Art Inspiration: Imagine The Impossible: Steampunk Woman 01


       

 

‘The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance.’ Aristotle

 

‘This world is but a canvas to our imagination.’ Henry David Thoreau

 

‘If you can dream it, you can do it.’ Walt Disney

 

Inspiration and Imagination, something every artist needs and is elusive as an island of tranquility in a sea of chaos. Many people have told me that I inspire the children and people in general with what I do. Whether creating art, playing baseball or trying to improve my life, people say that I have inspired others to try new things and look inside themselves. I have always found this interesting because I get my inspiration from these very people. Whether it be a child asking me about Mythology or adults asking me about their children or even just talking to people about a number of different topics, they have inspired me to create and use my imagination to bring the impossible possible.

A prime example is when I draw the staff at my school as cartoon characters or caricatures. It started one year around Christmas when we have our Christmas concert and staff dinner. Always after the concert, we go out for dinner and we exchange gifts, such as a Chris Kringle. I wanted to liven things up and instead of giving Christmas cards, I decided to create my own with the staff members as a caricature.
This specific year the inspiration for the caricatures came from my own person exploration of a style known as Steampunk. Steampunk is a subgenre of science-fiction and fantasy that came out of literary works such as Jules Vern and H.G. Wells to name a couple. But Steampunk can be best described by breaking up the word. “Steam” represents the era mostly the early industrial age around the early to mid-Victorian Era. “Punk” represents rebellion or going against the norm.
The “Punk” or rebellion signifies going against what is expected on the technology level as well as societal norms. On the technology level you see cars that are steamed powered, flying dirigibles or airships the size and look of sailing vessels or even steam-powered walking machines.   Yet when it comes to rebellion on the societal side, it affects women the most. During this time women were relegated to subordinates to the men, covering up themselves, not taking up employment or independent behavior. That is why in Steampunk you will see many women showing cleavage or wearing short skirts and showing a lot of leg to show off their stockings.
It took quit a while to create the caricatures but once the staff received them they loved the cards and caricatures. In the next few weeks I will be posting a few of the characters from the cards because these people inspired me to create these characters. Hopefully they can spur imagination and inspire others.

 

Steampunk Woman 01

 

The first caricature is a person whom I wanted to show their rebellious side. I wanted to create the caricature with a skirt and high boots along with the customary leather corset. I then added the puffy shirt that highlighted the breasts and cleavage. I then added the two belts with packs, goggles and finally a steampunk style rifle. With these caricatures I created a new way of creating hair and with caricature she has long shoulder length blonde hair.

Well she enjoyed the caricature, as did the other staff. I hope you enjoy the first steampunk caricature from “Imagine the Impossible.”

Steampunk Woman 01

 

 

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Comic Strips: The Beauty Of Their Dreams


 

The latest publication of the newsletter has been sent out and with it the last comic strip of 2016-17 ‘The Craziest Things’ along with it. The June comic strip is a culmination of the year’s drawings of the students in the graduating class at my school. Every month I create a comic strip with the students in the grade 5s in a situation that I have observed them doing. I sometimes take a little creative license but in many instances, what you see is what happened.

But like I said, the June comic is a culmination of the year and these children will be graduating to a new school to begin the daunting task of fitting into middle school. Yet for the last comic of the school year I like to create a scene with a farewell message or words of wisdom to the graduating class. You can see a few of the previous years in the comic section on my blog. One year the scene was a class photo, one was about different people you meet in your life and another was about shooting for the stars.
This year I went for the theme of the beauty in their dreams. Dreams are what drive many people; from the dream of getting that dream job to a family. Dreams help inspire and drive many people to do their best and never give up. I thought of an endless road that can allow your mind to wander. To help you dream of the endless possibilities one could experience. Therefore I placed the students on that road and wrote …

 

The future belongs to those who believe

in the beauty of their dreams.

Good Luck Class of 2017!

 

A quote from Eleanor Roosevelt. The future is for those who can believe in their dreams.

