Saturday, December 20, 2008

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

I have a blog?

Self portrait in oils I did over Thanksgiving weekend. I have a LONG way to go but I'm really encouraged by how far I've come already from my portrait attempts at the Academy. What John English was trying to show me is finally starting to make some sense.
Anyways, yeah. It's been a while. Things have been a little tough lately, but like most struggles, if you manage to come out of them on top (and w/a clean pair of underwear) you'll usually end up better for it in the end. That's what I plan on doing. Already, things that once seemed bad have turned out to be blessings in disguise. Along with all that, I'll be getting back to regular postings. Another portrait is in the works. It may very well be of you! :O, not really.

Thursday, July 31, 2008


Yeah, I know I've taken forever to post something new. Been dealing with a few things, one of them being me trying to find a day job while having no car (aarggh!!). The above image is the last thing I completed while at the Illustration Academy. We were to do a portrait of a music artist according to a random letter that we were given. I got the letter 'D', so I did an illustration of Dangermouse (one of the guys from Gnarls Barkley). The pieced together records that he's playing was the main concept as he is well known for his 'mash-ups' of different artists such as taking The Beatles 'White Album' and mixing it with Jay-Zs 'Black Album' to make the famous Grey Album, which went on to be the most illegally downloaded album of all time, which has now made me write one of the worst run-on sentences of all time. Anyways, there's definitely more that could be done to this illustration to make it better, but I'm pretty happy with how much I've improved in such a short time. I can't imagine ever having the initiative of taking something this far when I was still a student at VCU.

This is a quick oil painting that George Pratt did for a demo during the Academy. I was lucky enough to end up winning this piece at the art give-away on the last day of the Academy. The photo of course doesn't do it justice. It was really amazing to see this guy just play with the paint.
I went on a five day trip to Chicago the first week that I got back from Florida so not much has gotten done yet. The above picture sums it up pretty well. I plan on unpacking all the art stuff this weekend. Hopefully I won't go mad living at home for the next few months. I can't wait till I get back to good old Richmond.

Enough about me for a second tho. I've been meaning to post something about this for a while now: A couple of weeks ago, I was deeply saddened to learn that comic book artist/creator Michael Turner had recently passed away. Quite a few years back, I was lucky enough to get to meet Michael at Wizard World Philly, and it's true when they say how nice of a guy he was. I remember enjoying his early work on Witchblade, right around the time when I was discovering stuff outside of Marvel. Here's more info.


Sunday, July 6, 2008


This is an in-progress under drawing for this weeks assignment. Going to start adding color washes into it (and I may very well destroy it if I'm not careful). I was having too much fun rendering it was hard to stop. Hopefully some people will recognize who modeled as the cop when I took the reference, heh... :

Color study for last weeks assignment that I actually liked as much if not better than the final:

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Illustration Academy; 4 weeks in

First of all, everyone seen the new James Jean stuff? Yeeah.... O_0 <- ? And that's all I can really say about that, lol.

The Academy is frikin amazing, of course. Definitely one of the wisest decisions I ever made. As far as learning goes, it has already been like 2 years of VCU compacted into 4 weeks, probably more (not to rag on vcu). It's also been pretty intimidating at times since there are a TON of talented students here. Florida humidity really sucks!
Here's Barron Storey talking to students after a demonstration. He's the best there is at what he does. And what he does is absolutely insane. As informative as he is entertaining:
Jon Foster painting Tesla during pink shirt wednesday. Definitely one of my heroes and also just a really good guy:

Mark English demo with instructors Doug Chayka, John English and Brent Watkinson in the background. We've been learning so much from these guys that it occasionally makes your head hurt:
Gary Kelley doing a monotype (and it looks like Brent is throwing up in a trash can):

First assignment. Everyone was limited to flat shapes and color with no rendering. This was so we would focus on assembling an image with the focus on the 'design' of the piece, as to not try and cover a shitty composition with nice drawing and or other 'tricks' (not that that would work anyway). It's simple, but it was actually pretty difficult. We're given the assignment on monday and its due the following monday morning where it is critiqued by the new guest artist and faculty. After all the process work, most of us don't start on the final until friday or saturday. Done in acrylic and about 95% done:
Pratt gave an impromptu painting demo today and it was awesome. Sargent study I was doing this week during lecture week:

The assignments start up again tomorrow with Chris Payne. Ta ta for now.

Monday, May 19, 2008

"if THIS was SPARTA!!!"

If this was Sparta, I would cast this crying baby at work into the Spartan pit of death.

Alas, I may have only two shifts left(hooray!), but hearing-loss lasts forever. :(

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Update: *I'm done. :O

Some exam stuff, or at least what I feel like showing. The first two are from the story of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Used gouache, acrylic, oils and some digital. Had fun experimenting:

Concept sketch about the Boston priest who was recently in court for stalking Conan O'Brien. Didn't quite nail the likeness. The final had his hair much more exaggerated but overall it didn't really turn out well.

