Thursday, January 27, 2011


I've been considering starting a painting project (because I don't have enough projects started, obviously). I really like the look of my bathroom door from the inside and was wondering what it would look like painted in oil, nearly to scale, so I decided to do a study today. I printed out a photo I look of it two weeks ago and used it as reference for the digital painting below. I really like where it's going - I'm going to put more layers in, but I already think that I may stick to digital.

Chewing Gum

Thinking about adding a young, nerdy-type girl to the subway car. I think she'll be a freckled red-head in her Catholic School uniform happily bouncing along, chewing gum. I drew her earlier in the week, and the more I look at her the more I want to see her animated, so today was my first pencil test. Thinking I'll need a *pop* at the end for sure.

Bubblegum Pencil Test from Desiree Stavracos on Vimeo.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Subway Shuffle

I've been thinking about a new idea for a short film, tentatively titled, "The Subway Shuffle". The weather has been crap so I'm on the subway more than usual, and I'm inspired to pay a little homage.
So here are my first concept drawings - sketches for the setting - simple one angle cross-section of a subway car. Thinking about what details to put in, what to leave out. Also some sketches of candidates for the cast of NYC "characters".

Definitely want to get a bad-ass metal head in there. I'll probably give him pupils, since I want him to be lovable like all of my favorite metal friends - but undeniably he looks waaayyy cooler (but meaner) without them.
As for this guy - have to have some grimy dude coming through looking for change. All politics aside - just need a cup-shaking-kind-of-guy.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Some Guy

Sketch, Micron on Paper

Sketched this guy while on the train home from seeing "Repunzel" on Friday night. Meditated a bit whether I wanted to color him, and of course did, so I started on this first treatment.

Color, Photoshop

Color, Photoshop

I liked the purple, but I wasn't jumping for joy over it. Was thinking of going ragged-Christian-Bale circa this year's "The Fighter", but had to sleep on it.

Color, Photoshop

Came back today after leafing through my "How to Train Your Dragon" book and colored it again. Things kind of got Nightcrawler, but I'm OK with that.

FINAL Color, Photoshop

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


brown micron on paper, from photo reference

These go back to the Fall, but I really wanted to include them. The story is, I had a nasty leg abscess that left me with three puncture-wound/bullet hole looking scars on my right leg. Once I was healed and, you know, we could all laugh about it, I was getting all sorts of suggestions for story "embellishments" to explain how I got the scars. My favorite is from my friend Michelle who said that I should say I was attacked by a rabid koala. "Brilliant!" I thought. That set off a series of koala drawings, none of which really became the ferocious one she had in mind. In fact, the closest I got was a zombie koala, and... well... the unamused one you find below. Enjoy.

pencil on paper; initial sketch

Photoshop; my first color attempt
Before I knew it, the color was going in the wrong direction. The application was too tight on the tree for my taste, and the blue was no longer "doing it for me."

Photoshop; final color
I may add some more shadows to the koala and tree to give it the look up being under a "canopy", but we'll see...

Sunday, January 2, 2011

How to Train Your Dragon

My brother gave me the "Art of: How to Train Your Dragon" for Christmas and first off, the book is absolutely beautiful. It offers a lot of insight to the over-all design of the film from different department heads to give a well-rounded creative process type overview of the film. After reading through the book and reveling over the artwork, it was time to draw my own dragon (of course).

micron and marker