Monday, December 27, 2010

Long month

Mayhaps you noticed my absence. Mayhaps you didn't. There are a lot of blogs to follow, and so little time...

Regardless, I return. Tired, but determined. I have accompanied my girlfriend on an extended hospital stay, participated in the student art sale, and survived the holidays (so far).

I blew two of my self-appointed deadlines (artorder and the frazetta tribute) and still haven't gotten much of anything off the ground. But I painted tonight. And it was most satisfying. My little squid girl has been lonely as of late, what with my distractions and side projects. Here she be, closer yet to being haply finished. Sorry for the poor picture quality.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

New style

So I'm about to try a series of work in a new-ish style so that I could be more approachable from an editorial standpoint. So I am incorporating much more of my drawing and trying my hand digitally for a cleaner, less painterly feel. This is one of my pieces in progress, a cropped image from the original named, "Internet Explorer." As soon as I can, I'll have the helmet looking more like a space helmet and less like a weird halo. Any critiques? Suggestions? Do you like the new direction?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Awesome sauce.

This weekend I went to the first art convention I've ever been to. It. Was. Awesome.

Being able to see the originals of paintings that I've looked at on the internet for ages was a real treat. Seeing the strokes, the little colors, and then turning to the side and being able to talk to the artist him or herself was truly inspiring. Not every day do you get to show Dan Dos Santos your portfolio or ask Donato Giancola about his skin tone colors.

I shook every hand I could, I asked every question I could, even the stupid ones, and even though I was star-struck and awkward, it was great learning to push past that. I got a lot and a lot of great insight and input, and a surprisingly positive response to my portfolio. I even got to sit in the hot tub with Lars Grant West and drink alongside Dos Santos and Patrick Jones, to name a few. Yeah, I sound like a fan-boy. I am. So be it.

One of the scariest encounters was with Jon Schindehette, who in real life is super, super nice, and also very muscled. Of course it was all my nervousness, and it was awesome to talk to him, but man-o, I'm glad I brought my antiperspirant.

Other standouts were Scott Altman, who is ridiculously nice, Ryan Pancoast, someone who I think is well on his way to pure awesome, and again, Lars, who was really nice and informative to talk to. Eric Fortune really gave me some detailed insight into my work, and Dan Dos Santos had some great tips on surface texture with my work. I could keep listing names and blubbering happily, but rest assured, I am happy to be broke, after all I gained from this trip.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Paintings and opportunities

Here's a fantasy piece I've been working on for the upcoming Illuxcon. I don't have very many fantasy pieces, oddly enough. That is soon to be rectified. At Illuxcon, I have signed up for a portfolio review with the ever-informational Jon Schindehette, Creative Art Director at Wizards of the Coast.

I love fantasy, and I love science fiction, but I have never really felt comfortable building fantasy paintings in the LOTR era. I feel like it is cliche, and I never want to be seen as a painter of cliches. That said, I am trying to make this piece straddle a fine line. Not shown here is the atmosphere and the 'magic.' Our old wizard foreground is firing lightning at the British coat and tie style magician in the middle-ground, who is deflecting the shot into the street lamp behind him.

The story is as simple as it gets: wizard fight. I thought of a young, proud generation of wizards working to topple the old order, as brash and bold as they are powerful and impatient. Unafraid, even, of picking a fight in the middle of the street in the early morning fog. The buildings and our character in the middle-ground will all be very affected by the short draw distance and smothering effect of the fog.

Speaking of Jon Schindehette, I have very exciting news. Recently he posted on his blog, ArtOrder, that he was looking to mentor someone. He asked all of those interested to submit five pieces of art and a write-up stating why we would be a good mentee and why we want to be one. Well, I had to jump at that.

Even more recently he announced that five of the artists (out of however many) were standouts for his particular help, and that he would be asking each if they wanted him to be their mentor. And I was one of them! This all happened about two weeks ago, and initially I was hesitant to mention this opportunity, as I was unsure whether, of the five, he would continue to narrow it down. I still don't know if he is helping with everyone on the list, but he is helping with me. So, hurray!

Another happy point of news: I may be getting an in-house position at an Ad agency working on photography layout sketches, a sort of blueprint for all of their mailer work for big clients. I had an interview with them on Monday, and they will be sending me a 'test' next week to see how I do. Working on actual illustration would be much more of a fit than working in Joann as a day job, methinks.

