Auwu

Friday, 17 May 2013 08:14 am
keaalu: A hummingbird (Haeckel birdie)
A quick "mockup", I suppose, for how this little fellow will ultimately come together. I had to take a copy of the original and then cut it up and assemble it, as the wings are actually separate images. (Totally nothing to do with the way I fudged my positioning on the original page, and the wingtip went off the edge. D'oh!)

This is going to be a biggish picture, as a "title page" for the short story I'm writing to go along with it. I have a couple of other pictures half-drawn (or planned) to add later; I've been wanting to shamelessly plagiarise have a go at Anna's really dramatic shading style and was going to use one of those to try it on. (I'm normally too much of a chicken, and have horrible tentative wishy-washy shading most of the time.)

This is (what Lii thinks is) an auwu, a kiravai pet. It's actually something else (nb: NOT a phoenix) in disguise, helping him escape his captors in the catacombs, but he doesn't work that out until the end.
keaalu: (no rules in art)
Just a quick and dirty little mockup in Paint, to see if it looks how I want before I commit to recreating it in real life. (I'm going to stitch it, I think.) It's only the background of a larger picture, although I quite like the look of it anyway and might end up using it "as is" as well. (The little white dots are just where the "holes" were on my template. They won't be on the finished thing.)
Image under cut )

In other news, I have been inspired by the project [livejournal.com profile] muffins_of_god is participating in, and wondered if writing some shorter things might kick my writing brain back into gear.

This "mandala" was going to be part of some art associated with one of the stories. It's quite an old idea, although I don't know if I ever posted anything about it publically (I think I came up with it back in Uni, which was before I had an LJ) - a kidnapped kiravai child (who grows up to become one of my old semi-regular characters) is helped to safety by a creature from their mythology.

Edit: For goodness sake, LJ. Why is it SO HARD to post pictures (in a way that is not distorted or too small to see) from the scrapbook now? The old scrapbook was so much more user friendly. >:(

"Peafins"

Saturday, 22 December 2012 11:06 pm
keaalu: A hummingbird (Haeckel birdie)
I revised my "peafin" (yes, peacock-griffin)!

I didn't like the way that the anatomy had ended up so strangely "cropped" - at the time, I didn't mind that the tail went off the edge, because the only shapes that Vistaprint offered were return address labels (the little thin oblong stickers), which was my reason for drawing everything in such long thin narrow oblongs in the first place. Since they started to offer circles and bigger rectangles and ovals, and I wanted to put my pictures on stickers - mainly to be gifts but also who knows maybe someday sell them? - it... bothered me, that I had such strange crops in awkward places.

Basically, I am quite the perfectionist when it comes down to a lot of things - maybe not the remotest bit tidy, but I can't have anything be a rush job. (At work? Yes, I will straighten up a label on a box and re-fold a leaflet if it's not been done completely square. ¬_¬ And my writing REALLY bothers me if it's not as perfect as my current level of skill can get it.) So naturally I didn't feel happy about giving things out with STRANGELY SLICED OFF TAILS.

So I spent a good chunk of today, while the rain poured down and foiled my desire to go out and buy buffet foods for work, carefully filling out the cropped bits and giving my birdie a whole tail and wings and fingers. He's not perfect, but he's better than he was. :)

Related to this semi-kneejerk perfectionism... Is there a way of choosing the thumbnail that shows up in LJ Scrapbook, does anyone know? My scrapbook has gone from tiny widdly pictures that at least gave some idea of what the picture was, to ridiculous nonsense like this:


Plus, it seems to have broken all my thumbnails in EVERY old entry I made - everything has been oddly stretchd and smushed into a 100x100px square. Thanks, LJ. ¬_¬

Santa Thrust?

Monday, 10 December 2012 08:17 am
keaalu: Clear icicles dangling down on a chilly background (Icicles)
The peanut gallery (well, one peanut in particular) says SMILE MORE, SANTA, you'll scare the kiddies!
Thrust says WHY SHOULD HE SMILE, how's he gonna look like a handsome, debonair gent for the ladies NOW?

I think he should just keep righteous vengeance in mind. A certain seeker might end up looking like Rudolph, after all, when he gets a damn good punch in the faceplates.

Edit: WHY DIDN'T I USE THIS FOR THE INSIDE OF MY CARD THIS YEAR, argh. I actually don't mind how it looks, for a change. XP

Ammut

Friday, 9 November 2012 04:31 pm
keaalu: (What?)
Ammut I was aiming for the sort of... Aztec/Maya/Egyptian style I used for these wee beasties, again. Not sure I managed it, precisely, but I still like how she turned out.

