My First Painting Class

So last term I took my very first painting class. I did ok I think for first time painter, but far from anything worth mentioning. Which is why I am going to talk about each project in depth! We used mostly Oils, but there were a few times we used acrylic paints as well.

Here are all my paintings for the term. Don't judge too harshly! But if you want leave me a critique, as always, feel free.

24 x 20

The first abstract painting thing... I think looks pretty cool. It is extremely vibrant and colorful, and for a first painting I think I did a pretty good job... at what I dont know, but It looks better than some other first paintings I've seen (granted those were by second graders). In my intro to painting class on the first day we went around and talked about what painting experience we had. People had long resumes of their accomplishments and or skills, but when it came to me I said "I've used paint by numbers before". It got a pretty big laugh and the professor then went off on a long rambling speech. The thing was I wasn't joking, but thank god people took it as one.

We were given two weeks to finish the painting. I took a day designing and laying down color ideas. The painting is suppose to be grid based so I felt that probably all the people would do variations of squares and or what not to accomplish this. So I contemplated what I could do that was still grid based but without being obvious squares? Could circles be grid based? of course, but its still just a basic shape repeating, and thats when I came up with the idea of these organic shapes (that if reduced to basic lines or the negative space) would form a simple tic tac toe grid and then I thought, "well I might as well throw some circles in for good measure just to have some shapes and plus they look cool". People questioned weather it was a grid or not... the professor ruled in my favor... although i think hesitantly.


8 x 10

The small hand painting was just a quick study of my hand, it was literally done in... maybe five minutes. It was just suppose to be a mock up of tonal transition and conceptualization for the larger picture. It also gave me a chance to work with acrylic, and.. I dont know how I feel about acrylic. We had two weeks to finish the small painting and the larger hand painting.


18 x 24

The large hand painting is pretty far from done, the hand still needs to be rendered completely, and the background was suppose to be something but couldn't figure it out and so it became blue with these horrible yellow streaks... (garrish). I think the foreshortening and form of the hand are pretty good. For me each painting was an exercise in staving off frustration. I knew not a single thing about painting and so.... I wasted so much time just trying to teach myself habits about painting that I hardly had time to figure out technique, and when I felt I had finally figured out something technical, it turned out I had done no such thing. I felt really lost at times. It was really quite pathetic.


18 x 22

Now the self portrait is... really really really bad.... I mean really bad....I hate to admit that I painted it. The painting feels like it was painted by a third grade kid that eats paste all the time, that's who turns this kind of self portrait out. It is so embarrassing to show it, but I feel in the long run it will be a piece that I can point to and say, look at the progress I have made. Also to make myself feel better I always say, Van Goghs first self portraits look really bad. dont stare too long it sucks at the soul.

Anyway, there are things in the picture that resemble me, but its kind of a caricature of me really. I don't understand how to mix good skin tones (hence why Im like some other ethnicity), I drew the form nicely, but when fine tuning it and looking in the mirror everything became sort of wonky. The perspective gets all mixed up and discombobulated, There are harsh outlines, everything looks flat and stretched its very weird. I noticed that the eyes weren't aligned properly the day of the critique so I decided I could probably easily fix it with an hour before class. So i fixed it, the result was that I moved the eye to an even shittier position, I really dont know what I was thinking....

Anyway, I think we had two weeks on this one as well.


6 x 12 8 x 8

Now then we had a few class periods where we did quick 5 to 10 minute paintings on poster board from sketches that we made over the weekend. No pictures allowed just notes on color or whatever we sketched. the colors kind of run on these boards so it was interesting trying to learn how to paint on them.

1. the trees and contrails one is, well it should have had a better composition.

2. Sand dunes, i think that the sky is probably (even though its subtle) a very good representation of what was going on that day. I think the forms of the people are ok, but obviously simplistic because of the time. The ground is a bit... flat and... vibrant. I am color challenged it seems.

There were several more but I seem to have misplaced them, which could be a good thing.


24 x 20

and then finally the last one, the landscape (I included two shots one is kind of over exposed and the other one is dark, I couldnt get it quite right so its somewhere in the middle of these two). I think it looks better in person because I took a lot more time to think about brush strokes, as well as having had 5 weeks of getting into a routine. I was feeling fairly confident that I wouldnt completely suck ass at drawing or painting some trees. I believe we had 2 weeks and a class period to finish this.

I like it, i think I did pretty well. I am obviously still challenged by color, and I dont have a real nice concept of how to paint, but it looks ok for my sixth painting ever... who knows.

