Category Archives: Drawing

"Exercise or Not, Sitting at a Desk All Day is Bad for You"

“It doesn’t matter if you go running every morning, or you’re a regular at the gym. If you spend most of the rest of the day sitting – in your car, your office chair, on your sofa at home – you are putting yourself at increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, a variety of cancers and an early death. In other words, irrespective of whether you exercise vigorously, sitting for long periods is bad for you.”
$20 Cintiq Solution (standing allows an ecstatic jig once in a while too; unstained yet)
Update: slip a manual treadmill beneath the stand (such as this $120 version from Wallmart); 
throw away its vertical supports…set it on a lower wooded frame and 
you’re walking while drawing!!  The best ever!!). 
Update: an $800 electric powered seated/standing adjustable desk…for which I cannot envision spending $800, ever.
Update: “Inactivity boosts cancer risk, research finds,” Washington Post: “…among post-menopausal women, taking frequent breaks from sitting was associated with smaller waist circumference and lower risk of some cancers. Even short periods of light activity — frequently standing up and walking for as little as a minute at time — reduced risk for such biomarkers as large waist circumference, elevated triglyceride levels and increased insulin resistance, which are linked to heightened cardiovascular disease but might also boost cancer risk.”

To Create Character: Start with One Detailed Eye

To isolate and pinpoint factors that contribute to the “magic” of Rembrandt’s portraits, computer-rendering programs were used to recreate four of the artist’s most famous portraits. Replicating Rembrandt’s techniques, scientists placed a sharper focus on specific areas of each model’s face, such as the eyes.

Working with a team from the Vision Lab in UBC’s Department of Psychology, Dr. DiPaola tracked viewers’ eye movements while they examined the original photographs and the Rembrandt-like portraits.

“When viewing the Rembrandt-like portraits, viewers fixated on the detailed eye faster and stayed there for longer periods of time, resulting in calmer eye movements,” DiPaola said. “The transition from sharp to blurry edges, known as ‘lost and found edges,’ also directed the viewers’ eyes around the portrait in a sort of narrative.”

The study is the first to scientifically verify the impact of these “eye-guiding” techniques on viewers and to attribute its origin to Rembrandt. Viewers also preferred portraits with this “eye-guiding narrative” to the original photographs with uniform details across the tableau.

Started on Twitter by Emma Coats (@lawnrocket): #framegame

The funnest game EVER was invented Thursday afternoon September 23, 2010 by @lawnrocket!!  If you are a story artist or just interested in storyboarding check out Twitter hashtag #framegame every Friday ( ).  Anyone can join in — either sketching or guessing.

My first entry in #framegame; final scene in my fav cartoon.
(23rd September 2010 the start of #framegame in storyboarding history!)
Update: All 24 minutes and 49 seconds of Lorax goodness can be seen in its entirety thanks to Google Video, here: 

Eric Machmer: Tsam Dancers (Moleskine)

The little guy on the left with the artificially large head MASK — an iconic figure in Mongolian culture — is called “The Old White Man.” (This is not a racial or ethnic description; he comes from a hybrid of very old Tibetian Buddhist and native Mongolian traditions.) He is by far my favorite stylized dancing figure.

Suggestions for Improving…or, "if you want to learn to draw — draw, draw, draw."

Interesting article:

“Every day you are slowly reinventing yourself into the person/artist you’re going to be in ten years. Keep this in mind.”

“Generally speaking, if you are young and male, trust your opinions about your work a little less, you aren’t as good as you think. If you are a woman of any age,  you’re usually a little better than you give yourself credit for. This isn’t an exact thing, but psychologically, this seems to be how it works.”

“As a last comment, I would stress how important drawing is. Painting is an extension of drawing. If you don’t draw well, you will not paint well. Master drawing and you can do anything you want with it. It is the most fundamental skill in all the visual arts and is an asset to every visual artist. “

"Alice’s Adventures Under Ground"

Virtual books at the British Library are pretty cool, especially interesting are Lewis Carroll’s personal illustrations in his hand-written draft of “Alice’s Adventures Under Ground” (which even includes a photo of the original Alice).  Also available are a sketchbook of da Vinci, Mozart’s musical diary (with audio excerpts), and a notebook of Blake (with sketches). Enjoy!

Eric Machmer: Gordon “Lightfoot” Jackson

This character has nothing in common with me whatsoever; he’s exhibiting irresponsible behavior, I don’t do drugs, and, he’s loud. Not me. However, friends and acquaintances of mine could definitely be mistaken for Gordon. He was intended to be a light sketch but turned into something slightly more rendered once scanned into Photoshop. If time permits I’d like to create a sketchbook of near-term galactic travels in which Gordon would find his place.