Saturday, December 5, 2009

More Sketchyness

Here's the last batch of the recent backgrounds I've been whipping up for my portfolio. There was a problem mailing it out this week when it was sent to the wrong zip-code, but the status is finally at "delivered" so I can breath a sigh of relief!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Shall we Dance?

I made some composition/value thumbnails while watching some of my favorite Fred Astaire films. I'll definitely be doing this kind of exercise again in the near future.

And here are a few tree sketches to show shape and variety.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Full Steam Ahead! Backgrounds HO!

I have a bad habit of only wanting to show fully finished colored images. So I'm trying to let loose a bit and post more sketches.
The color study of the aerial farm came from the plane ride back from California. I'm not a big fan of planes, but the impressive scenery outweighed the terror for most of the flight this time.

I've also changed around the look of the blog to better match my portfolio, and added a gallery section. Right now the coding is a little messed up so the images have been displaying washed out, but I'll be fixing that shortly.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Back From CTN Expo 2009!

I'm back from Burbank where I attended the CTN Expo this weekend. It was easily the greatest convention I have ever attended. With industry professionals everywhere you looked, and like-minded peers passing around business cards, you couldn't ask for a more creative atmosphere! I was lucky enough to be selected for a series of private interviews, and on top of that I had several of my favorite artists give me helpful critiques on my current portfolio. I'll be posting more (with pictures) soon of some of the highlights of the event, but for now I need to kick my art making into full gear! One of the interviews I had was very promising if I can deliver some fresh sketches of backgrounds before the start of december. I'll keep you posted if this opportunity goes somewhere!

Here's a quick composition done in about 20 minutes using a similar color scheme from an N.C Wyeth painting.

Another 20 minute composition, playing with brushes and angles.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Portfolio Additions

As you may have noticed my main website is currently down for construction, so I'll be moving a small gallery right here on the blog to house the portfolio temporarily.

This was a redo of a piece from last year, where I took the time to make the character look more like the puppet I had created. In the original drawing I think I went a bit overboard on the finicky details, and I like this simple version much better.

These are the results of a trip to the zoo and some visual research. The giraffe was meant to look like a small toy or sculpture. I'm still experimenting with flat/3D elements working together.

This weekend I'm heading off to the Creative Talent Network Expo in LA to see some of the industries best character designers, and some of my childhood heros. Expect a nice big post all about it when I get back!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Cooking Up Good Designs...

Inspiration can come from such unusual places! With a big recruiting opportunity coming up , I've been working on revamping my portfolio. I had to buckle down and really figure out what I want to do with my art in the future, and what I need to do to improve from where I am now. While I have found quite a few quality sources of inspiration recently, I found exactly what I was looking for.....on a cooking show.

In almost every episode Chef Gordon Ramsay turns around a failing restaurant using the same solutions. He creates dishes that are simple and honest, and buys only the freshest local ingredients. This is almost always enough to turn even the worst kitchen into a success. I started really thinking about how those solutions could apply to character design.

Simplicity: Not getting bogged down with fussy details. Everything should serve the main idea, and all the “ingredients” should come together and not fight one another. Nothing should get in the way of the overall opinion.

Honesty: The difference between a doodle and a sketch. Honesty is all about backing up your design with some form of observation and opinion.

Freshness: Always seeking out new ways to approach a project that keep you on your toes. Never getting too comfortable with the way you usually solve a design problem. You don't know when the next inspiring moment could come along, so give it every opportunity to appear.

Now I know I've been quite guilty of going against these theories in the past, but I'm hoping to approach all my new pieces with these goals in mind. Speaking of which.....I have a portfolio that needs attention right why am I on here!? More images coming soon!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


I thought it was about time to revive this blog after a somewhat extended summer break.

The wonky background is concept art for a story me and my roommate Sam are writing. (more on this later) After an ordeal this summer where I lost a bit of my artistic voice, it was really nice to make something so purposely flat and textual again. The character sheets were based off 40's actresses, life models, and a trip to the beach I took back in july (that poor woman with no chin). There's also a Charlie Chaplin snuck in for good measure. Expect much more here soon, with an inside scoop at what went down this summer.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Off The Path (In HD!)

I finally got around to fixing up my YouTube site to be a bit more professional. Since I had to delete my degree project from my old username anyways, I took it as an opportunity to get it out there in lovely High Definition.

While I was at it, I decided to upload an old classic from my Massart years. Me and my old roommate Ashley Sexton provided the voices:

And if any of you are Vimeo people, I've also added an account:
So please feel free to start building my views back up! (You know you want to)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


After five years the big day finally arrived. As of Friday I became part of the MassArt alumni association. A big thanks to all my friends and family for helping me along the way, and to the staff and faculty who made it a great place to be!

