Whatchya Workin' On, O Creatives?


Unfurl your egos and your hopes that someone not a family member will tell you that your creative endeavors are not being wasted. What are you working on in your creative lives that you feel you want to share with the rest of the world?

I recently started drawing again after something like a decade since I was making webcomics, and about five years since I sold off my wacom tablet. Just pen sketches with a lovely cheap Morning Glory fountain pen.

It’s unlikely I’ll go back to making webcomics tho. The wild west of 1999-2005 was a long time ago now and the web is pretty much settled around a few big platforms. Gone are the days of getting cheap hosting and trying to win over the masses with your spunk. I’m enjoying just drawing for the hell of it and not needing to worry about regular updating for a fickle crowd who much prefer video game jokes anyway.

I’m always still taking pictures of my experiences as an expat though (edit: Instagram “influencer” spam got to the point that I deleted my account to deny them just one single space to self-promote cuz fuck them). One thing I like about photography is that a shit shot only took a fraction of a second to make but a shit drawing took hours. Yet I have no hesitation to trash a shit drawing but a shit photo I run through GIMP “just one more time” to get it to look good.

Anyway… Title.^^^ Do share.


Random Silly Grins

Trying to put on a production of Peter Pan with the students of my school. Selected this one because my boss informed me that she wanted to include all the students and Pan is full of groups which you can shuffle people into, pirates, lost boys, (Indians and Mermaids too, if I hadn’t cut them out).

Oy. I’ve got a fairly dependable Wendy and Peter Pan and I’m playing Hook. No one else reliably shows up for rehearsals. Hopefully with summer vacation things will improve.



I’m blocked. I find it very easy to be creative when I have something prompting me in a specific direction, but that’s almost never the case. I’m normally working in a vacuum, paralyzed by the infinite possibilities that presents. I feel like I need a reason to make art (other than “it’s fun”) to give me direction, even if that reason is trivial.



Wow. This just made me miss how much I used to draw. I loved it! But I’ve done next to nothing lately between depression and work overload. I did do a few first-round drafts of vector graphics, to possibly be used as top-down 1:300 scale units in a wargame:

But other than that it’s been a few years since I really drew. (Ouch!) Back then, I put some of my stuff at http://falkon1313.deviantart.com/gallery/ and I want to get back to doing that and the pencil drawings that I did before that which were better. Now to make time for it…



I like the drawings, is your webcomic still up?



Long stuffed down the memory hole thankfully.



A number of works on the go. The ones that are most focused at present (given that a work can hang fire for many years) are a multi-movement sonata in C for harpsichord, of which movements I, IV & V (finale) are posted in various stages of completion:

The first movement more or less wrote itself, which is unusual for me. Interestingly enough, it started as an example I wrote to illustrate an answer to a question on music.stackexchange.com, something to effect of “Is it possible to use the cycle of fifths in the Phrygian mode?” (Found here. I finally got pissed off enough about Stack Exchange’s bureaucratic ways that I nuked my account, hence the system-generated user name. The “Prof Steve” referred to in the answer not only nuked his account, but nuked his posts as well, quite a bit before I lost my stick.)

I have sketches for an Adagio in E Phrygian and a Gigue in C major that will form movements II & III respectively, so the overall arch will be C Phrygian (secondary keys of E phrygian, F major & G♯/A♭ Phrygian, plus major mode at certain cadential points) - E Phrygian (I suspect G major as the secondary key) - C major (conventional C -> G movement) - A Phrygian (with a strong hint of F major/minor) - C major (E♭ as the secondary key).

@Haystack, the first movement shows one way of dealing with block - use an exercise to get started, then pound on the germ of an idea that the exercise provides until the idea becomes expressive. (The other movements show another way of coping - have many sketches on the go. :smiley:)

I’ve also got a pair of chorale preludes on the go, a second one on *Aus tiefer Not schrei’ ich zu dir", and this:

Some of these sketches do a good job illustrating why it’s a good idea to have a lot of sketches on the go. The Gigue for the sonata, for instance, has been kicking around for over a decade. The organ prelude on Alle Menschen müssen sterben here wrote itself while the two larger preludes were hanging fire. I find that, if I have to interrupt a piece to do something else, it is very hard to pick up where I left off - the piece has to “ripen” then, it seems. The interruption doesn’t have to be long to derail me; it just needs to demand my full attention. <sigh>


Ask me anything. I have died twice in 2017

I’ve been making skirts out of old jeans and shorts. “Raggedy Sheek” or “Raggedy Chick” would be my label name, if I had one. Photos to follow of completed items.



Lots and lots of (at least partially, sometimes fully) experimental, (usually but not always) ambient electronic music.

Currently I’m up to 142 tracks finished in 2017.


YouTube playlist

And building up a modular synthesizer, but not really DIY. There’s an “art” to module selection I guess, in that sense of the word, but it’s more collecting than creating.



Two friends and myself have been putting on large-scale weekend-long interactive horror theater productions (okay, LARPs) based on the world of HP Lovecraft for the last few years, and just did our latest. It was a good year-and-a-half of work as we made all of the props, costuming, effects, music, etc ourselves, and we had 60 paid players. Very little sleep for months beforehand. So much effort, so much money. We had a 15-foot high 30-foot long monster puppeted by six people.

