10 December 2012

Krampus demon...person

working on another piece for illustration before the end of the semester which is next wednesday.  eeeegads!

needs serious polish but this is a WIP.

Updated 12/12/12 woooooooooooooo I just noticed the date.  spooooooky.  eh.

03 December 2012


I finished it.  I neglected it for awhile, only working on it here and there.  I really like the way it turned out.  There are some areas that I simply didn't know how to work, but I think those things will be learned in time.

I have 2 more to do in 2 weeks.  yikes.

19 November 2012

Santa Concept WIP

A billion trillion Santa Clauses have been drawn and painted, and so mine won't be anything special except that I did it, of course.  haha.  I haven't done a santa in a lot of years I don't think.  I could
be wrong.

anyway I read an excerpt of Krampus the Yule Lord by Brom, and Santa had a muscular chest and arms, and I thought that I would do a character concept based on that.  So far it is pretty fun.  I plan on doing 2 other pieces inspired by the excerpt that I read.  Im not sure how true I will stay to what I read, but that doesn't really matter.  It will correlate.


I got excited so I did some more today instead of working on other projects that I should have been working on.  I may put a hat on him similar to this, but I haven't decided yet.  I also made his chest larger and stomach rounder.  I'm starting to get excited about the direction this is going.


12 November 2012

Sargent study

I've been in the worst rut this semester.  I'm not going to complain about it here.  Anyway, after plenty of tantrums I decided to just sit and do some studies, and finished them up with a digital painting of one of John Singer Sargent's paintings "A Spanish Woman".

I couldn't dream of doing it justice, but for my own education it was a good exercise.  It really helped me understand color a lot, as it appears he did it in mainly 2 colors.  at least the digital image if his work was about 2 colors.

I took plenty of liberties, and started off with a different color for the background.  I like his background better, obviously.  gah.  now that it is up here in front of me Im seeing some really obvious issues!

it's just a study...

29 October 2012

Influence update

UPDATE: 10 November

the show was a big success!  we had an estimated 320 people come Friday night to see our work!  I will make a new post showing the final piece when the show is finally done.

I had forsaken this part of the work to focus on the side panels, but I need to get this done this week.  I spent about 5.5 hours working on this today, and got a ton done!  Im liking this so far.

I tried to put them together how they will be on the wall but it isn't cooperating very well.  I should have put them together in PS but oh well.  It's time for bed and frankly I'm tired of messing with
this tonight.

05 October 2012

influence - process shots

This semester has been a crazy crazy time.  Im taking a total of 19 credits and ended up losing 2.5 weeks due to kidney stones.  

My biggest challenge will be getting my edges soft and hard where they need to be.  That seems to be my biggest all time issue.

this will be a 3 panel piece about influence.

Update: 12 october
the above pic is a thumbnail of sorts to see how color would work with ideas I was having on how to treat the figures on the sides.  I had originally wanted an angels and demons theme, but one of the faculty on my committee thought it was too "trite".  I can appreciate that.  As an illustrator I sort of like trite sometimes.  Long story short I decided to revisit the angels and demons theme, but not in so trite a manner.  I chose to treat them in a way that would identify them or their motives with mood instead of traditional demon/angel conventions.  I'm still not sure how I want to treat the orbs, but I am getting there.  Also the middle still needs a lot of help especially in the background.  I just have 2 weeks left.  that is scary.  very very scary.  But I can do it.

16 September 2012

itouch portrait

I had some kidney stones blasted this weekend.  I guess it was about the size of a corn kernel.  it has been making me bleed since May, but I finally got it checked out and resolved.  I'm on lots of pain meds and stuff to help me pass the particles.  

Anyway,  I was laying there wanting to do some painting.  I decided to borrow my wife's itouch and paint this using a stylus.  I used a TON of layers.  only 4 are allowed at a time, so I would flatten the image and the paint on a separate layer, lower the opacity of the layer, and rinse and repeat.  It took a very long time, but it was an interesting process.  this is a little bit smaller than how i saw it on the screen.  Of course I could zoom in and stuff.  

I did it as a thumbnail for a part of my exhibition show this fall.  

Im not really sure why but I just really really like this. 

30 August 2012

I'Ecorché app!

