Monday, August 30, 2010

can you pickle a star?

well, here it is...oil on canvas. i finished last week and am working on making it into a postcard today. i like how it ended up and decided to make it my next mailer. here's to finding a big-time publisher to fulfill my dreams! :)

hope all is well with everybody!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Squaremania - title page

So I have a couple of variations - any thoughts?  I think it's done, but I would like suggestions on which one is stronger...

The last two are pretty much the same, but the title is a different color...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

something borrowed...and something original...

I did the copycat picture (above) from "The Frog Prince Continued" (illo by Steve Johnson/words by Scieszka). This one was a challenge to copy because the reference was tiny. If you have Salisbury's "Illustrating Children's Books" you can find this image on page 17. The reference was about 3" X 4" which I exploded out to around 9" X 12". For the life of me, I couldn't mix turquoise for her dress...amazingly frustrating. Anyone know how to get a bright saturated turquoise from the old palette? Probably would be easiest from the tube, I guess...

I can't resist the urge to do something of my own lately, so I'm cheating on my plan a bit here. This one is for IF (Illustration Friday). The topic is "star gazing." I spent some time mulling it over and came up with the the notion of having some weird alien smitten by our local star...and just enough so that it decides to jar it up and take it home. Those surrounding circles are the planets and there will be a pretty developed asteroid belt and nebula in the background. Its early to post, but what the heck...I'll never meet the Friday deadline anyways. This will be my largest oil painting yet (14" X 15"). I hope to refine it to great detail. See anything major needing refinement?

I have about 3 paintings going at once now. Thanks to Isaac for suggesting multiple works...that's a great solution.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Shy Monster

I never know what to title my art. I hate trying to come up with new names for illustrations so let me know if you have a better name for this piece.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

peter paul rubens...

oil on paper
Selection from "St. Ambrose and Emperor Theodosius" (a MUCH larger work)
Peter Paul Rubens

I'm still amazed at the youtube oil painters who work alla prima. For example, this guy...

It takes lots of confidence to lay in the proper colors on the first stroke like Greg Manchess. Practice, practice, practice.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Hi there folks,

This is an illustration I'm working on - it's going to be the title page or whatever (the front image?) that I'm going to be sending to licensing agents (and, if they all say no, then to potential licensees)...any thoughts?  Obviously it needs color - and I'm thinking that the blocks with the letters in them are going to need lines (as they kind of stand out for not having lines while everything else does)...

Friday, August 13, 2010


This was posted on the illustration board I'm on and if you are a fan of David Weisner as I am you'll enjoy! _

Monday, August 9, 2010

My book's video trailer

Just thought I'd share.

Smoky and the Feast of Mabon

Still working on goaty pirates.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Feed back appreciated

Just finished this piece and would like to hear some comments. Good or bad.

to license or what...?

So I've been researching licensing all week long - thanks to some links from Patti I've had quite a lot to go through.  My first try will be to find a licensing agent (I have a list of 3 of my dream choices, followed by 3 or 4 second tier ones...and then a bunch of 'if I can't find anything better' types)...and go from there.  If the agent doesn't work, then I'll attempt to license them myself and if I have any success with that, then I'll reattempt to contact an agent.

But going into this I have a prominent animation producer who says he likes the characters so much he 'wants to eat them up' and the president of nickelodeon said they were a breath of fresh air.  So I'm going to be overusing those two quotes as much as possible until someone of prominence sees these and does something financially fantastic (for me) with them.

At least that's the idea...

I'm still putting together a title page and a little blurb about those are the final hurdles...I should be finished with it in the next week and a half or so...and then I'll be casting it out and we'll see if I have any bites...

Landscape study

Just finished my landscape study, focusing on color matching/mixing.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


color study
oil on paper
from "Ichabod Crane" (N. Rockwell)

Here's my latest copy. Rockwell is no easy guy to copy...there are such complexities in the way he uses color. I find myself wanting to work bigger and bigger (mine is about 11 X 11 inches - I'm sure Rockwell's was much larger) to accommodate all the details. Its hard to match all those colors when my smallest brush is still too big. Oh well, it was still fun to develop. The likeness to the actual/original is not that close again.