Random Art Posts

20 randomly selected posts about art from Amdall Gallery’s archives. These include normal graphite pencil or soft colored pencil drawings by Jon. Enjoy!

Back to the Dark Tower – Susannah, Jake, and Oy Drawing (1/13/2018) - It's been a couple weeks since I finished the Dark Tower series, and I still find myself thinking about it. I suppose that's a good indicator of a fantastic story; that your mind wanders back to it even after you've put it aside. Although I'm sure I'll read the series again some day, for now at least, the books are in the review mirror. I've already written some post-series thoughts about the finale, along with sketches of Roland and Oy. Since I think it's a fun outlet for these Dark Tower thoughts to put them to paper, I decided to try Read More
Another Sketch with my Oldest, Alternate Title “Tired Dad” (11/15/2017) - Well, I'm sure it seems like the prevailing theme for all these drawings, but here's another a did of me with my oldest kiddo. I actually started this one in the same session as the last one I did (her dancing, me flailing about), and I finally finished it yesterday. I think I finished the dancing sketch first because I was more satisfied with how it was going. This one didn't turn out exactly how I intended. Here's the final product: So, I was aiming for this big kid to look like she's stifling a laugh, probably laughing at me. Read More
Rock and Roll Beethoven, Historical Photo Account Part 2 (4/22/2018) - Continuing on with the second post in a two part series, the subject of this one is guitar legend Jimi Hendrix. In the first post, I talked about a very cool Twitter account called "History Lovers Club" (@historylvrsclub) that shares somewhat rare photos. They mostly post less common images of famous actors or musicians, but some are interesting scenes featuring regular people. It's a fun account, and over the weekend I decided to sketch a couple of subjects from images they've shared. I'll bet most people know about Jimi Hendrix, or at least are aware of him at a basic Read More
A New Type of Subject – My Sister’s Cat (5/17/2018) - When we were visiting family Mother's Day weekend, I was talking to my sister about something related to drawing. I asked her if there was anything she was interested in, and she mentioned her cat Biscuit. She probably wasn't entirely joking (like with what happened in my Lord of the Rings sketch), but I don't know if it was exactly a formal request or anything like that. But...as we've seen before, I am always hungry for more art ideas, so anything that even sounds like a request becomes a real one! Biscuit the Cat is a really cool fellow. My Read More
Working on More Realism in Family Portraits (2/23/2018) - I have drawn four total sketches of my wife. From what I can see looking at these previous drawings, I don't think I've ever quite captured her accurately. Years ago, I did one of me and her together, and it wasn't bad. I also did a rough sketch I used for my proposal, which looked like her but was no Rembrandt in terms of realism. Then, much more recently, I made one of our family with all four of us. Although it was probably the closest to being accurate of any, I ended up basically ruining it by trying to Read More
My Attempted Tribute to Emmitt Smith (5/15/2018) - A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a post about one of my favorite Dallas Cowboys players of all-time, who recently announced his retirement. Jason Witten is one of the greats, and would have been right at home with the great Super Bowl teams from the early nineties. Towards the end of that post, I discussed how I wanted to draw a few more tributes to my favorite Cowboys. I was in my early teens during that last run as a championship contender (how time flies), and became a huge fan of guys like Emmitt Smith, Troy Aikman, and the Read More
More Video Game Characters – Secret of Mana, Original SNES and Remake (2/4/2018) - I mentioned in a post last week that video games sometimes inspire my sketches. I'm not great at drawing from my imagination, but if I get a spark to do so, it often comes from video games (books play their part too). Previously, I've done sketches inspired by Final Fantasy and Warcraft, but another favorite is an old Super NES game called Secret of Mana. There's a remake of this game coming out in a couple of weeks, so I've been thinking about the game quite a bit lately. The original Secret of Mana came out in 1993 in the Read More
Dirk Nowitzki, Basketball Legend (10/12/2017) - To me, no player exemplifies Dallas sports like Dirk Nowitzki. Texas is obviously wild about football, and the Cowboys are the lead dog in terms of area sports teams (despite their amazing run of mediocrity over the last two decades). You could certainly also make an argument that most Dallas-area sports fans gravitate towards baseball and the Texas Rangers a bit quicker than the Dallas Mavericks. But in terms of iconic, legendary DFW athletes, in my mind Dirk is first. If you were presented silhouettes of various sports stars of the past and present, it would be difficult to accurately Read More
The Challenge of a Close-up Family Scene (2/25/2018) -   This is sort of a part two from my post Friday night about drawing my wife, and the challenges of art involving people you are close to. Basically, the goal I'm striving for is to get some more accurate sketches of my wife, since several I've done in the past didn't quite look like her. The first attempt I think worked out pretty well, and now I'm upping the ante a bit. That sketch definitely looked like her, but she's looking down and it seemed like an "easy mode" attempt. In other words, successful but we could probably place Read More
Random Art, One with Madmartigan from Willow (2/21/2018) - I've got some random recent sketches on hand, so I thought I'd just combine a couple unrelated ones into a single post. My favorite of the bunch is a drawing from the movie Willow. If you haven't seen the movie, it's a fantasy-genre movie from the late 1980s, starring Val Kilmer and Warwick Davis. It was directed by Ron Howard, and produced by George Lucas. In my opinion, Willow is a really underrated movie. It's an enjoyable adventure, with an entertaining cast and fun banter - especially between Davis's Willow Ufgood and Kilmer's Madmartigan character. I was a kid when Read More
