Saturday, August 31, 2013

Daily Sketches Weeks 28-35

Really quick post since I am currently in New Jersey on phase one of my epic 2013 trip!

July 6 - unfinished painting from week 6 of class, on the CalTech campus

July 9

July 11 - sketches from The Drawing Club

July 11 - more

July 12 - coffeeshop sketches

July 13 - unfinished painting from week 7 of class

July 21 - Thadd and Jack passed out on the train back from Comic-Con

July 22 - very frustrated this night.

July 23 - this is an example of what I do on the days where I don't document what I drew. Mostly viscom exercises and head/form practices. Boring!

July 24 - more viscom exercises and a concept sketch for a painting I want to try...

July 27 - my favorite painting from class, week 8, at El Matador State Beach

July 31 - eyes

Aug 3 - unfinished painting from week 9 of class, Eaton Canyon

Aug 10 - unfinished painting from the last week of class, at the Getty

Aug 11 - getting ready for the trip by sketching some PARIS!!

Aug 14 - a house in Amsterdam, from a photo by my cousin Kelly

Aug 15 - completed house

Aug 21 - this took a while! watercolor of some houses in Florence, also from a Kelly photo

Aug 23 - just doodling

Aug 25 - starting a picture of Neuschwanstein, which we will be visiting at the end of September

Aug 28 - Neuschwanstein almost finished... when I dropped a big drop of ink right in the middle of the castle. Oh well..

**it seems like some of these are really pixellated for some reason, so I'll try to fix that when I get home...

Okay! That's it from me for a little while! I've got a Comic-Con recap post scheduled to go up while I'm gone, but other than that, I won't post here until after we get back, at the end of September. Hopefully I'll have lots of awesome Europe-y sketches and paintings for you!

Until then, keep calm, carry on, and MAKE ART.

© Gina Florio 2013

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

'How to Put Heart Into a Storyboard Sequence'

Friends, thank you all very much for your continued patience with my lack of regular posts. A lot of this year has been about finding a balance - balancing time between work, friends, Dave, general home and life management, and of course, art. I've always remembered Bobby Chiu in his audiobook, The Perfect Bait, saying "There will never be enough time. You have to MAKE time." And that's what I've tried to do this year. Sometimes it was successful, and other times, less so.

Of course, I've also heard that adult life goes more or less like this -  "House, job, kids, workout routine, hobby/passion. Pick three." Gulp. I've already picked three, but I'm planning on adding the other two down the line. Makes quite the case for turning your passion into your job.

I've been struggling to find time and motivation for drawing lately, but then I came across this short writeup today, "How To Put Heart Into a Storyboard Sequence," and it is just one of those great reads that reaffirms your passion for art and animation. The example used by author Francis Glebas is for the Disney movie Pocahontas, far from being my favorite Disney movie - but the example is just as powerful all the same. He takes you through a complete sequence step-by-step and explains his process for interpreting the emotion in the scene visually, which is the mission of a storyboard.

I encourage you to read the full essay. Words of wisdom: "You have to put your heart into your work, whether it comedy, drama, horror, action or romance. That’s our goal. We want to avoid boredom. We want excitement in our lives. We watch movies to feel alive and yes, that feels good. I’m still struggling to be better than my last picture…"

Later this week: one last Daily Sketch update before I leave for Europe for three weeks!

© Gina Florio 2013

Wednesday, August 14, 2013


Music, to me, is inherently tied up with making visual art. More often than not, when I'm drawing or painting, I'm listening to music. I have my favorites, but I try to listen to lots of different types of stuff. Music is just another type of art, an aural means of expression. Anyway, today, I wanted to write a little bit about this music video, which I've just discovered, and which brings me a lot of joy to watch and listen to.

When I was younger, I always heard this advice - "Just be yourself." "Dare to be different." "Don't worry about what other people think." "March to the beat of your own drum." This advice never made any sense to me, because as far as I could tell, that's what I was doing, and I was still generally unpopular. I was never bullied or anything like that, but I just didn't have a lot of friends. It wasn't until later, when I went to college, when I realized I actually wasn't alone, far from it. I just wasn't surrounded by the right people before. At the end of the video, when all of the separate dancers started dancing together, it made me incredibly happy, because it reminded me of how I felt when I met my friends at college, or when I went to a comic-con for the first time. Here were a ton of people, like myself, who had been alone before, but now here we all were, together, passionate about the same things.

The bottom line is, I'm now old enough to understand the true meaning behind the phrases I always heard in middle and high school, and the meaning behind the song and video. 'Be Yourself' isn't a get-popular-quick scheme, 'Dare to Be Different' isn't a blanket excuse for being antisocial or hating the mainstream, and 'Be Brave' doesn't mean operating without fear. Bravery is operating in spite of fear - being worried that you'll look stupid dancing all by yourself, but dancing anyway, because it makes you happy. And 'Be Yourself' just means, be the best version of yourself that you can be. Be the person you'd like to meet. Write the book you'd like to read. Draw the art you'd like to see. Because chances are, you're not as alone as you think.

© Gina Florio 2013

Monday, August 12, 2013

Heroes of Cosplay premiere / Pascal Campion - "My Two Cents on Portfolio Reviews"

Hi everyone,

First and foremost, my apologies for the lack of posts recently - as with all fun pursuits, real life keeps getting in the way. Work continues to grind nonstop, and landscape painting class and planning for a GIGANTIC Europe trip that le boyfriend & I have coming up is taking up the rest of my time. (And daily sketches, of course!) I haven't even been able to keep up with reading all my favorite art blogs as of late... actually, to be precise, my Feedly tells me that I am now exactly 515 posts behind. Le sigh.

While I continue the struggle to stay afloat on my own life, I'd like to inform you all of two things.

1. I've talked about my day job as a reality TV editor a number of times, and this past year, something glorious happened - I worked on a show I actually enjoyed and cared about. That show was called Heroes of Cosplay, and after many months of hard work and long hours, it is premiering tomorrow, August 13th, on SyFy at 10:30 pm / 9:30 central (right after Face-Off). I am not a cosplayer (at least not regularly, although I DID wear a costume to this year's SDCC), but I have nothing but respect for the cast of the show, whose creative talents and endeavors far eclipse anything I have even attempted with my own art. I had the pleasure of meeting many of them at SDCC (meeting the cast is not something an editor usually gets to do) and was blown away by their costumes even more in person than I was while editing footage of them in it. I can't really speak for the quality of the show itself, because it definitely did fall prey to many of the reality TV tropes at the behest of the producers (fake drama, hyped up stakes etc.), but I hope that it will at least be a great exploration of the cosplay world, which is fascinating, inspiring, and endlessly creative. Creatives of any type can benefit from watching other creatives work at their craft!

2. I found this blog post on portfolio reviews by the great Pascal Campion (of daily sketch fame) to be a great read: My Two Cents on Portfolio Reviews. I have yet to put together a professional portfolio (a goal of mine for 2014), but you can bet when I do, I'll be paying close attention to this advice. It makes sense, because to me, the goal of any kind of art is basically to tell a story. A portfolio should be your proof that you have the ability to tell a story, nothing more... and nothing less.

© Gina Florio 2013