I have another handful of Egyptimayan-mashup pictures to finish off, so there might be more like this on the way - if I ever get them finished. (I was going to suggest people give me ideas for other creatures to doodle up, but I'll blatantly never get them finished - I mean, this took me months already - so.)

Edit: Only 16159 words: I must get on. I want to be at 17000 or so by the end of the day - I'm building up a little buffer so that when I'm too tired to work on it (because I've been looking after the pre-regs), I can collapse and sleep with a clear conscience.

Ammut

Friday, 9 November 2012 04:31 pm
keaalu: A picture of a box of pencils, with the word prolific, to show how busy I am! (Prolific pencils)
Ammut I was aiming for the sort of... Aztec/Maya/Egyptian style I used for these wee beasties, again. Not sure I managed it, precisely, but I still like how she turned out.

I have another handful of Egyptimayan-mashup pictures to finish off, so there might be more like this on the way - if I ever get them finished. (I was going to suggest people give me ideas for other creatures to doodle up, but I'll blatantly never get them finished - I mean, this took me months already - so.)

Windchaser updates

Tuesday, 30 October 2012 01:07 am
keaalu: (Raindrops)
( Fake LJ cut to content )

Disclaimer: I know, LJ cuts are not so user friendly (imho) now and expand directly on the page. Pretend this is 5 years ago, when LJ was less rubbish.

Followers of my LJ will probably have seen all the art anyway, so it's not terribly exciting. Let me know if I flubbed any code anywhere, please. ^^

Christmas Card angst

Wednesday, 17 October 2012 08:32 am
keaalu: (Xmas foxie!)
This rant is mostly hyperbole - I just felt the need to vent.

Those of you who have said "yes!" to a Christmas Card? You may just get cute nonchristmassy alien critters instead of my original idea, because I am seriously doing my nut trying to get this drawing to look right. >_< *shakefist*

I have spent hoooouuuuurrrs on the pencils and I'm still not satisfied. I should have probably suspected it was a bad idea when the mirror I was using to flip the image, to check the anatomy, slid off the table and broke. ¬_¬

It's got to the point now where I'm allllmoooost satisfied. *crosses fingers* I think I have spent the last two hours on: scan, resize, flip, examine, swear, tweak drawing, re-scan, lather rinse and repeat. It's taken me five hours to realise that uh, the reason one character looks so strange is that he seems to exist on AT LEAST THREE separate planes, none of which line up. *headdesk*

On a related note... I wish the printers would make up their mind what size the cards were meant to actually be. You go to the Christmas cards page, and they give you the option to select by size: 5"x7" or 4"x8". I'm not sure why they quote the sizes in inches, because everything else on the site is in mm, but whatever, I didn't design the site. So, I selected 5"x7", as these cards are folded. And it goes to the page for 182mmx117mm.

182x117 =/= 5"x7"
¬_¬

As soon as my sample robin cards arrive, I'm getting a friggin' ruler out.

Edit: And on the subject of robins... Woo! SHIPPED
keaalu: A hummingbird (Haeckel birdie)
I found my original post! December 2008, ouch. But I at least got a couple finished off!



Enfield    Kelpie     An enfield (left) and a kelpie (right).



As well as a borough in London, the enfield is a heraldic beastie, made up of fox, eagle, and wolf, occasionally with some greyhound and lion in it too. The kelpie, or each uisge, is the carnivorous water horse of celtic myth. You could always identify a kelpie by the sand and shells in its mane. (Presumably, if you dared to get close enough?)

As ever, I'm somewhat dissatisfied by the enfield's blobby "magic" and will probably rework it.



To answer Anna's question (I can't get on FA right now): they're tall, skinny pictures because that way they'll fit on a particular brand of stickers. I like to get things printed so I can hide them inside things I put in the post (like... Christmas cards, haha) as little extras.
keaalu: Keyboard with the word GO on one key (Go!)
Sooo, remember this?

The Wrong Trousers Yeah. Oops!

Poor Whitesides. He seems to have tripped over and fell into the wrong fandom. (It’s still Hasbro, what’s he whining about?) This is NOT the transformation he is familiar with.

He says “Longbeam wouldn’t put up with this, why don’t you go pick on HER every once in a while.” Uh, because she wouldn’t put up with it? (You, on the other hand, just roll over and let me do it, love.)

