Archive for the ‘Digital Art’ Category

Digital Art Sunday: Bugs Bunny Appropriation

About a year ago I messed around a little with making some appropriation art. There’s something about it that doesn’t totally sit well with me, which is weird because there is a lot of appropriation art that I do like. It just makes sense that if I like some of it then I should make some of my own. Why not put my own spin on appropriating popular images? Because, let’s face it, there is a lot of questionable appropriations out there. I certainly wouldn’t be able to single handedly ruin the art form. I don’t really have to dig too deep to realize why appropriating makes me a little queasy. Simply put, it’s just low hanging fruit. There are so many artists, especially on Instagram, who seem to have made an entire career out of painting other peoples images. Some of them do it in a clever way with their own unique twist and others are straight up knock offs. The outsiders perspective (mine, at least) is that all of them are laughing all the way to the bank.

Quick interruption, shouldn’t the phrase “laughing all the way to the bank” be phasing out by now? To get with the times we need to start saying, “laughing all the way to Venmo” or “laughing all the way to Square” or “laughing all the way to PayPal”. Ok, moving on…

And it makes sense that some artists have made appropriating a career. It’s the same reason there are so many remakes/reboots in the movie industry. The path has been paved. Why risk making something new that nobody knows about and attempt to make that new thing popular? It’s so much easier to take something that is already popular with a built in fanbase and just remake that. Like I said, it makes me a little queasy, it’s low hanging fruit, and in way it sort of lacks integrity. After I drew my first appropriation piece (my take on Jiminy Cricket) it took me about three months before I posted it on Instagram. Before that I only showed it to maybe three people. The people I showed it to were supportive of it, which was nice, but I still waited awhile before posting it online for the whole internet to see. I finally got over my apprehension because I realized I’m the only one thinking this much about it, meaning nobody cares. And at the end of the day, making art is fun and if I enjoy the process of making something that’s the important part for me. If the outcome is a success that’s just a bonus. Also, what I did wasn’t a straight up knock off. I added my own style to the original source, which, in the world of appropriation art, is taking something that exists and making it your own. That’s a big difference compared to the artists out there taking something that exists and copying it. I tried my best not to do that.

I could go on and on about this topic, but I’ll stop for now and file it away for another time. Anyway, I posted this Bugs Bunny piece on Instagram back in May and all I wrote for the caption was, “What’s up, Doc?” and now I’ll expand on that. I grew up watching Bugs Bunny. I know a lot of people my age did, but I was really into it. I even had that Looney Toons book with the real life animation cell in it. That totally fascinated me. I had no idea how cartoons were made and when I saw that animation cell in the book it was pretty mind blowing. What I’m trying to say is that I chose Bugs Bunny to appropriate because he really meant a lot to me and I’ve been a true Bugs fan for as long as I can remember. This wasn’t just a mindless decision based on the fact that Bugs Bunny is popular.

I have yet to make an actual painting appropriating a popular character from our culture and I’m not sure if or when I will. For now, since I’m sticking to the digital realm with my appropriation art, I thought it would be fun to throw the characters into my own photos. Here’s the original photo that I used for the Bugs Bunny piece.

I took this photo in the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park earlier this year. It might seem random, but to me it makes perfect sense for Bugs Bunny.

I’m curious what your thoughts are about appropriation art. Not just mine, but the art form in general. Let me know.

Hope you had a fantastic weekend.

– Jeff

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Want to see more?
Check out Jiminy Cricket. I chose him as my first one because he’s not only a cool looking character, but the shape of his head was perfect for the faces I paint.
And also Fred Flinstone. I chose him because I watched the Flinstones when I was a kid and I mistakenly thought Fred’s head was also the perfect shape for the faces I paint. It turned out super ugly, so I hope you get a good laugh at it.

Digital Art Sunday

Ok, first things first. “Digital Art Sunday” is not a thing. I just suck at coming up with titles. At least you know what you’re in for by the title alone. So, here we go!

All of these were made using the Procreate App, iPad Pro, and Apple Pencil.

I don’t really have a title for this guy yet because I might add some more stuff. Other than the perfectly spaced dots that make up his hair and the drips coming off the bottom of his face it actually looks like it could have been painted. At least the background and the white splatter. This is kind of funny to me because my brain tells me if I’m going to draw digitally I should embrace that and make it look digital. If I want it to look like a painting I might as well just make a painting. Ah, but that’s my own silly struggle. In the end I suppose this is a good mix of the two. On the other hand, I just like making stuff and I usually only draw on the iPad when I can’t paint. You know, like when I’m in the car waiting for Elliott to get out of school or when I’m at Red Scooter Deli waiting for them to make me an Iced S’mores Latte.

I love bunnies. When I look close at this I find myself asking, “what gives it away that this is a digital drawing?” The victorian design in the back could really go either way. I’ve used extremely similar designs on paintings with screen printing as well as spray painted stencils. If I didn’t know any better it could be a tough call. However, for me, the whiskers are a dead giveaway. The perfect oval shape of his little bunny nose too. I love this background and the fun thing about digital art is that I can easily change the colors and use the same background image on another piece.

This one doesn’t look painted at all and that’s great. I’m trying to do that more and more because, like I said earlier, my brain struggles with this and I need to embrace the digital look. I do love that Procreate has a “brush” that makes the woodgrain background. That’s fun. Also, I drew the majority of this while at Red Scooter Deli waiting for them to make me an Iced S’mores Latte. Because that was almost the only time I worked on this it probably took me about 2 months to finish, which, if you think about it, is a great testament to how fast Red Scooter can make one of the most delicious drinks I know.


Yes, it’s Jason Voorhees from Friday The 13th. I drew this on the last Friday the 13th that happened in September and you can expect to see it again in December when we have another Friday the 13th. This “appropriation art” is a whole BIG topic I would love to get into, but I’ll save that for another post.

Another blog down. Eleven more to go.

I hope you’re loving Blogtober.

See you tomorrow!
– Jeff

P.S. I always feel douchey when I say “I made this on the iPad Pro with the Apple Pencil”, but I did use those things. It just makes me feel like I’m trying to brag about having cool shit and that’s not the case. It’s just that some people want to know the tools that are being used.

Anyway…
Thanks for looking!

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See me do more douchey stuff on YouTube.
And I would love if you followed my shop on Instagram: @vivapaso.

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