Saturday, February 20, 2016

painted pilot

 Well I got my RAF pilot painted the other day and I think he came out quite nice. My pilot ornaments in the past have had a red cap but I made his a grayish blue. I probably could have gone a tad darker and may have gotten the color closer to the color of the RAF uniforms. Still overall I am happy with the ornament even the little patch on the tassel and the crown placed above that. That's the nice thing about caricature carvings they just have to represent the character not be a perfect match. 

This is part of the fun for me doing the old pilots I can incorporate some of the old insignia and images onto the carving and it gives it a nice vintage feel. This guy will be jumping the pond in the next few days at he heads home to England. I think he will feel right at home there. 

 as always, Good night and may God bless

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Yes water color brushes that hold the water in the handle, so far these are awesome. I am not heavy into the graphic world so these may have been around for a good while but none the less I have the Pentel brushes and so far I am thrilled with how they perform or should I say how I perform utilizing these new brushes. Mix in these with my water color pencils, this is a winning combination. I am leaning towards doing most of my cartoons in gray scale with minor hints of color thrown in as seen in the image shown.

as always, 
"Good night and may God bless"

Sunday, February 7, 2016

ornaments, really?

Yes, ornaments, I spent the last two nights dusting off the carving tools and carved two ornaments. I haven't carved in a bit as I usually take some time off after the holidays and let the tools cool down. These two guys have something similar to most my carvings but also have something that is not that similar to my carvings of late. As you see the two carvings are Santa ornaments which is not unusual for me to carve though usually not at this time of the year. What is unusual is these two are carved in bass wood opposed to butternut. This past year the majority of my ornaments have been done in butternut wood and honestly will probably continue to be. I get a wonderful antique look for my ornaments with this wood with its strong and expressive grain. Yet this year I will be carving more bass wood or at least at present time this is what I believe to be my goal, but things can change so don't hold me to this.

 The first of the two is a squinting happy Santa with as you see a big smile on his face. One thing I do is to keep very simple lines when it comes to the teeth, for my ornaments there are times when less is more. I could carve out each tooth but sometimes this can make the carving seem busy. For most if they see a carving with a mouth wide open and a large white area they simply accept this as the characters teeth, not needing to see every one of them carved in detail.

The second is a Santa trying to catch a snowflake on his tongue. I have penciled in were the eyeballs may be painted but may change this once the paints are out. I have considered having them either looking up more as if to be trying to find the perfect snowflake or having them looking down at his nose, possibly verifying that what he caught was in actuality a snowflake. Either will help with the telling of the story and this is what we try to do with each carving, convey an expression that your mind can attach a story line to. This is what after all the faces I have carved continues to make carving faces a joy and challenge.

as always, 
"Good night and may God bless" 

Friday, February 5, 2016

roughouts ready

Before I forget to mention this Mark Akers now has his roughouts ready for the Santa ornament he carved this past year. It is a beautiful ornament and the roughouts look great and should make a fun project for carvers of all levels, glasses not included =].
So if you are looking for a fun and unique roughout, this is it.

as always, 
Good night and may God bless 

more questions than answers

Have you ever started a project and halfway into it you realized you had more questions than answers? That seems to be the case for me at this stage, but remember; 

It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The "hard" is what makes it great.

With the new book idea I am trying to figure out how I want to proceed but more importantly, what is the best way to proceed. Here is the dilemma, I am looking at publishing my book through Amazon and with this I need to make the decision as to what readers will be used to view my book. You see I don't know if there are more readers that handle color nowadays or if the majority still do b&w only. For my cartoons I need to do them in one of three ways; pencils sketch, pen n ink, full color probably water color.  I think any of the three choices would look good but I lean towards either the pencil sketches or the water color illustrations. If I go the direction of color then I could always have the first portion of the book the water color illustrations and then in the back of the book let folks see the original cartoon sketch.

One thing that has always been the case and the motivation for this book is that people will look at the cartoons and give me their version of what they think the object would be saying. I have always loved the way the people have become part of the cartoon and hope I can set up the book that this continues to be the case. As I am writing this, on the radio is Martina McBride's "Anyway", wow what a reminder that no matter how this plays out I need to do this just to be able to say I did.

You can chase a dream
That seems so out of reach
And you know it might not never come your way
Dream it anyway

God is great
But sometimes life ain't good
And when I pray
It don't always turn out like I think it should
But I do it anyway
I do it anyway

Martina McBride "Anyway"

as always, 

Good night and may God bless