Thursday, October 30, 2014

Juanjo Guarnido's Rock Video

Juanjo Guarnido, the Spanish illustrator who co-created the comic Blacksad was formerly a Disney animator. Last March he launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to direct an animated music video for the Swedish rock band Freak Kitchen. The resulting video features a lot of Guarnido's hand-drawn 2D animation. The effect is aggressive, abrasive, and outrageous: perfect for the spirit of the band. (Link to video)
Via Cartoon Brew

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Painting a Texas Townscape in Watercolor

Here's a short video showing the making of my watercolor townscape in Bryan, Texas. (Direct link to video)

The video is shot with a very compact point-and-shoot camera mounted to a street pole with a flexible tripod that can grab onto just about anything.
Homemade sketchbook pochade easel using adjustable torque hinges
Full length tutorial DVD from Amazon: Watercolor in the Wild

HD download at Sellfy
 (Paypal) or Gumroad (credit cards)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Keanes to Be Subject of Tim Burton Film

Walter and Margaret Keane
Walter and Margaret Keane were known for the popular prints of big-eyed children in the 1960s. Though he claimed to have painted the pictures, she created them secretly behind the scenes. Their story will be featured in an upcoming Tim Burton biopic.
Article in the Guardian: "The big-eyed children: the extraordinary story of an epic art fraud"
Walter Keane on Wikipedia
First look at the Tim Burton film
Thanks, Bryn

OK Go's "I Won't Let You Down"

The alt rock band OKGo, known for its innovative long-take videos, has released a new one called "I Won't Let You Down." A camera on a drone octocopter tracks the four band members as they move around on Honda motorized unicycles. The drone follows them outdoors and then moves aloft to show an array of Japanese schoolgirls dancing Busby-Berkeley-style with colorful umbrellas. (Direct link to video)
I haven't seen any behind-the-scenes video, but Billboard deconstructs the video here.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Plein Air Watercolor of a House

While I painted the house in Austin, Texas, I made this one minute video to show the basic sequence of steps. (Direct link to video)
Full length tutorial download "Watercolor in the Wild" 
DVD available with exclusive slide show.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Saturday on the east side of Austin

People told us to go see the weird side of Austin, Texas, so we walked around Sixth Street on Saturday morning. The dance clubs, comedy joints and sports bars had shills out front trying to lure people in with cheap drinks.

People sketches in Austin, Texas by Jeanette Gurney
But they weren't getting customers. The street reeked of vomit and urine and spilled beer from the night before. There was a head shop with a window full of old clown toys, and a gift store with cute skeleton trinkets and a girl trying to sell tickets to the Museum of the Weird. But no one was buying.

Ballpoint pen sketches by Jeanette Gurney, "20% observation, 80% memory."
There were too many tourists and the sun was blazing hot, so we walked east. We found some shade and quiet up on Seventh and Waller at a bus stop in front of a family services agency. Young mothers held their new babies. A few dads pushed strollers past us, stopping to smile when they went by, but not saying much.

I looked across Seventh to an average house. There was something strong and dignified about it that spoke to me. The owner came out at one point to pick up a couple of beer bottles that someone had left on his front lawn the night before.

Any house that you might choose at random is like a stage set for a thousand family dramas. Between its four walls play all the stories of life—the wonder of new love, the laughter and tears of raising children, the frailty of old age.

Big trees shaded the house, and wires connected it to the worries of the wider world. As I worked on my little painting, I tried to see the sketchbook page as its own little microcosm, a self-contained world.

I had to think about paint and the tools and techniques, but I was trying to ride those tools into the world of the picture. I was trying to pour cement on sidewalks so that a kid could skateboard on them, and build a porch so that someone could sit there to drink lemonade and escape the heat.

Waller Street, Austin, by James Gurney, watercolor, 5x8 inches
For me the joy of painting is trying to get beyond the paint, to be able to enter the tiny universe of the image.