…I’m not sure what look I was trying to achieve here. Policebike-pony-sparklebot-whatever? He’s not a cyborg – more like, halfway between synthoid and full robot. WHY AM I OVERDESCRIBING THIS. It’s just stupid. Pls to be living with this fact.

No, I am not a fan of “My Little Pony” (although that much was probably obvious by my atrocious drawing) – I don’t have anything against it, but magic multicoloured tiny horses aren’t exactly my thing, any more. (The last time I watched MLP was in 1986, when the film came out. I was… four? Maybe five? Holy target demographic, Batman!)

...I forgot to post it here: Anyone up fort a Christmas Card this year? I'M TRYINGG to get the design done, ON TIME FOR ONCE, this year
keaalu: (Scary creepy unicorn)
Sooo, remember this?

The Wrong Trousers Yeah. Oops!

Poor Whitesides. He seems to have tripped over and fell into the wrong fandom. (It’s still Hasbro, what’s he whining about?) This is NOT the transformation he is familiar with.

He says “Longbeam wouldn’t put up with this, why don’t you go pick on HER every once in a while.” Uh, because she wouldn’t put up with it? (You, on the other hand, just roll over and let me do it, love.)

…I’m not sure what look I was trying to achieve here. Policebike-pony-sparklebot-whatever? He’s not a cyborg – more like, halfway between synthoid and full robot. WHY AM I OVERDESCRIBING THIS. It’s just stupid. Pls to be living with this fact.

No, I am not a fan of “My Little Pony” (although that much was probably obvious by my atrocious drawing) – I don’t have anything against it, but magic multicoloured tiny horses aren’t exactly my thing, any more. (The last time I watched MLP was in 1986, when the film came out. I was… four? Maybe five? Holy target demographic, Batman!)

Very excited!

Thursday, 27 September 2012 08:28 am
keaalu: (yayskai)
Two exciting things have happened this week! XD (And no, I'm not talking about my two days off, because it'll actually be three days come tomorrow.)

Thing one: I have been sent awesome giftart!
Trice Trice by Anna Ghislaine ([livejournal.com profile] garedeuropa/Website)
I love the whole painterly style to this, and the way it's all glowwy; I've always enjoyed her bright, almost surrealist cartoony style, and of course predilection for monsters and weird creatures. (Original link)

Thing two: Guess what I found on my doormat when I got home yesterday!
Pics under the cut! )
Lastly: Christmas Cards!
I have been rubbish at getting them ready on time for the last two years, so I've started creating them already for this year. Show of hands - anyone want one?

Beaded Butterfly

Wednesday, 22 August 2012 01:14 pm
keaalu: Three colourful speech balloons (Coloured balloons)
Beaded Butterfly
I made this a few days ago, for my Mum's birthday, so now it's safe to upload it. :) It's supposed to be a handbag charm (or similar) hence the little lobster clasp on the top.

It's based on the malachite butterfly, which is one of my favourites - technically, the brown and green is the pattern on the underside of the wing, the top is a rather more dramatic black and bright green, but I prefer the underwing colours.

When you pick it up, the wings fold up like on an actual butterfly; I'm not sure if it was intentional. XD (The instructions on how to make it were in a book, but I didn't follow them too closely. It was probably not intentional, all their examples lay nice and flat.)

I spent ages charting the pattern for this, and of course, the fact it's not "traditional" beadwork like peyote means the pattern didn't come out like I'd charted. Drat.

Edit: this was a bit of a "rough and ready" post before I headed out to work this morning, as I wanted to see how it looked when I set my LJ to crosspost automatically (to Facebook and Twitter), but I think the only thing it crossposted PROPERLY to was my Twitter. I can't even see it on Facebook, except that there's a mysterious reference to me somehow being in Colchester recently. ¬_¬ I've tidied it up now, I think.

Edit2: I just crossposted this to the craftgrrl LJ community - I've never posted there before, and it just took me about 45 minutes of editing and changing and editing and rewriting to pluck up the courage to actually click POST. XD

I'm such a coward. This is part of the reason why I never commission people, even when they're offering free drawings - I get shy and awkward about saying "OOH ME, MEME, PICK ME, NIGEL", and end up chickening out.

Edit3: Haha. I just realised: it's Whitesides, in butterfly form.

Bead butterfly

Wednesday, 22 August 2012 07:27 am
keaalu: (bee nom)
Beaded Butterfly
I made this a few days ago, for my Mum's birthday, so now it's safe to upload it. :) It's supposed to be a handbag charm (or similar) hence the little lobster clasp on the top.

