Thursday, May 28, 2015

2015 Fresh - April (Nearly Off the Grid).

   Hi Everybody! Let's see, my last post was on April 25th, and in that post I remarked that I hadn't done a post since April 3rd (22 days). I started this post on May 27th, and may not  finish it until sometime tomorrow, the 28th, which should make it a 32 day delay since my last post. A New Record!!!
   I'm still drawing (feverishly) every chance I get, and I've been exploring some new design Ideas that look promising. Why then haven't I been blogging? 2 main reasons - 1. I've been either working or sleeping for the last month. 2. Kevin Koastie was giving me writer's block. It didn't feel right to do a post that didn't include another episode of his adventures, but I was using every chance I had to work on those new abstract designs I mentioned above and couldn't pull myself away to do another raggedy old cartoon. Well, I finally did the raggedy cartoon and so now I can show off the work I completed in April, 2015, which led to the work I did in May, 2015 which kept me from posting anything here!
   But I'll have to finish this later, because now it's time for me to get ready to go to work!

5/28/15 4:40 am. OK, it's later, I'm home from work and I can't sleep, so I might as well finish this post!

Memphis Famous - 1st Draft. 4/1/15

This is another Logo design, promoting a musical event intended to feature Famous Memphis musicians, or at least musicians who are famous around Memphis.

   Then I heard a 'rumor' about a couple of my favorite Internet People and I thought to myself, "That's sounds like good news, if it means what I think it means! They deserve Bacon!"

The "Idea" of Bacon 2.0. 4/10/15
   This is when I started to go "off the grid". I've been using square or triangular grids to help me create my designs for years. But I created this one without a grid, or at least with a grid distorted by two semi-circles. That worked so well, I tried it again but with this next one, I offset the two semi-circles to make it even more "squiggly".

Rainbow Bacon. 4/13/15

   So ... if those couple of people I'm thinking about ever happen to make an announcement of some sort, the sort that involves presents and congratulations and such, I've got a matching set of pictures for them! Just sayin' ...

New Old School - 1st Draft. 4/19/15
   This is another Logo for a different musical event. The idea behind this one is to have a group of young and old musicians jam together in a concert. I chose Blue and Gold for the colors of the lettering, because those were my old school colors.Central Valley Valiants. Go Valiants!

7 Layers Deep - Earth Day Braid. 4/22/15
   No, I haven't gone 'Green'. I heard it was Earth Day again on the radio, and that got me thinking about all the bovine excretions I've heard down through the years about what environmental "crisis" was gonna kill us all next, and I though, "They just keep piling it higher and deeper!". Well, this design has a total of seven different strands in it. I drew each strand separately, so that they gradually move farther into the background, and picked a different color for each strand. Then of course I had to color in all the bits between the strands and there you go! Ta Da!

Thinking Inside the Box (or) Death and Taxes 3.0. 4/27/15

Every April around tax time my imagination takes a grim and grizzly turn. This year, not so much - I got a pretty good refund. Yeah, I know, I just loaned the money to the government for a year interest free, but it's still a wad of cash I wasn't expecting, which is always pleasant.

   Now here's a few previews of coming attractions.

Black & White Test #54
Black & White Test #55

Work in Progress
And ... at long last ... a New Episode of The Adventures of Kevin Koastie! Yay! As you may recall, the Space Guard Cutter Free Enterprise had just been boarded by a squad of Elvish Storm Troopers after Dr. McKoi had been transmogrified into a Dwarf by Mr. Sprock's magic ring ... and the crew are nearly all drunk out of their minds from celebrating Talk Like A Pirate Day all evening!

Go get'em, Doc!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

2010 Quasi-Fresh - July.

   Man! I can't believe I haven't posted anything here since April 3! I've had a Kevin Koastie cartoon all set to show for 2 weeks, but just haven't found the time to do a full-blown post. On the positive side, my next paycheck should show an enormous increase in the amount of Overtime pay! Maybe I'll splurge and buy a pound of hamburger with the windfall!

   Today I'll be showing the work I completed in July, 2010. Also a few Works-In-Progress and the aforementioned cartoon.