The last few days have been spent trying to get this summer’s work situation all figured out. It’s a scary time to be out in the workforce, but I’m feeling better now that I have a better plan for the year. Part of that plan involves a great deal of artwork improvement and practice here on the blog, so expect some serious art updates.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Promo Materials 2009

So this week was spent getting my new branding together. Of course it's going to change as soon as my website changes again, but it should be good for a few months. Here's some of the pile of final promotional packets before they were put together :

Here's a close up of the final design for the new business cards:

And on another random note, I had sylized an image of some trees in a cold looking woods and decided to do an autumn themed version, just to play with some various styles. I'm hoping to get into some serious personal artmaking as soon as our portfolio night is over, and in the mean time I am on the hunt for some full time work for the summer.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Degree Project Show

This monday was the day of the big degree project opening, and I'm happy to report that everything came together at the last minute. The show itself has tons of great work from this years graduating seniors. It's still up at massart till the 4th if anyone hasn't had a chance to check it out yet.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Yet another Degree Project piece. I wanted to do a close up of at least one of the puppets to show better detail when they're printed. The picture is meant to be very red in tone, so that each piece has a dominate color. I'll probably snap a few shots of the whole set up once it's all up in the gallery. Here were some of the initial sketches for the character. I guess he hasn't really changed all that much since the beginning of the year.

Friday, April 17, 2009

My seat is in the full and upright position, and my fingers and toes are crossed for luck.
Here are some of the final shots of my portfolio just before I sent it on a cross country adventure....Farewell my little green square!

And at long last, an (almost) finished degree project piece! Just a little more work on the eyes/ eyebrow area, and a few bits and bobs here and there with the background and color and it'll be all set to go. I've got a really big jump on the other two images as well, but this one is the closest to completion. The puppet itself is unpainted sanded clay. I added the textures/color in photoshop, and constructed a background the same way.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Well, The portfolio for the internship is finally delivered and out of my hands. I have some snapshots of the finished product that I can upload later. I really put it all on the table with this one. I even let other projects (degree included) fall by the side. I'm hoping that the risk paid off, but even if nothing comes from it I'm glad I went for it.

In other non-portfolio non-degree related news, I've decided to keep up my layout/background practice by doing several of these quick studies from photographs. The idea is that I'll try to capture the mood of the reference image, while taking creative license on the stylization.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The ol' portfolio is at the printers at last! I'll be picking it up tomorrow for final assembly and shipping. I'll probably snap a few photos of the finished product and post it up. Right now just getting my resume in ship shape to be sent as well. Hopefully I'll be able to go full force on my degree project once this is in the mail.

Expression sheet of my character Aldo from my degree project (Same guy from the Detour Cover/puppet head)

This one is about finished now. A little more blue in the background and a more resolved foreground.
A quick page of sketches to go beside my "global Warming" piece in the portfolio. I wanted to show silhouettes of different types of characters combined with some fresh loose sketches.
Many of you have probably seen this, but I get a real kick out of this article:
Can you guess these characters?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Jazz Hands

This is the most I've ever actually kept up with a blog. I mean..once a day? SHEESH! I suppose the motivation is coming from the need to keep track of my own progress as this deadline approaches.

So another day, another piece finished. This is the nautically inspired captain from my degree project. He's probably my favorite of all the maquettes so far, just based on his pleasant plumpness.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Just keep swimming....just keep swimming...

So I'm taking a short break from new image creation, and I decided to work some of my older pieces to fit in the new portfolio. There's some degree project, a little bit of character design, and then some crazy old lady life drawing. The deadline for this is fast approaching so I really need to bunker down this weekend and finish everything up.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Another day, another update.
Got a little closer to finishing the bear/kid layout in the market place. I'm going for a slightly different look than I normally have in the past. I still need to resolve a bit more of the foreground, and how to make the bear and kid stand out better against the backdrop.

Here's a design for the internship where I show process. I'm not sure about this one yet. I don't know if she's quite strong enough. I change my mind about this one every other day.

Monday, March 30, 2009

After looking over my images to put in my portfolio for the internship, I realized that I don't do nearly enough layout images. So here are the initial tests:
These were a nice starting point to get into the zone, but they're definitely not portfolio material. Colors are puke, and they're waaay to plain. Not to mention a complete lack in character.
So here was the next image I'm working with. It's a plump bear in a zoo. It's still in process, but there will be a little girl standing by his cage, and a few figures in the foreground. Much better than the puke-scapes.Here's a shot of the same bear and girl walking through a crowded marketplace. (obviously not done..WHERES DA BEAR?)

So anywho....more updates soon....

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Okay, so here it goes! My first blog post on my new website. Slowly I'll be compiling older posts into some archives for easier viewing of past works, but I figured it's best to just start this one off fresh from where I stand right now.

This week was spent doing major work on my degree project for illustration. Which consists of making several 3D maquette sculptures. I haven't painted any of them, but suggestions are more than welcome. Here's a quick preview:

In a flurry of work I am also working to complete a portfolio to apply at a big fancy internship. So it's full speed ahead on a few new pieces. Which included a redo of an older piece. Rest in peace universal clock tower set: