The process of new cover art and the grand feedback experiment

Last year, I created a cover for author Vincenzo Bilof’s Necropolis Now: Zombie Ascension. So, as is sometimes the case and something I look forward to, he asked if I could create the art for the book’s sequel, the now-released Queen of the Dead: Zombie Ascension II (go get it here).

Most of my year has been taken up by my art hiatus, from doing nearly any kind of art at all. I’ve done a handful of art pieces, as you can see on my site. But being away from it has had two interesting effects: my daily art skills have suffered, but my imagination has become sharper and sharper.… Read the rest

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Spectrum Art Show Recap Part 1: As an Exhibitor

Last weekend, I had my very first booth ever at an art show. It was at the Spectrum Fantastic Art Live show in Kansas City, itself a first-time event. I’ve decided to write about my experiences, but it will take a couple of articles to get it all in. This one is the first part, about being an exhibitor, and I’ll follow it up with being an attendee and how I feel things will go after this.

First, I just want to say that the Spectrum folks were great to work with.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Walkthrough: The Colossi of Memnon

For a very long time, since way back when I was a college engineering student, I’ve been fascinated with ancient architecture and stonework. Near the top of that list has always been the Egyptian statues known as the Colossi of Memnon, two massive representations of pharaoh Amenhotep III.

When I say massive, they are among the largest stone sculptures in the world. Each is 60 feet tall, on 13 foot bases. While you’re out googling them, make sure to check out all of the photos with the teeny, tiny people next to them.… Read the rest

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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 experimental artwork: Selene, Mediterranean

Being an artist, to me anyway, involves taking chances. Though I value consistency, there’s something to be said for experimentation. 

Experimenting with techniques and styles gives me a chance to explore areas I haven’t tried before, and really challenge the concepts of art. Not just in how I make things look, but the difference in procedures as well. To tread on unfamiliar ground, and attempt to survive it, is how I grow as an artist (and a person).

Case in point, my new piece below. I wanted to give a gift to the clients that commissioned me for my large acrylic painting, Selene at Bonifacio (see it here), and I thought a small painting of a similar idea would be a good.… Read the rest

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Creating the ink art: The Mouth of Sauron

I’m fascinated by creatures of all sorts, especially those that are a bit on the creepy side. Case in point, “The Mouth of Sauron”, featured in the extended edition of the film The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.

In case you haven’t seen the extended versions of the LOTR trilogy (which you should, they are fantastic), here’s a YouTube link of just that scene in the film. Of course, if you haven’t seen the film, there is certainly a bit of spoiler here, so if you’d rather watch the full film first please do.… Read the rest

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From start to finish: Christopher

I’ve been considering doing an ink work of something from the film District 9 for some time, and I finally decided to fit it in here. I managed to fit it in between two other commissioned pieces (call it a “break”).

I also decided that, instead of just an ink work, I’d have fun with it. I’ll probably still go back and do a normal ink work of something from District 9, but this one was fun.

This is the character Christopher from the film. Well, it will be when you see that I’m done with it.… Read the rest

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Creating a cover from scratch: Ray Garton’s Vortex

Despite the bad way that my year is going, I still manage to get some great projects by some wonderful authors. Case in point, I was given the chance to work on author Ray Garton‘s new book, Vortex, out soon from Cemetery Dance. It’s a great honor not only to work with one of Ray’s stories, but to work with an always helpful and constructive publisher like Cemetery Dance as well.

For the cover, I wanted something that showed the main characters. The trick of it was, the creature of the book was both a character the reader has sympathy for,  yet still very violent.… Read the rest

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From Scratch to Tarkin: Creating the new art

On Thursday, I posted my newest ink/digital artwork, of Peter Cushing’s Grand Moff Tarkin character from Star Wars. I decided today, while taking a break between art pieces (and while my internet is working) to upload this article about how it was created.

I like to post these kinds of articles for a couple of reasons. One, there people out there who’ve said they like to see the process, and I’m happy to oblige. For me, it gives me a chance to review my processes, and see where I might make things better.… Read the rest

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New art: Tarkin

I’ve been wanting to try and do art for one of the special days that come up. Certain birthdays of actors, or film release dates, anniversaries, that sort of thing.  So I took a little time away from finishing up some publishing work and gave it a go.

Today would have been actor Peter Cushing’s birthday, and I thought, since I’ve wanted to do an ink of him for some time, that I’d try it. It’s based on his character from the first Star Wars, Grand Moff Tarkin, who’s in control of the Death Star.… Read the rest

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My art on the walls of the local Jerry’s Artarama

My latest article for Apex Magazine (check it out here) is about, as an artist who likes being noticed, learning how to approach people. It’s not easy, and being a wallflower most of life it really becomes a challenge.

As the article I wrote discusses, putting that first step out can be difficult, but can be very rewarding. Case in point, on a whim I decided to ask about the art on the walls at the local art store (Jerry’s Artarama in Fort Collins, Colorado). My brain kept saying things like, “don’t ask about art”.… Read the rest

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New ink art: Mörder

I decided that I should take a break from inking monsters, and try something that has less texture to it. Texture is fun with characters, but I want to challenge myself by working with images that don’t necessarily have a lot of texture in the important areas.

Case in point, this new ink that I’ve now completed. It’s based on Peter Lorre’s character from the film M, and, though there is certainly a lot of texture in the piece, it’s his face that doesn’t have a lot of it.

Inking his face, I had to use very light lines, spaced fairly far apart (relatively).… Read the rest

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The New Art Blog: Assault on Belleau Wood

After a busy (and depressing) holiday season, I’m attempting to restart the art blog idea.  This time though, I’m going to work things a little differently. Instead of just a piece of art each week, I’m going to alternate on artistic ideas.  Some weeks will still be about a certain piece, other weeks about artists or books/graphic novels, and other various art-related themes.  Hopefully people will still tune in.

 

For the first of the new year, I’m talking about Frank E. Schoonover’s “Assault on Belleau Wood“, also known as “How Twenty Marines Took Bouresches” (oil, early 20th century).… Read the rest

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This Week’s Art: Ivan the Terrible

Ok, so my “little break” was more like a couple of weeks.  Add “extreme coughing from the lungs” to “Post-Las Vegas” and there you go. But I’m back, and this one is an interesting one for me.  It’s one of the first art pieces that I really took something from, especially in the extreme emotion.

This is Il’ya Repin’s Ivan the Terrible and His Son Ivan on November 16, 1581 (1885, oil on canvas, 79″ x 100″). The artist based it on a real event, involving (natch) Ivan the Terrible.  In the heat of an argument, Ivan stuck his son with his staff, mortally wounding him.… Read the rest

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The Return of This Week’s Art

I’ve thought about it, and not only are these posts fun but they help me grow as an artist.  In it, I pick an image from past art and give out my thoughts on it.  I’m not really an expert (though I have actually had the classes), and what I say is merely how I feel about the work.

Please let me know your thoughts on the art or other comments, and I will also be posting this on my MySpace blog as well. So, without further ado, here is the first of the new incarnation of This Week’s Art.… Read the rest

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