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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

iDraw: Small Woodland Abstract

This was done on my iPod Touch in iDoodle 2 because, unlike Brushes, it allowed me to change the background without changing the drawing. Thus I could pick and choose how I wanted to draw on top of my photo, and then take the photo away altogether. Thanks to the iDoodle folks for this great feature! Continuing the iPod Drawing Ap review portion of my recent nlogs, what was frustrating was how many steps it took to use the eyedropper and then go back to drawing. It would also be good if the line size and opacity sliders were in the same dialog box. But those are just wishes for future interface improvements - in the here and now, it did what I needed it to do.

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Monday, September 29, 2008

It's Not Easy Painting Green!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Tree Hugger

Saturday, September 27, 2008

A Tangle of Trees

'A Tangle of Trees' acrylic paint self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay. (Click to view same image larger.) And who's in those trees with me...? Actually, if you think I seem more interested in the woods than the self-portrait these days, you're right!

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Early Morning at Sausal Creek

'Early Morning at Sausal Creek' acrylic paint self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay. (Click to view same image larger.) Ha! I thought this seemed familiar while I was doing it - it seems I picked the same photo to work from as on June 26th, even though I have a pretty large collection of images of me in these woods to choose from!

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

iDraw: I Stood in the Woods...

'iDraw: I Stood in the Woods...' digital iPod Touch self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay. (Click to view same image larger.) I stood in the woods at Sausal Creek, and drew on my iPod with the Brushes application. I've been very keen on making images with 'real' paint lately, but given my schedule, it's not always realistic. Especially on days when I train in Aikido, I will sometimes need to use methods that require less cleanup. Anyway, I continue to be thrilled to be able to draw digitally, anytime, anywhere. And Brushes is definitely my favorite application so far for doing so.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Another Funny Little Painting

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My Moue

Monday, September 22, 2008

First Blush of Morning

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Yellow Turban

'The Yellow Turban' acrylic paint self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay. (Click to view same image larger.) After almost two weeks of making images digitally, it's fun to be behind a brush again - and see how working in one media influences the way I work in anther. In this case the easy access on the iPod Touch to so much color that doesn't bleed and doesn't get muddy, is inspiring me to work in a different way with actual paint. In the year and a half of this project, I've made color images in many ways - watercolors, magic markers, cut paper, crayons, digitally, and with beet juice, to name a few. But actually the last few days are the first time I've used acrylics since the portrait project began, which is interesting since they were my primary media prior to this. In any event, I'm enjoying re-engaging with an old friend.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008

Thick Paint

Real Paint!

How strange... you have to mix colors and wait for paint to dry before changing it...

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

iDraw: Hard Day at Work

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

iDraw: ColorTilt!

Put your mouse over the image to see it evolve, move your mouse off the image to have it stop at any frame.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

iDraw: Wood Elf at Sausal Creek

Monday, September 15, 2008

iDraw: Green Turban

I drew this with ColorTilt, a drawing program in which the color you're drawing with changes at the slightest movement/angle change of the iPod/iPhone. I had pretty much dismissed it as pretty to look at but impossible to draw with - can't control what color you have, can't get back a color you had before, etc. And yet... managed to get this quite satisfyingly painterly piece made this morning. It did seem that related colors clustered together - I'd like to be able to set it, ie reds when you tilt to the right and blues when you tilt to the left, darker when you tilt up, lighter when you tilt down, etc. Other than that it has line size and opacity sliders, and you can temporarilly freeze a color you're using. I would like to see a save function so I don't have to rely on taking screen shots.

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

iDraw: Sketch 'N Twist

One aspect of using the video camera in my laptop to draw from is that since it's down on my lap, I'm looking up at my face from below, an unusual view. Here I decided to emphasize that by distorting the drawing I made in Sketches with PhotoTwist.

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

iDraw: Evolving Scribble

Put your mouse over the image to see it evolve, move your mouse off the image to have it stop at any frame.

