ArtPrize 2017 is Upon Us!

Tomorrow, ArtPrize 9 opens in Grand Rapids, MI and it's my 4th time participating (!!). I spent the greater part of the last year working on my piece and I'm really excited to show it to everyone who visits The B.O.B. (the same venue who had me in 2015!). It was created with a pencil drawing, a watercolor underpainting, and then a final layer of carbon dust, ink & white chalk. 

Round one voting starts tomorrow and ends on the 30th - it's the most essential time for you to visit, if you want to vote for me. To that end, my voter ID is 64700 (you have to be in GR to vote... or at least to register)

Here are some images from the installation of my piece - Honey Gum Moss & Denim (click the title to view the project's webpage):

So... Next Month I'm Giving a TEDx Talk About Art & Science??

Yep - You read that right. SOMEHOW, I was chosen as one of 9 folks who will be speaking at the April 13th TEDxYDL event here in Ypsilanti, MI @ Eastern Michigan University's Halle Library. Fun fact: Tickets sold out in less than an hour! O.o

My talk is still very much in development, but I can share part of my proposal from my application with you:

I would like to talk about the human eye - what’s incredible about it (structurally/functionally - my PhD research was in the eye), why I have drawn them obsessively for 30+ years (as a medical illustrator and fine artist), and how studying them can bring a deeper appreciation of not only the interdependence of art and science, but also how that can been applied to how we relate to each other and our world. An overarching theme of my work is appreciating the commonplace - a practice that leads to more understanding/thoughtfulness of how we are all connected.

It's gonna some press in the Detroit Metro Times and there's a brief write-up on the Ypsilanti District Library's website.

SOoooo... yeah, that's garnering a ton of my attention right now. It's a massive thing (to my mind, at least) and to say it's not scary would be, well, fibbing to the extreme. Scary, but also tremendously exciting, I should say! It's been awhile since I've been up in front of folks and I really do thrive there - even if it's terrifying. :)

My profile page is here and afterword, my talk will be available on YouTube and I'll definitely share that with you. 

In other news, new art:

EYES! One is Soooo 80s & One is a Tiny Modern Lover's Eye Prototype

...I'm not the best at titles. I AM good at drawing eyes, tho. Here ya go!

Wanna know more about lovers' eyes? Try the Salon's article: The Secret History of Lovers Eyes

Switching Gears Toward Art Prize

No rest for the wicked! I have a bear of an Art Prize piece to finish, so, I've hit the ground running with a new eye drawing (upper left, below). I haven't posted many of these to my newsfeed, so, here's a little gallery of all eleven that I have done, so far. I'm hoping to complete 100 when the proverbial fat lady sings:

Third Eye Drawing - Experiments That Worked!

Pencil, Sharpie & ball point pen

Pencil, Sharpie & ball point pen

So, I was really keen to work on a non-caucasian skin tone AND eye shape, so here we are! I toned the paper first and "built" the portrait on top (with some erasing). As I was working, I realized that my pencil arsenal did not have the range to get the deep darks I wanted (sorry, 4B).

So, what did I do? I gingerly grabbed a sharpie and filled in the iris and pupil. Then, I got a black Bic pen and enhanced the skin folds - it gave a nice depth of tone that wasn't as bold as the sharpie, but darker than the pencils. At the end, I REALLY pressed my luck and used Sharpie veeeeeery lightly in the upper eye creases and the corners of the eye.

So, what do you think? I'm calling it a great first try... for now. :)

First Drawings for ArtPrize 2016!

Holy cow, I'm doing a lot of art stuff this year! ...I love it! Hooray!

It's ArtPrize artist registration time again and I'm all signed up and ready to connect with a venue. That phase starts next week, so, I'm keen to get some drawings done to attract a great potential partner. Here are two... pencil drawings (old skool!).

I've described my ArtPrize idea this way:

After the incredible response to my entry last year (Rob, see video below), where I displayed a large realistic drawing and included time lapse video of how it was created, I’ve been inspired to work in that realm again. This work will focus solely on the human eye and all of its magnificent detail. Is it the “window to the soul”? What can you see with your OWN eyes when you study another’s? And finally, how were they created? I’m interested in letting non-drawers (and NEW drawers!) inside my creative process with this piece. Thank you!
— me

Fingers crossed that venues are as keen on my idea as they were last year - maybe even MORE so! I'll post about it all once it starts. In the meantime, drawdrawdraw...