Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Process.

Alright, so someone asked me to post up a sequence of images outlining my process. I can't imagine why, but here you go:

 First I block out the local colors on my drawing (sorry, can't find my line art, it wasn't great. :P) Then I block in basic areas of light and shadow.
 I didn't really like the composition on the original, the princess was just too small
 Still working on composition, I just wasn't getting the feel I wanted out of the image, so I closed the dragon's eyes and changed the ambient light from blue to red. Also, darkening up the shadows and making the form read.
 Moving into the details. Added texture to the dragon and strings to the lute. At this point I was pretty happy with where the dragon was at, but I was still afraid to touch the girl. People are hard.
 Changed my mind about the red. Did not make me happy and didn't bring out the story the way I would have liked. Purple works better. I also changed the composition a little and gave princess Brat some more space. Also, fire.
You may notice that I don't touch the dragon except for a few touch ups after this. I was pretty pleased with him. I've started adding in the rest of the background of the scene (which I should have done from the beginning) and I tried to start on the girl. Ew.
Bookshelf, Fire, and little to no progress on the girl. I also removed the remaining line art and changed the background from a corner to cavern.
Did I load the same image twice?
Turned the girl into a blue troll. Suck.
Sought professional advice. Added some texture and finally got the girl to look human. Yay!

And the final image. Added some last minute details and texture to make awesome. This is the turning point in the story of Princess Brat and the Dragon where the princess first tries to be civil without the threat of being munched. Is a good job.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Once Again Upon a Time

As promised, the original storyteller, Scheherazade. The Arabic, kindly supplied by the BYU Arabic department, reads: Scheherazade, King, and Once Upon a Time. My little foray into acrylics and crazy ink was fun, instructional, and humbling. I may wait a bit before doing anything like that again.

Quiet as the Tomb

So, I guess that I've offended all twelve of my previously loyal blog-stalkers. According to my stalker/self-esteem boosting program, no one has been to the lonely drafty hallways of my blog in the past three weeks. Apparently, no one likes the blog makeover. Rest assured, I plan to change it to something more bearable for you all. Until then, here is a graveyard, dark and lonely as my blog.

UPDATE: So, I found out that when I updated my blog's look, I accidentally erased the magic html words that made my Google analytics account read it. :P

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Everyone's Favorite Slavic Witch!

I make this assumption on the fact that Baba Yaga is the only Slavic witch I've ever heard of. This is a paper cut out project that I am really quite pleased with.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Another Once Upon a Time

First, a disclaimer: These look so much better in real life. I painted both of these as a project for a class and as a foray into the world of traditional media. Both little red and the dragonish thing are 8x10 acrylic on canvas board. They are actually parts one and two of a set of three. For this particular project we were required to create a series of three works. I decided to to a set of three book cover-esque paintings of folk/fairy tales from around the world. Little Red and Bigby are probably familiar to everyone skulking around my blog, but the second one is a little more obscure. It's a Chinese folk tale called the Xiao Sheng and the Dragon's Pearl.
I've just started working on my third piece based on the tale of Scheherazade from 1001 Nights. I'm pretty excited about it. You should be too.

Friday, November 5, 2010


Having artist friends is so cool! This is a work I commissioned from my friend Michelle Weaver. Sir Tiger With Fur Slicked Back is 6"x8" in gouache on Arches paper with a light sprinkling of awesome sauce. Check out Michelle's work and make sure that she doesn't give up painting and become a mafia hit woman because her art didn't sell. I love her animals in suits. I asked for this one after seeing Sir Owl and Lady Owl.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Once upon a time...

Once upon a time there was a kingdom with a princess problem. And when you have a problem like that, it's best to call in a dragon as soon as possible... This is my character design for Sam Nielson's Digital painting class.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

My Work is Completed! Sorta.