Dream Catcher #2. 7/7/10
   I'd done a lot of designs up to this point that involved drawing spiral lines from the center of the page out to the edges. As the lines moved out from the center they moved further apart from each other, so I'd add extra lines between the original lines and as they continued to move further apart I'd add even more extra lines between the lines I'd already drawn. Now, some of those designs turned out pretty cool, if I do say so myself, but I wanted to try something different. Dream Catcher #1 was the breakthrough! (Sorry I can't show it to you, but I sold it years ago.)
   What's different about these designs I call 'Dream Catchers' is that they involve exactly twice the number of lines as a regular old spiral design. I drew a spiral design, all the curved lines curving in the same direction, and then redrew the same design over the first design, but with all the lines curving in the opposite direction. I was so pleased with the results that I had to do several more in quick succession in order to explore the possibilities!

Dream Catcher #3. 7/12/10
   Of course, the center of the design, where all the lines converge, is the weak point of each design that has a center. It's kind of like how they say that the laws of physics break down within a 'Singularity' because of the extreme forces involved. Science! Well, when I've got a couple of hundred lines stretching towards the center, I have to do something with them before they converge there, or each design would end up with a messy mass of black ink at its core. But after I wrestle all those lines into some sort of order, I've got to fill the center of the design, (the bulls eye) with something, right?
   Hmmm... maybe I'll do a special post someday - featuring only the very center of all my circular designs, to show the various solutions I've come up with to answer the question, "Well, that looks pretty good, I reckon, but now what do I do to fill the hole at the center?" What would I call a post like that? "Plugging The Hole - A Retrospective"? :)

Wrecked Tangles. 7/15/10
   Wrecked Tangles is a throw-back to some of my earliest designs, where I started with total randomness and created a design by imposing order on the chaos. I did that by drawing little circles around the speckles on a piece of grey cardboard (the kind you sometimes find as the back cover of a notebook) and then playing 'connect the dots'. Well, starting with a blank piece of drawing paper, I didn't have any speckles to play with, so I drew some. I drew a bunch of concentric circles and semi-circles with my compass, and then placed a dot where any of the lines crossed. Then, with teeth gritting determination, I drew a whole bunch of rectangles. Except for the two triangles at the top and bottom of the design, every block of color in the design should have 4 sides. Now, if I'd made every block of color a triangle, it stands to reason that the design would have ended up at least one third more complex, but it is what it is!

Summer Cubed. 7/23/10
   Summer Cubed is a fairly simple 9 color design. It started as a hyper-cube, but then I wrapped it in a 3-point braid design and linked the two together with a shared color scheme. Why, it practically drew itself!

Sky Blue Monkey Wrench. 7/30/10
   This one has elements in common with Summer Cubed; external symmetry, internal randomness, and a 3-point braid motif. But I tried something different with the colors. Usually when I color a structure design like this, I'll pick trios of related colors to color the top, left and right of each part of the structure to help create the illusion of shadow and depth. With this design I added 1 extra color to throw off the pattern. I called the extra color the 'monkey wrench'. In this case that color was Sky Blue. Ta Da! Another title is born! I tried the 'monkey wrench' color thing a few more times, then stopped.

   Now here's a peak at a few works-in-progress!
New Old School - B & W
   Some parts of the line segments in the braid portion of this design were about 1/32 of an inch apart. I have to stop doing that before I go blind!

Work In Progress. 4/25/15
   I might title this one, "Thinking Inside the Box" or "Death And Taxes, 3.0". We'll see.

   And now for the high point of my week, and I'm sure of yours... Kevin Koastie! Yaaay!

OK, we've got elements of Buck Rodgers, Star Trek, Lord of the Rings and now Star Wars all mashed together. I've got room for just one more action/adventure/fantasy/sci-fi franchise to lampoon at this time. Which should it be?
Thanks everybody! Sorry for the delay. Please think good thoughts/pray for my dog Katie, she's very sick. Have a good week!

