Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A character design sketch page for a frisbee-golf company that needed a hero for their new glow-in-the-dark disc for playing frisbee-golf at night. They dug my "Blackbelt, Ninja Raven" however, the product being created in 2007 whilst the economy was prepping to take a plunge, I'm certain the product never made it to the shelves. Ah well, just keep drawing. Pen and ink, 2007.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Single page illustration for a manuscript by Tom Bodett. The book helps kids wrap their heads around the vastness of humanity. Pencil, 2006.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Illustration for bed time prayer book for Hallmark Cards. Gouache, 2008.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Quarter page illus. for Lawyer's Weekly magazine. The article was about restrictions placed on the opinions given during trial by medical professionals. Gouache, 1999.

Friday, July 27, 2012

In the beginning of 2007, my son Gabriel Faulkner and I travelled with our friend Malidoma Some to visit his home in Dano, Burkina Faso, W. Africa. Malidoma was to be initiated as an elder in his tribe, the Dagara and, as I was working on a graphic novel project with him based on his book "Of Water and the Spirit", he invited me and Gabriel to come along in order to get some solid research done. This is a sketch of the back of the hotel we stayed in while in Bobo-Dioulasso. The young man has taken the sheets from our beds and is washing them in the stream that flowed under the hotel. One of my favorite Malidoma quotes is "The belief in coincidence is the pervading superstition of the scientific age." Charcoal, 2007.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

"Prayer is when we talk to God and God listens. Meditation is when God talks to us and we listen."
Sri Brhamananda
Work in progess. Pen and ink. 2012.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

“The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who’ll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up & get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part & a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you."
Chuck Close
A little over a dozen years ago I shared this NYT article with my students at the College for Creative Studies. At the time, Mr. Close's position on drawing versus tracing down through the history of western art irritated me. After posting Mr. Close's quote a moment ago I looked up the article. I still tend to side with Susan Sontag- "To argue that there is a ''direct line from van Eyck to television,'' she said, "is to use present-day mass visual culture as the lens through which the past is examined. It represents the ''Warholization of art.''" Give it a read and let's see what you think.  It just seemed to me that Chuck was feeling somewhat intimidated by the works of the great draftsmen of western art-such as Ingres and, through his theory (e.g.- Ingres was a tracer) he was able to help himself feel a little better. This theory, however, couldn't explain the exquisitely drafted sketch portraits Ingres did while drinking coffee at his local cafe.
Double page spread for "The Monster Who Ate My Peas", published by Peachtree. Was strange to open the review copy and find that the art director had flipped the art and printed it backwards. Not the first time this had happened to my work. And I think the story flowed better with the change. I don't mind this sort of editing of the work, I just wish they'd let me in on the changes prior to the printing. Gouache and water color, 2000. And, btw, my son Gabriel Faulkner posed for the hero in the story. Cost me many packs of Pokemon cards to get him to sit still while I sketched and photo'd him. And, bless his heart, was certain that I used myself as the inspiration for the monster. He could be right.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Single page for "The Moonclock"- written and illustrated by me, 1991, Scholastic. Pen and ink, 18" x 24"- That's a whole heck of a lot of cross hatching.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Single page illustration from my first author/illustrated book "The Amazing Voyage of Jackie Grace". Scholastic Inc. 1985. Water color.
Perhaps- from the perspective of what we've seen these past 15 years regarding the use of assault weapons in horrendous crimes- it is time we review what was written in the late 18th century and consider what part of their thoughts on gun ownership still apply to us today.
The sorts of weapons used by the sick individual who slaughtered so many last Friday do belong on the discount rack at Kmart.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

"It is obscene that basically anyone who wants an assault weapon can simply go buy one. An assault weapon has one purpose and one purpose only: to kill people. The gun industry and their lobby, the NRA, is simply assuming that we'll be complacent...that there will be no real pressure put on our lawmakers to pass rational gun control legislation."
Marianne Williamson
We are reaping what we've sewn.
"When states have tried to keep under-18 kids from playing games rated "M" for mature, the proposed restrictions have often been challenged successfully in court."http://articles.cnn.com/2008-11-03/health/healthmag.violent.video.kids_1_violent-video-video-games-game-genres?_s=PM%3AHEALTH
Single page for my first author/illustrated book- "The Amazing Voyage of Jackie Grace" publ. by Scholastic. Looking at the art directors comments to the printer-which I'd never noticed before. Apparently she directed the printer to alter the green/blue color on the right side of Jackie's face to make it closer to flesh tone. Jeez, that seems like a major art issue and they never shared it with me. Go figure. Water color, 1985.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Young Men and Fire.
In the Dagara tradition of Burkina Faso, W. Africa, young men are initiated into the community at the age of about 12 through a series of difficult experiences over a period of several months. Young men are thought to carry a kind of fiery spirit through their teen years which can lead to great growth- or great loss- for the community. These initiatory experiences are designed to introduce the young men to the concept that "while they are all very nice planets, they are not the Sun.". In other words, they are challenged to go beyond their own smaller interpretation of life and to see how their actions affect everyone else. In short, the initiation process is designed to open their young hearts to the greater good.
The ancient tenet of the tribe is:
"Any village that does not initiate it's young men will, in turn, be burned down by the young men they chose not to initiate."
Another single page illustration for "The Moonclock", Scholastic Inc., 1992. These drawings are fairly big for me- 18" x 24". People often ask me at book signings if my hand get's tired. Well, rarely do I get tired while signing books but, lord, I still recall my sore left hand after several months of scratching the crow-quill for this book. It was a good ache, though.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Illustration for an article in "Lawyer's Weekly" magazine. Article covered the legal responsibilities that came with introducing the fantastic new internet into the classroom. Water color, gouache, 1996. And yes, I did use Mrs. Duffy (bless her soul), my 6th grade teacher, as the model in the swamp green dress.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

