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Showing posts from 2009

Captain Kirk/ArtRage 3

I could have gone either way with the title on this one. Many of you know that I am quite a fan of a program called ArtRage and that I have been anxiously awaiting the newest version to be released. Well, the day finally arrived and I was able to get my hands on it late last night but I had to wait until tonight to start playing with it. I am still finding my way around the changed keys and new tools but I did manage to paint a picture rather quickly that I am VERY pleased with. The oil brushes are so much better as is the canvas selections and the blending tool is AWESOME. I basically stuck with what I knew on this but with much better results. Go get ArtRage 3!! It will set you back a whopping $80.00!! I can't wait to try the watercolor brushes!

The Ninth Doctor - Chris Eccleston

I still remember the day I read the news that Doctor Who was coming back to TV. I was floored. I immediately thought of how long it would take for it to be shown on American shores! Then I saw leaked pics of the "new Doctor". I was not happy. He looked like Fonzie with a short hair cut. What were they thinking?? What are they doing to my show??? I should not have worried. By the end of the first episode I was sold on this new take on the Doctor. Nothing was thrown out. No "re-imagining". Just Doctor Who as he should be. After the second episode, I was totally hooked on Eccleston as the Doctor. He was great. He was brilliant. He was............FAN-TASTIC!

The Eighth Doctor - Paul McGann

I have to admit a guilty pleasure among hard-care whovians, I like the 1996 TV movie. It's not perfect and after reading the book made about the production, it's a miracle it was even made at all. Now I don't like everything about it but to me, Paul McGann was PERFECT in his first (and only) outing as the Doctor! Usually it takes a few stories for an actor to "settle in", but that does not seem the case here. To add to the brilliant casting of the Doctor, is the inspired re-design of the TARDIS interior! For the first time it really did seem infinite and lived in. Now matter what you think of the movie, I firmly believe that the new, current series could not have been made without this happening first. So there!

Insomnia painting

So I have been up since 3:20, wide awake for some unknown reason. Was digging around the ArtRage site getting anxious for version 3 to be released (you need to go and check it out. It's gonna blow your mind!!) and I discovered some people doing work with just the roller brush since a squared off oil brush is not available (yet!). I was inspired enough to open the program and try my hand with it. I like it!

...but that opinion may change after some sleep.

The Seventh Doctor - Sylvester McCoy

I knew this one would be fun to draw. With a very expressive face and a fun hat! I admit that I didn't follow his outfit that he wore on the series from 1987-1989. I followed the one he briefly wore in the 1996 television movie just before regenerating into the Eighth Doctor. Purists may balk, but hey, Sylvester himself admitted he liked the movie outfit better as well. It has the same basic shape just made with better fabrics and WITHOUT that ridiculous sweater! It was covered in question marks for cryin' out loud!! I know, I know. How can I pick on the sweater after enduring the outfit worn by the Sixth Doctor. At least his didn't have question marks all over it. What the heck were they thinking???? If you still want the question marks,.........look really hard at the vest and hat band.

The Sixth Doctor - Colin Baker

This one was tough! What a suit!! I don't really know what to say about this doctor. I remember being excited that I would get to watch my first regeneration from one actor to the next but then.............I don't know. For a while I felt he was my favorite doctor but as I grew older my opinions change, as they do, and I started to really dislike this era. I think I am on the fence still. I know about all the drama that was going on behind the scenes now and I know that really affected the program and I totally love how Colin Baker STILL is enthusiastic about he program even tho he was fired from the role he loved. So that's it. Here is the Sixth Doctor in all his,, ..........glory??

The Fifth Doctor - Peter Davison

This one was really tough and I am waiting for someone to call me out that I may NOT have really caught Peter Davison's likeness. I think part of that is that Mr. Davison really has no outright distinctive features. No big nose, large eyes, curly hair, .....none of that! Plus he was only 29 when he started playing the part and doesn't even have wrinkles! I think the other part was that Peter Davison was MY doctor. They say you always remember the actor in the role when you find the program to be the one you remember the most, and he was mine. I was in high school and I was introduced to the show by my close friend, John Larkin. I never looked back. I was drawn in and I loved it. I wish I could talk to John about the program now that it is back on television. He probably will never even see this blog let alone contact me. Regardless, this one is for you John.

Here is my preliminary sketch all done on my touchscreen in ArtRage.

The Fourth Doctor - Tom Baker

I know this may be the most popular of the series which is kinda daunting looking forward. Maybe David Tennant will make up for it. Who knows. Pun intended! This one was a lot of fun and came about very quickly. This illustration also marks my first with my new computer (Thank you Wayne!!!). While it is not a pressure sensitive Cintique(?), it is a touch screen and I was able to actually do the "painting" parts using a real paintbrush right on the screen!! I even did the rough demo for this one on this from drawing to painting all with a real brush in my hand. You can see that one posted as well as that marks my very first "art" made with my new toy. I really hope you all like this one. Jelly baby anyone???

Another cereal box painting

So I have a stack of cut up cereal boxes covered in gesso waiting for me to try things out. Here is my second one of those. After my disappointment over my last post, I decided to dedicate a bit more time with the drawing of the figure first before painting. A novel idea, I know. I actually like the drawing of this one and the painting for the most part. Just wish I centered the figure better and killed some negative space more. The colors didn't really scan correctly either, the original looks better (color wise) than what you are seeing here.

Quick (...and crappy) Paint Test

I know it's a piece of crap, but I learned something here. I have a clear course of how to approach my next painting. From drawing to painting. Something to be said for that ya know. So, since this is a warts and all type blog, I feel obliged to share my failures as well. I actually painted this all in acrylic on the back of a piece of gessoed cereal box!

Cup of Joe

That's what Tim Rogerson called it at least. I did this on top of an old canvas just to paint something really. I am still on the fence with it even tho many people tell me they like it. Hmmmmmmmm.........

Playing with paint

I found a big piece of illustration board with an old drawing on it that was not worth keeping. I decided it would make a good support for experimenting with some paint. I gessoed over it all and then did two quick "paintings". On the left of the board I did a quick Mickey Mouse all in acrylic and then some colored pencil on top. I kinda like the look of that one. On the right of the board, I drew this dapper fellow with a sharpie and then laid an acrylic wash over him as an underpainting and then airbrushed some color and then applied colored pencil. I really didn't like this one and you can see I only concentrated on the face and didn't add anything beyond the washes to anything else. Got it out of my system tho.

Autodesk Sketchbook Mobile

Got the new Sketchbook Mobile app for my iPhone and have been playing with it. I really like it. For those Brushes users out there, you may want to check it out. I totally love how I can draw in this app. The pencil is so much better than the one in Brushes. I have to admit, that even tho both apps let you paint with layers, there is no layer opacity mode for Sketchbook. I hope this is added in an update because I seriously believe that is all it needs. I have not produced any great works of art on it (or ANYWHERE for that matter) but I have used it in lieu of a sketchbook on many occasions to even just jot down an idea or thumbnail to use later on. Here are some odds and ends.

Here is a quick sketch of Joe taking a nap.

Doctor 3.2

Just foolin' around with some illustrator brushes and such the other night and toyed with the inked version of Pertwee. Just playing really.

The Third Doctor - Jon Pertwee

Didn't mean to take so long to finish this one. Not that this one took longer than the previous two but just finding the time to sit and do it! This one was fun tho. More color than One and Two and getting the jacket to have a velvet look was cool. I think it looks like velvet anyway. He was not my favorite Doctor but I do appreciate all he brought to the series and he did, in my opinion, spell his name a cool way!


Out of the blue a few days ago, I thought "how can I do an illustration REALLY fast?" I came up with this simple method. I kinda like it. I like the expediency of it to be sure and the fact that is it 90% vector art. All I did was make a quick pencil sketch, ink it by hand, scan, vector trace and paint in Illustrator. Done! Took about 90 minutes each from concept to finish.

The Second Doctor - Patrick Troughton

Here is the finished version of the 2nd actor to play the Doctor on Doctor Who. Glad to have it finished and still in love with the process but I am wondering if I actually like the sketch better on this one. Hmmmmmm......

Update 5/1/11: Yeah. The sketch was better. Lost too much so I finally redrew the whole thing.

Pan's the Man

Finally painted and it's finally dry. I had this on my easel for almost a year it seems since paintings seemed to stop selling at the Disney Galleries. Right after I found out that I had actully sold the last one I had on property I began to paint again. Was nice too. I really enjoyed it. I really wish the scan of the finished painting looked as good as the original tho. It doesn't come close!! This one will be hard to give up since Pan is my favorite but you all know I need the money so I hope it goes quick. I managed to take pics of it with my iPhone while I was painting. Didn't really mean to track its progress but that is what I would up with. Just wish I had the underpainting and the background only stages captured as well, but I don't. Oh well. The final is 18 x 24, oil on canvas. Enjoy.

