Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Reflections by Alexa Blackman

 The first piece I did was a charcoal sketch of a still life Jesus, duck and lemon. It brought me out of my element because I normally don’t draw things in real life, just things from my imagination if anything. I liked taking my time with it and trying very hard to accurately represent the shadows and highlights throughout the piece. It did take a really long time and I didn’t feel as though I had much artistic freedom, so the next project I played around with a new style I’ve been developing. 

 The characters all have big eyes and ears and little button noses as a repeated design choice and I’ve been creating little ghouls and monsters to put in a comic idea I had. I take a lot of inspiration from a YouTuber called “LavenderTowne,” who draws similarly and I really aspire to. With each little monster, I plan to create the “normal” human version of them from an alternate universe. I’m doing all the concept designs for them on watercolor paper that’d been split into six, I draw with pencil first and go over it with ink. That part was also new to me, I’d never used the ink pot and pen before so it definitely took practice. Even now, I still end up with smears or ink droplets sometimes. Another place where I’m simultaneously struggling and improving in is through body shaped and forms, arms and hands are difficult for me to draw (especially in a style I’ve never used before) and I’ve saved some picture references on my phone to practice with.

 I’ve always liked to draw, but I’ve never tried to go anywhere with it, so I think this project may be a confidence booster or at least an emotional outlet. All of my characters are going to have a double in a parallel universe that is accessible through a puddle. If you’ve seen the pictures I take, they’re often from an ant’s point of view or playing with the reflections of a puddle because I just think they look so amazing and almost like an optical illusion. The story behind my idea is how different people can be, how they’ve got different sides they show to different people and some are good, and some not so much. Creating my own characters and story is finally giving myself some freedom in what I do, creating my own little world (or two) that came from my head and nowhere else.

   I partially wish I could make more characters because they’re so fun to draw, but as far as this project goes I don’t want to overwhelm myself, and should try to keep it to a minimum if I’m still getting comfortable in this style I’m trying out. I don’t think I ever imagined I’d enjoy drawing this much. Usually, I’m trying really hard to get it just right, but since I just tell myself they’re just concept designs I’m not as hard on the art and myself.

 I hope that I continue on this path and retain some kind of artistic ability through life. It would be cool to enter some pieces in a gallery when I’m older and see what other people think about my art, too. Maybe I’ll end up making webcomics, who can tell? Whatever I decide, I think I’ll always come to appreciate the art teachers I’ve had and the artistic friends that make me want to do really cool things like them!  

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