Friend Portraits: Karan Singh

I've started a new project roughly titled "Portraits-of-my-friends-who-make-and-do-cool-things." The current list is already pretty long since I happen to live in a really awesome city, surrounded by really awesome people, many of whom make really awesome things. And for this same reason, in order to get through them all, these drawings are going to be done rather quickly, and I must caveat of course that I'm not going to get everyone's faces just right... especially the early ones. Afterall, I'm doing this for semi-selfish reasons—to try and work on my portraiture, and it's been a while since I practiced. Friends: thank you in advance for letting me experiment on you. You guys inspire me, after all.

The first victim is the wonderful Karan Singh. Karan is an import from Sydney. We first met for about 30 seconds at my very first gallery opening in Sydney in 2009. Karan is a crazy awesome illustrator/designer with an unbelievable knack for vectory illustration and typography. I'm particulatly a huge huge fan of his daily quickies. Last year Karan moved to NYC with his also incredibly talented and lovely girlfriend miss Ashleigh Leech to work over at Vault 49 (...with some other friends and potential portrait victims... muhaha!) Somehow Karan also manages to keep a steady flow of personal work as well as work for our Depthcore family going. Thanks for being such an inspiration and awesome dude. You rock Karan. You rock.

Final piece: pencil, watercolor, digital. Original drawing: 11" x 14"

And here are some process images... maybe too many. I ran into a couple problems which I didn't realize until a bit too late. I went too dark with features before I felt confident they were in the right spots, and then they became too dark to erase and fuss with. I ended up doing a little warping and masking in Photoshop for what I felt was off. It's still not just right, but I ultimately decided as long as the likeness was enough, a little bit of incongruity is nice. At least that's what I like to tell myself :) Karan assures me it's fine. It passed the girlfriend test—Ash recognized him immediately. Yes! Thanks Ash!

Addendum: I don't think I'm going to be able to make this post without the story of actually getting to horrify my friends in person when I present them with their portraits. I mean really the best part is getting to hang out, isn't it? That's where the real stories happen, and the real memories get made. Karan was such a good sport too—oh man, thanks dude.

A few of us all met up at Don Pedro's to see another friend of ours Sal's band the Versus Narrow, who absolutely killed it, I might add. They also may or may not have played after a band called Human Toilet. My girl Jess looked babely with her black eye, Budweiser and broken finger. And then I walked home alone from Brooklyn across the Williamsburg bridge—headphones in, volume high, one beer buzz in effect, feeling grateful for my friends and this fucking amazing city.