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Marshall Art Studio: Illustration Friday

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Illustration Friday

my high school yearbook cover
updated yearbook cover

The big one's the original cover of my high school yearbook, my first published illustration. The color version, which updates the 1980 cover characters, was part of a website for my 20th reunion.

Tech Talk 1980

India ink, crow-quill pen, which I'd been using for all of one week. Before then, my drawings were pic-pen renderings of Evel Knevel or Spider-Man on my term papers. Competition for this honor was intense, so if you think the drawing's shaky, you should see who they rejected.

Tech Talk 2000

Photoshop, Painter.


"To be at peace in crime! ah, who can thus flatter himself."

-- Voltaire

Tech Talk

Corel Painter, Watercolor tool. It's still not a perfect emulation of traditional watercoloring. Using faint values and flat coverage is particularly difficult. A fair amount of brush and color control was sacrificed just to produce finished art. However, I'm much happier with this than my previous attempts (My Wind | My Mask).


Another example of my fascination with how war and peace are inseparable realities. Hopefully this is more than an updated Vietnam War-era "Make Love Not War" concept.


So far, this week's theme "80s" just didn't grab me. I didn't want to break my iFriday streak (at least 1 per week since September '06) and had some unfinished business with the Peace theme.


Tech Talk Adobe Illustrator (with airbrush blends in Photoshop), found art. Backwards-engineered album art for custom presentation. Turns out going vector isn't much faster for me than Painter.

Time Machine For those younger than dirt, this is my vamped-up rendition of Joy, a character from the hit 1970s Saturday morning live-action Bugaloos (Official | Wiki). Considering its producers might have been high as a kite -- even by 1970s standards -- it's a miracle the episodes were even coherent. The show's popularity was very likely from Caroline Ellis, the 19-year-old actress who played Joy. It's been over 30 years now. Can you name someone other than Caroline or Martha Raye?

Pinup for my vamped-up version, the body is based on a 26-year old Mara Carday (AOL Photo Swipe | Official | Wiki).

iFridaynista Slow work week for Dave? Yes.


Tech Talk Photoshop, scanner, Google Image Search

Art Speak Sometimes, you don't have to draw a damn thing. This "found art" approach is a return to my art-school roots. Like most of my work of that period, I have no idea what this drawing actually means. It probably says more "coffee stain" than "buzz".

iFridaynista All new art, a direct -- if somewhat addled -- response to the assignment.


Tech Talk Corel Painter, Arylic and Pencil tools.

Art Speak This started off as a single-layer, one-session "action" painting. While the background still adheres to this method, I couldn't escape the need to "draw" the main figure. My curse is spending so much time on the "behind the scenes" elements of illustration (reference, tight pencils) that there's little time left for final art. The whole idea of the "single session" painting is to produce work that is fresh, direct and less dependent on reference. My greatest fear that this work is only rushed, hacked and lazy. With Boston's 60-degree weather weekend, there were much more satisfying ways of being lazy.

iFridaynista Without a real client, it's hard to tell if I "direct hit" this week's assignment or merely grazed it with the "flesh wound" of abstract reference.


Artspeak Corel Painter, Acylic tool. Slight color manipulation in Photoshop. I love the technique, but it's taking way too much time. I'm either gonna have to go vector, or allot more time to finess the painting.

Content Cramming this week's theme with 1940s pinup art may seem a bit forced. My most recent entries, however, have been either way too serious or guy-centric. Hence, the throwback girly art. In my defense, the tradition isn't entirely without precident.

Process Most of my iFriday work -- including this week's -- is done in public at my favorite coffee house in Cambridge MA. Working on the saucier stuff sure generates a lot of discussion.

What the Heck is Illustration Friday?

Think of it as a voluntary, client-free playground for illustrators. A topic is posted every Friday morning. Participants from around the world create, post and share their interpretations.

No Client? Why Bother?

At this stage of my career, I need a weekly public exercise to draw anything at all.

Freshness Dating

Unless otherwise stated, my iFriday work is all-new, created soley for that week's theme. Other Freshness categories include:

  • Repurposed
    Old art, lifted straight from the archives with no current modifications
  • Refurbished
    Previously-viewed art, modified and enhanced for current times
  • Alt Theme
    Past iFriday themes, presented when I have nothing for the current week's theme

Mission Statement

"It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not."
-- Andre Gide

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