Friday, November 18, 2011
Monday, October 17, 2011
I always loved the 1977 animated "The Hobbit" from Topcraft. I can't find many specific details on the creature design but the crew included Toru Hara, Tsuguyuki Kubo, Hidetoshi Kaneko and Kazuko Ito whose work you might recognize in Thudercats among others.
Speaking of cats, I really loved how many Tolkien creatures appear feline in nature in Arthur Rackham Jr's version of the Hobbit. Smaug especially resembles a cat, but still withholds certain reptilian features of a serpent or crocodilian head shape.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Monday, September 12, 2011
This is a panoramic image of the mural I just completed for the Living Arts and Science Center, a wonderful organization that among other things, has a yearly exhibit in their discovery room. This years exhibit is entitled "Amazing Animal Adaptations", and I was honored to be asked to paint background images for the different biotopes in this exhibit.
Please try to visit the exhibit in person, their is a beautiful Iguana who I had the pleasure of adding some home decor for! Also take a moment to read the artists statement and acknowledgments as well as looking at the pictures.
"""Since childhood I’ve been drawn to the point where fine art meets scientific illustration. As a youngster I loved looking at detailed illustrations of prehistoric creatures much more than the typical photographs of living animals. This fascination did not diminish in adolescence and the original nature artwork always seemed to hold my interest, whether it was from a publication or on the wall of a museum. Art has always held a power of information for me, as a viewer and creator. When creating the backdrop murals for this current exhibit, I was delighted to be able to put this passion to use.
I am very honored to be able to participate in the creation of the Animal Adaptations exhibit at the Living Arts and Science Center. Without the assistance of all the Staff at the LASC this would not have been possible. I would like to also commend the creative talents of the exhibit designers Katherine and Tisha, who gave excellent art direction on incorporating the painting into the exhibit. I can now say that I have had the pleasure of painting an Iguana’s cage in the colors of his rainforest home!"""
I would also like to thank Heather Lyons and the Board and executives of the Living Arts and Science center for commissioning the mural for this exhibit. Of course I would like to thank Katherine Bullock and Tisha Weaver for creating such an awesome exhibit. Finally I would like to also thank LeAnn Jenkins for lending me her ladder and Elaine Quave and Steven Littrell for volunteering to open and close the facility when I needed to work late. Without all of their help I could not have completed what I think is one of the most interesting applications of painting and display of my artistic career.
Thursday, September 1, 2011
Rasterizer is the title and name of my entry for the D-mag comic book themed mascot contest.
I created Rasterizer based on my love of photoshop and digital painting and the rasterizor represnets that love of artistry and it's strange juxtaposition aside digital technology. Can a robot create, can it think? Or does the machine just speed up our own human creative potential?
I began with a rough sketch I did in pencil and paper then moved into a digital painting in an 8"X8" template I use in RGB. I borrowed some techniques from some of my favorite 'robot and mecha' artists Feng Zhu and Doug Chiang for rasterizor and also had a great time using the awesome brushsets from concept on a Mac which was recommended to me by Patrick Rodes, a very talented former pupil of mine.
Here are some details about Rasterizer, I hope you enjoy.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Friday, August 5, 2011
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
A little further along, I have changed the livery, started a background, and focused on a single aircraft.
I'm starting this post off with the first step of my P-47 painting with this first image being the beginning of the coloring and inking of the original pencil drawing I was given by my friend.
Sunday, June 26, 2011
My interpretation of the terror of prehistoric North Africa! The most complete skeleton was destroyed during WWII in Berlin but the sketches and measurements remain. I have developed the animal around a lowland, valley, river/wetland lifestyle. It is commonly believed among many academics that Spinosaurus was likely a scavenger and fish/aquatic critter eater and was not likely to have been a swift chase-down predator. I made the tongue of the animal blue to reflect a possible lure for fish and other aquatic creatures to within snapping distance of the creatures mouth. I also made the sail a colorful display as well as an air conditioning device that is also a possibility commonly discussed among the scientific community.
I had the distinct pleasure yesterday of enjoying a walkaround of 2 of the United states Navies Finest Aircraft, the F/A-18 Hornet, or "Rhino". This is the new Top Gun, this is the new ultimate machine of Naval Aviation. What is even better is meeting the persons that make this entire system function for a celebration of 100 years of Naval Aviation.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Monday, June 20, 2011
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Concept was not mine, it was a glamor shot taken by a friend a while back, I just added the hood and robe. I needed to do an illustration of a figure, particularly the face just for practice. I tried to limit my time to just a few hours (<3). I'll admit it, I did a little tracing OK, so what! Just kidding, I am trying more and more to move away from tracing and using the reference material in the proper way. I didn't focused my main attention on the face and this is actually my first study using the Grayscale first, then color overlay. Hope you enjoy it.
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Monday, May 16, 2011
Monday, April 18, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
This fine specimen lives at the Salato Wildlife Center about 30 minutes from my hometown. I watched it (I have yet to inquire if it is male or female) fohttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifr several minutes and took numerous photographs while it made interesting chirps.
I wanted to select a particularly stoic and regal pose. I used lots of custom brushes which were similar to those taught by David Nash at his workshop 'Pushing Pixels' in Cincinnati. This was also my first go at using some of the new realistic paintbrushes in PS CS5. I intentionally made the background vague as this is a portrait piece. Feedback is welcome.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
These are three small 12X14 one day oil paintings of some local wildlife at the Salato Center.
I recently had a discussion with extraordinary wildlife artist Charles Alexander in which he gave me some great advice on many things but one I spurned into immediate application was to only use my own reference photo's. This at first seemed like some hard advice to follow, It's not always easy to get photo's (especially good photo's) of critters you really want to photograph. This can result from expense of equipment, to time involvement, to access to locations, all of which are challenging for me. So to make up for what I currently lack in free time and extra cash for a safari with a Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L IS USM with extender, I had to improvise and compromise.
As it turns out, I am quite fortunate to live in a state of the union with a bountiful abundance of natural beauty and a great Fish and wildlife service system. Salato center serves as a Visitors Center for the States Department of Fish and Wildlife and is located only 30 minutes from my home in our grand old capital Frankfort.
The photo's I ended up using for these paintings came from just walking around hand held in the parks excellent trails and also from their exquisite indoor bird feeder viewing area. I attended the Backyard Bird Count event there and I think we listed over 20 species, although I didn't get excellent photo's of all the birds.
What I am beginning to accept is that to be a real wildlife artist, you must also be (or have access to) a real wildlife photographer. Working with any budget, I am putting to the test this theorem of using my own reference photo's, the Idea of which I like because it requires you to actively seek out your subject. you are forced to get to know them, study and document them, and this can only serve to improve your work after gaining a familiarity with them.