When I finish up a big project, I like to take some time to do a sketchbook piece for my own pleasure. The title of this post is taken from the song “Midnight Surprise” by Lightspeed Champion, I definitely suggest looking him up. I like the way the phrase sounds. I started this piece by simply drawing in a stream of consciousness. I find this method of drawing to be very therapeutic. I’m not worried about concept or form, I just go with whatever pops into my mind. It’s a way to sort through the random clutter of thoughts that swirl through my head at any given moment. I often feel overwhelmed with everything that I’m thinking, this is a way to clarify things.
I’m trying my best to keep this blog updated on a regular basis. I have this urge to constantly get my work out there.
Yesterday was the deadline for submissions to Psilo Design’s Portland Funbook 3. Of course I had waited until the day of to get my piece together. I blocked off the whole day to work on it, so I had enough time to produce a good piece of art. After roughing two concepts that I wasn’t quite feeling, I got a hit of inspiration from the Micron Hero sticker I produced last year. My piece for this years Funbook is a continuation of the Demon Samurai legend. The Samurai is predominantly inspired by the legendary Miyamoto Musashi. Musashi is quite possibly one of the most famous Samurai of all time. Fittingly enough he was also an artist, known for his ink paintings and brushwork. His life is chronicled in the somewhat fictional book Musashi by Eiji Yoshikawa. It’s probably one of my favorite books.
I see many parallels between graphic artists and the Samurai class. A freelance graphic artist is akin to a wandering Ronin, working for whoever will pay. Of course I would like to experience working for a studio of firm, which would be like serving a lord. We practice our skills in times of peace to be sharp in battle, which is when big project comes along. I nerd out on this stuff on a regular basis. I’ll talk more about this at a later time, I just wanted to shed some light on the Micron Hero Samurai.
I’ve been riding a fixed gear for, oh about a year now. I love the visceral experience of having your legs in constant motion, the bike really feels like more of an extension of your body than a vehicle. I don’t really have a commute at the moment, with school being just down the way and any work I do usually taking place from home. I ride for fun, to get away from the confining glow of this computer screen.
I haven’t gotten much riding in over the past couple of months, mainly do to the thesis project and its drain on my time. Combine this with a slipped lockring on my cog and I’m off the road for awhile. Last saturday I took my bike to the shop for a tuneup. The mechanic took the chain off and looked at the hub/lockring setup. Turns out the lockring had been screwed on crooked, messing up the threads. I put a new wheel on it with a much better hub and cog. Hopefully this will stand up better than the last one. I also replaced my dropdown handlebars with a low-rise moustache bar. I like a more upright ride I’ve found. Time to hit the Springwater Corridor, I’m looking forward to a summer of great riding.
Let’s just say this is a little ode to caffeine. I know it’s not the healthiest practice but I often start my days with a cup of coffee, waiting until lunch to eat. Usually after lunch I’ll start on some more administrative type tasks, but before lunch it’s draw time. When I’m in a creative groove I tend to ignore the bodies’ needs, focusing solely on my work. In short I need to work on balancing creative time with more physically healthy activities.