Tuesday, June 30, 2009

PaperMag write up!

"The very talented illustrator Joshua David McKenney has started a Facebook frenzy with his amazing series of watercolor portraits of friends like David Favale, Maya Judd, Nicolas Alexander, Antonia Thompson, Kwesi Blair, Mark Langrish, George Sotelo, Eric Spear and yours truly. Having a McKenney watercolor as your Facebook profile pic is the new badge of cool. "I was bored on the bus to Boston and I decided to do a doodle of my friend," McKenney tells me. "I did a few more friends. Pretty soon there was drama breaking out amongst my friends as to who I had drawn first. Well, I also got dozens of emails from people I don't know asking for drawings of them and their pets. It's a fun project. Lets see where it goes." Tomorrow, Mark Langish is hosting an opening of McKenney's watercolors at his loft, but your best bet to get your portrait done is to befriend Joshua on Facebook and join his fan club."
By Peter Davis


Color Me a McKenney


Thursday, June 25, 2009

SVA 3D design class (week 3)

For the next few weeks we will be working on making our own chess set!!! I'm very excited about this project!
My chessboard's theme will be taken from the ballet Swan Lake which tells the story of Odette, a princess turned into a swan by an evil sorcerer's curse.
This beautiful story is where my mind immediately went when I thought about creating my own chessboard. It seems to fit so perfectly with the players in the game and hopefully will look like a dance as it is played out.

For the full story please follow this link:

Black Pieces

White Pieces

The Chess Board (The Lake)

The Players:

The King

The king is the most important piece, but is one of the weakest. The king can only move one square in any direction - up, down, to the sides, and diagonally.

The Queen

The queen is the most powerful piece. If moved she can move in any one straight direction - forward, backward, sideways, or diagonally - as far as possible as long as she does not move through any of her own pieces. And, like with all pieces, if the queen captures an opponent's piece her move is over.

The Rook

The rook may move as far as it wants, but only forward, backward, and to the sides. The rooks are particularly powerful pieces when they are protecting each other and working together!

The Bishop

The bishop may move as far as it wants, but only diagonally. Each bishop starts on one color (light or dark) and must always stay on that color. Bishops work well together because they cover up each other’s weaknesses.

The Knight

Knights move in a very different way from the other pieces – going two squares in one direction, and then one more move at a 90 degree angle, just like the shape of an “L”. Knights are also the only pieces that can move over other pieces.

The Pawn

Pawns are unusual because they move and capture in different ways: they move forward, but capture diagonally. Pawns can only move forward one square at a time, except for their very first move where they can move forward two squares. Pawns can only capture one square diagonally in front of them. They can never move or capture backwards. If there is another piece directly in front of a pawn he cannot move past or capture that piece.

So stay tuned! This will be quite a project! I have a lot of sculptures and molds to make!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

SVA 3D design class (week 2)

Thank you to everyone who voted last week! The ear whisper girl got the most votes by far so I DID end up going with her.


First I made a skeleton out of wire and foil to support the figure. If you look behind the glass head you'll see my first sculpture that I spent a LOT of time on. It didn't fit in the head in the end so this was my second figure.

all finished.

I gold leafed the inside of the head so you could only see the figure from the sides and back. The whole idea is that the girl is telling a "secret."

This is the mold we made from the sculpture. The original sculpy figure is much more fragile and I wanted her to be white so we cast her in durable plastic.

We filled the mold with the mixture of these two chemicals. Once mixed they go from a clear liquid to solid opaque plastic in about 4-5 minutes. It's amazing to watch.

Unfortunately we had air bubbles in her breasteses...we had to make a second cast.

With our second cast we made a very elaborate base for her to stand on (the inside of a Tupperware container)

And I coated it with gold leaf to make it look fancy.

pop it in place and TA-DA finished!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

SVA 3D design class (week 1)

I'm taking a class at The School Of Visual Arts here in New York this summer. It's a 3D illustration and design class and I think its going to be really good.

Our first assignment is to create an environment within this head that describes "What drives us to create as artists?" Tomorrow we have to come in with 5-6 sketches of ideas....My "drive" has always been the creation of fantasy or specifically the creation of the fantasy of glamor so these are my ideas:

I had to do a fantasy mermaid head because I've always loved mermaids and I have drawn them all day long for over 25 years. Also the head looks sort of like a fish bowl so how could I resist?

This is my Barbarella helmet head. In my opinion the opening scene to this movie is one of the most hypnotic pieces of cinematography ever. An astronaut "floats" onto the screen and does a a slow burlesque strip show to some groovy music in a shag carpeted space ship. The singing begins when Barbarella's beautiful face is relieved in a slow tease of silver dropping out of her helmet...magical!
(This is secretly my favorite idea but I don't know how applicable it is to the assignment. I just really want to do it.)

I thought it would be cute to have a girl whispering in my ear from the inside. I also made it so you could only see her from the back so its more of a "secret."

This is probably the closest thing to what is really going on inside my head most of the time....pretty girl surrounded by flowers. If you are at all familiar with my work you will know that I don't stray far from this formula.

Burlesque women on beaded ropes.

Cut paper diorama of theater performance.

So yeah...those are them. Please tell me which you think are the best ideas and check in again next week for the outcome.