Aug 25, 2011

Danny Does Tommy



From Danny Gregory.
A few months ago I decided I wanted to make a series of films about illustrated journaling. Not a how-to, step-by-step sort of thing but films that capture the adventure of drawing, the discovery, the spirit, the fun. I hope they will inspire you to make drawings (and films, if you want) and to keep an illustrated journal as a regular part of your everyday lives.
My 17 year-old son, Jack Tea, has joined me in this project and together we have worked through lots of technical obstacles to make films that look as good as we can make them on no budget. Our inspiration comes from the Cooking Channel, from Etsy's vlog, and from too many decades of loving movies.
We shoot on our Canon 7D, rent different lenses (in this case we relied heavily on the 100/2.8 L IS Macro) each weekend, use Jack's skateboard as a dolly, and rope our friends in for help and opinions.
Our first film is called "The Art of Breakfast".
Here's the newest film in the series, a portrait of my great friend, Tommy Kane, as he rides around his neighborhood in search of something new to draw. Tom is a great traveller — he regularly posts sumptuous journal pages made on his vacations and business trips. His favorite home-away-from-home is Korea and he has made many amazing drawings on its streets and in its markets.
This time, we decided he should travel through his own neck of the woods, see it anew like a visiting stranger and capture a mundane little corner and fill it with his particular brand of magic. Normally Tom works mainly on site, dragging out all of his materials onto the pavement around his little folding stool but instead we decided to expand the scene and show you some of Tom's home and studio and incidentally some of the wonderful big paintings he's done on canvas.
When journaling, he works in Uniball, watercolor and pencil, sometime in books, sometimes on loose sheets of bond or watercolor paper. He is a meticulous crosshatcher and spend hours on some of his drawings. When we draw together, I invariably start to chafe at the bit and beg him to finish at home as I am tired of sitting in his shadow, my own drawing long finished and yellowing on the page, glazing over as he crosshatches more and more details.
We shot the film in two days — on the streets of Brooklyn and in Tom's home where his lovely wife, Yun, made us lunch and watched our obsessiveness with a bemused smile. It was the height of a baking summer and storm crowds rolled in and out, marring our continuity.
We shot an extravagant amount and it took a month to wade through it all and pare it down. The first cut was twice as long as what you'll see today, but we resharpened our blades and ruthlessly trimmed back to the bare essentials. We tried to retain the essence of how Tom works, the way he layers media and adds detail. It's fascinating to see how his drawing builds and builds — when you see the final result, it's often hard to figure out how he got there. With this film, I hope you'll share in how the journey unfolds.

26 comments:

Ann's Art said...

Brilliant - Both Danny and Jack Tea's work, but also your drawing and painting. Danny is right, you are meticulous, with your drawing but boy does it pay off. Wish I could get half way that much detail into my work.

Nita said...

I love watching your process! I kept wondering what was going in that one blank window space--super choice of the blue reflection!

Benjamin j. said...

You are a criminal stealing the sites away from the world. Lol thanks for taking me away from my little town and transporting my mind to the back streets of where ever you went. Love your line work. stay awesome Mr. Kane

kane said...

The Gregory's are the best.

kunstzinnigdagboek said...

Thanks Tommy, for working with Danny on this awesome film! I've enjoyed it loads. I didn't know your work, but the film got me really curious...

Kym said...

I loved the film too. Your process is interesting. I love your art. Is that a custom chop you had? If so, I would like to learn more about that. Where did you get it? Thanks!

kane said...

I got it in Korea. My wife is from there so she knows things. She helped me.

suzanne cabrera said...

An incredible video Tommy! Nice seeing this side of you...and your lovely home!

Anonymous said...

Great video Tommy. Props to you and the Gregory's. Fun to see you in action.
Ed Beard

Mattias said...

a great film Tommy and Danny

kane said...

Wow, the great Mattias even liked it.

phd thesis said...

very cool post! thanks!

thesis help said...

good article! keep posting! I like it!

Yun Stouls said...

Thanks for the "Adidas" addresse! One more question, does "Yun" in Korean means "cloud" like in Chinese?
Greetings to her from another Yun.

Xavier Salomó said...

Great video, and great job, Tommy!
Amazing, really.

MollyGirl said...

love, love, love seeing into your creative process, tommy! have reposted in order to spread the inspiration. thanks for sharing.

kane said...

This video is a big success

J.Espadaneira said...

Maravilhoso!!!!

kathy said...

Loved watching this video, beautiful work! What waterbrush are you using? Another fantastic video from Danny and Jack Tea.

Patricia said...

Hi,
It's an honour to have you as a follower on my blog.
I think it's a great film!
I wish I could lose some insecurity so that I find the fun of drawing again and even dare to sketch on the street =D
May I share this film on my own blog?
I read that you travelled all over the world so if you are in Holland again you're always welcome to visit us in Neeritter ;-)

Something Different said...

Love this!

Kayley Provow said...

Very cool! I always love watching other artists draw. Great video and great art!

Stephen Gardner said...

Absolutely wonderful, I'm about to watch it again.

Rob said...

Tommy, you must be so pleased with this film. Its the business! Love the neighborhood and your work, and to top it all off, personalised shell-toes and a fixie bike!
Inspirational stuff...

matt said...

I really like this film

kane said...

Thanks everyone.