Facebook Faces Challenge

AHMM, Blown Covers, Business North Carolina, Facebook Faces, WSJ

This is a combined post made up of postings originally logged anywhere from March 28 to April 1, marking the very beginning of my Facebook Faces Summer Challenge from 2012.
A quickie today, owing to the fact that I had a lot of mixing to do on the JJHD cd, plus another extended band practice south of town for most of the afternoon. Day five in my ongoing self imposed challenge to draw all 173 ‘facebook friends’ in a variety of portrait styles (of course, now I’ve picked up a few new ones over the weekend, so the tally has increased). Today’s is of a clarinet player named Joel from another band who I met a few months back at a weekend gig at Rocky’s. Rather plain style but still trying to force myself to loosen up (an ongoing struggle with me).

Got up rather early this morning and chose another gal from my ‘friends list’ to tackle today as part of my self imposed ‘facebook challenge’ (doing a portrait of all 173 facebook friends based on pictures of themselves they have posted) This one I struggled with for quite a while and went through a lot of false starts. It was only after I abandoned all my regular methods and started out with a bunch of oddball colors and tried to forget about ‘capturing a likeness’ that it started to gel for me. I never did quite capture a decent likeness of this one (this is a girl who was my next door neighbor in Flint when I was 5 years old), but aside from that I like the feel of it.

Day Three of my self imposed challenge to draw portraits of everyone on my ‘facebook friends’ list Today I felt like a challenge, both to loosen up with color and with drawing materials, and I thought it was time for a girl. I picked one of the more obscure of my facebook pals, someone I barely knew and tried to choose one of the more unflattering pictures as a starting point. I’m kind of pleased with how this one turned out.
I see I just got an email with the go ahead on a ‘same day’ project I’ve been waiting to start, so I guess I better get back to ‘real work’.

No, the above isn’t a ‘New Yorker’ assignment, but a submission to a blog site that I’ve been reading avidly the past few weeks called ‘Blown Covers’ run by Fran├žoise Mouly and Nadja Spiegelman. They announce a theme at the beginning of the week, with a deadline of Thursday noon, and announce their favorites on Friday. I was a lurker for several weeks, and this was the first time I tried my hand at it. I believe I’ll make a habit of it, as it is a wonderful way of stretching the old concept muscles. And, no idea goes wasted around here, I ended up recycling the ‘fat lady’ concept for today’s WSJ assignment about the ‘end of the current bull market’ (pictured below in two versions, with and without background).

Day two of my self imposed ‘facebook portrait challenge’, and this one is of a friend from high school, Mark from Mississippi, one of my first ‘band buddies’, a bass player and photographer for the school paper and yearbook. Lots of photos to choose from on his page, but I was drawn to his wonderful expression on his current profile picture. For a medium today, I was originally going to do it in my traditional scratchboard style, but at the last moment switched tools and used a pencil instead of the usual scratchboard stylus. While I didn’t stray too far from my usual technique, I did like the pencil’s softer feel, and I think it helped me loosen up just a tiny fraction. I liked both the black and white and color version of this one, so saved a version of each.

Our heat wave has passed, and we are back to more traditional March weather (although with a lot of trees sprouting leaves way too early and wondering what the heck’s going on). Work has slowed down a bit here at the end of march, but I’m plugging away at it one day at a time as usual. The above illustration was a spot for Barrons for the coming week (or next – I think I got it done early). Below are a few sketches for upcoming projects.

Last summer, when I hit a dry spell, I decided to challenge myself with a ‘drawing a day’ goal for myself whether or not I had actual assignments on the docket. This year I thought I’d start something similar, and decided I would try and do a portrait/caricature/drawing of each and every one of my facebook friends based on photos they have posted of themselves (which should be tricky in some cases). I plan on doing these in a variety of styles, depending on my mood/whims and available time schedule. One down and one hundred and seventy three to go. This first one is of my Uncle Lee from Sun City Arizona.

If nothing else, this should give me lots of face practice and beef up my ‘portraits’ archive.