Flip Flop Flying

Archive for the ‘Artwork’ Category

3,380: It’s a Sin

without comments

It’s a Sin by Pet Shop Boys was number one in the UK thirty years ago. Magnificent song. I like the Pet Shop Boys a lot. They’ve been solidly great for a really long time. The most recent album, 2016’s Super was excellent. Just looking at their singles discography on Wikipedia, to check where It’s a Sin was in a run of great singles, and it’s a really long run of top notch singles. From West End Girls in 1985 through to DJ Culture in 1991 there’s nothing that dips below an 8 out of 10 in my opinion.

While we talk about DJ Culture, I’m always interested in the quality of the new, previously unreleased tracks on Best Of compilations. More often than not, they wouldn’t appear on Best Ofs out of merit, but twice in the Pet Shop Boys’s career, new tracks on compilations have been amongst my favourite of their songs: DJ Culture on their first one, Discography, and Flamboyant on 2003’s PopArt.

Previous posts about number ones from thirty years ago:
18/1/2017: Jack Your Body
1/2/2017: I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)
15/2/2017: Stand By Me
8/3/2017: Everything I Own
22/3/2017: Respectable
29/3/2017: Let It Be
19/4/2017: La Isla Bonita
3/5/2017: Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now
31/5/2017: I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)
14/6/2017: Star Trekkin’

A wee bit of artwork
No title for this, but on my iPad it’s called Faceface, so let’s just go with that, eh?

Other business
What about, right, a fidget spanner?

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Jesus’ Blood Never Failed Me Yet by Gavin Bryars

On this day
The two best words are the first two words, 28 June 2007

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Super Mario 64

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 28th, 2017 at 1:50 am

3,378: Some drawings

without comments

Guten morgen. Another week, eh? They keep on comin’ along, the seven-pronged bastards.

Here’s some drawings. Some made with Procreate, some with watercolour and coloured pencil.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Bow Down by the Housemartins

On this day
Skookum Indian, 26 June 2008

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Professional wrestling aerial techniques

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 26th, 2017 at 1:10 am

Posted in Artwork

3,376: Self-promotion Saturday

without comments

Here’s three pixelly drawings that are now available as prints on my Society6 shop page thingy.

First, something that I gave a stupid name originally—CLWNMNTNJNNJNJN—but have edited down to CLWNMNTN on society6. Both of those should be pronounced “clown mountain.”

I really had no idea what to call this one; ended up calling it Silver Xs.

And here’s a drawing of parts of the Oaxaca city centre. I really quite like this drawing.

Those are the new things. There’s already quite a lot of other stuff up there, but if there’s anything of mine you would like as a print, lemme know in the comments, and I’ll endeavour to make it available.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Ship of Fools by Erasure

On this day
How to trim your beard, 24 June 2011

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Arena México

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 24th, 2017 at 12:59 am

Posted in Artwork,Blah blah

3,375: Meatwood flack

without comments

Following on from a recent post regarding Fleetwood Mac’s name, one thing I didn’t realise was that when the band started, John McVie wasn’t a member of the band. He was a bandmate of Peter Green and Mick Fleetwood in John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, but Fleetwood Mac’s first bass player was Bob Brunning. From Wikipedia:

When Peter Green left the Bluesbreakers in 1967, he decided to form his own group, naming it Fleetwood Mac after the rhythm section he wanted for the band – Mick Fleetwood and John McVie. Fleetwood joined up straight away, and slide guitar player Jeremy Spencer was recruited, but McVie preferred to stay with the Bluesbreakers, where he was earning a regular wage. In the meantime, Green hired Brunning on a temporary basis, hoping that McVie would change his mind. During this period, Brunning played with Fleetwood Mac at the Windsor Jazz and Blues Festival.

After a few weeks McVie did change his mind, claiming that Bluesbreakers leader John Mayall was turning too far in the direction of jazz for his liking. So McVie joined, and Brunning stood down. Brunning did contribute bass guitar to one track on Fleetwood Mac’s debut album Fleetwood Mac, “Long Grey Mare”.