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Teapot Slideshow

I just figured out how to make a slide show and couldn't resist posting it, even though the tea kettle is not today's self-portrait. Put your cursor over the image to see the different stages of the drawing. Move your cursor away to have it stop at any frame. Enjoy!

Friday, September 12, 2008

iDraw: Mouseover Trick

These were both done very quickly this morning on my iPod Touch using Scribbles, which has the advantages of being free and having a very simple, straightforward interface. It has three lines sizes and something like 12 colors and the background color is white - shake to clear image and - that's it! No erase or undo or opacity or cursor offset or shapes or clip art or different line qualities or cloning or distorting or any other high falutin' thing - just the basics. (Put your mouse over the picture to see the second one)

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

iDraw:Double-Tech at the Crack of Dawn

Somehow it took until this morning to figure out that if I wanted a quick photo of myself to work from, I didn't need to take a digital photo and then upload it to the computer - I could use the darn video camera in the computer! In fact I can use the live video feed on the computer as a mirror. So this was drawn on the iPod Touch (Squiggles again, I'll try something new tomorrow) while looking at myself in 'photobooth' on my macbook . It was about 5 am so the video reproduction of my face in low light was kind of blue/purple. That's my excuse anyway, and i'm sticking to it!

On the Squiggles front, one thing I've been finding frustrating with Squiggles is that there;s no eyedropper tool. There's a full color-picker, which is great, but there's no way to get the exact same color as you picked and used somewhere else in the drawing. Well, I take that back - there is a cloning tool, so if you have a large swath of a color somewhere, you can sort of use cloning to draw with that color again but it's very awkward, and really not the intended use of that tool.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

iDraw: Cartoon Carrot Top

'iDraw: Cartoon Carrot Top' digital iPod Touch self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay usig Squiggles Application. (Click to view same image larger.) Another drawing on my iPod Touch with my finger and the Squiggles application. It turns out that drawing with the star shape is an OK way to make hair.

I think Squiggles is one of only two of these programs that allow you to set an offset of the cursor from your finger, and the only one that allows you to do this with color (No. 2 is the other one). Setting an offset is great because you can draw more precisely, especially when you want to do something like continue an existing line. It also lets you draw all the way to the edge more easily, as you can see here I was able to draw the background to all the edges without a problem. However (there's always a however!) to get to each edge, you have to change the offset angle, and changing the offset means going through two layers of dialog boxes. So first request would be to make this feature more accessible. Second, it would be really great of there were a feature (which you could opt to turn on or off) that sensed when you were approaching the edge of the screen and made an adjustment in the angle of the offset. I don't have a great idea off the top of my head about the interface for this, but I think it's something worth thinking about.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2008

iDraw: Frowning with Squiggles

'iDraw: Frowning with Squiggles' digital iPod Touch self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay in which she reviews ap store drawing applications Squiggles and Brushes. (Click to view same image larger.) This was drawn with Squiggles on my iPod Touch. It has many more features than Sketches, including different line soft/fuzziness, transparency, cursor offset from finger, and full color selection. However, I still found it less 'natural' than Brushes. One thing I definitely don't like is that instead of separate sliders for line size and line quality, there are specific tools that have a fuzziness and a size. So you can't get a thinner or thicker line of the same type. Nevertheless, I plan to work with it more tomorrow.

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Monday, September 8, 2008

iDraw: Tousled Hair of Early Morning - First Day of School in New Location

'iDraw: Tousled Hair of Early Morning - First Day of School in New Location' digital iPod Touch self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay,  in which she reviews iPod touch.iphone drawing aps. (Click to view same image larger.) This was done entirely in Sketches. It works well as long as I think only of flat lines in limited colors - sort of like a printmaking process.

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Sunday, September 7, 2008

iDraw: Happy Sketch from Tennessee Valley

This was done entirely in Sketches, which works nicely as long as I think of it as sort of hard lead colored pencils - nice for making individual lines, not so good for coloring in areas. Like all of the iPod Touch drawing programs, it's also very hard to draw close to the edges- a 'page' that was larger than the screen and could be scrolled would be very welcome. The only program I've used that has that is No. 2, which doesn't have color.

