Monthly Archives: June 2010

Geek Love

While I continue my illustration work on the book, here are a couple drawings I did based on another book.

Geek Love is a book written by Portland-based author Katherine Dunn.  This book was required reading for one of my art classes.  Haven’t read it?  I highly recommend it.  Twisted, strange, and disturbing, this book is about a family of circus performers, also known as “Geeks”.

This first drawing is done entirely in pencil.

Here is a second, completed in ink wash, pen, and charcoal:

I know what you’re thinking.  What the hell?  Really, I didn’t even make this up – I mean, I could have, but I didn’t – it’s all in the book.  There is an amazing wealth of interesting and disturbing images that could be based on Geek Love.  I really enjoyed making these little weirdos.  Read it, for realsies!



For the current page I am drawing for the book, The End of This & That, I must recall my old lessons of perspective drawing.

possibly the most feared diagram of all time

Perspective drawing is relating a scene on a flat space – using forshortening, vanishing points, horizon lines, and linear extensions – as seen by the human eye.  Don’t want to talk about it much?  It’s cool – neither do I.  Let’s just go to a few examples.

Perhaps the best known example of one point perspective, all lines intersect at Sir Dude Jesus’ head.

Place de l’Europe on a Rainy Day, by Gustave Caillebotte, is an excellent example of two point perspective.  The main building on the left, has two vanishing points.  The artist also employs atmospheric perspective, painting the further points of the building a faded bluish-purple to trick the eye into thinking they are receding into the distance.

You know those “purple mountain majesties”?  You may as well just sing “atmospheric perspective majesties”.

Here is one of the masters of perspective, M.C. Escher, with his piece, Ascending and Descending.  This is an example of three point perspective, and also how one great artist can make all the rest of us look like we are just scribbling and drooling like cavemen on paper.

In art classes, perspective lessons are just as vital as color theory and human anatomy.  I’ve done quite a few in my time.  For a curvilinear, anti-ruler girl like myself, I always found these drawing sessions INCREDIBLY BORING.  But, alas, necessary.   The dirty, smudgy drawing above is a perspective drawing I completed while at PNCA.

I decided to insert a sea creature ascending the staircase to, you know, liven things up a bit.

OK, so the whole point of this was that I had to employ these skills while drawing the title page for The End.  It’d been awhile, and I started off freehand – NUH UH!

Rule #1 in perspective drawing: always use a straightedge.

So….I am going to treat you by sharing the inked piece.  The finished work I must keep to myself.

This drawing is a .20 Micron on 11 x 14″ Bristol board.  It took me over FOUR HOURS.  Good God!  I think my eyes started blurring out towards the end.  Like I said, I’m more of a curvilinear girl; a drawing of this nature requires more of my concentration.

The title of the book is going to be placed in the street, hence the open space.  Here are some close-ups:

This section is tiny, maybe 2″ x 3″.  I nearly needed a magnifying glass.  Beyond the truck is where one of the vanishing points exists.

The vanishing point for the left side of this building existed somewhere off the side of the paper, on my desk.  Fun.

Now for color and shading!  I hope you enjoyed today’s lesson.