Images From Around this Blog!

30 May 2007

End of May Miscellany

There'll be a slight delay before the next set of images gets posted. Meanwhile, I'll take this opportunity to welcome all the new visitors who have come to this blog in the past month. I hope you find something you like, and that my efforts provide some enjoyment. As always, feel free to leave a comment or email me with critiques or words of encouragement.
I'd especially like to say a big "Thanks!" to Ian McDonald, who has guided a lot of people my way from his post in "The Rothland Tribune" at Bruno the Bandit. If you're not one of the people who's come here from that site, you should check it out; it's one of the finer webcomics out there, and has been for quite some time.
Since I started selling sketches at the beginning of the month, I've had several side projects come rolling in, which means that what I laughingly call "spare time" is rapidly being eaten up. However, I plan to keep on doing this as far as time allows, so if you've been on the fence about getting a drawing done, now's the time to do it before the demands of work get too heavy. I've enjoyed the concepts people have given me to illustrate so far, and would like to do more of them, so don't be shy about putting me to work!
That's it for now. Next time, I'm going to try to get some of my tattoo flash art online, as soon as I select a few good pieces.

29 May 2007

Air On My Shorts!

The highly enjoyable podcast "Air Out My Shorts" has seen fit to read another one of my short stories (the first was in Episode 39, if you want to check their archives). Click below to hear them "read" my latest offering. (Warning: Not safe for children, or humorless lesbians and zombies):

Episode 80: 10 Slot Colostomy Bag

22 May 2007

Painterly Aspirations

Concluding my recovery of images from my old Freeservers site, here's some color work that I thought was worth sharing. Most of what you'll see here was done in acrylic, although I sometimes use watercolor for backgrounds and will occasionally enhance with india ink.
First, here's an old favorite of mine, coming out of my love of horror films. The piece is titled "Devil's Cinema" and includes images taken from a variety of horror flicks, from the 1920's through to the 1980's. A free cookie to anyone who can name all the films (I doubt if I can after all this time).
This piece is 15" x 20" on illustration board and is currently for sale.



This portrait of "Evil Ernie" is a contest entry I did for a Chaos Comics trading card set a few years back. It didn't win, but I still think it was a fine piece of work.
The original of this is actually watercolor over a photocopy, mounted in black matboard and is currently for sale.




This unusual image is a color rough of a painting done for a friend of mine who's keen on vampires. The unusual shape of the piece was borne of my love of giving my framer fits.
The rough is colored pencil on bond paper and is currently for sale.



This piece was inspired by David Mack's "Kabuki" and Masamune Shirow's "Ghost in the Shell". It was done just for the fun of it.
This piece is ink and acrylics on illustration board at (approx.) 4" x 16" and is currently for sale.



The following is another color rough for a painting that was done for a wedding gift. It is based on Mozart's "Magic Flute" opera, and unabashedly steals designs from P. Craig Russell's graphic adaptation of that opera.
This piece is a composite of two sheets of 11 x 17 bond paper, painted in watercolor. The bird in flight is a separate piece of paper fixed to the main page. It is currently for sale.



Finally, just to show that I do paint things other than the fantastic or horrific, there's this country sampler piece. A friend challenged me to do a piece of art in this style, and this was the result. It's not quite as two-dimensional as most pieces in this style tend to be, but I think it came off well. On the original painting, that rusty colored border is gold ink and the double doors on the house open to reveal an Xmas message inside.
This is scanned from a color photocopy and I do not have the original art for sale. If anyone wants to donate the $10 it would cost me for shipping, I'll gladly package the copy and send it to them.



OK, so now that I've put all these images out there, it's time to get back to my scanner and my filing cabinet and get some of my other work online. Also, I've got several new projects in the works that I hope to be able to share soon.

18 May 2007

Art...What a Concept!

I know I promised some color work, but first I wanted to show off a commission piece that I just completed. Instead of simply relying on words to tell me what she wanted drawn, this person gave me a concept sketch from which to work, like so:



With a little bit of additional detail, I was able to turn this into the following:


Finally, with a few minutes on the mouse, I was able to give it a rough color job, so that we ended up with this:



See what you can do with just a little concept art? Sometimes if you can't describe something in great detail, it helps to be able to do a quick sketch.

OK, next time, color work. I promise. No, really.

16 May 2007

Take a Trip With Strip Trip!