Friday, April 3, 2015

2015 Fresh - March.

IMAO Link of the Day: Finishing Things "In Progress".
   They closed down the place I work for a day in honor of Good Friday. Or they decided to give everyone a 3-day weekend that just happened to coincide with the celebration of Easter. Whatever.
   The point is I have an unexpected and unpaid vacation day and I feel like Dustin Hoffman in that movie, "Rain Man" as the minutes counted down to The Peoples Court TV show with Judge Whopner! What ever shall I do with all this spare time?

   So I decided to use this time to present the work I completed in March, 2015! That's the month that we just finished. It's 31 days long. Yeah, definitely 31 days long. April has only 30 days. 30 is a even number. You can divide it by 2 with no remainder. Yeah, definitely an even number. 31 is not an even number ... it's a prime number ... Oh Oh! Prime number! ... I'm a very good driver!

   Man, I need to make myself some coffee! (a brief time passes) Ah, better now!

   A few weeks back (2010 Quasi-Fresh - March. 2/25/15)  I showed a Work-in-Progress.
This One!

I said (concerning this design), "The tricky bit will be selecting the right pallet of colors. If I do it right, it'll look Fabulous!"
Fabulous. 3/2/15
   Then I got back to work on that Phoenix design again.
The Phoenix, 2nd Draft. 3/6/15
   Then I pressed on with another version!
The Phoenix, 3rd Draft. 3/10/15
      I changed the logo to make it easier to read, and modified the color pallet and the color progression, but it turned out to be a pretty good blend of random and ordered. You can almost smell the burning feathers!

   This next one was a fluke that inspired another new development which kept my interest for most of the rest of the month of March.
Cloud Grey Window. 3/13/15
    I've done these single-strand ribbon designs before, but a fluke in the dimensions of this design make it unique. I call it 'Cloud Grey Window' because I began coloring one of the ribbons with my Cloud Grey pencil, and the ribbon Just Wouldn't End!  The whole central part of the design is cloud grey, with streaks of cloud grey extending to every point of the design! Because I draw the ribbons in segments, and then later connect the ribbons at the edges, where they change direction, I had no idea that the one color would predominate the finished design that way. Now, this design was almost symmetrical - the fluke that broke the symmetry was in the extensions at the top and bottom of the design which I'd worked in to fill up the corners of the Window - 'cause it's supposed to be a window, see?
   So I started a little quest to explore ways to deliberately add 'flukes' to my designs that would preserve the symmetry of the outer edges of the designs, but allow great freedom for Randomness to do it's thing within the designs!

Doubled Random Dream Catcher. 3/14/15
    The center of this design reminded me of a checker board, so I distracted myself from my previous distraction by drawing another design that was extremely checkerboard-ish.

Circular Checker Board. 3/16/15

    Well, I couldn't leave that alone, so I played with the checker board motif again in my next design, but I also went back to the internal randomness quest as well. Oh, and since St. Patrick's Day came and went while I was coloring it, I added a layer of green to the design in honor of the holiday!

St. Patrick's Day Doubly Random Dream Catcher. 3/20/15
   After working out the doubly random design with a couple of dream catchers, I decided I was ready to try to apply the design structure to another single strand ribbon weave design.
I showed it 'in progress',
I mean this one.
And here's the finished design!
3.625 Times Around - (Doubly Random Single Strand Weave). 3/21/15
   By this time, Palm Sunday was rolling around, and I realized I hadn't done a single Easter-related design yet! So I used the oval motif I'd used in the previous designs, warped it into an egg shape, and made it Triply-Random! (but with lots of light, pretty colors 'cause Easter!)
Easter 2015. 3/24/15
Notice the little ring at the top? I drew that there to mark the beginning and the end of the longest continuous ribbon in the design. Follow the path if you can and you'll see that it's almost endless!
(but if you follow it long enough, you end up on top! Hmm... Did I just find an Easter metaphor in my Easter Egg design? If I'd done it deliberately, it wouldn't have worked - but since it was a fluke, something unplanned, just one of those things... yeah, I'll take it! Yay!) Happy Easter!

   Now we're almost done with March. Here's one more Triply-Random weave. With this one, I made the ribbons dark, and the background colors lighter. The result is gloomier than the above Easter egg, but I drew it closer to Good Friday, so gloomier is appropriate. But Sunday is a'coming!

