Promarker Pro

Promarkers

There is a brand of markers that I am particularly fond of using. You may be thinking of Sharpie markers from my following post called Using Sharpie but you are mistaken. Don’t get me wrong. Sharpie markers are bold and effective for creating graphic images, but there is another kind of marker that achieves this as well: Promarkers!

I absolutely love Promarkers! I am so glad I have these within my desk drawers. The smoothness of the colours are perfect for colouring and the wide range of shades is useful for drawing realistic shades. Though you can get numerous shades with one marker, using more than one marker because you can blend the ink beautifully.

I first tried Promarkers on my 14th birthday when I received three packs of them. Now, I cannot stop buying these markers. The more I use them, the more I discover what they can do with them in my artwork. I use them for fine details, in hair for example, or for just scribbling, little flowers for example.

I have lost count of how many Promarkers I have! I know for a fact that I have at least over 100 but I don’t have a specific number to share. Yes, I am a bit in love with this product. Yes, I use them for many many projects… and Yes, it is difficult to resist buying them whenever I go to an art store.

a drawing for a school agenda contest
made with ProMarkers

Anime and Manga: there is a difference

egg

Many of my close friends and family members associate me as a specific type of food: an egg. Although I would have preferred being associated with a Hershey’s Kiss or even a strawberry, they still call me an egg.

Why an egg?
Is it because I am boring on the outside and cool and bright on the inside? I eat a lot of eggs?

Even though the answers to these questions should be a yes, they are not the reason. It is because I have a slight obsession with Asian culture. I’m “white” on the outside and “asian” on the inside and that’s where the egg comes in.

This obsession started in middle school, when I received my first packs of ProMarkers and two books about drawing manga and making anime. While I started sketching out my own characters and achieving a graphic look, I also began watching many anime shows some of my friends recommended, like Death Note, Lucky Star, DearS, and many others. My three sisters took notice of this and, besides teasing me, think that manga and anime are synonyms, and practically the same thing. This has always bothered me, being the egg that I am, because there is in fact distinct differences between the two.

Death Note Anime

Death Note Manga

Manga is Japanese for comic, and anime is Japanese for animation. Often, manga and anime are so closely related that they will have the same series in both versions, like the series Death Note. When you study the both together more closely, the are differences in their art quality, the quantity, and the styles between them.

A normal animation runs for about 24 frames a second, making an anime quite demanding in art quantity. Therefore, an anime usually has about several million images. Obviously a manga has fewer images and are drawn in panels. As well, more space is used for the speech bubbles for the words in the story. So, manga uses much less space and pages than an anime and are usually drawn in black and white from top to bottom, right to left, whereas animes are done in colour.

Also, having a background is a crucial feature, especially in animes, to emphasize a place of action, the movements a character makes, and even to reflect a character’s thoughts. On the other hand, manga can get away with no background, following the motto “less is in fact more.” Not every panel requires a background, so more emphasis can be placed on the characters.

From these points, there are differences between anime and manga, strictly on the artistic content of each. Although they are both Japanese and influence each other heavily, they can never be the same concept. Each one has unique qualities, often resulting in people preferring one over the other. For example, I do enjoy the action portrayed in anime but am also interested in the simple beauty manga has to offer.

I am glad that I have this obsession with Asian culture because it creates a unique aspect of myself I can share with other people with similar interests. My sisters should read this so they can understand that anime and manga are not the same thing the next time they decide to tease me about my “egg” personality.

FlashMob

It seems to me that a very popular form of performance art has emerged as flash mobs.

Flash Mobs are groups of people who assemble suddenly in a public place to perform an act for a brief period of time, then disperse. Usually, the purposes of these mobs are for entertainment, satire, and artistic expression, from mobs doing dances, freeze mobs, pillow fights, etc.

The first flash mob ever was created in Manhattan in 2003, at Macy’s department store, with more than 130 people gathered around an expensive rug.

I’ve contemplated how managing a flash mob is actually possible, but really, it is not that difficult. With social media, it is an effective tool to connect with many many people for a single cause. Think of the amount of participation you could get with adding all your facebook friends in this kind of event. Usually what is included in these invites is the specific task wanted to be achieved and the meeting place and time.

flash mob

Scott Pilgrim

Are you looking for a comic so whimsical and crazy you’ll want to read over and over? In the mood for some action, romance, humor, music, and pure awesomeness? If yes, then I recommend reading the Scott Pilgrim comic books.

Scott Pilgrim is a series of six graphic novels by Canadian Bryan Lee O’Malley about 23-year-old Canadian Scott Pilgrim, a slacker who lives in Toronto. He plays bass guitar in the band Sex Bob-omb and falls in love with American Ramona Flowers. However, she does come with her seven evil exes, whom Scott must defeat in order to date her peacefully.

