Tuesday Challenges

When Pigs Fly

Swine Flu

Swine Flu

It’s time once again to post my response to the Illustration Friday theme.  This week’s theme is Contagious.  What with all the headlines surrounding the Mexican Swine Flu, I have to believe this is what the submitter had in mind.  I’m also willing to bet that of the hundreds of submission to Illustration Friday, my flying pig will just be one of many.

brain storming

brain storming

I believe a creative mind is just like a goldfish.  Feed it too little, or too much, and you’ll find it floating in the tank.  I spend about five minutes brainstorming these challenges.  I don’t try to think to much about it because it would be very easy to let myself be overcome by indecision.  To many ideas, second guessing and letting doubt creep in are the killers of creativity.  If you’ve ever had a deadline slip by you because someone just couldn’t make up their mind, then you know exactly what I’m typing about.  For this challenge, I set a specific amount of time for deliberation, five minutes.  After than, I grab the one that I think best conveys the theme.  If I am unhappy with the results, I can start over.  Usually, however, there will be at least two that I end up weighing against each other.  I think that if I had gone with the pig in the tie you might have confused the theme for “Men.”

EDM 119: Draw a flashlight



When I went to Certified Welding Inspector (CWI) training, at the completion of the course the instructor handed out these nifty keychain LED flashlights.  They are just the right size and REALLY bright.  The only problem is that they click “on” in your pocket.  Then when you need it, the batteries are dead.  I find it easier just to keep a fresh supplie of batteries around because this flashlight is perfect for the inspections I do.

I Love a Parade

Yay!  It’s a parade in my house!  This weeks theme for Illustration Friday is a Parade.  So I gave Girl2 some pots and pans and asked her to march up and down the hallway banging the “drums.” It took my beautiful young bride 20 minutes after to get the drums away from her and get her calmed back down for her bath.  But dang she had fun parading up and down the hall way.

EDM 116: Draw something round

EDM 116: Draw something round

EDM 116, draw something round, I immediately started singing “Like a Re-ed Rubber Ball…”  Unfortunately, (or fortunately, depending on your perspective) that’s all the words I know.  If only I knew where I could find a round ball.  Having a three year old around once again pays off.

Hierarchy of Love

Hierarchy of Love

Hierarchy of Love

If you stick around this site long enough, you will hear (read) me go on and on about love.  Brought up by hippie-wanna-be parents in the ’70’s I was || close to being named Starshine.  I was raised on movies like “Billy Jack” and “Jesus Christ Superstar” where love is the central them.  Billy Jack was a Rainbow Warrior before rainbows were usurped by the Pride activists.  Combine that with my childhood subscription to Highlights magazine and you can find the inspiration for my Illustration Friday submission this week: Hierarchy of Love.

My mother has fallen out of her chair laughing at this point, and my father is simply rolling his eyes.

Seriously, I had a ton of ideas for this topic.  There are lots of things written for what to do about a creativity block, but not a whole lot about dealing with a creativity flood.  I now have ten projects listed from three basic ideas, none of which I felt I could complete and give justice to by Friday, let alone by tonight.  I have dutifully made notes about them and filed them away.  Rest assured if I ever get around to completing one of them, I’ll tell you about it here.

EDM 109: Draw a flame or flames

EDM 109: Draw a flame or flames

Most of my earliest childhood drawings had to do with muscle cars with painted flames, and flames shooting from the pipes, and smoke rolling off the tires.  They were all black as night with bright yellow, orange and red flames.  Until I saw Grease (the movie) and then many of them were red, white, and silver.  I still love flames on hot rods.  Even my bike has flame tread on the tires.  So does the beanie that I usually wear when I ride.  The other beanies have either Jack Skellington or shamrocks on them.

Weekly Roundup!


EDM 107: Draw a lightbulb

Or, “A Weekly Excuse to Sleep In!”

Well, week one of The Artistic Biker is officially in the tubes!  There was a lot of feedback over the new site, and all of it positive.  To those of you who saw the super-secret thank you page buy following the “donate” link, I can’t thank you enough and I am very glad to know that you are enjoying it.

Monday Discovery: 3…2…1…LAUNCH!

This week’s Monday discovery was the launch of this website.

It’s finally here! It is the official launch of The Artistic Biker. No more
late nights working out bugs! (Yeah, right) No more stressing at the last minute whether or not the blog is going to be ready on time! (Double yeah, right) And finally an end to the chaos, organization has finally settle… Oh who am I kidding…

Tuesday’s Challenge: Tuesdays and Illustrated Friday

This week, and likely many weeks to come, I chose Tuesday to post my Illustration Friday challenge.

…it’s just as the intro describes it: a no stress, fun excuse to use your creativity…

Wednesday’s Figure Drawing: Figure Drawing and such

The first three Tuesdays of the month, I attend a figure drawing group with the Oklahoma Artists Guild.  Wednesdays are good place to talk about that.

…I focused on things like her hands and feet, her shoulders and her face.  Then someone pointed out to me that I could draw hands, feet and faces anywhere…

Thursday Challenges: Internet Challenges

On Thursday I posted a colored pencil challenge from Wet Canvas.

…Imagine, and many of us can remember, when just getting a reference photo was kind of a big deal. You either took the photo yourself and then had to develop the film, process the photos, etc. Or you went to the 1library or 2bookstore and spent forever going through the pages looking for just the right image…

Friday Critique: Friday Critiques

On Friday, I introduced the topic of Friday Critique and invited you to participate.  If you are interested, May has already filled up but you can certainly get in line for future critiques.  E-mail Me and I’ll get you in queue.

…Anyway, it got me thinking that I want to have a permanent feature where I chat with another artist to discuss art and life in general, and then we would critique a couple of each other’s recent works…

Saturday’s Sketchbook: Saturday Sketchbook Vol 1, No. 1

On Saturday, I posted a couple of watercolor sketches done at the Oklahoma City Festival of the Arts.  I also challenged myself to sketch more by telling you that I should.

…Daily sketching is the secret to great drawings.  I have been told that over and over and never paid much attention to it.  I always just wanted to be able to draw.  But just like piano, guitar, golf, and kissing, you have to do it often to get better…


Leigh from Finding My Wings writes:

I would love it if you would post my blog in your blog roll.
thanks for checking it out.
Like your entry for virtual sketch date.
thanks for looking.

My Response:


Of course I will list your blog!  I’m sorry I missed it the first time as yours is one that I am subscribed to.

Jonathan “Blade” Manning

Tuesdays and Illustrated Friday

ifthebardRecently I discovered a new challenge site that I believe will be a lot of fun.  Illustrated Friday posts a theme for you to illustrate every week (on Fridays).  Artists of all media and skill level are welcome to participate.  Many of the folks over there post tips and techniques and will readily answer your questions.  But beyond that, it’s just as the intro describes it: a no stress, fun excuse to use your creativity.  The theme for this week is “Theater.”  Head on over there and give it a go!

edm102exerciseequipmentEDM 102, draw a piece of exercise equipment you use, is just a little presumptuous.  I guess I could have drawn my sneakers, or my feet for that matter.  I have been walking a lot lately.  As a matter of fact, not only have I been speed walking during my lunch breaks at work, but now the whole family walks every evening.  We either walk to the grocery store, or to a restaurant, or just around a couple of blocks after dinner.  But we are walking every day.  Pretty much the only piece of equipment I use is my MP3 player.  I haven’t been using that much lately either as one of my co-workers has joined me in the luchtime trots.  I won’t argue with success, I’ve lost 52 pounds since December.