Night visitations

Just a quick sketch of an idea I had last week! I was thinking about my childhood memories and one was staying up late at night reading ghost stories! May do some more work on this maybe with colors and just how finished it should be. lately I’ve been working in more 2D flat dimensions. Its so fun experimenting with different ways to do things, I actually built this out in Photoshop from a sketch I drew in my sketchbook. 



Quick sketch of a selfie! Lately this is how I feel -_-  
Looking for a job is a full time job! Trying to stay motivated by making fun of myself. 
Up at the butt crack of dawn to everyday to search for listings and working on my art. 
Reminding myself that great things take time and patience. I know one thing for sure, is that I am where I want to be! Moving back to California never felt sooo good! Sunshine and waves, happy.

San Francisco Italian Cultural Institute Art Show Feb 6 – Feb 28

I just sent these two paintings to San Francisco the other day through the Academy of Art, they asked students who went to Florence last year to study abroad to send paintings in for the art show. These are two paintings I completed while I was there last summer. So if you’re in SF, stop by the 

San Francisco Italian Cultural Institute for the art show 

on Feb 6 – Feb 28. 

Super excited that I got asked to participate! 
These are for sale! 
 “Lucca, Early Morning Light.” 12 x 16 Solid wood frame.

“Cortona Alley.” 9×12 framed inside an 8×10 white/black matted frame. 

Painting Tutorial in Photoshop

I thought I’d write a post on a quick photoshop flat painting tutorial. Just in the last couple of months upon moving back to California, I’ve been tutoring art and design students on a part time basis and most everyone of them ask about process. I’m sure everyone’s process is different, but for the Photoshop novice, I’ll break it down here in a few simple steps.

Assuming you drew a quick sketch of something you wanted to paint in Photoshop, you’ve hopefully scanned it into the computer and opened it in Photoshop. So once you’ve gotten the image open, I would suggest double clicking the layer and naming it as drawing or whatever name you want to give it, I would leave this layer at the bottom and lock it so that it doesn’t move by accident or worse end up painting on top of it. Then create a layer on top and name this as the “Blacklines” layer, you want to keep this at the very top of the layers. This will be the layer that you will clean up the sketch with.

The next part of this, I used a wacom tablet intuos 5 which is great enough with precision that you can get smooth lines as you trace over your original drawing. You can use the brush tool to paint and increase or decrease the line weights to get a variation throughout the drawing. I used a crisper line for the outer lines and a more looser line for the inner lines. If you make a mistake and don’t like the lines you can always command Z to undo something. Or use the erase tool to erase your mistakes, or quite simply if you have a wacom tablet, flip it over to erase on the opposite end! Once you are done and are satisfied with the lines, I would suggest locking this blacklines layer at the top when you are done doing the outline of the drawing.

You can start painting different parts of the character and separating the layers, such as the hair, skin tones, shirt, legs, boots. And labeling the layers to their respective parts so that we don’t confuse ourselves! We do this for a purpose: In case you don’t end up liking the colors, you can click on the layer and selecting the layer by moving the cursor over the layer, pressing the command button or CTRL on a PC at the same time, than click that layer to select it. The marching ants will start to dance around it as it is selected. Once selected, you can choose a different color and double clicking on the foreground swatch color to bring up the color palette. Then press alt + option on your keyboard to fill in the selected area with the new color that you want.  Then you can take the lasso tool and paint in the darker parts such as underneath her leg and side of it. Also the inside part of her hair. 
The last part is adding the light source – when you figure out where you want the light source to come from, (which actually should be the next thing before you add your darks!) then you can darken certain areas where you know will be hidden from the light source. In this case my light source is coming from behind her off to her right side. I also created a layer on top of all of the the layers that I painted and switched the layer blend mode to color dodge. Depending on what mood you are trying to create for your light source, you can determine what color the light source will be. In this case I wanted a sunset lighting. And in Photoshop when you paint it over the other colors it will affect it a certain way, for example the light on her blue leggings look different than the light hitting her shoulder or the side of her hair. And if you want to create the shadow underneath her legs, you can create a new layer right at the very bottom and take the lasso tool and just draw around the figure as to where you want it to be. Than you can fill it in by choosing a color and pressing alt+option on your keyboard to fill it in. 
Don’t forget to save this working document as a PSD file! To save it for uploading to a blog, portfolio, for print, etc… you can save the image as a Jpeg or PDF by going to File > Save As. 
Any questions, comments, let me know! I hope that I explained this clearly! There you have it! Will upload my other processes next time! 

Imagining a story through a painting.

I recently joined a creative writing workshop last week and it was very enlightening! LA is a super creative city and I had no idea that it would satisfy all of my creative impulses! I enjoy drawing, animation, and writing– what better place to be than here. So we had a few writing exercises and one of them was to imagine a story through a painting. So here is what I came up with! Let me know what you think…


Eleanor had too much to drink. Elizabeth sat bored and observed the half empty bottle on Eleanor’s hand. Her older sister was nearly only five years older than her, but her ways of consumption of wine had done a number on her youth. She looked more like she was in her early forties than a woman of only twenty-five. All she did was spend her days sleeping into the afternoon and her evenings out and about disguised as a servant, gallivanting about the taverns drinking with the townspeople. What a way to destroy someone’s life, Elizabeth thought. For she spent her days outside absorbing the sun and reading the classics until it was time for afternoon tea. Knowledge was what she was after, her sister only had drinking to fill her.

Sacha Character Design

Here’ a sketch I did back in November that was part of a personal project that I was working on. There’s more, but I’m going to wait to post more later as I finish more drawings. Inked this in Photoshop and used my wacom tablet. I was playing with lighting and kind of liked how this turned out! I’m gonna make more magic this year, seriously it is on!! I don’t think there’s anything in the world I’d rather do than spend my time drawing and painting. Let’s see what kind of MAGIC I can create this year! No more excuses! Let’s get to work!