Bryan Lee O’Malley’s epic tribute to video games, relationships, music, heartbreak, and falling in love blew the doors wide open on what could be done with narratives and comics on the whole. When I received the books for Christmas, I didn’t really know what to expect, except some epic action. As the I began reading, I found it extremely funny. The humor is current and witty, which helps progress character and plot development. Here is an example:

I quickly devoured the volumes and started recommending it to my friends because I thought it was that awesome and they agreed as well. The story will draw you in and as the series progresses, Scott gets easier to root for, although he seems to be very apathetic and lazy at first. Each character plays a part in the madness, with Wallace, Knives, the seven exes, Ramona, the Sex Bob-omb band members, etc.

Scott Pilgrim is an intriguing series, making anyone unable to put the books down. Get ready for an adventure like no other, with Scott Pilgrim.

Obsession or Passion

I have been lately thinking of weird things. For some reason, I desperately want to make a series of lampshades and paint fish, especially koi. Having experiences like this before, I wasn’t surprised at all.

Image

However, I have been questioning myself as to why these occurrences are happening. This lead me to this question: Are these things obsessions or just things I like or passionate about?

Obsession: (noun) 1. the domination of one’s thoughts or feelings by a persistent idea, image, desire, etc. 2. the idea, image, desire, feeling, etc., itself.

Certainly, in this case, me persisting myself to make lampshades can seem like obsessive behavior. It reminds me of the Facebook phenomenon; people continuously their notifications and messages starting as soon as they wake up. Honestly, we all get a bit obsessive over something or other, but can that also be passionate behavior?

Passion: (noun) 1. a state or outburst of strong emotion. 2. an intense desire or enthusiasm for something.

By definition alone, obsession and passion seem very similar. However, I do feel that when you are passionate, you have a more emotional attachment to whatever you’re passionate about. I agree that wanting to make lampshades is strange and obsessive, but trying to make something different from everyone else is where I become passionate. Another example is Vincent Van Gogh’s numerous self portraits; was he obsessive or passionate? (he was a little narcissistic but that’s besides the point.) Really, we are all obsessive and passionate, but knowing where we stand and not getting too obsessive and passionate, we help us to not become crazy.

Go Environmental

We are in an Environmental Movement. The concept of global warming is constantly sneaking in our minds, warnings of certain animal’s extinction rings through our ears, and reducing, reusing, and recycling are a normality. No matter what, our environment will constantly be a major part of our lives. It affects our moods, habits, lifestyles, where we want to live and how we want to live. It recent years, designers, known as environmental designers, have been putting forth environmentally friendly options for certain products and services. For example, you can buy biodegradable cups, plates, etc and electric your home with renewable energy.

Environmental design focuses on the design of expressive and humane interior and architectural spaces. It is the process of addressing the surrounding environmental parameters when devising plans, programs, policies, buildings, or products. They understand how to manage storm water, store carbon, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, provide habitat for fish and wildlife, and can simply enhance public spaces to improve property values and quality of life. Environmental design can also refer to applied arts and sciences, including architecture, geography, urban planning, and interior design, when creating a human-designed environment.

With environmental designers, a hope for becoming more aware of our environment is possible. New forms of technology are being discovered and designed that can truly benefit people’s lifestyles into more environmentally friendly ones.

Adobe Illustrator

This year, I have been excitedly using a software application made especially for drawing on the computer called Adobe Illustrator. I’m sure you have heard about its relative Adobe Photoshop and assume that Illustrator is very similar. In fact, this assumption is a false testament¬†of Illustrator’s true power and its secret weapon Photoshop does not acquire.¬†While Adobe Photoshop works using pixels, Illustrator takes a different direction.

Illustrator gives designers a creative freedom, so they can focus on what they want to create rather than how to do it. The secret weapon on how they can achieve this? Vector graphics- a way to draw objects using points, lines, curves, and shapes.

This software has altered the face of graphic design, advertising, and the media forever. It is hard to get through a day without seeing the influence of Illustrator.

Here are some examples of some work I have done using Illustrator.

Using Sharpie

One of my favourite tools I like to use for personal projects would have to be a black marker. I started using them in grade eight when I received a pack of different width markers for my birthday along with three packs of Letraset markers. Making bold lines and created contrast and character to my drawings always appealed to me. Lately, though, I have been particularly fond of using Sharpiesm which have a bolder presence in the artwork and can be applied many surfaces, whether it be walls, paper, three Dimensional structures.

Here are some examples of the work I have been doing lately: