Wednesday, October 29, 2008

And I Create the Mountains....

The other day I posted an in progress piece which I am titling "And I Create the Mountains". It marks the first time in a little while that I have pulled together a new tone in my palette, and I think it lends itself well to the painting.

Also I tried to push the angles in this piece and avoid the overall static feel that I have been stumbling into of late with my pieces. All in all, I think this is a good step in the right direction, and I find myself incredibly excited to get back into the studio again tomorrow.

Don't look now folks but I think the fire is rekindled....

With any luck we'll have a halloween post coming up too. Thanks for stopping by, and be sure to let me know what you think of the new piece.

- Mike

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pink is like red but not quite.

This week has been super rough, emotionally draining, and entirely too eventful. Hopefully the weeks to come don't have nearly as much "excitement" in store for me. But one thing is definitely true, the more stressful the time I am having in my day to day life the more creative I feel and more positive about my artwork....

Which leads me to pink. I've been expanding my palette of late, from the basic palette to adding a couple more colors into the mix. So I started this evening by drawing a machine over top of a bird piece I had started that was not going well at all. It felt good to destroy something that was going poorly again. It seems like it had been so long since I had actually done that. It really needed to be done. Then I started laying out colors and low and behold I had a mostly warm palette, which I have not worked with in about two years.....

So since this is a benchmark I've come to here, I decided to show the in prog again. Please let me know what you think.

It actually reminds me a lot of the original cloud constructor pieces, which I was very fond of, so it doesn't bother me at all if I'm starting to feel that wave come back a little bit. Also, I'm branching out with the constructors a bit anyway. Here we have one of the first erecting let me know what you think of the new digs here. I'm pretty amped on it so i think I will be going for some time.

And this one is for Steve. Royal guard you say, Royal guard you get......Probably needs a pole arm though.....
All right enough geekiness, time for bed....Until next time.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Happy Thursday!

Hey it's almost time for the weekend. Good times, good times. I've been geering up for a pretty good one myself. If I'm not sick and working it will already be better than last weekend. Also with any luck it will be slow and I can draw instead of cook while I am at said place of work as well.

So I've been a little bit of a creative slump they last few months, trying to come up with something insanely awesome for this show in Seattle coming up next spring. Frankly I think I've been over analyzing and putting undue pressure on myself. It is after all just another show.

Last night though, I finally was able to break through the haze a little bit and I came up with this finished sketch. I'm really into the tall robots, and the bird/creature in front is a little homage to Hieronymus Bosch.

It's weird to start off with pop culture ( I started with the robots ) and seek a solution for composition and subject matter, which ends up being a reference to the classical.

The thought process reminds me a little of the newest work that I've seen from Henry Lewis, where he is referencing old Roman sculptures as well as classic baroque style paintings. My professors in school would harp on the fact that those works will always be recognized as good, but you don't really think about the weight of a statement like that while you are in school.

But I digress.....
So there is it is the first sketch that I feel is moving a little more in a direction that I would like to handle this Blue Bottle show with.

Check back for more soon.

Monday, October 20, 2008

New Robots, New Studio, and sickly Jamming out to Moby

For some reason I have been listening to "Play" all day. It's a nice calm album to spend a sick day to. I'm sick today, which means that I am sitting out the web except for working on my blog and that I am spending the rest of my time napping, drinking water, and drawing. Maybe later I'll even watch another movie.

It's been a good few days. I've had a lot of opportunity to get my artwork together, and really think about what I want my contribution to the art world to be. Like Tony Stark in the recent Iron Man film, I don't want my legacy to pointless. I want it to be productive and positive.

So I've been working on more robot sketches, trying to figure out the next generation of robots in the Lewis Acrylic Oeuvre.
Here is a page of robots that I did at work of all places. I like the spider legs. It makes me think of a Tim Burton character, and that is a good thing.

This robot was granted the name F.R.E.D. by my buddy Patrick.
Factory Retro Educational Droid.

I think it's kind a of a cool new direction to be exploring. I haven't made very many square looking characters, at least in robot form, most of them have been a little more amorphous with toothy mouths, etc.

This character I thought of while starting at the pizza oven at the Village Pizza and Grill. The pieces on the side were a play on the latches to the front piece of the oven, and the large eye is a play on the opening where all of the pizzas go in. The circle in the chest plate is most likely some subconscious linking to Iron Man which I have watched way too much this past month.

Also today I decided to post the next phase of the painting of the robot that I started last week. I don't know if this is something that you folks like, but I thought it might be cool for you to see how some of my paintings progress. I usually start off my paintings in a bunch of midtones, like you could see in the post last week, and then start to build in darks and then I build up my lights last.

The arm to the right is in the stage where I have just started to build in the darks whereas the arm on the left is closer to finish.
The head is pretty much finished, minus highlights on the eye-sockets to make them pop a little more.