Triply-Random Single Strand Weave with Complex Color Progression. 3/28/15

I couldn't resist! I have to play this video too!

Oh, and here's Kevin Koastie!

The fewmets have hit the windmill now!
Well, now it's time for me to get ready for church! Be Blessed!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

2010 Quasi-Fresh - June.

   This week I'll be showing the work I completed in June, 2010, a new Work-In-Progress, and an exciting follow-up episode to last weeks exciting episode of The Adventures of Kevin Koastie! Yay!

IMAO Link of the Day: 5.833 Times Around.

   On a personal note: I finally got my pre-ordered copy of Frank J. Fleming's new novel, SUPEREGO! Frank is such a sweetheart of a guy, he even autographed my copy! - by Frank J. Fleming!
The book is Super Cool! Go buy a copy!
   Or in other words -
                                    SUPEREGO IS SUPER COOL! GO BUY A COPY!

5.833 Times Around. 6/5/10
   I was still experimenting with zig-zagging the direction of my lines to see what effect that would have. I thought it might look like a circle of multi-colored lightning bolts, but a lot of people have told me that it looks more like a chorus line of high kicking dancers to them!
   I was stuck for a title for this one, so I just calculated how many times I'd gone through my selected color pallet and called it that. 5.833 Times Around. I left part of the design un-colored, 'cause it looked good enough to me just the way it was.

Furious Gloom (Mask). 6/10/10
   I've shown this one before 'cause it's one of my favorites. (in a creepy sort of way). It doesn't have any eyes, but they still seem to follow you. Brrrr!

Fractile Cross #2. 6/16/10
   Fractiles are simple in design, but hard to draw because of all the fiddly-bits.

Casper Walking His Dog. 6/22/10
   I started at the top and bottom of the design and worked my way to the center, adding layers of color. The grey, green and red bits in the center looked like a ghostly, swirly, extoplasmic entity leading another smaller ghostly, swirly, extoplasmic entity on a leash. So I says to myself, "Hey! It's Casper, the friendly ghost, taking his dog for a walk! Cool!" And that's how a title is born!

Random 12 Step Fractile, Mostly Red. 6/28/10
   Fiddling with this kind of pattern eventually led to the discovery of Ninja Stealth Monkeys, but I wasn't quite there yet.

   Now here's another Work In Progress - I actually stopped work on this one last night, so I could do my Kevin Koastie cartoon instead. As you'll see when I do my 2015 Fresh - March post next week, I've been experimenting with new ways to randomize my designs. This one is Triple-Random!

   And now Kevin Koastie! As our episode begins, our hero and Mr. Sprock are cowering on the floor as Strange and Terrible things are happening to Dr. McKoi! Man! What a Party! Hmm... it needs a Theme Song!

It's a good thing the Doctor had been drinking cheap bourbon all night,
or he never would have survived the transformation!
Well, that was fun! Stay tuned for more art and more adventure at!

Friday, March 20, 2015

2010 Quasi-Fresh - May.

   Hi everybody! Big news tonight! If I did it right, you should now be able to visit my blogspot by going to ""!
Much easier to remember than "", right? I bought (or more like leased for a year) the domain for $12.00! Yay!
   Anyway, tonight I'll be showing the work I finished in May, 2010. I've also got a few works-in-progress (which is mainly why I'm posting this Thursday night instead of Sunday night; I got distracted again), and a world-shaking new episode of The Adventures of Kevin Koastie! Enjoy!
IMAO Link of the Day: Now With a Rememberable URL!

Cooling Stars Tapestry. 5/5/10

   I figured out a pattern of six-point stars, braided them together, added a three-point braid to fill in the design, and then colored it from the top-down, using progressively cooler and darker colors to suggest lowering temperatures. Brrr! I feeling cooler just looking at it again!

