Drawn: ‘Death Is Not The End’

DeathIsNotTheEnd_3

Happy Easter!

Here in Australia we celebrated Easter over the weekend. Though it’s a time that some people like to associate with chocolate eggs (and who doesn’t love chocolate eggs! :)) and rabbits, some people also like to spend this time of year remembering how Jesus died and came back to life again.

I wanted to share with you a postcard design I did last year during Easter. The brief was to create a design around the phrase “Death is not the end”. As I wanted this phrase to reflect how Jesus died I turned the “T” into a cross – which is what Jesus was killed on. But I also wanted the design to reflect how Jesus came back to life I turned the “ND” of “end” into pictures of an open tomb – which represent Jesus’ empty grave (empty because he was no longer dead!).

It took a few attempts to get the design correct on paper but eventually I ended up with the sketch below:

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I scanned this sketch and using Photoshop, I coloured it and ended up placing it over a picture I shot when I was in Cambodia.

The picture was taken at Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, where many Cambodians died horrific deaths during the Cambodian Genocide. It was a picture of a place which represented, for me, how devastatingly painful, final and hopeless death can seem.

The phrase ‘Death is not the end’ however, represents the hope we can have in Jesus. Jesus died so that we have hope of a new life after death (which you can read more about HERE !). Death does not have to be final and hopeless!

But back to the design – I was and still am pretty pleased with how it turned out!

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Thank you for letting me share with you another piece of my artwork!

I hope you have a great week! x

 

Drawn: Monkey King

Monkey King

 

Happy Chinese New Year!

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything to do with drawing – but I thought I’d share with you a monkey I illustrated recently.

About a month or two ago I was asked to draw the ‘Monkey King’ from a classical Chinese novel called ‘Journey to the West’. I had never heard of this story (and still don’t know much about it!) but illustrated my own version of the ‘Monkey King’ after seeing how other artists had illustrated him.

Unfortunately this illustration didn’t end up being used for the project it was intended for – so here it is on my blog – just so it doesn’t remain forever in the archives of my computer!

Drawn: Tools of an Amateur Floral Artist

Floral Art Watercolour

Way back in September when I renamed this blog “Drawn and Hooked” I promised that this blog would be a mix of my illustration and crochet – – only to still neglect my drawing (online at least). So here’s to putting my illustrating tardiness behind me – presenting, a little illustration I did earlier this week!

I drew this piece with an Artline Drawing System 0.3 pen and coloured it with Derwent Watercolour Pencils. The colours have been distorted a little through scanning and adjustments (something I need to work on!). I haven’t done much pen outline/watercoloured drawings – this illustration is not so much a reflection of my usual work but more so an experiment of mediums I’ve been meaning to experiment more with lately.

So why the flowers? Why the dustpan . . . and what is that green block? For this week’s illustration I thought I’d draw on (see the pun!) items from a new and recent hobby of mine – flower arranging!

About a month ago, a friend of mine asked me if I wanted to join her in signing up for a beginner Floral Art Class at our local community college. Without much hesitation I did – and now, almost half way through our “term” there have been no regrets.

On a weekly basis we now wrangle leafy branches of vibernum odoratissimum, wire Geberas with our fingers. crunch stems of  Lisianthus with our secateurs and press them firmly into floral foam (that’s the green block!).  It’s a fun yet challenging skill to be learning – I’m looking forward to when I can start putting my new skills to use for events like birthdays!

So, I hope you’ve enjoyed my first “drawn” post, as well as hearing a little about my newest hobby. What are your hobbies? How did you come across them?

Please Vote: Mario the Italian Chef Cat

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Meet Mario the Italian Chef Cat – my entry in the Amigurumi Patterns’ Design Contest! I’m sorry that lately my posts have been competition related – I promise that it will be the last for some time. However, if you would be so kind as to spare a moment or so by clicking HERE, and voting for Mario I would be ever so grateful! Thank you in advance.

I thought in this post I’d also share a bit of my process in putting together Mario. When I watch animations, I’m always interested in the nerdy commentaries about the production… so I hope you find this brief “behind the scenes” of my pattern making somewhat interesting!

When I first heard about the Amigurumi Patterns’ Design Contest I was still in a holiday withdrawal kind of phase. So when I discovered the theme for the contest was “Animals at Work” my inspiration, naturally, was drawn from my travels. In Italy, Greece and Turkey I had encountered a LOT of stray cats. (The picture below is a cat eating a cupcake in Ephesus.) Therefore I decided I would create an amigurumi cat.

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As for my cat’s occupation – because I had loved so much of the food I had eaten, I decided that my cat would be a chef (so I would have an excuse to crochet little foods too… haha). Mario’s name came from this bit of graffiti I found carved into a train in Rome.

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As Italy has a lot of iconic meals, I decided that my little chef Cat would be an exclusively Italian Chef. That set, I went about sketching Mario’s “look”. (Yay! Finally! Some illustration in my posts!)

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As you can see, my sketch of Mario, compared to his finish self only changed a little. I omitted Mario’s moustache as I felt it was a bit distracting to his face. I also omitted his apron as I ran out of time. Despite this, I was still happy with how Mario turned out.

