Thursday, February 09, 2006

New Sketchbook

I just started a new sketchbook a couple of days ago. It always makes me nervous to start a new book. I always feel this weird pressure to make the very first drawing beautiful, like a first impression or something.
I decided to break it in with some drawings of trees. Gosh i love trees... i'm not a weird tree hugger or anything but i dunno, there's something comforting about them. Where i grew up in Chicago we had ton's of tree's, and lotsa forrest areas. I loved it, and miss them a lot. Tolkien once called tree's "the messangers of all nature to us." I don't really know what that means but it sounds poetic! Sometimes it's easy to forget to just draw for fun. I've always kinda been a guy who draws with purpose... once i got to CalArts i met a lot of people who just drew endlessly. Everything, everyone-- i was amazed at their stamina. and it definately rubbed off. In my younger years i drew quick sketches of humans and animals to get into Disney. Once that all fell apart, i started to actually draw for the sheer joy of it. A VERY healthy thing. It's so good for an artist to just wander in his or her mind creatively on the page. Things don't have to make sense, and often times that's when we do our most fresh work.

Animals fascinate me! I think if i wasn't an animator i might want to work with animals. But, it's a far second to being an animators, trust me. I just LOVE getting National Geographics and studying the way the behave, their gestures, their movement, there "thinking". Anyone who knows me well, knows i am a Christian and i can say this with all sincerity, God is my favorite artist. Yeah, i dismiss evolution, how could all this beauty be a random mistake? It takes more faith for me to be an evolutionist than to be a creationist. Think about it: if i through my pencil and sketchbook in the air a million times in a row in hopes that they'd create something unique, chances are i would get nothing that makes sense or is understandable, or even functional. That's exactly what evolution claims, that everything happened by random chance, not by intention. Not to get one a soap box, i just hate to take away to Glory that is rightfully belonging to the Creator. God's the most original artist i know of... can you make a new color? I sure can't... one of the reasons i love being an artist is because i feel God's pleasure of creating when i draw. He gave me this gift, only to Glorify Him, no other reason.

Blogging brings out interesting things in me sometimes, ha! on other news though I've been keeping up on Curious George movie reviews. I've only read one bad one out of 10. Not bad, not bad at all. Let's hope it rocks the house this weekend! Until next time enjoy the drawrin's


Bobby P said...

Beautiful sketches and great post.

Aaron said...

Nice post. I agree with you on all counts, (Christ included). Sketching freely, whenever, wherever is unbeatable. Just letting your mind go is something you don't often get to do when you're working towards a goal.... Its funny to look back at sketch books, and say stuff like, "what the heck was I thinking back then?..."

Jared Bailey said...

Why couldn't god create things through evolution? Some Christians seem pretty arrogant when it comes to this whole creation vs. evolution thing. If you dismiss evolution aren't you claiming to know how God does what he does?

Love the sketches and the blog.


Matt Williames said...

Thanks guys for the comments- Jared, thanks for stopping in. If you study the Bible God does make it pretty clear how created things. It's clear the big bang has no place in the bible, but yes there are some christians who believe in creationist evolution. The whole idea of God using evolution creates some problems theologically and biblically. I don't really want to debate about it but study up on some experts on both sides. It's not so much arrongance as it is conviction. many many evolutionist dismiss God's existance entirely. thanks for your thoughts!

bill(y) said...


simply wonderful. i would like to add that the real awe for me comes when i think that god would give individuals, like yourself, the ability to do what you do.

that's right...i'm a suck up:)

bjork hater said...

I love your drawings and animations, but I have to correct one thing. Evolution is NOT random. Yes, random mutations are a part of it, but only things that work well, fit the environment better, offer an advantage, survive to pass on their traits. That's why it's called natiral selection. If you think about it, what kind of God would create all those organisms that failed, and went extinct? (disclaimer: I am an non-cynical atheist who finds constant awe in nature)

craig said...

