A futuristic portrait with an abstract background. I put a lot of work into fading the detail from blurry to sharp at the mechanical eye and sunglasses. I did this mostly by using more pen-strokes and splotchier shading in the face, hat, and hair. The background took a significant amount of time to construct as well, and I’m proud of how it turned out. The buildings were traced from a photo of Manhattan. There was originally a creepy painted face in the top right, but my friend pointed out that it took away too much focus from the eye and face.
Here is the piece without masking the painted face:
I’m interested in whether you all think it is better with or without the face. I’d greatly appreciate the opinions!
Bit of a splatter portrait with composite elements. I wanted to set up a cool illusion with the main portrait sharing eyes with the inked figures and I think it turned out pretty interesting. Not too much to say, I think some of my blending got sloppy but the lips turned out very well (I very often struggle with hyper realism in lips).
Anyway, the workflow was more straightforward than it probably looks. I sketched the face on watercolor paper in ink, did some basic shading to paint over. I was heavier in the areas with less detail to draw focus to the eyes and mouth. Did a lot of basic splatter effects around the edges of the face, then painted the skin. After that I blended the components and added the red splash, the buildings, comic book photos, and clouds composite style. Blended those and finished up.
A mixed media painting on cold-press. Ink, watercolor, and photo-manipulation for the geometric overlay of the ink-splatter. The face near the middle connected to the smoke is actually a portrait I did when I was first getting into digital and mixed media. It saved me a lot of time to use that and I think it looks pretty interesting.
copr Blu-Art 2018, all rights reserved.
Another piece of my long standing zodiac project. This one means a lot to me. One of my best friends fell thirty feet in a climbing accident and hit his head on a rock. It took the doctors three days to determine he was brain dead. They took him off support last Saturday. He was a Gemini and my friend Kendra and I created a unique version of the image for his birthday, which was a week before the accident. He never got to see it finished, but I think he would’ve liked it. He was always supportive of my art. He was probably my only fan when I first started. He was just a good friend, always there for me, even when I wasn’t there for me, and even when I wasn’t there for him.
Gemini 93×104 inches
copr blu-art, Kochre, and arctic-ink 2018
Some minor issues, but we’ll fix them.
A straight photo-manipulation my friend and I made using a mix of personal and free assets. It was a fun day trip driving out to Des Moines to gather a plethora of photos, and this is what we came up with. I think it could have gone a lot worse considering our relative inexperience with photography.
Putting it together was also difficult, as we had something like three hundred pictures to comb through. Anyway, I had fun putting it together!
copr Blu-art 2018
One of my first attempts at a piece with an invisible background (not easy the way I paint). My style breaks down in cleanliness a little when you take away the background which I usually use for positive and negative space interplay, but this came out alright. It’s a little confusing to look at but it’s also a T-shirt design and I kind of like that it looks like a simple shape from far away but is also rather detailed up close.
It’s a mixed media piece. The women were done in ink while the buildings were photo manipulated into a fractal pattern. The pain splatters and textured splashes were painted digitally.
Here’s some examples of how it looks printed:
Anyway, had a lot of fun putting this together between exams and ER shifts this weekend.
Here’s a link to the store page if anyone is interested: https://www.designbyhumans.com/shop/t-shirt/men/metric-rain/952154/
Time lost up front.
You fell and it’s to late too fix the hole in your head.
So I’ll be there when they say it’s time, because I wasn’t there when I should’ve been. Time paid back in half…at best. Still, I’ll be there when they set you free, of that prison gravity put you in.
And at least your valves will work for someone who didn’t fall, but if I’m being honest I don’t care. Because their brain isn’t yours. There’s a romantic something to be found in the fact your heart will be pumping for someone else, but I liked your brain better than your heart. It was a good heart. You ran eight miles a day and left me in the dust whenever I tried to tag along.
I could blame the pseudo-asthma but the truth is you had a better heart. Figuratively and literally; a better heart. Which brings me back to the construct of you; your brain. Your dead brain. You survived the surgery and suddenly Kendra was right to have driven straight to Madison. You pushed through. But, it’s just as well, I’ll get to see you but I owe her an apology. The surgeon said you had three hours and I had eight hours of pavement to cover. So I cried instead.
Then we thought you were alive again. Until they couldn’t wake you up. So I cried again and at least Kendra was back to cry with me. I know I need to be there for her more than I have been too.
