Wednesday, October 25, 2017

"Welcome To My Daydream" a New Documentary



At last, the whole story of Will Vinton and Claymation is going to be told by filmmaker Marq Evans in the new documentary “Welcome To My Daydream”

This link from Cartoon Brew goes more in depth about the film and its importance in animation history: http://www.cartoonbrew.com/documentary-2/exclusive-first-look-will-vinton-documentary-welcome-daydream-153840.html  

I’m not sure where I first saw “Rip Van Winkle” but it touched me emotionally with that strange beauty good animation has.  I remember these surreal moments in the film where Rip is dancing in the sky with pulsing color blobs set to the beat of the music, and how affecting the song Rip sang to his friend at the end was.   Later, I ran across a 16MM print of the early documentary made in the 70's about Claymation and saw a young Will Vinton with long hair and a full beard, along with Barry Bruce, and I think, Bill Fiesterman, and Joan Gratz.  It must have been during the shooting of “Martin the Cobbler” because it had this great scene where a clay crew of stage hands is frustrating the clay actor playing Martin. The door to the miniature set opens and the giant head of Will himself peeks in to ask how things are going on set.  I knew then and there these were people after my own heart and wanted to work for them one day. 

Not only is Will one of the sweetest people I know, but so many good things have come from the opportunities he made possible for me and many others.  Thank you Mr. Vinton, I look forward to seeing your story continue.  


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Best Workstation Yet

It's been awhile since I've posted anything which means I've been busy, but here's an update on my search for ergonomic working in the digital age.

I ran across a workstation that is very similar to mine using the same software, Cintiq and monitor configuration.  The big difference is that I don't have to reach over my drawing to get to my keyboard and that surprisingly makes a real difference.

CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
You can see my system, on the left with the yellow sub on the monitor, can dock menus on the large monitor and leave the Cintiq free for drawing.  My Cintiq is elevated and at a comfortable height and angle for drawing and my keyboard is mounted underneath which is ergonomically better and keeps me from stretching over my drawing to get to.
  

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Fake Gnus

Fake Gnus
 Click on image to enlarge

This is my latest painting based on an incredible photo I ran across.  I wish I knew who the photographer was so I can give him the proper credit but I chose to do this at the prompting of my wife and the challenge of painting all those textures.  This is another combination of acrylic and oils where I struck in the background with acrylics and to get the foggy haze I did a wash with a thin layer of white.  I did the animals as far as I could in acrylics but turned to oils for more control.  One day I may learn how to use acrylics totally but I'm not there yet.

Monday, May 01, 2017

Dino Floss



I was sent some old memories.  My daughter grew up watching a children’s show called Adventures in Wonderland on the Disney Channel that had animated stories done by the Will Vinton Studios.  Here’s a piece I did called Dino Floss that John Ashley Pratt designed the characters for.  These stories were some of the most fun I had at the studio and I ended up doing over twenty of them.  Good times!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Adding Color to Faded Photo

Before and After Restoration  (click on image to enlarge)
A friend sent me a picture from his childhood that his mother treasured.  It's a good example of the instability of color photography.  For whatever reason the colors fade and eventually become almost monochromatic leading toward sepia.

Using Photoshop I was able to do a restoration that my friend was happy with.  It was kind of tricky  because detail in areas like the stitching on the collar and cuffs would drop out.  Thankfully, through some trial and error, I worked it out.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Acrylic & Oil Portrait in The Works

I've done my first acrylic painting (it's the flowers and hummingbird picture somewhere on this blog), and found it hard to get nice blends.  Other painters I know said you can paint over acrylic with oils, (but you can't go acrylic over oils!). This is my first painting where I struck it in with acrylics and then ended doing a finish in oils.

I'm liking the speed I could do the blocking in and most of the detail.  It's nice to know I can always jump in with oils over the top and will probably work this way from now on. There's more to do but I  think this is promising.