Oscar Poster 2015

AHMM, Oscar Poster, WSJ

Well, it’s that time of year again. Each year, my brother throws an ‘Oscar Party’ at his restaurant in Chicago, and for the past 11 years I’ve done a commemorative caricature poster to give to him. Two weeks until deadline, and I had some free time today, so I took the opportunity to finish this one up. Usually I have some favorites that I make more prominent than others, but this year I just don’t have a horse in this race, so I arranged them fairly conservatively with relation to each other (‘best actor nominees’ on the top row, ‘best actress nominees’ on the next row, and the supporting actors and actresses crammed into the bottom third along with a few ‘best picture’ and ‘best animated feature’ nominees that didn’t have any actors singled out). I think the most challenging one this year was Julianne Moore, with Edward Norton a close second. I’ve done Meryl Streep so often over the past decade, that I don’t even need to work from a reference photo anymore (other than for a costume or makeup). You can see the previous ten posters in this series in this gallery.

Meanwhile I also had a few illustrations I finished up for the WSJ and for Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine last weekend, and they can be seen by clicking on the thumbnail links below.

Into December

ABA, WSJ

Started work this week on sketches for a new Young Readers book, and also did the above (right) illustration for the WSJ and the above (left) illustration below for the ABA. (click on each to see a larger version)

Thanksgiving Eve

WSJ

wsjweb

Finished up this cover illustration for the Wall Street Journal this afternoon, and earlier in the week finished up a book project for Baker Book House. Feeling accomplished and ready to relax and celebrate Thanksgiving with my family in Chicago, and then rushing back on Friday for a show with the Jukejoint Handmedowns. Happy Holidays everyone.

Thanksgiving

Baker Book House, WSJ

Finished up an assignment for the Journal this morning, pictured above (click on the image to see a larger detailed version), and I’ve also included the rough sketch for it below.

Otherwise, my work this month has been primarily finishing up a book project (a sampling of the 40 or so illustrations pictured below).




Where Did September Go?

Barrons, music, self portrait, US Catholic, WSJ

Blink, and you miss it. September has come and gone, and it seems we have gone right from late summer to leaves turning and chilly temperatures. I had a few short vacations this past month, and I’m also in the thick of a couple book projects, so the time has sort of gotten away from me. We had a nice time up at the Wheatland Music Festival early in the month, and then we had a beautiful week in Ireland during the middle weeks, but here it is the last day of September and we will be starting the fast downhill ride into the holiday season before long. In the meantime, I have a few projects to share. The illustration above was one that I did for Barrons last week, and below is an illustration for US Catholic that I finished around the same time. (both of these came in during the Ireland trip, so I was very grateful for the flexibility of both these clients in giving me a little extra time on the deadlines)

I’ve also jumped headfirst into the two aforementioned book projects and hope to have them squared away in a month or so (contractual obligations won’t let me share any of that work until publication). Last Friday afternoon, however, I got a quickie rush job for the Journal (I believe it was the quickest I’ve ever turned around a job of this size), and it was a shame I only had an hour or two from start to finish, as I would have liked to put a little more work into this one. Normally, I would have done this sort of thing in Scratchboard, but the time constraint forced me to work in a much more expedient style. (pictured below)

Also, in my last post, I promised I would share a photo of the ‘contraption’ that I help decorate this past summer for the kids hill ‘musical instrument activity’. Below is a photo of myself, and the two engineers who came up with this device (which takes a tin can and crimps it to be used as a washboard — the gears and mechanisms are all contained in the box in front of the handlebars, which is powered by the child sitting on the bike, and just for fun it is also covered with horns and bells and whistles to make the whole process a lot more fun for the kids).