2007 Entrance Portfolio

red-eyed tree frog (adjusted) Eight items from my 2007 entrance portfolio for Interior Design.

I love the vibrant colours of this tree frog, and the contrast between the smooth watercolours and the texture of the block-printing that forms the background and main lines. I like carving linocuts better than I like drawings, since if I get the block right I can experiment with different colours and papers for little extra work…especially with water-based ink. This print is oil-based ink, thanks to the watercolours, which was very messy to work with. It turns out that baby oil is a better clean-up liquid for it than turpentine.

national gallery garden view (adjusted)This charcoal drawing shows a view through multiple spaces, and is based on my photograph of a garden in the National Gallery. At the time I had no training in perspective drawing, and no experience with charcoal, so you can imagine how much trial and error went into it. I began by drawing an outline of the scene, without tracing the photo, and used a light table to do the toned version on a separate sheet, because I knew it would take me more than one try to get it right.

kodama finds acorn (adjusted)Algonquin required that I include a piece that showed a journey with multiple points of interest along the way. Since I’ve read Scott McCloud, that immediately suggested it be a comic. The characters are kodamas, the Japanese tree spirits featured in Mononoke Hime. It was done in pencil crayon.

Eye with swirlsI experimented with Chinese ink drawing, and this eye with swirls emerged from my doodling.

Sleeping Woman (nude study)A conté figure study. I have always had trouble drawing people to my satisfaction, but I think this came out well, and I enjoy the smudgy quality of conté on textured paper. The curves of her shoulder and hip remind me of mountains.

Sauce dish and teapotThe shape of this bowl at a Toronto Chinese restaurant was too elegant to not photograph.

Branch on red brickI wanted this composition to have an Asian feel, and I liked the contrast of the branch against the red brick. The structure is actually part of a parking garage on Percy St. on my way to tai chi class.

Snowy tree on cliffEvery winter the cliff in our backyard looks spectacular, and this day was even better than usual.