Rock Bottom : Post 08 – Rivet No. 4 Feature

Last week, I got my hands on the latest issue of Rivet, an OCADu Student Press publication that showcases the work of OCAD University’s students and alumni.

As you can see, the illustrations do not have their normal colouring since they were printed as duotone images using a risograph printer. It is always interesting to see how your work translates to print – especially when printed using techniques that deviate from the norm of inkjet and laser printers.

Rock Bottom : Post 07 – Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie, now an Academy Award-winning actress and humanitarian, conquered childhood bullying, depression, substance abuse, among many other traumatic experiences that allowed her to eventually portray an extremely diverse range of roles and inspired her humanitarian work.

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed. 

Rock Bottom : Post 06 – The 14th Dalai Lama

Tenzin Gyatsothe 14th Dalai Lama, witnessed great adversity in Tibet while he was forced into exile from his homeland. As a result of this, he was able to bring Buddhist teachings to the West and promote interfaith dialogue between major religions of the world.

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed. 

Rock Bottom : Post 05 – OCADU’s 98th Annual Graduate Exhibition

Labour day usually marks the end of summer vacation and the start the school year. Coupled with packing the family van way past bursting point (R.I.P. Ford Windstar), and forcing my brothers to cram in the backseat with no leg room for the five hour drive, labour day to me has been about moving all my possessions into a new residence or dorm room while my dad wistfully snatches glimpses of the Canadian International Air Show in between boxes. This year, for the first year since Kindergarten, labour day has rolled around, the airplanes are soaring ahead, but I am no longer going back to school!

To celebrate the end of school and the first step into the “real world”, here are some long overdue photographs of my illustration thesis display from OCADu’s 98th Annual Graduate Exhibition this past May. The last image is the beautiful view of the city from OCAD’s large windows – that’s one sight I will dearly miss!

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed.

Rock Bottom : Post 04 – Maya Plisetskaya

Maya Plisetskaya’s family was sent into turmoil when her father was taken away and executed for their Jewish heritage. Soon after his death, her pregnant mother was sent to work in a labour camp. Throughout this, Maya lived with her aunt and trained hard to pursue her passion – dance. She became the prima ballerina of the Bolshoi Ballet of Moscow and her success eventually allowed her to dance well into her sixties.

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed.

New Scanner

After much deliberation, I finally invested in a better scanner! For the past few years I’ve been using a scanner that has taken to “enhancing” scans by pumping up contrast – turning pages bright white and yellow like dog’s pee on snow. Hopefully, this scanner (the Epson Perfection V600) will prove itself worthy. This is a test scan of a polaroid taken by my brother, Eugene, at OCADu’s 98th Graduate Exhibition. More on that later…!

Rock Bottom : Post 03 – Frida Kahlo

Mexican painter Frida Kahlo was eighteen years old when she was in a terrible traffic accident leaving her with injuries that plagued her health for the rest of her life. From her hospital bed, she learned to draw and paint. Her pain and suffering were subjects she frequently painted into her self-portraits.

“I paint flowers so they will not die.”
– Frida Kahlo

Frida was one of my favourite subjects to capture for the “Rock Bottom” series. Partly because of the amount of pretty flowers I was allowed to draw for the illustration, but also because I challenged myself to draw a portrait of Frida without including her signature and loved unibrow. It was also a question of how to draw Frida without making the final outcome look too reminiscent of a Frida Kahlo self-portrait since her own paintings encapsulate many of the same aspects I had to address for my thesis project.

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed. 

Rock Bottom : Post 02 – Malala Yousafzai

At fifteen years old, Malala Yousafzai is the youngest nominee of the Nobel Peace Prize. Due to her role as an educational and women’s rights activist in Pakistan, Malala was targeted by the Taliban and subsequently shot in the head. The worldwide attention she gained from the ordeal has caused many influential and powerful people to help her with her cause.

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed.

Rock Bottom : Post 01 – Alice Walker

“The Colour Purple” featuring Alice Walker (author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book of the same name) is part of a thesis series titled “Rock Bottom”.

“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.”
– Alice Walker

Alice Walker was accidentally blinded by a stray BB gun bullet when she was eight years old. Due her fear of being bullied and the apparent scarring in her right eye, she withdrew socially and isolated herself in her parents’ fields where she honed her reading and writing skills.

ROCK BOTTOM is a celebration of the now-famous survivors of human tribulation. This series of illustrations depicts “rock bottom” as a place where the successful nurtured their ambition and took risks that eventually propelled them to succeed.