Thursday, July 30, 2009

Who's the Bunny Boy???

Click on the title to find out... :>

So it's incredibly hot right now in Portland, OR- in the hundred degrees this entire week, in fact.  My poor pug dogs have been panting all day long...  so I've had to fill the bathtub with water and sit in there with them to help cool them off.  It helps though so that's good.  The weekend is supposed to at least go down to the 80's and 90's so I am happy.  Here is my art desk luckily sitting near two large windows in our dining/kitchen area.

I recently visited California to see my family so I spent much of the four days watching my nephews and nieces.  Try to imagine watching one 8 month old baby, two toddlers, age 4 and 5, and one 2 yr. old in scorching hot weather at Disneyland.  Yep.  Needless to say, I was exhausted when I returned home.  However, it was also super nice to see everyone again- I hadn't seen them all in a year, which is the most I've ever been away from my family.  I talk to my mom every day... and my twin and I are pretty close... not to mention the fact that I dote on my nephews and nieces quite a bit (Keegan is actually featured in The Moon and the Night Sweeper and I have in the background in one of the interior pages for I Can Speak Bully, their names on the cubbies in the classroom).. so it was about time I got to hang out again!

We took some official looking family portraits, and then some less-than official pictures on PhotoBooth...

I'm the attractive one in yellow.

If my computer continues to work I can finally scan some new sketches.  I think it's funny that I already am considering making some changes to my website... Updating and changing will continue to happen, I'm sure.  I'm liking the new features they have on Blogger as well.

I hope to have more art soon!  I can't wait to have my advance money come in so I can put it toward mailing out more art to publishers!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Summer Matsuri (Festival)

Hello all!  As promised, I finished piecing back together my scanned painting before I uploaded it here.  Today has been unbearably hot and the computer is not liking the heat at all.  I think Josh has become completely nocturnal for this reason alone.  Two computers in a small room can actually make it pretty warm even with two mini fans and one larger one on the floor.

Regarding the title, a "matsuri" is a street festival that usually happens in the summer in Japan.  I remember when I visited relatives as a pre-teen going to one of these and enjoying trying to catch goldfish with weak miniature nets, eating cotton candy, wearing a ukata (summer version of a kimono- a lot less work to put on), and sporting a uchiha/round hand-held fan.  I also remember festivals we would throw at our Japanese School in Long Beach, California, USA which involved many of the same games as well as a huge tower in the center of the playground with a large drum (taiko) at the top... this would be played while they blasted music from speakers.  Everyone would dance around this in a circle with their fans or just doing the hand jestures.  Sounds pretty bizarre I suppose, but these were some of my favorite memories growing up.  Granted getting up every morning on a Saturday while your American schoolmates got to sleep in sucked, but I now, of course, find it all worth while.  We had speech contests and Christmas plays, Boys and Girls Day, and other fun events to help keep our heritage alive way out in California.
Anyway, this scene isn't exactly authentic.... the thing the boy is carrying on his back is a smaller taiko drum wrapped around him, with the sticks held to his belly.  I'm not sure if people would do this... taiko drums are pretty darn heavy... so imagine this is a bit fantastical... aside from the children playing on rooftops!
So here's to summer!! :)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

little update

I have my painting ready to post, but the scanner was not working today, so that will have to wait until I can get that fixed...  I think it turned out alright.  I have ideas for more paintings and the like stewing in my head.  I am thinking about trying to get more sketches posted on my website as well.
In the meanwhile, I updated a lot of links on here to include blogs that I like to follow.  All of these links I visit regularly and find tons of inspiration as well as first-hand accounts from illustrators out in the field.  It can sometimes seem like such a small, lonely little world unless you remind yourself that everyone has been where you are and everyone starts from somewhere.  In the midst of trying to survive some personal events not related to art, I have been trying to view my portfolio objectively and tap back into what I like to draw or paint... I feel like I go back and forth between wanting to perfect how I paint and work, to trying to remember what it is I like to draw, and then also, what is necessary to show I CAN draw or paint in order to get work.
I think that all you can do when you are stuck in a rut is just keep drawing... just keep painting.  I think life managed to creep up and hit me pretty hard these past weeks and had left me feeling a bit disillusioned...  but I think I'm back.  And a lot of that stuff has been resolved to some extent... so to change things to a positive note before I end this post, I hope to post that painting I finally finished and keep on posting... 
So, go check out some of these links!!! :)