That's not all, either! But that's all I'm going to tell you about for now, ha. Illuxcon is coming very soon and, outside of helping my dad build a shop for his work and making money in Joann, I have dropped everything so I can focus on painting and making my portfolio shine. It is a very important weekend for me, and I've been setting up for months now.

Big things are in store! Being patient is even harder now that I am waiting on actual things, but it is easier, too, because at least I know there is a light at the end of this tunnel.

I shot the sheriff. Once a week 6

I don't want to be seen as a western painter. So maybe I should stop painting westerns. They are a great test, though. It's like taking an aptitude test every year, seeing what I've learned and, even, what I did better in the last one. This is a little study that, once all my other work is done, and there is thankfully a lot of it right now, will probably go to finish and stand beside the other cowboys.

I will also give a shout-out to Jake Murray, his mention of the Zorn palette influenced much of what I did to this piece. Another blog of note, if anyone who follows me does not already follow them, is Muddy Colors. Donato's post today made me laugh, as it is specifically why I think this piece works well: a limited greenish palette for the skin that looks warm when set next to the ultramarine I put liberally in the background.

8x10, oil, approx. 2 hours

Monday, October 25, 2010

Interview time

I'll be back later, pray for me!

Friday, October 22, 2010

I have a habit of...

Posting right before a post saying that I'm about to post. I guess it's just my way of letting the world know I haven't forgotten about artwork. There are alot of exciting, exciting things underway for me in the next few weeks (regardless of my little rant earlier) so it has been a busy time for me, working in little fits and starts on multiple pieces not worthy of showing. But by early November I hope to have five new paintings. Two of them you have seen progress on, but three others will be wonderful little surprises to fill in some gaps in my portfolio. So yeah, I'll post soon. See you then.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The life-cycle of a painting

A painting has a life-cycle like any thing else. I know, I just blew your mind. But let's move beyond the painfully obvious and discuss the one step that all artists know is coming, and dread it. The teenage stage.

At some point after all the sketches and the color studies and the initial lay-in, your painting is old enough to develop a personality its own. Like any young one, your painting will make mistakes on the road to success. This is not all its fault, really, because growing pains are just that. Painful.

Like a teenager, it becomes unsightly, base coat colors in place of pimples, structure loss and color issues in place of awkward proportions. Like any parent who loved the younger, more cooperative painting, you may feel like giving up on it. But like any parent worth their salt, that is exactly the time that you must have patience. Some paintings may rebel a little too much, being angry and ignorant, and those paintings may need a stronger guiding hand.

The real strategy to dealing with a teenage painting is breathing. I recommend breathing at all times, but when especially frustrated with a muddy face or an offensive background, you must breath. Set the paintbrush down, think about happy trees and afros. Don't make your Rockwell into a Pollock with rash, angry brushstrokes.

My entire goal when painting, outside of making a flippin' sweet painting, is to get past the teenage stage as quickly as possible. At some point you will hate your painting and want to give up on it, almost every time. There are three things you can do to alleviate this pressure and bring your teenager into a respectable adult without your painting screaming "I hate you" and slamming doors.

The first thing I do is realize that my painting is in the teenage stage. At some point during painting, I can feel frustration building. It may not even be noticeable initially. You may feel antsy, like you want to stand up and walk around, like an itch in your mind. This is the teenage stage. Don't get up now, because if you do, you'll look at your painting after pacing and realize that it isn't the same young project you used to know and love.

Realize the beginning of this stage and stick it through. This brings me to the second step: continue according to plan. I really wanted to add some red into this hand once I got done with the sky, but now the sky is all crappy and I just want to start over (insert clenching fists here). Wrong move. You're done with the sky now. What was it you were going to do next? Put red into the hand. Be the mature one, and go about your painting as if nothing is going wrong. Inanimate objects always win an argument.

Finally, like I said before, breath. This isn't just a big long sigh with some temple rubbing, this is a very pro-active break. What do you mean by that? you ask. First off, don't interrupt. Secondly, I mean that when you look at your painting (set the brush down, Wild Bill) it may take considerable effort to remember how it looked in your mind's eye. Look at your painting, really assess it. Is that color right? No, but it's an OK undercoat.

