Sunday, November 20, 2011

Time for my monthly blather!

It's gonna be a little bit of a rant, here, so be prepared or go do something else, if you're not feeling up to my yammering.

About my so-called art career...I feel like I'm between a rock and a hard place, or more accurately, swimming up-stream. Art is all I know how to do with any sort of expertise, and even that's a bit dubious. My dilemma is the whole freelance set-up. I'm not a commercial arts person; I draw and paint. I can't figure out how to make that pay off, w/o committing massive amounts of time to creating the quality of work that will make me proud and lead to bigger projects, and still earn a fair wage. Why won't anyone pay more than $100 for quality book covers or ccg cards? I don't get it. I mean, I DO get it: if you can wrangle a great image for peanuts, why not? But it bites me in the ass and kills my spirit.

I think maybe I'm just getting old and jaded and running out of steam. I'm becoming far less patient. This is my one life, yanno? Why can't I make myself happy? Part of it is certainly my husband's attitude. He asserts that art is decorative and subjective, therefore it's not serious. It's not important. It's not worth paying for. He doesn't see why I can't just get some office job for $15/hour tomorrow and earn my keep. (I know he wouldn't put it that way TO MY FACE, but I feel it.) He's not creative in the least, but he IS a very hard worker; he's a mechanical designer--heating, cooling, plumbing, that sort of thing. In fact, here it is, Sunday, and he's at work because we need the money. And I'm practicing my art and writing. Making not a dime.

Guilty conscience, thy name is Cris.

How do you guys make it work? How do you keep creative, whilst cranking out low-paying work subject to someone else's approval and still keep your spirits up? I need some virtual pick-me-upping, gang.

Monday, October 17, 2011

More Traditional Portraiture

The last of Team Free Will, or rather the actor that plays him. ;) It's fun to see them all together and extra special fun to work with traditional media. Once again, charcoal and white chalk on toned paper. Wee!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

September post!

Yay, autumn! The weather is turning cool, leaves slipping into Technicolor ochres and reds. I love Ohio. Oh, and have an art dump, babies! Yeah, yeah, still SPN junk but hey, that's where my head's at these days. There will be other projects in the offing because, well, nothing gold stays. And a girl's gotta earn her keep. *ahem* Anywho, el dumpo.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

More SPNishness!

It's rather befuddling to me how infatuated I became with this fandom. Why? God only knows, and He's not telling. Maybe I'll save this rumination for my writing blog. Annnnyway, more Supernatural fanart. Okay, so I can't sell it. But it has coaxed me into arting and writing far more passionately than I have in years. Again I say, befuddling.

There is a detail shot at my dA gallery:

Welcome back to school, kids!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Make a Wish...

Been a while since I updated diddly. I blame summer. And while I'm at it, I'll blame summer for this too:

Don't judge.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Here Comes the Sun, Doot'n Do Do...

Summer is right around the corner, thank gawd! LOVE the heat; I'd far sooner sweat than shiver. Makes me miss Florida. BUT! We'll be heading for the beach in early July, so I fully intend to soak up as much sun and sweat as possible, get sand in places sand was never meant to be, and drink copious amounts of fruited beer. And hopefully, get a little writing and doodling in.

And speaking of doodles, my Supernatural Summer gets a kick-off today. Here's a piece I posted all over DA and LJ, so I figure I'll slap it here too. I tried to be more stylized, less literal. Gotta work on that, honestly. Anywho, enjoy, my babies...paint on!

(For attribution--the lovely monicawoe--and other versions of this image, check out my LJ Supernatural SummerShack: )

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Conglomeration Nation!

I almost forgot about this poor thing! *pets blog*

Haven't been doing much lately except catching up with old client projects but I certainly hope this changes soon.

First con of the season! Con, being CONvention...Conglomeration, specifically. ( If you're in the Louisville, KY area this upcoming weekend, stop by! It's seriously inexpensive and low-key, with a little art, a little gaming, a little larping, and shopping. Something for everyone! It always re-energizes me, this wee con.

Okay, off to oggle my prints (courtesy of Ellen Million Graphics) and decide what to frame. Ta!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

In praise of giving the Muse full run of the house...

First, my latest bit of Art For Me. Doesn't happen often enough, truly.

(For the full 411, you can read all about it on my DA page.

This was interesting for me on about 19 different fronts. I haven't felt truly joyful doing art in a loooong time. Why? Because it hasn't been my own passion, my own baby. It's been someone else's. You never love someone else's kid as much as your own, right? Art is a conundrum. You get into it to bring your own visions to life, but we all want to get paid to do what we're good at. It's a love/hate relationship. I think I need a little more 'love' in my life.

This was also a tasty opportunity to explore a style/technique I haven't used before, and it was AWE.SOME. I've always loved Drew Struzan's movie posters. He works traditionally but with some cagey PS brushes, I aped his style to decent effect. I'm gonna work this way more often. It was a stone blast, but I never would've tried it had I not been working on my own project.

Most clients don't want Something New. They want More Of The Same. Hate to say it, but it's true. Now, this isn't a bad thing, per se! You know you're doing something right if lots of folks request it, know where I'm going with this. An artist stagnates if he does the same thing, over and over and over. He becomes something of an artisan. Bob Ross-ish. Formulaic. A charicature of himself. Static. And stasis is one step away from atrophy. (The previous statement was brought to you by Arrogant Artist Is Arrogant. Feel free to ignore at your own druthers.)

I make the bulk of my money these days at my dayjob, not to mention I get bennies that insure me and my fam. Freelancing is woefully underfunding me. I'm 46. It's time to pursue my own creative yakkity-smack because if not now, when? I know, I know. I've said it all before. It just takes me a loooong time to commit to putting my money where my mouth is. But now is the day. I feel brave and stupid, all at once. Welcome to my world...

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Eeesh, falling behind... my bloggery! January is finding me very busy, with older projects, new ones popping up, and personal pieces screaming to find release. I should be a very wealthy woman, for all the work on my plate. But that just isn't the way, for us creatives, is it? Sad but true.

Despite my lack of posts, I have been working. Proof, you say? Here are a few digitally painted images that have made it through the bowels of my imagination to 'publication' (many other covers were photomanips but that's not really what this blog is about.)


But wait! There's more!

And another detail:

Looking back at these, I find the experience a blend of "Hey, aspects of these paintings are pretty darned cool!" and "Ugh, Christine, you're such a hack." (But there again, isn't this just the way with us creative types? Annnnyway, back to my self-loathing...) There's this easy, air-brushed banality to my recent paintings that has left me a bit, well, empty. Okay, a LOT empty. Everything has become over-simplified and buffed to appeal to the idealization of the romance/erotic genre. I remember, back in early college, I used to pause by ramshackle abandoned buildings and marvel at their texture, their complexity, their ennui. I love things in distress. The more holey and faded my jeans, the better I like 'em. (Same goes for my men, but that's a tale for another time. Heh.) I don't want my world shiny and new! I want grit and nuance and dark-underbellies. I live in Suburbia; I get White Picket Fence every stinkin' day. But it's not where my muse lies; it's where practicality dwells. (I should give my muse a name someday, as much as I refer to him. Yeah, I've decided it's a 'him'.)

Okay, enough yakkity. Got work to do. But if it's any consolation, I appreciate you being here to share my woe, dear reader! Since you've made it this far, you deserve my sincerest, heartfelt commiseration. And distress.