Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Holidays!

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Wishing ALL of you wonderful holidays and all sorts of good things!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Update: Art (Werewolf Calendar 2010 - Presales Now!)

I've been a bit behind in posting art, and for that I do apologize! I've been trying to finish some things up, but I think I will be working all weekend on some stuff I'm behind on. Good thing it's a long weekend!

Here is my entry for the 2010 Edition of the Werewolf Calendar. You may remember this was finished in June 2009, but I was given the go-ahead to post it in August.


About this Piece: I decided to go with the "opposite" of last year's image. I used warm colors instead of cool, had the werewolf facing left with its back to the viewer, and drew darker fur (it's based on a Mexican wolf). Instead of Celtic style decorations, I used imagery that was Mayan in inspiration, though of course I adapted things in my own way; you'd not see glyphs arranged quite like that in actual Mayan art, for example.

Since the ancient Mesoamericans often depicted ornamentation, markings, and jewelry on their shamanic, transformational, and animal figures, I found it fitting to include them on this one as well. Though they are influenced by Mayan ornamentations, they are of my own design.

A note about subject matter: I understand werewolf appearance, lore and legend is very special to many people; this calendar is not meant to be the definitive resource on werewolves, or to present werewolf appearance, attitude, or action in a way that excludes others (for example, I like werewolves in many different appearances, and I love the snarly fangy ones, too); rather, it's a fun spin on wildlife photography calendars, and is not meant to compete or clash with anyone else's ideas about werewolves*. Enjoy the art and idea, if you like! If not, that's cool too. :)

Pencil sketch here, final pencil piece here. Detail image here.

Tools Used: Most of the work was done by hand, in pencil on Strathmore bristol board. I laid out some of the background in Adobe Illustrator CS3, then re-drew it by hand on the final board to make it more rough and textured. Color was added in Photoshop CS3... yes, with a mouse. I will be getting a tablet! Just need to order one.

*Personally, I love werewolves of all kinds, from drooly Hollywood ones, to more "civilized" ones, to ones from old tales and folklore.

Update: Art (Pen Sketchbook Project)

Here are some more sketches from my Pen Sketchbook Project, a random assortment. Some are from Spring, I'm so behind!


From left: A guardian-type creature, a re-translation of drawings I did as a kid of Guardian Figures from Asia. Though I didn't draw it in this picture, the bird legs fascinated me as a kid, and I drew many of them (albeit in my own style). Next are two more Krampus-type creatures. Last is something that popped into my head while listening to Muse's Supermassive Black Hole (thanks to for turning me onto Muse). I don't know, I pictured it bellowing "Supermassive black HOLLLLLLLLLE" or something.

More soon! Thanks, all, for looking. :)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Art Post: Pen Sketchbook (Random Imagery)

Here is a second helping of sketches from my Pen Sketchbook Project, my ongoing series of personal drawings done just for myself, in little bits of free time. This post is shorter, don't worry. Also, I am just sharing these because you all share your work with me; comments are always appreciated but don't feel pressured to comment or anything. I know I've posted a lot lately, and these are pretty weird.

These were inspired by a variety of things, some more random than others.


First: Another one of my Tiger Gods. You can see more of them in this entry.

Second: Another of my many and varied skull-demons.

Third: I was thinking about Shardik (by Richard Adams) earlier this year and drew this as a result. Great book, but a tough read - not hard to read, more that the characters went through so much.

Fourth: A random being. I had been watching Avatar, The Last Airbender at the time, as you can probably tell.

Fifth: A random alien thing. Looking at it now, it reminds me a little of Enemy Mine, though at the time I was watching Ben 10.

Thanks, as always, for looking! :)

Art Post: Pen Sketchbook (Music-Inspired)

The following are sketches from my Pen Sketchbook Project, my ongoing series of personal drawings of weird things from my head, drawn just for myself, in little bits of free time. There is also a lot of personal blabber about my creation process which you are free to skip, don't worry.

This ended up being long so I split it into two entries. This first group has images inspired directly by a certain song or songs; they're what ~I~ imagined, not meant to be a direct illustration of the lyrics. You probably have your own idea about the songs, different from mine! And that's cool, too.

About the Project: Again, like all my Pen Sketchbook scribbles, they're really just glimpses of what I draw for myself, when inspired by a song or words or a feeling; they're not meant to be finished pieces (hence the pupil-less eyes on many of them), and many of them aren't meant to be any particular type of animal at all. When I draw them I'm letting the art go where it wants to; I'm not thinking about what other people will think, or worrying that everything's perfect, and so on.

Why are the drawings like that? Hm. Some people might look at, for example, this "face the rain" piece and say, "that doesn't look like a real lion!" — and they'd be right! But here's the thing: it's not meant to. That's the whole point of my Pen Sketchbook pieces: they're purely for myself, drawn to express certain things and/or for my own enjoyment, and though they may seem sort of like real creatures, they draw very deeply from my own personal mythology and symbolism. If someone asked me to draw a realistic lion for a project or commission, I would do my best, but my Pen Sketchbook pieces are just for *me*. There are a million artists out there who can draw more realistic lions than I could even if I tried, but that's not the point of my ~personal~ art, to draw things realistically. I LOVE very realistic art and I admire artists who can do it, but that's not the path I follow with my personal art; my own mythology pulls me too strongly.

Besides, I enjoy not knowing where the image will take me. It's a... high? - to just keep drawing along with the inspiration, not knowing where it'll end up. To me, that is the essence of *my* art (YMMV!): drawing directly from inspiration and personal symbolism. My artwork for projects and commissions is very carefully researched and planned, so my Pen Sketchbook stuff is a change from that. And yeah, it's fun to not be neat sometimes. Scribbling in pen is very tactile-y-pleasing. :) Plus, if I don't get my personal-art fix every once in a while I get frustrated and crabby.

Man, it's really had to put my process into words. :/ Thanks for coming along for the ride! I would love to hear about how YOU create (art, stories, music, crafts, anything!), if you ever want to discuss it, too. That's one of my favorite things to discuss.



First: Inspired by R.E.M.'s Hyena (NOTE: Video Link; I like the album version even more). I saw the hyena as a sort of ancient spirit/symbol: "Night time fell at the opening / In the final act of the beginning of time / Hyena, take your role, the stage is set..." The heavy, powerful teeth are what was in my head when I drew it more than anything; I was more interested in the feel of the teeth and snarly mouth and glimpse of expression than in drawing a real hyena.

Second: This is one I had in my head a long time, in various forms, and was inspired by Pearl Jam's Immortality — not the lyrics so much as the melody and the title itself. You may notice it has a little bit of the same symbolism as my 1993 Arak: Absolution piece. The claws are that shape on purpose. Is it a statue or not? Hm. Well sort of.

Third: Rammstein's Du Hast. This song was all teeth and hissing and snarly demon dogs.

Fourth: Alice in Chain's I Stay Away. This changed from the original image in my head, which was much more human-looking, of a guy furling his wings closed and pulling himself up and away. Maybe sometime I will draw that version, too.

Fifth: The Cure's Lullaby. Cure fans (and I am a HUGE fan!) will recognize the inspiration for this. ;) "On candy stripe legs, the spiderman comes / Softly through the shadow of the evening sun..." I love the actual video for it, too (love love love it, yay, creepy).

Sixth: Nine Inch Nail's Sunspots. He is somewhat like my 1990's Syn'Asp, and has six fingers like she does. Bonus points if you guess what "inspired" his face! Also, my FAVORITE video of this song, featuring images of the Mars Rover, is here. I also listened to U2's Magnificent when doing this, though I imagine a golden angel guy for that song as well.

Seventh: Erasure's Breath of Life, especially the lines: "Now I'm coming up for air" and "I never had to call the tune / 'Cause I always drifted with the tide of the moon (Ah la luna, my love, my love, my love)" Another water-spirit like (but not exactly the same as) Aqua'Demia. Her arms and fingers are extra-long on purpose.

Thanks, as always, for looking! :)

Quick Update: Art

Here are some things I hadn't had a chance to post properly before:


From left: Photoshop-colored versions of my Pen Sketchbook Hyena and Tiger God IV that I had as matted prints for a show. I had an LE jumbo one of the Hyena. I still kinda like them better as pen-only sketches - they seem more austere and spiritlike in pen, as I'd originally imagined them. Still, I really wanted to PAINT them, as in gouache and watercolor or acrylic, but I didn't have time. Well, maybe someday! Next, another Photoshop-colored piece, this time of my Maple Rabbit. After that, the final pencils for my July 2010 Werewolf Calendar piece; you can see the original pencil sketch here. I'll have the final color piece posted in August, when I'm slated to upload it (it's finished, though; I had the color final as an LE print 1/1 at an art show). Lastly, a (somewhat crappy) photo of my favorite badge I did at a convention; the commissioner wanted a snarly hyena with those colorations. Yay for snarly things!

Hope you liked them! More soon! As always, thanks for looking! :D

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Endangered Ark Art Cards Now Available!

Now available at my store, the Endangered Ark Art Card set, both Open and Limited Editions!

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The Endangered Ark Art Card Deck is beautifully designed art playing card deck featuring 52 unique endangered species, plus two Joker cards and an artist listing card. The cards I contributed to this deck are the Amur Leopard, the Black Rhino, and the Day Gecko images.

The Limited Edition decks are hand-numbered in gold and feature a leaf image on the side to differentiate them from the Open Edition, and are limited to 1000 decks; I only have a few of these. Also included with the LE decks are three (3) business-card-sized magnets: one each of the leopard, gecko, and rhino. The decks can be signed if desired.

An Open Edition is also available, signed or unsigned.

Photos of the beautiful artwork for this deck:

First half of the Deck
Second half of the Deck
Sample Images 1
Sample Images 2

For more information, please see the official Endangered Ark Art Card website. If you'd prefer to buy from the project organizer, you may order from that site as well.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Endangered Ark

Here is the work I did for the Endangered Ark Art Card Deck. Presales are still available here! (there are also some neat things like keychains and LE prints). I will have some to sell online and at art shows, but for now, you can get in on the presale directly from the site! Remember, ten percent of the proceeds from decks bought directly from the site of the Project will be donated to charities decided upon by the participating artists.

As always, I like my pencils better than my originals... (more practice for me, eh?), so here are both, of the Amur Leopard, Black Rhino, and Day Gecko.


These are the images as I did them; they are slightly different (cropped, as necessary) for the final cards. In doing these, I kept in mind that they would be printed smaller, so I tried to be conscious of how they'd look scaled down - would they read okay? would they clog up too much? does anything jump out as wrong? - and so on. I attempted to be as true to the animals as possible, looking at many images of the animals to make sure I had a good sampling of references (mmmm, research) — though I am not a photorealist, so they are noticeably stylized.

Besides the decks, I will have prints available, and perhaps some LE prints too, as well as the pencil originals of the leopard and gecko.

Thanks, as always, for looking! :) More soon!