I like your work very inspirational drawings

Matt Williames said...

bjork- thanks for the comment! I was more talking about the big bang as being "accidental". I just don't see this beautiful and complex earth being a cosmic mistake. In Romans 1 it says that nature is enough for us to know the existance of God. and after studying the earth and how fine tuned it is, i can't see it being an accident. as far as the extinction issue, your right, God never intended for things to die off but that is the consiquence and the effect of sin in the world. Everything was made to last, but Adam and Eve's rebellion brought sin into the world and ultimately physical and spiritual death. extinction is one of the many consequences of sin-- thanks for commenting, i enjoy everyone's thoughts very much!

willipino said...

love the bear drawings. good stuff!

Rob Corley said...

Love the blog and the post. I agree completely with you on evolution and the ridiculous issue of blind, random chance accounting for everything we see around us.
Arrogance?? We have been indoctrinated into believing what man has said to be so and criticized for questioning "Darwinian" evolution for years.
It is a slippery slope to climb when Christians try to reconcile the Bible with the assumptions of scientists and their preconceived notions of naturalism.
According to Jared, to dismiss evolution would be claiming to know how God does what he does?
We are not speaking of a mere matter of opinion, but what the Bible (God) claims to be true.
Evolution is by it's very nature "random". Mutations do not improve, but remove information from an organism, making it inferior. New information cannot generate itself and must be introduced by an outside intellengence. Darwinian, Neo-Darwinistic evolution has never been observed or documented. What many fail to realize is that it takes more faith to believe that matter came from non-matter.
Evolution thus becomes as much a philosophical argument as any religion. Both become an issue of "Faith". Faith in an all knowing powerful God and his word or faith in finite human beings with limited knowledge and understanding and an ax to grind against anyone who questions their belief system.
Can anyone give me one "legitimate", "positive" example of something Neo-Darwinism (muck to man) has done for society? Please don't tell me that "it has removed the shackles of organized religion and placed man in the drivers seat of his own destiny". That kind of shallow thinking has destroyed many powerful civilizations and continues to ruin countless lives today. I apologize and don't mean to be argumentative. This is definitely not the place to debate this sort of issue but, I have a problem with hearing the same old pro-evolution arguments everytime someone brings it up for discussion.


Jared Bailey said...

Hey Rob,

I probably shouldn't have used the word arrogant. If for anything, just to keep things calmer. If that's possible with such a debate.

Just a couple of points. I think that you're getting into the mechanics of creation and I don't see anywhere in the bible where it addresses the specific mechanics of creation. All I remember reading is "God created the heaven and the earth". What I see as "random" could actually be controlled by God. I'll at least give you that point.

I don't know where you get the informations that mutations take away information. It changes information. The outcome is neutral, but it affects the organisms ability to reproduce in a positive or negative way.

You're right, it does take faith to say that "matter comes from non matter". That's why I'm agnostic and not an athiest. It's all about faith and that's something I don't have.

One positive example of neo darwinism. Not to be too melodramatic, but we know that the flu mutates. Therefore we know that this whole bird flu thing could blow up at any moment. It happened early in the 20th century and it could happen again. So now we're preparing for it, because we know it's one mutation away from becoming a serious problem.

Great blog Matt.

PS. any chance of getting a tutorial on spacing? Maybe a pose to pose acting type of shot?This is why I really dig your pencil tests. I get to see your spacing charts. :)

Rob Corley said...

The example you give of the flu being a positive example of Neo-Darwinism is invaled. Darwinian evolution deals with, given enough time, a species changing into an altogether new species.
Ex. Amoeba to man. (unobserved- Macro evolution)
Not the mutation of the flu into new, more resistant strains. It is still the flu and not a butterfly.
The flu mutation is nothing more than an example of Micro-evolution within a species. The finches that Darwin observed are a perfect example of that very thing. Dog breeds are another clear example of micro-evolution.
Animals will reproduce according to their given "kind".
Micro-evolution is testable, obseravable and verifiable and the best thing is that it is "Bibilical".
Darwinist's like to extrapolate what they observe in nature and fantasize about the possibility that if a birds beak can change according to weather conditions over a few seasons that given millions or billions of years it could change into a cat! It has never been observed or tested and no fossil evidence exists to verify it. It is nothing more than a fairytale for grown-ups.
Again I challenge you for one "legitimate" positive effect of such a belief?

Sorry Matt for the long post's that have nothing to do with your artwork!

Matt Williames said...

