Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Messing around.

If you read my profile or the first post, I think I mention somewhere I'm an aspiring car designer. As of now I only have ONE car sketch up on my blog. That might be a problem.

So today I went to school to just sketch with a friend. He's in the Motorcycle Design program whereas I'm in the Car Design program. I'm a big fan of bikes myself and when ever I get together with him we just end up talking about motorcycles and end up skecthing motorcycles.

He said something to me that was a slap in the face, but a slap in the in the face worth considering. His words exactly, "You know, your car designs are really boring, but everytime you draw a bike, it's not bad. Maybe you should switch to the motorcycle design program and keep me company.". Ouch ... Ouch! But he's a honest guy and I appreciate that. So that being said here's one of my doodles from today.
I haven't rendered a car or a motorcycle in Photoshop for awhile so I'd though I'll give it a shot today. It's a lot simpler than sketching something out of my imagination, but hot damn I need to work on my speed!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Baby steps ...

and by baby steps I mean baby steps for baby steps. I thought I'd work on my title page a little more and started by looking at some reference photos of landscapes. To get more depth in my picture I thought I'd try desaturating the background more and adding more contrast in the foreground. Also I added some more faint mountains behind the ones that are already there. The biggest change would probably be the size of the man in the scene. I looked at it for awhile and I thought, "Damn he's huge!".

So here's what it looks like as of now.

I just added a quick shadow and I'll work on the man in a bit more detail tomorrow. I think I'm getting the hang out it. I'm sure I'll be eating my words tomorrow, but for now just baby steps. Baby steps for baby steps!

Monday, April 26, 2010

There's no road, but the hard road.

Ain't that true Sam(Hard Road - Sam Roberts). So a few days ago I went to my friend's house to get out of my slump of not drawing at all. It went surprisingly efficiently. I got back into the groove of things by warming up with drawing lines and circles and drew a quick car and coloured it with some markers.

After that I thought I'll give myself a challenge and set up a glass cup with a silver spoon and fork inside. At school we usually take about 4-5 hours for a drawing, but this time I only gave myself 2 hours, because I wanted to draw other things. Since I haven't drawn anything in a long time, trying to draw something transparent right away was a little daunting, but I just put pencil to paper and hoped my muscles remembered what to do more than my mind. Two hours later I was happy with what I ended up with for the amount of time I gave myself. I'm not going to post it, because it's horrid, but it was a nice way to ease myself into things again.

Putting my sketch book aside, I decided to start my visual narrative or whatever you call it. The story I have in my head is a bored, possibly disgruntled individual on a small planet looking for excitement. I scanned it and took it home. I bought a few "How to ..." books on digital painting, because I thought this would help me with my Photoshop renderings of my car sketches and it'll be fun. A lot of the tutorials in the book and online has the artist start by blocking in shapes. I mean the 5 - 10 minute YouTube videos seems simple enough. How hard could it be? Well pretty damn hard I think. I think I got the hang of blocking in shapes in gray-scale, because it's kind of like drawing with a pen or pencil. When I try to colour the drawing is where it all goes wrong. Having not really worked with colour and there being a million ways to colour a sketch, I bounced around from one tutorial to another trying out different techniques to see one suits me.

They're still works in progress, but here's where I'm at right now.

The drawing on top is a man on a foreign planet looking out into space and I guess reaching into the distance. I can seem to get depth in the drawing. I know as further objects are the colours become desaturated, because of the atmosphere. I tried putting craters or rocks between the foreground and the mountains in the background, but I can't get it to look nice. If anyone has any tips it'll be much appreciated!
The drawing on the bottom is supposed to be a man in a space-suit mining. I'm having a hard time adding colour. I'ved tried painting directly on to the sketch, painting on a new layer, creating a new layer and setting it on colour mode and then putting my base colours down and then creating another new layer and painting directly on the sketch, but nothing is really working for me. If yo have any pointers, it would be much appreciated.
I'm trying to figure out how digital artists get those nice shapes and lines. I'm working with a mouse which doesn't help, but I know that's not the main problem. More detail? Different brushes? I have no idea.

I'll try the best I can and put up the final images as soon as possible.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Onwards and Upwards...

well I guess. I mean I'm pretty much starting from nothing so I can only go up, right? Or I can not try and be horrible to the point where I go beyond "crappy" and emerge on the other side "genius". Hmmm ... just kidding. Well to give you an idea where I started in April(2009), basically as far as sketching goes I couldn't even draw a box. Well I drew a box, but the perspective was wrong, there was no detail, and worst of all I couldn't shade correctly so it didn't look 3D. As far as my car sketching goes, all of that plus ... really really ugly wheels.

So after my 30 weeks of assignments(1 class a week for 10 weeks per term for 3 terms) I'm somewhere around here.

For 30 weeks it's not bad, but then again for 30 weeks it could be a lot better. I didn't make it into the advanced class for my school. But there's a chance I could get in after the first semester this year. Therefore my goal for the 1st term is to improve more then I did from all of last year.

Setting myself for a big task eh? For starter's I'm going to have to start drawing everyday. It sounds easy to do, as it should be, but when you get to know me, I'm a CHRONIC procrastinator. Sketch some cars everyday, sketch an object everyday, and work on my "visual narrative". Those are my three pillars to success!

Pillar One - Draw a car everyday with a concept. That means defining the user and how the car will be used.

Pillar Two - Sketch and object everyday. Whether it be a self-portrait, my shoes, or a whiskey bottle. Work on some classical sketching.

Pillar Three - My "visual narrative". I don't know what to call it actually. It's like a comic book with out words; like those high quality story-boards people draw when making movies. (Have you seen the Art of the Matrix or the Art of Avatar) That's the kind of thing I'm talking about. If you know what it's called, please let me know. With this I can practice Photoshop and do something other than draw cars. I like Sci-Fi, so it'll be nice to draw some spaceships and imaginary worlds.

So my goal is to do at least one of each a day. I;ll just have to see how well it goes!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Jumping into the deep end ...

well not really. I guess this would be my first post of what I guess would be my first blog. My friend said it'll be a good way keep track of my life. Keep track of what? Keeping track of my progress while I aspire to become a designer.

Where to start? I guess I should say a little about myself. Although I always feel a little weird talking about myself. It feels so ... well I guess ... narcissist. I'm an aspiring car design student living, studying, and working in Tokyo, Japan right now. I just recently finished my first year at school and soon to be entering my second. I was studying graphic design in Vancouver for two years, but I felt like university was like high-school again. Having to take courses that didn't interest me and not focusing on design. So I quit and I just worked a part-time job selling home theatre systems when I decided out of the blue that I wanted to go to Japan for a year and wing it. During that first year in Japan I found a school in Tokyo that focuses on car design and I thought I would take my chance on it. I've always loved cars and motorcycles and I've always liked drawing and sketching so I thought, "Hey! 1 + 1 = 2, so why not?". When I first started school last year, I've never studied art classically or theoretically. I never even shaved a pencil with a knife before. To make this long story SHORT, I realized I need to be able to draw everything to become a good designer. All the designers(Product, Graphic, Game, Everything!) I admire have classical training and I'm pretty sure they can draw anything. So I hope to update my blog with my progress and what not.

Feel free to give me some constructive criticisms and comments on my work! The best of luck to all of us!