Todays practice began with a hand eye coordination warm up.
Two different hand poses at ten seconds, Thirty seconds, one minute and lastly 5 minutes.. each repeated twice. Then I did two, two minute long portraits, two five minute portraits and I finished off with one that was an hour long (I feel lucky for that!).
The goal is to hone in on the techniques I need to build to have strong observational skills. The shorter poses are about capturing the subject with little judgment, it is a practice in trusting your hand and eye to make the right choices without thought. I would say the same for the longer poses as well. The difference is that I spend the first half of the sketch on the structure so the last 20 minutes of the study is adding detail to the structure I established earlier on.
A look in the mirror
Anyway, I think it is important to learn to see yourself especially through self-analysis.. The self portrait is a beautiful way to spend time with yourself in a way you wouldn’t otherwise.. Im am 27 years old, I certainly am not a kid anymore, and it takes drawing myself to really kind of get to know myself as a man. I see a kid when I look in the mirror, I guess my goal of these studies is to look in the mirror and see myself for who I am now.. A man. I am trying to connect to myself as an adult, away from any expectations and projection on myself.
Intention is put into limiting distraction. I am very mindful of what music is playing, I turn my phone off. I am trying to spend the hour duration of the study really getting see myself for who I am. Emotions come to the surface that wouldn’t other wise, having separation from the hustle of the day really gives me a chance to connect disconnect from the 100’s of things distracting me at all times.. That is one thing I really notice when I do stuff like this. How much things like social media, messaging, Email, man even just seeing tens of thousands of images and hearing so many different sounds at once can really overwhelm and disarm your connection to self.
I am so used to being pulled in more direction then one that when I sit still and there is nothing to distract me I still feel a psychic chord pulling me away from myself.
A huge component to these studies is to connect to the things that have inspired me the most. It is a great pleasure to be able to go back and draw the things that have inspired me. In doing so I kind of relearn why I started drawing in the first place and it also just allows me to move forward in my own journey as an artist.. It is very important to pay homage to your Hero’s. I want to call back to them as much as I can.
So with all of that being said, I have been trying to figure out what one of the first things I saw that 1. made me want to draw and 2.influenced a sense of style. Video games have been a huge source of inspiration for me and there are many, but one that has really been sticking out to me is Yoshi’s island. I will elaborate on Why Yoshi’s Island has been such a big influence on me in a later post.
but for now I wanted to focus on what I ended up drawing, and that is the shy guy. The Shy guy is to Yoshi as the Goomba is to Mario.. He is the pawn enemy that’s pretty much disposable.. They are ambient little dudes that just kind of hang out in meadows until Yoshi comes along and eat’s them.. I just love how these dudes look and honestly I kinda relate to these socially awkward dudes just hiding behind a mask. I wanted to be one so bad.. Actually I don’t know if that’s true but I think they’re pretty cool.. So I just wanted to draw one.
The character design is pretty Genius in my opinion, they come in all different shapes color’s and sizes to fit whatever is going on in the level. It’s one of my favorite characters in a game, I especially love the Eye-less holes.
So lastly I decided to play through Yoshi’s Island again to kind of jog my memory. I forgot to mention this but It was one of the first games I played. My Nanna and I would play it whenever I would go visit her. I would just watch a lot of the time, and that is when I would draw. Shy guy’s, Yoshi’s, Baby Mario’s and many more characters filled those books. So I think that is why I am so drawn to Yoshi’s island. It feels really nice to go back.
Nintendo Voice Chat: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSoEXev206I
Did you know Gaming: Yoshi https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bXR-tr1et8U