Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Another spread finished. I've been going back and forth as to whether this drawing is any good. I'm having the same issue I had when I drew spread #2-- I've changed the scale of the buildings to accommodate a tall building. Here that tall building is the U.S. Bank building, one of the less attractive buildings on Main. If you look closely (at the actual building, not my drawing) you can tell it's a historic building that has been re-clad in '60s-ish Brutalist stucco and glass. Presumably this cladding could be removed to reveal the brick beneath. It's been done with other buildings on Main before, so only time will tell if the same fate is in store for this lovely structure.
My poor planning re: the scale change meant I started a bit high on the page and had to slowly move everything lower as I proceeded from left to right. I think it makes Bozeman look like San Francisco. But, hey, it makes for good variety from page to page.
Friday, February 20, 2009
I finished this one last week, and I'm almost finished with #18. I've estimated that I have 8 pages left in the project. Then I can figure out just what I want to do with it...
Monday, February 16, 2009
Something I've come back to repeatedly in my drawing and painting is the self-portrait, and I am certainly not alone among artists when it comes to autoritratti. I think about this ritual a lot. Why a "self" portrait? Maybe the answers are obvious-- I'm a free (or at least cheap) and always available model. I (possibly like most artists) am obsessively self-absorbed. Am I a narcissist, or do I just want to know more about me? I hope the answer is the latter, but always fear it's the former. I don't like the way I look, but maybe it's that I like that I don't like the way I look, so I do like the way I look. (Critical thinking starts to fold in on itself here, and I often find myself getting nowhere).
Sunday, February 15, 2009
I went out to Butte on Saturday to my opening at the Phoenix Gallery. I've never had a solo show before, and it turned out to be solo in more ways than one (not a lot of people showed up), but it was still fun to meet Mary and Tom at the gallery. Actually, a few folks came in, including my friend Nate's brother Caleb and his significant other Katie. Butte is a fascinating town with a lot of history and fantastic architecture, so I drove out a little early to see if I could find something to draw. The Curtis Music Hall was right across the street from the gallery, so I set up my folding chair and spent about an hour on this sketch. It was all of 25F in Butte that day, so an hour was all I could last.
I did a few other sketches in Bozeman this weekend-- this first one on Friday of an abandoned restaurant on 7th Ave. and another today, from inside my truck (cold out, y'know) of the corner of 5th and Main, a few blocks from downtown.
Check out my Flickr page for pics of the show.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Saturday, February 7, 2009
I went out once again today to draw in the sunshine. Really unusual for Bozeman this early in February, but I'm from South Texas, so I'm not complaining.
Anyway, when I first started the main street project, the building you see here (First Security Bank) didn't look anything like this. It was a none-too-memorable, '60s-style construction, set back from the street, with cement benches in the front, and a big time-and-temperature sign on the corner. From what I'm hearing, the renovation will make the building more "consistent with the character" of downtown. Of course, they're also adding a drive-though lane around the back. I guess they don't care much for the "pedestrian" character of downtown.
The buildings to the right are also both new (well, the one in the front is a remodel). To show that Bozeman developers don't all hate pedestrians, the tall glass building in the back used to be an ugly surface lot, and now it's office space. So, there are some smart things happening downtown, too.
I think this ended up being a nice little sketch. I drew for about two hours, took a half-hour break for some lunch, came back and finished it just as the sun disappeared and the air temp dropped about 15 degrees. I've now taken to wearing my giant headphones while listening to my iPod, so fewer people are bothering me on the street than earlier in the project. Of course, I'm also bringing my own portable chair, even though there's an empty bench just 15 feet away, so I might just look crazy.
Friday, February 6, 2009
It's been unseasonably warm in Bozeman for the last week, so I've finally been able to return to my Main Street sketchbook project. This is my second spread drawn from the north side of Main, looking south. The nice thing about being on the north side of the street is that, if it's sunny, it stays nice and warm, even on chilly days. The drawbacks are that the low winter sun is always in the south, just over the rooftops. It shines directly into my eyes, which can be pretty uncomfortable, even with sunglasses on. The sun being behind the buildings also means there is a lack of interesting shadows and some details are hard to make out. Oh well. At least I feel like I was able to get back into a rhythm right away after such a long break (2 months.)
The building in the center of the sketch is MacKenzie River Pizza Co., a combination gourmet/Montana regional pizza place that is usually pretty good. It's also quite popular with the tourists. I like the "Hot Hawaiian" pizza-- jalapeños, pineapples, chicken, bacon and barbecue sauce. Good stuff.