Photos from Senior Studio taught by Sterling Hundley. The class was about marketing yourself and how to actually put together your own 'unique' portfolio. Lots of good stuff was learned and even if I'm not ready to make that jump yet, it will all come in handy later. Some of my older work is featured in them:
And then this, just because it's cool:

Monday, May 5, 2008

Comic Relief

Exams are kicking my ass. Here's something to help me lighten up. Enjoy:
This guy is sick and twisted but also very clever. You can see the rest of his stuff here:

Monday, April 21, 2008


Was gonna wait to post this, but what the heck:
These are the goals for myself as I enter this post-college and Illustration Academy era in a couple months. It is mostly a place of training and learning while I hone my craft and get to a more professional skill level while friends and family are yelling at me to do something with my life because I have this magical 'college degree', "oooOooh". It shouldn't be too hard to get a lot done while I'm living in Chicago since I don't really know anyone there. Anyh'way, I want to enter a more specific field of illustration. In order for all this to work, I will have to give 200% and really put my heart and soul into it. I will accomplish the following goals somewhere in the time frame of Aug 01 2008 - July 01 2009:

1. Stable living/working conditions.
(I will need a job that pays the bills and also leaves me the time and energy to come home to something I love. No kitchen jobs where all I want to do when I come home is have a beer and take a nap. Something with benefits is ideal.)

2. Enter next year's Spectrum and get in.
( I know what you're all probably thinking. I definitely realize the odds of getting in aren't all that great at the moment and that everything is OK if I don't get in. But for now, I'm going to keep those thoughts at the very back of my mind just so that I will work my butt off as if my life depends on it. Would it really benefit me to think about it any other way? Would it help me at all to think that there is no way that I could do it? I think thats an easy one. Even if I don't get in, which is likely right now, its mainly just a goal that will motivate me to spend hours on hours of time improving. Either way, its win/win.)

3. Promote the hell out of myself on the forums. (ALL of them)

4. Get work published in ImagineFX.
(while submitting to any other publication that could potentially show off my work)

5. Website

6. Hit the Cons and submit portfolio.
(get out to the conventions and submit to all the studios and publishers I want to work for.)

7. Achieve the physique of Jason Stathom.
(stop laughing. I know where you live.)

8. No more 'run-on' sentences.

I could get more specific with each of these but I think that will do for now.

and begin...

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Jeremy Vickery

I'm currently watching a Gnomon dvd called Practical Light and Color by Jeremy Vickery. Pretty good overview of lighting and color. This guy works and PIXAR and was charge of the lighting for The Incredibles, Cars, and Ratatouille. These are two quick sketches you watch him do on the dvd. The guy just pulls them out of his ass like it's nothing. Insane.
I was amazed and inspired as much as it scared me to death. Somehow I have to eventually get to this level at some point in my life. :O Better keep my nose down and start practicing it all now, cuz you know I'm not gonna learn it in school.
(because Biology is apparently more important...)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Goku has to go off and train with King Kai for awhile... :*(

Tis' the season to eat pollen, fa la la la la. My eyes are stinging. Damn yellow napalm.
I promise to post everything that I've been doing sometime soon. Coordinating my schedule and getting things done in the most efficient order is proving difficult.

And now, the big news:
I just found out today that, after I return from the Illustration Academy in July, I will not be returning to Richmond. The cards have been revealed and it looks like I'm heading west to the windy city of Chicago. My talented girlfriend was offered a job with a modern dance company up there and since I'm not held down by anything to stay in any particular place, I've decided to move up there myself. This is definitely a good thing but still very bittersweet since most people who have lived in Richmond for some time know how easy it is to get attached to it. It's gonna be difficult to leave friends and all the places that I love but I hope to return someday. Heck, it could've been Des Moines, Iowa. Hah. :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


I so wish I could go to the New York Comic Con this month...

School is really killing my love of art... I can't wait to leave.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Really not liking work today. I can't seem to go 10 seconds without having to break concentration, stop what I'm doing, and unlock the doors for people or answer the phone. Then I'm always glancing up every 5 seconds to see if anyone is coming to the door because if I don't press the 'unlock' button before that person tries to open the door and that person is holding on to the door handle, the door will never open even if I hit the button. A 20 second sign language battle will ensue as I try to tell them to let go of the handle. (This paragraph took like 15 minutes to write)
And since when did kids in elementary/middle school start drinking coffee? I'm listening to these two little girls talk to each other as they wait for their ride while one says "I hope my Mommy got me Starbucks!" And then she gets a text message from 'Mommy' on her cellphone and is excited cause Mommy did get it for her. I feel old now and I'
m only 23ish.

