You may know Mark Crilley from his manga series, “Miki Falls,” or his series with Dark Horse Comics, “Brody’s Ghost.” Or you may know him as the internet viral sensation. Crilley’s drawing demonstration videos have received well over two hundred million views on YouTube. You’ve probably seen them. The challenge is to create hyperrealistic versions of common objects that look just like the real thing—something humans have been trying to do for thousands of years. The French call it “trompe l’oeil.” And now the secrets behind creating this art have been collected in one book so you can see for yourself what it takes to do your own hyperreal drawings.
The Realism Challenge is easy in a lot of ways. Just follow the step-by-step instruction, and you’ll be amazed at the results you can achieve. Even if you don’t fancy yourself an artist, getting to see the process is fascinating. But chances are that, once you become familiar, you’ll want to try your hand at it too.
We hear a lot about the hyperreal world we live in. The realistic work of Mark Crilley is perfectly in step with a zeitgeist that revels in intense, vivid, and urgent reality. That said, realistic art is as timeless as the pursuit of realism.
“The Realism Challenge: Drawing and Painting Secrets from a Modern Master of Hyperrealism” is published by Watson-Guptill, an imprint of Penguin Random House. It is a 160-page trade paperback, with 200 illustrations, priced at $19.99 (Can $23.99). You can find it at Amazon right here.
Did I get the memo right? Soon we will be seeing a new “Star Wars” movie every single day for the rest of our miserable little lives? No, that’s not possible, is it?
Oh, wait, it’s going to be a new “Star Wars” movie every year for the next five years.
That’s still pretty weird.
There are rumblings about it, for sure. Read some here and here.
But, hey, why not? Right? Why the hell not?!
Add to the mix, all the wonderful parodies you’ll get to see along the way.
None the least is a “Star Wars” parody with a full animal cast!
Yes, get ready for “Paw Wars!”
Press release follows:
From the Meows Eisley Cantuna on the desert planet of Catooine, to the giant tennis ball of the Dog Star, the adventures of Duke Mousepouncer begin today with The Pet Collective’s newest “Petody”: PAW WARZ.
“These are not the toys you’re looking for,” Ol’ Bengal Catobi tries to persuade cat-eared Poopscoopers using the ways of the Furs. Does it work?
A second episode of the parody that blends Internet cats with the world’s most famous space adventure will follow next week, answering the oft-debated question: Did Haz Alone shoot first?
But the videos are only the beginning of the PAW WARZ Saga (since every saga must have a beginning). They’ll be presented weekly on The Pet Collective, the leading pet-themed channel on YouTube — and poducers of the short parodies have also created a companion website that offers more details on the PAW WARZ galaxy, from spaceships (like the Rex Wing Fighter), characters (including See 3Meow, Boop Boop Beep Boop and Toada) and planets like Dogobath. With help from fans and the Pet Collective community, the PAW WARZ website will continue to grow.
Anyone looking for an easy way to hook into comics can look no further than the legendary, Stan Lee. He’s a super easy gateway and, for those who look deeper, this will quickly lead to Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, and so forth. Having been interviewed countless times, Stan Lee concluded that he can reverse the roles and be the host himself. Within the YouTube premium channel, “Stan Lee’s World of Heroes,” you will find “Cocktails with Stan.” This is something to see, believe me.
Stan Lee may appear all cute and cuddly, the super easy gateway to comics, but he’s still the same hard-edged guy from his heydey at Marvel. Felicia Day perhaps regrets how she stumbled into a description of her new hobby, ice sculptures. She sort of lazily described to Stan that it’s all done with a chainsaw. “A seesaw? Felicia, please enunciate!” “Chainsaw!” “Oh, chainsaw! But, how the devil would you get the finer details?” Then Felicia admitted that she also uses a chisel! “Oh, a chisel! Well, then it’s not all done with just a chainsaw as you would have had us believe,” lectures Professor Lee, to the surprise and utter dismay of his pupil. The above photo don’t lie, folks. Marvel over all the funky body language. Or view the interesting exchange for yourself here.
Next on the hot seat, the lovely Cara Santa Maria, host of science-centric “Talk Nerdy To Me,” who manages to hold her own with her signature sexy laugh used as a shield as masterfully as Captain America. This time, Stan goes in for the kill but it is a short-lived victory. Cara begins to describe her life’s journey. After getting a Masters degree in Neurobiology, she intended to pursue a PhD in New York but, as she puts it, she fell in love with a boy across the country. “You said that you were in New York but you fell in love with somone across the country. Did you see a picture of him?” No, Cara corrects herself, she met her beau in California. “Then that’s what you should have said. I have to teach you how to tell a story,” nags Stan. No sooner have they gotten through that bit than it comes out that the boy in Cara’s story is Bill Maher. Stan is insistent that Cara reveal details about her and Bill. Cara insists that the details he wants aren’t so private. As it turns out, by the time of this interview, Cara and Bill had broken up well over a year before. You can judge for yourself here.
Just as things are drifting off course, in jumps Jenna Busch, the co-host, or sidekick, to “Cocktails with Stan.” Jenna is a good egg. She has written tons of stuff about pop culture for a myriad of sites. However, she needs to remember that she’s no longer just a super blogger and she does not have the George Burns protective cover that Stan enjoys and seems to approve of anything he says. Jenna’s attempt to save the moment was to ask Cara a science question: “Why do men have nipples?” Not exactly a challenging question or even that interesting. Jenna could have provided an even better save for her boss by having prepped him beforehand about Cara and Bill Maher.
“Cocktails with Stan” is not going to be winning any Peabody awards or even give “Kathie Lee & Hoda” a run of their money. For now, it’s amusing and, what the hell, it’s Stan Lee, for God’s sake, and he’s 90-years-old. The good thing about this show is that everyone seems to want to have a cocktail with Stan. Everyone on the show ultimately comes out a winner. And you can end up learning about some very cool people, like Cara Santa Maria, who is doing a great service by energizing young, and not-so-young, people about science on “Talk Nerdy To Me.”
The street artist, KAWS, made a big splash into the mainstream recently by having his tweaked out Mickey Mouse, or “Companion,” as part of the venerable Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. You can watch an in depth interview with KAWS and renowned painter David Salle on RESERVE CHANNEL’s “ARTST TLK,” hosted by Pharrell Williams, a super talented man himself: rapper, singer, record producer, composer and fashion designer.
As David Salle describes the artist’s life, “It was understood that it would be a hard scrabble at best. You relied on your community of artists.” This proves an excellent entry point for the conversation as all three men share ideas and insights. “I would take the PATH train…and just get out and bomb the highways,” begins KAWS. He later explains his relationship with the advertisement saturated world of NYC and the series of works he has done that, well, technically “deface” ads. This is a way to find “a coexistence,” KAWS says, with all the ads that dominate our lives.
RESERVE CHANNEL’s “ARST TLK” has got a certain style that Pharrell Williams will surely continue to build and take us viewers on many intriguing journeys.