Monday, May 29, 2006

"Las Amorosas" colour piece

I've been having fun with gouache, the medium I've never managed to get right, but thought I'd try it out for a colour piece for the Dear Pablo story I posted earlier. Maybe this would be a nice back cover (I picture the front cover being graphic, and if I do a series of these stories perhaps only the cover colour and title would change, as opposed to having an illustration on the covers pertaining to the story inside -- boring! predictable!).

I like hot reds, pinks and oranges next to greys and dark browns like I used in this piece.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Sweet stuff

I recently finished 63 illustrations for a kids' book on the history and culture of sweets, to be published this fall by Tundra Books. Here is a sampling (no pun intended) of the work I did on it. Incidentally, a few nights ago on CBC there was an excellent documentary on the history and politics of sugar, called Big Sugar. I had nightmares that evening. Thankfully I've been off sugar for a few years and plan to keep it that way.

The book is quite appropriately called "Sweet!"

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Chirp, chirp!

Most of my commissioned illustration work is in my digital style, using Illustrator for the shapes and colours and then adding shading in Photoshop, no outlines. This is one of my first successful pieces that was a vertical double-page spread published in Chirp magazine in 2002 as a family tree photo project. Guess where the family photos go... : ) I'm happy with this piece because I hate drawing animals but think this turned out cute, with that quiet winter feel of a grey day.

Friday, May 12, 2006

La Parra

As much as Victor Jara is a hero to me, he was influenced enormously by Violeta Parra who was also a folksinger in rural Chile, singing songs about political injustices against the poor, among other things. Here she is playing the charango, a crazy little guitar with 10 strings that is often made with armadillo shells. My charango is vegan. When I play it it sounds like the noise an armadillo might make. But not Violeta. She played it like an angel.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Dear Pablo

In my mind a superhero should take care of wounded souls and show some compassion to disregarded victims of love crimes -- and truly, aren't all crimes betrayals of love? I present Las Amorosas, a trio of urban women who work as sous-chefs at Juice for Life. Their love for humanity at the personal level has given them the power to sense others' pain and help heal them through unwavering compassion. This first story shows an Amorosa attending to one such broken-hearted lad.

Pen on paper, digital collage and photoshop.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

A hero to many

I am working on a personal project of "heroes". This is a result of thinking and pondering and realizing I had no one to look up to as a mentor in anything meaningful to me. How many people are lucky enough to know someone like this in their lives? Also, I thought more specifically of unsung heroes, especially Latino ones. This is Victor Jara, a folk singer from Chile who sang songs of peace and el pueblo before being executed during the military coup on September 11, 1973 in my birth country.

You may notice a variety of style in the Fran Pages... I have yet to narrow it down to a bonafide style of my very own, and may never do so...!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

To deaf ears

A summer ago I realized how preposterous my neighbours' behaviour was when it came to front yard care. Behaviour that included watering the interlocking brick (no lawn), presumably to clean it (instead of using a broom), and watering the garden as rain clouds were rolling in. These are a few little drawings that resulted from those observations, which I put together as photocopied little flyers and put in each neighbour's mailbox, many of which I found flying around the street later in the day. Drawn in pen and black watercolour.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Hello, friends!

Despite already having 2 other blogs (Fran's House of Ayurveda and Dumplings of the World, Unite!), I felt compelled to start a third, this one for my personal drawings, ongoing art projects and commissioned illustrations. I hope you enjoy them and I'd love to hear your thoughts on what you see.

This blog I think will push me to do less work and more art in my day, which is always a goal. On that note, til soon!

~ Claudia