Thursday, February 23, 2012

Strategic Defense Initiative

During the 1980s, one of the last and most ambitious military projects undertaken was the Strategic Defense Initiative, or, as it was creatively renamed by the press, 'Star Wars'. It was basically an attempt to take the Cold War to orbit - figuring out ways of using space-borne weapons to intercept and destroy ballistic nuclear missiles, enemy satellites, and everything in between. It was a fascinating (and potentially terrifying) undertaking, apparently employing as many science-fiction writers as it did scientists. But what would the Soviet reaction - or counterpoint, perhaps - have been had these plans actually made their way to fruition?

With all that in mind, I undertook my latest class project - design a 'forgotten world' of some sort.

What might a soviet orbital laser have actually looked like? And what if one had actually been secretly launched in the late eighties?


What fate might have befallen the crew of such a craft?

"In the event of a meteor strike or any other sort of collision, a variety of emergency fail-safes are in place to ensure long-term functionality. In the case of damage to the radiator system, emergency failsafes are in place to shut off the reactor and associated systems - ensuring
prevention of a critical reaction. "

"Similarly, in case of hull breach, emergency pressure-locks would isolate the compromised section to prevent atmospheric loss."

"In case of emergency situations, or serious incidents that prevent immediate escape, all
ALMAZ stations are fully equipped for contingencies."

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A long-running love affair

Since finding out about the Liang Bua hominid way back in 2008 or so (when National Geographic put out their special on it), I've had a continual obsession with Homo Floresiensis - a tiny human who shared it's isolated island home with Komodo Dragons, dwarf stegodons, giant storks... an un-endingly bizarre and fascinating world! Like any good romance, my relationship with Flores Woman has it's moments of intense passion, but generally is a a slow burn of idle fascination.

This romance heated up recently for a school project, where I painted some pieces for a dummy magazine article. The opening spread: A band of Homo Floresiensis fend off a Giant Maribou Stork from their kill, a stegodon calf.
Flores Man

The inside spread is also an infographic, an attempt on my part to explore some of the fascinating anatomical weirdness of Homo Floresiensis.

If any of that tickled your fancy, I've included a link to a slideshow of all my homo floresiensis sketches and such from my photostream:

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Drawing from Life (and other places)

This semester (my last) has yet another excellent class in store for me - a figure drawing class! The above image is based roughly off of 'the lady of the lake' from Arthurian legend, but recast as a barbarian chieftainess...
This is the painting from life I did based on the same theme...
life drawing feb 1st 2012
...and also I painted some naked dudes...
life drawing feb 1st 2012 b