Thursday, December 29, 2005

The Thomas Project, Day 1

At this point in time, my life is consumed with the object of Anthony's admiration: Thomas the Tank Engine. I can't explain it. He just loves that thing.

So you can only imagine what the house looked like during Christmas. My God, I think we even got Thomas toilet paper. And being that I am off this week, we took a trip to the Thomas Station store in the Brea Mall. Unless you are really desperate for anything Thomas, I wouldn't recommend this place--overpriced and small selection. The only good thing about going there was eating lunch at The Hat afterwards.

At any rate, I always wanted to paint something on my kid's bedroom walls. Sure, the subject matter may only interest them for a short time, but it'll keep them happy--and keep me busy. So I decided to paint Thomas the Tank Engine on one of Anthony's walls.

For starters, I had to choose what exactly I wanted to paint. So I went with the logo from this box (upper left), which is surrounded by the tools of the trade: a pencil, an eraser, a yardstick, an Itoya Finepoint pen, and laser level. I'm old-school save for the laser level.

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From there, I had to draw a straight line for the text, which was all done initially freehand with a pencil.

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Then I darkened the letters with the Itoya pen, and began drawing Thomas.

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That blue thing you see me holding is actually a piece of track from Anthony's Thomas set. When in a complete circle, it measured 16"--just 2" short of what I needed. Not an issue; I simply split the difference and went with it. I then added more detail.

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An improperly burned CD provided the perfect template for Thomas' eyes and front windows.

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Once the sketch was complete, I began to apply a coat of Gesso around the letters as that area will be white, and only one coat of white paint may not cover.

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And that's about where I'm at right now. I have to wait for the Gesso to dry before I begin filling in the cloud area with white paint.

This is the kind of stuff I can really dig my teeth into--freehand, split-the-difference kind of creativity. When it comes to using Adobe Illustrator, forget it. I mean, I'm kind of glad I dropped out of Platt College to become a writer, but I still miss illustrating and drawing.

For this, and my ability to play music by ear, Ann lovingly calls me "one of those people." She may not be able to draw freehand (CAD and drafting is another story with her), but she can read sheet music.

I don't need to ;) And check back later for updates on this project!

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