I found some art class project from high school. Thought I’d share them here and provide a bit of ‘splaining. The high school art days were quite joyful, I had fun with the projects and there were some fun people. Things got kind of serious by senior year since we ended up in AP class and we had to submit a portfolio, but I still found some time to do some fingerpainting. In no particular chronological order, here are some samples from 9th grade to 12th.
First off is one of my favorite pieces which I’m glad survived. The project was to draw a fairly tale/children’s story but with the “style” of a child. I forget exactly why we needed to do this, I think it had something to do with Picasso’s quote of “as a kid I learned to paint like a master, but as an adult I need to master how to paint like a kid” (I’m paraphrasing). Point is, I had a lot of fun. As you can see I chose Alice in Wonderland (as did others). It was a lot of fun but not surprisingly it was hard too. As we “grow up” we tend to lose a lot of color and design sense as we take ourselves too seriously. Kids just know how to draw for the enjoyment of it.
I tried to put in there as much as I could remember from the story. If you can see the whole image, have fun identifying things.
Here we have an alligator egg. I don’t remember what the assignment was…It’s done in color pencil and I do like the way the tail came out. I think I was excited because to me I felt I captured how the scales were supposed to look.
This one is interesting. The assignment had something to do with Expressionism. So I chose a “strong emotion”, I’m pretty sure it was fear so I was trying to use the jagged lines and sharp contrasts. It’s done with oil pastels and scratching. I think it was one of my first pieces I put up in a gallery for high schoolers.
This one is a practice page for the color wheel. I recall that it was lots of fun to do some things in “kid style” as can be seen by the writing (later on there was as twisted little page with “little timmy” and his crazy family members…save that for later). But the idea here too is the practice that art students are supposed to do with color, value, hue, and whatnot. I think I got to the point where I could bust out a pretty good sphere.
These are some unfinished “political” pieces…I don’t quite remember for what. Interesting that the message still resonates quite well for today. I recall I was trying to play around with the cartooning aspect, almost “School Rock” style.
This piece was our “Pop Art” project a la Lichenstein and Warhol. To think they got famous for doing things that were already done…especially with the comic book pages! My piece was not very original, I wish I had done something different. But I had a Pepsi bottle and I wanted to play around with the color. It’s painted (tempera?) and getting the lines was actually a little harder that I thought.
This I jokingly titled “Portrait of the Artist as a Young Goat”. The assignment was something to do with anthropomorphism or the like. Point being that we had to blend a picture of ourselves with an animal. I don’t quite recall why I chose a goat. I certainly didn’t have the facial hair then (maybe subliminally I wanted chin hair?). This is done in pencil and I was trying to figure out how to do blending. I think this may have been our introduction to the “tortillon“.
These are hands as you can see. I really got into drawing hands by senior year. They kind of seemed easy but not really. I think it was mostly that I could use my own hands as models.
This was our Surrealist project. As you can see I really got into Magrite. His stuff was just so cool. Nothing against Dali, but I think I just didn’t really get him at the time. Magrite on the other hand had suits and hats, and that looked cool to me. My piece here is kind of bleh…I think the only technical skill I took away was how to paint the lightbulb. I would redo this piece for sure.
I recall for this that I had been reading some Harvey Kurtzman war comics and I was trying to imitate his pacing or the like. This was meant for some class project but it didn’t work out…I did have fun with the cartoony style. I also recall I was reading some Vietnam book for English class (Going after Cacciato…I didn’t get it).
These two are copies of the originals I ended up giving to Mr. Huth, our English teacher. He happened to give extremely generous extra credit to those who were “creative” so that meant I drew and drew to keep my grade up. This is part of a “manga” attempt with the Illiad. I was reading Ranma 1/2 at the time and I was also still figuring out how to draw, but I’m very pleased with the results. I did a few of these for him. With Justin we also did a large painted canvas. I wonder how Mr. Huth has kept these….
This was not for school in any way. It’s actually a pretty bad sample of our “comic book company” as I was trying to figure out how to draw. This was back when Image Comics was a big deal and so everyone was hopped up on creator owned comics. Dave created his character, Bratwurst, and I created some cheese ones like Milk Dud (and I don’t remember the names of the others…). Here they are in a Team-Up Book. Maybe it’s time to resuscitate these guys. The name of our company was Lunar Comics. I’ll have to dig up a few more samples for a future post.
This is a sketch page of a project with two friends. I can’t really explain the story, I’m not even sure how the title came about (you’ll have to ask Justin and Robert). It’s “Pirates Anonymous” and it’s based on a project they had to do for Electronics class: put sensors on a football so you can find it after dropping it from a plane. We turned that into a story with my wannabe manga attempt. This was my first real challenge at “creating” a comic book, beginning to end. The trick was also in capturing the magic genius that is Robert and the insanely amazing work that came out when he and Justin paired up. I was just along for the ride. In this book, we also had an AMAZING guest page by Aaron. I proudly still own this book. Mayhaps I’ll scan it and devote a post to it.
For the next one I’ll see about putting up some samples from my Junior College stint. That was more short lived due to an “incident” with a class and the demands of the professor. Suffice it to say, I ended up a history major after that. But of course I still like to doodle and illustrate. But to tease you, here is a sample from then. And it’s NUDITY!! (If you are under age, go look somewhere else).