Those Wasted Resources

Surprisingly this is not related to a video game class with a particularly complex series of skills that often results in a waste of their precious resource. It really isn’t. But it could be if you just believe!

It’s related to the age old theory of new artists who believe that they shouldn’t/can’t use expensive or rare materials for fear of wasting them. Admittedly it’s a logical conclusion as I know from having, well, let’s say expensive taste in art materials, that you often may end up using an entire batch of something in a wasted fashion. Look at graphic markers- £5 a piece! You wouldn’t want to waste that would you?

Now the answer to that question may shock you as it’s not “no”.

Not to say that you should willingly throw away great materials or deliberately run down rare supplies for the sake of it. But there is a certain amount of waste that comes with using new materials.

For example, in the case of bristol board, perhaps one of the most expensive boards you can buy, you need to get used to the way it works. How it can absorb that much ink. How it can be layered with colour, liquid or dry, and how you can continue to pile on the abuse which it will keep on taking. As far as even applying watercolour to it.
This is something that you can only learn in one way- by using it. You can psychically talk to it and discover its precious secrets (though I figure most people feel that way about women rather than paper).

So there is an amount of time you must spend wasting something.

Sure some materials are very expensive, like marker, or watercolour paper, or oil paint tubes- but you need to get hands on. You need to know what they do. If you shy away from them until you’ve “learned enough” you’re never going to touch them and that’s an even bigger waste. You’ve spent the cash- might as well use it for whatever you can.

It also begs the question of “how do you learn something without doing it?”

Think back to school, I’m sure we’ve all been, and all had to study something like mathematics with the endless hours of equations and theories, which lead to final exams. Why do you think that was? (And the answer is surprisingly not confusing torture with equations that no longer had numbers but letters.) It’s because you need to get the practice- you need to learn- before you can apply it.
Applying it came in the final exam where hours of (horrid) equations which (completely destroyed and) taxed your brain were finally put to good use. Well, as good as it could.

Point is- there’s a methodology in learning and using materials and you cannot skip that stage. It’s like trying to start a drawing with absolutely no sketch or concept, you likely would end up with something either perfectly illegible or a lucky brilliant streak.

So the next time you sit there, comforting your sketchbook for the loss of it’s brother sheet, as I can’t be the only one who does that, remember that there is a point to waste.

Or, rather, what you perceive as waste. Some people who’ve seen it probably really love it. Art is funny like that as most of it comes down to perspective, or personal or social factors, that influence what something means to you. To you it’s a horrid scrawling of lines and colours. To someone else it could be an example of primal use of colour and line to create something.
You really cannot tell. Which is both great and horrible…but that’s a story for another day.

Have a nice weekend, all!



Training Dummy

Possibly the first piece of training dummy art ever!

Never seen another on this continent or the next- but, then, is that really that surprising?

This is a spontaneous piece that I started last night and one that didn’t take very long to complete. It’s (almost) entirely humour based and not to be taken seriously in any way. Except that the training dummies in capital cities will one day revolt. You’ll see! You’ll all see. Then who’ll be the crazy one? …Probably still me.

Sourced from the forests of Azeroth.

Sourced from the forests of Azeroth.

I wasn’t originally going to share this here but it’s a new piece (of sorts) and I figured it would liven things up a little.

In any case- I hope you enjoy it!

Have a great week, all.


Art, design, and the like found herein (unless otherwise specified) is drawn and owned by David Wilkshire (also credited as Moggie) from 2006 to present date.

World of Warcraft, Training Dummies, Ironforge, and all associated trademarks and devices are owned by Blizzard Entertainment.

It Was Just a Year Ago

I was younger, more charismatic, healthier, and looked so much better in tight fitting swimming trunks. Can anyone say “beefcake”?

That, of course, being one of the many things that exist only in my head. I’ve never looked good in tight fitting swimming trunks! Anyway, there is a point to this post and it’s not to talk about any bulges I may or may not have in swimming trunks.

It has been a year or so since I had that great rush in 2011 where I felt I was going places with my art. Later, as noted in the last piece, I started to feel that while it was good it wasn’t as good as I’d first given it credit to be.
Throughout this year I’ve worked to replace a few and I currently have a work in progress designed to do just that. Though it’s not going to become a permanent trend- I just want to “save” some concepts.

