October 7, 2017 0

Sketchbook People

By in heads, pencil, Portraits, sketches


People in the real world fly by, and it’s hard to catch them. So one uses imagination, and skills gained by practice to capture them.

Then there’s drawing from a photograph, which is basically analyzing shapes, and not that creative for me. Still, it produces a convincing result, and I learn something in the process.

But I’m lazy, and don’t like studying references. More fond of just drawing, even though it’s mainly for me.

September 18, 2017 0

Digitally Blonde

By in digital

Despite difficulties with hardware, I’m very happy with how the digital work seems to be progressing. Colours are a hard thing to get around, mainly because the palette here is potentially infinite.

I’m also getting better at fixing things up, because the line of the stylus rarely goes where you want it to, so you have to draw with these broad gestures, even though the working area here is tiny.

Still, it’s fun seeing things look not totally horrible. Will try to put up a few more, if the machinery will let me.

August 28, 2017 0

Digital Dame

By in digital, heads, women

Digital painting, on the bigger computer again. Trying to do what’s called “glazing,” using my “natural brushes.”

August 1, 2017 0

By in black and white, color, heads, horses, men, pen and ink, pencil, Portraits, sketches, watercolor, watercolour, women

This is sort of a test, in that I’m trying to post something via photos I took with the iPad. Sadly, there are a few things I haven’t figured out, but this is good enough for the time being.

July 30, 2017 0

Mount Royal Sketches

By in color, montreal, paintings, parks, sketches, watercolor, watercolour

Yesterday, I went to a friend’s place just over Mount Royal, Not far from the Côte-des-Neiges Cemetery gates. And it was such a nice day I sketched this elaborate monument just inside the gates.

Got to the other side of the “mountain.” That’s the part I call the “front” because it faces what used to be my neighbourhood. Had a good view of the world-famous “Mordecai Richler Gazebo” or bandstand, which had recently been marked by graffiti (non-political, I think). Hence the danger tape and the traffic cones, only barely indicted in the sketch below.

Still, it was very pleasant to sketch things from life. I want to do it some more, and work on my watercolour chops.

July 29, 2017 0

Morning Squirrel

By in ballpoint pen, color, paintings, sketches, watercolor, watercolour

Angry chitterer.

July 5, 2017 0

150 Words or Less

By in ruttan's place, writing

For the Canada sesquicentennial celebration, the Atwater Library here in Montreal sponsored a contest where people could write in little stories or memories in about 150 words. I entered three.

Didn’t win anything (my pal Joanne Carnegie got a nifty framed certificate as a runner-up), but I enjoyed the challenge of trying to write to that length, and exploring some memories.

So, here are the pieces, one after the other. No titles, because those weren’t asked for.

I think every Canadian should take a cross-country train ride at least once. It opened me up to the country. I was going back to the family in Calgary for Christmas, from my home in Montreal.

Outside the train windows, the landscape passed by. The Canadian Shield, farmland aplenty, various towns and cities. A loudspeaker voice reminded us that we were travelling on “The Canadian” and informed us of every place name and feature.

The major thing about the train, however, is people. On a train you can stretch out, move around, and talk to folk.
I did crossword puzzles. I also had an affair. The train broke down outside Winnipeg, and started getting cold. She and I huddled under my sleeping bag and cuddled. She was from Toronto. The love affair lasted as long as the free passes the company later gave us to compensate for the breakdown.
. . .

As my grandmother got older, and perhaps had a brandy or two on a special occasion, she would slip back into the past. I would become her son, my Dad, and our dog would become Timmy, her family dog. She had grown up and lived in Hardisty, a small town in Central Alberta. Late in life, she made an effort to record her early memories on paper, a document I saved and later transcribed for my web site. [link here]

She taught school in a one-room school house in the town, and rode to work on her trusty mare. She played for the local women’s hockey team. She travelled to Asia, and drove the Alaska Highway in her two-door Buick. I’ve got records of these things, and pictures, some of which are on the site. But mainly I miss visiting her, chatting, and going with her on drives in her big car.

. . .

I worked at the concrete plant for a summer. My Dad got me the job, because our next door neighbour happened to own the concrete plant and Dad had a word with him.

I helped make sewer pipe, which wasn’t as nice as doing architectural concrete, but still a well-paying job.
My main task was to show up early in the morning, and open up all the steam kilns. Shutting off the steam, and letting yesterday’s pipe cool in the morning air.

Then the forklifts would come and pick it all up, taking it into the yard. There I knocked off the metal rings which formed the lips of the pipe. Once I almost flattened the foreman with one of those rings.

In the afternoons, I’d help pour new pipe on a huge molding machine.

I wasn’t the best worker, but the job did give me great arms.


June 26, 2017 1

Painted Squares

By in color, paintings, sketches, watercolor, watercolour

Taped off a few big rectangles in the sketch book, and painted them with watercolours. Will try to vary the palettes a little more next time.

June 21, 2017 1

Mr. Boggedy

By in black and white, cats, pencil

June 18, 2017 1

Quick Cyclops

By in color, digital

Darn. So much more to share. I used to post everything I drew/created! Oh well, here’s this guy.

May 11, 2017 0

3D Tabby

By in Blender 3D, cats

3D tabbers and mouse. I have to work on whiskers, I’m afraid, Next comes hair, which will be spooky. This is the rug I have in my hallway.

May 2, 2017 0

Page of Draw-rings

By in color, Coloured Pencils, pencil, sketches

I used to post here once a day. Now I’m guilty of drawing many drawings, even ones I think of as good ones, and not putting them up. Forgive me!

April 26, 2017 0


By in Blender 3D

Apologies to good cats everywhere. I was mainly trying to get the desert floor to look right, with the help of something called a “bump map.”

April 24, 2017 0

3D Space Rendezvous

By in Blender 3D

I’ve learned a bit about “UV unwrapping,” which is the art of making shapes one can decorate with graphics, and “paste” around your 3D model.

Next today is to learn about “bump mapping,” which will let me put space-shippy details on the models. Maybe also “particle fields,” which will let me create stars, perhaps a nebula or two.

I think this is very cute, though. Reminds me exactly of building such things out of plastic model kits as a kid, and then carefully painting them. No nasty chemical smells here in the digital world, however.