Sunday, December 29, 2013

Here's wishing everyone a safe and happy New Year! To celebrate ringing in 2014 in a few days I'm debuting two new prints at my store! Since my Greek Gods series is so popular I'm adding two more to the fold, Hera and Hermes.

Both these new prints are based, like the others from this series, on a group of children's magazine illustrations I created. And don't forget the new low prices for ALL my prints - just $16 USD for the 8.5" x 11"s and $28 for the oversized prints (13" x 16" to 13" x 19"), plus shipping! High quality, heavy-weight textured papers and acid-free, archival inks.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Just in time for the holidays... great news from my online store... a brand new customizable print (in two sizes), credit cards and gift cards now accepted, and best of all: new lower prices on all prints! Check out my store for all the super details!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Hey Joey!

Good news everyone! The new Joey Green book, illustrated by lil' ol me, is on the shelves of your favorite bookstore / online bookseller as we speak!

As a sneak peek here are a few of the 40+ illustrations that grace the pages of this groovy tome. Pick it up, why don't cha?!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Diggin' Through the Vaults: Deleted Scenes

Sometimes when working on one of those illustratory-jobby-things I do to make a living I'll scribble up  some pencil sketches, or roughs, that don't end up being finished and make it to print. It might be that I've given the client more than one choice of roughs to choose from (I'm guilty of giving them TOO MUCH choice sometimes), or I've gone in a direction too far away from what the client had in mind.  Occasionally I'm not satisfied with a piece and want to do it over again. Whatever the reason I end up with a collection of unused sketches that I hang onto in an "Unused Illos" file. 

Sometimes I'm lucky enough to have another job that I can adapt the existing image for. More often than not they just sit in that file mocking me about all the time I spent creating them that I probably didn't get paid for... But my pain is YOUR gain - 'cause here's a Glen-A-Riffic Gallery of a few of those discarded doodles for your perusal!

Above is from a Know magazine puzzle page rough from a few years back. The magazine's editor suggested changing the stereotypical tottering old MALE scientist to a tottering old FEMALE scientist. It was the right choice, but here to make one last curtain call is the original version.

A number of years ago I worked on character designs and layouts for an online social media game (along the likes of Cityville) for a major fast food company. These are just one batch of the many variations the characters went through while I was working on the project. I used a couple of these characters as inspiration for two original art cards over at my online store.

Here's a playing card-inspired illustration for a client that ended up going in a very direction. 

The new Joey Green book comes out in a month (plug, plug, plug) that I just happened to illustrate. Here's a rough that wasn't working to convey the intent of the accompanying text - which sort of defeats the whole reason for an illustration! The second try nailed it.

Postcard mailout rough for a client I really liked. I felt I could better though. I was much happier with second, more broad and humorous version.

Here's an oldie from before the turn of the millennium (you can tell by the four, not five, fingers. What was I thinking!) - I tried three versions of this spot illustration trying to conveying clear vision and confidence. The next try was a 1700s explorer. Third attempt was the ticket with a self-assured airline pilot at the helm of a passenger jet.

Hope you enjoyed looking at my trash! 

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Long Time Ago...

The brand new Dark Horse comics reprint compilation "Star Wars Omnibus: Wild Space" hit the book and comic store shelves yesterday. Why am I mentioning this?.... well back in the late 1990s I just happened to collaborate with comic book legend (and pal) Ken Steacy on a couple stories that were originally serialized in Star Wars Kids, a Scholastic, and then newsstand, magazine. Ken did the rough layouts, and I did the finished pencils, the rough lettering and half of the inks (Ken inked the humans, I inked the ships, droids and hardware).

Those very same stories are featured, along with tons of other hard-to-find Star Wars comics going back to 1978, in this great volume. Check it out!

And here's one of our original pages of art from the series before the colors were added for good measure...

One day in the future I'll write about the other 64 page Star Wars mini-comic, and the eleven Star Wars kids books I collaborated or assisted Ken with during the same time!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Saturday Sweets

A bear on a motor scooter stealing a giant pot of honey. That is all.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

I was saddened this week to hear that Zachi Telesha, the 12 year old boy who was the driving force behind the "Hero Up!" superhero book / comic I illustrated last year had passed away on Monday. Zachi's strength while battling cancer for five years was an inspiration for many including the folks at Rodale publishing who helped the book happen and asked me to join the project. 

I never got to meet Zachi but I know his vision and positive outlook will live on in those he touched, and in the Hero Up! book which is can now be purchased to raise funds through the Angel34 organization, which raises money to support those with childhood cancer.

The Lehigh Valley Express-Times (Pennsylvania) has a remembrance of Zachi and his story and has posted a couple videos Zachi filmed recently to tell his own story...

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

See you at the show!

Less than a week until the always excellent Ultimate Hobby and Toy Fair. For those who haven't been it's much more than the name let's on - more of a mix of comic convention, collectable fair, costume contest, book sale, hobby and craft fair, and lot's more all mixed in. I'll be in the Artist Alley section showing and signing my original art and prints (with an emphases on my recent comic book and strip style work) and demonstrating how I make those goofy pictures. See you there!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

4C For Me... (and Thee!)

A quick reminder in case you missed it... I'll be a guest at this Sunday's Camosun College Comics Conference showing my work along with a plethora of other talented Victoria and Vancouver area illustrators and comic artists. It's free to the public and a swell time for those into graphic novels, comic books and other graphic forms of storytelling.

Click on the fab photo below for a recent news piece on the conference and the program featuring my pal, and program creator, Ken Steacy...

