June is Busting Out All Over

AHMM, Carus Publishing, Children's Television Workshop, CRC

Aside from the usual clientele in June, I also had another ‘bible story’ batch to complete. Another 20 or so illustrations for a local religious organization’s curriculum, an ongoing 3-4 year project that still had another year or two to go. The above illustration is just a sample of the batch I worked on this month. I also had a fair amount of work for my corporate financial client, although I don’t post examples of these illustrations, due to the nature of our usage contract (when it expires, I’ll post them here). Most of these illustrations had to do with investing in one way or another, savings, retirement, portfolio planning, etc.

I had an unusual illustration for my long time ‘mystery digest’ client this month. This was a rare instance in which I used ‘greyscale’ in an illustration for this particular client. The story called for an investigator lining up a photo with a particular murder location from film in the victim’s camera, and I wanted to somehow differentiate between the usual ‘scratchboard’ that I draw, and a ‘photo’. An interesting experiment, but not sure it was all that successful. I never went back to something like this again.

Another semi-regular assignment that I do for a children’s science publication, is a ‘puzzle page’ illustration. Sometimes it can be in the form of a maze or visual puzzle, or sometimes it is just an illustration of a ‘story question’. I don’t quite remember the angle on this one, but it had something to do with various bird’s migration patterns (?).

Another children’s magazine, one I had done work for in past (but it had been a long time since the last assignment) called me up in June to illustrate a short piece about the weight of gear that a typical fireman carries to go into a blaze (weighing approximately as much as a ten year old child).

A Cartoony Kind of Month

Children's Television Workshop, Christian Home & School, Gemini Publications, Metro Detroit Parent, Newsday, Oxendine

This was one of those unusual months, where I actually had more cartoon assignments than scratchboards (not to be repeated again for the next 7-8 years or more). It sure looks as if I’m having fun this month, there’s a lot of sly humor creeping into a lot of the illustrations (also see the accompanying ‘cartoon spots’ entry this month), and I seem really at ease with the style, the linework and the colors.

The above illustration and the one to the left were two additional larger spots that I did for my ‘college lifestyle’ magazine client. Usually I just provided small spots for this client, so it was fun to stretch out a little and do something a little bigger and more involved.

Another ‘larger’ cartoon is pictured below, this one for a local christian parenting magazine, a full page assignment on ‘busing’.

I also had an unusual assigment from my agent for a michigan regional parenting publication (pictured above). Usually, I only provide black and white illustrations for this client, so it was fun to try something in color. This was about the over saturation of marketing towards kids, and I tried to fit just about any kind of toy I could think of into the layout. Some of my usual subversive humor hidden away here and there (and an annoying toy my son got for christmas the previous year I notice down in the lower left corner).

The illustration to the left was for a major children’s magazine publisher, and had something to do with ‘family sing-a-long software’ available for your home pc.

Another small cartoon for a different local parenting magazine is pictured to the right. I don’t quite remember the angle of this particular story (play time with your children, perhaps?)

Pictured below is an assignment this month for my east coast newspaper client. This one dealt with teen workers in the fast food industry.

Another assignment for the same client is below that, a piece on holiday weight loss.

Parenting Cartoons

Children's Television Workshop, Gemini Publications, Newsday

Had a lot of ‘parenting’ related cartoon work in August. The piece above, and the companion piece to the left, were for my east coast newspaper client, and had to do with packing, moving, something like that, in relation to kids in some way (getting harder and harder to remember some of these topics, nearly 8 years ago now). The larger one above was one of those fun ones that I like to do, where I can make it real busy and hide a lot of details throughout the illustration.

I also had a few small illustrations for our local regional parenting magazine, one on ‘grandparents’ (right), and another one having to do with ‘baby auditions’ for child actors and models (below left).

I had an assignment for three illustrations this month for a national parenting magazine (I think this one was for the ‘spanish’ version of the magazine), having to do with computers and kids, and software, and other related topics. It is amazing how quickly these ‘computer’ illustrations are already looking a bit dated. I used my G3 as the model for most of my illustrations during this time, and while it looked quite modern and snazzy at the time, it is starting to look a little bulky and retro to my eyes now (can’t wait to see how I was drawing computers back in the 90s).

Cartoon Project for June

Children's Television Workshop

Stumbled across another project that I did in June of 2000, that I had previously overlooked. This was a series of cartoon illustrations for an article in a national parenting magazine regarding ‘panicky parents’, mostly dealing with anxiety parents face when children grow up and go to school for the first time. This project was pretty heavily art directed as I recall, and many of the concepts were handed to me with little input needed on my end except ‘putting it down on paper’. These were much like the sort of cartoons I was doing for a number of other publications, but somehow, having little input on the concepts somehow put a damper on my enthusiasm for these. These were a variety of sizes, some larger, some smaller, and covered a wide range of topics.

Cartoon Assignment

Children's Television Workshop

I had a rather large assignment this month for a national parenting magazine. This involved rather rambunctious children and how to deal with them. The article opened with the large spread above, and then smaller spots of a similar nature were sprinkled throughout the rest of the piece. I originally had intended to put in my usual ‘pets’ (my cat Ripley and my dog Dinky), but after the first round of sketches, the art director requested a different type dog.

The spot below was originally much more horizontal, with the ‘speed cloud’ zooming across the bottom of a two page spread, but I’ve cut it down in size to better show the pertinent details.

Looking through the clutter scattered around the living room in the opening spread, and around the tired mother below that, I notice a lot of my son’s toys got included in the mix. Eventually the article goes beyond describing the ‘trouble with rambunctious kids’ and starts offering suggestions for ways to channel all that extra energy in positive ways. (rollerblading and dancing, as seen here – and note all the safety gear on the rollerblading kid and adult, all very specifically and painstakingly itemized for my drawing purposes) — I was probably really dating myself with this record player – I wonder how many of the readers were puzzled by this illustration (below). I know I should have used some sort of cd player, but I just liked the esthetics of the record player better.