I would assume, seeing as though John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers had about a million members over the years, he wasn’t that arsed about people coming and going, but it’s a pretty clear intention of taking another band member to name a new band after McVie. Maybe Peter Green should’ve full on flipped everyone out by calling the band Fleetwood Mayall, enticing John to leave his own band. Then Peter Green could’ve left Fleetwood Mac, and took over the Bluesbreakers. Peter Green’s Bluebreakers. I assume something like that happens in The Art of War, that book that dudes seem to enjoy (having on their shelves).

When you see a list of former members of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, it’s a pretty impressive bunch of people. The above mentioned Fleetwood Mac bunch, Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, Mick Taylor, Andy Fraser, three members of Canned Heat.

There can’t be too many bands that had greater success after a founding pivotal member left. When we talk about Fleetwood Mac nowadays, we aren’t usually thinking of the Peter Green-lead era. Depeche Mode is another. And, at least in terms of sales, Suede after Bernard Butler left. Any others? Can’t think of any right now, but there must be more.

Looking at chart success of the post-Peter Green era and pre-Nicks and Buckingham era Fleetwood Mac, they released six albums, only one of which entered the UK top forty. So seeing how successful they were with Nicks and Buckingham in the band, and the fact that they’d released a (great) album together before joining, could we view it as a merger? Maybe this happens a lot, but off the top of my head I can only think of one other example: Showaddywaddy. But that was a merger of two local bands, before any success. I guess that must happen a fair bit on local music scenes. Indeed, when I was living in Lincoln in the 1990s, every band seemed to have the exact same drummer, and every band member of every band seemed to also be in another band or two.

Anyway, here’s Minipop No. 1,343: Samantha Fox and Mick Fleetwood, a pairing that may not be obvious if you’ve never seen the 1989 Brit Awards.

A wee bit of artwork
I drew a curve. Copied it, pasted it. Again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and carried on until there are about 700 curves.

Other business
And here we are. The first shitiversary of the referendum.
Going well, innit? All going swimmingly.
The future looks absolutely peachy.
Rule Britannia, gallons of nice cups of tea, and as much Arctic Roll as you can eat.
What misguided fools us Remainers were, eh?

Here’s a couple of drawings from around this time last year. First, an angry drawing done in the hours immediately following the result:

Second, a drawing I’m actually quite proud of. The water could’ve done with a bit more attention, but on the whole it would’ve made a good editorial illustration, I think:

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Ship of Fools by Erasure

On this day
Drawings in a bar, 23 June 2010

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
1985 Mexico City earthquake

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 23rd, 2017 at 12:01 am

3,373: More Illustrator

without comments

After posting my first Adobe Illustrator drawing the other day, I figured it might be interesting to document the progress.

My eventual goal with Illustrator is for it to be just another drawing tool, like using pixels, Procreate, Paper, pencils, watercolours, or acrylic. But right now, I’m focussing on learning, not really that bothered about what style I’m drawing.

First was to try and draw lines and curves, a filled-in outline of a building, specifically La Catedral metropolitana de Panamá.

Then I had a go at drawing a pasty. Then a David Bowie tribute pasty.

It was a good sign (for my own brain) that when I realised I wasn’t happy with what I’d done, I tried again. A good sign that I’d not given up and just settled for what I’d already done. I tried again.

Still not perfect, but time to move onto another subject. All the time while I’ve been doing this, my friend Delme has been a great help: putting up with my dumb basic questions and explaining how things work. Generally being a fine fellow. (He has a great Instagram, especially worth checking out if you dig gulls and squirrels and dogs. Animals, I believe they’re called.)

While he was explaining some stuff, he sent me some of his drawings:

It seemed like a good idea to sidestep a little from doing my own drawings, and try to recreate one of Delme’s. In doing so, there’d be no temptation to ignore things, to find a way to pretend I’d meant things to be the way the are. No temptation to think, “that’s good enough.”

I got close. It’s not perfect. The lines in the hair aren’t as curvy, but it was a useful exercise in highlighting things I need to learn going forward. And by this point I was starting to really quite enjoy using Illustrator. I still have the temptation to close it down and return to the safety of pixels or Procreate, but I want and need to learn this damn program. And I spent all of yesterday doodling, playing around, clicking things to see what happens. I tried to do a self portrait. It doesn’t really look like me, but if someone were required to do a stylised police sketch, this is kinda what I look like.

