Thursday, December 4, 2008



Some illustrator toying around. Used feathers for texture on photoshop.

Rants and loose ends

We live in strange, heavy times. Very strange, very heavy times.

Our culture is reaching a surreal transformation. The population is split in two over gay rights, which is ridiculous considering we maintain the rhetoric of 'equality for everyone'. Once we finally accept gays, what'll be the next target? There will always be another target.

Equal opportunity, right. Mexicans and other latin american immigrants are treated worse than dirt by employers and the community at large. Its kind of disgusting, because it doesn't nearly receive the same amount of attention as the gay rights movement. There's always another group.

I feel like computers are dumbing down the college educated. How many people use Wikipedia as a clean source of information? Why do we anyways? Well, its easy. People like easy. Because its quick. Quick is good.

Bringing me to another point - teachers are too relaxed with students. I feel that teachers should be more strict, harsh, mean, and to the point. Because there is such an increase in the 'lazy' generation, lazy because we are the first generation bred by the mass-market of household computers. We expect it easy, and weirdly enough, we get it easy.

Overpopulation is repulsive, and it just keeps getting worse. The planet is wrecking havoc. My friend said it best 'This planet is having a really hard time dealing with so many freaking people destroying the earth's skin. Why don't people see it? The world is trying to keep our numbers in check. You can't fight nature. Nature will always win'. This is true, dude.

First black president, racism will still exist but with such a positive black role model maybe the very foundations of racism will finally shake to its core.

Sexism, however, is a different story. It seems that America is one of the most sexist western nations I've ever studied. It is indirect, which makes it further problematic. Turn on the TV, all cleaning-product and domestic commercials always have a woman, whereas food commercials and technological commercials focus on men. The news is even harder to watch, all of the reporters are young, beautiful, thin women whereas the male reports are allowed to age. They are, in some ways, more realistic. Women are not one dimensional, and I'm getting tired that the nation keeps buying the sexist product.

Just a rant.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Water Chandelier

This was the result of 3+ weeks of work.


To me, he looks more like a gallery installation then a chandelier meant for dinnerware, but I'm pleased with how he turned out. Our group worked incredibly hard and spent a lot of hours piecing the bottle together. Thankfully it is done for Project Water!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Bitch Magazine Intern app

Bitch Magazine was recently seeking an intern.

I may not be as experienced with illustration and InDesign (I actually only just have worked with them in class since... early October), I decided to give the application a shot.

Whether or not I get called back (chances are slim considering my lack of experience), the project was fun and I learned a few things.

I decided to design my own Bitch magazine and mailed in the application.

For the cover, I got my friends to do a fashion shoot with me where I had them pose in different directions.

After that, I brought it back hope and upped the levels, brightness, and crispness of the picture on photoshop. I also manipulated the colors so I had a nice relationship between warm and cool, Reds and Greens.

I proceeded to work with illustrator using the image as the cover. I couldn't find the Bitch Magazine's font, so I manipulated the font that was closest to it so it looked similar.

And there you have it. :)

Photoshop Portrait

Photoshop Portrait progress from Art with Luke, 120.

First, I clicked a quick picture of myself on my computer's webcam in my kitchen.

Then, I proceeded to create multiple layers on Photoshop, using my picture as the background template. For my hair, I googled multiple images of Ocean waves. And for my skin, I chose to use a surf beach.
These two images were the main clips for the pic.

By bumping up the resolution to 300 dpi, it made the images incredibly pixalated but by using layers of pictures with larger resolution, I was able to blend the collage in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

I used the following tools and blending procedures:
Level adjustments
Burn (layer)
Hard Light (layer)
Soft Light (Layer)
Contrast/Brightness adjustments
Color level adjustments
Smudge tool

The most fun I had with this project was clipping out various waves and fitting them like a puzzle into my picture. For my eye, I used an aquamarine. For my shirt, I used orange coral. For the frame, I used coral (for pattern reasons), and the Beta I found online.

Combining these principles, I decided to put a play on a famous painting - This is not a pipe.

The text, visuals, layers, images, splicing, and pictures all combined created this final piece.

The Beauty of Youth

Beauty of Youth.

Beauty has as many meanings as man has moods.
Beauty is the symbol of symbols.
Beauty reveals everything, because it expresses nothing.
When it shows us itself, it shows us the whole fiery-colored world. - Oscar Wilde on Beauty

Here are the illustrations I did for our Beauty of Youth book in Design with Luke - Art 118.

I combined a magazine advertisement with an illustration I did of a nude woman wearing the chador. Despite faith, religion, personal decision, privacy, etc. we are all sexual beings - even those who appear chaste or modest. We are all sexual beings. The modern, western conventions of beauty and youth can be quickly dismissed by other cultures.