Maybe certain parts of your painting do need scrubbed out. I realized just recently that the underdrawing for one of my paintings was inaccurate. I had to paint over several parts that I really liked. But if I let fear of never getting just that right brushstroke again keep me from correcting foundational errors, then I would have one beautifully flawed piece of work. My painting would never grow out of its teenage stage, and spend the rest of its days on the couch drinking 2-liters and playing video games in my basement.

So look at your painting in an honest critical and positive light. Again with the seeming oxymoron. You point out what is wrong, you look for what is broken, but after that, you look for how to fix it. And make sure to realize what is working well. Build a plan of attack that builds on what is already on the canvas, and be methodical about it. When you know what you're going to do, go back to step two. Carrying out this plan will have you antsy and unsure, and it's all about sticking to the plan.

There are no-hope paintings. If it's for a commission, disown it after you're done. If it's for you, I don't blame you for whatever happens. I have a few nice cowboy paintings that used to be orcs... And sometimes a painting will all fit together. The teenage stage takes half an hour before it's through, and somehow you never had to deal with that sinking feeling. Great! But for all those other times, keep this in mind. Hopefully your next rebellious painting won't have a life-cycle that ends on the pyre.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I have been complacent for far too long. For over a year now, I have worked at Joann, making little over minimum wage. And when I started working there, I thought, why, this is only temporary, I should have a new job by the winter. When winter rolled around, I was still working in Joann. When spring rolled around, I thought, why, I'll have a new job by summer, certainly. And I did nothing to change it. I waited around on my butt hoping that someone would contact me, that someone would just chance by my website or my blog and hand me money and a fast track to the top.

Lack of funds was my excuse, I can't pay to market myself. But I am very quickly (or, perhaps, slowly) realizing that I can't afford not to market myself. Unless I would like to continue to work at Joann. Don't get me wrong, working in a frame shop is aloooot better than 70% of the jobs I could be working. But it isn't what I spent four years and untold monies on learning.

At Joann, near the frame shop, they sell posters. These posters have inspirational phrases like 'live, pray, love,' and 'don't give up on your dreams,' or, just simply, 'dream.' Each of these are accompanied by images of clouds and islands and rolling waves. Each of these are printed on thin paper and mounted to cardboard, so that they can be put into the cheap plastic frames in the next aisle over. Each of these frames are then taken from the store and put into offices without windows, cubicles plastered with sticky-notes, and bathrooms with sinks surrounded by seashells and assorted face soaps.

These posters are a reminder to never give up. On what? Your watery island cloud dreams? On each of these posters is the definition of a dream 'getaway.' Why are you trying to get away!? I dream of dreaming for a living. Dreaming up images to inspire more dreams. Visiting new worlds on my canvas each day, finding challenges to attack with more enjoyment than sitting on a sun drenched beach picking sand out of my toes and holding my hand over my face while I look at the horizon.

Those posters are a symbol of loss. A reminder that, as you walk from the water cooler to your desk, you've already given up on being a movie star or a business mogul or a pop sensation. They say 'dream' but they don't say 'work your ass off and get those dreams!' That's the kind of poster I want to put up. With big black font. On blank, white canvas. My dream is a job. One that I would never want to 'getaway' from.

I just wanted to get this out. Had to tell somebody, and I think my girlfriend is getting tired of the rant. I've been so frustrated lately because it feels like all I ever do is wait for phone calls. Job opportunities, portrait commissions, people who want to purchase my work. I'm tired of calling up my family, excited about this opportunity or that, and having it all fizzle away. The phone stays silent. The e-mail is never sent. I'm not sure if I'm too patient or not aggressive enough. But I know I'm frustrated.

I want to come back to this and laugh five years from now, and tell my-younger-self, Christmas Carol style, that this was all just a stepping stone to a better life. But it doesn't feel like that right now, no sir. Thanks for listening, internet.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

More Progress

Lots of hard work I've put in on this one so far. Here's to seeing whether she's done by October. (glass clink)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sea witch progress

Here are my steps, layer after layer of different colors, trying to truly paint indirectly. It's all new to me, what with the glazing and the transparent color. I actually quite like it. Hope you like it too!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What do you do with a painting like maria? (Once a week 5)

Not too happy with the likeness, but the skin tones work just fine. Thanks for posing for me, maria!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Cowboy Mirror

My next cowboy is just now coming together, so I thought I would show you. He is designed as a mirror for the first, obviously...

Sea witch line drawing

She's back. And this time she's 36x48.

One a Week 4, for real

And now for my most cliche concept yet, a gladiator. Why? Because they're effin' cool. And it only takes three hours. And it's just for fun. Stop asking why already. Enjoy.

one a week 4

is coming... just let it dry. Next up will probably be color studies for my frazetta piece. And my next full day off may be spent sending as many e-mails as I can. I bought my Illuxcon ticket and signed up for a portfolio review, so I can feel it coming on. So close...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

One A Week 3

This one I'm actually going to go back into and add a head, the coils are not nearly sinister enough... muah haha.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

New 8x10

These things really are a blast. I will probably make these two little studies into larger, finished paintings, but I may also just make compositions that freak my fancy in 8x10 as three hour exercises. Weekly? Bi-weekly? We'll start easy: Once a week I will update, Palumbo-style, with a little 8x10 oil study. Here's week two.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Sea witch study

Last night I couldn't sleep, I just had a great image in my head, crying to get out. So today I drew up a little 8x10 and did a color/value study. Roughly 3 hours. Fun stuff. I should do more of these! Holler at me if you think I should make a big 'un. The lights in the distance are a submarine.

Sick day

I am sick today, so I am looking at all kinds of artwork. It's amazing how much streaming information there is on illustration out there. The community is very tight knit and I just want to fit into it. Workin on artwork, very inspired and very interested in submitting to every illustration show out there. Will post soon.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


I am finally done moving. I have a much larger studio space now, and a much nicer neighborhood. Yay. Artwork soon.

Saturday, August 21, 2010


Every once in a while, you gotta draw yourself. Even if it means sitting on a stool in the bathroom because it's the only mirror in the apartment. Yeah, I thickened my beard in the drawing, deal with it. I can dream.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Frazetta Tribute

This is for a juried show in Chicago that I heard about from ArtOrder. The link to the gallery is here. Comments, critiques are welcome. Story is modeled after old adventure movies. REALLY old adventure movies. Pilot goes down in Africa, has to find his way back home, et cetera. This is followed by lots of cheesy acting and a contrived love story with the African Panther Queen. Since Frazetta is the master of epicness, anatomy, and classic compositions, I built my own painting on a pyramid of figures at the height of action. The challenge now will be to paint it in a palette befitting a Frazetta. 30x40

Friday, August 13, 2010

Soon I will post again, with exciting work.

There's a Frazetta tribute afoot... And some other things I need to work on, including cowboy no. 2 nearing completion. Car crashes and moving and all that fun stuff has kinda sidetracked me as late.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Drawn while my girlfriend read a book, she told me to tell you that she doesn't always mean mug like this.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

My Monday night

I didn’t know how to put all of this, but I figured that friends and family might like to know. So I wrote it as clearly as possible. Everything happened in this way as clearly as I can remember it.