Heya Jared-
I actually do have some previous posts that talk about spacing and timing charts. I think there in the January month??? But i do talk about it a little. i could certainly do a tutorial about pose to pose for ya as well.
Also, thank you for being respectful in your tone about this little debate people are having on the blog. It's a very important issue, and frankly it is a life or death one that needs serious consideration, but that's no excuse for treating anyone poorly, which you have not done. so thank you...
i would just encourage you to think about being an agnostic. Obviously it's someone who sits on the fence in the decision of faith saying that he or she doesn't know what truth is. 2 things: Whether you claim to know the Truth or not you live your life as if you were an atheist. Essentially what matters is your actions BASED on what you believe. i think that you DO have faith... faith that once you die you'll either not exist, or if there is a God he'll be fine with your disbelief. I don't know what you believe, but the point is that you do have faith. Now, the only logical question is this, does the God of the Bible exist? will i be held accountable by Him when i die for my life? and what will happen to me if I am wrong about God and his plan for salvation.
I'm not writting to argue or debate, if i really believe this stuff i HAVE to share it. If there is Truth, and i believe there is, i have to tell everyone i know.
thanks for continuing the discussion Jared!

Rob Corley said...

I too apreciate your respectful attitude and want you to know that if appear to come across strong over this particular issue it's only because I'm very passionate about it. I mean no disrespect to you and in no way judge you as a person for believing the way you do. I apologize if I've offended you and wish you only the very best. God deals with each of us according to his will and for those of us who have come to know him it just makes it all the more important to share his love and truth to all those who are willing to hear.

Kristian Antonelli said...

your words, your drawings are trully inspiring..

Jared Bailey said...

Matt & Rob;
I'm glad the tone I wanted to use came across in my posts. It could of gone downhill fast, but I think we kept it civilized. Thanks for the fun discussion.

I find it interesting that you believe in "micro-evolution". I guess I use DNA evidence to make the leap from micro to neo. We are 98% ape or are the 98% human? :) It'd be nice to see how things happend on a geological time scale, just because I can't see an island rise out of the sea and then disappear doesn't mean errosion doesn't exist. I guess it's all just a matter of faith, I've got mine and you've got yours. Thanks for the fun discussion.

You're right I do have some faith, just not the big kind. I do think that if there is a God then he'll understand why I believe the way I do. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

As far as spacing in animation goes I should maybe explain my predicament. I'm a game animator and I've recently changed they way I animate from a layered approach to a more pose to pose approach and I'm having some growing pains. The layered method worked for a while, but I often found that my initial poses would often get watered down or the timing would shift significantly as I worked from the hips out. I decided to switch to a more pose to pose method of animating and man does it feel great! Different but great. It's hard to explain but, I really feel like I'm an animator. I use to spend so much time in the graph editor and now I don't touch it until the very end. It's great but, there is just one problem. My spacing isn't working very well. I keep on falling into the trap of doing too much on too few frames. I'm having trouble having parts of the body lead and follow. Growing pains. I just haven't got my work flow, well, worked out. So it'd be great to see how you do things since what the way I'm working now seems more 2D.

Matt Williames said...

Heya Jared, one last thing i suppose before we end this discussion. I would just strongly encourage you to consider what God has to say about lack of Faith. He is very clear that without faith it is impossible to know Him and thus we stand condemned. Faith that we are sinners, God cannot stand sin because He is Holy and sin must be punished (think of a judge in a court), we had no hope of being reconciled to Him through works thus disabling our ability to be forgiven. So He, gracious became flesh in a man named Jesus, offered himself as a sacrifice for our sins by dying on the cross, he paid the penalty of sin and death and rose again on the third day conquering death for all who believe. All you have to do is repent from your sin, and take faith in Jesus as your Saviour. It's so simple, and eternity is far too important to just hope things work out OK.
Again I've enjoyed this conversation with you Jared, i hope you'll keep coming back to the blog!! I'll do a tutorial soon on pose to pose stuff!

Brian said...

hey matt. your faith is inspiring. and you handled a lot of different views very well. love the animation test. I'm learning animation and your blog is very helpful and informative. thanks.

GARY LOCKE said...


russianspy437 said...

hey im just curious, what do you useto sketch? One of themlooks like its done with sharpie

disa said...