I hope you enjoy The Craziest Things: The Beauty Of Their Dreams.

Comic Strips: Mmmm Spaghetti


 

The latest installment of The Craziest Things has been sent out and with it an episode that actually happened at the school.

Sometimes I am amazed at the creativity and imagination of the students. Two senior girls wanted to create something. They asked for yarn and I asked why. They said they wanted to create food and I said, ‘ok I love to see it.’ So I helped them find yarn ands anything else they needed and then left them to create. Once they were done it looked real! I took a picture of it so you can see. After I heard them say they wanted to trick a few people, including teachers into trying to eat it. They almost got away with it too.

I had to recreate the scenario in the comic to immortalize their creativity and imagination. I hope you enjoy the latest installment of, The Craziest Things; Mmmm Spaghetti.

Spaghetti and meatballs created by two students using yarn.

 

Comic Strips: Double The Fun


 

The latest instalment of The Craziest Things has been sent out and with it a wish that many have had at least once in their lives.

Many of us do not have an identical twin but sometimes we wish we did. We’d imagine tricking our parents or others with simple little jokes or trying to double our chances of getting more stuff. The Weasly twins from the Harry Potter series, played by James Phelps and Oliver Phelps, stir up our imagination on what mischief we can get into if we had a twin to back us up. At the school we have several identical twins yet I have never had an opportunity to draw them into my comic strip until know.

Quit simply it’s a scenario that many of us without an identical twin would love to have. Well, at least once in a while. Yet if you look closely there is something that does differentiate the twins from each other besides the colour of their shirts.  I wonder if you can spot it.  

I hope you enjoy the latest instalment of, The Craziest Things; Double The Fun.

Art Inspiration: Take A Risk Or Not To Take A Risk


ArtInspirationPaulGLogo

 

‘We have to take risks with art. If we don’t, it all becomes a bit boring.’ Julie Walters

 

I am currently teaching a drawing club at the school for the afterschool students who are interested. I began with the basics of drawing and I even taught them how to write with cursive and calligraphy letters. However, they are interested in drawing superheroes and cartoon characters so I began teaching them how. Yet interestingly I found that when I was showing them how to draw some superheroes, I noticed that my drawings were more on the conservative side.

A colleague pointed it out to me when I drew Wonder Woman for a lesson. I drew her skinny, with small breasts and hips. I already know that but I did not realize that I sub-consciously did it. I redrew the character the way I would for myself and there was a bit of a difference. I made her curvier, with larger breasts and hips. Mind you the first attempt took me 20 – 30 minutes to create where the second took me about 60 minutes. You can see the difference in the images below.
Yet the interesting thing was that I would normally draw Wonder Woman version 2 for myself, but I think because I was drawing it for the students I did version 1. Perhaps it’s because in the past whenever I would draw the female form, many people (female colleagues) thought that what I drew was too provocative. However I would not draw them the same way  they would in comic books but more like version 2, therefore I felt that I was being judged too harshly.
I could have taught the students how to draw version 2, yet I guess I just did not want to hear the “whining” from those people, so I just drew the female character of Wonder Woman like version 1. In the end the students were the ones that suffered because I played it safe.
Art is not about playing it safe, it’s about taking risks. I love taking risks with art, it makes me feel alive and one with my true self. However this has made me do some deep thinking; we usually take risks when we feel safe. Answering a question in class knowing we won’t be made fun of if we get it wrong. Trying out for a team knowing we won’t be laughed at if we don’t make the play.  Safe from ridicule and judgment.  I wonder what does it mean when I draw version 1 instead of version 2. I guess actions do speak louder than words.

Here’s to taking risks.

Comic Strips: Global Excuses


 

ComicStrips

With the New Year comes the latest edition of the monthly newsletter and with it the February instalment of The Craziest Things.

Every child, they want to wear has become an even more prevalent. Showing ones’ individual style has become an obsession with people and it has trickled down to children as well. Students in the fourth and fifth grade are beginning to assert their own preference or style even at this early age. Some even use external forces to make their point.

