Christmas in August

AHMM, Honolulu Magazine, WSJ

Started getting a few holiday pieces already in early August from Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. An amusing story about the ‘murder of Ebenezer Scrooge’, in which his sudden uncharacteristic holiday cheer turns out to be the result of a hallucinagenic poisoning. I was also approached by the same client to give them some artwork for a holiday greeting card, and I was given a lot of freedom in coming up with the concept and layout. I ended up portraying the magazine’s namesake as a grim reaper-ish santa and reindeer over a snowy New York cityscape. Both of these pieces ended up being a couple of my favorite pieces of the year, and a couple months later, I got a nice note from the author of the story, telling me how tickled he was with the illustration.

Also, around this time received a few small spot illustrations from the Wall Street Journal. The one to the left was to accompany a story about the cable industry (if memory serves). The one to the right was undoubtably about falling stock prices. I’ve done quite a few pieces to illustrate stocks either going up or going down, and they kind of blur together in my memory.
I certainly hope that I don’t recycle ideas, at least too obviously. The parachute scenario kind of rings a bell, and I’m sure I’ve been down this conceptual road before. Another spot illustration that fell around this time was another of my ‘dubious health care’ column illustrations, this one being about female examinations.
Sometimes these illustrations get a little goofy, and other times the subject matter is such, that a certain amount of sensitivity and tact is required. I don’t remember the exact topic, but I’m sure that this was one of those cases for tact and sensitivity.

Also during this period in August, I took an assignment from Honolulu magazine, one of three that I did over the summer of ’06. They were usually a little on the whimsical side, and I don’t quite remember the story behind this one, but it took a little reference research to come up with the accurate native costumes.

The Ides of March

America, Highlights, Honolulu Magazine, US Catholic, WSJ

A rare (these days at least) cartoon assignment came through in the middle of March from Highlights magazine (pictured above). I don’t remember the backstory on this one too clearly. The little brother wants to play wiffle ball with his big brother, but he doesn’t have the time for him. To the left is another of my ‘health care’ column spots for the Wall Street Journal. The illustration below, was another chance to stretch the old ‘cartoon legs’, this one for US Catholic magazine, and concerned getting along with your ‘fundamentalist neighbors’.

The spot to the right was another ‘chart accompaniment’ for the Journal. This was another one of those that had to fit in a rather strange sized inverted L space. The topic was something about crumbling infrastructure or perhaps just shaky times ahead for the markets.
The same client, different weekend, another ‘chart accompaniment’. This one about the housing market no doubt. Early rumblings about the following years’ ‘burst housing bubble’.
Plus I got a call from a new client around this time. Honolulu magazine needed a spot illustration about a local girl who tries out for the Jeopardy program. This would lead to a few more spots for this publication in the coming months.
America magazine approached me mid-March with a larger full page illustration. Something to do with a ‘call to arms’ over something or other. The ‘bullhorn’ seems to be getting a lot of use this month.