The individualistic creations of jesse lewis a digital portfolio

Photo taken in Florence, Italy, 2015.

"Faces"

"Faces". 2015. Ink. 6"x8.5".

Technique: I started each drawing by sketching the outline of the face in pencil, making sure to block out all of the important facial features. I then used a Staedtler fine liner in 0.3 to outline the face and fill it it with geometric shapes of different sizes. Line and shape were used to add dimension to the face. Hatching of different thicknesses was added to create shading of different values. A person's hair has multiple different tones and hues so to recreate that in a black and white image, I used different types of hatching. High points of the face such as the forehead, nose, cheeks, and chin were left completely white to make them stand out.

Meaning: The geometric shapes that fill each face were inspired by facial recognition technology. Facial recognition technology uses key points o the human face to recognize any face in the world. Even though all of us have these same points that allow our faces to be recognized, we all look different from one another. This piece is meant to show how we are all different, yet similar. The fact that we are all in our own way special and unique is a beautiful thing.

"Peacock"

Technique: I used Model Magic to create a base for the sculpture, first making the body and making then a thin, curved piece for the tail. While waiting for the clay to dry I made a pair of legs by using pliers to bend and shape pieced of wire that I would be able to stick into the clay. After the clay dried I glued the tail onto the body and proceeded to cutting out the feathers. Each feather on the sculpture was cut out individually out of either coloured construction paper or Bristol board using an Exacto knife. For the tail feathers I layered four different colours make them look as close as possible to a real peacock tail feather. After making and attaching all of the feathers to the tail, I made the light green back feathers by using a hole punch to create small circles. For the dark blue body feathers, I cut out individual semi-ovals, and then cut slits into them to make then look more feather-like. To mimic the pattern on a peacock's wings, I used a black marker to draw lines on a pice of white paper. After attaching all of the feathers, I made a beak out of light brown construction paper. Finally, for the peacock's crown feathers, I cut three short pieces of wire with the dark blue paper glued to the top, and stuck them into the head.

Meaning: Peacocks are a symbol of integrity and the beauty we can achieve when we endeavor to show our true colours. In today's society people try so hard to impress and please others, instead of actually doing things for themselves. It is important to remind ourselves to stay true to ourselves and I wanted this sculpture to remind me of that. I also love the uniqueness of peacocks, especially their tail feathers, and wanted to recreate them in my own way,

"Avocados"

"Avocados". 2015. Acrylic. 22"x18".

Technique: The first step was to paint the background in a light, washed out brown colour, making sure to use very large brush strokes, purposely making it look patchy and uneven. I wanted to start the painting looking rustic and old fashion. I then painted a plain white tablecloth in the midground ground, also using large brush strokes. Next came the the avocados, starting with the light green middle, then gradually getting darker as it neared the edges. I finished the avocados by painting the pits and pit-holes, making sure to keep in mind that the light source was coming from the left side when adding shading. I chose a dark blue paint to add the shadows being casted on to the wall and table cloth because I wanted to add more colour to the piece. After adding shading, I felt that the painting was missing something, so I used a light blue pain, to complement the dark blue shading, and added striped to the previously plaint table cloth.

Meaning: This painting was done for my mother. Avocados are one of her favourite foods, and she also requested that I paint her something that she could hang up in our kitchen. The blue and white stripped table cloth was inspired by an old blanket that my grandma used to use the she and my mom would go on picnics when my mom was young. My mother says that this painting, decorated with the antique looking frame, reminds her of something that would belong in the house she grew up in.

"Rhinoceros"

"Rhinoceros". 2016. Graphite. 8.5"x6".
Close ups of the different textures used in the rhino's face.

Technique: I started this piece by drawing out the basic shapes on the rhinos face (the horn, eye, mouth, ears, and folds in the skin). I then slowly started adding detail in the skin by layering the pencil to create differences in value. I looked up reference photos of real rhinos to make it look more realistic. The different textures on the skin were created by using a variety of different patterns and shading values. For the scale-like skin on the neck I drew out all of the individual little circles and then added shading near the creases and folds. To finish the drawing, I used a very dark 8b pencil to thickly outline the rhino's head and then gradually faded it out into a light scribble-like texture.

Meaning: This piece is meant to express the beauty of these animals and how important it is that we protect them, since rhinos are on the endangered list. Rhinos are beautiful, genteel creatures and I wanted to express that through this piece. Only the head of the rhino was drawn to symbolize how poachers mount the heads of the animals they kill on their walls as trophies.

"Slanted"

"Slanted". 2016. Parer Cut. 8"x11".

Technique: First I used Photoshop to alter the contrast of the photograph that I had taken prior to the project, making sure that the dark and light areas were very promenent and clear. Using a light table, I then traced the image onto a piece of paper, only drawing the negative spaces that I would cut out later. This required a lot of time and thinking because I had to make sure that all of the white areas were connected to the edges of the piece, or else it would fall apart. During this step, I altered some of the details from the original photo so that the piece would be more sturdy, but also added some details to make it more interesting. Once the drawing was finished, I photocopied it so that the image was flipped, so that I didn't have to worry about seeing any pencil lines on the good side of the finished copy. When it was time to start cutting, I used an Exacto knife to carefully cut out all of the negative spaces. I started by cutting out the windows from the buildings, and when the buildings were done I moved on to the tree. When the piece was finished, we put in a clear plastic case so that people would be able to see that the negative spaces had been cut out, not just coloured in black.

Meaning: This piece shows my love for travel as it is a photograph that I took while in Amsterdam in the summer of 2016. The row of houses facing a canal, is a very common sight, while walking on the streets of Amsterdam. Most of the houses there are tall, skinny, and are slightly tilted forward. Even though all of the houses are similar looking as they are all tall and skinny, each house also has very different features with their distinct details on the windows and roofs. I especially tried to make each building different and stand out, even if that meant adding or changing details that weren’t in the original photograph.

"Cart"

"Cart". 2016. Mixed Media. 22"x18".

Technique: First I drew about 10 thumbnail sketches of different surrealistic spaces. Once I picked one I drew a rough sketch on the room in my sketchbook, blocking out where everything was going to go. When I was happy with my design, I moved onto a large sheet of rough paper and drew everything, making sure it was exactly how I wanted it to be in the good copy. I did this so that I could trace the image onto the good copy paper. When it came time to add colour, I started by laying down a thin layer of watercolour over the entire piece. I then added shading and detail with the pencil crayons. I continuously added layers of both pencil and paint until I was happy with the colour values.

Meaning: The idea for this painting was inspired by an old grandma’s living room. I wanted my room to be so ugly that it was beautiful, with clashing floral everywhere. I wanted to have a surrealistic play of the cliche of an "old cat lady" and insead of people living in the house, there are human-cats who love contemporary dance. The title "Cart" comes from cat-art. I paid a lot of attention to the little details in the room, such as the matching chair, curtains, and pillow, which all have the same green floral print, and the pictures that are hung up on the wall. Each picture is different and weird in its own way. There are many different cat family portraits displayed, as well as American Gothic and The Scream, but instead of featuring humans, they have been replaced with cats. Each of the cats are also special as they are doing their own pose, and each have a different style of black dance clothing. I also wanted to incorporate cats that I know and love, the all-while cat bung my cat Buffy, the grey and white one sitting on the pink couch is my friends cat Louis, and the orange tabby cat is my neighbours cat Jake.

More Work

Credits:

All my own artwork. 

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