New Ink Art and Walkthrough: The Revenant

This week for Alphabeasts, which I’m now caught up on, I decided to try something different. With my computer being backed up and doing some maintenance, I thought I would try a larger piece than the others have been.

This week’s letter was “R”, and the first thing that popped into my head was “revenant”. Those with a sharp eye might remember a cover I did a couple of years ago, for Brian Keene’s book A Gathering of Crows. That book featured a number of stylized revenants, and I thought this would be a good time to revisit that creature.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: Q is for Qilin

Here’s today’s second catch-up Alphabeast art, for the letter Q. This is a qilin, from Chinese mythology, and something I found very interesting.

As a creature, a qilin is (from Wikipedia and others) a creature that’s described in a few different ways. Among them is a description of a beast with horns/antlers, more of a dragon’s head, and taller like a deer or giraffe even.

I thought it would be a good challenge to try and do this one a little differently than the creepy Peg Powler I created earlier (here).… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: P is for Peg Powler

In trying to catch up on life, especially while my computer is a bit busy, I’m finding that I can still work on ink art away from the normal spot. Case in point, today’s first catch-up Alphabeast art.

I had a few “P” choices to pick from, but this one stood out quite a bit. The Peg Powler (I know, it sounds like a suburban realtor) is quite a creepy creature. It’s a take on the “old hag” stories that have been around in mythology. This old hag creeps up, from under the water, to the side of the river bank, grabs a victim (usually a child) by the ankles, and pulls them under to their doom.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: O is for Onryō

The second Alphabeast ink of the day is a Japanese mythological creature known as the onryō.

If you’ve seen The Ring (or Ringu), even maybe The Grudge, you probably have a pretty good idea what a onryō is. An onryō is a vengeful ghost, seeking retribution for some wrong that happened to it during life.

The most famous onryō is probably Oiwa, from the Japanese ghost story Yotsuya Kaidan. Oiwa, before she dies, was given a poison creme that left her face, especially her left eye, drooped down.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: N is for Nightgaunt

A few different ideas went through my head when it came to the “nightgaunt”, for my latest Alphabeast. For those that don’t know, a nightgaunt is a creature that is present during night terrors.

Now, night terrors are the worst thing in all the world. Frightening, to the point that getting a night terror affects you for many days after. If you haven’t had one, then good for you. If you have, you have my sympathies. I’ve endured them all of my life.

A night terror (also called “sleep paralysis”)  is when you wake up, but you aren’t fully awake yet.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: M is for Mummy

Quite awhile back, when I was first getting back into inking, I created an ink based on the Im-Ho-Tep/Mummy character from the 1932 film version of The Mummy (see it here). The idea with that one was to work from a photo, something I hadn’t done much (if ever), to recreate the iconic face of Karloff’s mummy.

Since then, I’ve wanted to create a different mummy, one that didn’t rely on any photos at all. I’m getting confident with my ink work again, so I wanted to abandon the photo reference and just create something new.… Read the rest

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New ink art and Alphabeast: L is for Lampades

Continuing on the mission to make 2012 mine, I completed a second ink today (don’t miss the first one, here). It was a challenge, in more ways than one, but I think it turned out well.

The ink is of a Lampade, from Greek mythology. Lampades were companions of the goddess Hecate, and were nymphs of the underworld. They held torches, the light of which could turn someone mad.

I took a little liberty with the “torch” idea, preferring a more magical idea. The first challenge of the piece, with a torch, is how the light plays off of everything.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: K is for Krampus

The end of the year didn’t go anywhere nearly as well as I thought, art-wise. Of course, the whole year was… yeah. But this is a new year, and I have a lot of catching up to do.

Though I’ve been working on art behind the scenes, here’s the first posted one of the new year. I have a few to catch up on for Alphabeasts, and this is the start of the process.

I realize it’s not the holidays any more, being nearly mid-January. But I’ve wanted to try creating a krampus for quite some time.… Read the rest

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New ink art and Alphabeast: J is for Jikininki

I’m gradually starting to get caught back up, after a disastrous few months. I decided that I didn’t want to end 2011 with nothing completed, so I manged to kick out two pieces of art in the last couple of days. The first was the skatedeck art, The All-Mighty Dollar (see it here), and below is the second one.

This one doesn’t quite catch me up to the current Alphabeasts letter (it’s about to be “L”), but hopefully I can start the week with an “L” image. This one is for “J”, and it’s based on the Japanese mythological character of the jikininki.… Read the rest

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Alphabeasts: B is for Brundlefly

I missed the opening couple of rounds of Alphabeasts this time, so I’m gradually catching up with “A” and “B”. Today, I managed to get “B” out of the way, with an ink I’ve wanted to do for some time.

One of the films that has always inspired me (from a twisted direction at least) is the 80’s remake of The Fly, directed by David Cronenberg and starring Jeff Goldblum as the unfortunate scientist. I liked the film quite a lot, especially as it’s still the very definition of “body horror”.… Read the rest

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Alphabeasts: E is for Eloko

I’m having fun with the Alphabeasts project (visit http://alphabeasts.tumblr.com/ for more info), it’s making me really think about what I want to do for it. The creatures are all different as well, so it’s a good challenge to come up with different textures and ideas. On top of that, getting away from working with photos, while a good project on its own, has been good for my confidence.

This week’s creature is an Eloko, from the Mongo-Nkundo language. It’s a sort of dwarf creature, mean as all can be. Here’s a description from http://www.statemaster.com/encyclopedia/Eloko:

The Biloko [plural for Eloko] live in hollow trees and are dressed only in leaves.Read the rest

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New Ink Art: The Fox

My good friend Patrick Douglas has a new book coming soon, and I created a new art piece for him to use as a signature sheet. The book itself is great, and tells the story of an outcast girl who has stumbled into a lost tribe in a cave system.

Signature sheets, at their base level, just need to have a space for authors to sign, place notes, or even have numbering. Otherwise, they are pretty open to interpretation, from simple designs through highly elaborate designs. In this case, we decided simply to highlight one of the characters, a tribesman known as The Fox.… Read the rest

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The end of the sketchbook

In the last few years, I’ve done something regularly that I hadn’t in the previous years. I’ve started to complete full sketchbooks, with some kind of art on every page.

I’ve noticed that it’s a good time to go back and look through it, to see how things went over time. In this case, this sketchbook was started in June of 2010, and the last image was sketched in it today. Over that time it’s seen all kinds of sketches, from loose practice ideas, to sketches for published projects, and plenty of goofy items.… Read the rest

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Hotlinking – not as nice as it sounds

I’m sure most people are aware of this, but here it goes anyway. There are people on the web that, when they find an image on a website, just grab the web URL directly to the image and paste it into their forum/website/blog/whatever. This is called hotlinking, as you are not hosting it on your sites but stealing a bit of the bandwidth I pay for to show everyone my own images.

What that means is that there are an awful lot of people seeing some image on my site, but no one’s really seeing my site at all.… Read the rest

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Seeing it in a museum

I think it’s important as an artist to look at a lot of art, and in fact I love nothing more than to flip through the many art books I have on the shelf. Seeing different styles, different techniques, and just appreciating what others have done is a great way to learn more about art, and to think about doing it better.

Books are great, but to really see a painting I also think it’s important to get to museums. Seeing the real art in person gives you a different look, something that books just can’t do.… Read the rest

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