Theme Park Project Part 5: The Dark Tower Theme Park

CHECK OUT THE *Updated Drawing* OF THE THEME PARK!!!!!

Well here it is the last piece (if there are any critiques feel free to leave one or more if you so desire). There are a few things that were excluded and things placed where they were never intended because of time limits, but I have since gone back in and started to add the elements I wanted to put in but couldn't (ill address those as we see them). I would like to eventually color it, but I feel that is going to be further on down the road.

I did an incredible amount of research as well as used my already fairly good knowledge of the dark tower series to construct the world in such a way that it flowed, and showed all the major places from the book.

I will be adding a movie clip that shows the progress of my drawing, as well as really close up of each of the individual elements that will trace Roland and his parties progress through his world in the books as well as show you the attention payed to detail. So if I have forgotten something or linked things that dont make sense let me know so that I can add it or decide Im to lazy to add it before coloring it.

I hope you think its cool. The only last thing I guess I will say is that. I think the main thing to think about in visualizing the theme park is when you first walk through the front gate off in the far distance you can see the tower jutting up into the sky. So no matter where you are or what you are doing, you can always see it, and how you get there or which course you take is completely up to you.

It is the ultimate in theme parks, and as I mentioned before a better term would be immersion park.

The Dark Tower Theme Park Finished (in a sense)
(slightly smaller than 24x18)

Early Sketch. The Idea didnt change too much from this. The only real big thing is that It became wider so elements moved to fill in the sides.

Ok so I did blow these up to larger chunks but the video will have even closer pictures of the individual elements so I encourage you to check that out when I finally put it up.

One thing I should clarify for everyone is that, one of the elements I wanted to put in, but ended up not having time to do it all, is the idea of the Beams that hold up the dark tower. These beams were not physical beams but more like currents of electricity and each beam had an animal guardian counterpart. Each beam met at the dark tower, so two beams always had two guardians protecting it. Roland and his band of travelers traveled mostly along the beam of the Bear/Turtle (i believe it was turtle I could be wrong, its written on the drawing).

So to incorporate this idea into the theme park each beam would be an entrance into or an exit out of the theme park. What they go to or where they come from was not really thought of. However, I think there is only one Main Entrance and Exit to the Park, and that is through the Bear Door. So the other doors maybe would go to Elements of New York, Main, or whatever places Roland and his band visited outside of his world.

Enough about beams, if you dont know what they are then they are completely unimportant, and if you do know what they are then you already understand what I am talking about.

Top Left Corner: In this part of the Park you can see One of the Beams (eagle). You can see Odd Lane in the trees just to the right of the Eagle Door. Below that would be the Land of ThunderClap in it is Alja Sentiel, and Castle Discordia.

Top Middle: The Dark Tower, surrounded by the field of Roses and the stone heads. Below that you can see the final stop of Blain the Mono Topeka Kansas, and the highway system.

Top Right: The Forge of the Crimson King (town not finished and building not represented exactly the way I wanted it to be). A hole Into Todash Darkness, and the mountain for the doorway cave. You can also see that the Fish doorway is being drawn now that I have time.

This area is where the Calla will eventually be, but since the Calla is rather large it was one of hte parts that I didnt have a real good grasp on how to represent it and therefore ran out of time.

Below is another hill this is the hill that Rhea of the Coos lives on. It was placed here to take up room for the Calla and later will be moved down with the rest of hte Mejis stuff.
To the left of the coos hill you can kind of see Eyebolt Canyon.

Mid Left: Thunderclap, Blaines Mono Rails. Below that the city of Lud and the waste lands, to the right of that the giant forest, and Misty Mountain Range. You can also see the coastline and the doors from the second book.

Harder to see is the Rivers Crossing and the Circle of Stones that Susannah encounters the demon.

Mid Mid: Topeka kansas, the highway system, lud, at the bottom the weigh station.

Mid Right: Eyebolt Canyon, Coos Hill, Mejis, Susann Delgados place, and bottom is Citgo ail pumps, and a bad representation of Jericho Hill

Bottom Left: The beach and the 3 doors, lud, rivers crossing, the nazi plane, the weight station, misty mountains, the swamp and circle of stones that is first encountered, a start to the Rat door, and the corner of Tull.

Mid Bottom; Top left is the weigh station, to the right, Brown and Zoltans place, and tull

Bottom Right: Jericho Hill, Mejis, citgo, and Gilead


Theme Park Project Part 4: Blaine The Mono

Check Out the map of MidWorld in the Theme Park Project Part 5:
Dark Tower Map 

I have also recently updated the midworld project here is the newest version

*Updated Mid World Map*

(I have recently finished this to the point of what for now will be considered completion. It is currently in the art show so when that comes down Ill get better pictures and post the revised edition. I also added some new stuff to the Blaine the Mono drawing.)

