Elliot Next Animated + Process

I met Elliot at a new-LA-family Thanksgiving in 2012.  We were both there because R___ had invited us to his gallery for the occasion.  There was a last minute change of plans, which we should have seen coming, because the wonderful woman who was cooking the traditional Thanksgiving feast lived a few doors and a couple flights of stairs away and cleverly decided that we should go to her instead of her carting the feast to us.

Though sitting in a stranger’s living room with other transplants (I assumed) and the host’s friends was awkward, I was [to quote Mrs. Peacock from Clue] determined to enjoy myself.  Not that any effort was needed.  Holidays put me in a good mood because I have always enjoyed hanging out with my family and eating delicious food during them.

A few punk or metal kids enthusiastically pitched their upcoming gig and gave out tickets.  A man with a cane and a woman with extremely large…personalities [read breasts] sat on the couch.  We unintentionally played musical chairs as people filtered in and out: to the kitchen to grab a beer, to the hallway to go to the bathroom, up the stairs to have a cigarette on the roof.

I met Mike (Elliot Next) on the roof.  The story isn’t that exciting, actually.  I’m just happy that I remember it so well.  On the roof we talked about art and music.  Turns out Elliot had studied everything I have ever wanted to know (hyperbolically speaking, of course).

I think the next time I saw him was when I was outside of R___’s gallery a few months later and he was walking back to his place with a pizza.

Fast-forward a year full of a few encounters, getting to hear his music and see his art, brief and otherwise conversations, etc. and I’m so happy to know him!

This is an animated portrait based off a photo I took at Schmaqulin, his Wednesday night residency at the Five Star Bar in Downtown LA.  It’s always a good time.  You should come!  [Schmaqulin is a weird word, yes.  Elliot asked me to help him make a promotional video that would be mostly people trying to pronounce it.]

As far as the art goes…

I’m getting better at drawing portraits.  I use thinner lines, now, which may make the shapes too seamless.  I’d like some seams…

[Also, I should be using Illustrator…I know, I know]

I am definitely still in the process of figuring out animation on Photoshop.  I’ve got the gif thing down to an extent where I’m satisfied with my progression, but I need to let Photoshop go and learn how to use Flash or something.

I tried saving the filing as .mov, but the fps are all messed up/don’t translate.  I may just be missing a button or setting adjustment, which would be lovely (once I figure it out).  I have a feeling that I’m missing more than a button, however, and I’ll have to learn something new again, which will be interesting while painful and then eventually second nature.

Part of my hard way journey: I made slideshows on YouTube because my videos weren’t loading.  I saved the frames as jpegs and just committed to some editing time.  I kind of like how they turned out, but the resolution quality is unsatisfactory.

I would also like to add sound.

I plan to hit the YouTube-verse to find some 12-year-old who knows how to do all this stuff and can explain it using pictures and nonchalance (which is how I learned how to animate on Photoshop).

If I had to pick a non-animated version of this portrait to be the final draft:

eilliot next lorna alkana black with white stars

The animated version (the second time I actually started a drawing with the intention to animate – I haven’t posted the first one yet.  Believe me, I’ve grown a lot…)


Another gif that shows a bit of the process behind the drawing and the animation:

And some stationary documentation of the process:

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Send me an email if you have a request or inquiry: lornaalkana@gmail.com


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