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  Bob McLeod's space inspired drawings and more

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Author Topic:   Bob McLeod's space inspired drawings and more
Bob M
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Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 05-25-2014 06:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Before I was a space collector, I was an artist. But I've always been interested in space exploration and back when I drew often, I did several drawings relating to space, including one of Neil Armstrong shortly after him walking on the moon.

So, for those who may have interest in space autographs, space drawings, and many other drawings of people and things, please take time to visit my updated website.

The album containing space and other drawings is at the bottom, down past many albums of space material I've acquired during 42 years of collecting. What is shown there is a good representation of one individual's life-long involvement in hobbies of great interest.

Joel Katzowitz
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Posts: 420
From: Marietta GA USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 05-25-2014 08:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Joel Katzowitz   Click Here to Email Joel Katzowitz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Whoa, Bob, your drawings are fantastic!!!

I love your style. I drew a lot as a kid and pencil sketching was also my preferred technique. I eventually became a designer which required me to communicate my ideas through drawing. But, inevitably, I migrated to 3D modeling and rendering with computers and let my hand skills erode. Lately, I've been thinking about picking up a pencil and giving it a go.

Your portfolio might have provided the spark I needed to get some graphite on my hands. Perhaps I should drive to your house and get some lessons. As good as I was, I never reached the level of your work.

I really like the tight portraits but the looser stuff, very Paul Calle-ish, I like even better. Beautiful.

gliderpilotuk
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Posts: 3208
From: London, UK
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 05-26-2014 06:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, those drawings are just stunning. I especially like the Churchill and LBJ, which really draw you in to their eyes and the subtle skin texturing. It's a remarkable skill to produce work like this.

I also enjoyed the clarity and precision with which you have displayed your extensive collection. I know I've been promising to do this for years, so now I've got a role model, but don't expect any sketches!

Gilbert
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Posts: 1020
From: Carrollton, GA USA
Registered: Jan 2003

posted 05-26-2014 07:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gilbert   Click Here to Email Gilbert     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, I really enjoyed looking over your portfolio. Your work is very good and evokes nostalgic memories.

Thanks for sharing.

bruce
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Posts: 855
From: Fort Mill, SC, USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 05-26-2014 09:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for bruce   Click Here to Email bruce     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for sharing these, Bob. Excellent work!

Joel Katzowitz
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Posts: 420
From: Marietta GA USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 05-26-2014 10:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Joel Katzowitz   Click Here to Email Joel Katzowitz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You may not know this but Gilbert is an accomplished artist himself. I've seen some beautiful portrait work from him.

I hope I didn't make you blush Gilbert.

garymilgrom
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Posts: 1776
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 05-26-2014 02:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob your drawings and comments remind me of noted auto illustrator Werner Buhrer.

Werner_Buhrer 400px

Philip
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Posts: 5014
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 05-28-2014 12:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Amazing artwork!

onesmallstep
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Posts: 731
From: Staten Island, New York USA
Registered: Nov 2007

posted 05-28-2014 03:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for onesmallstep   Click Here to Email onesmallstep     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What an impressive collection of covers/signatures, and excellent drawings! Your style reminds me of the late William Joffe Numeroff, who drew many portraits and envelope cachets of space subjects in his long career.

Bob M
Member

Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 07-22-2014 02:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the nice words, guys.

I collected "space" for many years, but it had been a long time since I drew anything relating to space. My time was spent collecting, not drawing. But recently I decided it was (past) time to do some drawings relating to space, and especially of those individuals involved in it. So for my first "space" drawing, what subject would be better or more appropriate than the first man in space: Yuri Gagarin?

I was able to acquire two good, clear photos of Gagarin and have drawn two portraits from them. The first drawing is from an early image of him, taken before he flew and while in training. The second drawing is from a later formal photo, with him showing the effects of being older and of the many banquets and dinners in his honor or where he was the main attraction. His was a handsome and interesting face.

Next, I plan to draw a portrait of "our" first man in space, Alan Shepard, and perhaps later Armstrong, among others.

fredtrav
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Posts: 1127
From: Birmingham AL USA
Registered: Aug 2010

posted 07-22-2014 02:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for fredtrav   Click Here to Email fredtrav     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Excellent Bob. Looking forward to seeing what comes next.

Joel Katzowitz
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Posts: 420
From: Marietta GA USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 07-22-2014 06:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Joel Katzowitz   Click Here to Email Joel Katzowitz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Nicely done Bob.

heng44
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Posts: 2742
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 07-23-2014 03:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, that is some excellent artwork. I really like the portraits.