This is not finished. These things are never finished. Every time I get to a point where I have to stop I notice about a dozen more things that could use another pass. But I've already printed off the version of this that I plan to turn in for my Design class. So there.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Making Faces

Yay for digital painting! This is for a project for my drawing class. The assignment was to do portraits, or head drawings of ourselves or anyone we could get to sit for us. We were told that we could use whatever media we wanted, so I opted for the computer. What a time saver, and mess saver! Can you imagine the mess I would have had to clean up doing the six drawings I did? Well I can. Based solely on the mess I made doing the other two. Charcoal, while full of lovely possibilities, is filthy. So I took a photo of myself and dug a few out of the old archives and I used them as reference for these value/head studies. Wheeeee! Anybody recognize these gentlemen?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Digital Painting into the Space Age!

     Here's a little bite of what I've been up to for the past couple of weeks. I painted this, but the brilliant line art was created by Sam Nielsen. I LOVE painting on my computer! It's great! I can just sit down and start painting. There's no prep, no messy cleanup, and I can save as many versions of my work as I like. Handy, yes? I painted this guy in Corel Painter, which I highly recommend to anyone looking into painting via the digital medium. Photoshop is great, and has all kinds of great tricks and techniques to make awesome stuff, but Painter is so much easier to use. I've been thinking about creating a real website one of these days, to show that I can pretend to be all professional, but I know more about aliens than I do about web-hosting. Maybe I should ask the aliens for help.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The dorkfish returns!

He's not much for the social scene, but his choir vowels are impeccable. I painted this in Corel Painter in about 2 1/2 hours for a friend who conducts an open enrollment choir here at BYU. He wanted an image to show his students to encourage proper resonance and vowel formation. Hence, buck-toothed, fish-lipped, bunny-eared dorkfish here.
I would also like to make note that I was paid in taco bell for this drawing. Seriously people: will paint for food!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Look! An obvious distraction!

We all know that I'm just throwing these out to keep you entertained while I try to pretend I'm a real artist. The top one is a line scribble for a college class and the colorful one is my winning crayon coloring entry for the BYU Illustrators' Association opening social. I ONLY COLORED IT! The actual art was done by someone cooler than me, but I won first prize out of fourteen or fifteen entries. It was a childrens' book illustrated by Bob Barrett! I love it!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Sandbender on a Rhino

Your argument is invalid. This is just a quick digital painting I did over a sketch I made at the zoo the other day. Wheee!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Children and Animals

I spent about two hours yesterday afternoon in the Monte L. Bean museum here at BYU. The animals there are such great models! They'll hold still forever! It's just a shame that nine out of ten critters are only heads. I would have stayed longer too if there hadn't been some kind of prepubescent summer program squealing through the museum. Don't get me wrong, I love kids and I got to draw something livelier and less taxidermied than old Monte's acquisitions. I even got to lie to children, which is one of my favorite pastimes. (No, the rest of the animals are just on the other side of the wall. If you turn around really fast, you can catch them blinking.) I had to leave because one little boy's mother thought that it would be really funny to give him six shots of espresso and then make someone else watch him all day.
It was fun to watch for a little while, but after he had run up and down the stairs six or seven times shouting about how the animals all had their heads cut off and where were the cheetahs and that one's a boy, know how I can tell? It started to get old. That museum is nowhere near big enough to escape that kind of constant, high pitched enthusiasm. Then the adult leader of this particular group of manic midgets sat them all down and tried to convince Sir Shoutsalot to help answer some zoological questions given them by the museum. I held on for about two minutes as this little boy jittered his way through an elaborate explanation of why prairie dogs are not really dogs (it's because they dig holes and don't bury things, in case you were wondering) and that the "dolphin fish" was definitely a fish. (No need to explain that one, of course, just common sense.) I left just as he was launching into his third round of That Lion Was a Boy, Guess How I Know?
Since then, I applied a quick color job to two of my favorite sketches from yesterday and have also added a blowgun and some tranquilizer darts to my art kit. Just to be safe.