The real joy of yesterday was a quite simple thing. I learned what happens when you merge two shapes. It makes fairly nice drippy, melty shapes.

(The Fernsehturm drawing is easier to see clearly when viewed bigger.)

There seems to be a glitch in Adobe Illustrator, though. I’m not entirely sure how this drawing drew itself….

The benefits of Adobe Illustrator are becoming clear. The frustrations I’m experiencing are shifting, I’m getting faster. One useful thing regarding Bezier curves—that I’m still trying to get my head around—was mentioned by David Galletly, (a wonderful artist), in the comments the other day:

If you’re fighting with the pen tool, I found this little game thing useful, if difficult: http://bezier.method.ac

At the moment, I still feel like I might fall off the bicycle, that I’m a bit wobbly. Once I’ve got my head around the Bezier curves, though, I’m hoping to be able to stop practicing how to use Illustrator and start actually using it. The thing I’m looking forward to most, though, is thinking in Illustrator. At the moment, any idea I have comes out of my brain as an idea for a pixel drawing or a Procreate drawing or a painting. All of the drawings above are things that come out of my brain like that. The Cathedral would be pixelly. The Rubik’s cube ice cream, too. The pasty and self portraits would’ve been Procreate drawings. I’m really looking forward to the thrill of an idea (still the best part of any arty endeavour for me) coming out of my brain and Adobe Illustrator being the first method I think of using.

Other business
There is no night today. Something I learned recently is that there are three different types of twilight. Between dawn and sunrise, and between sunset and dusk, there is astronomical twilight, nautical twilight, and civil twilight. And today in Berlin, it only ever gets as dark as astronomical twilight. Sunrise is 04.43, sunset is 21.33. This amount of daylight is something I’m not used to. The last six summers I’ve been in Mexico City. Daylight hours there today are 06.59 ’til 20.17. Six-and-a-half hours less than Berlin. It’s nice, but it kinda weirds me out a bit. It’s still entirely normal daylight at my desk until beyond 9pm, and then I’m suddenly aware that it’s nearly bed time. It makes me feel late for relaxing, if that makes any sense at all.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Misread by Fazerdaze

On this day
How to do a pixel head, 21 June 2006

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
1700 Cascadia earthquake

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 21st, 2017 at 1:30 am

Posted in Artwork

3,371: Animated thing

without comments

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Take It Slow by Fazerdaze

On this day
Denver, 19 June 2008

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Revolving restaurant

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 18th, 2017 at 11:49 pm

Posted in Artwork

3,370: Self-promotion Sunday

without comments

Society6 is doing a two-day promotion. 20% off and free shipping until Monday 11:59 PT (Tuesday 07:59 BST, 08:59 CEST). My stuff is here.

I’m gonna start putting up new stuff from the archives more regularly. So if there’s anything of mine that you like that isn’t up there, get in touch and I’ll do my best to rectify that. I added four drawings to the shop today.

This is a brand new drawing of some houses in Real del Monte, in the state of Hidalgo in Mexico:

Tower City:

A graphic representation of the provinces and territories of Canada:

Parque del Muro, a drawing of Mauerpark, (kind of):

So yes, if you fancy a bit of me on yer wall, clicky here. Thanks!

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
I Can’t Put My Finger on It by the Housemartins

On this day
It’s Thingamajig Time!, 18 June 2008

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Western City Gate

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 18th, 2017 at 2:00 am

Posted in Artwork

3,368: A glass of beer

with 2 comments

Adobe Illustrator has been sat virtually unused on my computer for over a decade. I will occasionally open it, intent on finally getting my head around how the hell it works. Every attempt at that has lead to me getting frustrated and closing it down within minutes. But, I have a bit of spare time this week, so I decided now is the time to actually get to know how it works. I mean, it seems like it could be a useful skill, right? So I imported this pencil drawing of a glass of beer –

Noch ein Berliner bitte

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

– and had a go. Honestly, I’m not really finding it fun to use. But that’s because I have to stop every couple of minutes to find out how to do a thing on google or youtube. This is the glass of beer drawing done with Illustrator. I put it here so that, hopefully, I can look back at it in a year and laugh at my rubbish skills.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Friends by Fazerdaze. Four days in a row now for Fazerdaze. Only the third time this year that that has happened. (The other two were David Bowie and Stereolab.)

On this day
Flip Flop Fly Ball, 17 June 2009

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Brutalism

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 17th, 2017 at 1:20 am

Posted in Artwork

3,367: Argentine Minipops Week

without comments

The fifth and final day of Argentine Minipops Week. I enjoyed it, hope you enjoyed it, too. As we move anti-clockwise around the continents with these Minipops Weeks, we’ve had a European country (Germany), a North American country (Mexico), and now a South American country. Next month, it’ll be an African country. Which African country? You’ll have to wait and see*

* It’s Nigeria.

🇦🇷🎾 Guillermo Vilas 🎾🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Susana Giménez 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Soda Stereo 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Che Guevara 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Jorge Cafrune 🇦🇷 That's the last of the Argentine Minipops. Hope you enjoyed them. At some point next month, the Minipops Week will be 🇳🇬

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

German Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Mexican Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Argentine Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.

Written by Craig

June 16th, 2017 at 1:37 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,366: Non-Argentine Minipops

without comments

A couple of musicians, James Murphy and DJ Khaled:

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Friends by Fazerdaze

On this day
My second Coldplay review, 16 June 2005

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Habitat 67

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 16th, 2017 at 1:13 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,365: Argentine Minipops Week

without comments

I’m enjoying this project. The first one, the German one, was just me being slightly in love with Berlin again. And the Mexican week was a fairly obvious second attempt at seeing if this idea would work on a regular basis. Both of which, in terms of audience, were for the enjoyment of friends mainly. This is the first one where I’ve not lived in the country in question. And that has made it more fun in a way. To actually sit down and read about people I don’t know much about. It’s like I’m creating a little encyclopaedia for myself in my brain.

Anyway, day four’s Argentine ‘pops:

🇦🇷🎾 Gabriela Sabatini 🎾🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷🇳🇱 Queen Máxima of the Netherlands 🇳🇱🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷🎤 Carlos Gardel 🎤🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Tato Bores 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

There’s a slight mistake in the above Minipop, that blue pixel near the collar should be light grey. For some reason it was transparent when I imported it into the Argentine Minipops “frame.” I am ashamed, but it’ll be amended on the Minipops page, so not to worry too much, I guess.

🇦🇷 Alberto Olmedo 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

German Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Mexican Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Argentine Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.

Written by Craig

June 15th, 2017 at 1:44 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,363: Argentine Minipops Week

without comments

Day three of Argentine Minipops Week is a proper football day.

🇦🇷⚽️ Ossie Ardiles ⚽️🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷⚽️ Diego Maradona ⚽️🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷⚽️ Batigol ⚽️🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷⚽️ Alfredo Di Stéfano ⚽️🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷⚽️ Juan Pablo Sorín ⚽️🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

German Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Mexican Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Argentine Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.

Written by Craig

June 14th, 2017 at 12:35 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,361: Argentine Minipops Week

without comments

Buenos días. Day two of Argentine Minipops Week.

🇦🇷 Eva Perón 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Moria Casán 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Ernesto Sabato 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Florencia De La V 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Juan Manuel Fangio 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

German Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Mexican Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Argentine Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.

Written by Craig

June 13th, 2017 at 1:46 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,360: Roses and cilantro

without comments

A couple of digital drawings of plants. A pixelly one of a rose plant which I started in the Pixaki app, finished in Photoshop. (This is no slight on Pixaki, it’s just that I do quite often these days. The beauty of Pixaki is it’s a way to do pixel doodles when I’m not sat at my desk, but finishing them off, changing things, is quicker in Photoshop.) The cilantro plant was done in Procreate.

With regard to the use of the word cilantro, it’s not an americanism. (Not that there’s anything wrong with americanisms, generally, apart from “bangs” instead of “fringe” and the horror of “I could care less.”) It’s just that some words come naturally in the language I’ve said them most. I still naturally say brezel instead of pretzel simply because I rarely said the English word when I lived in English-speaking countries, and I’ve said it way more often in Berlin. Likewise coriander. I can’t say for certain that I never bought it when I lived in the UK or Berlin (where the word is koriander), but I know that I bought cilantro a couple of times a month in Mexico, thus it’s the word that immediately comes to mind.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Hasta Que Te Conocí by Juan Gabriel

On this day
Sketches from a road trip, 13 June 2011

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
International Exposition (1867)

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 13th, 2017 at 1:28 am

3,359: Argentine Minipops Week

with 2 comments

Hola. Today we begin the third in an ongoing series of weeks where we, royal we, put up a load of Minipops from one country. Some old ones, some new ones. As promised a few weeks ago, it’s Argentine Minipops Week this time. A country I very much enjoyed visiting in 2008, and have dreamt about living in ever since. Five Minipops a day until Friday. Six today, though, because I’ve done two versions of Lionel Messi (one from the World Cup in 2006 and one I did of him earlier this year).

Argentine Minipops Week 🇦🇷🇦🇷🇦🇷🇦🇷 Minipop No. 906: José de San Martín

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Minipop No. 1,329: Cristina Fernández de Kirchner 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Minipop No. 1,326: Astor Piazzolla 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Minipop No. 1,330: Ricardo Fort 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

🇦🇷 Minipops Nos. 1,111 (2006) and 1,307 (2017): Lionel Messi 🇦🇷

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

German Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Mexican Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.
Argentine Minipops Week: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5.

Written by Craig

June 12th, 2017 at 1:16 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,356: DB-Baureihe 481

without comments

Here’s a drawing of a Berlin S-Bahn train. Specifically, the DBAG Class 481 train. Here’s a Wikipedia article about this particular type of train: German/English.

This drawing, though, looks bigger and better viewed on Instagram on a mobile device, where I’ve split it into four drawings that you can swipe left and right; makes it look like a pwoper twain going by.

DBAG Class 481 train, Berlin S-Bahn

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

Another wee bit of artwork
The future former prime minister.

Other business
Good idea, this: “Focused on environmental change rather than flavor, art students Hung I-chen, Guo Yi-hui, and Cheng Yu-ti from the National Taiwan University of the Arts concocted a line of “frozen treats” titled Polluted Water Popsicles.”

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Hot n Cold by Katy Perry

On this day
Die Schiedsrichter Maschine, 10 June 2006

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Black Sea

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 10th, 2017 at 12:08 am

3,355: Tea

without comments

Here’s something I thought would never happen: I think I’m slowly switching to being a tea person in the morning. I’ve been a coffee person for as long as I can remember. Instant coffee at home, something from the art school vending machine, instant coffee at the office, cappuccino from local cafes in Berlin, or from Starbucks in Mexico City, and in the last few years, via a cafetière or Bialetti Moka thingy.

Tea is something I remember drinking as a youngster, but at some point in my mid-teens I stopped, didn’t really like it, and never bothered with it again until about five years ago when I was a little bored of coffee being the only hot drink option aside from the occasional Ovaltine.

I bought some Earl Grey and forced myself to get used to it. It didn’t take too long. A couple of weeks, I think. I got used to it, and then started to enjoy it. Just English Breakfast and Earl Grey, though. I’ve never enjoyed the fruity tea stuff. Smells like someone’s making jelly.

But for the last couple of weeks, instead of automatically making coffee when I get up, I’ve found myself making a cup of tea. It’s still more coffee than tea. But out of the last ten first-thing-in-the-morning-drinks, I’ve had tea four times.

This got me thinking: do our tastes keep on changing? I don’t think it’s too presumptuous to assume most of us make most of the changes we’re gonna make in our twenties. When we try something again as an adult for the first time in ages. In my head, I don’t like rhubarb. But I’ve not eaten it since I was a teenager. Dates and plums, too. Maybe I would like them now. I still can’t get my head around chicory, but if it’s in a salad, I’ll just get it down and out of the way.

