westwater, just down the street in the Bowery. A show of sculptural work, old and new, not much of a focus but it was interesting stuff and the building is a massive structure which has work in the elevator on display. Most apartments could fit in this elevator mind you.

A sort of Gorilla John the Baptist with rubber gloves and disposable cups, all made out of marble, an ironic tour de force I suppose.

By evening fall, it was even colder, I slipped into this bar not far Chinatown, called Home sweet Home. Loud, but warm! I relaxed and drew some of the characters.

This was before it got too packed.

Also, dropped in on Caroline Falby, she is an ex-pat who is working on her Masters at Hunter College in city. Her studio is close to Times Square, it is this massive building which just feels like an old art building.

You can check out some her work here

She is working on some new stuff at the moment- she seems very interested in the War of 1812 and what it means to Canada and the United States. In the meantime, you can see her multi referential work which employs a breezy technique to inject joy and a seemingly carefree element to the work.

I drew this double drawing of the bartender while having a boozey afternoon, at the back of this place called Bread.

I really did leave the canal/chinatown area!

The Neue gallerie had some beautiful Egon Schiele drawings on display, more than you see if you go to the Albertina drawing gallery in Vienna ( but that was based on my trip in the early 90s, might have been one of those things when you go and everything is closed), so that was a treat.

If you go to NYC soon, you have to go to the Neue Gallerie, its focus is Austrian/German work -- amazing stuff. Also, have a coffee in the Cafe Sabarsky, it is a highly regarded dinner spot. I was there on Saturday and the lineups to eat were astounding.

A little sketch I made about a year and half ago while drinking a $6 Viennese coffee, it was good but six dollars? I know, I know, its New York baby.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Sketching with the Wacom Inkling

Since I was in the states, I was able to snap up one of Wacom's much talked about but super late released, Inkling. This device allows you to draw in your sketchbook ( with their ink) and a digital record will be created of the drawing. Furthermore, you can add layers while drawings and convert it into vectors....yowzers, it is exciting.
I am pretty happy with this test, clearly I did not heed do not sketch within 2cm of the reader, poor Omar has lost his head here, I was happy with that part- and Luke's head is clipped too. But a cool start. Here is to the device on Wacom's website The thing has already sold out of, and they don't ship to Canada.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Drawing based on old photos

Here is another example of photograph I picked up at Gadabout.

The inscription on the back identifies the boat as the S.S.Briarwood, which saw action in WW2, damaged but was not sunk. This picture was taken en route to England in 1938.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Jan 21st, 2011 out for Colwyn's Birthday

I did not do a drawing of Colwyn, the Toronto based artist and recipient of multiple art awards from various government bodies.

But I did catch this old coot who was wearing a jaunty angled bow tie and was playing a mean game of pool.

I did not mean for Joe and Ilka to look so serious, they were not, maybe it just came out that way as they were leaving early.

Whereas this is one of the bartenders explaining last call was over.

Here is a link to Colwyn's WORK

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sketches based on Goya and Gillray

OK, what can you say about Goya that has not been said? His etchings are incredible, its even hard to experience them first hand because as an artist you have seen them reproduced hundreds of times before you can examine them in real life.

The AGO has tried to help you! They present a folio of the "Los Caprichos which has been hand tinted by a collector, seriously? WTF. This is just silly. It chromatically works better with Gillray but that is not the idea here. The work is changed and it is hard to appreciate the fine line work and Aquatints when they are presented like Ted Turner has caca'd all over the damn things.

Gillray's work is really terrific, he shows you the other side of how the United Kingdom saw the narrative of the French Revolution, instead of the shirking off the oppression of the Monarchy, you have a sense of the fear of the reign of terror.

And then there is Larry the mensch, beset by demons on all sides.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Bartender at Bread, circa 2012

I have a drawing in my 2010 grouping of a male bartender at the front of this restaurant, this is at the back. We were having some afternoon drinks.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Alan Chan, Jan 14th 2012.

After a late night and a cold walk, we stopped at this place on Prince street cafe for a coffee.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Raymond Pettibon

I love this mad man

He has said some keen things about the war in the Persian Gulf

He has a wide variety in his work

His work is intense and honest

I came across a show of his a few years ago at the Bergamot station in Santa Monica, he had just left, apparently he was unhappy with his framed prints so he pulled out a sharpie marker and added phrases in the white space, the gallery was a bit bowled over, some of the work had already sold and they had to sell work with stuff which could be just rubbed off, you know it would go all as part of the schtick, but that hadn't smoothed that out yet.

Hey its a long video, but if you have a few minutes and don't know about this artist, have a look:

Watch Humor on PBS. See more from ART:21.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Japanese influences

As you may have spotted before, I love Japanese prints, especially those of the style called Ukiyo-e, which I think is the Meiji period after the Edo like at the end of the Samurai, very Last Samurai without Tom Cruise faffing about- actually he was ok in that film.

Personally I love the prints which are a historical record of the Sino-Japanese and the Russo-Japanese wars.

Japanese compositions are so dynamic and this time period is fascinating as the imagery is a mixture of eastern and western influences.

Also, Japanese visual culture seems so inventive even 120 years ago, check out these two images!

I think this is just marvelous, the medical treatment of a damaged ship!

And this is right out of Macbeth, look at how the Tsar Nicholas awakes to see this nightmare of damaged armaments before him

The two below are from the Russian conflict, the upper image has old school Ninja types sabotaging Russia's major advantage, the train.

The lower image: the horrific results.

Well, having looked at all this, I'm not sure you can draw a direct line to my work but it is a mystic talisman that I gravitate to on some level. My sketchbook uses more of this narrative.