Fuck you for not using ropes. And fuck me for thinking it was cool every time you scaled a building or cliff face without them. Fuck me for not loving you back when you needed it and fuck me for taking so long to realize you were still my best friend. Fuck me for assuming you wanted nothing to do with me over that lie.
At least we figured it out near the end. Figured out we still needed each other.
And I know you want to leave now. I know you don’t want to be trapped in a coma. I know you don’t want to be buried so we’ll scatter you where you said.
Thank you for everything. Thank you for convincing me to keep arting, thank you for playing Borderlands 2 with me everyday after school for over a year because you knew I was lonely, and thank you for being there that summer during my surgery. Thank you for helping me cook for French class and convincing everyone I did it alone while I was in the other room. Thank you for thinking I was worth keeping around, and for believing in fate and love when I couldn’t seem to comprehend either. Thank you for taking the time to help me learn. I love you V.
And I’ll be there when they pull the plug and cut out your valves.
Phew. Been working on this one for a few months. A put out a smaller version a while back, then realized it had more potential. So I added, a lot. And made it huge. I’m proud of it. There’s a lot of little details that are easy to miss, especially when it’s shrunk down like this. (If you can find the negative space crab, I’ll be impressed.
I still need to clean up a few things (especially the lips and the transition to the waterfall). But I think it’s on track to be one of my most complex pieces.
94×73 inch digital painting
copr Blu-art and Arktic-ink 2018, all rights reserved.
A collaboration project with an old art buddy of mine. Been working on it over the past month or so and I think it’s coming along nicely. It’s primarily a digital painting but there are composite elements in the largest flower and the famous building I’ve forgotten the name of (both were free photos from unsplash.com that we reworked into the composition). The subject was also based on a photo which I masked over and painted/re-textured. That’s essentially the equivalent of tracing something, but it is still painted and I think she turned out well.
copr Blu-art and Kochre.
I moved away here from my normal hyper-textured/realistic style primarily because there isn’t enough skin to make it work. Most of the composition was just black…so we worked in little Easter eggs from the story.
I’m especially proud of the eye re-texturing I did specifically for this piece.
Here’s a closeup of the most recent addition. There’s some smoothing out to do still, but I’m rather fond of how it turned out.
Here is a close-up of the hands alongside a few of the more complex transitions:
I know it seems needlessly bloody, but the character depicted loses a finger during the act this heads, which is what it references. Furthermore, I did a questionable job on repainting the contour of the hand and messed up the skin color a little. The blood helps cover up the mediocrity.
The artwork displayed here is copyrighted and not available for any type of reproduction without explicit written permission from me. I’m pretty open to letting people use stuff as long as they pass along credit, so don’t be afraid to ask!
My Portfolio: https://arctic-ink.myportfolio.com/
My Deviant Art: https://arctic-ink.deviantart.com/
My Design by Humans shop: https://www.designbyhumans.com/shop/ArcticInk/
For me, if I don’t have an overarching goal, ambition, or thing that seems impossible to work towards; I go a little crazy. My mind is active and it’s like it creates internal problems that I have to solve but probably can’t because they’re ill-defined and not as pressing or relevant as they seem. Most would call this sort of experience anxiety, and I tend to agree. These go away when I have something huge to work on. My books, an ambitious art project, pouring my everything into my classes. I need to outrun myself.
I think the need to be improving, the need to not waste time is important. But it’s hurt every relationship I’ve tried to have or cultivate. Friends are easy to fit in but close friends and my ex’s all end up realizing I can’t relax. I can’t do leisure. I can’t make time for them when I’ve already scheduled out my day with thirty hours worth of hard work. And if I did there’s no guarantee they’ll like what they see. Anxious.
I’m overbooked, all the time…but I like that. It’s the only way I sleep. I need it, otherwise my mind goes back to torturing me and convincing me all these little problems and all the stuff from my past still matters when it doesn’t. It’s all or nothing with people, and it’s not right to make anyone my project, so they stay at arms length and I hope they don’t mind that I need to plow ahead with my passions. Regret never helped a soul and I’ve already learned from those mistakes. I don’t have a time machine, so I need to keep my eye on ‘what’s next’. Perpetually.
Okay, breaks over. Back to studying!