Friday, November 11, 2011

Celebrity heads

I also finally got to completing the first stages of some new sculpture heads. A few of these have been sitting under my computer table for well over a year. I decided to branch into a larger scale in an effort to get a likeness better, then reduce the scale of the sculpture to my regular size of around 1/6th. I wont say who the heads are supposed to be yet since I need to mold, cast and paint them. I'll wait until I can be sure the likeness works when I add the realistic eye and hair effects to it. I have seen some excellent portrait heads get ruined by bad painting. The top two heads are of a pair of horror movie actors who frequently worked together. The other male head on the second row is an oscar winner--I did the head ten years ago but the likeness wasnt quite right. You can find the completed original sculpture somewhere back in the archives---I used the head on a sword and sorcery inspired sculpture. A couple of years ago I came across a truly outstanding portrait sculptor who did a perfect likeness of the same actor--he had access to screen captures which I did not have at the time--but I vowed to come close to matching that sculpture when I refashioned my own, using the same clay head form ten years ago(since they often survive the molding process). The final two heads are actually of the same person--an actress I have never seen in a movie but turned up in online photo sites. She is one of those people who tends to look different in different photos and i had a terrible time locking down her likeness. Women are generally harder to do than men I think, but I did the best I could and am glad to have it in the mold stage. I have another few heads that I need to re-work(one of the downsides of being self-taught is not having the right amount of discipline when starting a sculpture--my heads tended to have slightly misaligned features because I never approached them like one would a drawing--when in fact it is very useful to mark a sculpture like you would a 2d image--getting the nose and eye and mouth placement so you dont need to go back and make corrections(which I have had to do way too often). These heads will mark the new generation of my figure sculptures--assuming I dont get distracted. They have been the lowest priority of all my art pursuits.

The new book cover

I mentioned several posts back I had put out an Arabian Nights novel several years ago and was planning to redo the cover. Well, I did it faster than I expected. I released the book in a new revised (and cheaper) edition as well as electronic versions. Will I sell any? I dont know but I do think the cover is a vast improvement over the original. Ironically I simply went back to the source models (although two are badly smashed up I still had photos of them) and used them as the main subjects in the cover and abandoned the painting style. The printed version has excellent sharpness-I was really impressed how well it looked in the proof. I hope to get a second book ready soon as it was rather satisfying working on this.

We're back

It has been a busy summer and fall. I am in the middle of rendering an animation which is taking weeks (for something that is approx a minute in length it is taking me 2 months--I need a second computer for rendering if I keep this up). My last post mentioned I was hoping to be done with it by the end of april. It was not to be! Far from it. In fact I was close to shelving it entirely. 2 years wasted. I ended up needing to upgrade my computer and discovering that much of the computer crashing I had encountered with the project may have been due to my system not being 64 bit, so I was able to resume working on the animation. It has been very slow getting it to the final stage as I added a few extra things (such as the spaceship above) but I have been able to work on other things as it has been rendering.