Thursday, March 31, 2011

More work in progress..

Here is an update of my work in progress, as promised. In case you missed the earlier post, this is an illustration of the street I grew up on with countless motorcycles parked along each side. Actually though, there are 76. There's no way I could not count after drawing those itty bitty bikes all afternoon.

So far I've scanned it but haven't cleaned it up at all yet. Also I've yet to decide if it needs any more color, whether it be paint or digital. At this point, you'll just have to wait until the book comes out to see what I ultimately decide!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Penguin Group

This coming Thursday my whole MFAI class is taking a trip to Penguin Books to meet with Paul Buckley. Instead of having portfolio reviews we were told to bring an extra special leave-behind. On Sunday I got to work on a one-of-a-kind hand-bound portfolio book to leave with him that features seventeen of my personal favorite (and strongest) illustrations. I haven't posted it until now because I was so frustrated at certain points during the making that I didn't even want to look at it for a couple days. Shrug, it's natural - happens every time I bind a book.

I started off by sketching out a penguin skeleton (too obvious? oh well!) which I enjoyed very very much. It's been about a year since I've done one of these and it felt great to revisit the idea. Although the most important factor was once the screenprinting, ink and digital color will just have to do for now.

Here's an image of the printed and bound book...

I feel like it's got the perfect amount of handmade-ness and hopefully will go over well. Wish me (and all of us) luck!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Plane to Nassau

I'm very excited to post what I've got for you today! This is a drawing that I've completed for the third time.. and the last time. I originally painted this piece with gouache a few days before my flight to the Bahamas in spring 2009. This past December, I thought it would look great if it were super cleanly made in Illustrator - too bad I didn't have the time or patience to complete it up to par. Now, this most recent version (that I started on Thursday and finished yesterday) was drawn with ink and colored in Photoshop. I am officially satisfied and moving on with my life now.

(These are the last two versions. You can see they're painfully similar, but definitely not as perfect for various reasons)

And just in case you're interested and feel like supporting your favorite starving illustrator, this print will be available on my etsy shop tomorrow night! