Sunday, August 17, 2014


Another movie I enjoy is The Cooler from 2003, with William H. Macy, Maria Bello and Alec Baldwin. It's a warm and heart-felt story about the relationship of a "cooler", a person who is hired (by the casino) solely to spread bad luck for casino-patrons, and a struggling waitress. I don't think it's for everyone, but for me it really hit a sweetspot. I feel the story armature is something like "you make your own luck", and that sentiment appeals to me real strongly. I'm truly charmed by the characters as well. With these studies, I'm continually reminded how much subtlety is involved with painting faces.

So I've got about one more month before I start working in a studio again (Beenox/Activision). I'm really excited and thrilled, and I also feel that having taken a break from work and freelance since May has been really beneficial for me. I love doing studies, and working away at my weaknesses. Although my self-imposed art exile has taken a toll on my social-life, it's felt thoroughly meaningful and enjoyable nonetheless. Just sayin' :)

More practice of environments. Picture had some really nice shapes, and obvious atmospheric perspective.

Painty-strokey, trying to indicate and imply rather than spell it all out. Love the light, mood, and the story.

Today, chilled out hip-hop beats. This is mainly the kind of music I listen to while drawing and painting. Boom-Bap dope ya'll!!! ;)


Alex Bing said...

I love your studies man! So painterly! And I love how simple many of your strokes are.

I'm about to have an extended period of time to work solely on improving and I'm curious if you have any tips/suggestions on how best to use that time to do so. Did you set out weekly goals or give yourself a number of studies/concepts to finish? :o

Hope your future studio work goes well! :D

Johannes Helgeson said...

Hey man! Thanks :)

Hmm, I didn't really have weekly goals, I've tried to be conscious about choosing studies of images which I felt would be challenging, where I would have to work on a self-perceived weakness and do something new. Sometimes I felt like studying character-interaction, other times it would be about getting a lighting and mood, and sometimes about locating abstract shapes and simplifying detail. I've been kinda bouncing around, but I've tried to stay a bit outside my comfort-zone in general.

My over-arching goal was to get rid of my habit of making things over-rendered and too polished, and to be more painterly and loose. That was the primary objective since March this year.

Posting on the blog has been a good motivator to stay productive, every time I had 3 images, I made a post. Though I don't feel the positive comments, likes and affirmation should be a driving force of motivation, it can be a nice addition. I've aimed to post 2-3 times per week.

Thanks for the well wishes! I'll certainly do my best :) Take care and good luck with your studies mate!

Johannes Helgeson said...

Also I wanted to learn to use more custom-brushes, and to apply the smudge-tool. Learning new tools is something I've been very keen on.