New sketchbook

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In the cool shade of thyme and sage sits my new sketchbook and seems to indicate to me that scanning the drawings was bad idea. Is the look of an image more important, or is it its accuracy in showing off the subject? I understand, people would be upset if they got a print of Monet’s painting as it was photographed in the shade of a palm tree, but that’s another situation altogether.

While my intellect desperately struggles to provide an acceptable and all around agreeable explanation (or plain and simple  – an excuse) for a simple decision to show the first page of my sketchbook in this setting, my more gentle side just notes that although my scribbles might pale in comparison to Monet, they are still quite pleasurable for me to create. I was previously focused on elaborate mandalas, as evidenced in the most recent posts (from two years ago!), it all evolved into plant-like flowing designs when I began painting on glass. More on that later; this post is intended as an introduction to kinds of subjects that might be flowing into these posts – all to some extent related to The Work – personal transformation, which begins self observation and  getting to know how this human machine functions and how to operate it. Even though this is not something that is talked about or shared with friends, I hope to only reach those who are on the same or similar path, or are looking for one and could benefit from information. Thanks to the deities of discovery who in today’s age have to be the search engines, this information shouldn’t be too hard to be found by those who seek it and completely missed by mostly everyone else. I can’t feel too bad for disappointing any of my previous site visitors by changing gears and putting out techniques that might aid in personal transformation, as opposed to tutorials for transformation of geometry using Autodesk Maya’s transformation tools. In yet another words, I shall no longer hang onto my old online persona / presence with bad idea that this blog should continue on in the same way as it has been going for over a decade, and instead rediscover my(true)self in the process of getting rid of all the aspects of my fake self that no longer hold any value for me or anyone else around me. I have surely noticed that I need to question everything, but my own motives first and foremost. And although I had more than just that one reason for not focusing my attention on regular blog posts, I sure as hell hope to be done with obsessing about blog’s continuity and the fear of speaking my mind freely… and most importantly, I hope that I am finally done feeling like a total beginner, a n00b, in this field and enlist a belief (until it becomes experience verified knowledge at last) that I too might have something of value to offer.

I have many more of my creations to photograph and post, and the idea is to post them alongside my observations, as well as things I have learned from various talks and lectures I love listening to while drawing, painting or crocheting. Even though too much time has passed for me to remember what exactly I was listening to while I was drawing these things (I started this sketchbook in April), perhaps I will catch up with posts, and post new things and new ideas as they come up.

 

Mobile Post #1

Since my 4 year old boy is the boss of our PC, I am figuring out how to make my phone work for me. So far so good – I am using WordPress app to write this and PhotoDirector is replacing Lightroom. Here’s my latest character, although I myself am not in the character of that kind of character artist, I have been focused on growing of different kinds, mostly flowers, designs and babies :)

Fogmann, FogLog and me

Even though this is totally irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, for continuity’s sake I figured I ought to mention a few changes that just took place on this blog. Firstly, I made an attempt to reorganize categories and make room for the upcoming prose part of the blog, but I imagine some juggling around will still be needed. Secondly, I changed the tagline from Production Journal to Art and musings by Bojana Nedeljkovic, figuring I might as well put my name in a prominent spot, thus reinforcing my desire to say that this is me, and this is what I really want to say,  instead of hiding behind a pseudonym and not even saying much at all.

What is Fogmann anyway? Where did it come from? I did own foggie.org domain before this one, but decided that it wasn’t sounding very professional. Since I needed a website for portfolio, I added an extra n to Fogman – just one of the names my ex husband called me – aiming to produce the effect of Pendel and Braithwaite in the life of The Tailor of Panama, where this name, made up to sound like a trustworthy name for a business, was used to establish tailor’s identity. To me, Fogmann sounded like a Germanic last name, which when coupled with words like Productions or Studio, will make the whole ordeal seem oh so professional. On the other hand, it is also implying my liking for fog, which by obscuring adds much depth, and in a way symbolizes the journey along the path to knowing – the things emerge from the fog only when you’re moving through it. For this reason I decided to let the name stick around, and look at FogLog as a means to have my understanding emerge from the fog of unformulated, abstract thoughts. In essence, my goal is to learn by sharing my ideas and findings, and deepen my understanding of those findings by virtue of formulating the concepts in such a way that is accessible to hopefully everyone.

Moving on

So the dailies didn’t last for very long… about a month. And then a whole year went by without a single post. Did I stop making art? Why isn’t there anything to show?

My interests in life have shifted to other things, and since this blog doesn’t reflect those interests, my incentive to keep it going is nearly gone. I wondered if I should even keep it around, since it is a production journal and the production has been halted for a little while. It’s not that I am not making any art, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t make the kind of art that I assume most of my visitors are here to look for: mainly 3D and game art. These days I like to do photography, knit, sketch alongside my son Pedja or just close my eyes and imagine all kinds of art I want to see or make. Sometimes I even imagine creating it in a 3D app, step by step. It’s a trip! But if I created it in my mind, it already exists, right? Well, then, how do I share it with the world? Can I just create the file on the computer that has my project all nicely rendered out and saved as video file, ready to go up to YouTube… using focused intent?!? Or do I have to invest tremendous amounts of time and energy (that in itself covers money) to physically create it? Hey, I am not trying to materialize gold here, just a video file, which is non-physical anyway! To materialize the idea? How about we all switch to telepathy and you just download it directly to your 3rd eye ultra HD360 theater? How about that for the next gen?

The absence of posts was mainly due to the identity crisis, combined with perpetual self censoring. I wanted to share so much with the world, but ended up only showing what I believed would be helpful when the time comes to look for another job: for we all know that hiring managers will look you up on Google and you don’t want them to find anything that might dissuade them from hiring you. That limited me to only politically correct works that don’t offend anyone and tell nothing of any importance. And I didn’t write much. The words in the posts were merely there to accompany the images. And yet, writing has been my passion for a very long time; I was writing novels since the age 11, although I was their only reader. As a kid I’ve heard my dad saying that if you want to read something, and you can’t find it, then write it yourself.

I gradually ceased feeling comfortable in the persona of character artist working on video game production for a giant corporation. Luckily, before it became unbearable, I took off on a maternity leave, with perhaps a premeditated decision never to go back to work. To me, sitting in the office to make money so that I could pay someone else to do my job of raising my child, simply is preposterous. And I had to be honest with myself at the very least – I didn’t enjoy game production very much and it often felt like working on an assembly line, cranking out piece after piece of “art” with nearly no creative decisions involved in the process. The novelty and luster of corporate job wore off and I noticed that I am not learning much, if anything, new. But I was making good money and advancing through the ranks in the corporate ladder, so I kept at it for a while.

On the other hand, it became increasingly important for me to understand my own motivation, and to make sure that I believe in what I am doing. Building characters for video games that glorify violence or emulate already boring sports, provide no real or lasting value and serve only as a distraction from reality – this simply isn’t something I ever believed in, but as all enthusiasts who have appreciation for the craft I entered the industry hoping that one day I will work on a game that will make a difference, the game I will believe in. Needless to say, I had plenitude of ideas for such projects, and they keep coming. Maybe one day I will have a favorite that I will actualize, but for now I am happy if I get a chance to edit a few photos or complete a sketch.

I would like to keep this blog – it’s been around for over 10 years now and serves as a testament to my progression through my art and CG skill development, starting right after graduation from college and ending not too long after my game dev career ended. However, I feel like my real progress in life is only just beginning, and I am excited as never before about little bits of progress I make each day on improving my understanding of myself and the universe. Zooming out and looking at life from broader perspective really makes for some impressive shots, and it makes one aware of the shortfalls of focusing in small areas for too long.

With heartfelt gratitude to all those knowledgeable, courageous, wise and enlightened individuals, who shared their wisdom, research, art and discoveries with the world, I am now officially ending the practice of censoring my thoughts and true feelings for sake of some imagined safety, and hope to give back something of value.

Mandala box done

Done two days ago, but I always miss to photograph it during the day on natural light, hence I had to deal with flash + yellow light of a tungsten bulb, but Lightroom helped to get white balance to a better place. The side of the box wasn’t the easiest thing to paint, because, as opposed to fairly smooth lid, the body of the box had too much wood grain texture so that the border between areas of different color weren’t well or precisely defined, prompting me to add what is called dimensional or contour paint as an outline, or the strokes usually painted with the applicator tip directly out of the tube or container. There’s a golden contour paint that I used on the lid to add some details that just works so damn nice, it produces even, thin lines and is just great. My son even thought the label sticker was so tasty on it, he chewed half of it off.

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Decoupaged crates and barrels

Before I’ve decided to paint the crate, I was contemplating decoupage, simply because we have so many beautiful napkins to glue onto any container. I’ve done decoupage on a shoebox, and on two Nestle coffee cans that are used to hold my son’s colored pencils and some of my junk. On the coffee cans I used printed out photos that were stuck onto a can with fresh paint on it, and after half a day of drying I’d wet the paper and roll it off. The print didn’t flawlessly transfer onto the can; there are some spots where it looks like it came off. It is because the paper with printout didn’t completely stick onto a wet paint and so the pigment, or should I say black laser toner, is missing in those spots. On the colorful can with my son’s pencils, I actually didn’t peel away the paper, rather I glued it with its edges thinned (made wet and then rolled the paper off with my fingers) and it worked just fine especially with napkins glued all around it and some paint added to fill the holes. Either way, doing my own design is way more fun than cutting and pasting, although that form of art also has its charms.

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Fruit bowl

This is one of the few paintings I’ve done on a Cintiq – turns out for two years I owned it, I didn’t use it all that much, because hanging out with my man was way more exciting. I am now actually enjoying using Intuos4, because it’s easy to move out of the way and keep in a lap, and feels more like sketchbook than big canvas that Cintiq 24″HD was, taking over entire approachable portion of my huge desk with barely a space for a mouse on the side – oh, but I still loved you, Cintiq! Now with the tablet computer version of it finally available, that’s something I might look into getting, for that was what I always wanted from Wacom, although it being more expensive than 24HD was, I might look into other options, which are these days plentiful anyway.

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