We talked about Oscar Wilde's use of nature when he talked about beauty, so I decided to expand upon nature's relationship with the universe, and our relationship with both. Beautiful universe. Combined a magazine with pen-color illustrations, and chalk-jellyfish.

Che Whatever. A bloody revolutionary. Youth and Beauty is worshipped, even when corrupt. Its a major piece of inspiration. A picture also seems to capture the moment, and its something difficult to forget - even when the figure is replaced by someone else. In many ways, I think it still evokes the same familiar feelings.

A more conventional image of beauty and youth by contrasting a grandmother with her granddaughter.

Dreams. Reflections. Aspirations. Want. Aspects of what makes something beautiful and youthful. The defining principle of these characteristics seems to be one thing - Desire.

Self Portrait. My relationship with youth and beauty is that I can create it if I so choose to. What I see as beautiful and youthful is captured by my pen. So I drew myself as what I perceived to be beauty and youth. Artists have a history of immortalizing themselves as young and beautiful when they are in fact quite old and decrepit.

With every life, another passes away, persistently reminding us that youth and beauty is a fleeting principle. The people that pass away can often tie us to their memories, and the people that we love are often tied as well.


Creation and abstraction. Nature synthesized with humanity.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

This isn't an update about art, but about politics.

To think that in barely 11 days, I may see a "black man" become president of the united states is truly and absolutely amazing. I really do love my country. Only 40 years ago, Civil rights ravaged this place, and in only 11 days civil rights helped usher in a man to become a defining president.

I am tremendously excited and in awe that I get to be 22 when I see this day.

I can only pray.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Week 3 Wednesday Abstract Art

Last time to do three posters! Woohoo. I'm going to rest easy for a while so I can focus on larger projects. I look forward to the upcoming Oscar Wilde book. I'm very excited about illustrating.

Anyways, here are the last two posters.

I decided to take what we learned about design, space, color, and text and try to apply those elements into my usual style of art. That and I was tired of investigating. I just wanted to draw for fun.

This is actually cut out like a comic chat-box, you can see the faint outline. I took the idea from the last drawing I did and implemented it into this. I'll probably keep experimenting with the speech-box and pile of letters. I love the idea and I'm not entirely satisfied with projecting it yet.


And I leave you with an illustration by my boyfriend. I feel like this right now.

But heeey! Weekend time! I'm going to rest! YAH!!!!!

Week 2 Wednesday Abstract Art

Here's the series from Week 2, Wednesday.

I decided to continue my study of Renaissance and Baroque art by reinterpreting them into a modern context.

This is Artemisia Gentileschi's "Judith slaying Holofernes", one of my favorite paintings.

I picked up some guache and reduced the complex color scheme to four and highlights.

They look like legos murdering someone.

After that, I continued my study of space using as minimum color and shape as I could get by with.

Week 3 Monday abstract art

Late entry, I know. And out of order, as I have not yet posted Week 2 Wednesday's illustrations.

These are the art pieces I did for Week 3, Monday's abstract art.

Luke asked the class to work with four colors and text. For this piece, I sort of just messed around drawing letters into a massive monster.

I find him cute.

The next piece I don't particularly care for. I went into Illustrator and created a few snowflakes out of the letter J.

Its kind of pretty on the computer screen. It prints terribly, however.

For the last piece, I loved the concept of drawing someone who happens to be talking far too much.

Luke suggested she lost her power when her eyes were closed. Here was the experiment.

All of these illustrations were done on the computer. I prefer working traditionally, but I was willing to give myself a challenge this week around.

Final FINAL poster for Bertus 120

my eyeballs hurt from staring at a computer for the last 5+ hours.

So, in order to work with the moustache wallpaper, I needed to hand draw a couch and livetrace it into an illustration on adobe illustration.

After that, I had to work with the text. Luke began to show me the ways he wanted me to play with it, and put some text on the couch. He also warned me about my white space. So I began to work with those perimeters and finished my final poster.

All in all, I'm glad to be done with this project. My brain hurts.

Final Poster

Oh lord. This took a lot of work and conception to do.

So, I took the Moustache wallpaper and put it into a poster.

Were it up to me and I had to design the poster personally, I would not use the wallpaper I made. But, I tried my best to make it work within the time crunch.

Most of this was hand drawn in order to meet the aesthetic quality of the wallpaper. I colored it using photoshop, but fitted it with Illustrator. Text is also by illustrator as are sizings, shapes, etc.

I'm glad to be done with this project.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I'll update with more goodies later. I'm very head high from homework.

Wallpaper and moustaches.

