Tuesday, September 30, 2008


So many days since I last wrote. *shakes head*

I have a great excuse, of course. I've been busy.

The Youth Animation Project is drawing to a close, with only a week and a half left for us to get out CV's/Resumes together, fill out scholarship and grant applications and apply for school. I'm actively burning my animation to a DVD for submission to Fairytales Film Festival (Which I'm sitting on the selection committee with this year!) and figuring out how to get my high school transcript.

I have a lot on my plate as far as my activism goes. In order to ensure I get a pay cheque and the two giant projects we're taking on actually happen I have to do a lot of work in just a few short days. I'm happy to have the YAP staff right at my fingertips. It's a dream come true! I have little helper elves being paid to look over what I've written, ensure it's done the best it can be, and give me ideas on other places I can seek funding from.

I'm pretty content right now with how things are going. I'm stoked for the screening next week, even if we will be competing with Margaret Cho. We postered the city yesterday and through Word of Mouth and the power of Facecrack I'm sure we'll have an incredible turn out. Besides, it's free. Who doesn't like free stuff?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Clay Figurines

I chose to do a claymation for my animation. This is because I've always loved claymation and because I'm a natural sculptor. Sculpting is one of those talents I was just born with and I knew I'd be able to portray my animation best through the medium of Plasticine. I did character sketches of what i was going to create, something I normally would never waste my time on because I create best in the initial thing I make. Trying to remodel and trying to duplicate just doesn't work for me. However, the development of the characters sketches allowed for me to explore the character design and feel quite a bit more.
I posted photos of my completed figurines and quote suddenly was bombarded with requests for them. One such request came from Newsboy of X92.9FM here in Calgary. He commissioned me to create a figurine likeness of himself as a coyote and I set to work. I really like the end result and apparently he does too, having made it his Facebook profile picture.
I plan on continuing to make these figures and depending on the size and accessories they will cost anywhere between $40 and $75.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Getting inked!

I'm a huge fan of tattoos. Initially I was hesitant to get any because I quite like my body as it is and couldn't imagine there would be much I'd want permanently on my skin. I tossed around a few ideas in my late teenager years, before I could even get one. I liked the idea of a turtle or wolf, two animals I've always had an affinity for.

When I turned eighteen I went into my first parlour to ask questions and was greeted with a less than savoury attitude. I wanted something small and was merely inquiring as to the cost of a tattoo, but the artist seemed put off by me and his response was hostile. He informed me that it wasn't judged by size (A total lie, by the way...because the size of the tattoo is in direct correlation to the amount of time it will take and tattoo artists charge by the hour.) and that my design idea of a wolf silhouette was too detailed and small and would look terrible in a matter of years.

My next attempt wasn't until I was nineteen and the approach of a cold winter was reminding me of how much I hate November. I wanted to do something awesome, just for me, to celebrate who I was. I messed around with designs for months and came up with a simple one for my forearm. I drew it there for three months straight, until I felt naked when it washed off and I was certain it was a permanently altering piece of work I wouldn't regret.

The day I went to get my tattoo I was quite nervous but excited. I didn't know what the pain would be like and I was worried it would be unbearable. Two of my oldest and dearest friends accompanied me on the adventure and I suspect all three of us were surprised to see me, normally a wuss, completely blissed out under the gun. The sensation is truly indescribable and the meaning behind a piece I designed myself being put somewhere that it would always remind me of my inner strength made for a profound experience.

I have since added to my collection and recently delved into a leg sleeve, something I've mentioned before. This piece is the first I haven't designed for myself and choosing to let another artist create something for me caused great anxiety at first. I absolutely love my artist though and she really managed to capture what I wanted in the representation of three of the most influential and powerful animals in my life: A dragon, a wolf and a turtle.

I just had the colour started. The turtle and wolf are complete and in early October I'm having the dragon done. Late November is the set date to finish it off, touch ups and background, as long as time and money allow.

I love the artwork I've chosen to decorate my body with. I totally recommend it if you've ever thought about it. take your time to choose something meaningful and beautiful and choose an artist you know will do the best representation of what you'd like, but totally take the plunge.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

The latest round of custom shoes...
I did the pair with the cat as a gift for a friends graduation. She totally loves them. I enjoyed getting the custom laces. I'm so used to working with bright, vibrant colours so i was surprised when i picked black/grey/brown argyle laces. But I think the look is perfect.
The other pair were a custom order from a friend for her brother. I'm totally pleased with them because I normally use the inspiration of knowledge for the person I'm creating art for to make anything decent. I have never before met him and only had his website to go off of (www.52instruments.com) but I feel I've created something really unique and encompassing of who he is. I've been told by many people who do know him that they are incredible and capture his style perfectly.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Nature of an Artist

Since a very young age I have aspired to create fantastic art. My brother and dad are incredible at sketching something quickly and efficiently and by watching them I was able to learn a lot about proportions and shading. My brother drew dinosaurs and my dad drew planes...I drew dragons. I would take sheets of paper and tape them end to end so they encircled my entire room in a long, thin poster. Each sheet had a different dragon on it. Any dragon at all was fair game for me to experiment with my techniques. I evolved the shading of muscles or the tilt and turn of a twisting body, the life given to an eye through a shiny spot...and I learned a lot.

No matter how uninspired I may be feeling I am always able to sit down and sketch out a dragon, any dragon. This is my root of art...the initial step I took towards discovering my potential.
Tattoo by Karrie Arthurs of BlackBirdCustomStudios.com