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Thursday, February 21, 2019

SketchKon Sketches #14 The Los Angeles Zoo Part Four

The African Wild Dog.

I had the great pleasure of seeing a pack of these on a safari in South Africa in May of 2018.  The guides there told us such a sighting was quite rare.

There coloration reminds me of my own Dutch Shepherds.  Stripes and blotches designed to help them disappear in the shadows...


Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Affinity Publisher: A Quality Alternative to Adobe InDesign?

Many of you have heard of and used Affinity Photo and Affinity Designer, programs which are pretty widely reviewed to be every bit as good and in some cases better than their counterparts, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator.  Because of the price differences and because Affinity's products include full-featured iPad versions, many people have switched.

Affinity products each cost about $50 for the computer version and $20 for the iPad version. One-time purchase.  Updates free. 

But there has been no alternative to InDesign... which has kept many people who wanted options stuck in the Adobe creative cloud.

BUT Affinity released their FREE Beta version of Affinity Publisher a few months ago, and I just found out about it.  HOORAY!!   I hope to download it soon and start to poke around.  I've been panicking about the cost of an Adobe subscription... so this option excites me!

All the reviews I've read so far praise this Beta as a robust competitor, though clearly in early stages of design.  It does some things InDesign doesn't do that people like, and it lacks some features people miss.

If you need more in the creative cloud than Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, and of course if you've worked in them forever and are perfectly happy, paying that subscription price could be for you.  But if you are a newb or looking for an alternative, then buying these programs is surely more cost effective.  Even if you purchase all three for both computer and iPad, the total cost (without coupon or sales) is $210 (assuming that Affinity Publisher is priced like Affinity's other programs)...and since Adobe is $53 a month, well, you can see you even out in about four months.

Anyhow, I won't stick in a bunch of links, as you can Google for yourselves and check out reviews or demos or tutorials or whatever as you like.  Tons of things exist on youtube.  I am fond of the tutorials/reviews done by Brad Colbow.  And Affinity itself has lots of vids.

Mostly I just wanted to share!


I'd be really curious to see what others think if you check this out.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Real Life on Valentine's Day

A little sketch I did around Valentine's Day last year.  The hilarious card, the water bottle, the coffee pods, the sticky notes, the family photo, the dog brush, the cleaning solution for puppy accidents...

real life.







Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Sketchkon Sketches #12 The Los Angeles Zoo Part Two

I spent a lot of time observing the double-wattled cassaway.

This is a bird I have never seen before.  Roz pointed it out as something she had seen as a child, but not since.

It was so strangely put together--a real treat to try to draw!!  Also, frustrating!  Because my brain didn't know what to make of it!









Thursday, February 7, 2019

Sketchkon Sketches #11 The Los Angeles Zoo Part 1

When Sketchkon officially ended on Sunday at about noon, a bunch of us took a trip to the Los Angeles zoo to sketch.  Roz Stendahl served as our fearless leader.  She's a master at sketching live animals in places like zoos and local fairs.  Check out her blog for loads of great information on all things about keeping a sketchbook!

I had just purchased a uniquely shaped sketchbook at the Kon and I decided to take it along to the zoo.  I thought it's format would force me to think differently about what I was seeing and how I would place it on the page.  And it did!



Sometimes my sketchbook pages get messy.  You can't always stay neat when standing at a fence, in the sun, being jostled by crowds



Sometimes it was just so crowded I would sketch a shape and move on. 

Other times, I'd find myself with lots of elbow room and time to toss down some colors.



None of this sketchbook work is, for me, about creating beautiful pictures.  I want to observe, learn, and record the animals.

“Instructions for living a life. 
Pay attention. 
Be astonished. 
Tell about it.” 
― Mary Oliver





Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Sketchkon Sketches #10 Day of the Dead Work with Models


On the Day of the Dead, we had a whole evening of celebration, including time to work with the live models from Dr. Sketchy in L. A.

I have no practice, beyond one six-week class several years ago, drawing live models.  So, no surprise, I'm not very good at at!   I wonder how much better I would become if I could only find a class in my neck of the woods...