It was something more playful. I think it'd make for lovely wrapping paper.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Assignment 2

The other day I was thinking about Art History after I finalized my Judith slaying Holofernes paper for the art committee review.

I decided to take famous pieces of art and try to simplify them into shapes, colors and compositions. I started with a quick Da Vinci study.

The idea I had was that this painting is so familiar to people, so ingrained that you would be able to recognize it using only shape and dominating colors, not necessarily finer details/features.

I didn't bother looking at the original painting while I was working on my interpretation. I figured that by doing so I'd be defeating the purpose of my own devices - We remember a specific painting based on shape and color. It wouldn't do to compare what I was working on with Da Vinci until the final product.

This is the finished piece after critique today. The green really brings out the figures. The black background didn't work insomuch the way Da Vinci's does, because I did not use highlights or shades with my shape. So another color is necessary.

Next, I moved onto Van Gogh / Picasso.

I have always been fascinated by Van Gogh's brush strokes, but never have I ever noticed the way Picasso uses invisible shapes, lines, and directions to create a visually complicated and yet excessively simple image. Like the Da Vinci image, after I gathered my sources, I refused to look at either painting as I worked on the piece.

I combined Gogh's brush strokes and Picasso's shapes. I also used Gogh's love for bright contrasting colors. After I finished it, I never had a chance to look at Gogh or Picasso's piece in comparison to mine since I was tired and needed sleep.

I don't know why, but earlier today I was unsatisfied so I tried to make the image my own. Probably because I felt like I was cheating the original composition. That and I wanted to experiment.

Its not nearly as strong as the former and too all over the place. For that, I prefer the former.

For my final piece, I decided to take my personal studies and apply them to an original work. The Vanguard recently had me illustrate the construction of PSU's new Recreational center. So I took the rough sketches and final inks from that picture, and reinterpreted them based on their structure. I chose to use color in my own way, borrowing the scheme from the Da Vinci picture.

I loathed the triangles, so I removed them and heightened the color levels.

It still feels so damn incomplete to me. I don't feel satisfied at all. Probably because I'm not used to working in a simple way. But it is a challenge, and I do enjoy tackling challenges.

Next, I may continue to do studies based on Art History so I have a stronger foundation for composition and how it applies to abstract. My final challenge will be to free hand something without using reference.

Well. Here we go!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Snails and Economy

Financial crisis.


Posters Process

My website's been properly updated with pictures, contacts, and a link to this blog. I'm glad I'm done sweating over its design so I can just chill and read books as part of my study shindig.

Taking a cue from one of the awesome folks in class, here was the process of my last three posters from the 10.01.08 design class.

The first drawing started as a quick airplane sketch about three weeks ago, when I went to Colorado to attend my Grandpa's 80th.

I started toying with the design and altered it overall, going for an Art Nouveau / Alphonse Mucha look last Monday.

While it doesn't show very well scanned, the speech bubble is cut completely out so when you hang it on the wall, you see the wall peaking through the hole. So she literally has nothing to say.

I didn't like it totally, and the critique today helped me realize why it wasn't very strong. The upper hair tendrils guide the eye off the page, so its a bit of a distraction.

I took it under photoshop and edited it a bit. I got rid of her upper hair trails, so it helps keep the eye more involved with the picture.

The second image, I'm especially proud of. I took an old unfinished inking of mine from two years ago and completed it into its final form.

The cacti's name is Senorita.

There's a story involving the cacti :: My boyfriend and I went camping this summer and came across two cacti in Fred Meyer's. He named his Jerome and I named mine Lola. They had a lovely relationship. Jerome was three years old, a Pisces, and wanted to be an astronaut. Lola spoke Spanish so she had little to say. Later, we found out Lola's pretty yellow flower was plastic and hot-glued to her head. Lola was actually a Larry. Jerome was confused and heartbroken that his girlfriend turned out to be his boyfriend, and since then they departed ways.

Lola stays with me. Jerome is at Calarts with McKenzie.

The last picture was also inspired by a rough sketch when I visited Calarts about a month ago.

I'm not as pleased with it and I didn't know why. The critique helped me understand that the composition and directions were too obvious/forced. There's no way I can repair it, but I like the idea of the image nonetheless.

And there you have it. I'll update more as I go along!

Monday, September 29, 2008

First Blog Post!

Here is the first blog post by Alyx who loves jellyfish!

Prepare for work, boring mundane bits and pieces about my boring mundane life, and a whole lot of sketches.

-> First exciting piece of news: Going to go to Calarts for Halloween starting Oct 28-Nov 2. Very exciting to see McKenzie, very excited to dress up.

Also:: Finally published website. You can see it now at ::