Thursday, July 30, 2009

Harbourfront Centre Glass studio revisited…

As the title implies, I returned to the glass studio in the Harbourfront Centre, where I had done a previous sketch of Nico and Rachel. However, this time I was able to sketch on the studio floor… a bit closer to the action.

Before I venture any further, I'd like to thank Aaron, Benjamin, Will and Christine for being so generous with their time and allowing me to ask them questions... So, thanks guys, I had a blast hanging out in your crib today!

So the drawing is of Aaron, the person shaping the glass and his assistant Will. Aaron's path to glass blowing, like the other glass blowers I've met, seems to have been along a circuitous route. Aaron told me that he was in training to be a commercial pilot, but after a few glass blowing seminars, he decided glass was something that suited his temperament better. Shortly after that he enrolled in Sheridan College Glass blowing program and graduated 2 years ago... good luck with your career and I'm sure you'll be a success, Aaron!

(Aaron, if you have a website and would like your name to be a link to it, send it my way)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sketchbook 29/07/09

I ventured back to the St.Lawrence Market to get another round of sketching in and I chose this staircase area mainly because it had available seating by the railing. However, after finishing this drawing, I remembered my sister telling me how she went on a ghost tour a few years back during halloween in which they visited famous downtown sites that were supposedly haunted.
As the story goes, the guide took them to the Market, and lead them to a pit stop in the basement via one of these flights of stairs (there are 4 and this image is of the south west one) As my sister went down, her vision got blurry and she felt a brief chill run through her.
After the pit stop, the guide asked everyone in the group if they felt anything weird as they went down the stairs. My sister didn't raise her hand but another girl did and mentioned the exact same feelings my sister experienced. The guide informed her that that was a ghost passing through her... wowzer! What a great way to start a ghost tour.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sketchbook 28/07/09

I tried using a new pen, the Micron brush. Not too sure how I feel about it, but it certainly elicited a quicker and looser drawing style while I was doing this image. A total departure from my more tighter, more accurate drawings.

This whole process of drawing with a new pen, brought to mind my ex's father who hated olives. He decided one day to like olives, so he carried a container of olives with him all day and just snacked on them. By the end of day, he liked them.

I think I'll keep on going with this brush pen and see where it takes me.

My first commission

"This must be what your first smack high feels like." Josh Lyman, West Wing TV show.
That pretty much sums up what I felt when I gave my client this image and he paid me... did I just say,"pay me??!" I'm still slightly gob smacked that someone wanted to pay money for an image that I did… especially an image of my sister's living room… go figure.
It's an image I had done earlier in my sketchbook, but this time it was done on a larger sheet of paper.
Also, I'd also like to thank Gary Keimig for his advice on how to price an image… so, thanks, Gary.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Sketchbook 27/07/09

The Linda Lou. A mega yacht from the Cayman Islands. My intention was to sketch something else entirely today, but on my way there, I spotted this Goliath. Now who could turn down sketching a "mega yacht" (This is what one of the crew hands called this boat). While I was sketching this really glamorous woman entered and exited the boat twice. On her second return trip she was carrying a large shopping bag. I hope they didn't come all the way to Toronto just for the shopping! But if you could afford a yacht this size, heck! why not travel to another country just for the shopping!

Sketchbook 27/07/09

Another dreary, wet day in Toronto which means I didn't have any desire to leave my apartment to sketch. So whenever I'm in this situation, I sketch my kitchen.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sketchbook 22/07/09

I had a hankering for a tofu bun today, so whenever I do I head over to the Yung Sing Pastry Shop on Baldwin Street.

I was informed by a resident of the area that this shop has been here for 41 years… yes, you heard it right... 41 years! So I can vouch for you that they know how to do a tofu bun right, as well as har gow, sesame seed buns, woo gok and countless other treats.

The same man, who's lived in this area for his entire life said that this area was originally a ghetto with a large Jewish population which slowly evolved into a hippie haven, mainly from the American draft dodgers in the 70's. It was at this time that the Pastry shop opened up along side the second hand clothing shops.