I don't have an iPad or tablet of any kind.  yet.  I will tho.  and when I do one of my first purchases will be This awesome app.

23 August 2012

page o portraits

So I signed up to get emails from this artist named.  Stan Prokopenko he had some short tutorials and explanations on a number of things.  he seemed to know a lot, and was good at explaining things.  

recently, he made a couple of movies based on Andrew Loomis' figure drawing books.  He did an excellent job putting the video together and it was SUPER inspirational.  At the end he said, "go do it a hundred times"  so I started.  in my larger sketchbook I got about 40 done.  some weren't full featured portraits, but some were. then I decided to move to my smaller sketchbook where I enjoy drawing more.  This is my 2 page spread of 21 faces done the Andrew Loomis method that was explained much easier by Stan.

Thanks, Stan.  I learned a lot and am learning more and more.  This could be a really amazing breakthrough for me.  I still have a lot of issues to work through as you can tell but some of these are just great.

I'm pretty excited.  I have 39 more to go.  I don't think they will all be as interesting as some 
of these though.

14 August 2012

Sketchbook: Barbarian

Update: 15 Aug.
I decided to put some acrylic to this.  I wanted to keep the colors simple, and do something interesting.  

I wanted to do a silly overblown helmet on a Barbarian.  The Barbarian mythos is one of my favorite.  Often they are shown wearing bones and helms adorned with things that they have killed. 

I enjoyed doing the asymmetrical horns and such.  I need to work on symmetry of the face and body more, but this was a lot of fun.  I may paint it in acrylic washes.  we will see I guess.

11 August 2012

Illustration Friday - Freeze

Well, I had wanted to do an illustration every friday for this Illustration Friday website, but I failed.  miserably.  but hey, I was doing other stuff!

anyway, Friday was yesterday and I started this, and then finished it up today.  I didn't want to spend a lot of time on it, since it is a one day thing.  Really, I should constrain myself to a couple hours at most. I get carried away

BUT I stopped myself short of adding values and textures like I would have done if it were for class or a different project.

I should draw some cages down below with humans in them.  but you get the idea...

08 August 2012

sketchbook -

A friend told me that another friend who I met through another friend had surgery on his neck...something about a metal plate.  I needed something to do in my sketchbook so I used him

I sorta need to go easier on the watercolor pencils with this sketchbook because it turns the surface of the paper to pulp.  and it doesn't mix well at that point.

ah well, this was fun anyway.

02 August 2012

Sketchbook post: Julie Newmar...sorta

Pencil, ink wash, watercolor pencil.

I did this from a b/w photo of Julie Newmar.  I actually had my sketchbook at a different angle when i drew it so this pic looks like she is leaned over more than she really is.  the colors are more vibrant here than the actual one as well.

it doesn't really look like her, but...whatever :)

28 July 2012

sketchbook: Gir-eleph-ion...?

This was a fun one.  I basically had a list of creatures, rolled a dice 3 times and created a creature out of 3 others.

good exercise.

26 July 2012


Some more acrylic, this time mostly washes.  I used a ground that was black/white/yellow, and then put in my highlights, then a skin tone wash, then more highlights, and more colors, then highlights, etc.  

23 July 2012

A sketchbook post

A few other portraits.  I think the charcoal one is one of my better charcoal works.  I was pretty happy with it.  the acrylic was fun as I tried to stay super loose.  Im beginning to see where I go wrong in portraits, and I'm pretty excited for these realization and learning experiences.  hopefully I can keep them in mind as I do others in the future!  everything about the face is a challenge!

16 July 2012

sketchbook post!

I just wanted to post a couple sketchbook pages.  I am on a quest to do 100 portraits.  so this one is of a guy on google images that I thought would be cool to do because of the textures of his beard.

acrylic ground and white charcoal

 this one was me trying to figure out what to draw.  I was inspired by my messy shelves

watercolor pencils and ballpoint pen

06 July 2012

Suspend (Illustration Friday)

Here is this week's illustration.  I sort of spent all day on it off and on.  oops.  I didn't intend to, i was just learning lots of stuff and got carried away.

I suppose that is good for me.  I really like the way this turned out.  I used a really limited pallet that I chose from a gamut mask I created.  I think it worked pretty well! yay!