I am still playing with the background and usually do this until
I determine exactly which color is most prevalent in the main figure, because I want the background colors to pop the main character out a little bit, to make him, or her for you feminists out there, and make it feel a little bit more round err square.

Please let me know what you think of these in progress scans. If you'd like to see more then I will post more.

I will try to have the completed robot up later this week. It all depends on how quickly I get well.

Lastly , I thought some of you might like to see my new studio space. I had been working in a spot on the three season porch but for those of you who have ever been to New England , you know that that will become rather uncomfortable very soon. So my very awesome girlfriend, wife to be, Beth re-organized half of our kitchen this last week so we both have a studio.

Here are a couple photos so you can check out my half.

This is a pick of my awesome drafting table. Thank you Al Rozzi. You rock! And also you will notice on the wall a new painting by my favorite painter, Beth Page. I have robot envy......

And this is my spot, where after a quick nap I will be spending the rest of the day. Take care folks......

Thursday, October 16, 2008

All Right, All Right Hold it!

Enough depressing crap up here. I'm starting to sound like a manic depressive or something. Truth is, I haven't been sleeping or painting enough to make myself feel what is the answer for that? Sleep and paint more. "Variety is the spice of life..." Due to recent emails I've received I feel like I should mess up that old saying just for the heck of it, but I'll be good.....

So anyway, if you've been coming around here lately, you've probably noticed one of several things. 1.)I haven't sounded stoked on life......FIXING IT!!! 2.) I have been drawing and painting mostly birds.....FIXING IT!!! and 3.) I'm a little insane......FAT CHANCE MAN!!!! pattern stops there, no continuous loop, your computer will continue to function.

I just watched this awesome movie last night "King of California". Frankly it made me love life again, and now I am thinking about what I am here for instead, what people are making me do, and decisions that I want to make for myself and my artwork instead of what other people want me to do etc....

So in conclusion.....

This is a painting in progress. I am close to done with the head, which rules cuz I started this bad boy this morning. These guys are my enforcers. They will ward off all of the evil spirits that want me to paint birds for the rest of my life.......(only to let me paint birds in moderation!)

Was it the first day that God created the mountains? I don't know. But it will be on the 2010 year that we will fabricate our own. In my head at least. Who knows. It could happen.

In culmination....I am totally amped on this one. It has been a long time since I've done pipes in the sky, and frankly, that is sad, because that was my world that I Terry Pratchett's Disc World and Tolkiens Middle Earth, this is my own rendition.....Though I can only hope to visually say as much as Asimov or Dick might have said in words......

Until next time......

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I feel so old.......

For folks that usually come here just to check new paintings out, I apolgise. At this time I feel like I've got no one left to talk to and like I've dug my own hole. So I am hashing this out on my blog, who is frankly a voiceless and awesome friend to me at this point.

There may have been a time that I thought that starting your own business might be easy. I really can't remember now what my perspective has been over the years. All I know is that, If that was what I thought, I could never have been more wrong.

The pizza shop fired a cook this week, which means I will have to pick up a shift. I now work three doubles a week. I have three days "off", these being days that I work on the web. This morning which is essentially two hours before I go to the pizza shop, I have already been the recipient of two emails from a business guy in Mass that wants updates made to his site.....

I have devoted my creative time to a business, that I now no longer care if it survives.....and I feel so old, like this guy, that came into the shop the other day. It started as a drawing of him, but turned into how I felt like I should look, tired and ready to quit. Sometimes it takes something harsh to realize how much you really liked what you were doing.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Tomorrow is the Concord Arts Market

Tomorrow is the Concord arts Market. This will mark the first time that I go to an art market with an actual tent. It will also be the first time that I am offering prints. For those of you familiar with my website they are the two pieces available through Stella Gialla.....

Rocking House Finch
Blue Bird Rock #3

The prints will be a measly ten bucks ( you know you want to buy both for that price ....! ) I will also be showing about fifteen to twenty originals including several of my sketches and selling copies of my zine that I did with Ivy Page, writer and grad school whiz...... Halo

by the way we are planning another book soon.....It will be bigger faster stronger and better.

But for now, here is a piece that I finished for the show tonight. If you've checked out sketches up on the blog lately you might recognize the character, and the pose for that matter......

Hope to see a bunch of you tomorrow.......and if this included a surprise visit to nh by one awesome K Belly, I would be most pleased......(miss you)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Had to share my new robot

So here we go again....I will be showing my work at the Concord Arts Market in two days and what am I doing? Yes, you guessed it! Scrambling to get some new work done for the show. I don't ever feel prepared, no matter how much work I have to take with me, and this particular show, I haven't had time to prepare for as much as others due to web work.

But here it is, my thoughts on exactly what wearing a tie means to me......or perhaps just a whimsical piece. Either way it is another robot and I am excited about him. There are also a couple more pieces to come in the next two days, so be sure to check back.......

Until next time......Bahwidda bah dih dang dih dang diggy diggy