New art, and revisiting the past

Just the other day, Thunderstorm Books posted their newest book, Bryan Smith‘s Grimm Awakening. I was lucky enough to do the cover art for it, which was a great thing for me because I also did the cover for the original version way back in 2004.

It’s not often that an artist gets a second shot at the same work, and coming eight years apart was fascinating. It’s a great story, and Bryan’s writing with the character of Jack Grimm has been some of my favorite writing of any story.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art: Yig, Father of Serpents

In getting ready for my Spectrum booth this coming May (check out the event here), I’ve been working out which pieces of art to bring with me. One of the ideas that came up, which I’ve had before, is to combine three of my smaller inks into one framed set.

I had two previous H.P Lovecraft oriented pieces, The Deep Ones and Cthulhucraft, so I decided a third one would work out great. After some research, I settled on Lovecraft’s snake god, Yig, first mentioned in his story, The Curse of Yig.… Read the rest

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New Ink Art and Alphabeast: Unseelie

For this week’s Alphabeast creation, I came across the description of a type of mean faerie, called an “unseelie”. Now, in the many descriptions I’ve come across, sometimes it’s described as the “unseelie court”, and sometimes as the creature itself.

In either case, the unseelie is seen as a very mean faerie, one that tends to be very dark as well. Sometimes they are mentioned as being evil, and other times they just go out of their way not to be so helpful.

For my ink art, I’ve decided to take the fully darker route with it (me?… Read the rest

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New Ink Art: The Thing That Was Bennings

Here’s a new Alphabeast creature, and an interpretation of a scene from one of my very favorite films, John Carpenter’s The Thing.

If you haven’t seen the film, go ahead. I’ll wait.

Back? Wasn’t that just awesome?

To create an ink of the creature isn’t the easiest, considering that it doesn’t really have one single form. So I looked at some of the great scenes in the movie, and one of them has always stuck out for me.

In the scene, one of the men at the Antarctic base, named Bennings, has become the unfortunate victim of the Thing.… Read the rest

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New Ink & Digital Art: Stranger

I’ve been a big fan of the film Dark City since I saw in the theater back in the 90’s. For awhile now, I’ve been considering doing some ink art of one of the creatures from the film. They are known as “the strangers’, and our hero (played by Rufus Sewell) has to go up against them.

They fit pretty well with the Alphabeasts idea, being aliens (or something) as they are, and so I went for it. Here is the ink version, 5″ x 7” on 140 lb. Cold Press (click on the image for a larger version).… 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 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: Tortoise Moment

For quite awhile now, I’ve wanted to do an ink of a large tortoise. I’ve seen them in various places throughout the years, and they have a great texture in their skin that I’ve wanted to try and work with on an ink.

Any time you have an ink idea with texture though, it complicates things. You only get black lines (unless you are doing a wash or something), so those black lines have to represent both the texture and the shadows. That can be tricky, and it takes a little more thought as it is being worked out.… 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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