Most Valiant Attempt

May 27th, 2011 | Posted in Me Me Me

A couple of weeks ago, while I was watching Sweden get its butt kicked by FInland in hockey, I found myself yelling out “valiant attempt!” at the TV during one of Sweden’s more desperate goal attempts. This sparked a memory I hadn’t thought of in a while.

When I was in my first elementary school (K-2), we had a spring fair every year that involved a cake decorating contest. I remember my first cake. It was a yellow cake with white cake frosting, and my mom let me go to town on it with an icing bag with red and blue icing. It was one big kindergardener scribble.

For my second cake, my dad had this great idea. He wanted us to make a cake with a mountain and a train going around it.

We started with a double layer devils food cake, and covered it in white frosting. We also made a flat, rectangular devils food cake. My dad cut the flat cake into squares and stacked a bunch of them on top of each other with toothpicks holding it upright. Next, he took a knife and carved the mountain out of it, and then attached it to the main cake with toothpicks. Then we melted a bowl of white icing, and poured it over the mountain to create “snow.” After that I drew train tracks around the cake with chocolate icing, and we cut up the remaining squares into train cars. We stuck those onto the cake and, TAHDAH, we had our cake!

We were both so proud! We took it to the fair and set it down on the table with all the other cakes, hoping to win for best cake.

Judging came and went, and we did, in fact, end up taking a small trophy home. NOT for “Best Cake” as we had hoped, but, instead, for “Most Valiant Attempt.”

I was about 6 years old, so I had never seen the word “valiant” before. And on the following Monday I took my little trophy in to class for show-and-tell and I announced to the class that I had won the prize for:

“Most Violent Attempt.”

I can’t remember if it was my teacher or my dad who later corrected me. But I have never been able to forget its meaning since..

In any case, it’s one of my favorite memories of my dad. He was so excited about this cake. I think it’s the only time I ever made a cake with my dad. I wish I had pictures of it. And I wish I could talk to my dad about it. That’s why I decided to draw it instead. :)

Next stop, Magrathea!

May 25th, 2011 | Posted in The Artist

If you ever read A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, then the illustration and title of this post need no explanation. If you haven’t, I’m not going to explain. I’ll just say READ IT. It’s one of my favorite books, and I’ve read it too many times to count!

The real reason I drew this was because today is Towel Day! It’s a day to honor the late and great Douglas Adams by carrying a towel with you wherever you go. I am home sick today with a killer throat thing, so I’ve got plenty of towels at my disposal should Vogons decide to demolish the earth and I have to hitch a quick ride out of here. But, for now, I’d really appreciate someone stopping by with a Pan Galagtic Gargle Blaster to make me feel better :)

‘Slice of Life’ Artist Cards

May 1st, 2011 | Posted in Me Me Me, The Artist

When I went to the US to visit in October I was finally able to get my hands on some Bristol artists cards that I meant to use at NYCC . Since I have a load of them left over, I’ve been using them for several different things. I love them and I think my favorite use of these have been to record tiny scenes from my daily life. (3.5″ x 2.5″ or 6.35 x 8.89 cm).

I’ve only had time for the 4 below so far. I intend to display them eventually in my apartment, somehow.

I drew this one when the espresso machine at work broke and I spent a few weeks buying my lattes in the subway before heading up to the office. In winter, in Sweden, it is very dark for a long period of time, and very cold. Every day it becomes harder and harder to wake up, and I find myself in a daze just dragging myself through the morning. I got my inspiration for this card when riding the escalator while in one of these dazes.

Because it’s so dark, it is still full on nighttime by the time most people are heading to work on winter mornings. As hard as the dark makes it to wake up, it does make for a lovely commute with a night sky above you the whole time. The inspiration for my second card came one morning while staring out at the Moon and one of the planets from the subway car. I realized that most people had their noses shoved into their newspapers, and no one cared about looking out at the sky.

The third one came about just to show where I spend most of my time at home: at the dining room table working at my computer.

The last one I just finished yesterday. I’ve spent almost every single Saturday morning for the past few months at a café in a nearby bakery either meeting up with a friend or going alone to draw. It’s become one of my favorite places to be in Sweden, and one of the best parts of my weekend.

I have so much fun making these, but I don’t have so much time for them. AS I create them, however I’ll continue to post them as well. :)

From another galaxy…

April 30th, 2011 | Posted in The Artist

Inspired by one of my favorite Jamiroquai songs. I was listening to it last night and I just got a hit of inspiration. When that happens I have to just go with it or I’ll never do it. So here it is :)

Eostre – The Goddess of Spring

April 24th, 2011 | Posted in The Artist

The perfect skipping stone…

March 13th, 2011 | Posted in The Artist

I finally saw Amélie for the first time yesterday. What a wonderful film! I loved the story, and I loved the visuals. Especially the colors. Lots of contrasting green and red. Very bright and happy. So I was inspired to draw something.

I decided to use this opportunity to try something a little new. When I draw digitally I always use illustrator for drawing, and then photoshop for colors and details. This time I decided to try to do everything in just photoshop, which is much more like drawing on paper than Illustrator is. The result is much less smooth, but it also has some more character, I think. It’s going to take a lot of practice for me to get used to it, but I’m willing to do it. I had a lot of fun with it :)

Precious Things…

March 5th, 2011 | Posted in The Artist

(click for full size)

In an attempt to finally start updating my portfolio, I decided to do the above drawing of one of my absolute favorite musicians, Tori Amos. I’m not the best with caricatures. This is partly also because I almost never do them. So I’m giving it a go.

The actual portfolio page isn’t updated yet (it’s so old it’s embarrassing). I figure I’m going to get a few more pieces done before I do that.