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Saturday, September 6, 2008

iDraw: Sketches and Brushes

I meant to draw entirely with Sketches today, but I got frustrated by the limited colors, single line type with hard edges, and lack of opacity control. So I finished the face in Brushes, leaving everything else as it was from Sketches. Strangely, it looks like the blue background gained an odd texture during the import to Brushes from the saved photos.

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Friday, September 5, 2008

iDraw: Quick Brush on the Way to Bed...

I was literally falling asleep while I did this - at one point I just tilted over on the couch. So it did not get the attention of the previous two, and I'm posting two versions, as they each have different problems. I definitely prefer the mouth, rough as it is, on the earlier version. Like the previous two, it was done with Brushes on my iPod Touch. However, this time I used the second of the three line types, and a white instead of a black background. Continuing my review of the program, although I really enjoy drawing with Brushes, I'm not liking the images as much when they're uploaded to Photoshop, nor how they print. I'm not sure if the issue is just resolution or something else, but they are more pixelated than I would prefer.

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Thursday, September 4, 2008

iDraw: Not Alfred E. Newman

'iDraw: Not Alfred E. Newman' digital iPod Touch self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay. (Click to view same image larger.) Like yesterday's portrait, this was done in Brushes on my iPod Touch. There are three different 'brushes' provided. Yesterday I used only the third brush, today only the first. Ir was hard to see the difference on the iPod Touch screen, it's clearer here in the larger size. I'd say brush number three was more like pastels, brush number one more like magic markers.

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Wednesday, September 3, 2008

iDraw: Let the Finger Painting Begin!

'Let the Finger Painting Begin!' digital iPod Touch self-portrait by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay. (Click to view same image larger.) I wasn't planning on starting this series until tomorrow, but my fingers got ahead of me. As I'm both an exhibiting artist and a professional geek, it gives me great pleasure to be able to have a large selection from my portfolio and an unending sketchpad in my pocket, both as part of my iPod Touch. I've been fooling around with the different drawing programs for the iPod Touch since they started to become available about 6 weeks ago, but now it's my plan to really see what can be done by creating all my portraits for the next week and a half to two weeks on the Touch.

This was done with Brushes, a relatively recent release which is currently my favorite. The interface is simple and clear, it has an excellent color picker and eyedropper, seemingly infinite undo and redos, three different line types (I'm looking forward to more in a future upgrade!), zoom in for detail and sliders for line size and opacity. It does not have shapes or clip art, which I don't need. The other features I would most like to see are line size slider in same dialog as color and opacity; higher resolution image; larger 'piece of paper', an implementation of cursor offset, don't need to go back to gallery to get new piece of paper, and change background color without erasing drawing.

This isn't the first portrait I've done drawing with my finger on the touchscreen of the iPod touch. I did this one using No. 2, and then printed it on watercolor paper and painted on it. I also did two silly ones, this one using Wooly Willy and this one using Squiggles. So far, the programs I have include:

Brushes
ColorTilt
iDoodle2
No. 2
PhotoTwist
Scribble
Sketches
Squiggles
Wooly Willy

I'll be reporting on the various programs' pros and cons as I work with them in the next couple weeks. Developers and users - let me know if there are other applications that you think I should look into (add comments to any of these blog entries to let me know).

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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

With My Right Foot

I always like to try something new on my birthday - this time drawing with my foot (though I realized I was sometimes keeping my foot pretty still and simply moving the paper - with my hands!)

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Monday, September 1, 2008

My Inner Librarian was Frazzled

'My Inner Librarian was Frazzled' pen and watercolor self-portrait drawn with her eyes closed and using both hands similtaneously by San Francisco Bay Area artist Julia Kay, and in which her hair is pushed up and her glasses are askew. (Click to view same image larger.) I was frazzled because although Rawlston has been better about his music, he doesn't seem to have the general idea: don't make so much noise partying at 3 AM that you wake your neighbors. And last night he was at it again. *sigh*. We'll keep trying to work with him...

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