I titled it "Diving for Cookies"  because who wouldn't?

29 June 2012

illustration friday -feet

I found a website called Illustration friday when I very first started this blog.  Every Friday they post a word or phrase that someone else submits, and challenge you to come up with a picture to represent that.

I am going to attempt to do one every friday.  It was always my intention but I never did.  Today is my first one, and the word was "refresh"

since It is a quick drawing I think this will be good for me to not get carried away in thinking about something too much.


21 June 2012

Abominable snow man (WIP)

I decided to do something digital since it has been awhile.  I thought that it would be fun to create a unique version of the abominable snowman.  something that I hadn't seen before.

So I made him look like a tree.  perfect camouflage!  maybe too perfect.

I'm most interested in color gamut theory at this point.  That's actually the reason I even began this project in the first place.  I'm trying to wrap my head around it!

the  machine is not from reference but it will be redone.  I wanted to see how a neutral gray could look like yellow, so I was trying to achieve that.

anyway, here is a process shot.  more to come.

17 June 2012

Sketchbook pages

I haven't been doing elaborate projects lately, but I have been fairly diligent in working in my sketchbook and making an effort to expand my vocabulary with different mediums and subjects.  every day I try an exercise that presents me with projects that force me to try new things, or do things that I should be doing anyway but am just to unmotivated.

so here are some pages that I thought were fun, anyway.

One of the first few days I took a trip to the zoo and it was somewhat of a fiasco, so I didn't even bother posting those pages, but this watercolor was a sketch I did upon returning home, defeated. and the second page is a couple of things I drew from images on the internet

Sketched a lion and then did a color overlay in PS.  then placed a halftone in the background

left to right, pen and watercolor, 50% grey marker and acrylic (can't really see the marker but it worked out really cool as I went), and pen and Nupastel.  I had numbered 8 different mediums, and asked my wife to choose 2 numbers from 1-8, and then I used those 2.

This one was interesting because I just took random brush strokes and created creatures from interesting forms that I saw in them

12 May 2012

Gamut Masking - The color wheel

Im not a good color theorist.  Any time I place colors or color schemes it is a complete guess and a crap shoot.  sometimes I feel successful at it, others not.  Either way, I'm not sure what I am doing.  One thing that I would like to explore and become more familiar at is color

James Gurney has invented a gamut masking technique that is wonderful, and one that I want to try and learn

Richard Robinson took Gurney's idea and put it into an online digital form which is amazing.

part one
part two
part three

and then there are other earlier posts

color constancy
and his 2008 posts on color masking, part one and part two

Thanks to the Muddy Colors blog for digging these up!


also: a post on the color of shadows on a white building here

09 May 2012

win some, lose some

Illustration class summary

Still trying to figure out edge quality

Vanquisher of Bushes
This was the most frustrating of all.  this acrylic wash business is tough.  I repainted the bush 3 or 4 times and part of me thinks that it is worse now than ever.  The pose of the boy is better than before and the bird looks good.  this scan is sort of bad haha.

This was a fun one.  I think social media is a silly thing.  On one hand, it can be really useful.  On the other it is just a way to crush our hopes in humanity.

the blue birds represent twitter, and the brick wall behind them is Facebook.  Dumpty has got egg on his face.  I went on Facebook and online and found silly, ridiculous, pointless, or plain stupid things people post on their walls or twitter.  I wanted to make the letters vertical like that to suggest bird pooping down the wall.  The idea is pretty hilarious since that is basically what it amounts to most of the time.


Our second to last project in illustration looked at artists like Kara Walker.  We used silhouettes to tell a story or idea(s).

I love silhouettes because as an illustrator, they are King.  

Anyway, I think that there is a lot of irony in society about the idea of freedom.  I remember being an analogy about kites, and how if you cut their strings while they are flying they will simply fall to the ground.  I think there was a story about a kite that wanted to fly higher and that is what happened.

So placing human beings in that scenario was interesting to me.  How often do we feel restricted by laws, rules, religion, etc?  we want to be free and autonomous but we foolishly believe that rejecting the things that set boundaries for our own good with make us free.  

