Friday, December 14, 2012

Art Attack!

I was recently filmed for Art Attack, a feature on SoulPancake where they "present an artist with a spark and they create a piece of art based on it. Then, we see their process unfold in glorious time lapse!

And apparently someone hates my glasses? Or rather is definitely going to. I dunno.


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Father vs. Son

Here's a personal piece that I began in May and set aside for months now. I finally managed to sit down and finish it this weekend.
If you know me (not even all that well) you can certainly tell that I probably know Star Wars better than I know anything else (see also the numerous drawings I did last year)
Rather than repeat myself and do straight portraits from the films, I wanted to show a different angle of one of my favorite scenes. In this image, it's the "calm before the storm" moment just before Vader springs out to attack Luke in the climax of The Empire Strikes Back.

Detail - Luke
Detail - Vader
Detail - Basic on a wall panel
And be sure to check out PJ McQuade's AWESOME Star Wars holiday cards here! Tis the season to be a nerfherder!


UPDATE: This piece is now available as a print as well as iPhone/iPod cases and stationery cards at my Society6 store,

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Singles vs. Baker Boys

Here's a cover I did for Seattle Weekly for a story by Mike Seely (read here) that argues that Steve Kloves' The Fabulous Baker Boys, starring Jeff Bridges and Michelle Pfeiffer, is the more quintessential Seattle movie than Cameron Crowe's Singles, starring Matt Dillon and Bridget Fonda.
AD Jane Sherman (who is now over at Seattle Met) contacted me with the idea of putting Bridges and Pfeiffer in the iconic pose from the Singles poster, having apparently ousted Dillon and Fonda.
 I sketched out several variations to find the right combination of the two sets of characters.

Thanks again to Jane for such a fun gig!


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Clever Girl

Here's a quick piece I did for fun over Sunday and Monday based on one of my favorite movies, Jurassic Park.
I wanted to make something that would pay homage somewhat to the wonderful simplicity of the iconic original poster as well as make use of one of the film's many incredible images.
I also wanted to challenge myself to use as few colors as possible so that it was clean and simple throughout.


UPDATE: This piece is now available as a print as well as iPhone/iPod cases and stationery cards at my Society6 store,

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

You Are the Pan

Plain and simple, Hook is my favorite movie.
There's a puzzle that I made when I was a kid that's stashed away somewhere in my parents' basement. It was one of those draw-your-own-design puzzle kits. So naturally I drew the big fight from the end between the Lost Boys and Hook's pirates.
I watch it on Blu-Ray at least once a month.
I listen to the John Williams score at least once a week. (In fact, I just got the expanded soundtrack, which has several pieces from the film I've been dying to have)
Hell, I even wore out my copy of it on VHS.

There were a number of moments from the film I've wanted to draw as a poster...

 ...but I ended up choosing what I felt was the most appropriate: when Peter finally finds his happy thought and becomes the Pan once more.



Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Textbook Piracy

Ahoy! Here's a new spot once again for this week's Village Voice Winter Education Supplement, Class Action. The article by Patrick Arden, to be read here, is about how college students nowadays are circumventing the dreadfully depressing practice, which I can safely say that I do not miss in the least, of having to buy costly textbooks for their classes. Instead, they're able to find and download illegal PDF eBooks of the textbooks online for their tablets/devices.
AD Jesus Diaz contacted me with some fun ideas about really playing up the aspect of pirates. While sketching out ideas, I looked at a lot of pirate illustration done by greats like N.C. Wyeth and Howard Pyle to find the sort of "standards" in pirate characters. I also listened to John Williams' score for Hook extensively, but that's not unusual for me.

I wound up with 6 sketches, many of which I would have been happy to take to final. The first sketch was chosen, with the added idea of putting the mast of a ship in the background behind the pirate and student.

Thanks again to Jesus for an extremely fun gig!


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Beasts of the Southern Wild

To point it out right way, yes, it's another personal illustration based on a movie (in case you didn't pick up on the fact that this is a trend, see examples here, here, here, and here) This time, it's the beautiful film Beasts of the Southern Wild, directed by Benh Zeitlin. It's a sincerely unique and powerful film, from the vision of the Bathtub to the impressive performances by Quvenzhané Wallis and Dwight Henry or the wonderful, Malick-like cinematography by Ben Richardson.
I'm still not positive why I had wanted to do this piece. Maybe it was the opportunity to draw a creature as unique as the film's auroch or to try and capture the strength in the wonderful and magnetic Quvenzhané Wallis as Hushpuppy. Either way, I was dying to do it.


Auroch fur texture
Hushpuppy detail
Auroch detail
I was initially planning on holding off on the release of this piece until it's release on Blu-ray and DVD on December 4th, but it turns out that someone from the Beasts Twitter (@BeastsTheMovie as well as @thebathtubber) noticed some small previews I had posted on Dribbble. They asked if they could share the piece on their blog! You can check out their post about my piece here along with a little blurb I wrote about what the piece and film mean to me.
Be sure to check out the film if you haven't yet when it comes out on Blu-ray and DVD on December 4th.

"I see that I am a little piece of a big, big universe, and that makes it right." -Hushpuppy


UPDATE: This piece is now available as a print as well as iPhone/iPod cases and stationery cards at my Society6 store,

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Master

Here's a personal piece I just finished up that's based on the new Paul Thomas Anderson film The Master starring Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Amy Adams.
I've seen the film twice now and I can sincerely say that it's incredible - challenging, distant, and powerful. Between the performances, cinematography, and direction, it's sure to be an awards juggernaut. Please note that I'm definitely biased as I'm a big fan of Paul Thomas Anderson's movies. Here are two watercolors I did back in college based on There Will Be Blood.)