First off, some news. I've gotten a good response to the sketches I'm selling (thanks to all contributors!) and have had some fun, interesting jobs to do. I'll be continuing to do them for the foreseeable future, unless somebody pays me a ridiculous amount of money to do otherwise.
The good news is that thanks to learning a bit about the costs of packaging and postage for these things, I am able to give you more for your money! Originally I was offering a 5 x 7 sketch for a minimum $10 donation. Since then, I've found that the easiest way to ship these things is in a standard comic polybag with a backing board, wrapped in a padded envelope. The cost for this is minimal and will hopefully help ensure the drawings arrive in good condition. The result of this is that it allows me to make the drawings comic book sized, about 7 x 10, which allows me to put in more detail and opens up some layout possibilities. This is one case where bigger really is better and size does matter! Click the link on the right to donate and order your custom sketch today! (Quantities are limited. Some restrictions may apply. Void where prohibited by law. Not valid in conjunction with any other offer. Contents may settle during shipping. >:^P)

Now, on to the art....
This time around, I'm really digging back into the past, back into my university days. In the late 80's, a close friend and I created a weekly cartoon strip for the university newspaper, The Muse. The strip was called "Newhope In Learning" and concerned the life of student Rick Newhope at "Memorihell University". Much inspired by the likes of Garry Trudeau, the strip had a lot of left-field humour, and was at times controversial. So much so that we eventually ended up withdrawing the strip because the editor (a now famous name that I won't sully further) censored our work in response to hate mail we'd received, and more that he expected.
After "Newhope" ended, I was a bit of a pariah at the newspaper, but I still had ideas I wanted to get published, and they were the only game in town that would run my kind of material. So, I created a new strip of my own that I took to submitting under a pen name, "Paladin". The new strip was called "Strip Trip", and was designed as a parody of other popular comic strips of the day. So secretive was I about who was doing the strip that I had a different person deliver the finished strip to the newspaper's office each week, and never used the same person twice. So for anyone who remembers or may have worked on The Muse at the time, yes, Strip Trip was by the same person that did "Newhope in Learning". Now you can sleep better, I'm sure.
Strip Trip, by all reports, was well-liked, although it did draw its own hate mail. It was certainly fun to do, as I enjoy aping the styles of other cartoonists when I get an excuse to do so, and I think I did a pretty decent job of it. What follows is a collection of the Strip Trip pages that I could find. I think I may be missing a couple, but this is most of the short run of that series. Click on any of the images for a larger view.

The first, introductory strip was a sort of collage of characters. Maybe you recognize someone?


Next up is one of my favorites, a Garfield parody that addresses the character's megalomaniac tendencies a little more openly than Jim Davis ever attempted....



From cats to dogs, we have "Marmamutt". Marmaduke is actually not a bad strip, for a family strip...but that didn't mean I was going to show it any mercy.



Of course, I couldn't NOT parody everyone's favorite strip, "Cathy". With all of these, I pictured the strip I did as a sort of "end result" of the characters' typical behaviours, and I think with this one, I got it dead on.



Another old favorite went under the parodical knife with this "Dennis the Menace" parody. I suspect a strip like this one might not fly in print anywhere in today's sensitive environment.



The following are the strips that drew one reader's ire, although I'm pretty sure the poison pen letter I received was itself meant to be humourous. "Calvin & Hobbes" was one of my favorite strips in its time, and remains one of the best of the daily strips....right up there with "Bloom County" and "The Far Side". I especially liked the strips where Watterson would draw Calvin and Suzy as grown-ups, and once conceived of a horror story in which a grown up Calvin was pursued and eventually killed by an imaginary tiger whom he had long since abandoned. These strips are as close as I ever came to actually visualizing that story.





Finally, there's this piece that was the last "comic" in the series. It was obviously done just after the death of Jack Kirby and was a response to the way so many artists were "reviving" his characters or his ideas at the time. What can I say...I'm not always know for my "balanced" viewpoints. The art was published in black and white, but later painted in watercolor for my own enjoyment.



By the way, the original of this last piece is available for sale if anyone would like to make an offer. The piece is 11 x 17 on bond paper, mounted on foamcore. It's in ink and watercolor and has held up remarkably well after all this time. I won't be letting this go for $10, but if you want to make a reasonable offer, drop me a line and we an work it out.

That's all for now. Next time, some color work and paintings.

11 May 2007

"Found" Art

Well, not so much found as "rescued". I figured it's time to recover some pieces from the portfolio I had at my Freeservers site. These are pieces I did for a variety of projects over the last few years, and while some of them make me cringe now, I think many of them still hold up.
I'll start off with my black and white work first, and later I'll post some comic strips and color work.
I should also add that I'll be selling some of the originals of these through this site; just look for the tag "for sale" in the categories to see what's currently available. If you see something that interests you, just send me an email and we can work out the details.