The one thing that really stands out about these pieces is how much stronger (or better) they are. They have stronger anatomy, stronger sketches, stronger form, better depth- overall they’re just stronger pieces. Stronger! But that’s not all, the translation from concept to finished piece is clearer than before. Which is something I’ve had great difficulty with in the past.

So you can see how this would be making me happy, right?

On top of this already good news I’ve started doing a few more pieces that fall into the fantasy art category and it has been, well, quite awesome, considering how I’d been struggling with that too.
All in all I’m just really glad to be looking at work in 2011 which I felt was my peak and see it easily surpassed in 2012. If I can top that- maybe I can top 2012’s work? Maybe a trend to continue where my style continues to evolve? Still, I don’t want to get too carried away with it.

I’m doing better work and it looks nice and though I haven’t posted for a while I have a work in progress that just needs to be finished. Which could happen any day now.

Have a nice week, all!


July! No, really, it’s true!

You may notice that May and June were exceptionally slow months. I have absolutely no idea whatsoever what happened there, why it happened, or even how to not make it happen again.

Recently, over the last few months, even as far back as early April, the status of being one of millions unemployed in this country/city is starting to weigh me down. Oddly enough I have actually had a fair bit of good news and a bit of personal luck in that time.
Art…well, now, there we have a problem- I don’t really know why I didn’t do any in May and why (even after trying to jump start the posts) June provided one dismal update.

Restarting the fantasy art side of things is proving to be slightly less successful than anticipated, while otherwise my motivation seems dead in the water. I can theorise (all day and night) about why that is but really I don’t care for problems- I care for solutions. Or things, at the very least, which can provide me with solutions. Ideas, changes in circumstances, Chinese herbal remedies- anything will do!

I will say that the start of this year provided a rather slow and uninspiring run. I didn’t really do a lot of art and it took me a while to pick up the motivation for it once more, I was also bored, and somewhat restless, for the time between January and March 2012.
One thing about being unemployed is that eventually you do get bored. You have more time than you even know what to do with, which sounds sort of ironic as people never have enough time- but it’s true.

Equally, with London, as London is, it costs an absolute fortune to travel regularly to just about anywhere. So other than things within walking distance (with legs like these that’s a fair way) there’s nothing really to do in the city either, as far as socialising and going out with friends is concerned you can’t socialise and go out for drinks/meals when you have no cash.

So I guess I’m feeling a little burned out.

I’ve had a good run with art sporadically, while a lot of the recent employment efforts are long ventures into the small hours, or out of them, and generally speaking it has been a rather active period. Despite the fact that I am pretty much bored to tears around here. Not to mention sick of the sight of places that provide supposed employment support.
Trying to fill the empty void between the necessities and job searching is proving to be difficult and with art down that doesn’t really leave much else. Even gaming has come to an entire standstill for the time being.

There’s not much left I could do in Fallout 3 besides make a Melee Weapons and Unarmed character (don’t have one of those), but with a fair time invested in it- even that bores me to a point now. Fallout: New Vegas, while relatively unexplored, is a game that is a little harder for me to get into due to the way the systems now work and the varying restrictions on equipment.
Knew I should’ve bought the complete version of Fallout: New Vegas with all the DLCs in March.

Other than that there haven’t really been many new releases that I look forward to playing. Not looking into Torchlight 2, or the latest Legend of Zelda release, and about the only thing that gets me interested is Guild Wars 2 as I was (and still am) such a fan of Guild Wars.
Dragon Age: Origins I finished and, despite the customisation system, and replay value, I can’t actually get around to making new characters. Dragon Age II is something I have been meaning to play though.

So back to job searching and sitting around bored it is!

Really, this is an update, perhaps a little less like me, but something designed to bridge the gap between the artist and the real life person behind them. It’s hard sometimes to always find new things to talk about when it comes to art and even harder to output lots of new pieces regularly (for now)- so here’s a sort of general post.

Hopefully July will be a good artistic month and there are some very promising employment prospects hovering over me, which may mean it’ll be a good personal month too.

For now, however, I hope all is well with those reading.

Have a good evening!