My Other Blogs

I’m a bit of a maniac when it comes to having too many interests. Anyone that knows me can attest to my eagerness to try things and get involved with the things I really like.

Two things I really like, like enough to make new blogs about:

Adventure Touring and Photography.

Adventuring.Bike is my cycling-centric blog with write-ups and photos about my out-of-town adventures, gear, and scenery along the way. I don’t post every week, but rather after I’ve done an interesting ride that I want to share. Should I do gear reviews?

TQ.Photos is my dedicated photography blog where I post my non-cycling or non-artistic photos. This can include some photos from other interests but will usually be about how I got certain photos, the gear I like, or what I am trying to learn. Any feedback on how to improve my photography is greatly appreciated.

BikeCraft 2018 Recap

Another BikeCraft in the bag! Thank you everyone that stopped by my table for a chat, bought some coloring books or prints. It’s been really great to get feedback from so many people in and out of the bicycling community. It really makes me want to hit up other shows and keep producing more work.

Having the event at TaborSpace was far more condusive to a craft show than last year’s show at Bike Farm which isn’t really an event venue at all. There was more foot traffic this year despite weather, hill climb, and being in the basement.

Thanks to the organizors at Microcosm for putting it all together, making sure there was food on-site, and that we vendors had plenty of space.

I had set up a 6-foot table and a 4-foot table to showcase my 3 coloring books and a bunch of prints.

My Bikecraft 2018 table set up. Pretty simple, but I feel it could have been better.

I was quite proud of the two new prints that debued at BikeCraft. My largest watercolor works to date. The Tortoise Castle and Squirrel on the Extra Tall Bike. They were both drawn in 2012, but only painted in the last month. I sold a few prints, but wonder if the size makes it prohibative to mail or transport by bike.

Some of the usual vendors were there like Shawn Granton of the Urban Adventure League:

But it was nice to see some hat vendors again, last year there were none! So Double Darn was there with her wares. I even bought one of her rad hats!

I like my new Double Darn Hat

Overall, it was an OK show. I didn’t walk away with a bunch of stuff again but I will be going to Black Star Bags in a few weeks for a sweet custom backpack. I’ll share it as soon as I have it!

Will I go back next year? Well, to be honest, the numbers don’t work out. I’ve lost money the last two years as I had to pay for the table space, pay for prints, and get a new Square reader. So at this point, I’ll focus on making more content that isn’t necessarily bike-themed and try to get out to more shows to expand my audience beyond local Portland cyclists.

What do you think? Where you at BikeCraft? Do you have any other shows I should consider for my illustrations?
-Tomas

SW Roadtrip 2018

During my weeklong roadtrip with @tweetsandchirps, I kept a sketchbook and watercolor travel journal of our experiences and the wildlife we spotted.

My full supplies list:

I had considerably more art supplies with me for experimentation, but this list is what I ended up using in the travel journal.

It’s a project I’ve wanted to do for some time on all our travels through the years but never found myself with enough downtime and discipline to see it through during the trip and when we got home.

Throughout the trip, I would post some progress shots on my Instagram, but didn’t share everything until the very end on my portfolio page.

Process: Each day I would pick something new or interesting that I photographed or spotted on our trip. Sometimes I could draw it on the spot, other times I had to make some notes, do a quick sketch, take a photo, then finish in camp that night. There are quite a few pages that I had to finish when we returned home and painted from various references, but they still represented something I saw or experienced.

The drawing would be very lightly sketched out in blue pencil to give me a framework, then it varied from inking with the multi-liner then painting or sometimes skipping the inking entirely and just being painted over the blue lines. I like both aesthetics and may end up bouncing between the two in future travel journals.

One thing I really enjoyed about the whole experience of filling the journal was watching the pages warp just ever so slightly and make the journal a bit thicker, fluffier.

Overall I am extremely pleased with the results. I had an idea, got to experience Joshua Tree National Park, the Salton Sea, and Death Valley in a unique camper van named Simba along with my amazing partner, Audrey.

I posted all of the travel journal pages over on my portfolio page.

All photos in my Flickr Gallery. SW Road Trip 2018

What did I learn on this trip?

  • I need very little to keep a detailed travel journal
  • Sleeping in a van isn’t as difficult as I was lead to believe
  • Southern California is gorgeous in a way I can’t express
  • Drawing faster and accepting faults is part of the process and style

Inktober 2018

I just completed 31 days of Jake Parker’s Inktober Challenge by drawing 30+ different internet-famous dogs. Mostly Boston Terriers and Frenchies.

What is Inktober?

In short, the rules are as follows:

  1. Make a drawing in ink (you can do a pencil under-drawing if you want).
  2. Post it (Instagram, Twitter, other social media)
  3. Hashtag it with #inktober and #inktober2018
  4. Repeat

I completed the challenge in 2017 by drawing more animals on bikes  and was eager to do it again in 2018.

My Theme

Well, up until September 30, I wasn’t sure if I was going to follow the Inktober prompts that Jake provides or if I was going to stick with a theme of my own deciding. Later that night I was perusing famous internet dogs on Instagram and really enjoying the drawings I was doing of dogs using the iPad. So, internet dogs was going to be my theme.

Materials

  • 40# Hammermill paper
  • Pentel Brush Pen
  • Niji waterbrushes with diluted black and sepia inks
  • Black bottled Ink
  • Sepia bottled Ink

The only tools I used for all of Inktober 2018

What did I learn?

Drawing dogs in a style that is realistic or even a little cartoony can be a challenge. Capturing the essence or characteristic look of a dog can be just as subtle as trying to render the portrait of a person. The major difference here is that I wasn’t trying to appease any particular person other than myself which made this very fun and relaxing. I really enjoyed putting all the work on my wall as it progressed and having this final collage. It may have only been a single drawing a day, but having it on the wall really put it into perspective that daily drawings can really add up to a full body of work.

me drawing a dog, wall covered with dog drawings
Audrey caught me in the act of drawing for inktober

Reception

I made sure to mention which dog I had drawn by tagging the post with the owner’s instagram or twitter handle. Several of the owner’s even requested to purchase or asked me to draw their dogs. I didn’t plan on selling these portraits, so I let them pay what they wanted then I shipped their purchases after Inktober finished.

This lead me to add Custom Pet Portraits as an option in my online shop at Flying Snail Creations and on Etsy. So, contact me if you want a custom pet portrait drawn in ink.

Update 20181124: Due to this project being posted on Instagram, I was commissioned to draw the many faces of a frenchie named Beth.

Wrap Up

I loved doing another Inktober challenge, the pressure, the feedback, and the confidence build-up. This was well worth the dedication to producing something every single day and sharing it with the world without worry of financial gain nor loss. Definitely doing this again next year!

Go to my portfolio page to see all my Dogs of Inktober 2018.

Cheers!

 

Bike Parade 3 Color Party

My latest book, Bike Parade Vol 3, will finally be available for purchase at Books with Pictures on Division.

Join me this Saturday, December 2 at Noon to color some pages and pick up your own copy for the kids, yourself, or as a holiday gift.

If you can’t make it then you’ll find me at BikeCraft on December 15-17. I’ll have all three of my coloring books for sale along with original prints.