To give Mario a bit more character I alternated between a dark brown yarn and the multi coloured yarn to give him distinct markings – such as a patch around his eye and an odd coloured ear. I also applied this technique to his tail.

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I had a lot of fun too crocheting Mario’s little foods – a pot of pasta, a pizza and a tomato. I also (crazily) built Mario’s little table out of balsa wood which I then painted (yes, I was the crazy one painting a miniature table at 10pm even though I had to wake up at 5:30am the next morning…). The backgrounds were some pictures I printed then arranged to create a small makeshift ‘scene’ for Mario to be photographed in… quite a bit of effort… but I felt that having put effort into every other part of the project it only made sense to finish it with equal dedication!

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Even if Mario doesn’t win any prizes, I enjoyed the experience of designing and creating him. Using techniques like joining his legs and body as one piece and interchanging yarns to create an eye patch challenged my crocheting skills. It was also pretty cool to translate a idea and sketch into something tangible! I hope to do more of this in the future.

When/If you create your own amigurumi patterns, how do you go about your design/creating process? Do you start with a sketch or do you crochet and see what happens?

I hope you enjoyed this little insight into how Mario the Italian Chef Cat came together. Please do vote for him if you haven’t already via the link at the beginning of this post. Many thanks! 🙂

I’m renaming the blog!

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Can you believe it’s September already? Here in Australia we’re heading into Spring. The weather is warming slowly but surely. The magnolia tree outside my window is no longer a bare skeletal network of branches but an increasingly thick array of fresh, pale green leaves. It’s exciting.

What’s also exciting is the fact that it’s been almost a year since I’ve restarted this blog. This actual blog is almost 4 years old (having started in December 2009) but it has only really come to life in the last 12 months. Only in the last 12 months have I actually stuck with it. Only in the last 12 months has it started becoming part of an online community.

Back in 2008 I finished my Bachelor of Digital Media degree at the College of Fine Arts (UNSW). I had plans to become a 2D Animator. But for various reasons that dream never quite materialised. Facing failure left me feeling defeated, but in late 2009 I started to find my feet again and started this blog as a means of keeping track of and sharing my creative work. Though for many of those years, my progress was somewhat sporadic, over the last year (having discovered people are actually reading my blog!) I’ve been inspired to blog more regularly.

As I’ve blogged and been creative on a more consistent basis, I’ve discovered where my passions lie – in crochet and illustration. While my illustration is not something I have shared much of in the last year, it is something I’ve been working on away from the blog and am looking to share more on the blog in the future. Challenging myself to post my finished crochet projects online has done wonders for my crochet skills – so I’m hoping that doing the same with my illustration will also help me as an artist.

So… because of all this I’ve decided to rename my blog “Drawn and Hooked”! When I had started this blog as a means of representing myself as just an artist, it made sense to name it after myself. But now that my interests have changed and developed, it seems more appropriate to give it a name reflecting these interests instead. The URL will stay the same though, so there is no need to change your bookmarks if you have bookmarked this blog.

Thank you to everyone who has read my blog so far – its been a real encouragement to me to know that people read about what I am doing and that I’m not writing and posting to nothingness! Here’s to more years of blogging! 🙂

A + O

Whilst I haven’t been drawing anywhere near as much as I should be, one recent project I have ‘contributed’ to recently is the wedding invitation of my friends Angela and Owen!

The talented Victoria Garcia illustrated the flowers in the upper half of the invite whist I illustrated the rustic nest of branches and ribbon below.

It was a little tricky but worthwhile working out the arrangement of the branches – as they had to conceal a “secret” message. As a flat piece of paper, the branches framed a sweet little recount of the proposal – but folded…

…they transformed the flowers into a bouquet (and the words spelled out another message!).

It was an honour to be able to help out with the invitation, especially for a couple as lovely as Angela and Owen. I can’t wait for the wedding! 🙂

Winter Wedding Part 2

On the 24th July, 2010 my friends Arlene & Michael were married at the Garrison Church in Millers Point, Sydney. The flowers I painted for them featured on the Order of Service, a lovely little book with pages sewn in with thread.

This has nothing to do with my work, but I love how the Harbour Bridge just rises out of the end of Lower Fort St when viewed from the Garrison.

At the Reception, the invitation design featured again to mark table numbers.

And on each table, for each guest as a gift from the Bride and Groom were (and what I enjoyed designing/illustrating most for the wedding!)
cook books – a compilation of recipes from selected family and friends.

It even included a recipe for the actual Wedding Cake (which was made by one of the Bride’s friends)! Below is my drawing . . .

And the real thing!

It was a lovely wedding. And a week later I received this too.

Congratulations Arlene and Michael! And thank you again for letting me be a part of your special day!

Detours

So I resurrected the paint bucket. I know, I know . . the shame! In my defense, it’s because of time restraints. I think the drawing still holds up even though the paint job is weak. This illustration is for a short virtual picture book. I’m not quite sure what that will look like . . I guess I’ll let you know when I do!

Time is a scarcity now. Since I last posted, I’ve taken on Full Time work. Alas, it’s in retail and reactions to the news of my job have ranged from “Congratulations!” to “What happened to your dreams? Have you gone soft?”. Well, yes, it’s a detour. But I haven’t gone soft. This is not the end.