A bit of nonsense I illustrated for no good reason…
I acquire a lot of art books. I mean, a LOT. Most of them serve as inspiration when I just feel like getting into a certain mood before tackling a project. Others provide ideas for color palettes, lighting, or anatomy reference for animals and people, and still others help with period costuming (unfortunately, I have no access to a theatre company’s costume or prop department, so I make due with period films or period artwork for reference).
So my trek to the Comic Con is really to see what’s new in pop art and to hunt for new and inspiring art books (as I’ve stated elsewhere, Comic Con these days is less about comics and more about pop art, gaming, films, toys, with some comic stuff thrown in there to appease the die-hard comic fans).
In the past I made a beeline to Bud Plant‘s booth, which was a great booth for art books. Unfortunately, Amazon has killed small book dealers and Bud Plant, after surviving going completely out of business, has been reduced to a small table in the back, near the food area. It’s really sad, because I’ve purchased some hard-to-find art books from them in the past.
The other book-seller I make sure to peruse is Stuart NG, who seems to have a healthy business due to his plentiful offering of imported books (usually from France) which aren’t something you usually find on Amazon or in your average bookstore.
And then I may purchase a sketchbook or something from the many artists who are there to show their stuff.
So here are some very poor iPad pics of the stuff I hauled back home…
Oh, and I didn’t shoot a pic of it, but in case you were wondering, I got DC’s The Flash pin with the Con bag (for those of you who know to what I refer).
Frames cost a lot of money, especially when you have to have a custom sized frame made for an odd-shaped painting. This is why most of my paintings remain unframed. Consequently, I’ve stored a lot of them by simply stacking them against one another.
This raises a problem with oil paintings, because for some reason they seem to retain a certain tackiness — at least mine seem to have done so. Consequently, the oil paintings I did on canvas paper, which is essentially a coated paper with a canvas texture, haven’t fared so well. One of them in particular (which I painted for our kitchen but never got around to framing) I found to be completely ruined when pulling it out recently. Parts of the painting’s surface had stuck to the boards against which it rested and pulled away from the paper stock, which ripped large chunks from the painting. So now, maybe, some day, I’ll get around to recreating this painting… But I doubt it.
The lesson to be learned is, carefully store your art so that this doesn’t happen to you.
I did this sketch as a sort of study in mood for a character idea I had some time ago. Doing these little tonal/colored sketches often proves to be more fun than a finished, polished illustration. There’s something that gets lost whenever I do a clean illustration verses the rough that inspired it.
Ever find yourself sitting in a restaurant with a blank paper placemat or a table covered in white butcher-paper while waiting for your meal to arrive? Or maybe you’ve found yourself sitting in an office waiting for an appointment or meeting while blank paper sat there asking to be filled? Who hasn’t been placed on hold on the phone while holding a pen in your hand and ended up scribbling on a post-it pad instead of cursing the automated phone system (or maybe doing both)?
Well, like most artists, a blank sheet presents an opportunity to quickly scribble whatever comes to mind. I’ve spent many a product-development meeting ignoring the conversation and doodling caricatures of the people sitting across from me, sharing them with the guy next to me just to get a laugh (who hasn’t)?
In any case, I almost always toss those scribbles, but once in a while I’ll scan them before throwing them away. I’m not sure why I scan them, but the ones I did from my old job have served to bring back a memory or two, so I’m glad I kept them.
So here are some samples of doodling on the go. These are not works of “art” or meant for public consumption. Most are sloppy and poorly executed given the time I had to scratch them out. But in case you wonder what I do with that butcher-paper covering the table before I splatter spaghetti sauce all over it, here you go…
So the image below are caricatures of folks sitting across from me at our weekly product development meetings when I worked in the studio at Cast Art Industries. None of these doodles are meant to disparage anyone. It’s just a lot of friendly goofing around. These are all great folks.
The following are pages of doodles I did on either copy-paper sitting around or a pad on which I had to write device numbers while doing some side-work for a buddy.
So what do you doodle for fun?
A couple posts back, I shared some of Justyn Smith’s photos of some products River ValleyChurch produced based on the Go Kids artwork I created. After my wife saw all of the cool stuff, she said she’d like some of it and so I asked Justyn where we could purchase some of it. He was so kind as to ask for my address and offer to send us a box of goodies. Well, the swag arrived last week! Here’s a few pics of all the cool stuff Justyn sent us – Thanks, Justyn!
Plain Joe Studios commissioned me to illustrate a children’s book, Cyndy Squirrel’s Change Of Heart, in 2016. The book was written by Justyn Smith and Aaron Cole for the River ValleyChurch children’s ministry, Go Kids.
You can check out a flip-through video below:
Something I doodled yesterday just for fun.
So you want to get rich quick with art? Okay, here’s how to do it:
First: Throw away your paint brushes. You’ll never get rich with your own artwork. Some people are fortunate enough to hit the big time with their art, but that’s not me and it’s not you; you’re more likely to get struck on the head by a giant turd-meteor than you will finding great monetary success from your creative endeavors. If you’re able to eat three meals a day doing art, you’re better off than most. But if you’re reading this, you want to do more than eat. You want to be rolling in shekels, right? If so, go to step two…
Step Two: Steal the Mona Lisa. Hide it where nobody will find it while you’re doing a long stretch in a foreign prison.
Step three: Let’s face it, you’ll never survive in a foreign prison. Find the nearest dead guy, extract the metal fillings from his teeth, and use the metal to form a small spoon. (You may want to spend some time in the prison library to research on how to do this.)
Step Four: Start digging.
Step Five: After tunneling your way out to freedom, you’ll probably look like that Tom Hanks character that was marooned alone on an island and you’ll probably smell just as bad. Take a moment to shave and shower.
Step Six: Go retrieve the Mona Lisa.
Step Seven: Sell it. Of course, no one will believe it’s the real deal, so you’ll be lucky to get twenty-bucks for it.
Step Eight: Repeat steps one through seven until you’re satisfied that your bank account has reached that magic number.
Now go out there and make your dreams come true!