In Toronto Canada, we have seen some mild winters in the past few years. This has not been unnoticed by the students. On many occasions I have reminded students to wear their hats and mittens and even their jackets. Yet I know once my head is turned, off the jacket comes, therefore I don’t bother any more. I have adapted the belief that Mother Nature is a much better teacher on what to wear then I will ever be. Some times Mother Nature throws a curve ball at the students and they take full advantage.  

I hope you enjoy my attempt at political satire of, The Craziest Things; Global Excuses.

feb2017nl03pg06-copy

Art Inspiration: Staff Cartoons The Journey Together: Group 3


The JourneyTogether Title

“Sometimes it’s the journey that teaches you a lot about your destination.” Drake

 

“Friends are as companions on a journey, who ought to aid each other to persevere in the road to a happier life.” Pythagoras

 

Inspiration and Imagination, two things that every artist needs and is as difficult to find as buried treasure. But once you find it the world is you oyster. Many people have told me that I inspire the children and people in general with what I do. Whether creating art, playing baseball or trying to improve my life, people say that I have inspired others to try new things and look inside themselves. I have always found this interesting because I get my inspiration from these very people. Whether it is a child asking me about Mythology or talking to people about a number of different topics, they have all inspired me to create and use my imagination to bring the impossible to life.

A prime example is when I draw the staff at my school as cartoon characters or caricatures. It started one year around Christmas when we have our Christmas concert and staff dinner. Always after the concert, we go out for dinner and we exchange gifts, such as a Chris Kringle. I wanted to liven things up and instead of giving Christmas cards, I decided to create my own with the staff members as a caricature.
This specific year I was at teacher’s college and I spent more time with my follow teacher candidates and anyone else. In many ways they inspired me all yearlong and that inspiration gave birth some new caricatures.   I continued with my favorite style Steampunk. Steampunk is a subgenre of science fiction and fantasy that came out of literary works such as Jules Vern and H.G. Wells. But Steampunk can be best described by breaking up the word. “Steam” represents the era mostly the early industrial age around the Victorian Era. “Punk” represents rebellion or going against the norm.
The “Punk” or rebellion goes for going against what is expected on the technology level as well as societal norms. On the technology level you see cars that are steamed powered, flying dirigibles or airships the size and look of sailing vessels or steam-powered walking machines.   Yet when it comes to rebellion on the societal side it affects women the most. During this time women were relegated to subordinates to the men, covering up themselves, not taking up employment or independent behaviour. That is why in Steampunk you will see many women showing cleavage or wearing short skirts and showing a lot of leg to show off their stockings.
Between classes, lesson plans work and other things it took quit a while to create the caricatures. But once my fellow teacher candidates received them they loved the cards and caricatures. In the next few weeks I will be posting a few of the characters from the cards because these people inspired me to create these characters on our ‘Journey Together’ through teacher’s college. Hopefully they can spur imagination and inspire others.

Steampunk Group 3

 

This group of wonderful people, I connected with them from the very start of the year I was in teacher’s college. In some ways this group inspired all the previous group caricatures. Yet I did not create their caricatures until the end of the school year. Mostly because I was so preoccupied with all the schoolwork, yet I made it a point to give this to them before the end of the school year. Their friendship and help made teacher’s college fun in so many ways. The title The Journey Together is self-explanatory and it fits well for this group. We journeyed through teacher’s college through the good and bad times but we never lost of sense of fun and fellowship. We ended up with a great adventure, tremendous stories and experiences to remember for a lifetime.

When I gave them their individual caricatures’, I also gave them this group image. It has all of them and myself as The Captain (of course). They all loved it and they were speechless. Yet they could not stop thanking me for this piece of art and a few tears of gratitude was shed too. I hope you enjoy the third steampunk caricature group from “The Journey Together.

Steampunk Group 01 - An Inspirational Group

Steampunk Group 01 – An Inspirational Group

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