Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Happy Holidays!

I'll be signing off for the moment as I concentrate on holiday stuff (and impending deadlines), but before I go, here are this year's virtual greeting cards. As per last year, I did two versions, one of which has a Chinese New Year theme to welcome in the Year of the Tiger. If you didn't get one via post or e-mail, Julie and I hereby wish you all the best!

And for more holiday cheer, don't forget to check out ArtOrder's Krampus Challenge!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

360 Minute Monster

Update: And here are the results of ArtOrder's Krampus Challenge, with a whopping 67 different interpretations of this festive fiend!

This one's a special holiday monster, created for the seasonal Krampus Challenge on Jon Schindehette's ArtOrder blog. For the occasion, I did an actual pencil drawing and a detailed color painting rather than the usual 60-minute quick sketch, so let's call this a 360 Minute Monster.

This is, of course, the Krampus, a classic Christmas character who's well known in Germany. I have a lovely book of weird vintage Christmas cards called Christmas Curiosities, which devotes an entire chapter to this delightful fellow, and my rendition stays pretty close to the traditional Krampii showcased in the book: He has a lolling tongue, at least one cloven foot, cuffs and chains, and a basket for carrying away wicked little children. To complete the effect, here's a Christmas card version with a cheery "Greetings from Krampus" inscription.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Weekly Workshop IX

The end, for now! Here are some drawings from the final alumni workshop of the season. Thanks to Eric for hosting these, and to all our models, and to Ed and Josh and Mike and everyone else who dragged themselves out on Wednesday nights to keep me company.

First, the customary five-minute sketches.

Tens and twenties. These represent the last gasp of the ink cartridge in my gray brushpen.

And then one last stab at finger-painting on the iPod Touch. Clearly I need a lot more practice before I get the hang of this, but I'll share my feeble efforts with you anyway. Until we meet again, I hope you'll all remember me by my good drawings!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Return of the Sixty Minute Monsters

Here's a must-see for fans of screaming, tentacled madness: An H.P. Lovecraft art tribute on Tor.com. Together with the ongoing Hurakan challenge on Jon Schindehette's ArtOrder blog, it got me thinking about giant monster gods, and so I decided to set aside an hour to reviving my old Sixty Minute Monster series.

So here's my take on the ever-popular monster god Cthulhu. Usually he's depicted as all eyes and no mouth, but I thought it might be creepier the other way around. My strongest recollection from the classic Lovecraft story is that, for all the intimidating PR, Cthulhu actually turns out to be made out of some kind of gooshy ectoplasm and the puny human characters are able to escape by driving their steamboat right through him. Kind of like a sea jelly, perhaps.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Weekly Workshop Extra

While I'm posting workshop drawings, here are a bunch from the all-day drawing event that the lovely folks from the Academy's Fine Arts department hosted last Saturday. It was a bit of a challenge applying the technique I've been using for figure studies to what were essentially all-white and all-black costumes:

The cockatoo's name is Chinook, and he pretty much stole the show. He also appears in the next set:

And then we ate cake.

Was there cross-dressing? Oh yes, there was cross-dressing.

Weekly Workshop VII

We're reaching the end of the workshop season, so there'll only be a couple more of these posts. But if nothing else, they've certainly given me plenty of post-ready blog content!

This week's wrinkle is that all my beloved brush pens ran out of ink, so I was forced to bring in a gray brush pen as a backup. I think I actually like the gray ink better, so naturally I've gone and used that one up as well. C'est la art supplies. Let's see some five and ten minute sketches...

Now a couple of twenties. I tried softening my trusty Liquid Paper correction pen with some white pencil, and I think it's working pretty well.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Weekly Workshop VI

Time for me to post a selection from last week's Wednesday night alumni workshop! One of the nice things about going to these workshops is checking in with my former fellow students, and you too can share the magic by checking out the latest workshop sketches from fine folks like Josh and Mike. (And here's some stuff by Mónico and Ben from workshops I wasn't at, boo hoo.)

Speaking of workshoppery, I saw a notice about an event that may interest other Academites and alumnoids. According to the flyer: This Saturday, December 5, there's an "all day drawing event" with models and costumes and whatnot at the Academy of Art's 701 Chestnut building. Fond as I am of marathon drawing exercises, there's no way I can pass up an event that threatens to run from 10 AM to 10 PM.

Anyways, onward to the past! Last week's workshop got off to a bit of a slow start, as I was woefully undercaffeinated. Once that problem had been solved, we did a run of jazzy two-minute sketches with which I'm rather pleased.

These ten minute poses came out okay as well:

The twenty's not so good, but I'll share my shame with you and swear to do better tomorrow.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

When Punch Attacks!

Whoo, just got a mention in the Academy of Art Newsfeed! If you've come here looking for my 24 Hour Comic, here are the links:

Commedia Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Just did these as samples for an illustration job posting. No idea if it's what the client was looking for, but it does the soul good to draw baby tapirs.

Aaaand putting them all together...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Weekly Workshop V

Coming soon, stuff that's not just workshop drawings! But first, some more workshop drawings.

Let's start with a few five minute sketches. Eric, our workshop meister, revealed his inner nerd by suggesting some superhero poses.

Now some tens and twenties. I think I'm getting the hang of working on toned paper again; thank goodness for those Liquid Paper correction pens.

And one more supervillain pose for the road.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Weekly Workshop IV

Busy busy busy, but here's some more workshoppery. Five minute sketches first:

Now here's me getting all Josh Clements, with the toned paper:

And an iPod sketch. Wowzers, check out me using the whole value range!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Weekly Workshop III

The title is a lie, since I haven't been able to get to the Wednesday night alumni workshop in almost a month. Great model, though - older folks have so much character!

First, some five minute poses...

These were all sports-themed, which reminds me of Kazu Sano's figure painting class, where we were supposed to turn the model into a full-fledged illustration. Maybe the second or third week, I painted up the model as a king from a deck of playing cards, with props and everything. Kazu stands there, scratching his head, and then asks "Okay, but why is he naked?"

The easy answer, of course, is "Because the model's naked," but that's not really narratively satisfying. So where these poses are concerned, let's just assume we're dealing with an athletic nudist. Ten minute poses are up next!

And finally, the return of iPod sketching. I think I'm getting the hang of the tools, now to work on the value and temperature range...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Halloween Flyer

As you can see, the flyer for this year's Halloween movie party is a big step up in production values from last year. If any readers are interested in swinging by, let me know and I'll get you our address and contact info!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Weekly Workshop II

Winding up a week of non-stop posting, here's a selection from this week's Wednesday night alumni workshop. First, a few five minute sketches...

Then ten minutes...

And for the twenty minute poses, I tried something a little different. These were drawn on an iPod Touch (which is basically an iPhone with no phone functions) using the Brushes app. As a plus, the Brushes app can also generate an animated stroke-by-stroke replay of your finger painting process, which really makes it look like you knew what you were doing!

24 Hour Comic: Commedia Part 4

Finally, here's the dramatic conclusion and epilogue. This part was easy and painless, and I had it all wrapped up by 11:30 AM. Success! Challenge accomplished!

Part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

24 Hour Comic: Commedia Part 3

And this is where I rolled out my secret plan for hitting the 24-pages-in-24-hours target: Lots of crazy splash pages. It didn't hurt that these were the crazy setpiece scenes I'd been looking forward to throughout the whole ordeal.

So here comes the penultimate installment! Part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 4 here.