Sunday, May 25, 2014

So John Kerry, Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin walk into a square...

...and nothing funny whatsoever happened.


Here's the latest for  It deals with the upcoming vote in Ukraine.  Ukraine has been the setting for some fairly intense turmoil as of late, and the most recent comic for deals with the potential ramifications on global financial markets subsequent to the upcoming vote.

I was asked by the crew at to draw Barack Obama, John Kerry and Vladimir Putin looking on as a Ukrainian citizen places a ballot into a ballot box.  The background was to be a smoke-filled Maidan Square.

Here's the sketch:

The past two comics for have featured non-human elements as the focal point (a rocket in one and a balloon in the other).  I was happy to have the variety, but I worried a little that I might be somewhat rusty upon returning to drawing people again.

And boy, howdy, was I.  I ended up drawing Obama, Kerry, Putin, the Ukrainian man, and then doubling back to re-draw Obama because my first attempt was awful.  This is where I would include that sketch, but it was so bad that all knowledge of its existence has been disavowed.

Anyway, this comic was a toughie, but I did get to draw John Kerry for the first time.  That was pretty fun.  I'm not sure I did a great job, but it was fun nonetheless.

Not a bad comic, IMHO (as the kids say these days).


Graphs, and nothing but the graphs, so help me graphs.

No false advertising here.  I take those subject lines pretty seriously and I'm not about to perjure myself.  No siree.

These graphs were from a relatively small job for Decagon last week.


Sunday, May 18, 2014

Rocket (Wo)Man


Here's the latest comic for  This one has to do with the record high of the S&P 500.  I was asked by the crew at to draw a rocket/space ship flying up into space with Janet Yellen at the helm.  I was also asked to include meteors/debris and the number "1,900" spelled out in stars (the S&P broke 1,900 this week).

Here's the sketch:

And here's the final:


Sunday, May 11, 2014

What, me worry?

Here are two versions of a sensor illustration I did for Decagon this week (which is to say last week).  The sensor is called the GS1.

Q: Why are there two versions, Noah?

A: Well, I'm glad you asked.  It's because I'm an idiot.  I've been doing sensor illustrations for Decagon for long enough that I assumed I didn't have to send a proof over.  You know that old saying about why we don't assume?  Because it makes an @$$ out of Noah.

Nice-looking, right?  Too bad it's not what they wanted.  The illustration needed to show the embossed label on the back of the sensor (there are a number of sensors in the Decagon line that look similar to this one and the name is important for distinction purposes).

So here was version two:

This one was what they wanted.  I also gave it to them at a discount of 100%.  See, sometimes I get hungry and I eat the cost of my own stupidity.


Up, Up and Away...

In my beautiful, my beautiful baloooooooooon!


Here's the most recent cartoon for  This week's comic deals with the slipping value of the Nasdaq and the possible ramifications thereof.  The idea was (as always) courtesy of the team at (with drawing and color commentary by yours truly).




And whatever you do, don't click here.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

The True Dry: Technically Fun


Several weeks ago, I was asked by Decagon Devices to do a drawing of one of their new instruments: The True Dry.

The True Dry is an instrument that measures the moisture content of various samples (soil, food products, plastics, etc.) using controlled contact drying.  In a nutshell (at least, according to my illustrator's understanding), that means the True Dry instrument uses heated and dessicated air to dry samples in a controlled environment.  It allows for faster, more accurate sample measurements.  It can also measure pretty much any kind of sample.  Like all Decagon products, it's fast, accurate, and easy to use.

Here's the layout sketch:

I've worked with Decagon for a number of years (I think since around 2005).  I've drawn a plethora of instruments and devices for them over that period of time.  This one is by far the most complex (in terms of the illustration itself; I can't speak to whether or not it's the most complex instrument they make, though I suspect it would be high on the list).

There are a number of relatively complex physical features to the True Dry: The sample tray, the hinges, the curves of the casing, multiple screen options, the layered metal rings of the lid, multiple surface materials.  The list goes on.  Now, take all of those complex elements and draw them in multiple point perspective.  Also, make it interesting.

Here's the craziest part: This was so much fun.  I love this kind of illustration.  But I also love a challenge, and this one challenged just about every ability I have as an illustrator.  This was a project I could really sink my teeth into.

Here's the final version:

I'm proud of this one.  It was hard work and challenging on a number of levels.  I think this turned out to be one of the best illustrations I've done for Decagon.  This one's going in the portfolio.


Deflation Extermination


Here's the latest comic for  This week's comic deals with Mario Draghi's attempts to combat deflation in the European Union (the bugs represent deflation).  Here's the sketch:

The idea, as always, was thought up by the team at  This was the first comic after a two-week hiatus from the financial comics.  That being the case, I felt a little rusty getting back into the swing of things.  I've been doing a lot of technical illustration lately, so switching gears into something so different felt a little odd.

But ultimately, I think it turned out well enough.

What I like DON'T like about the drawing: The office is a bit bland, Draghi's face could have been more expressive (he's not really reacting to what he's doing), and one of his eyes is a bit wonky.

What I LIKE about it: The composition.  I drew the clock, the lamp, and the chair in a way that I hoped would lead the viewer's eye from the upper left of the comic down to the focus of the comic.  I also think Draghi's likeness (eye wonkiness notwithstanding) turned out pretty well, particularly considering I haven't done a caricature in a couple of weeks.


Friday, May 2, 2014