To start off, here's a piece I did for my older daughter's birth back in 1998. This was used for birth announcement cards, and there is an oil painting of this piece in her room now.


Next, here's a drawing of the Peter Pan statue in Bowring Park, St. John's, NL. Some friends and I attempted a series of postcards with drawings of local architectural highlights. Unfortunately, the project never took off, but some good work came out of it.



Next up are a pair of pieces I did for a calendar created as an Xmas gift for some friends. To this day, I still get ribbed about the fact that after all the work I put into this, I misspelled one of the key words wrong on the cover of the damn thing.
This one's David Mack's Kabuki character, a favorite of mine:



And this one is a rather racy drawing of Billy Tucci's Shi. There's just something about ninja chicks that works for me, I guess:



Unfortunately, none of these pieces is for sale, as I no longer own the originals. Still, maybe they'll give some readers ideas for custom pieces they'd like to have done for themselves.

That's all for this update. Next time, I'll post some comic strips from my university days.

10 May 2007

I'm In the Pictures!

Well, in webcomics anyway. I may be wrong (correct me if you like, Ian), but I'm pretty sure that's supposed to be me reading the sentence to Maledict in the latest strip at Bruno the Bandit.
This is not the first time I've appeared in Ian's strip, nor I'm sure will it be the last. It's always fun to see yourself "pop up" unexpectedly like this.
Ian's been kind enough to help out by linking to this blog from his site and send some prospective sketch buyers my way. I know from the stats that there's been a huge spike in traffic this week from a few other sites as well. While you're here, why not take a minute and stop in at Ian's site and enjoy some great webcomics. You might just discover a new favorite.

08 May 2007

Character Studies

Here's a few phone doodles with pretentions....

Sad to say, this one's less of a creation than it is a life drawing. You meet the most interesting people riding the bus...



I don't know who this guy is, but I'm pretty sure he doesn't like you...



Finally, who says haste makes waste? This was an experiment in speed coloring, drawn and colored in about 1 1/2 hours total time. A lot of time was saved by finding a nice rust texture and applying it to the main image, then layering a photo background over a dark yellow wash. I love it when a plan comes together.

07 May 2007

The Sweet Sweet Taste of Dragonberries!

This site has been added to the listings at Dragonberry, a web directory of all kinds of wonderful comic art things. Go there and discover eye candy galore!

06 May 2007

From the Drawing Board...

Here's one of the first sketches I've sold so far. This one is from an excerpt from a novel by Rick Higginson, a fellow NaNoWriMo participant. Rick's had me do a couple so far, and earns many thanks for his contributions.



Of course, being who I am, I ended up taking this one a little further than expected. I couldn't help but think in terms of color when I drew this, and ended up doing some digital color work on the piece in what I laughingly call spare time. Below is the color version I did...a little rough, but it got the gist of what I was trying to do with it.



Remember, it only takes a $10 donation to buy a 5x7 sketch. Now where else are you going to get a piece of original art for 10 bucks? Of course, you're welcome to donate more. In fact, I heartily recommend it. There must be an eccentric billionaire out there who's willing to pay me horse-choking gobs of cash for a tapestry sized drawing of Halle Berry doing a Josephine Baker impression on the back of an albino elephant at the Grand Ole Opry while the Flying Wallendas execute a tricky triple somersault in the air above her, isn't there?
(OK, maybe that one's for me alone...)

04 May 2007

Best...Price...Ever!

Don't forget that tomorrow is Free Comic Book Day. Here's a chance to grab some great reading material at a fabulous price...free! Comic shops everywhere will be giving away free comics, including such noteworthy titles as "Bongo Comics Free for All" (a Simpsons comic), "The Umbrella Academy", "Comic Genesis" (aka Keenspace, host to The Journals of Simon Pariah), "The Unseen Peanuts" and "Amelia Rules" (great kids comic). If you're a collector, there will be a few nice items to add to your treasure trove here, but even if you're not a reader, here's a great chance to try something new at the best possible price. If you're lucky enough to be in a major centre (like Halifax, whee!), you might even be able to get some books signed by the creators.
So find your nearest comic shop and nab some freebies, then sit back with a self-indulgent snack of your choice (Tandoori Doritos and a Diet Coke is my current fave)and treat yourself to a good reading session...on the house.




Quick side note: once you're done with the comics, I've found a great thing to do with the ones you don't want is to save them up for Hallowe'en and give them out to the trick or treaters. I've been doing it for about 10 years, and now when I open the door, I often hear, "Is this the place that gives out comics?" The kids love 'em, and you're sneakily getting them to read something without them knowing it's good for them.