It's based on the malachite butterfly, which is one of my favourites - technically, the brown and green is the pattern on the underside of the wing, the top is a rather more dramatic black and bright green, but I prefer the underwing colours.

When you pick it up, the wings fold up like on an actual butterfly; I'm not sure if it was intentional. XD (The instructions on how to make it were in a book, but I didn't follow them too closely. It was probably not intentional, all their examples lay nice and flat.)

I spent ages charting the pattern for this, and of course, the fact it's not "traditional" beadwork like peyote means the pattern didn't come out like I'd charted. Drat.

Edit: this was a bit of a "rough and ready" post before I headed out to work this morning, as I wanted to see how it looked when I set my LJ to crosspost automatically (to Facebook and Twitter), but I think the only thing it crossposted PROPERLY to was my Twitter. I can't even see it on Facebook, except that there's a mysterious reference to me somehow being in Colchester recently. ¬_¬ I've tidied it up now, I think.

Edit2: I just crossposted this to the [livejournal.com profile] craftgrrl LJ community - I've never posted there before, and it just took me about 45 minutes of editing and changing and editing and rewriting to pluck up the courage to actually click POST. XD

I'm such a coward. This is part of the reason why I never commission people, even when they're offering free drawings - I get shy and awkward about saying "OOH ME, MEME, PICK ME, NIGEL", and end up chickening out.

Edit3: Haha. I just realised: it's Whitesides, in butterfly form.

IT'S HEEERRREEE

Wednesday, 18 April 2012 07:08 pm
keaalu: (sketchbook 2010)
Sketchbook 2013 IS HERE!

WOO. *signupped* I got the email 15:20, signed up 18:30 XD

This year, I'm going to try and NOT be rubbish. The first year, I got disillusioned by the thin-ness of the paper. The second year, I forgot about it for a while and had to rush to get it finished and posted, which made me sad.

THIS YEAR, I'm going to have a tidy flat, space to work, and I'm going to try and spread the work out a bit better, and end up with something I'm 100% please with, not 75% pleased with. ^__^

I'm not sure what my theme is going to be, this year. Last year, they had specific themes, like "prehistoric" (mine) or "road trip" or "storybook", which you chose when you signed up. This year, the options are Travelogue, Memoir, Narrative, Atlas, Almanac, Chronicle, Sketchbook, Chapbook (a what? I had to look it up), Documentation, Photo Log. Mine is a "I'll choose my category later", right now...
Edit: I'm glad I looked up "chapbook" because I might end up doing that, haha. XD Not the poetry, as such, but the writing and ephemera and stuff.

...My "Mystery Project" stuff hasn't arrived yet though. I'm still wiggling about what colour and theme I'm going to get.

Birdies

Monday, 16 April 2012 06:30 pm
keaalu: A hummingbird (Haeckel birdie)
(belatedly) Crossposting from my LJ

First, artiness.
Halli Halli
A sort of sketchy, "working doodle" of Halli. I'm still trying to pin down the species' final look; they're even LESS birdy than they used to be. She's descended from a flightless alien bird, for want of a better description.

She's of the "sanuki" race, which means she's fairly strikingly coloured - primarily reddish/russet in skin-tone, with paler areas around her eyes and on her cheeks, dark lips and a dark stripe up her nose and over her head.

Aron, the little male/"drae", is clavare; he's a lot paler, with darker eyestripe. (He reminds me a little of a badger. :P)


And some more pictures of "my wildlife".
Great tits Great tits
As in, the bird. And all right, OK, it's 3 shots of the same bird - but that foils my desire to make puns.
Hop-along Hop-along
You can't tell from this photograph, but this adorable little ball of fluff only has one leg.

When I first saw it, one leg was dangling pathetically behind it, and it looked like a huge effort to perch on anything because the leg would catch on things. The leg looks like it's possibly dropped off altogether, now. :( It doesn't even look like it's tucked up in its fluff, just... gone. Everything is still a huge wing-flapping effort, though. I suppose it must be really hard to balance.
Hop-along Hop-along
My one-legged robin lunging for a crumb that's fallen down off the fat-ball holder. I put out a whole dish of food (you can see it in my pigeon photos), but apparently the fat-balls are better.
Hop-along Hop-along
"What'choo looking at, anyway? Stop taking photos, person."
Hop-along Hop-along
Action shot! A fluttering lunge for another morsel. Seriously, this poor little bird goes to such a huge effort to feed itself; it must be exhausting.