Slowly the second hand shops were taken over by restaurants and that's how these two blocks of Baldwin Street looks presently.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sketchbook 21/07/09

My daily wandering took me down to the St. Lawrence Market where I knew a plethora of situations would present themselves to me to sketch.

The St.Lawrence is a big barn of a structure that houses independent vendors of all stripes, from fruit sellers to seafood purveyors to cheese vendors. The list is endless, as well as the opportunities to sketch.

So I settled for the Anton Kozlik Mustard shop. They've been in business since 1948, so I suspect their product "cuts the mustard". (OUCH! yes, I did throw that one out there, but fathers the world over will appreciate that joke!) The lady in the drawing, according to Jessica, a talented illustration student at OCAD as well as counter help, informed me that she's the cousin of Anton who continues the family tradition of mustard making. (If you're ever int he neighbourhood, try the samples set on the counter, in particular the horse radish mustard... tongue numbingly hot, but ohhh so worth it.)

I didn't finish colouring the image because I was sitting directly under the cold vent exhaust of a meat locker... there's only so much I will do for my art.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Sketchbook 20/07/09

I went to Cumberland Park today, located in the Yorkville area of the city. A very posh neighbourhood that's frequented by the stars when the Toronto film festival is going on.

I've digressed. The Cumberland park was designed in 1993 by Martha Schwartz, an American landscape designer, who's concept for this unusually long and narrow park was chosen from a short list of 4 design proposals, I believe. Her concept was to represent each major geographical region of Canada through narrow strips of land. The image above is the part representing the Canadian Shield. At the time of construction, there was a massive controversy about the rock, specifically the price that it took to purchase it. However, as you could see, with the passage of years, that memory has faded and it's been known to be a great perch for sleeping, eating meals, climbing or just people watching.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sketchbook 19/07/09

Today I ventured down to the Harbourfront Centre and found Nico and Rachel, two glass artists, creating a piece, in the open air glass studio. It was a treat watching the two work and at some points, the "dance" happened, where one stepped wordlessly around the other and vice a aversa. It was quite hypnotic at times but the heat soon snapped me back to reality. I sketched as quick as I could and added the colour and lettering outside to escape the heat. In this image Rachel is slowly blowing the glass as Nico slowly rolls and shapes the piece.

Well done Nico and Rachel!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Random Thoughts…

These are spreads that either have been produced over a series of days with really no point to them or at the time of initial production, I didn't think they were up to snuff to the other spreads that I've posted… but upon review after many days, I've changed my mind about them.

Sketchbook 17/07/09

A high of 20°C, chance of a thunderstorm and an 86% humidity index.

Sketchbook 16/07/09

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sketchbook 12/07/09

This was a grage that faced the Trinity Bellwoods park. So old and falling apart, I wanted to capture it, but the somehow it got lost in translation when i was drawing it.

Also I wanted to capture some other garages as well but I misjudged the scale of my drawing right form the get go. Will have to work on visualizing the finished drawing on future images.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Sketchbook 11/07/09

While sketching this two images, there seemed to be a gaggle of wedding parties jockeying to get to the prime wedding photo locales.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Sketchbook-- back and forth

Here's a drawing I completed over two separate days. I really couldn't figure out how to draw the canopy when I initially drew the trunk. So, I let it stew over the weekend and came back to it today.

Sketchbook 3-5/07/09

I was house sitting for my sister and her husband over the weekend and it was an opportunity for me to experince a bit of suburbia. They live in a town called, Milton which is about a 40 minute drive from my place. Unfortunately (or fortunately), I don't have a car, so Adam had to pick me up from the most westerly subway stop on the Bloor line. The image above is the exit to the "kiss and ride" pickup spot.

The backyard to Adam and Zerlina's place. The sun was strong and I really liked the shadow that the planter cast on the fence.

This was a drawing I did before the weekend in a coffee shop. I witnessed the sky turn from a brilliant blue to stormy shades of gray. Quite amazing