Tuesday, August 19, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 33

My beloved Kooky Spookys, ghostly glow-in-the-dark finger puppets from Hasbro (1969), at the height of popularity for luminous toys. Included are two characters that never went past the prototype stage. Collage of card, watercolour, black Sharpie and glitter stars.

Week 33 Toy
Week 33: Toy


Week 33 Toy II
Week 33: Toy II

"Portrait of the Artist as an Action Figure". 3D assemblage art using textured card, printed in Pages, with collage, black Sharpie, twist ties, photographs, etc.

Okay, I was encouraged to add more Book Week accessories! Note that the male teacher-librarian action figure is always the "shortpack" and thus highly collectible.

Week 33 Toy IIa

Friday, August 08, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 32

Now in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA, and supposedly on my way home tomorrow - two hurricanes (Iselle and Julio) permitting!

I'm working with very limited materials here, holed up in my hotel room in Honolulu as two hurricanes bear down their fury, probably delaying my return to Australia tomorrow. Not too sure what I've made. More a repressed fear breaking through for my travel buddy and me. Oil pastels and metallic ink Sharpies on Ingres paper.

Week 32 Psychedelic
Week 32: Psychedelic

Probably needs a wash, but all I have is decaf coffee and green tea.


Back from my overseas travels! While trawling through some online examples of "psychedelic" this week, I came across a reference to the villain Louie the Lilac, who appeared in the 60s TV series, "Batman". Here is my miniature psychedelic wooden fairy door, which will be located to the base of a tree in my garden in the morning. Decorated with Tamiya acrylic paint lilacs, and details in puffy fabric paint, Signo pen white opaque paint and black Sharpie.

Week 32 Psychedelic II
Week 32: Psychedelic II
Week 32 Psychedelic fairy door

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 31

Still in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, inspired this week by Winnie-the-Pooh and the poetry of AA Milne.

Inspired by AA Milne's poem, "Lines and Squares" which, as a child, I thought was called "Lions and Squares". During a poetry show at teachers' college, we reinterpreted this poem as a game of Hopscotch. So here is my collage of lions and bears - using paper, oil pastel, crayon, white Tulip "puffy dimensional fabric paint" and Scotch Expressions patterned "washi tape". Also featuring chalk lines, parallel lines and written punishment lines. The shapes were all cut freehand.

Week 31 Lines
Week 31: Lines

"Whenever I walk in a London street,
I'm ever so careful to watch my feet;
And I keep in the squares,
And the masses of bears,
Who wait at the corners all ready to eat
The sillies who tread on the lines of the street
Go back to their lairs,
And I say to them, 'Bears,
Just look how I'm walking in all the squares!'"
(AA Milne.)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 30

My US holiday continues! Ironically, this Sydneysider is still reporting live from Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, as my US holiday continues. This week, I spent about four extended sessions (sketching, outlining, painting, final touches) on a project that bounced into my head the moment I saw an ArtiCrafti brand moulded "koala canvas mask" in a Dollar King bargain store - for just $2.50 - a few months ago. I had to carefully pack and bring it OS with me, much to my penpal host's delight, who enjoyed watching the artwork emerge from my brain! The mask is decorated with images of Sydney in black ball-point ink and watercolour.

Week 30 Sydney, angle 1
Week 30: Sydney

Week 30 Sydney, angle 2

Week 30 Sydney, angle 3

Week 30 Sydney, angle 4

The mask is decorated with 3D detail, which includes yellow pompons for wattle flowers, white Tulip brand "puffy dimensional fabric paint" for seagulls and wave crests, and a toothpick flag.


Week 30 Sydney with Olivia
Above: As modelled by my Ann Arbor penpal, Olivia!

Week 30 Sydney in shadow box
Framed in a shadowbox

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 29

Still live from Michigan, USA. Douglas Lake in Northern Michigan, to be precise! The theme is "Plane, so here'a a model plane, created with iridescent Origami paper, which flies over my photograph of the lake at sunset.

Week 29 Plane
Week 29: Plane


Week 29 Plane II
Week 29: Plane II

"Open wide, here comes an aeroplane!" Paper collage and permanent black Sharpie.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 28

Again live from Michigan, USA! Sitting here in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on a drizzly Tuesday morning, patiently(?) waiting for it to be Wednesday in Australia, so that I can share my "Week 28: Feather" before I'm out of Internet range for a whole week! Here is some assemblage art, which uses sequins, plastic jewels, chenille sticks, stickered lettering, a touch of gold glitter, a wiggly eye - and real feathers - on a wooden blank of a rather plain bird who now feels Very Pretty.

Week 28 Feather
Week 28: Feather

Week 28 Feather combo
The original blank (right) and an outdoors shot (left and below) of the complete work.

Week 28 Feather outdoors


When my brother's then girlfriend planned on wearing a Scarlet O'Hara crinoline for a fancy dress party in the late 70s, she ordered him the Rhett Butler outfit at the hire store. He examined it, baulked at the price and, instead, asked me to help him make a crepe paper chicken costume. Girlfriend was appalled - and my brother the chook was startled to meet a butcher at the party, who chased him all night with a giant plastic meat cleaver. Not easy to run in swimming flippers! Based on a Polaroid photo taken by me, the sketch is done in oil pastels on Ingres paper.

Week 28 Feather II
Week 28: Feather II

Week 28 Feather III
Week 28: Feather III

As in Arnold Feather (Jeff Kevin) of "Number 96", inspired by Andy Warhol's infamous Marilyn Monroe artwork. Freehand sketch with black Sharpie on transparent plastic film. Six coloured papers were placed on top, to colour areas with pencils, then placed underneath for individual photography. Six digital thumbnail tiles were then sorted in iPhoto and a final "screenshot" taken.

Saturday, July 05, 2014

52-Week Illustration Challenge, Week 27

Live from Michigan, USA! I've only ever been here in the snow before, but it's summer, of course! The snowman on the right with the "Star Trek" phaser is based on the one made by my penpal, Olivia, and I during out first meeting in January 1984. The little one is based on the one outside our restaurant window in December 2012. The squirrel victim is depicted because - squirrel! Drawn with oil pastels on two backgrounds.

Week 27 Snow
Week 26: Snow

I was thrilled to unite these two long-gone snowpeople, separated by decades, but definitely kindred spirits. Just noticing that the photo of this piece loses some subtlety in the hand phaser, and yet improves the tones on the squirrel. I'm fascinated how oil pastels work, and how they scan/photograph, when the colours are layered - and loving the unpredictability.

Prismatic origami paper snowflakes on a black card background.

Week 27 Snow II
Week 27: Snow II