Glory Days

As I wait for my newest painting to dry in order to scan it in (and then hopefully sell!), I thought I would go back and re-explore a painting that I am not allowed (to date) sell. Mr. Incredible. I can't remember why I went ahead and painted it since I think I knew I could not get Pixar approval to sell it at Disney. I think I just really wanted to paint it for myself. I thought that you don't see enough of Mr. Incredible in his glory days, and I did like the blue suit better than the generic red one. I thought this is something you would find in his room of memorabilia. I am still very happy with the result and when I was just looking it over I found a preliminary drawing I had rolled up and slipped into the canvas frame. I have no memory of doing that and that is something I don't make a habit of but it was fun to see. I have included that one here as well. Enjoy!

Chris Eccleston

I had forgotten I had done this. And I think I have it on my website!! I tinkered with it a bit. I like the look of it now as drawn on grey paper with highlights add to it. Did the original drawing in my sketchbook a few years back but the additions were done in ArtRage.

The First Doctor - William Hartnell

Ok, so I took a break from breaking down the book I am working on to finish this one. I honestly didn't have much left to do. I like it and I hope you do too. I am really getting the hang of this method although I am still tinkering here and there. I left the painting parts more "painterly" in this one and I like that and hope to keep growing in that aspect of it. Let me know what you think.

8/21/09 UPDATE: Got a fair crit from my friend Jan so I slightly lowered the contrast in the sweater and removed some of the white from it as well. I am leaving the shirt stark white since, style wise, I decided that I would almost always leave it that way.

Miss Mindy Marshall

This is a post that I hope will continue to motivate me. I am a HUGE procrastinator and I often need a nudge to keep me going or have a deadline or goal to keep me focused. Yesterday I painted this pic of Miss Mindy Marshall for a book that I hope to complete. I have never attempted, let alone finished a book before but I figure anything is worth a shot right now and I REALLY like the story for it. Good thoughts everyone!

Doctor doodles

I decided I was going to do a pic of every actor to date who played Doctor Who in my new look. I am still thinking about how I want to show them. Do I want one pic each or do I do them all and compose them in a single image?? I don't know. Maybe both. You will just have to wait and see. Just for fun and to have something to post, I thought I would preview my first three sketches and with some b/w painting. All the painting was done in ArtRage and two of the three drawings as well. I was actually worried about showing them because I thought that the finished, full colored ones may not turn out as good. I think these have a certain charm to them and am anxious about moving on. I will tho. Promise.

The Dynamic Duo

I figured I would test drive my "new look" with some superheros. I normally would have just gone with Superman but for some reason I wanted to draw Batman and Robin. Who really knows why. This one took a bit longer to do but that might have something to do with having two figures and a backdrop as well. Plus my father in-law visiting and taking time off to have loads of fun! Anyway, the process still went rather smoothly and I am still really pleased with the results. Hope you all diggs!

Here is the progression.

Another me

I could NOT sleep last night. I got up not to disturb my wife (Mindy. See hon, I can refer to you by name. :) ) and went to my studio figuring I would draw until I got tired and then lay down on the sofa. No such luck. I would up drawing, inking, painting and uploading my new face in several areas. I would write more but it's just about time to wake Mindy (See! Two times!!). Good morning everyone.

The Duke

As I stated in my last post, I set out to try this new look of mine but with the added aspect of trying to keep a likeness as well. I am more or less pleased with the likeness and very happy with it as a piece all around. I may be biased tho since lately, nobody seems to be liking my work. I know times are tough and I need to keep things in perspective but I feel a bit beat up of late. I know rejection is a big part of being an artist, but I am going thru a LOT of it lately. Maybe I shouldn't be venting about such things here but I do find a cathardic relief sometimes from just writing stream of conscious style. Things sure seemed a lot clearer and easier in a John Wayne movie!

All Coming together

During a recent online search of artist representation, I came across,I believe, a British artist whose style really caught my eye. I looked it over for quite some time but I didn't save the name or image because I did not want to start directly copying his look. That was several weeks ago and finally last night I drew a quick sketch that I thought would be good for me to emulate based on what I remembered of it. I was drawn to it because it collected all the things that I like to use in my pics. Only I have been bouncing from one style to the next and one program to the next in utilizing a particular style. In this, I decided to use what I liked from each program and combine them. Genius eh? Well, I never made claims to be smart! The sketch was actually done by hand ( I am not adverse to using the computer but I really wanted the control I can only get by hand.), then scanned in and inked in Illustrator and really working the thick and thins. All the flat colors were done in Illu…

Man From Atlantis!