BMckay
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Posts: 2108
From: MA, USA
Registered: Sep 2002

posted 07-23-2014 05:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for BMckay   Click Here to Email BMckay     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, awesome...

Scott
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Posts: 3301
From: Houston, TX
Registered: May 2001

posted 07-23-2014 07:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott   Click Here to Email Scott     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Wow Bob, I am speechless. I never knew you were an artist, much less such a brilliant one. You truly have a rare gift. I enjoyed so much looking through the work you posted on your website. Thank you.

mjanovec
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Posts: 3635
From: Midwest, USA
Registered: Jul 2005

posted 07-23-2014 11:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I somehow missed seeing this thread until now. These drawings are superb, Bob. You really capture faces well and get all of the little details and textures right to inject your drawings with life. The character in the faces really stands out!

Bob M
Member

Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 07-23-2014 05:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks, guys, for the nice words about my drawings. We all have our skills and abilities, and mine is being a good "pencil pusher," while Ed's skill is being a terrific painter of space scenes (and also did a great Sally Ride portrait).

Hopefully, after a while I'll have a finished portrait of Alan Shepard to present here, who would be quite appropriate to follow Gagarin, as he actually did!

alanh_7
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Posts: 1040
From: Ajax, Ontario, Canada
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 07-23-2014 07:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for alanh_7   Click Here to Email alanh_7     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Amazing job. Excellent work.

Bob M
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Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 07-30-2014 04:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As previously planned, I have just finished a drawing of Alan Shepard to continue my series of portraits of famous people in space history. Earlier I did two portraits of Yuri Gagarin, the first man space, and to appropriately follow, shown here is my portrait of Alan Shepard, the first American in space.

As a model, I used Shepard's first NASA portrait photograph. So this is the Mercury-era Shepard, about 12 years before he walked on the moon on Apollo 14.

The drawing was more difficult than I expected, and took about ten hours, over a three day period. His wasn't a handsome face, but it was an interesting face and had character.

Ken Havekotte
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Posts: 2011
From: Merritt Island, Florida, Brevard
Registered: Mar 2001

posted 07-30-2014 04:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ken Havekotte   Click Here to Email Ken Havekotte     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, Oh my gosh -- I had completely forgotten about your artistic talents! I love your pencil portraits of Gagarin and Shepard captured at the time of their first historic space feats. They're so accurate in every detail. Well done, my friend.

Your drawings very much remind me of another space artist, Bill Nummeroff, that did astronaut portraits of all the earlier space fliers, and were signed by them, too, with others containing actual postal cancels here from the Cape that I would help him with.

In continuing the fantastic series, Bob, are there future plans to include perhaps other space pioneers like Ed White, Neil Armstrong, John Young, and how about Robert Goddard, Wernher von Braun, and any others?

heng44
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Posts: 2742
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 07-31-2014 01:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Again an excellent portrait, Bob! I like it very much.

gliderpilotuk
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Posts: 3208
From: London, UK
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 07-31-2014 06:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Superb!

Joel Katzowitz
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Posts: 420
From: Marietta GA USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 07-31-2014 07:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Joel Katzowitz   Click Here to Email Joel Katzowitz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great job Bob and I agree that Shepard's likeness is very difficult to capture on paper.

Back in 1989 I hired an artist to paint the famous silver Mercury Seven portrait full size from the chest up for the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame. Shepard's wife absolutely hated the interpretation of her husband. I believe she said he looked liked a monkey. The artist tried to modify the portrait but never could satisfy her and consequently the painting was never used.

As a side note, I took the painting home rather than toss it into the dumpster. After many years I traded it to another member of this forum. I'm not sure where it is today.

Tallpaul
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Posts: 23
From: Rocky Point, NY, USA
Registered: Feb 2012

posted 07-31-2014 09:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tallpaul     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, very nice. Who's next?

heng44
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Posts: 2742
From: Netherlands
Registered: Nov 2001

posted 07-31-2014 10:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is interesting that one of my first space-theme artworks in 1990 was also a Mercury-era Shepard portrait. The man has a certain appeal to me that makes me want to paint his portrait. I believe I have devoted four artworks to him now.

Bob M
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Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08-01-2014 08:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Wonderfully done, Ed, and certainly captures his likeness and personality well - two very hard things to achieve in a portrait - and the two most important things.

albatron
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Posts: 2195
From: Stuart, Florida, USA
Registered: Jun 2000

posted 08-01-2014 10:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for albatron   Click Here to Email albatron     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob I am SOOOO totally blown away - magnificent stuff! Have you ever considered having any signed?

Thanks for sharing!

And Ed, great stuff as always too!

