Sunday, October 19, 2014

Comic Fest 2014!

We have come full circle at last! My very first "colorbyemi" blog post was a wrap-up of the second annual San Diego Comic Fest, and we have just survived the third!

Besides the craziness up in Artists Alley, there were many wonderful events after hours. On Friday night, we celebrated the 100th birthday anniversary of Jerry Siegal, the co-creator of Superman. The celebration took place in the Comic Fest Zone Cafe, where Jerry's daughter Laura Siegal Larson and actor Marc McClure honored his memory and legacy.

After some riveting Suprman trivia, Laura cut the beautiful cake, and Johnny and I had an amazing opportunity to talk with Marc McClure!

Johnny B. Gerardy and daughter Katherine with Marc McClure

On Saturday night, we went to the annual Masked Ball! Dancing, games, low lights and ghostly figures...what a beautiful event it was, thanks to Beata Csanadi!

And finally, during the masked ball, we enjoyed an outdoor performance by Digital Lizards of Doom. Electronic beats, great singing and guitar, a dancing gecko and an evil robot...what more could you want?

 And of course, other than all that fun stuff...was the REALLY fun stuff. Sitting in Artists Alley, a little sketching, a little selling, and a LOT of great conversations with artists and art lovers alike. I was honored to be in the Alley for a third time, among some of the greatest talent I've ever seen.

Photo by Monica M Sharp

With the weekend ending on a perfect 10, it's time to say good night.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Weekly Tumblr Roundup #1

Since my good friend Marty Davis moved his brushpen blog over to Tumblr, I decided to go ahead and start an account in order to follow along more easily. I'd been avoiding it for quite some time, as I'm not a big fan of collecting, then ditching, several social media obligations.

I actually think it might be a better format for me, but for now, let's put it on a trial basis, while saving this blog for a weekly roundup.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Back from the Dead...of Summer!

Yikes! Four months?

In my last blog post, I was excited for the arrival of the shirts I designed for the summer kids' program. The program began soon after, and what a summer it was! 175 kids and a good 15-25 weekly in my little art club. With the summer days all blending together in haze of field trips, art lessons, heat waves, and power outages, it's no wonder I abandoned the ol' blog.

BUT, with only 17 days left until the 3rd annual San Diego Comic Fest, there is much to do!

I've been trying my hand at colored pencils lately, and I'm planning to have this piece ready by then, featuring a character I created last year.

It's a fun undertaking. I've always wanted to do a full piece with this character.

That's all for now, but this piece should be done in a few days. Then maybe I can knock out another one or two before Comic Fest.

Back to work!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Summer's on the way!

It's been a rocky two weeks, with the Santa Ana wind-fueled wildfires in the neighborhood during a week-long heat wave, and some rushed art project planning for our upcoming summer program! Unfortunately there hasn't been a Thursday Art Club for two weeks for these reasons, but we'll pick it up again soon.

The summer t-shirts are in! I love designing these things, and this is my first time using white ink for the design. A few of the lines ended up being too thin, drowning in the white ink. I was pretty bummed, but I felt better after the kids saw the shirts and got excited.

As for today: a little sketching, a little planning, and short work week ahead, thanks to Memorial Day. Things are looking up!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Teaching Kids to Train Their Hands

I'm three days late for Thursday Art Club, but it was really just a group drawing session.

When the school kids watch me draw, they always ask me the same old ambiguous question: "Miss Emily, how do you do that?" And I usually have the same old ambiguous answer, "Practice."

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Thursday Art Club: New Chalk Pastels

My original plan for this Thursday was, admittedly, pretty lame. Let's not speak of it.

That's why I love it when little miracles come into the picture. Imagine my surprise on Monday when I discovered that someone had donated a gigantic bin full of chalk pastels!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thursday Art Club: You Can't Go Wrong with Kittens.

I had some heavy competitors today. The kids got to choose between ball games, a movie, Legos, iPads, and Art. Yet somehow I still got a crowd of fifteen! How did I compete? 

I just told them we were painting a kitten. They just couldn't resist.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Time to sketch

As it turns out, I'm going to have this tablet for a while, so I can finally resume some work that has been on the shelf, and do a few new sketches, too. It's a nice way to spend a Tuesday.

On Thursday the kids will be drawing and painting. I'm starting to run out of watercolor paper!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Thursday Art Club: It's All in the Details!

Spring Break is over, and Thursday Art Club resumed with a group of eighteen. Today we explored the difference a little extra detail can make!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Zoo Trip with Peter Csanadi!

Being a San Diego resident for the past 20+ years, you'd think I spend half my time on the beach or at our world-famous zoo. Otherwise what's the point of living here, right? But apparently I'm always too busy being a hermit to enjoy the benefits of our great city.

