30 April 2008
Received my three complimentary copies of 'Young Dick Cheney' in the mail today. Quite pleased with how they turned out, the printing job is fantastic and the entire package is quite attractive. I was a little worried about the 'two color' illustrations, since I had very little experience with color separations since my days back in the printing industry in the 80s, but I must say they turned out quite nice. Will make nice Father's Day, Memorial Day or Fourth of July gifts, and are available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other fine booksellers.
25 April 2008
Most of the work this week has been for the Far Eastern Economic Review. I had a piece on 'consumers as engines of growth' (pictured below) earlier in the week, and then a portrait of Salman Rushdie (pictured above).
Odd coincidences department: The same week, I get an email from the author of a book I illustrated earlier this year with the following 'gossip news blurb' (link here - last item on the page)
While closer to home, approval of sketches has just come my way for a rather large project for the Christian Reformed Church, which should keep me pretty busy for the next month, drawing biblical battle scenes, camels, sheep and bearded guys in robes.
Another Hong Kong piece I did this week was the illustration below, but I jumped the gun a little bit on posting it, and I was requested to take it off the site until May 6th. My mistake in talking a bit too much about the topic in the text, where it showed up on a search engine and caused a bit of a ruckus.
16 April 2008
Home again from Arizona, and a partial week of work to ease my way back into it. (We'll be leaving on Friday morning to drive to Virginia for a friend's daughter's wedding over the weekend). The illustration above and below is a pro bono job for a local disc golf organization to aid in raising funds for a park restoration. It will be probably printed in one color using a hot stamping process, so the artwork below is closer to how the finish will look (I'll be sure to post a picture of the finished 'disc' when it comes back from the printer. This was a fun project. I've been an avid disc golfer for the past three years, and this course is a neglected rustic favorite of mine in the area, and it will be nice to have a small hand in helping improve the facilities. It was also fun doing something 'on my own' with little or no art direction. My inspiration for the lettering was a combination of 'tattoo designs', and trying to get a feel of the 'briars' that make up so much of the underbrush at this course. I also tried to include some of my favorite old trees from this park, taking a sketch pad with me the last time I played it for reference purposes.
Last weekend I had a larger color illustration for the Wall Street Journal (pictured above) about the rash of layoffs taking place down in the financial sector due to the recent economic downturn. This one took a little longer than usual, and I came right down to the wire in regards to the deadline that day. I also had another of my 'health care' spots for the same client earlier this week. This one was about UltraViolet vaccuum cleaners and water purifiers for germ-o-phobic consumers.
I also had another fiction piece for Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine early in the week. This one was set in ancient Babylonia, and took a bit of research into 'cylindar seals' and 'ziggurats'.
I also had another series of black and white spots for the Chronicle of Higher Education earlier this week. They have been running a series of article about the different election issues, and have been keeping me pretty busy over the past few months with these little 'donkey & elephant' characters. This time, the topic was 'the global marketplace' and various issues pertaining to it.
One other piece I'll be finishing up before we leave for Virginia is an assignment from the Far Eastern Economic Review in Hong Kong. This one has been a little longer deadline than most of the projects from this client, and is a little more complex in size and design.
11 April 2008
Over spring break, we took a trip out to Arizona to check up on my Dad and do a little disc golfin'. We brought the wife's laptop and my wacom tablet and I did a few projects in the early mornings and late evenings (my clock never quite got reset from Michigan time, and I was waking regularly with the sun at 6AM). The illustration above was one I did for Barrons this week. Below is an illustration for the Classroom Edition of the Wall Street Journal that I did prelim sketches for before we left last week, then revised in Arizona and completed the finish over the weekend.
The biggest project of the week, was the cover illustration above for the American Bar Association. I was a bit nervous tackling this one while 'away from the office', as this was a 'bigger' image, and the screen size on my wife's laptop is a bit smaller than I'm used to. I was also a bit leery of working in color on an unfamiliar machine, but everything seems to be alright (maybe a little darker in tone than usual).
Also, during the week, I worked a bit on an interesting side project. I'd been asked to design a 'commemorative golf disc' for a local park restoration project. I did the sketch in Arizona, and will probably be working on the finish over the next week or so. Will be exciting to see how this turns out. (will post details later as this develops). In other news; The author of 'Young Dick Cheney' put together a little promo video that he uploaded on YouTube which features many of the illustrations from the book (can be viewed here), and I was informed of a promo link to the game that I illustrated a couple months ago - where you can view pictures of the game board and box mock-up (link here)
A bit of bad news when we returned home last night. We found our little grey cat Ripley had died sometime in the past two days. Ripley was a favorite subject of mine whenever I had to include a 'cat' in the picture over the past ten years. (below she can be seen on a CD cover I illustrated several years ago) - She was a good companion and the last of my son's 'childhood pets' and she will be missed.
02 April 2008
After a couple weeks of relative quiet, April burst forth with a refreshing downpour, and just in time for our spring break trip to Arizona tomorrow evening. It looks like I'll be bringing along the computer and tablet and doing some work while I'm out there as well. Been raining outside the past few days too, but today is bright and sunny, and I'm tempted to head out and play in the sunshine later this afternoon.
The illustration above was a cover for The Deal magazine that dropped in my lap over the weekend. A fun assignment, but much more time consuming than I anticipated. I spent most of the day Monday and late into the evening getting this one done for a Tuesday deadline. I also had a pair of illustrations over the weekend for the Far Eastern Economic Review in Hong Kong. Both pictured below, one of them on 'internet censorship' and another on 'targeting chinese consumers'.
Also, on monday, I had another of my 'health care' spots for the Wall Street Journal, this one on a new mineral supplement that is purported to treat arthritis and depression. I also got a call on Monday for a rush assignment for the Chronicle of Higher Education (usually they call on Thursday or Friday for a Tuesday deadline), so I squeezed that assignment in as well (pictured below). This one was about the decline of 'Lit Studies'.
The piece above was for the Miami Herald, for an article about the 'weak dollar'. I also was quite busy this week finishing up sketches for the large CRC curriculum job, and sketches for the ABA cover, and before I leave tomorrow I have a few other last minute assignments to attend to. When it rains, it pours.