I have been painting like a demon the past few days and although I’m still doing some detail work, I think it’s ready to be posted. First off, the format is a bit ridiculous...or maybe it’s ridiculously cool. It’s certainly been a fun one to paint. The actual size in pixels is about 2200 wide by well over 51,000 long. (That works out to about 7.5 inches wide by over 170 inches tall)
I’m going to leave the purpose for doing this weird-sized illustration unclear, but if you want to you can think of it as a book cover that’s 9 inches wide and fourteen feet tall. Or maybe it’s a scroll. Or a fan-fold insert for a book... How’s that? Okay, I will fill things in a little more: I’m working on a publishing project that will go live this summer and involves kickstarter.com and possibly some partners. I’ll leave it at that for now because there is still a lot of planning to do.
The concept is one continuous illustration going from seagulls skimming the surface of a stormy sea to (~51,000 pixels later) the floor of a fairly deep and dark part of the ocean. In terms of ocean depth it’s about 6000 meters from surface to floor with some of the cool things you’ll find along the way.
Finally, I want to call attention to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (www.whoi.edu) which operates the DSV Alvin, and my favorite aquarium on the planet, Monterey Bay Aquarium (www.montereybayaquarium.org) which has captivated and inspired me for decades.
I also posted this for IllustrationFriday: Heights.
Here's a painting I'm working on, a really big complex thing with a bunch of figures--seaborn and orcas--engaged in underwater combat. Still a ways to go, but here's a detail and a much reduced version of where things stand at the moment. So far about twenty hours of work, mostly in Sketchbook Pro and Art Rage, but I've also incorporated sketches from Brushes and Sketchbook on my iPad. I'm about halfway done. So much detail in this one.
Took some pretty good shots of humpback whales today--went on a tour over the southeast end of Stellwagen Bank with my dad and my kids, Chloe and Christopher. I'll post more, but here are some examples--lots of breaching, whales jumping completely out of the water in some cases. Crazy stuff, but tough to shoot because you never knew where they were going to spring through the surface and into the air. Along the way Chloe and I saw a huge sea turtle swimming along about 10 miles southeast of Gloucester.
We also saw my favorite whale of all, Cajun--with her bud Pele--cruising along like they owned the place.
Click the pics for the full view:
At one point in the day we were positioned just right with the wun that every curtain of sea spray made a rainbow: