Illustration Friday – Creature

monsterfriendThis is a piece from sometime last year.  Its another thrift store detournement piece.  When I pulled this off my wall this morning, I totally forgot that I treated it with a layer of modge podge to try and unify my painting with the original.  It kind of worked.  I might try this again on my cobra commander  blue boy painting I finished this summer.  Happy Halloween, everybody!

Illustration Friday : ONOMATOPOEIA

Illustration Friday : ONOMATOPOEIA

So this is my quick and dirty illustration for illustration Friday this week.  Onomatopoeia immediately makes me think of Batman.  I drew this out on a post it and decided to finish it off there.  I like the quick and … Continue reading

Illustration Friday: Hidden

mountaincat2

AKA Garden of the Gods and Cats.

I’ve been working on this on an off for a few weeks but decided to submit it to illustration friday.  This week’s word is hidden so I thought this was appropriate.  One of the things I really like to do is go garage sale-ing for cheap prints that people don’t want anymore (for instance, this colored picture of Garden of the Gods cost me $1 with a wonderful gold frame) and then paint something into them.  After I made a few of these, I learned that some artists call this detournement.  I just like making them.

Frame of Reference – Bill Lust-ashe Murray

billmurraymustache1

So yesterday I posted my final illustration for Illustration Friday, but I also wanted to share the original sketch I drew for the project.  This is a little, well, alot more realistic version of the final image.  Now why didn’t I finish this image as opposed the the more cartoony one?  I think it is because I am trying to get a grasp on a style that is my own.  I think there is an inclination (at least for me) to start off wanting to be realistic to show, at least to myself, that I can do it.  I also have a tendency to want to go in a million directions at once and the harder thing for me to do is buckle down and say this is the path I am walking on now.  Some people call it branding their style and artists and creative types probably don’t want to box themselves in in that way.  They can be a photographer, a graphic designer, a film maker, an illustrator ( I write these because these are all skills that I have, yours might be a little different) but to be all of those things at once and to try and sell that to someone who you might want to work for, it becomes a hard sell. Even if all the stuff is good, people might shy away because it lacks simplicity and specifics.  One show I love watching is Kitchen Nightmares where Gordon Ramsay walks into failing restaurants to see why they aren’t working.  Sure, most of the time its because they are dirty and have bad habits or are just crazy, but many times the owners have giant scattered menus.  If I see Gordon flip through a 3 page menu, I know he’s going to slash it down to at least a page by the end of the show.  He gives them a handful of new recipes and insists on making those few specific plates great so people will come back.

I think the same can be said for creative artists.  I look at my friend Jonathan Gibson who creates these amazing paintings and teaches at Xavier University, but he is also a great photographer and has a successful side business as a wedding photographer.  Jon is one of those guys that you could probably put anything creative in front of him and he could do it.  But by focusing on his photography instead of trying to sell himself as a creative grab bag, he can get work.

And I’d like to get work illustrating, but that means I need to focus. We’ll see how that goes.

Flashback Friday – Maroons Comics

2008-02-12firstI’ve seen other people do this Flashback Friday bit, so I thought I’d do one of my own.  Years ago, I wrote and drew a comic strip called Maroons.  It followed the lives of Porkpie, Quackmeyer, and Mooseport as they tried their best to live together as roomates.  I only submitted the strip to one publisher and got a response back to try it as a web comic.  I also got the sense from the publisher that the industry was dying and it wasn’t a viable career anymore.  Though my childhood dream of becoming Jim Davis didn’t come true, I did take a crack at it.