   This next one was created specially for a art show I appeared at as "The Featured Artist". I made about a dozen Xerox copies of the un-colored version of this design to pass out to any kiddies who attended the show, so that they could try their hand at coloring them in themselves. It may thus be considered my chronologically first ever 'Picture Page'!  But at this blogspot, it was shown as 'Black & White Test #4'.
I mean this one!
   Anyway, here's the finished, full-color version!
Simple Complexity. 5/8/10

Blue Crosses. 5/17/10
   Blue Crosses is now part of my 'Special Collection'. It's special because I'm holding the collection for a friend who said she wanted to buy them but couldn't afford them right now. I've been holding them for over a year so far, but since no one else has expressed any interest in buying them, I guess it wouldn't hurt to hold them a while longer.
   My memory being what it is, I can't remember why I have so few pictures from May, 2010.
Did I take a vacation? Did I sell some? Give them away? I can't imagine that I went from the 8th to the 17th without drawing Something! But I only have one more to show, and that one was completed on the 27th! Oh well, I'm sure I was doing something I thought worthwhile at the time. (shrugs)

Pulse. 5/27/10
   Pulse marked a break-through for me. I realized that it was OK to change directions in mid-design, and that it might actually be a Good Thing! I did a sequel called "Pulses" but I can't show you that one because I'm definite that I Did sell that one!

   Now, where was I? Oh yeah, works-in-progress! I got distracted last Saturday with a new idea for a design that would be random, but symmetrical at the same time. It worked, and I intended to set it aside and draw my next episode of Kevin Koastie, but I when I was finishing up the middle bit, it gave me an idea for another design! Filled with the fire of inspiration, nothing else would do but that I immediately begin another design to explore this new idea! Stay tuned for my 2015 Fresh - March post to see the details of my brain-storm weekend. But I can give you a hint of what it was like now because the design that inspired the second design was set aside while I finished the second design and is so now still technically a work-in-progress, even though it's Almost done.

Work-In-Progress, Almost Finished.

   Now this one also inspired the one I'm working on tonight. I started it after I finished the latest episode of Kevin Koastie. I had time on my hands, access to paper and my drawing tools - of course I was going to start something new!
   Anyway, the two designs are exactly alike, except for the places where they're completely different. Their oval shape reminds me of a Thumbprint; and like a thumbprint, no two designs in this format will ever be exactly alike! Each has 72 points within the design that were determined by random numbers. It's unlikely that I'll ever use the same combination of random numbers again, and of course, the secondary elements can also be almost infinitely various. Oh, and I also found a refined technique for stretching circles! Yay!
Work-In-Progress, Just Started.

   And now, beginning a new chapter in The Adventures of Kevin Koastie! In this episode I finally decided on a name for The Doctor.
Here's a hint!

   This episode also reveals the Secret of the "Deviously Complex and Unguessably Random" Activation Code!
   To all who offered suggestions as to what the solution to either of these mysteries should be, here or on my facebook page, I say, "Thanks! Have a Musey!"
This Musey's for You!

Hit the Deck! Duck and Cover! I have no idea what may happen next!
I had to scan this one in Greytone mode because of my crude attempt at cut-and-paste photoshopping, but what the heck!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

2010 Quasi-Fresh - April.

   Hello again! Tonight I'll be showing my work from April, 2010, another work-in-progress, and a action-packed episode of Kevin Koastie! (No, really, there is some actual Action in this episode!)
IMAO Link of the Day: No, Really, Actual Action.

Tension. 4/8/10

Dark Tower (Death and Taxes #2). 4/14/10
Dark Tower was completed on April 14th, 1 day before Income Tax returns are due. The title seemed 'apt' to me!

Two Butterflies. 4/20/10

Earth Day Mask - Mostly Green. 4/22/10
   You know what they say about all those Earth Day Hippie types, right? They're like watermelons; Green on the outside, Red on the inside!

Seven Netted Stars. 4/29/10

Aaaand that's it for April, 2010! Now here's another work-in-progress! (Still working on perfecting that Bird thing!)

The Phoenix, 3rd Draft - Incomplete.
   Last but not least, Kevin Koastie, in which I reintroduce the character of The Doctor. I didn't get any suggestions for what the Activation Code should be, but I've got another challenge for you. What should the Doctors name be? I mean, Kirk = Kwirk, Spock = Sprock; those were easy! But McCoy? How do I twist McCoy and still make it a recognizable parody? Or should I go in some other direction entirely? Any suggestions? Same deal as before - free Museys for everybody!

My apologies to Deforest Kelley.