25 July 2003

U.S. Timeline Project

The spots in this posting were all for a 'US Timeline' poster project for one of my long time children's publication clients. This would be a classroom teaching aid, showing various significant events in US History. I was to provide small spot illustrations for many of the highlighted events and important historical figures. I don't remember if it was my idea, or the editors, but I finished these in a wide variety of styles, hoping to give the page a bit of variety and pizazz. Some I did in black and white, others in color, some in 'paints', some in 'watercolors', some in scratchboard, some realistic and others stylized. A fun project, but very time consuming. I had done a similar project the month before for the same client, but as a 'world history' poster. I won't label these, but leave it as a quiz, see how many you can name/recognize:

Hmm. Not sure why, but I think a few spots from the 'world history' project ended up in this file. I'll clean house later when I go through the other collection.

10 July 2003

Playing with Paints

For the third year in a row, I was handed a full page 'automobile' illustration assignment from my long time east coast newspaper client. Cars are not my strong point, but I'll dive right in, if for any other reason, just to get better at my weak areas. Used a vw beetle as my 'car' this time, as this was focusing on 'stylish money saving vehicles'. I used to own a '74 yellow bug, and have had my eye on these new beetles for quite a few years (we eventually got one a couple years later, yellow, just like this one). I chose to finish this piece in a 'painterly style', and it turned out quite nice. The hardest part was getting the 'skid marks' to look right.

Another piece for the same client, was this illustration on 'bug migration'. The story focused in on how bugs get confused by all the new cell phone towers and the lights from airports, and change their migratory patterns. I used a combination of techniques and mediums for this one, plus also cheated a bit, copying and pasting bugs to make a 'swarm (although drawing in many of the wings individually so that it didn't look so much like I copied them). Not too crazy about the dark color I chose for the background, but I didn't want to use black. Perhaps I should have gradiated the background a bit more, maybe darker at the top and lighter at the bottom, and perhaps a beam of light across the thing so that some of the bugs could be sillouetted. Hindsight is a great thing.

I also had a rather strange assignment from the same paper this month where I also dipped into the virtual 'paintbucket'. It was requested that I do a piece for an article about 'spying', where it would look as if a person were peeking around behind the newspaper at the reader. Probably the closest thing to a painted self portrait I've ever done of myself 'on assignment'. Hope it didn't creep out too many Long Islanders to see my face peeking out at them from the daily paper.

The above illustration was for a jesuit publication, this article being about that famous conversation between Jesus and Pontius Pilate about the nature of 'truth'. I wanted to do something a little different than the usual 'scratchboard' that I had been doing for this client, so I tried something a little looser and experimental.

Below is another map for my children's publication client. This one having to do with different types of forests/trees and their locations around the world. The map was pretty straightforward, but the trees along the bottom were quite detailed and time consuming both in rendering and in research.

08 July 2003

Cartooning in July

Another batch of 'bible stories' artwork came due in July of '03. This was an ongoing 3 or 4 year project for a local religious organization's school curriculum. I've chosen a few of the 20 or so illustrations for this batch, as examples of what most of the work looked like.

Other assignments this month that I finished in this same 'quasi-cartoon' style were the spots to the left and below for an east coast newspaper client. The one to the left was about boisterous grandchildren, and the piece below was about 'keeping fit'. It may or may not have been for the same article on retirement, I don't quite remember. As you can see by comparing the styles of these two illustrations and the 'bible stories' above, I am able to tweak the style a bit as far as 'cartooniness' goes, depending on how heavy or light the material is.

Also this month, I had another 'puzzle page' assignment for a children's science magazine. This one was some sort of story problem, set on another planet, featuring a bug eyed alien, and helium filled balloons.

02 July 2003


One of my better 'bull' concepts for my national newspaper client is pictured above. And one of the goofier ones is pictured to the left. Not sure what the slant of each of these stories was, but I'm guessing that the 'bull market' isn't quite in full swing just yet.

For the same client, below, I had my usual weekly 'health care' spot. The topics this month were: 'baby helmets', 'birth control', 'breath strips' and something to do with 'driving around in cars' (I don't remember this one at all).

I had a 'same day' illustration for one of my east coast newspaper clients, a black and white scratchboard editorial piece about the Iraq war.

Another black and white piece this month, was for a christian publication, to accompany a story about a reunion between a son and an estranged father and his new wife.

Below that one, is a color scratchboard piece for an east coast legal newspaper. I don't quite remember the slant of this story, perhaps about immigration rulings?

01 July 2003

Financial spots

These three spots were for AG Edwards in July. Due to the usage agreements with this client, I am only posting these illustrations retroactively, once the 5 year window has passed.