“Predators is out.” I said. “Whaddaya think?”
“Let’s go.” Said Silver.
“Yeah, why not?”
“We’ll have to find showtimes.”
“Let’s go now.”
We got up from the bench and set the hookah aside. Smoke wreathed the doorways we walked through as we stepped over legs around tables. Illustrated and pierced smokers watched us from the corners of the room.
“You’ve never seen the first Predator?”
Silver shook her head. “Parts of it.” Her giant eyes looked at me, asking forgiveness. “Sorry.”
“No, that’s fine. Don’t say you’re sorry. So you haven’t seen it. I’m just amazed.” We stopped at the street and looked both ways. “Wait.”
The light turned red. We trotted across holding hands and I looked up in the sky. “I love clouds like these, giant cumulous that look like epic castles. As the sun sets they’ll turn bright gold and pink. I want those colors to be in my painting. Yano?”
Silver said I know, because I talked about the clouds all the time. We got in my car and I talked about clouds. We traveled to my apartment as I talked about clouds. Silver sat patiently and listened. She smiled at my exuberance for nothingness sweetly.
I texted my roommate Andrew and asked if he wanted to go to Predators.
“Hell yeah.” Said his text.
When we got to the apartment I looked up show times for the movie with Andrew. Silver sat at the Xbox 360 and started to play Fallout 3. It was our latest addiction. The showtimes we could go to were 10:00 p.m. and 10:45 p.m.
“Well, if we go to the ten o’clock we need to leave like, now.” Said Andrew. The time was 9:20.
“You want to go now? Or later?”
“Doesn’t matter to me.”
We walked into the living room and confronted Silver. “Kay, the times we can go are ten and ten forty-five. When do you want to go?”
She looked up from the T.V. “I don’t care. When do you work?”
“One.” I said. “I don’t have to get up early. If we go now we can make the ten o’clock.”
She looked at the video game longingly. “Fine, let’s go.”
We shut off the lights and the television and the Xbox and walked out of the front door.
“You driving?” Asked Andrew.
I sighed and reluctantly nodded. “Just don’t have much gas. That’s fine.”
“I don’t have my keys, so.”
“Yeah let’s go.”
We got in my car. It was a junk heap, but it had running AC and it got me places. That was enough. The little radio in the dash was so old and crappy that earlier that month, my car had gotten broken into and it was left alone.
It was dark by then, and I turned on my lights as we pulled out onto the street. “So Silver hasn’t seen Predator.”
“You what? C’mon, it’s got Arnie.” Andrew made his best ‘Arnold screaming’ impersonation.
“What’s it even about?”
“It’s like, a bunch of marines in a jungle—“ I slowed to hit the speed bump. The car in front of me looked odd, like it was in my lane. And then it really was in my lane.
The headlights of the car were very close, drifting to the right, like a dream or an apparition. I hit the brakes and, at the last second, the headlights turned, fast and hard, directly into us. I heard a screech, and Silver said Oh my God. The headlights went up, left, and then disappeared below the hood of my car. That was when the air bag hit me.
Everything was quiet. The pitter-patter of airbag dust sounded like rain. Choked breathing came from my right. I looked around, but my glasses were off. “Is everyone OK?”
Andrew was in the dark of the backseat, bent over and holding his face. He moaned softly. Silver was huddled against the door, holding her chest. “Something’s wrong. Something’s wrong I can’t breath.”
I reached over, still trying to absorb it all. “Did you have your seatbelt on?” I reached for her, looking for the clasp.
She nodded. Silver clutched at her chest. “Something’s wrong.”
I opened my door and jumped out and ran around the car. Car accident. Get Silver out. I saw a man standing next to the other car. “Who was driving?”
“I was.” He was still dressed in his Target uniform. He was staring at our car. Standing still.
As I rounded the car to Silver’s door, Andrew opened his. With all the anger I could muster I spat, “What the fuck were you thinking?”
“I just fell asleep, man.”
I tried to open the door on her side, but the clasp was broken. She was on the other side of the window, doubled over. “FUCK” I hit the door and ran back around.
“Silver, stay calm.” I pulled the clasp from inside of her door and it opened. I pushed it further and ran around the car again. Andrew was covered in blood. I pulled Silver out of the car and set her in the grass as straight as I could, trying to avoid back injuries.
“I can’t breath. Something’s wrong. Something’s broken.” Her eyes were bigger than usual, wide with fear. I wanted to scream at the world and cry. I did not want to say goodbye to my girlfriend on the grass on the side of the road.
Andrew immediately knelt in the grass beside us and prayed for Silver. Already there was a crowd around us. Andrew stood and said, “Someone call an ambulance.”
He pulled out his cell phone and called 911 himself.
Silver was on the ground, squirming with pain. Her breaths were shallow and her eyes were rolling back into her head. “Something’s wrong. Am I going to die?”
“No, you’re fine, it’s fine. You’re O.K. Just breath slow, in out in out. Breath Silver. Silver stay with me. You’re fine.”
The police arrived and asked every question five times. One man asked if the car was parked when I hit it. Waiting for the ambulance was the longest ten minutes of my life.
Today the 14th Silver got home from the hospital with bruises and crutches, but she got home alive, and in more or less good condition. Andrew got his face checked out, since he head-butted the back of Silver’s seat at 35 miles per hour. He is fine, with no major concussion. I was the safest person in the car and came out with a burn on my arm from the air bag and a sore nose. That’s about that.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Lawn Order

The uprising was quiet.
Slow. And ever growing.
The downfall was violent.
Like rusted steel bones grinding.

Once. Came the squeal. And again.
The war machine stirred and blew
smoke from his nostrils.
But we stood by our brothers.

His great wheels were
painted with my companions.
Black fingerless hands bundled together.
Pulling in unison.

On his bottom was the mouth
Filled with scissorteeth.
Our bodies clotted his gums
A sticky green plaque.
But we stood by our brothers.

None of us were spared
Sliced into clean lines
To stand at attention.
Doesn't it look so much nicer now?
Clean lines. Narrow lines.
Standing at attention.
We will rise again.
We will stand by our brothers.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Last Man Standing

I have decided to do a series of cowboys entitled last man standing, in which all my characters, all but one, are shot. Not to focus on death, but rather to focus on what I think is the fulcrum of all (especially italian) westerns. The shootout. There will be six pieces overall, all 24x36 in oils. Here is a sample of one I have started painting and a sketch for another. I may even inject some humor into some of these, we will see.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Here's a portrait of my friend Dion. I told him oh-so-long ago that I would put his portrait up here, and here it is. Sorry for the wait. Hopefully I can put a good number of portraits up here. Anyone interested? Holler at me, as the young folk say.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Discover a Muse

Alright, here's my submission for the Muse challenge on ArtOrder. It has been a long process, and a good one. not the happiest with the photos I got of the canvas, but overall this is the best painting I've done yet. Some of the submissions are wicked awesome, so let's hope that I can keep up! Learning with every new piece.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

D&D pin-up

So Art Order gave out a pin-up challenge in the vein of Gil Elvgren, and I could not resist!!! I am not a huge D&D-er, so I changed a few items when painting this tiefling girl, if only to make her more cute and cheeky. Still got a little bit of dagger under that skirt there, so I feel her rather fiendish traits have been conveyed. Hope everyone likes it!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

New piece

Well, I am working on an Art Order challenge called Find a Muse. Soon i will post pictures, and let me say, I am very excited about this one.

Friday, April 16, 2010


"By going to a near-Earth object, an asteroid, and perhaps even modifying its trajectory slightly, we would demonstrate a hallmark in human history," said Grunsfeld, who flew on three shuttle missions to fix the Hubble Space Telescope. "The first time humans showed that we can make better decisions than the dinosaurs made 65 million years ago."

This was in an article on Yahoo news. No laughter followed, no silly banter was at work, and this was not written on the 1st of April. Us humans show that we can make better decisions than the dinosaurs?

Does anyone actually listen to the experts, or do we just eat it for breakfast and wait for lunch?

He got it wrong, we showed we made better decisions than the dinosaurs when we decided to quit smoking and lower our caloric intake.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Evil Corporation Catering

[Two men are shopping in the meat department at a Giant Eagle. They are big and burly. Upon seeing one another, they both brighten.]

Blake: Hey, Dameon, is that you?

Dameon:Blake? Hot damn! What are you doing here?

Blake: Eh, I just got the grill out, decided to pick up some of the good stuff!

Dameon: I hear ya. I can't wait to break mine in. The wife got me the—

Blake: The GrillMaster Z12?

Dameon: Ha, the one!

Blake: Holy Pete, she's a keeper! You'll have to have me over!

Dameon: Yeah, man. It's been a long while. Too long. Are you still catering for Anarchy Inc.?

Blake: Eh, the bosses were getting all weird. You know, for an evil corporation built to cause anarchy they sure are suspiciously bureaucratic.

Dameon: I hear ya.

Blake: Weren't you working that little shop in the Volcano Lounge? I heard they got raided the other day.

Dameon: Hot damn. I have to tell you this. Where's a—[looks around for somewhere to sit]there, that bench over there. [both men sit facing one another] O.K., so that raid you heard about? I was there when it happened, man.

Blake: Holy Pete.

Dameon: Yeah. I looked death right in the eye as it asked me for a scoop of potatoes.

Blake: You're kidding.

Dameon: Nope. So, I was doing like I always do, making sure the line was running smoothly, checking on the back-ups, and all the food was in order, right? They were having this Thanksgiving Day dinner that Dr. Destroyer was putting on, in light of the recent stock crash success. We were getting time an a half, and I knew the food would be a hit. Feasts are my specialty, and minions don't really expect much, right?

Blake: You're the best of 'em, Dameon. [fist bump]

Dameon: Alright, so my guy at the potatoes, a big Scandinavian who could crush serious heads (he makes the lightest fondue you'll ever eat)...

Blake: Sergei?

Dameon: You know him.

Blake: He's been on my crew once or twice. Good worker. Great cook. He's mean with a Mac. 11.

Dameon: Yeah, anyhow, he decides it's time for a quick cigarette. Everything's in order, so I fill in for him. And that's when he walks through the line. Effing Secret Agent 0.

Blake: No shit.

Dameon: None. He looks at me with his steel gray eyes and says, in a cool, clean British accent, 'hold the gravy.'

Blake: Ha. Vegetarian?

Dameon: I donno. I'm just sitting there thinking, here's an obviously British man in a shoddy uniform, right? In the middle of a convention with thugs and world class criminals who are all decidedly not British. How did he get this far? Don't they have some kind of ticket checker or something? It's an evil corporation we're talking about here. Inside of a volcano. There ought to be a short guest list, and a really big, mean bouncer. Right?

Blake: Of course.

Dameon: So I'm scooping potatoes, wondering if I should just let him slide, when my head chef, Grencko, realizes what I'd been thinking all along. This is Agent 0. There's no make-up on him, no prosthetics, it's like seeing a movie star and thinking it's just their dopple-ganger. So Grencko pulls his trusty Luger and like that, pow, he's on the ground, and I'm covered in blood.

Blake: No shit.

Dameon: My body kept the blood from misting the potatoes.

Blake: Phew.

Dameon: But I look up, and there's the silenced pistol sitting in Agent 0's hand, and it's pointed at my belly, and in his eyes I see nothing. Not a damn thing. He just popped Grencko, a family man who's only vices where being a small arms dealer and part time assassin, and there's nothing but steel in his eyes. Right then I knew if I reached for my Colt 45—

Blake: You still have that old thing?

Dameon: Yeah—dammit, where was I?

Blake: Gun. Belly. Steel eyes.

Dameon: Oh, O.K. I knew that if I reached for my gun he would kill me too, without a blink. And then the guy at the corn station, and the guy at the cider station. Complementary cider, and yet I knew Agent 0 would ice him. So I threw my hands up and acted like a pedestrian.

Blake: Eh, what could you do?

Dameon: Not much. I got under the table, and told my crew to run like hell.

Blake: They all make it?

Dameon: Most of them. Lost Yango to the lava because some jack-ass hit the self-destruct button.

Blake: I remember Yango.

Dameon: Yeah. It's a occupational hazard and all, but I just didn't think it would ever happen to me.

Blake: I hear ya. Well, that's nuts.

Dameon: Yeah.

Blake: So...

Dameon: Hey well, it was good seeing you.

Blake: Yeah, man, you too. It's been too long. Give me a call sometime. You have my number?

Dameon: No, no, here.[they swap numbers] Alright. I'm obviously out of work for the moment, so if you find some work and you want to...

Blake: Yeah, yeah, sure. Me and Sheila have been working on a new addition to the family, so anything helps.

Dameon: Really? Boy or girl?

Blake: Don't know yet. She's obviously rooting for a girl.

Dameon: Oi, don't they always.

Blake: Ha, yeah. It's good to see you. I'll give you a ring, I hear Captain Chaotic is in need of good food service for his new underground lair he's working on.

Dameon: Great, great, yeah. I'll see you soon man.

[both men walk opposite directions awkwardly]

Friday, March 26, 2010


I realized only recently that I don't have any fantasy work in my portfolio. I have some sci-fi, and maybe a cartoon or two, but no orcs or dragons or magical shiny stuff. Thus I have decided to paint the first of a few, potential many (if these can land me a job or two or five). This is the first figure in a two figure composition. Two orcs on the battlefield, one dead, one mourning. When all the hobbits and elves are smoking pipes and giggling over mead, the orcs are burying the dead: their fathers, their brothers, their comrades. I hope you feel bad when you giggle at the sight of a crying orc.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Some progress on balancing...

Moving a little slower, I've been here and there, but tomorrow my painting will have my full attention, so hopefully I'll have a finished piece to post up here. Rock.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Pillow King progress

I had the day off today, and so decided to paint my fingers off. I regret that decision, as I am now typing to you with my tongue. But the painting looks good! (after I wiped off the fingers and excess blood.)

I have only a little bit more to go. I am very excited with how this is turning out, and it was fun to paint! I am already planning beyond the Muses, which are on hold until I find a model. Any crits on this are not only welcomed, but applauded.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

More musing

One more muse to go. Can you guess who Melete is?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Pillow King update

Progress so far!!! I haven't worked on the moon portion at all.

Daily posts, will I be able to do it?

I know, this is a crappy excuse, but trust me, I have a BIG update on the pillow king painting. And maybe another muse to amuse you with, hmm? all coming up tomorrow. :)

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Guess what

I started painting the pillow king. I am pleased. I think you will be pleased too.

Pictures in t-minus soon.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

I muse more

The tree now. I'm doing each piece on a different level and then combining in Photoshop. Then I will print it out large-scale and do the finished artwork on illustration board.

Why I don't like the ocean.

Don't get me wrong, the ocean is really pretty. But it's damn scary. Deep, dark, and filled with sharp, pointy things. And that's just counting the rocks.

Even the dolphins have saw mouths. Dolphins. The deeper you go, the darker and uglier things get. Oh, no, wait, what's that beautiful phosphorescent glow? The ugliest, sharpest looking fish ever. His mouth is where sewing needles come from.

It makes one feel small. That's how the internet is. I just got done looking at blog after blog of artwork. I realized that it didn't matter how big a fish I could ever be in the illustration world, I would still just be a whale among whales. One more fish in a never ending, scary blue void. A pretty one, of course, don't get me wrong...

I need to practice swimming a whole lot more.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

More project?

Do I have too many projects on my plate? Well for a guy with no freelance work, no. I got plenty. Plus one: I Muse. She is one of three in the final composition. The other two will have a phone and a laptop, respectively. They will all be sitting in or about an apple tree.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

New piece

This is a piece based on my poem the Pillow King. Two of these show me trying to do three point perspective on a larger scale than i should have... heh.

Each board has one of the perspective points on it. I didn't have a yard stick either, so I spent alot of time measuring and remeasuring.

Could have saved myself alot of hassle by just doing the perspective on a small scale and then blowing it up to the painting's size. Oh well, live and learn.

Here's the poem:

The Pillow King is overlord in both fools and dreams.
Swimming those sweet currents of the ink black nocturne streams
Eats he up the starlight with his boiling hungry shroud
And to me he lends a dark hand, as he speaks silent and aloud:

"Come, come, sweet songbird,
We have such things to see
Fly, fly, my wonder,
In my kingdom, you are free.

"Close your eyes and journey, we must cross the night-time sea
We'll meet the Moonlight Queen and seek her orchard trees.
Grand branching ancient woods, thick with sparkling fruits,
Perhaps she'll let you venture, and step among their roots."

And with that he pulled me through the bottom of my bed
Falling, drowning, weightless in the shadows of my head.
Racing he, through earth and core, and out her other side
Landed we upon the sea of the blackened heaven sky.

A silver fish our vessel, tracing each dark cloud-reef
The earth is now our canopy: cloud countries in relief.
I ride beside the Pillow King and drink the drought of sounds.
Ancient rumblings from the deep, and again his song resounds:

"Come, come, sweet songbird,
We have such love to live
Fly, fly, my wonder,
And take what's yours to give."

And at the shore of my kingdom, look you at the land,
built of hope and virtues with kindly earnest hands.
And looking at the earthsky, see your home above
A cold and distant city-star, which would you rather love?

"Come, come, sweet songbird,
Now join my quiet land
Seek, seek, my wonder,
And sift away your sand."

Your lover stands beyond the light, at the edges of the beach
The one you always sought for, now in easy reach."
'Join me now my darling!' Joy is the song I sing.
But low intones the somber voice of the tyrant Pillow King:

"Come, come, sweet songbird,
You can love but never cross,
Seek, seek and wonder,
For I am the everlasting lost."

The Pillow King is overlord of both fools and dreams.
Swimming those sweet currents of the ink black nocturne streams
Eats he up the starlight with his boiling hungry shroud
And for those hours of his reign, I cherish all I've found.
But neither his grand enticement nor the riches at his hands,
Would make me join his kingdom for I belong to sun-kissed lands.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Project: Ressurection

I looked at some old paintings I never finished and decided to retool them. Progress shots soon!


So the composition is supposed to be vertical. So there.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Made some changes on this guy. Though it's been awhile, so maybe you've forgotten how he looked in the first place...


Also an oldie but a goodie, this one I never showed the final of. Cover for Fahrenheit 451. Still a poor image, though. This one is tough to photograph because it has a lot of gloss in it.

old cowboy, new picture

I finished this guy a while ago, but I wanted to put better images of my paintings on the web. So, there.