Monday, October 28, 2013

Friday, October 25, 2013

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Rejects, and What of it?!

  I got a reject yesterday. It might be the most comfortable reject I've ever gotten. My coworker put the customer in the chair and said "We'll draw you're daughter pretty" or something like that, and not to digress too much, but today was a day when I was trying to wrap my mind around what that phrase means. Maybe we'll get to that later, but she sat down in the chair with her boring boring face, and I was just trying to do something...anything, but there was nothing, or rather I felt nothing. 

  While it was happening I heard the mom complaining a little and asking questions, using words like "beautiful" and "ugly." She didn't say anything directly to me yet, so I kept going. But then she said "It doesn't look like her," and I turned around and made sure she said what I thought she said. She confirmed, and I politely and pleasantly passed her off to another artist. So smooth and easy. I realized that the times when I get worked up about a reject situation are the times when the customer overloads my fragile brow with some weird absurd thing I can't make sense of. 

Take for example what happened with these drawings. 

  As I was drawing the first girl, the mom was whispering to the dad about "What if she doesn't like it? I don't think she'll like it. Good gracious! Do you think she'll like it?!" Thus hinging everything on the reaction of the girl. When I finally showed her, though, she laughed and was very pleased, but the mom kept pushing the daughter in this way: "Are you sure you like it? Why do you like it?" But she didn't budge. She did like it, and her friend got one too, as you can see above. It certainly did come out lame, but it looked a bit like her, I guess, and she also laughed and was happy and satisfied. The customers paid and left and fifteen minutes later the dad came back, dropped the drawings off and got his refund.

  The absurdity is thick here. Much too thick. I don't even wanna pick it apart, but I will.

layer one: the word "like"
Like is...not quite the right word when we're talking about caricatures. In the best reactions I've seen, nobody ever shouts out "I LIKE IT! I LIKE IT!" Of course, this customer doesn't know this, but I could address it somehow, if it weren't for the other layers of nonsense I have to wade through in addition.

layer two: she's a child
And the jury is still out on how old a child needs to be before they are able to recognize likeness in a caricature.

layer three: she's a child
So it should be up to you, the parent, not her, to decide if this service that I've just provided is worth paying for.

layer four: who am I entertaining?
You might not know it lady, but this is for you to laugh at. Obviously I've failed, but we could share a chuckle about my failure together if it weren't for this lasagna of nonsense you've baked between us.

layer five: she likes it! you loose.
It seemed like a game back then when you were talking about "what if she doesn't like it?" There was this tension build up, and then I showed it too her, and I got the thumbs up from your daughter, Pontius Pilot. So, if the important thing is whether or not she likes it, and then she clearly shows that she likes it, why push her to not like it, unless your opinion about the drawing matters too, which was actually my position all along.

layer six: the drawing does look like her, if I do say so myself, and the really funny thing was that the daughter was the spitten image of her mother. Somethin fishy goin on there.

I may be leaving out a layer or too, but I've already been talking far too much.

Let me conclude. rejects are no problem. I would be fine with every third drawing I do being a reject, if it could be done clean and easy like that first reject. And while we're on the topic. I have one more reject to show.

  I'd classify this as not such a pleasant reject. Let's say the very first one was a ten. The two rejects from the big long story would be a one and this one a three. They were polite and straight forward, but they get a three because the likeness was good and they had a really good laugh. They came back two minutes after they left and rejected the drawing on the grounds of ugliness. They didn't mention the likeness. Had they complained about the likeness, even though I feel the likeness was strong, I would have given them a five, because, never know. You just never know. It's possible that us caricature artists become delusional over time. Let's try and not though.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

A hodge podge of Manliness

I drew Munyong again today. I like this one. If you wanna see what his real life face looks like you can go to the post I did a few months ago.

So why do photos look like people anyway? Something tells me that the only reason we say photos are what people look like has to do with the brutal reliable consistency of what a photo does--Anyway. Here's JongHo. I'm not gonna do a full post with a bunch of caricatures of him. I'm just gonna post the two I'm most happy with.

  Jong Ho's a fun guy.

  Smoking a cigarette. Interesting Fact: JongHo calls his cigarette's "cloud cookies." Many men smoke in Korea. I'm not too sure why, but I feel like it has to do with rapid industrial growth.

 This post will be all about men, I've just decided. Here's the old man security guard captian we call Mandu Ajashee.

   I don't know how I got him to let me take this. If he knew it was on the internet, he'd surely have my head.

  Here's a man's man, Bill Murray. I'm telling you, so you know. But I wouldn't have to tell you. If I gave ten random American people ten guesses to say who this is depicting and if they guessed it right they'd get a million dollars, I'm confident that over fifty percent of the people would have Bill Murray on their list.

 And for another Bill...

  This is a Bill Hicks I drew from an interview I saw on YouTube. Ok. This is what you'd call a portrait, right? But if I drew a nine year old girl and it looked like this portrait, it might be a reject. Oh, did someone say "reject?" Oh funny you should mention those. 

Here's a reject I got recently. I wish all my rejects looked like this 
 one. I'm happy with something about this. Maybe it's the hands.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Drawing is one of the Best Things

What if everybody stopped combing their hair, and hair became kind of like our own personal weather? We would stand back and appreciate it like a strange cloud. What's so and so's hair doing today. She's had an interesting month. One morning I woke up, and my hair looked like this...for instance. It's not the greatest thing you'll ever see on the internet, but I was proud of it at the time.

So it's been busier at the stands lately, so of course you know what that means— a disproportionate increase in the number of rejects. Busy times is when we draw faster and lower our standards and attract an audience that we can't relate to but we know how to entertain. 

But this was a reject. I wish I had a photo of the girl for you. Everything about her face was super obvious.....a little too obvious.  I'm sure I missed some things, and I'm even more certain I neglected the verbal interaction, BUT SHE WAS CHINESE! I can't speak Chinese, lady. I wanna just stare at you and classify you?

And then I get away with drawings like this.

 This isn't cute. Right? Here's the couple. It's a blurry photo though,
But look at all that bulk I added to her head, for one. So there you have it. People don't want cute after all.

They want this.
 What is this thing?! Why is his head like that?

Why is this a reject? It's hard to say. But it's easy to guess. I would guess that I was presumtuous. The line drawing is simple and then I colored it in to the point that it looks like it oughta not be that cartoony. The mom might picture a style that's constistant with the feel of the color, and in that visual language I'm talking nonsense... or it might be that I made a mistake when I wrote his name and accidentally said something bad about communism.

This is my friend Sergi and his girlfriend. Sergi's a fantastic live caricature artist, and he's very friendly and fun to be around. 

 Sorry about that sunshine.

One more photo.
Asian faces are bizarre. Look at the skateboard ramp between her cheek muscle and her nose bridge. Drawing is one of the best things because when we have strong feelings about something we see, we can show everybody and get it off our chest. If it wasn't for drawing and I saw somebody with a face like this, I might just think to myself, "Oh boy, here comes old so and so with that strange something about them."