Walking out of the theater the second time, I really wanted to draw this twisted kind of scowl that Phoenix's Freddie Quell seems to wear on his face throughout the movie.
In coming up with an idea for an image, I landed on the idea of a small, bent Freddie in the foreground, looking up at the massive form of Hoffman's Lancaster Dodd behind him. I imagined it as a poster for the film, with Dodd sort of posing and presenting himself for the viewer as the "writer, a doctor, a nuclear physicist, a theoretical philosopher" while Freddie peers up at him, unsure of the man he's fiercely following.

The wonderful Steve Brodner also recently tackled a Master illustration for the Village Voice, which you can see here.


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Medical Mayhem

Here's a new illustration for the Village Voice's Fall 2012 Education Supplement in this past week's issue. The article, which you can read here, is about a deal between the NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) and the offshore medical school St. George's which places students from its scholarship program in positions at NYC hospitals. This deal is angering NYC medical schools, which feel as though they're being passed over for a second-rate school.
AD Jesus Diaz called me with the idea of an all-out, chaotic brawl between the medical students from NYC schools and St. George's. In sketching the idea out, I played around with the number of people involved in the fights, all the way from twelve down to just two.
Sketch 1 ended up being chosen and adjusted into a square composition with thirteen people fighting. Jesus suggested amping up the use of the doctor's tools as weapons and even throwing in some blood (Frank Miller style) to stand out with all of the students' white coats.
I got to penciling and inking right away, with some great reference from photos of gang fights, riots, and boxing matches as well as some truly ridiculous reference photos of myself.

I had an absolute blast figuring out the action happening between each pair of students fighting, from a headlock to a shot to the jaw with a clipboard to a nose-breaking jab to the big haymaker in the front.
Thanks to PJ McQuade for sending me a few copies!
I'm very pleased with how the final turned out and to be included in an issue with great illustrations by Kelsey Dake and Laura Bifano. Thanks again to Jesus for a tremendously fun assignment!


Wednesday, July 18, 2012


I was contacted recently by AD Reseca Peskin to do another cover for the Philadelphia City Paper. The last two covers I did for the City Paper, the People Who Died 2011 and the Urban Farmer's Almanac, were a blast so I jumped at the chance to do another.
QFEST is Philadelphia's annual GLBT film festival with over 100 GLBT films from around the world. For the cover about the festival, Reseca wanted an old fashioned movie theater with a big drag queen in the ticket booth. I worked up a few variations on the idea with my favorite image being the one with the drag queen (named Divine in homage to John Waters) right front and center welcoming the viewer to the festival.
I had a great time researching and finding reference for the theater facade and drawing everything on Divine from the sequins to the wig to the chest hair. And I even ended up giving lettering a shot!
Marquee Lettering
Thanks again Reseca and City Paper for a fun, fabulous gig!


Friday, June 1, 2012

Hiding in Plain Sight

Last week, I was contacted by AD Ryan Olbrysh over at Las Vegas Weekly to do an illustration for an article about fugitives fleeing and being captured in Vegas.
Ryan had a fun idea of Vegas icon Vegas Vic chasing down and apprehending a fugitive. I played around with this idea in the sketches (below) and we agreed on the first sketch - a 70's cop show-esque action shot with Vic, in his neon uniform, hot on the heels of a particularly gangster-looking fugitive.
Thanks again Ryan for a fun assignment!

with the article

Monday, April 2, 2012

Urban Farmer's Almanac

I got a call earlier this month from AD Reseca Peskin of the Philadelphia City Paper, who was a blast to work with on the People Who Died issue, asking me to do the cover of their upcoming Home and Garden issue as well as a logo to be used with corresponding articles.
Reseca and Editorial Designer Matt Egger essentially wanted me to replicate the Old Farmer's Almanac cover with some specific new vignettes.

While it was nice to have an idea in place from the beginning, it still presented a challenge in mimicking a specific look while still allowing me room creatively.
Inking this piece was a lot of fun because of the loads of small, detailed work. I always enjoy the chance to break out the smallest brushes I've got.

As for the logo, they wanted something that reflected the ribbons from the top of the Old Farmer's Almanac. I went with something badge-like, almost like a 4H winner's ribbon with some simple flourishes around the text.
Thanks again to Reseca and Matt for an uber-fun gig.


Sunday, February 26, 2012

Jackie Kochava

 A good friend of mine I've known since I was about 8 or 9 asked me to do some artwork for an album he produced for rapper Jackie Kochava. His album is called Red Eye Renaissance and you can listen to tracks on his website or Facebook page. I very highly recommend it. The songs are catchy, the production is flawless, and Jackie is incredibly talented.
These were just a good chance to fool around in Photoshop and try to recreate some pretty recognizable labels.


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Dog Daze

I recently did a cover of the Dallas Observer with Village Voice Media Design Director Tom Carlson. It was a cover story about the stray dog problem in Dallas and the animal rescuers taking them in. Alhough they have good intentions in getting the dogs off of the streets, these people may actually be hoarding the dogs and potentially still putting them in poor conditions.
Even though I'm definitely a cat person, I had a great time working on this piece