October 7, 2015 0

Blue Metropolis

By in montreal, sketches, watercolor, watercolour, writing

Gene Luen Yang

Finally getting around to this. The Blue Metropolis Book Fest is Montreal’s premiere English language lit bash, taking place in April. This year I attended a couple of events, mainly centred around graphic novels and their creators. It was great seeing Gene Luen Yang, who gave a workshop on graphic storytelling, and was quite enlightening.

The main point I got from him was that it’s possible to tell a story in an interior way, by illustrating a character’s emotions. That’s something that Eastern comics do much more often than do Western ones, which are more concerned with the external.

Anyhow, these are doodles I made at his workshop, later embellished with watercolour.


I also saw a presentation by Liana Finck of her book A Bintel Brief. This was interesting because she didn’t have images (the audio-visual people were sleeping on the job). So she was forced to describe her comic, which brought it a little closer to verbal storytelling.



September 30, 2015 0


By in montreal, pencil, sketches


Pencil sketches from old photos of mine of architecture. One is the Frank Lloyd Wright-styled fire station on Notre Dame Street East (now covered in scaffolding), and the other is on Sherbrooke Street E., near the old Library. I can go on Google street view and find out exactly, which is interesting.

September 29, 2015 0

Digital Dallying.

By in color, digital, women


I’m reasonably pleased with how digital painting is progressing. Takes a different skill set to work with the stylus, and the program. Colour’s never been my strong suit, but I’ve learned things in watercolour to make images bright and interesting, and am learning the same thing here, I hope. All the tutorials on Deviantart.com and youtube help.

I’m managed to make things simpler and faster. Still trying to draw accurately (which is harder for me than with a pencil), and keep a degree of “Looseness” which doesn’t look crooked or sloppy. Still a bit of a ways to go, but I’m happy with what’s happening.


September 25, 2015 0

Jack Ruttan – Storyboards and French-English Translation

By in collaboration, ruttan's place, self-promotion, storyboards


I’ve made up a promotional postcard to advertise my skills. It’s going up on walls and into mailboxes in the real world, because I’m thinking people like to hold something in their hands. It’s also something cute to hand out after a face to face meeting. Remember those?

My “adobe illustrator” skills were a little rusty, and I’ve never called myself a “graphic designer,” but once I got into it, it was fun to do.

September 24, 2015 0

Centre Sportif Jean-Claude Malepart

By in black and white, montreal, paintings, parks, pencil, sketches, watercolor, watercolour


This is pronounced “Mallapar,” (actually, more like Maly-par, sez a franco friend) for you non French-speakers. (I am almost a non-French speaker, by the way, despite spending all this time in Montreal). But in my anglo heart, I still see it as “Male-Part.”

I’m sure he was a worthy gentleman, but I’m happy they didn’t rename my street, Rouen, after him.

Anyhow, I was sitting in the park this afternoon, drawing things. This is the sports centre near my place, on rue Ontario. People were throwing a football outside. Once I would have worried that they were going to hit me, but now my thought was, “gee, I wish I could be out there throwing a football.”


September 23, 2015 0

Random Sketchbook Page

By in color, sketches, watercolour


I was scanning things to improve the post below, and this page looked cool, and unpublished. So here it is. Now back to scanning.

September 23, 2015 0

Pilgrims and Spies

By in cats, color, Coloured Pencils, heads, men, paintings, pencil, ruttan's place, sketches, watercolor, watercolour




Morning sketches, to clear my head, and chase away the nightly terrors. I’m on my front balcony, the sun just peeping over the buildings and trees. These are just things I’ve done yesterday and today. The usual things I’ve seen, either real or on TV, and faces, of course. Out of my head, and from magazines.

I’m sometimes concerned that people will think I’m a spy or a voyeur up here with my subnotebook and little camera. That’s maybe partly right, but I’m not working for any flag or cause, and no one’s paying me.

Thinking of the people at the Hadj, for one thing. I’m pretty much an atheist now, but my experience with religious mass events makes me think how happy they must be.

(apologies for the quality of the images. It gets bright out here, and I was working on my tiny computer!)

September 9, 2015 0

The Great Antonio

By in montreal, pen and ink, ruttan's place, sketches

Today, a park in Montreal got a bench in it dedicated to the Great Antonio. He’s a former Montreal strongman you can read about here. Meanwhile, here are some items from my flickr feed to do with him. A drawing I did of him, the way he looked sitting in the Metro in the 1980s-2000s selling pictures of himself pulling his bus, and posing with Merv Griffin and Michael Jackson.

And secondly, one of those cards themselves. RIP Antonio!


The Great Antonio card, side 2

The Great Antonio card, side 1

September 2, 2015 0

Hangin’ With Mr. B.

By in cats, Gouache, sketches, watercolor, watercolour


It’s Mr. Boggedy again!

September 2, 2015 0

Wednesday Sketches

By in color, horses, sketches, watercolor, watercolour



August 28, 2015 0

Léon and Emma

By in color, heads, paintings, sketches, watercolor, watercolour, women


This is Léon and Emma from MADAME BOVARY. Plus, a lot of attempts at watercolour “colour wheels,” and a Big Suit man.

August 26, 2015 0

Parc Médéric-Martin Wading Pool

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


I hope I haven’t already put this up. It’s from last year, and the pool has been totally renovated, so it doesn’t look like this anymore.

August 13, 2015 0

Men at Work

By in machines, men, montreal, pen and ink, pencil, ruttan's place, sketches, watercolor, watercolour

One woman, too. They’ve been tearing up the schoolyard across the street from me. I’m being driven a little snakey by the roaring of trucks, the constant beep-beep-beep, and the dust.

So, I’m consoling myself by drawing the occasional picture of things. They’ll be here all August, so there is probably more to come.





August 10, 2015 0

Prefontaine Metro Station, Montréal

By in montreal, sketches, watercolor, watercolour