Snow Day in Louisiana (1/17/2018) - To my amazement, we actually had a real snow event in Louisiana this week. I think we got about 2-3 inches of actual snow, and it was even cold enough that it didn't melt immediately! It's been unusually cold this winter, which is a really nice change of pace. My wife would disagree, but I actually liked the winters at our previous stop in Northern Virginia. We were there three years, and got the opportunity to experience true seasons and occasional snow. DC/NOVA/Maryland's snow levels are almost just right; some periodic events, but not too many that it becomes a Read More
Fond Memories of Star Trek – Picard, Data, and La Forge (12/10/2017) - When I was a kid, one of my favorite shows was Star Trek the Next Generation. The series landed right in time to entertain a certain nerdy little kid, with new episodes airing between the time I was six to 13 years old. Outside of the Next Generation series, I actually don't really care much about Star Trek. I've never been a huge fan of the first series, although I did enjoy the original cast movies. And I haven't really watched much of any series that followed. But I loved the Next Generation, and still watch it if I come Read More
Dancing Dad – Drawing from a Video (11/12/2017) - A couple months ago, we took the family to North Park Mall in Dallas. While we wandered around, we came across a live song-and-dance thing for kids. It was a guy named "David Chicken," who played guitar, sang, and did fun interactive stuff with the kids in the audience. My oldest daughter absolutely loved it, she danced and cheered pretty much the entire time. Now, I'm an outrageously bad dancer, but when he called for volunteers to come dance during a song, I knew she would love it, so up we went. She danced her little heart out, and I...well, Read More
Dak Prescott and Jason Witten Sketch (12/9/2017) - Despite the fact that the Dallas Cowboys have consistently rewarded fan loyalty over the past two decades with a hefty serving of mediocrity, I am a lifelong fan. I grew up watching the Cowboys, and because they were winning Super Bowls when I was young, I sort of thought that would keep happening. Well, I was clearly wrong about that...but maybe my children (grandchildren?) will get to see a Cowboys team win it all. Provided the NFL lasts that long, anyway (see: concussion statistics, over-saturated schedule, political battles, uneven/illogical discipline, and so on). Somewhat surprisingly, I've actually never drawn a Read More
A Masterpiece from My Oldest Daughter (5/9/2018) - Naturally, this site is primarily focused on things that I've drawn. That makes sense, it's right there in the name; Amdall (me) Gallery (a collection of art). But, my three year old daughter drew something a couple days ago which I thought was really good for her age. I figured, hey she's an Amdall too, so technically this fits into the site's purpose! Our oldest is headed to preschool in the fall, and we've been on a wait list to get her into a Montessori school. She got off the wait list this week, so we all went to meet Read More
Dark Tower Drawing – Campfire Outside the City of Lud (10/8/2017) - In my last post, I discussed an idea for a drawing related to Stephen King's Dark Tower series. I wanted to sketch Roland and his crew outside of Lud, probably by a campfire. In the first article, I talked about some of the challenges I anticipated based on my limitations as an artist. My strength, I think, is drawing people from live subjects or photos. My biggest weaknesses are drawing scenery and drawing from imagination. Once I get outside of the main subjects, I think the quality of my sketches degrades. And coming up with a scene that only exists Read More
Wedding Present for Some Friends (12/25/2017) - This Christmas, we were excited to attend an additional event beyond the usual family get-togethers. My wife's close friend for the last two decades was getting married, and she was the Matron of Honor. Also, our oldest got to be the flower girl. My wife and her friend met in high school, and they've been like family since. I decided to do a sketch of my wife's friend, her now husband, and her little one: I never know how these drawings are going to turn out, especially the most recent ones. There have been a few that turned out well, and Read More
Messing Up a Guardians of the Galaxy Drawing (4/29/2018) - I'm sure I've said this in many other posts...but sometimes drawings work out, and sometimes they just don't happen the way you want. Unfortunately, I ran face first into the latter scenario this weekend! After a fairly successful Star Trek drawing, I decided to take a crack at the Guardians of the Galaxy crew. I've been trying to get myself caught up on the Marvel movies for Avengers Infinity War, so I watched the second movie a couple days ago. Much like the first Guardians, I really loved this one. I thought it would be cool to capture these great Read More
Hometown Series, the Unfinished One (3/25/2018) - At the beginning of this month, I started something I referred to as a "hometown series" of sketches. Basically, I tried to capture some scenes of friends from my hometown, mostly from old (really? 10-15 years is old?) photographs I have. I sketched some of us in a football huddle, a couple guys chatting, and a group shot. One common complaint I shared in those posts is I just don't have that many photos. This was mostly the pre-smartphone era (except for the third in the series), so I didn't have a million sources of inspiration to choose from as Read More
Tiny Art Show Opening at the River Oaks Arts Center (11/18/2017) - Way back in September, someone told me about an art show in Alexandria, Louisiana that featured only "tiny art." All entries for this show had to had to by 5" x 5" x 5" or smaller. It sounded interesting, and I had just gotten back into drawing; I figured I may as well enter something. Tiny art is definitely a unique challenge, and I discussed my experience drawing and going through the "call for entry" process in previous write-ups. Fast forward a bit, and I ended up getting one of my entries accepted for the show! Friday evening was the opening Read More