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Bob Clarke: 1926-2013

 Bob Clarke, longtime and prolific Mad Magazine artist has passed away at the age of 87. I don't usually get too serious on this blog but Bob's work was a big influence on my both my work and my childhood. I grew up reading Mads every month (my grandmother had a subscription - yay for rockin' cool Gramma! - and passed her copy along to me to keep), and Bob was a staple of the 1970s and early 80s issues I loved as he had been from soon after Mad's switch to magazine format in the 1950s until the 1990s.

 I didn't miss his early work though, as I devoured the mad reprint paperbacks from the same period. Whether it was ad parodies (Bob had been a successful Madison Ave commercial illustrator), his "Believe It or Nuts*!" take on Ripley's "Believe It or Not!" (Bob was the first "ghost" artist on the original Believe It or Not strip after Robert Ripley gave up drawing the strip to devote his time to gathering the stories), his dead-on imitation of comic and cartoon characters, or his own lovely, linear, often clean style, Bob was always a very visual presence in Mad.

(* My own illustrated wedding proposal to my wife-to-be was as much a take on Bob's version as the original.)

I thought I was growing up, and out of silly kid's stuff like Mad (and honestly, the quality of the mag was starting to slip into the 80s) so I lost touch of Mr Clarke's work for a few years until the early 1990s when I rediscovered him again. Soon after that a chance acquisition of 150 issues of Mads from the first magazine issue, #24, to the late 1970s issues cemented my love of his work.

His influence on my own illustration style soon was clear. I don't get to drop names very often, so forgive the indulgence, but Bruce Timm once said to me that with all the legendary artists at Mad to be influenced by (Jack Davis, Wally Wood, Don Martin, Mort Drucker, ad infinitum), I was the only one he had heard of influenced by Bob Clarke. He was puzzled. I was not. Bob had an amazing way to clearly illustrate whatever was needed with a brilliant sense of design and a load of cartoony fun. It's always struck a chord with me. His late 1950s to mid 60s work is simply my favourite magazine work of any artist... period.

I was lucky enough in the late 1990s to purchase (although had I not been broke at the time I would have bought more) a piece from an early Mad (#39, May 1958) that hangs in a place of honour above my drawing table. It inspires me to this day and is pictured below. The published magazine spread is shown below that.

I never had the opportunity to talk to Mr Clarke - although I did write him a letter in the 90s to let him know how much I appreciated his body of work and how it influenced my own, I never heard back that he had received the message. I hope he did.

So I thought it might be fitting to celebrate the legacy of Bob Clarke by sharing a few 1950s to 1970s images of his work, gathered from my own vintage Mad Magazine copies, my original Bob Clarke art, and some other original art scans from Heritage Auctions (much appreciated, folks!)

Bob Clarke, 1926-2013... thank you.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

1st Annual Camosun College Comics Conference - April 7th

 I'll be a guest at the 1st annual Camosun College Comics Conference here in Victoria held in conjunction with the Comics and Graphic Novels course run by Canadian comics legend Ken Steacy. Some of the other guests and speakers will include Paul Chadwick (Concrete), Sam Logan (of Sam & Fuzzy fame), Gareth Gaudin (Perogy Cat, and Legends Comics) and many more. The event is free and open to the public, so read the press release below for more info, and I hope to see you there!

"CAMOSUN COLLEGE COMICS CONFERENCE is a celebration of the artistic and literary impact of comics and graphic novels created locally, nationally, and internationally. The event is open to the public, free of charge, to view the students' works, hear and see the process of visual storytelling, and discuss the medium with the creators, teachers, publishers, and other fans. It will take place on Sunday, April 7th from 11am until 6pm, on the third floor of the historic Young Building, located on Camosun's Lansdowne campus."

"Our sixteen students will be in attendance in an “artists alley” display of their publications and original artwork. There will also be displays by established local creators Gareth Gaudin, Janine Johnston, Nelson Dewey, Ash Vickers, Glen Mullaly, Simon Roy, and Glen & Kay Lovett, as well as presentations by guest speakers Paul Chadwick (Concrete), Anne Marie Fleming (The Magical Life of Long Tak Sam), Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas (Haida Manga), and Sam Logan (Sam & Fuzzy) - below are links to their work, which I hope you will explore:

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Coming Soon to a Galaxy Near You...

Great news from the way-back machine department... I recently found out that a Dark Horse Comics collection of rare Star Wars comics is coming out in late May that features reprints of the Star Wars Kids magazine serialized comics that I co-illustrated with Ken Steacy way back in the late 1990s (we both did pencils, inks and lettering). So cool to see it in the same volume as the late 1970s Pizzazz Star Wars comics I had as a kid!
I'll have more info on this as the release date nears. In the meantime click on the cover above for more info!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Howdy Strangers!

Time sure flies when you're busy as a beaver, so I'm surprised to see it's been a couple months since I've checked in hereabouts. Books, children's readers / e-readers, advertising work (print and online), a greeting card, multiple coloring and activity pages, a few book covers, and a couple of plain old magazine illustrations are the types of jobs I've been busy with since late November. Since most of them are not available to the public yet (there's always a lag of a few weeks to 6 months or more before they are released /published / made available), here's a look at a few that I can show you.

Some are just cropped details from larger images, others are from larger sets of illustrations.

  Hopefully it won't be too long before I can post the full info on all of them.

In the meantime, the pre-order listing for the next Joey Green book (profusely illustrated by your's truly!) is up now - click the pic to go to the listing. Catch you on the flippity flop!