Bob M
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Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08-01-2014 02:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks, Al, and everyone for the nice words. As far as having any drawings signed, I actually had one signed years ago. It was a drawing of Charlie Duke in his Apollo spacesuit and I mailed it to him to autograph, and he did, but it can't be found.

As far as future space drawings, I have come up with the plan to draw portraits of the seven Original Mercury 7 astronauts. So my next drawing will be of Gus Grissom followed by Scott Carpenter. Only six to go, which is somewhat intimidating.

And, Joel, the brave artist that took on the task of painting the 7 Mercury astronauts from the famous photo of them in their silver spacesuits, has my sympathy. To attempt to paint/draw seven portraits together is something I wouldn't consider because of the difficulty of creating good likenesses of all seven. As you mentioned, the portrait of Shepard was not done well and caused the entire work to fail, even though possibly the other 6 may have been done well.

Individual, single portraits are easier on the nerves, as if one individual portrait is not done well, it can be discarded and began again, with only time and effort lost.

bobslittlebro
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Posts: 136
From: Douglasville, Ga U.S.A.
Registered: Nov 2009

posted 08-03-2014 11:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for bobslittlebro   Click Here to Email bobslittlebro     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, I cant believe this! As many times that I came over your house you never showed me your drawings! Excellent work! I must say I am overwhelmed at how great they are.

Bob M
Member

Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08-11-2014 06:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Continuing my series of astronaut portraits drawn in pencil, I've recently finished a drawing of Virgil "Gus" Grissom. I used an early NASA photo of him as a model, similar to the one I used for Alan Shepard earlier. It's my plan to continue with pencil portraits of the seven Mercury astronauts and hope to do Glenn next, as I'd like to do and present them in the order they flew.

Grissom turned out to be a tough subject, somewhat more difficult than Shepard previously, and maybe not drawn quite as well, although I did well in capturing his likeness, which is the key thing for any portrait. Like Shepard, his wasn't a handsome face, but interesting and had character. More handsome astronauts, Glenn and Carpenter, are coming up.

Joel Katzowitz
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Posts: 420
From: Marietta GA USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 08-11-2014 07:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Joel Katzowitz   Click Here to Email Joel Katzowitz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Bob, what media are you using for these portraits?

I have half a dozen or so Berol Turquoise pencils of different hardnesses laying around my studio. I also have a variety of boards and papers. Now all I need is some talent!

I think the Grissom works really well except for the mouth. (Sorry for the unsolicited critique)

Bob M
Member

Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08-11-2014 04:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
No problem, Joel, as those of us who put our work out in public should expect, and even want, some critiques of it along with an occasional, and hoped-for, compliment.

I'm okay with the way I did Grissom's mouth, but am a little concerned that his left eye is slightly too high. There is no bigger critic of my work than myself and few drawings I've ever done I'm 100% satisfied with. There is always something that I'd like to have done differently or better.

As far as my drawing material, I use standard artists' graphite drawing pencils, some of which are old and are Eberhard Faber pencils, and with recently bought Derwent-Graphic pencils from England. Both Michael's and Hobby Lobby carry a good selection of artists' supplies.

For Grissom and Shepard, I used mainly B and 2B pencils, with HB pencils used for fine lines and 3B and 4B pencils for darker lines/areas.

I use a kneaded eraser almost as much as pencils and it's a very important tool for me.

I prefer illustration board over paper and use Strathmore Bristol vellum 4-ply illustration board. It has a slight texture, or "tooth," that I prefer over slick, smooth paper. It can give a nice texture/effect to the drawings.

So there you have it. Basically all anyone needs to draw are drawing pencils, good paper/board, kneaded eraser and good light. And also a protective clear spray, called "fixative" to keep the graphite from smearing. Graphite is almost like wet paint that you have to be very careful with until sprayed.

Spacefest
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Posts: 1123
From: Tucson, AZ USA
Registered: Jan 2009

posted 08-12-2014 08:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacefest   Click Here to Email Spacefest     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'm impressed, Bob! Paul Calle got nothin' on you! — Kim

Bob M
Member

Posts: 1432
From: Atlanta-area, GA USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08-13-2014 08:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob M   Click Here to Email Bob M     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks, Kim. Coming from you, with you being an exceptional artist, means a lot. Just being mentioned in the same sentence with Paul Calle is a huge compliment.

Steve Zarelli
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Posts: 463
From: Upstate New York, USA
Registered: Mar 2001

posted 08-13-2014 09:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Steve Zarelli   Click Here to Email Steve Zarelli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Truly impressive and beautiful work, Bob. You are a Renaissance Man.

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