I just came across this new blog that a group of some of my favorite illustrators have put together. It's a colaboration from artists: Dan Dos Santos, Jesper Ejsing, Eric Fortune, Justin Gerard, Donato Giancola, Arnie Fenner, Jon Foster, Greg Manchess, and John J. Palencar. So, head on over and check it out if you haven't seen it already.
One of the best ways to get inexpensive fantasy reference is to head over to the local Renaissance Fairs. I try to make it to at least a few a year. There is one fair in particular that is unique to the others. The Tournament of the Phoenix! I was lucky to catch this event a couple of years ago, and from here on out I think I'll make it a yearly thing. At this fair, they have all of the same things you might find at any Ren Fair, with the exception of one thing...full contact Jousting!
A group of people from all over the world get together and hold tournaments. Just like in medieval times. They have Jousting, Skill at Arms, Archery, and various other competitions. Each event is narrated by a professional who turns each event into a great informative show.
I use the opportunity to snap hundreds of pictures. Everything from the action to details on armor. I was at this event this weekend for about 3 1/2hrs and I shot almost 900 pictures. Maybe I should just get a digital camcorder.
I even came away with a little souvenir. One vendor had a really cool display of handmade leather sketchbooks. Full with cotton paper. I couldn't pass this up!
Here are a couple of sketches from some of the reference I shot.
FINALLY!!! I pre-ordered this book 3-4 years ago, back when it was first announced. Let me start by saying.....it was well worth the wait!! All of the delays this book went through was done to make this the ultimate Bouguereau collection, and let me tell you, this is the ultimate Bougereau collection.
The Catalog Raisonné comes in a 2 volume set and both books are great. One book is about his life and work, which is quite extensive. The second book is a catalog of all his work with photos ranging from 1/4pg to full page and from black and white to color. My concern was that they were going to try and cut corners with printing a lot of black and white photos. This is not the case. The amount of full page color work in these books is great! There are very few pages that have no pictures, and with both books totalling 903 pages, they didn't pull any punches.
Now lets talk $, because if you want to own this book set, you're really going to have to pay for it. I paid $350 for an unsigned copy from the Art Renewal Center. They have a signed(by the people who put the collection together) copy of the book for $450. Now, Amazon has the book listed at $261.34, but has it listed as "Not yet released". So, I'm not sure how sure a thing that price is. I'm a little bumbed that I paid $350 at Art Renewal Center when Amazon is offering it at $90 less, but I'm just happy that I've got the collection.
If you're a fan of Bouguereau's work, this is a must have. ARC really did an amazing job on this!
This was done as a study in a class I taught. The class size was kind of small the last week so I took advantage and did a small painting. It's 14x11 oil on canvas board and I spent about an hour and a half on it.
I fianlly made it into a class to get some training in. I've been so busy with illustration work that I've been neglecting my study time. I found that I just have to make time to take class, otherwise I'll always be "too busy". This was a page I did in our 20 Minute Head Lay-in class. Each head is around 20min.