This is a quick layout digital painting that I did for an animation that Colin is working on. A salmon is going to be leaping out of the water. KaSplOOsh! It was refreshing to get back to some landscape painting and it only took a couple hours. I’m getting the hang of digital painting.
Below the layout are some characters sketches that I did for a kids’ book that I’m illustrating. Yay for digital painting!
Happy New Year, friends! I just painted this tonight. It was inspired by the silly old greeting card image below it. It immediately made me think of my pet/mascot Freeze-Dried Fred, a taxidermy dog-face bat who hangs around my house. I love Fred. He has helped with reference and inspiration for many pieces, but I had yet to do a piece with him directly in it. So here he is with some weird version of me as the crazy vampire spirit of 2013 as we soar like demonic dive-bombers into the New Year.
Here’s the last skeleton portrait of the year. A lovely father and sons piece, except this family seems to have dug themselves out of the grave. This one marks a full year of skeleton portraits. Thank you to everyone who has had a twisted enough sense of humor to let me turn you and your loved ones into the dead things all year long. It’s been fun. Next year I was thinking about doing “ghost portraits.” That’s where I draw an invisible portrait of you. Prices start at a million dollars.
For the past couple years, I have chosen themes to explore. 2011 was monsters. 2012 was definitely skeletons. 2013 might be about ghosts since I have teamed up with a writer to make illustrate a children’s book about a ghost dog, but after drawing hundreds of skeletons this year, I miss working with living subjects. I’m undecided. I am enamored with animals right now. The idea of ghost animals is quite appealing, but it’s not like I decided these kinds of themes consciously as if I’m some sort of trend watching boss monkey with a steam-powered decision making bowler hat on. Geez!
Happy Holidays from Rag-N-Bone Studios! Here’s a new painting that I just finished on Tuesday. I call it “Re-Santa-mated”. Santa was in a deadly sleigh crash. The elves had to rebuild him out of the only supplies they had: toys. It’s painted in acrylic and is about 15”x20”. It was inspired by the hodge-podge of Christmas and Halloween decorations occupying my house right now. The best soundtrack to hear in your head while looking at this painting is “Hooray for Santa Claus”, sung by Pia Zadora in Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. It felt so good to get back to traditional painting. I barely had time to paint by hand while in school. It’s always exciting to see how working in one medium for a while influences another when I pick it up again.
Aside from the painting, I have been on break from SCAD for a few weeks now. I don’t go back until January, but in no way am I bored. I have been enjoying getting back to my freelance illustration life over the break. The winter holidays are always a great time for business and I appreciate everyone who’s been keeping me busy now. I’m going up to Za-Pow Gallery in Asheville this weekend to restock my inventory there, so please stop by there if you are in the area. My work is also always available at HomeGrown Decatur in Atlanta, of course, and at Criminal Records’ ICE Pop-Up Shop in Little 5 Points.
Check out these Ouija board ghosts that I made today in Photoshop. This piece took about two to three hours to complete. No big deal. I really like working in this digital method right now. It’s lots of fun and a fast way to make a cool full painting. I just picked up drawing on the Cintiq at SCAD. This one was completed with just a tablet, but I can’t wait to see what I can do with the Cintiq.
Can’t decide which holiday to celebrate? It doesn’t matter because now is a good time to place an order for a custom holiday card by Rag-N-Bone Studios, no matter what you celebrate. No matter whether it’s Decemberween, Christmas or 12/20/12 (the day that Quetzalcoatl rises up and destroys life as we know it), I’ve got you covered. What do you want? A skeleton portrait of you and your BF, like this lovely custom painting seen above? A Satanic Christmas tree? Zombies gathered around a Menorah? Sexy pin-up Santa girls and Grim Reapers? You’ve got it! If you are interested in a custom and uniquely strange holiday card, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
"No Second Thoughts" Acrylic on wood. $250.
Today’s painting is a first in a series of monster pin-ups. Recently, I picked up a collection of Gil Elvgren pin-up girl prints. Elvgren was a wonderful painter and made very flirty and flattering images of women. After getting those prints and attending a panel with Playboy illustrator Doug Sneyd at Dragon*Con, I was inspired to give pin-ups a shot.
I realized that painting pin-ups of pretty ladies would be a challenge for me. Even though I attend figure drawing sessions and have painted nice pictures of pretty ladies for practice before, they rarely appear in my professional work. I usually have more fun painting pictures of grotesque things. Making things beautiful would be a nice change of pace. I also wanted to do a series of movie monster fan paintings for Spooky Empire and Halloween. I have decided to combine the two. I get the best of both worlds.
This painting is a spoof on Elvgren’s “Second Thoughts” painting. I learned a lot by imitating this style. I like Elvgren and I like The Creature from the Black Lagoon. Everyone is happy!
My new design for this year’s Homegrown Decatur Halloween Parade. Please come on out for a terrifyingly good time.