Monday, October 02, 2006

Lessons Learned...And Re-Learned

As I've been rapidly slouching towards middle age, in addition to getting grayer (after a longer-than usual period of not shaving, I discovered the other day that there's gray in my beard), I'm becoming increasingly forgetful.
Of course while that is troublesome, the more irritating problem is my willful forgetfulness, those moments when I find myself doing something that I know I shouldn't be doing, as it's something about which I learned my lesson years ago, and the end result of which is that I end up learning my lesson again.
Then again, if I keep doing the same things over and over again, can I really be said to have learned my lesson in the first place?
The point of this is that I know that drawing fishnet material is a pain in the ass. I know this from experience.
It's a particular pain in the ass if you're trying to draw it right, and while I may not ultimately do so very often, in general I at least start out wanting to do things right. I mean, I don't sit down to draw a picture thinking, "I'm going to do a half-assed job on this."
Again, whether or not I actually do isn't the issue.
Still, when I looked at this picture I found myself not thinking about the lessons I've learned about what a pain in the ass it can be to draw fishnet material and instead found myself thinking, "It probably won't be so bad this time around. I mean, it certainly won't lead me to scream obscenities at my monitor and want to throw my graphics pad stylus at the wall hard enough to embed it into the drywall."
I also thought that in the end it wouldn't look half-assed.
What's that they say about doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results?
In any case, this is the end result of my many hours spent swearing at my computer and cursing my inability to learn:

There was much about this picture (of actress and Playboy model Lisa Boyle) that I liked and that made me think it was worth taking the fishnet challenge.
The main thing I liked was the unusual perspective and the effect that it has on focus, bringing her head and upper body into sharp focus while giving her lower body and the background a soft focus. I also liked the expression on her face and the fact that there seemed to be multi-colored lights shining on her body, giving a different tint to different sections.
Of course, those aspects that I liked were forgotten as soon as I started on the goddamn fishnet.
The other problem with this picture was that it was having the "one damned thing after another effect." For example, after I finished the fishnet - if not entirely to my satisfaction - her hair proved to be a pain in the ass. After I finished the hair it was the time spent trying (and failing) to get a chiseled effect with my signature, making it look as though it had been carved into the sidewalk.
Overall I'm fairly pleased with how it turned out (I really like the face and how I caught the expression, and I think I pulled off the perspective pretty well), but it was a lot of painful, irritating work, and the fishnet will probably haunt my dreams.


Anonymous said...

Well, if you have to learn a lesson, it might as well be learned while staring at a nice set of hooties.

Merlin T Wizard said...

I have to agree with anonymous. Very nice work, Jon. If I wasn't at work, I'd probably keep this picture up on my screen for a while longer.