Friday, August 28, 2015

Cartoon Odyssey, Part Two

As I continue with my notes on Homer's Odyssey, I think the sketchnote premise is falling by the wayside and it's turning into more of a pure comic. Well, I have to go where the story takes me, and as Odysseus takes the stage to recount his adventures it's taking us to some really weird places.






Academic Animals

So yeah, I got a membership to the California Academy of Sciences, which is about half a mile from my home. That's definitely going to be the subject of a lot of future sketching!


 First off, we have Claude, the Academy's beloved albino alligator. It seems the two most common questions about him are "Is he real?" and "Does he eat the fish in his exhibit?" The answer to the second one is essentially "no," but when it comes to the alligator snapping turtles who share his space, I can now testify that the answer is "sometimes they do."

 

I really wanted to get back to the Academy while their whale exhibit was still in progress. So many cool skeletons!


The Steinhardt Aquarium in the basement is pretty awesome, even though the low light conditions make color work challenging. Their giant pacific octopus is rather shy, but the day octopus in the new "Color of Life" exhibit is considerably more extroverted.

SF Zoo: August Animals

In addition to the San Francisco Zoo, I just broke down and got a membership to the California Academy of Sciences. So going forward, you can expect lots of aquarium, skeleton, and taxidermy sketching in addition to the usual zoo menagerie! But let's clear out the zoo backlog first.


From the end of July, a close encounter with the ostriches, and a primate update for my lovely wife.


I seem to be on a bit of a reptiles, lizards, and amphibians kick. Here are a few from the new tropical aviary and the summer Nature Trail, plus the zoo's slowly growing Komodo dragon.


A few African critters - the shy kudu, impassive marabou stork, and young Boone the black rhino. I should mention that, if you feel strongly about the threatened status of Africa's elephants and rhinos, you should look into the Global March for Elephants and Rhinos; here's the Facebook page where they're organizing the San Francisco march, which will take place on Saturday, October 3.
  

And back at the zoo, I'm still working my way through the models in the recently installed Sculpture Learning Plaza. I need to go back soon - I hear they just added a coelacanth sculpture!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Constructive Thinking

I'm a bit behind in posting my recent sketchbook drawings. First off, here's a view of San Francisco's Conservatory of Flowers, from a location drawing trip with the amazing Gary Amaro.


Now a few from a recent excursion to Mission Creek with Laurie Wigham's SF Sketchers meetup group. While we were there, we checked out the Sketchbook Project's cool mobile library.

 

You can tell I have construction machines on my mind. Here's a pretty tractor I spotted on the street near Japantown.


And finally, here's the WWII submarine Pampanito, moored near Fisherman's Wharf. Speaking of big machines...


Saturday, August 8, 2015

Sketchnote Odyssey, Part One

I'm currently reading Homer's Odyssey for the first time, and just for fun, I'm documenting it as I go along in a kind of cartoon semi-sketchnote form. So far I've been doing a chapter a day, and I'll post them here in batches.

Monday, July 20, 2015

More Summer at the SF Zoo

Whenever the deadline clouds clear for a day or two, I tend to run off to the San Francisco Zoo. My membership expires at the end of this month, so I have to get as much mileage out of it as I can!


I don't think I've ever drawn the zebras before. With one exception, they were posing very cooperatively.


It's always nice to pay a visit to the African Aviary, especially when there's a fledgling ibis to admire.


By special request, here are the lovely siamangs!


The summer nature trail is in full swing, and I pestered the young volunteers with lots and lots of questions.


Next, back to the Sculpture Learning Plaza! They're still adding new models, but we're still waiting on the coelacanth. I'll draw them all eventually...


This one's from the recent grand opening of the remodeled Tropical Rainforest and Aviary.
 

A view into the aviary from the southern entrance, with callouts in the direction of various critters. I'll have to get back there and do a bunch of individual studies.



And at last, I had a perfect opportunity to draw the baby howler monkey.