Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Some Recent Work, Goals Reviewed, and New Ideas

Boy, it's been a while. Happy New Year for starters! And belated Merry Christmas since I missed that too. I've been buried up to my neck in work, and for that I am very very thankful.

Here are a few images from various projects that I hope you'll enjoy.

I thought it'd be fun to see how well I lived up to my goals for 2008 in this post. Here they are, with the results in italics.

  • I will find a publisher or self publish at least one art journal compilation this year. I didn't quite get this one, but uh, I'm still working on it!
  • A solid deal for a children's book will happen. If you count coloring books then yes, I've finished two and am working on my third. It's been a very enjoyable experience so far and I'm hoping to put out a few every year.
  • I will have at least two one-man hangings in small non-gallery venues. I'm cheating a little bit here, since two have already been arranged. Yeah, this was an easy one since, as I mentioned, two were already arranged. I ended showing my work in two cafes (one of them twice), and three local gyms (an odd location, but the response was very encouraging and I was happy to have my work available for all kinds of folks to see, folks who might not normally step into an art gallery). The icing on the cake though, was having a piece in the Totoro Forest Project, which was shown at Pixar and is currently displayed in a museum (Cartoon Art Museum in SF)!
  • I will fill up three journals, whether they're full of drawings, writings, or disasters. I barely finished my wide format journal. I ended up getting too precious with it after all, which is my fear with every journal.... the good side of this is I didn't tear out a single page except for one, which was made up of obscenities a drunk at a football game scribbled in. I did fill up a couple other books that carried over from years past, as well as some very small spiral bound notebooks.
  • Heavy development on my graphic novel will begin now that I know what I want to write about. I'm still holding off on this story, I want to get it right. I decided ,instead, to make 2008 the year I learn to do sequential storytelling and to wield a brush for inking, and my ongoing webcomic project (www.OneSwoopFell) are the fruits of this endeavor.
  • My studio will finally have overhead lighting. (Done. Thanks Father-In-Law, for helping a home improvement-challenged artist).
  • I will own an Open Box M. I chose what I feel to be the far superior choice, based on my own demands. An Alla Prima Pochade box. This was a treat to myself with my very last paycheck at my studio job before I went full-time freelance.
  • Alex and I will travel to Europe at least once. We're looking forward to a hopeful Italy trip in May. We went to Italy. You can read about that in this old blog post.
  • I'll spend more time outside of the studio for work, whether it's finding a way to paint during cold weather, sitting in cafes, aimless walks, or mini-trips in and around the Bay. I always feel like I can do a better job at this. And I don't feel like I made much of an improvement from the year before or the year before that.
  • Alex and I will also spend more time climbing outdoors this coming season, which leads me to the next category. We did get outside a lot more in 2008. My highlight of the year (tied with Italy) was my first trip down to Bishop. Here's that entry.)

I will train harder and develop a six-pack for the first time in my life, because Lord knows I don't have many chances left. My cat has unwittingly been dragged into this with me, as she somewhat resembles a bowling ball at the moment. I'm sad to report that neither I nor my cat have improved much in this department. Hey, there's always the new year.

The 2009 Goal

So what are the goals for this new year? Easy, I'm going to roll Art and Adventure into one category. See, you guys have been gracious enough to put up with my occasional whining about my wanderlust. Well, it's time I blend two things I treasure dearly into a single ambition. If 2008 was the year to learn to do comics, then 2009 is the year to learn travel art/writing, if such a genre exists (comics and illustration will still be there,of course). I've seen a good number of travelogues by artists in various formats, but my aim is to do something a little different. Something a little less self-involved. I can't really describe it any further, but hopefully I'll have something to show soon so you know what I mean.

With that said, I'm going to be retiring this blog very shortly and starting up a new blog. Stay tuned for the new website address and what I hope will be a more engaging and entertaining format for this latest experiment.

Here's one last teaser as a thanks for reading this far (or scrolling down very quickly).


Unknown said...

Cool blog Mike, I'm completely in love with One Swoop Fell

I recently made a blog as wel!
Wanna trade links? :) I already got yours hehe

JimmyG said...

Can't wait to see more of the new stuff Mike, looks really cool! Now as for your 2009 goals, I am willing to help you out and make the supreme sacrifice to selflessly (selfishly) accompany you on many Art Adventures. But only cuz you're a friend ; )

Anonymous said...

Hiiiii!!!! It's your crazy 'friend' from the interwebs/SF... it's funny I was just thinking to myself the other day I haven't gone around and bugged that Mike guy in a while for more cool art and I've been wondering what you've been up to - I'm totally excited to see the fruition of your new projects... don't keep us in the dark for too long!!! congrats on being busy with WORK!

Tom Scholes said...


littlebird said...

your animals are really cute.