But yeh, a minor thought. Nothing big or spesh today. Just a quicky blog post. Have a good weekend.

A wee bit of artwork
Covv and Mooonlight.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Viva La Vida by Coldplay

On this day
Motorway blocks, 9 June 2014

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Bosphorus

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 8th, 2017 at 11:51 pm

Posted in Artwork,Blah blah

3,354: One Love Manchester

without comments

I wasn’t able to watch One Love Manchester when it was on telly live, but thankfully the whole thing’s on Ariana Grande’s YouTube channel. It was a beautiful concert: perfectly judged for her audience and the circumstances.

Liam singing Live Forever was fantastic. Coldplay’s version of Don’t Look Back in Anger, too.

Coldplay showed exactly why they are so great and so popular. Fix You and Viva La Vida were fantastic.

But, of course, the star of the show was Ariana.

When I watched it all yesterday afternoon, there were many moments when I had a lump in my throat, tears in my eyes, but Ariana singing Over the Rainbow to close the show… man, that did me in completely. I have no idea how she kept it together enough to be able to sing it all.

A wee bit of artwork
Pyyramid2, drawn with the Ipad app Pixaki.

Other business
Please.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Flash Delirium by MGMT

On this day
Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and beyond, 8 June 2008

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Bosnian crisis

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 8th, 2017 at 12:00 am

3,353: How I Minipop

without comments

A couple of weeks ago, when I was doing the Mexican Minipops Week (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) I made an effort to do something with one of the ‘pops that I’ve not done before: copied, pasted, amended every step of the process.

Usually what happens is I work on the same drawing, changing, erasing bits, adding stuff until it’s how I want it. This time I did something, copied, pasted, make mistakes, corrected mistakes, until it was how I wanted it. The Minipop in question is this one of Juan Gabriel.

🇲🇽🎤 Juanga 🎤🇲🇽

A post shared by Craig Robinson (@flipflopflying) on

The specific moment in his career that I drew is from this live concert in Mexico City. This song below (Hasta Que Te Conocí) is, in my opinion, his best song. One of those songs that is close to being perfect. It’s nine minutes long, and it’ll be the best nine minutes you will have today if you click play unless, y’know, something really good happens, and in that case: congratulations.

So, how was that for you?

Great, right?

Back to the drawing process. I thought Juan Gabriel would be an easy one right from the off. But I’ve been doing Minipops long enough to know that often the thought and the reality aren’t always the same. I have four abandoned attempts at Kim Jong-un on my computer. You’d think he’d be an open goal, but he’s tough to get right.

With Juan Gabriel, I started with the clothing. This is bad practice on my part. Normally I try to do the head first. If I can’t get the head right, there really is no point in carrying on. But I guess I was blinding by the sparkles of Juanga’s threads. I always begin with a template figure who is about my height (5’7″) and adjust it up or down and adjust the skin tone. First thing with Juanga was to make the skin tone a touch darker. Mostly his clothes are black so that part was easy, and he looks like generic art director in the second figure. I drew the jacket decoration in grey first, just to get the pattern right, then gold-ed it up. Two tones of gold-ish colour to hopefully indicate a bit of sparkle.

Time for the hair. His hair is quite distinctive here, but not actually easy to draw.

I went through a few different attempts. It’s long-ish at the back, but there’s quite a lot of volume at the front, in the fringe (or “bangs” if you absolutely must insist on calling it that, North America). It’s almost got a quiff-ish quality to it. But as you can see, my first four attempts weren’t getting that.

Next step was awful, trying to add more volume by making the whole hair thing bigger. After the second step below, I was close to giving up, thinking he’d be another in the pile of “un-Minipop-ables.”

And it really was by chance that from the second drawing below I moved the top three pixel section of the head one pixel over to the left, like you can see in the third drawing. The quiff-y bit hanging over, way out (ie. one pixel out) from his head. That seemed to click. This is why I sometimes think of Minipops as reverse caricatures. Normal caricatures accentuate the features, but with Minipops it feels like the same idea in reverse: taking out everything that isn’t needed. In this one, a bit of both is happening, cos his fringe isn’t as big as that, and the hair at the back doesn’t poke out like that, but it seems to work. With Minipops, I’m not doing an accurate drawing of a person, I’m trying to draw what you think of when you imagine that person. The last of the drawings below just adds a dark tone to the jawline.

