Once in a while, a walrus is born with a natural aversion to shellfish and one such walrus was Sophie. At every meal, Sophie would cringe at the stack of molluscs before her, holding her nose and making faces as she swallowed. Her mom would say, “It’s just a silly preteen phase”, and Sophie would roll her eyes and dump her remaining molluscs back into the ocean when no one was looking.

One day, when she was feeling particularly blue at the prospect of eating great piles of slimy clams for the rest of her life, Sophie found something extraordinary. A solar powered Easy Bake Oven had washed up on the shore. That night, as her mom passed around the usual serving of molluscs, Sophie presented her freshly baked kelp muffins.

Soon, Sophie was in business baking for her entire herd and operating her own bake stand for tourists and marine biologists.


Notes: As warned in my last post, this is unfinished/unresolved, and while it’s extremely frustrating for me to put this out here in that state, it’s the right thing to do. I’m having a bit of an internal tug of war with the purpose and guidelines of this longterm project. Initially, the goal was simply to learn the tips and tricks of Photoshop. As I’ve been working, however, it’s become pretty clear that all these years of not drawing are holding me back as well. So ultimately, I’m learning Photoshop, but I’m also getting some much needed practice with drawing and composition and the general elements of art. Put all of this together and it seems impossible (right now) to reach my goal of 5 (resolved) illustrations a week. I also don’t want to be in such a rush that I don’t make time to learn new things. So there will be character sketches and works in progress ahead mixed with more finished work.

Regarding this specific image, I’ve been painting again and using a few texture brushes. I started with a much larger composition but cropped it down in a desperate effort to finish it. It’s a pretty boring composition, driving home the message that I need much more practice. I also did the sketch in Photoshop and used the “multiply” setting in layers so I could draw on top and see my lines. I later merged it with a background layer and forgot about it until it was too late. See this video to understand why that’s a mistake I won’t make again. So, all in all, I learned some good things with this piece, most of that through mistakes, which they say is the best kind of learning. 


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