Thursday, June 24, 2010

Cartoonish Nakey Folk

Well, by golly, I missed it yesterday! I was planning to post, but things didn't quite work out, however, I do have a little something today. It is what you might call a cartoon nakey sketch dump, for lack of a better name. I used to use a traditional sketchbook, but in the last couple of months I've started drawing in a newsprint pad, which I find works remarkably well. However, the pads really don't hold up well to repeated opening and closing, so the pages come loose pretty easily. I usually use an ocher or light blue colored pencil or art stick and then go over the lines I like with a black colored pencil. All of these sketches are from my imagination, and were done while sitting in my car in a grocery store parking lot. What do you think about that?

Starting off, we have a collection of nakey gals in a variety of body types, including my favorite, the pregnant lady on the end.

Here is a tatted up alternative gal going topfree, because topless implies that something is missing, and clearly she is not, well, except for her right hand..

This one is inspired by vintage nudist magazines from the 40s to the 60s. I'm simply fascinated by the concept. There is just something about the average mid-century family standing around in their skin enjoying everyday activities, or doing mundane tasks. It's a bit of an odd mixture, like a hybrid of wholesome and creepy (in a good way).

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Bones of Caravaggio

I recently noticed a little blurb in the newspaper which stated that some of the bones of the immensely talented Baroque artist, Caravaggio have been (more or less) identified. There were only about 4 or 5 bones and in some cases only fragments found, and they are so old and the DNA has deteriorated to such a degree that scientifically they can only be about an 85% certain that they are his. The fact that he had no known children doesn't help either, since there is no direct line to follow. Some were hoping that we would finally know for certain what actually killed him by the 400th anniversary of his death next month, but despite this new find there is still quite a bit of mystery and speculation on the possibilities. He made more than a few enemies along the way, so murder isn't out of the question, however, malaria, infected wounds, heatstroke, and syphilis are also on the list of suspects, and it seems he was also weakened by lead poisoning from the lead in his paints. This is only a guess, but I would say it was probably a combination of some or all them. That's an awful lot of ailments to have in a time when the most respected medical treatments involved perfumed enemas and draining off of large quantities of a patient's blood.

Caravaggio was born in Milan,  his given name was Michelangelo Merisi. A short time later, in an attempt to avoid The Plague which has wreaking havoc in Milan at the time, his family moved to the town where he grew up and was later named after, Caravaggio. After his apprenticeship, he became the stereotypical self-destructive artist. Fights and violent rages fueled by alcohol and quite possibly a bipolar disorder, regularly lent credence to his  personal motto: Nec Spe, Nec Metu, (Without  Hope, Without Fear). He preferred the company of thugs and whores and often used them as models in his religious paintings. While he didn't invent it, he is most famous for pushing the envelope of the chiaroscuro technique, which is the use of bright lights and  and solid darks to create a dramatic effect.  I don't remember where I heard this, but one of the most fascinating things about Caravaggio is that he didn't sketch or draw, he simply started painting. That's akin to building a house without a plan. Below are a few examples of his work, and of course, you can Google his name and find tons more.


The Crucifixion of Saint Peter. 1601

David With the Head of Goliath. 1609-1610.

Judith Beheading Holofernes. 1598-1599.

Death of the Virgin. 1601-1606.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Miz Daphne Malloy

Before I came up with Bert the Graphics Dog, I had an idea for a different mascot for my business, Vintage 66 Graphics. I went with kind of an anti-hipster alternative chick by the name of Miz Daphne Malloy, and while she is awfully cute, and certainly has loads of promise, she is on hold for now. I strongly suspect she will resurface one of these days, so don't you fret about her.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

More Lost Restaurant Sketches

Last week I did a post about an old billboard for the Pixie Kitchen Restaurant, so I thought I'd post a little sketch of the actual building. This is from an older photograph, and I believe that this was how the building looked originally. There was a later addition, which pretty much doubled the floor space.

The Castle Restaurant was a roadhouse and quite a hot spot for jazz back in the day. It was located in Gladstone on River Road just off the Super 99 Highway. Someday I'll be posting a more in depth post about it, but quickly I'll mention that it was one of the neatest buildings ever, basically a mini castle, and as I recall it started off as a lapidary shop. It fell into disrepair and was torn down a few years ago to make way for some god-awful crap homes.

*Note: Been having trouble getting Blogger to work correctly, so the right edges of the images are cut off. If I make them smaller to fit better some of the text goes all wonky. I think I would give my left nut for something to work the way it is supposed to. Just kidding—about the nut, I mean.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Zombie Shake

This is just a page of sketches, the people heads are just filler, the main focus is the zombie milkshake, I really don't know what it means—it just came into my head one day.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Pixie Kitchen Billboard

This sketch was inspired by some fond childhood memories. It is my interpretation of one of the many billboards I used to see along Highway 18 when my family and I would be on our way to Lincoln City at the Oregon Coast. The Pixie Kitchen was opened in the late 30's (as I recall) in a little hamlet called Oceanlake right along Highway 101. At one point there was even a short lived amusement park called Pixieland just a few miles North, back on Highway 18. Sadly, both are long gone.

My interpretation of a billboard for the Famous Pixie Kitchen along Highway 18.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Inspirations: Character Ideas

I'm always on the lookout for characters that I can riff off of and whatnot, but it can be kind of awkward if they realize you're sketching them, especially if it is unflattering and they want to see your work. Anyway, I recently stumbled on this treasure trove of ready-made characters from the real world over at the Poorly Dressed Blog. I've put up some examples here, but if you want to see more head on over.

Here's a lovely little charmer.
Fashion Fail - Triple Take

Nice dog, Tough Guy, and the white wine is a nice touch.

Jumping Jehoshaphat!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Sketches: Character Studies

I've been working on some character sketches of myself for an informational project, basically, I'm going to be using sequential art (comic book format) in a series of essays on my Vintage 66 Graphics Blog, about the basics of  graphics and will be geared for the small business owner. The goal is to keep it really simple and entertaining, but at the same time passing along some useful information. I think it's important to keep the graphics simple in this project, because I don't want them to overshadow the information. I still haven't found the final charcter, but here are some sketches that I have worked out so far. I may end up using an animal of some kind rather than myself, but we'll see. I know the last one isn't going to work, I've only seen one full episode of Star Trek, but still I know what happens to red shirts.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Shaking Things Up

I've been thinking some things over lately, and I believe the time has come to shake some things up here at A Walk on the Wiles Side. This began as my sketch blog, but more and more I'm realizing that there are so many other elements that influence and contribute to my art. Music is certainly a big one, and so is literature, but even other artists, both past and present leave their mark. It's really just a big distillation process. So, I want to try an experiment and expand things here a bit to include some of those influences. 

Way back in 1977, before my girlfriend was even born, I went to my first rock concert, which featured KISS with Cheap Trick opening. I was eleven years old, and it truly changed my life forever. It opened up a whole new world of passion and excitement and the thrill of live rock-n-roll. Anyway, I stumbled across this clip of them performing one of their classic tunes with their current lineup. It's good to see that more than thirty years later they've still got it. 

[And yes, I do realize that the video box has crossed over into my sidebar, but that is something I'll need to figure out a little later].

Watch KISS playing Black Diamond (with a cool Whole Lotta Love interlude) live in Budapest