Here we go again. Yes, it's another trip down memory lane for Jon. Before he was Bobby Ewing and re-appearing in a shower as the worst sub-plot in television history, Patrick Duffy was a water breathing crime fighter for one season of "Man From Atlantis". There was even a Marvel comic adaptation of the series that I recall reading as well. I don't really remember which came first for me. It was really my older brothers comic and he "let me" read it on occasion. The show was very much a formula. Duffy was the last citizen of Atlantis, or so we thought since he also had amnesia, who washed up on shore after a storm. He is found and rescued and when it's discovered he has gills and can swim deeper than a submarine, he is used by the government for covert operations. What's not to love??? The great Victor Buono (King Tut in the old Adam West TV Batman show as well as recurring roles on Wild, Wild West) played Mr. Shubert, a former junk collector turned …


So I finally broke down and let my wife buy me an iPhone. What can I say, I love it! It lets me be a little less tied down to my office in case I get an email for freelance work rather than the phone call. I think the iPhone can handle the call too. I can also carry a portfolio on it and even do some painting while I am bored in the car or wherever. I have seen this app on my friends iPhone and it was one of the first purchases I made when I got mine. I simply played with it trying out the tools and getting myself a "feel" for it for a few weeks and then finally I made a real picture with it. Fruit. Artists always start with fruit for some reason. I just thought that is was a simple enough shape to work with and start off before trying things of a more challenging nature. Hmmmm, maybe that is why artists always start with fruit. You think that they would have explained that better in art school! Someone actually used this app to paint the cover of the New Yorker just recentl…

What's your Vector Captain Action!?

I had heard of Captain Action most of my life yet knew almost nothing about him. I mostly saw ads for the toy in old comic books but knew that they didn't make him anymore by the time I read those issues. I even saw an issue or two of the old DC comic that had some great Gil Kane artwork in it. Several years ago I started to hear this and that regarding the character in that someone was trying to revive him and make new toys and such. Then, just recently, I got one of those mailers from my high-school to keep graduates up to date with goings on and such at the ol' place. I usually just glance at it and skip right to my graduation year to see if anyone I knew has done anything interesting. For some reason I read the whole thing this time. Must have been a night with no baseball on! Anyway, while reading about past graduates, I come across a name and I read that a fellow graduate (a few years older than I, I must add.) now owns the copyright to Captain Action and has been trying…

Ghosts of Photoshop's Past

When I was in art school, they had not yet embraced the coming digital age. Thus, most of my education was focused on traditional media. My class had one half-semester of "digital illustration" where they tried to show us how to use Illustrator. It might have been version 3! Having never seen computers like this before, I was lost. There was no textbook and if I tried to keep notes I would not be able to see the teacher using a plethora of shortcut keys. I did not take to it well. Then, just before graduation, someone showed me the key basics of Photoshop. I was thrilled that I could scan in drawing and compose pages for a portfolio and not spend countless hours and money at Kinko's cutting and pasting and copying! Those were the days!! Then I started dabbling in making a picture right in Photoshop. Of course we had no wacom tablets then and drawing with a mouse was a no-go. I settled with scanning a drawing from my sketchbook and simply coloring it. Digital glazing I ca…

Sampson (or is it Hercules??)

This was just a doodle in my sketch pad that was not even finished. I kinda liked how it looked so I scanned it in and began to play around with it in ArtRage. I cloned his arm to make two and pasted it all together and then just painted it quickly. A posting on the ArtRage forum had the background texture, so I downloaded it and threw it in there. Then I figured that I could just add all the little doodles from the sketchbook to go with it. Kinda makes up for the boring composition. No? Well who cares, it's just a sketch!!

Some doodles

I figured that I have not posted any new art in some time so I thought to rectify that. Kinda. This may not be entirely new but you have not seen them before. I simply went thru my sketchbook and compiled a page of sketches. Some of which you may recognize as early drafts of what when into pieces that have already been posted and some are of ones still yet to come. New stuff is on the way soon. Promise!

The One and Only George Perez

Sorry for the long delay. Being a person of regular routine and being thrust into the world of freelance illustration without warning, it has taken me some time to settle down. Actually, I should clarify that statement to read, "I have not yet found my freelance routine." Well, whatever! So far some work has been coming my way and I have even gotten paid!

Enough about that. I have been meaning to sit down and write this entry to my blog for some time but I have kept shrugging it off. Seems so overwhelming for me. And why not? Who among you out there in cyber land can admit absolute calm and maintain your composure when dealing with one of your heroes?? No, I am not talking about Superman, but one of the few people out there that have had the pleasure to bring him to life on actual comic pages!! When I was a wee lad in New Jersey and pouring over stacks of comic books my brother and I kept in our closet, the first artist that I could ever recognize just by looking at his drawi…