Posts Tagged ‘drawing’

An Elephant Takes Flight

Stain Drawing - Elephant

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One of the more fun and fanciful assignments in my drawing class was an exercise where we took a stain (in my case some wine I spilled on some paper), and drew what we saw in it. My stain had this funny little outcropping that I thought looked like an elephant head, so I started there and just let my imagination go — and I ended up with an elephant flying through the clouds!

Black and White Drawings

Black and White Drawing Study

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During my drawing class one interesting exercise we did was drawing a white and black object. We looked at the range of values in each object and really looked at how a black object isn’t fully black — or at least one black — and a white object isn’t fully white. I think my black object turned out better than my white one. I also found out that I really like drawing with charcoal pencils.

6 Views of a Little Zsolnay Sculpture

Zsolnay sculpture drawing study

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Here’s something I did recently for a drawing class I was taking — a 6-part study of the Zsolnay sculpture Evan gave me for my 25th birthday in Hungary. The assignment was to try 6 different styles. I used pen, pencil, charcoal and pastels. The middle two are my favorites.

Finding a Sense of Interspace

I’m taking a couple more UCLA Extension classes this quarter — Color Methodologies and Drawing for Communications. I haven’t done too much yet that I’ve wanted to post up here, but I feel like my positive/negative space composition turned out well, so I thought I’d share it.

The idea was to create a sense of “interspace,” a balance between positive and negative space, by creating a photomontage and deciding which areas to use as positive space, and which as negative. I had a lot of trouble at first, not liking my compositions and not feeling inspired — I was also really short on time. So I turned to a past photomontage project I’d done — decoupage chairs, and decided to use them as inspiration.

Here’s what I came up with:

positive and negative space composition

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Here’s the original photo I took of the chair so you can see what I was working from.

Decoupage Chair - Photomontage

How to Win at Boggle: A Mind Map

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Click to view a larger version

This week’s class project was a lot more involved than past weeks’. We had to create an autobiographical infographic, and in doing so use the principles of design we’ve learned in class, including hierarchy, balance and unity.

I had a lot of different thoughts about what topic to choose: something travel related about the around-the-world trip, the past year, or packing; something about me an Evan, maybe a comic strip based on the books I created about everything we did up until he left for Budapest; something based on this blog, going over its stats, my posting trends, or how it relates to my social networks… The list went on and on. One idea that kept nagging me, though, was how to win at boggle.

I’ve been good at Boggle for a while now. I’m not quite sure how it started, but I think it has something to do with me enjoying playing online in college. From there, I realized that I could beat just about anyone I played in real life, and a lot of the people I played against online. I could just see the words in a certain way that made sense, and I could create some really long word lists because of it. I played about a week ago with my parents and their friends, and again I came out the winner in every game, playing against people who consider themselves Boggle fans, so I thought it would be interesting to try and explain what I see.

So I created a Boggle board that spelled out “Win at Boggle” along with a few extra letters filled in, played the game (I didn’t time myself), and then annotated the list with tips on how or why I wrote down certain words. To create the final piece, I decided to go into the more important elements of the game, including some notes on strategies and other tips for winning.

The piece is all done by hand with various pens and colored pencils — something just felt right about doing it by hand since it’s a game you play by hand.

It was hard trying to get everything balanced, in the right place and colored properly in one shot. I created pieces of the final composition in a notebook and transferred them with tracing paper to color in, but it was still tough since I couldn’t change anything once it was down and in pen.

In class, it was well received. People didn’t even realize that I did it by hand from a distance, and nobody else did anything on games. There were some great projects in class, though, including a beautiful watercolor and pen map of a neighborhood, an Egyptian-style accounting of all one person’s pet’s deaths, and a flow chart of someone’s workout cycle.

Order to Chaos in Lines

Order to Chaos

I’m currently taking a design fundamentals class at UCLA Extension, and today our first project was due. We had to show a progression from order to chaos, using only lines. I had this concept in my head from the start of intersecting lines on a diagonal that would bounce back at each other and slowly break down into chaos.

The critique from the class was pretty good overall. They felt the design was cohesive, it had a good transition area and it was balanced. The biggest complaint was that I didn’t push the chaos concept enough, which is something I struggled with as I was composing the piece. Maybe I should have had everything break apart at the end, with no continuous lines. I also feel that I could have made some more of the chaotic lines heavier, which would have also helped the reception from the back of the class — it was very hard to see the thinner lines when you stepped back, which made it feel more orderly than it was.

I’m pretty happy with how it turned out and I’m excited to start tackling next week’s shape assignment. I’ve finally retrieved my drafting table from my parents’ house and pulled out my design tools. It’s great to be creating some physical pieces, which I haven’t done in a long time.

Britishism: Gutted

Britishism: GuttedOne of my favorite Britishisms is the term “gutted.” Basically, “I’m absolutely gutted” is just a really overdramatic way to say “I’m disappointed.” But it’s so much more graphic.

I always imagine entrails spilling out, or maybe an entire lack of a gut. And though the term seems quite dire, it’s usually used when a Brit is distraught that he won’t be able to make it to the pub that night or that he has to leave dinner a bit early. I haven’t yet heard it used for anything serious.

It also seems to be begging for a response like, “Don’t get your intestines in a bunch.”