Thanks to my friend Peter forcing me to step into the sunlight for once, I spent the day realizing how little I really know about the San Diego Zoo.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Adventures in Storyboards

Yesterday's art club was all about my favorite subject: sequential art! The last time we used the blank comic pages, we focused on character & story development. This time I had different parameters: The story/character was totally their choice, but they had to include at least one closeup, one wide shot, and one irregular angle.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Free-for-all Watercolors

"Yay, Miss Emily is letting us paint whatever we want!" 
Translation: Miss Emily completely forgot to plan a project.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Streamzoo favorites

I'm far from a pro photographer, but I've always enjoyed taking photos and sharing them. For some reason I never got into Instagram, though, and I instead joined a photo site called Picplz, which shut down in July of 2012. Most of the photographers I followed, streaming from all over the world, moved on to Streamzoo.

Unfortunately this company is also closing its doors today due to financial difficulties. It really is a shame, because when I took the time to sort through all the selfies, food photos, and overboard filters, it was a surprisingly personal and eye-opening window into other countries and cultures. After giving it some thought, though, I decided that I'm not going to join any other photo sites. I feel like it will benefit my overall state of mind to have one less social media "obligation" on my plate.

Anyway, I had a chance to download all the old snapshots I uploaded over the years. (I'll spare you the selfies) Here are a few favorites.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Tabletop Drawing

I decided to dig some of my dusty toys out of their box and put them to good use: giving the kids their first experience drawing human (and mutant) figures from a tabletop model.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Thursday Art Club: More fashion!

Thursday Art Club is back in full swing! My average number of kids came crawling back to me when they heard that we would be making fashion design books. After giving them a sufficient guilt trip for ditching me last week, (not really), the fun began.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Art Rage 3: Loose Ends: Desert Rider

As I've said before, right now it's uncertain whether or not I will still have the tablet in the near future. So I'm continuing to complete some of the paintings I have allowed to sit in a folder of procrastination, collecting digital dust.

This old sketch has come a long way, and other than a few I-don't-feel-like-it-today details I can add with Photoshop, I think I can put it to bed in Art Rage.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Ghost Town/Muppets

Today I had a little step-by-step about "drawing light" planned, using colored pencils, chalk, and black construction paper; a repeat project that was fairly successful the first time around.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Summer's coming!

Time for my 5th year of designing the summer t-shirt for the kiddos. Or has it been 6 years? I can't remember. But I've never had so many kids yelling at me about what to put in a drawing. The shirts are going to be a dark color with white ink, so I have a bit more inverting and cleanup to do before I turn it in.

After this, it's time to plan 10 weeks of Summer Art Club. It never ends!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Art Rage 3: Getting back into it

I may not have the tablet for much longer, so I'm finishing up some old sketches. This one is almost there.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Takin' a break!

It's gonna be a looong Presidents Week. I'll be back when it all blows over.

Art Lab: Barbara Marker's Art from the Heart

This post is a bit late, as this event happened Saturday night, but it was an amazing time and has to be shared. Two nights ago, Johnny and I attended our lovely and talented friend Barbara Marker's exhibition of her work in her own show, Art from the Heart.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Happy Valentines Day!

Love and creativity are in the air in Thursday Art Club! Valentine's Day has never been my favorite holiday, but it's fun to celebrate with know, when it's all about the candy.

I had a pretty flimsy project planned, but I decided instead to improvise. I got some pink, red, and white paper, some scissors and glue, and some coloring stuff. Then I pointed everything out, and gave them free reign. This was a bit of a gamble, because without enough structure to our art time, they can get restless and bored. The result?

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Studio Space part 2

There's something for everyone around our studio.

Spidey hanging 3 feet from the wall,

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Studio Space part 1

If there's one thing a macro lens has taught me, it's that I don't dust nearly as much as I think I do. That being said, here are some close up looks at the creative space I share with artist Johnny Beware.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Watercolor Fish

Back to basics. With almost every group of kids that have been in my art clubs over the years, there's one activity that they always get excited about: painting.

Photo by Sofia Han

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Macro Mania

I forgot how much fun macro photography was. It's nice to have more to work with than just a dinky smartphone camera.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Weekend Sketches and a New Toy

It was a short weekend, and I've been sick for most of it. Thank goodness I don't have cable or I might have been tempted to watch the Superb Owl. So what else do you do when you're under the weather and stuck on the couch for two days straight?

1. Pout.
2. Watch Netflix.
3. Draw.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Thursday Art Club: Super Stories!

For art club today, I borrowed the "Mad Libs" method of story writing from the LUX event we were invited to last week. But because my kids are a bit younger, and seem to be partial to fashion design, I altered the project considerably to please the crowd.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Thursday Art Club Returns: Speed Drawing and Sketchbooks

Thursday Art Club is back! Today I decided to challenge the kids a bit. We did an activity called "speed drawing," the result of which was five small sketches, all taking different amounts of time.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Comic Artists hosted by the Lux Art Institute!

Yesterday, I drove down to the Cardiff area to join LUX Art Institute's T{w}eensday Art Event. It was a great opportunity to inspire and enlighten young artists who love to read and draw comics.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Water-logged Sketchbook

I would have made a new year's resolution to keep up with this blog, but I know myself too well. Another hiatus will most definitely happen in the future, so there's no point denying it. I'd rather live in the now.

I caught a friend of mine trying to throw out a water-damaged sketchbook a few weeks ago. I hate to see paper go to waste, so I adopted the little guy.