Most of the time, that’d be the point where I would stop. The normal Minipop style is standing straight, arms by the side, just like my Uncle Harold:

But there’s a moment at 4m 56s in the above clip where he’s shimmying with his arms outstretched. You can see the tassles on his jacket, and it seems to fit the idea of Juan Gabriel more than an Uncle Harold pose.

First attempt was simply rotating each arm 90 degrees, but that made them look a bit long. So I shortened them by one pixel each.

And then tried to put a bit more movement into the arms. Neither of these were particularly successful.

Thankfully, I’ve done enough Minipops now, where I’ve quite often experienced any posing problems before, so I go to the archive and see how I’ve dealt with outstretched arms in the past, and found this one of Luciano Pavarotti, which, I should note, I just spelled correctly on the first attempt.

Double thickness arms, a bit more gold, and a microphone added. Getting a lot closer. Nearly there.

The shortened arms from a bit earlier needed re-lengthening again. The outstretched-ness needed it. And the final touch: the tassles.

And that, dear reader, (and thanks for reading), is how I Minipop. Sometimes they are easier than that, but Minipops like this are the most satisfying. Having moments like that in the middle where I’m ready to abandon it have a nice cumulative effect of stopping me from giving up on a drawing way more often.

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
Let’s Get Lost by Carly Rae Jepsen

On this day
My Coldplay review, 7 June 2005

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
Austria-Hungary

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 7th, 2017 at 2:22 am

Posted in Artwork,Minipops

3,351: Fußball in Berlin, game 27

without comments

This blog post’s title is inaccurate, it wasn’t in Berlin, or anywhere close. It was a proper away day in Wismar, up north on the Baltic Sea coast, about 250 kilometres from Berlin, about three-and-a-half hours on the train. The last day of the Oberliga Nord season, FC Anker Wismar v Tennis Borussia Berlin. A fairly nothing game in terms of things to play for: TeBe were fourth before the game, Wismar sixth. Those three places were up for grabs (Hertha 03 Zehlendorf were fifth).

I joined about eighty TeBe fans on the train. Lots of group tickets were purchased which allow five people to travel there and back for just €11 each. We were on one of those double decker trains which I’ve never seen in the UK (or anywhere other than Germany, but that speaks to my lack of European travel more than anything else). We kinda colonised a whole two level carriage. There were other people, non-TeBe people, there but while there was drinking and merriment, this is a club whose fans do not in anyway appear threatening. I made a choice last week to have a bit of a break from drinking. Something I tend to do every once in a while. Sometimes it’s related to a spurt of cluster headaches which make drinking impossible, sometimes just for a bit of a break. It was interesting to be amongst people who were knocking back the beers and schnapps for three hours before we even got to Wismar. The amount that some people were drinking would’ve floored me.

It was drizzly when we arrived. A bit muggy. A brief stop at the harbour for some fish and chips, and a fun walk through some allotments and fields taking a short cut to the stadium, the Kurt-Bürger-Stadion. And what a lovely wee stadium it was, too. Like a lot of stadiums at the level, there was one stand, a bit of terracing, and some trees on the far side of the ground. It was nice to stand there and appreciate the joy that bigger stadiums don’t give you: trees. Beautiful green trees as a backdrop to a game of football. Wismar looks like a city that keeps itself clean and tidy with tourist money, and the town’s money has also seemed to have kept the stadium looking good. The main stand looked like some sort of horse stable building from the outside. To enter the main stand, there were doors. Proper doors. Wooden doors.

A few minutes before the game, some news started spreading around the TeBe fans: we only have ten players. I don’t know if this is true, it was just rumours that were going around, but it seems like players that hadn’t had their contracts renewed for next season had decided en masse not to travel, leaving Tennis Borussia with just ten players. No substitutes, obviously, and one of the goalkeepers playing outfield. It was a little odd. But, somehow it added to the occasion for me: I was in a town 250 kilometres away from Berlin watching a ninth game in a row (home and away) of a fifth tier German team that I’ve somehow come to care about.