Friday, March 28, 2008


Just practicing some quick gestures that I drew from photos and comic books. Busy day with visitors from out of town then a dance performance at Grace St. Theater, so not as much done today. I know what I have to do now.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

"What would the successful version of you be doing right now?" - Bobby Chiu

The painting isn't going very well and I was really frustrated yesterday and this morning. Every thumbnail and composition that I tried to scale up on the final drawing just didn't add up to what I saw in my mind and I didn't know how to fix it. Rather that sulk and curse myself out like usual, I decided to turn on the Bobby Chiu podcasts and just started drawing early this morning. I felt like studying noses.

So even though I didn't yet achieve my goal of having a sweet illustration to show everyone today, at least I got something done, and I feel a thousand times better than if I had just said screw it and went back to sleep feeling depressed. It's a lot more obvious to me now where I could be in only one years time if I do this every single morning.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Sell Your Textbooks For Cash! YEAH!

I purchased a textbook from the VCU bookstore earlier this semester for 70 dollars. I tried to sell it back today and all I was offered was 10 bucks. VCU wins again.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter

Can Can Brasserie (French place in Carytown) has the best steak and cheese that I have EVER had. Ever.
Currently working on two paintings, one is due this Thursday so pictures then.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Nobody likes Jimmy Buffet except frat boys and alcoholic chicks from the South!!

Bought a novel at random today. I've realized that most of the time I'm thinking about things like bills, money, food, my future, and blah blah (all things that induce stress) but nothing to really exercise my imagination. Nothing that made me enjoy art in the first place. This book is just what I needed. Not only is the story full of fodder for my brain, the art on the cover is quite motivating. Not because I want to do illustrations like it, but because I think it sucks. If this guy could get work, then yeah. It's not even that bad of a rendering, its just stupid. The poses, the expressions, nothing seems to have been thought out. I dunno, maybe it was stock art from something else. This was in 2000, so perhaps the art director has changed since then:

Been frustrated with what I need to do as far as school assignments go. I feel that while I'm in school and in Sterlings class, my projects should be heavy on concept which makes me feel like doing fake covers to fantasy novels is too open ended. I dunno. :X
Also, some interesting developments with people lately. Some negative but mostly very positive. My peers around me, whether they be in my major or any other, who have been successful in what they do have always been the biggest inspiration for me. Even more so then the professionals that I've looked up to all my life. I'm tired and can't write coherently anymore. So goodnight and a big congratulations to Naomi and Jessica Oyhenart! (you guys kick ass!)

Thursday, March 13, 2008


I'm back from the west coast and it was pretty sweet. It was my first time over there and it really is true what they say about the weather. Didn't do too much drawing as I kept myself occupied with all the tourist attractions, although I of course could have done more. Got a really cool tour of the Warner Bros. studios and saw some actors from shows I've never seen. Just happened to be down there during a Blizzard concept art show at a local gallery. I was pretty bad-ass:

It was really hard not to spend money. I wanted to buy every Evangelion figure I saw.

These were taken from over 5000ft up during our trip to Rim of the World, although the pictures don't do it justice. It was actually a little unnerving driving up it with 1000+ ft clifts beside you. I've always wanted to see mountains like this.

I was able to pick up this really cool James Jean print at Gallery Nucleus (the Blizzard Show) for only 10 bucks!
And now I'm off to NYC tonight! PEaceoUt.

Thursday, March 6, 2008


Deep-sea sub in the oceans of Europa. Meh... I know the perspective on the sub is all screwy, but I blame it on the deep-sea pressure. Yeah, that's it.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008


Just some sketching this morning, which will now happen every morning. (haven't I said that before?)

Edit 6:30pm - The children running around my desk at work are driving me insane. I now want to play Duck Hunt. Weird...

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Heath is not nearly as good as Skor. If you think otherwise, you are ignorant.

In other news, my concepts are obviously still ahead of my application, which of course will take time to overcome, especially when using a medium that I really suck with. About human-trafficking (unfinished):

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

At least I'm learnin...

So painting isn't really my forte... yet. Especially when it comes to acrylics. To make matters worse, I decided to use illustration board with no tooth and had to do an image with three hands in it. Hands of course not being the easiest things to paint. (I think Michaelangelo said hands and ears were the most difficult) So yeah, maybe I was a bit too ambitious. And it shows. I've worked on it throughout the weekend, and even if I had an extra day, it would only improve so much. I haven't done enough painting so my knowledge is very limited. Was watching the Marko Djurdjevic DVD the other day and he was definitely right when he said you can't really overwork a painting. It's not that its overworked or that your bored with it, it's just that you don't have the knowledge of how to make it work. Oh well, we all gotta start somewhere.

Yes, it may be my senior year that I'm learning how to paint.
And yes, maybe if I work my ass off and paint and draw every chance I get from here on out, then I may be 26 by the time I'm good enough to get professional jobs. I'm almost 23 now so thats almost 3 years. So what if it takes that long. Like I'm really gonna care that it took that long when I'm however old and am finally getting illustration work. Of course not. If it takes that long then it takes that long. It all depends on how hard I work. I can never stop getting better at art, even if I live 2 lifetimes, and that is an encouraging thought. It all depends on me.

And now, a moment of zen: