Friday, December 5, 2008


Here's the latest ballpoint. I left this one sketchy, partially because I like the life and energy visible sketch lines give to a drawing. Also, I have a lot of other projects going on right now and not much time to complete them all. This character isn't really based on anyone, but I think he looks a little like a fat Hercule Poirot.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

New Illustration!

This illustration is actually a re-do. It comes from a children's book I wrote and illustrated (along with a friend of mine, designer Nick Hopkins) several years ago. My goal is to eventually compile around 12 illustrations from various book ideas (along with character development sketches) to create a booklet I can shop to different publishers. As for the illustration itself, I love the way it turned out. I may have mentioned this before, but the quality difference between an illustration done under time constraints as opposed to one without is quite astounding. My control is getting better. I'm planning on focusing more on lighting, depth, and textures in upcoming illustrations. I think this one is a good start.

Character Concepts

More character concepts for "Saturday".

Character concepts for "Saturday"

These are characters I've developed over the past year or so for a book tentatively entitled "Saturday". If I had my druthers, I would shelve freelance work and focus entirely on this project. Unfortunately, the utilities providers and my landlord require legal tender for their services. As such, the freelance work must continue for the foreseeable future and my personal projects must take a secondary role.

Comic concept art

Here are a few character concepts for a strip cartoon I'm developing called "Dawn of the Working Dead". It's mostly about work. And zombies.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


When I don't feel I have the time to fully commit myself to a long term project (or other elements inhibit my ability to do so such as space or access to materials and supplies), I like to work on drawings of lesser commitment. Ballpoint is mobile, requires only one tool (excluding the sketchbook itself) and if I screw it up, I can tear it in half and not feel bad about it. This piece was done while flying to/from Phoenix. Drawings like this afford me the opportunity to explore ideas without a commercial application (I've been told recently my natural style is very dark and would scare off potential clients). This drawing, I believe, fits neatly into that category. It's based on a man I saw eating in a Shari's restaurant.

Latest Boise Weekly

Here's the most recent Boise Weekly illustration. This is a great example of ridiculous work ethic. I spent four full days on this illustration and was paid the same amount as would have had I spent an hour. I have mentioned before the advice I once received from another professional, which is to treat every project with the same deference. However, there comes a point (particularly when attempting to run a profitable business) that one must draw the line (heh heh..."draw the line"...heh heh). That aside, I love the way this illustration turned out and have no regrets on the time I committed. The story deals with sprawl in Boise, Idaho and the amount of pollution said sprawl creates. This piece was done entirely by hand (as opposed to copying the elements and resizing them to create the perspective) as I was out of town and did not have access to Photoshop.

Sleigh Swap Final

Well, the revised lettering did not go over as I had hoped. It was still, in the client's opinion, too stylized. I re-drew the lettering. Personally, I don't think this version has as much personality, but ultimately the decision isn't mine to make. I'm still satisfied with the result and this piece will likely make it into the advertising/promotional section of my portfolio. This project has also turned out to be a textbook example of the start to finish process of an illustration commission (development and execution of an idea).

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Second Sleigh Swap Concept

Ok, here's the revised version of the sleigh swap promotional piece. I'm not as happy with it as the first initial (is there irony in writing "second initial"?). The first was too complicated for the client, though, so thems the breaks. Hopefully this one will be approved. Otherwise, the piece will have to be completely redrawn. The condition of the bristol is, at this point, less than ideal. Erasing, while picking up most of the actual graphite, leaves the gouges created by the pencils. And, truth be told, I'm a bit of a perfectionist.

Initial Sleigh Swap Drawing

Here's a bad reproduction of the initial drawing for the Sleigh Swap promotional project (I'm in Phoenix right now, which accounts for the infrequency of my posts and the digital photo rather than a good, clean scan). I was satisfied with the lettering (done painstakingly by hand) and the composition. Unfortunately, it was not to be. Neither the lettering nor the layout was to the client's satisfaction, so I'll be re-doing the lion's share of this one. C'est la vie.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Concepts Continued

New Concept Drawings

Here are several concept drawings for a new commission (it's a charity event sponsored by a car dealership). Admittedly, I have a problem with posting concept drawings. By their nature, they have to be rough given the amount of time (or lack thereof) in which they get turned out. They're also about the exploration of ideas rather than finished products. That having been said, I'm a real perfectionist and would prefer only to post polished, completed illustrations. Ce la vie.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Jazz Fest Drawings

A few years ago I was commissioned to draw a few instruments for a music festival program here in Moscow. I was searching through some old files today and I happened across these, so I thought I'd post them.

Monument Renderings

These are a few graphite drawings of monument styles for a stone finishing company in Chicago.

Recent Commission

This piece was commissioned by a Diabetes treatment center in Boise, Idaho. Although it was a fairly fast turnaround time (three or four days), this is a good example of a seamless commission. The clients were a pleasure to work with (they had pretty thoroughly thought out their idea before contacting me and we were able to communicate well to bring their idea to fruition without having to make too many alterations), I had a great time drawing it, and they seemed very happy with the result.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Landscape Concepts Continued

And here are the rest...

Landscape Concepts

Here are eight very fast mock ups (graphite and watercolor) for a possible upcoming landscape commission. The colors are based on the fact that the commission will eventually be rendered with copper paint (oxidized and non-oxidized). These are mostly for layout purposes.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Design Work

For the last several days, I've been designing logos to include in a mailer for a sculpture studio (the sculpture studio is my steady income source). Because I'm an illustrator, I'm somewhat insecure about my abilities to design (these are actually my first attempts at logo work). I wonder whether or not my design makes professional designers wince. Nonetheless, I think these pieces will do what they need to do.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

More Promotional Work

Though the myriad of posts pertaining to self-promotional materials and illustrations might seem evidence to the contrary, I don't really like talking about myself all that often. Self promotion embarrasses me. On the other hand, being self-deprecating and humble doesn't sell illustrations, so I'm not left with too many alternatives. With that caveat, here's the latest in a string of self-aggrandizing pieces. The illustration itself was fairly straightforward, but combining the elements together was an exercise in Photoshop layers and patience. In the end, though, I'm happy with the way it turned out. And isn't that the REAL truth? The answer, is no.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Gimme five bees for a quarter, you'd say...

Here's the last of the concepts for the cowboy mascot (which seems like it should have two 't's on the end of it). I should mention that, when you upload images into posts, it puts the images uploaded last on TOP of the post, because...uh...why wouldn't you do it that way? So the first concept drawing (above post) is actually the last one you'd see scrolling down the page. Got all that? Freaking technology. Why, when I was a kid we just taped pictures to the fridge. That was the first blog, y'hear? None o' this fancy interweb doin's. And ANOTHER thing......