I've not actually seen him/her for a few days, so I'm a little worried. I keep putting food out - the pigeons aren't eating ALL of it - but I've not seen either "Hop-along" or its mate recently.
Hop-along's friend Hop-along's friend
They're either mates, or just... unnaturally pacifist. They don't fight when they're together at the feeder, at least.
Muted Sun Muted Sun
On one side of the flat, the sun was peeking out through a really heavy, black cloud.
Twinkling Rain Twinkling Rain
That feeble, clouded sun gave some beautiful twinkling rain...
Evening Rainbow Evening Rainbow
...and on the other side of the flat, a full rainbow! (Although it was so much brighter and more beautiful in real life.)

There's a pair of pudgy little dunnocks going crazy out there as I type this. We've just had another hailstorm - I think we've had... five or six in the last few days? - so they look rather windswept and buffetted around, like they have huge poofy skirts on.

Edit on 16/04/2012:
Panic over! Hop-along was back in the feed dish tonight. :) Balancing a little easier, too, looks like. Phew!
keaalu: The sketchbook project (Sketchbook Project)
I copy/pasted this straight off my LJ, where the pics are hosted, so I might have to tweak some code when I get on lunchbreak XD

Pictures under cut! )

Edit: Haha, typical. The border that LJ refused to show on the style I use comes up just fine on here.
keaalu: (sketchbook 2010)
Drive-by post-work arting as I got the pictures off my camera at lunch... then realised I had no CD to take them home on.

Pictures under cut! )

Edit: ARGH why won't you put the border in like I tell you, LJ. I will have to edit this when I get home.

Edit@824am:
OK, so I've added in some spaces and made it slightly easier to read and tell which picture goes with which description. You probably CAN read the descriptions on the photographs themselves, but this was a quick'n'dirty Paint resize job and of course, the .jpg compression made it all almost illegible.

I would have done it last night, but it was SO COLD and the bus was late and I was tired from getting up so early, so I just... watched telly and fell asleep. XD

Wordclouds

Wednesday, 11 January 2012 08:18 am
keaalu: (Default)
Crosspooost.
I've been playing around with a word-cloud generator. At lunch, I ran the reporter on our enquiry database, pulled all the titles of the enquiries we've done in the last 2 years, then punched it into the cloud generator, just to see what would happen.

I originally wanted to find a tutorial of some kind to explain how to do those pictures where you have a shape that is made up of lots of smaller shapes - where for instance, you have the silhouette of a person's face, but instead of just a flat solid fill, it's filled with flowers, but they don't overlap, and don't go off the edge, just get smaller and smaller to fill all the gaps. It looks like hard work, and I wondered if there was a shortcut. (I can't find an example, now, but it's close-ish to this)

...and I found this instead. I'm having lots of ideas, but I'm not sure how I can work it into my art, as like a background or an element or something.

Then, of course, I had to run my fiction through it. ¬_¬ You should be able to guess which is which.

    


I seem to quite like the word "little", for some reason.

Arts!

Tuesday, 12 July 2011 08:15 am
keaalu: (Mirii NaNoWriMo)
As ever, click to enbiggen.

Bees! This is "Busy Bee", weilding a hammer, and "Bee-autiful", with a flower. D'aww. I'm working on "Bee-have" (police bee? haha) and "Bee mine" at the moment, but I've run out of bee-based puns, now.
They're sort of a "cute"-reworking of my Danata, just for the sake of being cute. ^^


This of course is Mirii, albeit with four arms and a scary tribal Mayan-esque look. The papyrus in the background is real, with real stitching; it originally was a sort of "lotus" design but I note it looks more like wings, right now. The image is marker and inks, digitally cut out and "pasted on". I'm probably going to re-draw the character, but keep the papyrus, as I'm not 100% satisfied with the picture - the clothing in particular, not so much the anatomy of the character.

This is technically another of my book cover attempts, hence the big title. (You'd think finishing editing the thing would be a better idea, right?) I need to strip the thing down to its bones and rebuild it, essentially. Mirii's story was mostly fluff - weird for weird's sake, I suppose? - with a lot of parts that didn't really seem to add anything to the story. I need to give Sunstone a more consistent personality, too. I might use the "record cards" type technique to edit it, it might be easier to visualise where I'm taking it.

Most Popular Tags

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags