Out with the Old, In with the New

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With the launching of my new website facelift, I’ll be moving my blog here to be integrated into the site. If you are interested in looking back over the past 25 years (and beyond) you can still visit the old blog (the “illustratorium”), which I’ll leave intact for now, but will likely be moving lock, stock and barrel over to this site eventually. Check in here for updates, news, latest projects, rough sketches and other items of interest.

Roughly Speaking

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It has been a while since I’ve posted any rough sketches to this site. I’m usually pretty secretive about roughs, as it is sort of like standing out in the street in your underwear, with all your secrets bared to the world. I’ve spent a lot of time on rough sketches this week for various upcoming projects, so I thought I’d take a handful of them to post here, with minimal explanation of what they are for.

I managed to finish up one of the book projects I was working on for the past month or so, earlier this week, and I found myself with a little extra time to work on personal projects. I’ve started work on this year’s Holiday Krampus Card (some of my earlier Krampus designs are available at my Zazzle Store on various bits of merchandise), and below is the rough sketch for this year’s design (I’ll be posting the finish in a few days time). My goal this year was to portray Krampus in a little ‘cuter’ vein than I have in the past, but from the looks of things so far, he’s looking even creepier than last year. I’ve also been working on some designs for my band’s new CD. Our next CD will be a collection of ‘Murder & Death’ themed songs, so I am toying with the idea of a ‘gravestone’ motif, and below is a preliminary design.

Chuck (81)

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Today’s portrait is another high school bandmate, Chuck, who graduated the year before I became a freshman, although he followed the marching band for several years afterwards and is the older brother of #66, and plays and sings in an ‘old timey’ band down in Florida. I did this one in oils, and tried to limit the color array to a certain extent. I may use this style for my blown covers sketch this week, as I came up with a concept around the same time I was working this drawing up.

CD Cover Design

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I had another cd design request for another of the bands I’m involved with. This group is more of a ‘midlife crisis rock and roll’ outfit, where I play the electric bass to songs mostly co-written by the leader of the group. I don’t normally like to get involved in projects that include typesetting and design, as I feel like I’ve been so long out of the loop in that regard that I no longer trust my instincts, but as this was for a friend, I just gritted my teeth and went to it. Above is the exterior package design (aside from a few minor alterations I’ve yet to take care of, like the spine lettering and moving around some type on the back), and below is how the interior of the package will look with the disc in place in the inner sleeve. (and the disc art is pictured below that) You can click on each of these to see a larger version.

Stamp Project, almost

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Well, I’ve been sitting on this image since last August, but I see now that the official stamp is now available for preorder, and will be released in early February, it is probably safe to post this. I got a call from a client who I’ve worked for on various projects in the past, on a Thursday evening as I was on my way to band practice, and he was representing the family of the subject of an upcoming postage stamp honoree, and they were in need of a quick turnaround portrait based on a bw photo they had. I did most of the work on Friday evening and Saturday morning, and most of the corrections were rather minor and were completed by Sunday after several conference calls. Months later, though, it turns out that the Postal Service decided on another artist to carry the project to the finish line (Here’s the finished product, available for preorder). I’m not too disappointed, its a bit different in style, more streamlined, and has the hospital in the background, which is a nice touch, and I’m sure the family is quite happy with the final result. Was an interesting couple days, was paid well for it during a particularly dry spell, and I was happy with the end result, and glad to finally share it here.