Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Gearing Up

 So, after brief absence, I have returned with the finished piece I was roughing out at the time of my last post.  Let's have a look at the Derby Racer horse in full bloom, with a self-portrait astride... I have plans for this illustration.

 I don't believe I've mentioned it before, but I'm shamelessly in love with my vehicle, a 1994 Caprice Classic station wagon.  I envision the old boy as a sturdy, reliable draft horse - loaded with power, yet possessing a sensitivity that makes long trips a sheer delight.  I adore that machine.  However, I had long wanted a mode of transportation that reminds me of a harrowing, exciting ride aboard a racehorse... in this case, a Derby Race(r) example.  That machine came along my way in the shape of this:

 A wonderful 2003 Stella scooter.  I recently learned that a dear friend had decided to part with it, and I hopped on the offer immediately.  Still in the process of becoming street-legal, I furthered my bonding with the scooter by coming up with this design.  The image will be printed on vinyl, and applied to the cowls (wheel covers), just above the checker border...

 ... a happy marriage of new design and existing trim, and characteristic of speed and movement.  I'm very excited to see how the whole picture looks.  The checkerboard continues in the model's dress, scarf and helmet, and her mount is a very close representation of Marcus Illions' impeccable Rye Playland carvings.  I insisted on a palomino, the colors of which lent themselves to all sorts of tonal joys in the horse's trappings.

 As usual, I incorporated metallic ink - this time in the tack hardware, and along the rear of the saddle blanket...

I am awfully fond of natural horn-colored hooves, and put them on this beast.  The ankles and fetlocks of horses are an honest-to-God treat to draw.


Finally, for the sake of shaking things up a bit, I'm posting two images of what my work looks like in the Land of In Between, when I am beginning to apply ink via nib and inkwell.  My last entry featured raw sketches - this is the final rendition of graphite on bristol, after many layers of finessing and contemplating the sketch into a line drawing.  It's a gradual process of refining and elimination of unnecessary excess - using tracing vellum, I make a carbon with a wood-less pencil on the back, and transfer the whole shindig to smooth bristol (400 series, don't waste your time with anything else.  I learned the hard way).

 One more, of the horse's girth strap.  Once the ink is applied and fully dried, I go through with a drafter's cloth eraser bag and gently remove the graphite.  Then it's on to the coloring process, and re-inking, if I so choose.  The process is at times terrifying (once you've gone through the experience of a hand-tremble after nearly finishing a piece, you learn to breathe at meditation-level as you work from that point on), but deeply rewarding.  I never learned a thing about computer-oriented graphic design, and frankly have no interest - for me, it's all about the process of working on paper, with relatively primitive tools.  A very, very deep joy.

Here's to the road ahead...

No comments:

Post a Comment