And More Presidents

Miami Herald, Uncle Goose Toys

Continuing to work my way through the presidents for an upcoming ‘wooden blocks’ project. So far, the hardest ones have been the ‘C’ presidents, Carter, Clinton, and now Coolidge (took me three attempts to get Coolidge right). Also, getting to the point in the list where I’ve got several ‘bearded’ presidents in a row. Why don’t we get presidents with facial hair anymore? I think Obama needs to grow a goatee.

Earlier this week, I had another project for the Miami Herald, this one on the effect that the health care reforms may have on Florida’s economy.

Spring into Summer

Barrons, ChronicleHE, Miami Herald, WSJ

The illustration above was one I did for Barrons over the past couple of weeks. This one had to do with Jewish ‘lost swiss bank accounts’, and was one of those that I was pleasantly surprised with in the finish product, not being all too pleased with the rough concept in the early stages of the job. Below is an illustration for the Wall Street Journal, another of those ‘health care’ spots, this one on snake bite remedies.

Above is an assignment for the Miami Herald from last week. Below is an illustration for the Chronicle of Higher Education from around the same time. More ‘shaky economy’ concepts, which I have been doing a lot of over the past year, but there seems to be a few glimmers of hope, as the two illustrations below that seem to portend (another one for Barrons and the Journal, respectively). Been a long time since I’ve drawn a ‘bull’ in anything other than a submissive pose.

2008 into 2009

Barrons, ChronicleHE, Miami Herald, WSJ

Kept fairly busy over the holiday season, most illustrations still having something to do with the current economic mess in one way or another. The above ‘wrestling bear and bull’ illustration being for the Miami Herald (another of my newspaper clients who have been in the news recently, as one of the prime examples of the ‘struggling newspaper industry’), earlier this week. I also had a few ‘new years’ themed illustrations for the Wall Street Journal, which are pictured below.

This was probably an assignment that had thousands of brethren throughout the printed world this past week, and would be interesting to see them all collected somewhere.

For Barrons this week, I had an illustration regarding ‘hedge funds’, and the thrust of the article was that even though these funds have gotten a bad name, there might actually be a few stable ones that have survived the recent melee that might be worth taking a look at. (pictured below)

Below that, are a few illustrations I had for the Chronicle of Higher Education this week. These were concerning the economic meltdown’s effects on the education world, and since the two articles were trying to be an optimistic ‘call to action’, I thought that a faux ‘propaganda poster style’ might be interesting. A little different approach than I usually try, and the second one definitely turned out better than the first (once I had worked out the bugs).

Well, 2009 is finally here, and this marks my twentieth year in the freelance illustration business. I’ll be going over the previous year’s output and putting together a ‘best of 2008’ collection (and perhaps a ‘best of the 2nd decade’ might also be in order – that is, if I can stand looking back that far).

Mid-July Work

Cruising World, LA Weekly, Miami Herald, Newsday, WSJ

Heard from an old client this week that I haven’t had a chance to work for since early this year (their art director and my ‘usual contact’ was given ‘early retirement’ in January), Newsday, the Long Island Newspaper. This illustration assignment was for a sunday section cover to accompany an article about Alzheimer’s patients. I took advantage of my Dad staying with us this week, to use him as a model for one of the characters (my wife stood in for another one, and the other two were from other sources). I was quite pleased with how this one turned out, both from an illustrative, and from a conceptual standpoint.

The previous week, I had an assignment from a new client, Cruising World Magazine. I was tickled to get this one, being a sailing enthusiast myself, but also a bit nervous about how much attention to technical detail it would ensue. I was given lots of handy reference to the boat in question, however, the angle at which I chose to draw this boat, was the one angle not covered in the reference photos, so I had to do a bit of guessing and camoflage at the same time.

Had another assignment for LA Weekly this week. This was a book review for a murder mystery set in the Hollywood hills, and I had a bit of fun with this one. Originally, I was going to use the ‘hollywood sign’ with a single woman’s pump in the grass, but after sketching out the undulating letters on the hillside, I felt that a reclining woman’s figure would fit there better. One of those rare occasions where I did the figure without any photo reference.

The above ‘three panel’ assignment was for the Wall Street Journal this week, something to do with possible economic scenarios that could play out in the near future. The illustration below was a full page assignment for the Miami Herald that I did sometime in the middle of last week, something about credit card debt. Of the two sketches I submitted for this concept, I actually preferred the one that didn’t get chosen, and may finish that one up on my own when I get some free time.

Summer Doldrums

AHMM, Barrons, LA Times, Miami Herald, WSJ

Still keeping fairly busy, but you can tell that summer is here. The above project was for an article in Barrons about avoiding ‘committee investing’. Originally had goldfish in the sketch version, but they wanted something a little less ‘cute’. I was mostly just thinking about keeping it colorful. Bluegills were a nice alternative. Probably pointless though, because there is often the chance that the finish will print in greyscale. A little ‘T&A’ for the usual ‘health care’ spots for the Wall Street Journal (pictured below). The first one was about cellulite removal devices, and then a tricky one on breast self exams, but that they didn’t want to actually show a breast.

I had another illustration for the Miami Herald a few weeks back, this one about rising gas prices. Below that is another fiction assignment for Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. This one was set in a New Orleans brothel sometime in the late 1800s. A bit tricky on the police costumes, as I had no reference.

I had another op ed graphic piece appear in the Los Angeles Times last week. This one was a humor piece on the ‘christian license plates’ available in South Carolina. One of the plates is pictured below, and more can be seen in the link here. There were actually a few more than these that didn’t get used. This was more of a ‘graphics’ job than an illustration assignment, dealing with typestyles and layouts, something I really don’t feel comfortable doing.