These are pictures that my instructor took of them in the hallway at BSU.  we had limited space, and it was pretty cramped, but it ended working out ok.  I rather liked how it turned out.

you can't see it well in these pictures, but 2 of the people on the cliff are holding scissors :)


For our final assignment in drawing II we were exploring movement.  We looked at artists such as William Kentridge and Michel Ocelot, among others.  I decided to try my hand at the charcoal method.  It was something I was sort of familiar with, having used it exclusively in figure drawing.

This project presented numerous challenges.  I hadn't done an animation before, so I didn't really know how many drawings you had to do to make a smooth transition.  My life drawing class helped considerably, but I am obviously far from a comfortable working knowledge.  i have 176 individual drawings in the movie.  I thought it was closer to 200.  I think I cut some out.  I looped some of the drawings (in iMovie) so it ended up being about 250 frames.

I didn't get much feedback for it.  I don't think many found it that interesting.  I guess that is ok.  It really does lack content and meaning.  It's pretty short as well.

Overall I'm ok with it.  I learned a lot about what works and what doesn't.

02 April 2012

Hallway finished

A couple of months ago I posted some sketches of a larger charcoal project that I was working on at the time.  I finally got a pic of the final product.  It is about 50 x 42 inches, which is by far the largest format i have ever done.  I think it turned out pretty well.

here I'll post the original sketches as well.  It changed quite a bit!  which is always fun.

15 March 2012

Vanquisher of EVIL...Bushes, acrylic colors process

Im going to journal this acrylic journey.  Im really trying to loosen up as well as understand how Bill Carmen has been pleading with me to treat painting, both digitally and traditionally.  starting loose, and building layers.  Ive done one other painting, but i think this one will be vastly better than the last (sorry, Dad)

I love the process of exploration.  Bill always gets so passionate about finding beautiful and unexpected textures as he paints, and I am finding that as well.

I'll keep updating this post with process shots as I go.

Updated: 16 March

Still having fun.  I need to figure out how to achieve smoother strokes and transitions.  
maybe it's a patience thing...

Updated: 28 March

Updated 31 March
The changes probably seem small.  But I'm still slow at this process.  Im having fun tho, and learning.  so I guess that is ok.  Working on the pile of leaves and then tweaking a few things here and there, and then hopefully I will be done.  I'm ready to be :)
aaaand as an update, I'm not liking how dark it became.  /sigh.  not sure how to bring that back without losing ...something.

13 March 2012

vanquisher of evil...Bushes final sketch

I left this project to work on others in various classes.  also I'm scared to do acrylics again, lol

I'm pretty happy with the composition now, so hopefully I can make this gleam by painting it well.

11 March 2012

Life drawing collage

In life drawing we had to draw notes of 16 different poses and use at least 6 of them in a large scale drawing.  It ended up that we had to pretty much do the actual drawings at home.  My sketches weren't specific enough as to lighting so I had to make that up.  I treated it with amber shellac, and the color was added in PS to see what i would do to it next.  Im still exploring but this is one possibility

07 March 2012


This is another project I'm working on in my Illustration class

Its a work in progress shot, so nothing super exciting yet.  working with perspective is SUPER time consuming, but fun.

Basically it is 2 sentinels carved from on-site rock structures that stand next to the path that leads to the castle.  the castle and path will be on a sheer cliff so the sentinels, or the rocks that they are carved from, reach far below.  I'm excited to start painting it

Updated 8 March:
A couple of process shots.  this is tougher than I thought.  Im trying not to be fussy, but I'm painting over the same stuff over and over because I don't know hot to treat this.  its a fun process, but...grrr.

Update 10 March
Im reworking the arms a bit because they were too long and less interesting.  now there is more overlap.
Ill have to figure out how to add some colors in to make this pop more.  

Updated 12 March

Im struggling with my brush strokes, and unsure how to paint it basically.  I worked on the castle.  I did it very loosely, as I wasn't sure if I would keep it.  It was basically an exploration of "materials".
I like the colors, but it just feels...bleh.

Updated 16 March

Updated 19 March

updated 31 March
I've done a bunch of work on this and some of it I like a lot and others I feel hopelessly bound to mistakes or inability.  I guess that is just part of the journey.  It is still a WIP.  here it is so far tho.