Propagate – Illustration Friday #4 – EFII

Illustration Friday - Propagate

Troublesome road, as well as a long, eventful one.

This is my last entry for Escape From Illustration Island‘s Illustration Friday contest.  The topic made me think of nature, at first, but I had this robot heart idea in my head, and adapted the concept (Propagate). I decided not to make this a “deadline rush” type experiment because the last one taught me that one has to estimate well how long it will take to finish a piece based on its complexity, and number of definite elements. I started a couple of days early. Alas, events conspired, including software/tablet problems, as well as hardware failure. I almost lost the work two times, if it were not for some saved files I had managed to copy. At the last moment, I had about 2 hours to go, and decided not to keep battling the machine.

I switched to the analog approach, which turned out to be fun, using a set of Faber-Castel PITT pen brushes my wife had gifted me recently. Love the feel of the line produced, and I still can’t get over how fast India ink dries. Very enjoyable experience. After the linework was in, I scanned the piece, and proceeded to color using GIMP on a netbook (although a bit slow, it behaved well consistently).

I wanted to do this with time, and really explore the use of the tablet some more, but software freezing up, and other computer trouble, forced me to go “analog”. This turned out to be great! Never ever should any artist rely solely on machines as art tools. That was the big lesson this time. And the experiment was more of an exercise in quick decisions in the end.  I still want to draw a big old robot heart, and get precious with it.

Lots of hatching attempts. I know I need to learn the basic technique. I’m sure those lines are not all facing the right way. Forget about minding light and shade. And colors? never mind about that… I had to use a mouse!

Next, I’ll try to incorporate the pen brushes because they were so much fun. The other big thing out of this experiment was the realization that my hardware is outdated, although I still believe in squeezing all the value you can out of what you have. And I did!

The biggest lesson for me here was really not to rely too heavily on technology to create art. Content saw me through this time. And as much as one likes to get precious with something, there is great value on ditching old precious. It is better to have a finished piece now, where folks can see it, comment, and enjoy, than it is to have something halfway done, waiting for its time to be seen.

I hope you like it.

Thanks for visiting, and please don’t be shy… post me a comment if you are so inclined.

Have a great art time, and never stop because of technology woes!

Published in: on February 26, 2010 at 12:21 am  Comments (7)  

7 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I like the idea of spreading love!

    • I knew you’d like the hearts!
      I may continue submitting to Illustration Friday… it is great art exercise!
      (Love your submission as well)

  2. A most original take on the subject! Makes me think of the cyber community and the propagation of thoughts & feelings out here on the web. Nice job Jose!

    • You bet Sam. That was just the thought when the idea visuals finally gelled together in my mind.
      Feeling the inspiration from all my artists friends, and the community that has been building up since the start of my art journey.

  3. It is an original take, but I don’t get it. Sorry.

    • I believe he meant “take” as an slightly uncommon interpretation of the subject “to propagate”, as Illustration Friday proposes weekly, Rene. Lucky to be thought as an original idea in comparison to most submissions to this week’s topic.
      My main fun doing this? Using brush pens is extremely enjoyable!

  4. A good friend of mine thought this would be priceless as a desktop background. Now, that’s a good idea. Something I didn’t think about. Wouldn’t you feel honored if someone put your images on their computers? I believe I will re-color this as an exercise with that goal.

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