And we’ve gotten almost no feedback. I think it was underwhelming.

We’ve got another one scheduled for a year and a half from now, but I’m genuinely not sure if I can do that to myself again.



From top to botttom: Vintage 1970s men’s orange tag Levi’s bellbottoms, long skirt, original length 36, waist 29; ladies’ 1980s “London” label jeans, long skirt with open front, size 9/10; ladies’ Tommy Hilfiger jeans, short skirt, size 7; men’s Izod cargo-style shorts, waist 32 (these, @William_George)



I was trying to make a 3D model of the Djinn Chair (as seen on the Space Station in 2001: A Space Odyssey) in Blender (because free is all I can afford).

[Insert picture of Leonard Rossiter as a Russian space scientist here]

But the thing has acquired a glitch that won’t be fixed, no matter what I do. Move the vertices in case something is sticking out more than it should, flip the normals, flip them back, remove the surfaces and replace them, remove the vertices and replace them, whatever I do, the thing keeps showing:

And because I’m mirroring the construction the glitch appears on the other side as well, ensuring that it will show up from practically every angle. The back-rest has issues too, so maybe I should just start over…



What do you recommend for learning to construct basic figures? I’m familiar with the 8 head model and the technique of building upon a wifeframe/stick figure, but there’s just so much nuance in faces and figures that I end up spending lots of time on the details—altering curves, fixing proportions, etc. I haven’t quite learned the trick of simplifying a figure down to its essential gesture and expression.



I must admit I don’t use Blender for figures at all. For mostly-realistic figures I use Poser (sometimes DAZ Studio).

If I was wanting to do cartoonish figures, I’d probably d/l a cartoon figure for Poser and hack it to look like what I wanted, I guess.

But it sounds to me like your problem isn’t so much a Blender technique thing, as a problem with your approach. I’d recommend working with pencil and paper before going near your computer. Hash out the proportion and expression on paper so that you have something to refer to other than your fuzzy mental picture. At the very least, depending on your skill and level of self-criticism, you’ll have something you don’t want to emulate. :wink:

(Note: this isn’t something I do as much as I should, but drawing roughs is part of the recommended procedure that art school tried to beat into me for any graphics project.)



I got the original idea from this book:

I included a pic of the inside of the front cover because I think the name Rosie Killeen is about one of the most Irish names I’d ever seen. I’ve had this book since I was 12 or so, and it shows! The copyright year is 1974, and it was published by Scholastic Book Services, a company responsible for about 50 percent (at least) of the kids’/young adults’ books in our household. And my brother was born in 1957, me in 1964 - we got books for birthdays and Xmas, but the rest of the time it was garage/rummage/yard sales and SCS. Oh yeah, and the Brandeis Book sale that took place every year at Northland Mall in Southfield, MI.



Actually I’m doing all my work in traditional media. So many erasers have died so young.



I think it looks like a trademark logo of some sort. That’s what I thought it was, when I first saw the photo.



I have a short story? novella (yeah, closer to what I want) that I want to finish, but I haven’t figured out which character is going to be the MacGuffin. SO frustrating. But, at least I have names for them, and somewhat-formed personalities.

At that point, however, I’m all, “Well, I don’t want to make it too easy for people to figure out who the person is who got this other person started on their vocation”. So I dither. Yuck.



I’m familiar with the 8 head model and the technique of building upon a wifeframe/stick figure, but there’s just so much nuance in faces and figures that I end up spending lots of time on the details—altering curves, fixing proportions, etc.

I regret to inform you that the following advice will be lame.

  1. Practice, practice, practice. Even the crappiest of my pen sketches at those links in my post wouldn’t be possible without the thirty odd years of drawing as a hobby that came before it.
  2. Drawing from life can really help train your eye and your hand. Accept that it won’t be accurate. That’s what photography is for and even that is a collection of lies.
  3. Trace over the art of people who are better than you are. Or at least break their art down so you can see how they did it. Trace a photo or two as well just so you can get a feel for how flexible and easily distorted the human body actually is. Don’t pass off a tracing as your art. You’ll get caught
  4. Aim for “good enough”. Not being able to match what I wanted to draw with what I did draw was another thing that got me out of webcomics. Thing is, no one but me knew that I fucked up.

And I think this is very important: The intersection between laziness and fucking up is called “Your Art Style”

I think point 1 is the most important part of it all.

@NelC’s suggesting is pretty good too.



@Lucy_Gothro I’d wear those if societal norms were different.

Do the software have some forums or a reddit sub that can get you some help? (My “helpful mum” advice for the day)

I find folks are a bit too jaded these days due to the amazingness at their fingertips. Trying to explain how the graphics for Final Fantasy 7 were mind-blowing to someone for who Horizon Zero Dawn is the norm? Impossible.

Is there a market for that or is this for your own amusement? My knowledge of electronic music starts with Giorgio Moroder sort of ends somewhere around Dillon Francis.