Monday, August 30, 2010

Home, Tweet, Home

That's right, I've decided to embrace the 20th, I mean 21st, century and opened a Twitter account. I'll be keeping everyone up to date on new projects as they come along plus lots of other interesting stuff. That's what you're supposed to do with it, right!?!

Speaking of technology, can anyone tell me why there's still a fax machine in my office?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

136 Shopping Days 'Til Christmas

That means there's only 136 drawing days left until Christmas Morn' too. I haven't done any Holiday packaging yet this year but there's always a few last minute shoppers as well as the editorial market which comes much later in the year. This week I'm working on a Christmas card for the Interior design company Designated Space Incorporated in Burlington, Ont, Canada. I think this is the forth year in a row I've done their card. With any luck this handsome little elf might get to be included in the scene. I get a great deal of joy out of drawing these little middle aged male elves for DSI. I wouldn't say that they're happy or jolly but they work hard and look good while doing it. It seems a short pant is in style for elves this year.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Harvey Pekar Is Missed Already

Harvey Pekar passed away yesterday morning. I can't give you any information on his death, you'll have to go elsewhere to find that. All I can tell you is that he was a genius writer and that you absolutely need to read his work. If you are unfamiliar with Harvey Pekar find a copy of American Spendor today, either in comic book form or a graphic novel. American Splendor also was turned into one of the best ever comic book movies in 2003.

We are all a little worse off without him. Goodbye Mr. Pekar.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Maisonneuve #36

Maisonneuve #36 has hit the newsstands and I'm proud to be a part of it for the 6th issue in a row.

"Things That Make Us Muslim" produced an illustration very different from where I thought it would go but that's the way it goes. I hope everyone likes it.
I'd also like to congratulate Dave Bidini whose stories I illustrated for Maisonneuve last year won a GOLD Award in the 33rd Annual National Magazine Awards. My pal Anna Minzhulina received SILVER for her art direction of Maisonneuve #34. Nice work!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

More For From The Scrap Pile

You'll be able to find a new illustration of mine in the Summer issue of Maisonneuve. I'm not going to tell you anything about it but I will say it's nothing like these sketches. These were very early doodles for the story but we went in an entirely different direction in the end. I still like them, maybe they'll be a painting one day.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Gold Card Carnival

If you're in a casino in British Columbia before June 13th check out my Gold Card Carnival posters. I did two posters featuring a Strongman, Acrobats and a ton of slot machines. The posters have been cut up into smaller ads all over the BC Gold website but you'll have to go to the casinos to see the whole piece. I'll post the art when I can but until then here's the original Strongman sketch. I kind of like this guy!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Maisonneuve #35

The Spring issue of Maisonneuve Magazine is out. Dave Bidini has written a fifth article for them and I'm back to illustrate it. The story is about a soccer tournament where he met a tattooed ex-soldier who wears his life's trials on his body.

This is probably my favorite piece we've done so far. Maybe he's working on another story but I haven't heard yet. The illustrator is always last to know.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Three In A Box Inc.

I'm happy to announce that I'm now represented by the fine folks at Three In A Box Inc. I signed the contract this week but we've been working hard together for the past three weeks on a number of interesting jobs. Hopefully lots more to come.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

General Electric Goes Green

Here's another piece from my archives. You won't remember this one because it was never published. In 2005 BBDO New York and I worked together a number of times. You would likely remember the General Electric Audubon ads we did together. We took old James Audubon bird prints and altered them to include GE's new green products in the birds' environments. I've said it many times, these three ads are a definite high point in my career. I loved that campaign. There was another ad they were working on for the General Electric Green product campaign around the same time. The idea was to use a Phrenology head and have one of the areas filled with green grass. I knew when they asked me to do the painting that they had also asked a photographer to do the same idea because they hadn't decided on which direction they wanted to go. It was a rush job, painted over a weekend. The art was shipped off but before it even made it to New York, they had decided to use a photograph. My artwork was returned un-opened. My work is usually sent electronically now. Maybe if it was back then my art would've been used. Who knows? BBDO came back a month or so later and asked about having me paint a series of ads for Guinness Beer but they changed their minds and went with photography again, this time before we got started.

BBDO's work is as good as it gets and I'm proud to work with them every time.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Goodbye Alex Chilton

Alex Chilton died yesterday, March 17, 2010. You should listen to one of these records today.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Props To Propaganda

I was going through some old files and found the original artwork for a set of advertisements I worked on for Workopolis. In 2005 I was hired by Due North Communications in Toronto to create these WWII propaganda style recruitment ads. It was a very nice idea and Carson Ting, the art director, did a great job putting them together. There was a second one featuring a marine but I'm going to save him for another day.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Encore à la Maison

What was originally intended to be a contribution to four issues has now been extended. The Spring issue of Maisonneuve Magazine is in the works and will feature the teaming up of me, writer Dave Bidini and art directing genius Anna Minzhulina for the fifth time. I think everyone has outdone themselves this round and I'm especially proud of this painting. I wish I could post it now but I won't spoil the surprise. This is just a sliver of an early rough.

Fingers crossed that there's a round six!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Still Fighting The American Revolution

It's been 4 years years now and I'm still working with writer Thomas Fleming and creative director Scott Feaster on illustrating tales of the American Revolution for Boys' Life Magazine. The newest issue concludes a two part story about a young African American slave whose father was killed in the war and now finds himself having to overcome his fears to save General Washington from the sabre of General Tarleton.

Here's a taste of the most resent series and happy 100th birthday to the Boy Scouts Of America.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Valentine's Day Cheesecake

Here's a little Valentine's Day treat that you won't find in print anywhere. I started this promotional piece a year ago but I ran out of time. I managed to finish it up this month, just in time for the big day. So if you're an art director on my mailing list you might find it in your inbox or maybe even your mailbox.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

10 Years and Counting....

Happy New Year To Everyone!

2010 is here and with it comes my 10th Anniversary as a professional illustrator. During my third year at OCAD I started sending out my portfolio and postcards. I would regularly contact magazines in Toronto by phone and email but I also contacted many potential clients through the school's job listing board. The first job I remember was for The Love Connection's host Chuck Woolery in 2000. An agency was creating a dating website named after Chuck's phrase "2 and 2". The idea was that online daters could send each other postcards online. I illustrated 3 of the 9 postcards but I don't believe the website ever went live. They did tell me that Chuck was very pleased with the pieces I submitted and that he had more ideas for me. Call me any time Mr. Woolery!

I'm sure there were little paid projects prior to this but if I had to name a first assignment this would be it.