Wismar were the better team somewhat unsurprisingly given the situation. But good gosh, Tennis Borussia played hard and with a lot of heart. They kept it 0-0 until the 65th minute, and a good chance to equalise a few minutes before the end of the game, just before Wismar went straight back up the other end and made it 2-0. Which is how it ended. The whole game, from kick off the final whistle, the Tennis fans were singing and shouting. It was incredible fun to be in amongst that. When the PA played Zombie Nation after each Wismar goal, and a few of the home team fans celebrated looking over at the noisy visitors, what they saw was TeBe fans dancing to the music.

After the final whistle, the knackered players came over. We clapped them, they clapped us. And we all gathered ourselves together, and as one trudged back into the town centre. Some people got more beer, some had döners, I had a chocolate ice cream. Even more beers were bought on the way back to the train station. And somehow, people drank them and kept on partying. It was a long journey through fairly ordinary landscape, and I was happy, as one is on any journey back, when the train pulled into Alexanderplatz station, so I could jump on the U-Bahn to return home.

It was a splendid day. The bad result meant nothing to me, really. The day had been a victory. The nine Tennis Borussia games I’ve seen have been a victory (technically four wins, two draws, three defeats). I’m looking forward to the dates of the 2017-18 pre-season friendlies being announced.

Fußball in Berlin:
Hertha BSC v Eintracht Frankfurt, (25/2/17)
FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin v 1. FC Lokomotive Leipzig (18/3/17)
FC Hertha 03 Zehlendorf v SV Lichtenberg 47, (19/3/17)
Berliner AK 07 v FC Schönberg 95, (22/3/17)
SV Empor Berlin v 1. FC Union Berlin, (23/3/17)
VSG Altglienicke v FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin, (25/3/17)
Berliner FC Dynamo v Hertha BSC II, (29/3/17)
Hertha BSC II v FSV Union Fürstenwalde, (1/4/17)
Charlottenburger FC Hertha 06 v 1. FC Frankfurt, (2/4/17)
1. FC Union Berlin v Erzgebirge Aue, (5/4/17)
SV Babelsberg 03 v Berliner AK 07, (7/4/17)
SV Lichtenberg 47 v SV Victoria Seelow, (14/4/17)
Tennis Borussia Berlin v FC Hansa Rostock II, (15/4/17)
SV Babelsberg 03 v Hertha BSC II, (20/4/17)
FC Strausberg v Tennis Borussia Berlin, (23/4/17)
Tennis Borussia Berlin v Charlottenburger FC Hertha 06, (26/4/17)
SV Babelsberg 03 v FC Energie Cottbus, (28/4/17)
SV Germania 90 Schöneiche v SV Altlüdersdorf, (29/4/17)
Tennis Borussia Berlin v FC Mecklenburg Schwerin, (30/4/17)
1. FC Frankfurt v Tennis Borussia Berlin, (7/5/17)
Tennis Borussia Berlin v SV Grün-Weiss Brieselang, (12/5/17)
SV Empor Berlin v SV Tasmania Berlin, (13/5/17)
FC Hertha 03 Zehlendorf v Tennis Borussia Berlin, (19/5/17)
SV Tasmania Berlin v SC Staaken, (21/5/17)
Berliner FC Dynamo v FC Viktoria 1889 Berlin, (25/5/17)
Tennis Borussia Berlin v SV Altlüdersdorf, (28/5/17)
FC Anker Wismar v Tennis Borussia Berlin, (3/6/17)

A wee bit of artwork

The song in my head when I woke up this morning
I Don’t Wanna Live Forever by Zayn and Taylor Swift

On this day
My beautiful La La, 5 June 2014

Here’s an interesting Wikipedia article
World War I

Self-promotion
Flip Flop Flyin’ Flip Flop Fly Ball
Behance Feedly Instagram Society6 Tumblr Twitter (@flipflopflying) Twitter (@manypencils)

Written by Craig

June 5th, 2017 at 3:09 pm