A single-page pen and ink illustration for "The Moonclock", the second book I'd written and illustrated, published by Scholastic Inc., 1992. The book was printed in full color but the art was created in two pieces- water color and a separate pen and ink. This was an attempt to get some really clear black line work and vibrant color in the days before digital color calibration in the printing process. We had a siamese cat when I was a kid. It's name was Tiki. Loved that Tiki. The cat had a bigger vocabulary than the rest of us. Pen and ink, 1991.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Single page illustration for the first book I illustrated, published by Scholastic Inc., 1985- "The Amazing Voyage of Jackie Grace". A tale of a young lad, his bath tub and the British sailors who abscond with his tub (and him) as they head out sea in search of their ship and the dastardly pirate Fletcher Leadbelly. Water color, pen and ink, 1984.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Anatomical study of the jaw, pencil, circa 1996.

Monday, July 16, 2012

This is the end paper art for a book I illustrated and wrote for Scholastic in 1990, called "The Moonclock". A separate water color overlay was created and the color/pen&ink works were combined at the printer. Pen and ink, 1990.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Intermediate sketch page for my graphic novel "Gaijin-American Prisoner of War"- a tale about a young man, Koji, and his mom, Adeline, as they are illegally interned along with over 100,000 other Japanese Americans during WWII. The image here shows Koji's reaction to the reality of the camp- over crowding, living in horse stalls, poor food and no privacy in the latrines etc. (among all the other obvious slights against the internees- the least of which being their loss of freedom because of their race). For some reason the designers of the camp latrines decided that Japanese Americans didn't need partitions in between each toilet, pencil 2009.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

A summer piece for the "WallStreetJournal" Classroom Edition. I think the article was talking about how Americans of differing income spend their summer vacations, gouache and water color, 1997.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Intermediate sketch for article on webmail security protection app for "Computer World" magazine, pencil, 2003

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

This was a quick warm/cool color study done for my character design class at the College for Creative Studies back in 2000. Was trying to show the power color can have in it's most direct expression- straight out of the tube- to define character, emotion and energy. Gouache, pencil 140 lb. Arches cold press paper.

Monday, July 9, 2012

This is Geoff. I did some sketches of him as the hero of the book "The Monster Who Ate My Peas", by Danny Schnitzlein, Peachtree Publishing, back in 2000. I sent these sketches along with drawings of other kids, including some of my then ten year old son Gabriel, to the publisher. While I did like these drawings of Geoff, I was very pleased when the publisher told me that they wanted to use Gabriel as the hero. Had to pay Gabriel Faulkner a vast quantity of Pokemon cards to get him to sit still while I posed and drew him. Gouache on 300 lb. cold press water color paper.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

This is the birth place/castle of Granuaille O'Malley's-Ireland's Pirate Queen, Clare Island, Clew Bay, Co. Mayo. On the day I tried to get onto a tour boat out to Clare Island to photograph and sketch the castle, the tail end of a north Atlantic gale was raging about Clew Bay. No tour boats would make the 10 mile trip out to the island. I waited around a bit, reluctant to miss the one opportunity to get out to the island and, lo and behold, a telephone company boat was heading out to the island. I gave the captain some cash and we road up and down the massive swells. Took us quite a while to make it out to the island. They left me near the castle and told me they'd be back soon. It was dark and I was beginning to look for places to camp out for the night when I saw the boat bobbing up and down towards me. We made it back to port, a little damp and stressed. Got back to the hotel, finished this drawing in the pub with a lovely Guinness by my side (and soon inside me along with a few others). I began doing visual research for the book "The Pirate Meets the Queen" which I wrote and illustrated for Phylomel-Penguin/Putnam, editor Patricia Lee Gauch in March, 2000, gouache of 300 lb. cold press water color paper

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Sketches for "Ralph", the scotty in the book I illustrated "The Monster Who Ate My Peas", pencil, gouache and water color, 2000.

Friday, July 6, 2012

An "en plein air" water color and gouache sketch of my friend and teacher Glenn Michaels. Beaver Island, Lake Michigan, 1998. I'm sketching Glenn sketching.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Thumbnail sketches for a book I wrote and illustrated "The Giving Season",  pen and ink, 1997

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Hippy 4th of July! Composite pencil sketch for the WallStreetJournal, 1996.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Gouache and pencil sketch for "The Monster Who Ate My Peas", Peachtree Publishing, 2001

Monday, July 2, 2012

Beaver Island Light House, Lake Michigan, pencil, August 1999

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Pencil sketches of my nephew Keith McNally and my son Gabriel Faulkner. St. James Harbor, Beaver Island, Lake Michigan, July 1st, 2003
Several years ago I sat at my parent's kitchen table, my sketch book in front of me and the print-out of a magazine editorial illustration assignment in front of me. I'd gone through several pages of thumbnail sketches and was thoroughly frustrated, unable to come up with a decent idea for the job. I sat there glaring at my blank sheet of sketch paper. My mom came in the room, saw me looking all angst and stürm and drang and stuff and she said "What's the matter with you?". "You know what mom," I replied. "There's nothing worse than a blank sheet of paper."
She smiled at me.
"No kidding. That's funny."
I frowned at her. "Oh really? Why?".
"Well, when you were about 6 years old I remember you sitting at that very same spot at the table and when I came in the room you smiled up at me as you were drawing and said 'You know what Mom!? My favorite thing in the world is a blank sheet of paper!'".
The End