Thursday, January 31, 2013

Art Not Bombs

Your Ultimate Creative Arsenal

This shirt is best worn while making art with big gestural lines and fast rapid-fire marks. Get wild in it. Bring scribbles to your vectors, and put some geometry in your contours. Pow!

Since a young age, I have always been fascinated with flight. Growing up, my parents were good friends with a group of pilots. They specialized in cinema stunt work for movies. Every time I had the opportunity to go up in an airplane or helicopter, I took it. In the photo below, I'm in the center seat of a friend's helicopter. It was so fun!

As a youth, I would draw all types of planes -- jet fighters being the most exciting. Growing up on a healthy dose of Star Wars and G. I. Joe also fueled my love for flight. Other kids were infatuated with jets, too, and could rattle off all sorts of information about their technical aspects. I constantly checked out huge reference books from the local library because I was always more interested in drawing them than studying how fast they could fly or how much their payload was. 

As an adult, I am still enamored with jets, but now my focus isn't on playfully blowing things up from above.

Straight out of my sketchbook, here's a drawing of a jet from the front view, a composition I was toying with before deciding to push the dramatic perspective.

I used to draw planes like this, heh!

The inspiration for the composition of this piece came from studying photography of military airplanes where the whole arsenal of the jet or bomber is laid out on the tarmac.

In my studio, I have drawers of categorized art tools ready to overcome artistic challenges during the next bombardment of creativity. I took these out to get the arsenal of inspiration flowing. The piece started out as a much larger type of aircraft, but the sleek design of a jet really struck me.
Here's the concept alongside many others I've been working on. I love to draw thumbnail-sized compositions just to get ideas out of my head and onto paper.

The process of moving the design from paper to my Wacom Cintiq is where the piece really tightened up. It's always a challenge to keep the essence of a paper drawing when transferring into a digital format.  

I drew the art tools and the jet with the same dramatic vanishing points and even played with the idea of putting some geometry below for drama.

My focus was on establishing the right light source and shadows on the jet and the tools so they would visually read correctly. When placing the tools and jet in the same space, lighting consistency is an important element for visual continuity.

The color scheme went through several rounds of changes. The cockpit was even orange for a minute.

After the design was polished up, the color scheme was similar to the original intentions for the piece. I enjoyed the process of breaking this piece down to 7 colors while maintaining the look of direct light and cast shadows across the surface of the jet and onto the art tools.

Ultimately, we decided to make this piece in two colorways.

I'm definitely happy with the final design, and I'd say this is one of my favorite pieces of the collection. It has a good mix of hand-drawn line work and halftone patterns. I hope you like it as much as I enjoyed making it.

This piece is now AVAILABLE for Sale in the Shop, too! Click here to shop. 
Click here to shop the new Art Not Bombs Hoodie!

Thank you for reading. If you have any questions or comments, I'd love to hear from you. I'm really enjoying having an artistic conversation about this and all the pieces we'll be sharing with you over the next weeks. Simply post a comment below, and I will be thrilled to chat with you.