Some pencil sketches done a few weeks ago at The De Young Museum.
In an earlier post, I lamented that many artists who inspired me when I entered the animation business have no web presence. I am happy to say that now, the mighty DEANE TAYLOR has a BLOG, and is posting insanely cool doodles every other day.
It is hard to overstate what an incredible inspiration Deane was to me at the very beginning of my career. When I was around 18, he took me under his wing and taught me 2D animation layouts; composition, shape, silhouette, staging and all that fun stuff, and his influence is with me to this very day. His quirky drawing style, so full of wit and invention was, and still is, a constant wonder to me. I am so happy that he is posting online where I can get access to his drawings once again.
So please, go look at DEANE’S BLOG, where you’ll find in equal measure tasty drawings and hilarious musings on his long career in the animation industry.
“In the aftermath of the ongoing tragedy in Japan, I was so anxious that I had a hard time focusing on painting. Although I originally would have liked to make something more uplifting or encouraging, the event was simply too devastating, with the death toll of tens of thousands and millions suffering right now.
This piece is dedicated to all of the survivors and to those that have lost their lives.”
100% of the proceeds from the sale will go to Give2Asia.
Last weekend was jam-packed with fun-ness, including a trip to the fabulous MAKER FAIRE.
I may have found my new favourite arts festival. It is a tasty blend of Comic Con, Burning Man, a crafts fair and ROBOT WARS all rolled into one. If (like me) you are intrigued by the creativity at Burning Man but would gladly forgo all the nudity, sunburn (and burnouts) then this show might be for you. There are Fabulous bands, home-made robots, indie comics, steam punk machinery buffs and just about every thing creative that you can imagine, all with a focus on the DIY. This fantastic show is only 5 years old and it started here in the Bay Area (at the San Mateo showgrounds) and now there are Maker Faires springing up all over the place; Austin, Detroit, New York and Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Rather than only taking place in one big, air-less barn of a building (like any comics show I have been to) the Maker Faire happens both inside pavilion buildings and outside in the sunshine. There are plenty of crowds but there is also the means to get away from them and sit down outside, have a snack and STILL be immersed in the experience, while all manner of weird and wonderful things pass you by. A girl driving a cup-cake car. A man operating a walking spider vehicle. A giant cardboard robot. A JULES VERNE Penny-Farthing bicycle. A steam-powered jalopy or a parade of punky kids on their souped-up bicycles.
We only went for one of the two days, but could easily have done another day without repeating ourselves. Part of me wants to exhibit at this show next time, but a larger part wants to just go and attend, to take in all the sights rather than be stuck behind a booth. But whatever happens, I will definitely be there NEXT year and so should you!
I have been busy lately, but creative output on my personal projects has been slow… Which sounds like a good excuse to post about interesting things my friends have been doing.
Sanjay Patel has completed a new book, called RAMAYANA: DIVINE LOOPHOLE, this time published by CHRONICLE BOOKS. It is another of his explorations of, and introductions to, the stories told about Indian gods, done in his super elegant graphic style (the real Indian deity is Sanjay himself, in my opinion). I’ve seen this beautiful book but arrived too late to secure my own copy at his recent book signing at SUPER 7. You can order your copy now from AMAZON.
Brian McDonald also has recently published a new book, called INVISIBLE INK, all about the secrets of telling a good story. Some of the ideas have been mentioned on his always interesting INVISIBLE INK blog, but the book contains all of his wisdom and many years of experience as a screenwriter and teacher of story-telling, bound in one tidy package. I have already read the manuscript and fully intend to pick up a copy of this great book. It is available now on AMAZON.
Rhode Montijo has been up to more of his street-art hijinks… Spreading good-vibes and creativity for no other reason than he enjoys doing so; a philosophy that I greatly admire. I already posted about his CRAYON PORTRAITS caper and now you can read about OPERATION SNOWMAN on his own blog HERE. After years of enjoying such Rhode shenanigans as this, I am beginning to suspect that he is actually an elf, or hobbit or some other such magical creature, and not human at all.
Working at LAIKA Studios in Beautiful Portland has allowed me to meet some wonderful artists. None of whom I had met before, but some who’s work I was already familiar with.
VERA BROSGOL is incapable of doing an un-appealing drawing. Beautiful storyboard drawings simply SQUIRT from her fingertips (personally, I have to GRUNT mine out). Not only a bad-ass storyboarder, (one of the tiny story-team on CORALINE) Vera is also a comics artist extraordinaire (a founding member of FLIGHT). I saw a book she is working on now and it is just super; the writing, the drawing, the works. More about Vera on her site and not-very-often-updated blog.
GRAHAM ANNABLE‘s brilliant work was familiar to me long before I ever met him. He is one of the founders of the HICKEE comics anthology and his YOUTUBE animation has given me chuckles for ages now. Graham’s sense of animation timing is truly hilarious. He too is a super storyboard artist (another CORALINE alumnus) and this master of all things also finds time to keep a regularly updated Blog
CHRIS TURNHAM‘s lovely designs for CORALINE can be seen on his Blog. His beautiful artwork also graces the walls of one of the project development rooms at Laika (I sneak in there to check out his paintings for inspiration every so often). Chris is part of a book collaboration with his friend Kevin Dart, and more info about Chris’ very own art prints can be found at at his folio website.
Gordon Clark is a long-time friend and co-worker; we were colleagues at both Colossal Pictures and at Wild Brain. Like me, Gordon is a bad-movie aficionado. He is no less than the founder of GOMER NIGHT (where like-minded nerds rent crappy movies and make fun of them whilst enjoying them). I am pleased to announce that Gordon finally has his own outpost on the web, which is stuffed full of great cartoon content; Storyboards, animation clips, his hilarious character designs and more. Check it all out!
Earlier I mentioned Arthur Filloy‘s Airplane drawing blog, Drawn Patrol. He now has another blog called PISSTAKE PLATOON which likewise showcases old drawings done at work, though this time the focus is not on planes, but general silliness; Caricatures, in jokes and other drawings done to amuse each-other while we all worked on mind-numbingly terrible Saturday morning cartoons. If you worked in the Sydney animation community from the late 1970s through the 1980s then check out Arthur’s new blog. You may see some familiar faces, perhaps even your own. More and more people are digging through their old stashes of art and submitting pics to the blog; I am scanning mine at the moment, so there are likely to be updates each week for the foreseeable future
Recently, I posted a drawing I’d done for an art auction without giving any details, so here they are: On September 6th, PIXAR STUDIOS will host an auction of artwork done by 184 artists to raise money for the TOTOTO FOREST PROJECT; a foundation to protect urban forests in Japan. I wont attending because I will be in Australia, but my drawing will be representing me there. Others who can not attend (unfortunately tickets are required, and they sold out very quickly) can see the ART GALLERY on the official website. Additionally, ALL the art will be on display at the CARTOON ART MUSEUM between September 2008-March 2009, and a book of the artwork will be on sale. More info can be found at the OFFICIAL BLOG
Derek Thompson’s website is called DerekMonster because of his love of drawing monsters but the moniker also fits the man himself, because he is an ART MONSTER. Derek will share his hyperactive and hyper-talented style of magic in his forthcoming lecture in the Gnomon Workshop series of DVDs, where artists from the film, comics and illustration industries each show their working processes. (I wish something like these DVDs had been available when I was a teenager- all I had was mail-in, learn-to-draw classes). Derek’s instructional DVD will be ready in time for Comic Con but a fore-taste of the Derek flava can be had by reading DEREK’s GNOMON INTERVIEW.