Friday, June 25, 2010

I am not a gibbering fanboy

Well, I'm not. I don't ever gibber. On purpose.
So, this week my copy of The Art of How to Train Your Dragon finally came! Sometimes I just open it and drool at (never on or over) Nico Marlett's drawings. He just manages to pack so much character into a few simple shapes and lines! I covet whatever mystic talisman grants him his powers. Plus I loved the film. If you haven't seen it, DO. Go and see it, I mean.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Sometimes it Just Doesn't Work

These were two images I whipped up with Painter to hopefully go into a children's book by Diana Smith. It didn't happen though. I guess our visions for what this project should be just didn't match up. Oh well. I figured that since the book wasn't going to happen I might as well post these up for the internet populace to see. I mean, I sort of like them.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Abyss BLINKED!

Madness, thy name be Arkham Horror. If you don't know what I'm talking about, get off your chair and come back when Cthulu has alleviated you of a little bit of your sanity. This will make more sense after. It's a board game modeled after the horrifying, brain twisting stories of H. P. Lovecraft. And even though it's only a boardgame, there's something cathartic about running around the sleepy little town of Arkham annihilating eldritch monstrosities and hurling yourself headlong through portals leading to a plethora of nightmarish netherworlds in order to save reality itself from a hideous elder god. You know what I mean?

Friday, May 21, 2010

For Sale?

So...I may just have a job illustrating a childrens' book! Trick is, I've never done anything freelance professionally. I have no idea what to charge! I'm excited to do the job, it seems like a fun challenge, and I don't want to scare the client away with a high price, but I don't want to undercharge for a major undertaking either. What are standard rates for this kind of thing? What kind of price tag do you put on creativity?
Oh! And does anyone have a couch I can crash on...preferably on a non-American continent? Fenris is going to kill me when he gets out of those ribbons.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Amazing how a single, stupid syllable changes a creepy eel into something much less menacing. It's also amazing how freakishly difficult it is to find design work here in Provo! It might have something to do with the sheer number of doofuses (DOO-fu-suz), myself included, who lurk around the college and want to draw pictures for a living. If any of you three people who regularly check up on this thing hear anything, be sure to let me know.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Der Erlkönig

Recently I was listening to some classical music, you know Mozart, Liszt, Gershwin, that sort of thing, and came across Franz Schubert's setting of the Johan Wolfgang von Goethe poem Der Erlkönig. It's a great Baritone art song and I sort of fell in love with the poem. The poem is about a father and son riding home through the woods. The son tells his father that the Erlking (Alder king if you translate it from the German, but could easily be a transliteration from the original Danish legend which would be translated Elf king) is following them and promising him beautiful things if only the child will come away with him. The father dismisses his child's fears as the product of an overactive imagination while the Erlking's promises become more extravagant and his demands more urgent.
This is a draft of the first page I would make for an illustrated book of the story. Or maybe a second page.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Stompy Rage!

I just got word back from the animation department at BYU. I've been rejected yet again! What does it take!? And so, I will do what any frustrated genius would do: release a genetically altered giant koala and point it at either Tokyo or New York. I mean, it only stands to reason.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I didn't say no purple dragons did I?

This is a purple dragon. I could probably have spent a lot more time on him, especially his horns...but I didn't. I'll come back to him eventually, but I needed something to post. And he's pretty cute. This is a lesson in anatomy: This is my nose, he says. This is where the magic happens.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


Yes, I am SO lazy. I haven't really finished anything over the last month. Well, not true, but there's nothing that I can plop down here on my blarg. So, this is a preliminary drawing for the finished painting that I've already posted. I made it for an assignment in Joe Olsen's class for the theme "This is a place of evil" or something like that. It kind of looks like Fenris there is kidnapping Peter Pan, and the perspective made it difficult to paint, so a lot of changes were made, but I like the way that this one has more mood to it. I promise to stop slacking off soon.