This drawing consists of Two drawings, One an Illustration of a ride in the theme park, and an Orthographic of some important piece of equipment used in the ride.

For those of you unfamiliar with the books, Blaine the Mono is one of two trams that run from the city of Lud. Patricia (a pink Monorail) and Blaine. Patricia I believe is somehow sabotaged by Blaine (i cant remember) but Blaine is basically HAL from 2001 a space odyssey.

The machinery in Rolands world seems to be breaking down, and Blaine is no exception. The Gang escapes on Blaine as the horde of the waring "grays" and "pubes". Blaine takes them through the waste lands that lie beyond LUD, but the moment of safety is short lived, because the party finds out that Blaine intends to kill himself and everyone on board.

Their only chance of escape is to stump him with a riddle. The book ends as the party is trying to come up with a riddle to stump Blaine, but he has easily answered all the riddles thus far and the destination on the map is getting closer... it took Stephen King 5 or 6 years to finish and release the fourth book... a very very long cliff hanger indeed. So here is my rendition of what Blaine would look like.

Sketches of Blaine, the front gate, and some other structures that never made it into the finale theme park drawing.

First sketch of the Blaine the Mono ride Illistration.

The first draft of the illistration

The second Draft, you can see I moved some monsters and removed my crappy mock up of blaine the mono

My first attempt at rendering Blaine the Mono

My second Attempt at rendering Blaine the Mono

The finished illustration with the second rendered attempt on Blaine the mono. By drawing the mono on a separate sheet of paper I knew I could use a light table to transfer it (even though I find the transferring of drawings VIA light table to lack something). This would help save on erasing and the possibility of ripping the paper.

The transferred and Finale Image
You can see that the Mono came out a bit squished and flat. I will eventually go back and fix it, but due to time this is where it was left. If you enlarge this image you can see in the background the Mountains and Woods that the party first enters into in book three. These were added after the class but were always intended to be there.

And here is the Finale Orthographic of Blaine the Mono.
Think it looks pretty good. I think the only one I dislike is the Back view.

Theme Park Project Part 3: Main Street of Tull

So just like Disneyland, when you enter The Dark Tower Theme Park, you enter into a town. This town also happens to be the first town Roland (the protagonist (of sorts) of the dark tower series) enters in the books.

This drawing is basically a Plan, or Elevation drawing (just the fronts of the buildings) to show what the buildings look like, the height, etc etc.

Also because this is a systems drawing class there is no shading, color, or any of that jazz so it is hard to show how distressed and old the wood is without muddying up my drawing. So, the idea is basically its an Old West town, think of an aged Deadwood, but just as tough and rowdy as it is shown in the HBO series with the same name.

Ok so here is the left side of the street in Tull. In the background you can see the Misty Mountains off in the distance. The three buildings are a hotel, a grocer or good store of some kind, and a tavern.

(click to enlarge) (P.S. all photos on this blog should be
clicked on to truly get a sense of the piece)

Here are the close ups of the buildings

you will notice that there is a large blank square above the top windows. This would be the hotels name or whatever, but to include lettering would mean that I would need to include lettering everywhere and there was no time to entangle myself in that aspect of this project as well.

I do plan to go back and actually add the signs to the buildings, probably add color, maybe even do a full rendering of the whole town.

Merchant Store:

Tavern (which I can't remember if this place had a name or not):
Of the three buildings this was the only one that was even mentioned in the book, and I don't know even how much it is described, so don't get all pissey if it isn't absolutely correct.


Theme Park Project Part 2: The Idea Behind The Theme Park

When we presented our final project we had to give a little speech as if we were talking to a board of people who were looking to fund a theme park project and then answer any questions they might have.

I was pretty much drawing up until the point of turning it in so I had no time to prepare a speech. Which really bothers me because I really hate being unprepared, and I love to give speeches.

My speech went something like this.

The Dark Tower is my proposed theme park. It is based on the seven book series by Stephen King, that follows the last gunslinger as he ventures toward the mysterious dark tower. It blends sci-fi and western genres in a most brilliant way. The other thing that king does in these books is that he uses the lore of the dark tower to tie most of his other books to this world (Salem's lot, insomnia, IT, the stand (the list goes on)), King also ties other authors stories into these books (wizard of oz, harry potter, star wars, tons of other stuff) as well.

The books are unlike anything King has ever written, and I find myself reading them over and over again. I have always been very partial to the adventure story. As a kid I loved to read and watch movies that had these epic adventures, like the princess bride, never ending story, star wars, dark crystal, labyrinth, the hobbit (took me awhile to read lord of the rings).

And like the books this theme park would be unlike any other, and would focus on bringing the gunslingers world to life. Once you walk through the front gate you can visit anywhere in Roland's world, and all the while off in the far distance you can see the dark tower looming in the sky. Impressively tall even at the furthest distance.

This would not be a park centered around rides like Disneyland, or six flags, the idea would be to explore Roland's world, to live in his world. Now of course there will be rides, like you could get on Blaine the Mono and ride through the waste lands, riddling the computer, or escaping the slow mutants under the mountain.

But where this theme park would differ would be that you could go to any place and visit with the characters straight out of the book, because the whole staff would live in the theme park and play as their characters and carry out their daily lives. So you could visit with any character from the book. This includes Roland and his band of travelers.

Throughout the day events would take place that the park goers could go and be a part of, or just spectate. Watch or participate in the battle of Tull, or against the wolves of the Calla. Watch as the city of lud breaks into chaos as the drums from a ZZ Top song emerge from the speakers. If its in the books, its here.

There is a large portion of the books that take place in New York City. This would be planned as a sister park later on. Patricia the Mono would shuttle people from one park to the other.

All guests would take up residence in the park for as long as they wish to vacation for. All the holidays would be done in accordance to Roland's worlds rules, and travel would be by horse, or buggy, or if you wish to walk, there is also that mode of transportation, or just see the sites. Explore places only mentioned by name, or explore vistas and places never mentioned in the books.

This is the ultimate theme park, so radically different that it would not even be classified as a theme park. Instead a whole new category would be created....

I give you the first ever immersion park

The Dark Tower


Theme Park Project Part 1: The Dark Tower Theme Park

The final project is extremely large so I will need to break it up into a few posts.

For the final project we were asked to create a theme park that does not currently exist. It could be anything we could imagine as long as we were constant with the theme and were successful in producing and maintaining that theme.

For this project we were asked to do 4 drawings.
1. A map of our theme park
2. an illustration of a ride in our theme park
3. an orthographic of a component of the ride
4. a street view of the main town or main street of your theme park

Drawings 2-4 had to have height and ratio measurements.

When we first started the class we were told about this project so we could put some thought into our idea early on. We didn't know what kind of drawings we had to do, but just that we had to come up with a theme. When first presented with this task I thought perhaps I could do a theme park called "Rock Legends" or something and it would be... well I dont know... a rock theme park.

However, after drawing my robot and being presented with the theme park idea again I realized that I was going to scrap the "rock legends" theme and instead try to make a Dark Tower theme park.

I wanted to incorporate all the major places and events in my theme park so I immediately started sketching ideas and referencing the books so as to get as many places as I could down. I also had the task of trying to combine all these places into a single map.

Over the next few posts I am going to put up the drawings and sketches and then I will finally have published all of my drawing systems work.

After that I have the paintings I did over the term that I want to post. Even though my painting ability is... well not very good. I think they turned out ok for never having painted before, but there are some real issues with my paintings. You will see...

I also want to post the drawing system blog winners. So every week the professor would take the top three drawings and put them up on the blog. It was my goal to be on the blog as often as possible. It also is cool to see not only my work but my other class mates work as well.

stay tuned!

Audio Interviews and other things

I have a few audio clips that I want to upload. This is something I have wanted to do for a long while now, but haven't had the chance.

These are a few clips from the Howard Stern show:

Kevin Nealon on crank yankers.
In this clip Kevin calls a gym and is asking about a trainer. Whenever the lady on the phone tries to answer one of his questions he immediately starts talking over her. It is pretty funny and worth a listen.

Jim Breuer Interview:
Now for me I didn't know too much about Jim Breuer other then he was on SNL, and the great movie Half Baked. I didn't ever really think about Breuer or if he was funny or not. It was awhile ago that I first heard him on Howard Stern and in that interview I came away thinking he was funny but it wasnt until this interview that I realized how really great Breuer is. His impressions and stories are so awesome and mind blowing. If you do anything, at least listen to his dave chapelle stories toward the end of the interview. truly incredible! I think his Tracy Morgan impression is probably his weakest, but the others are spot on.

When downloading or streaming its the GREEN download button you want. There is an advertisement on the page that says download just above the real download. Bastards!

Download Jim Breuer Interview

Stream Jim Breuer Interview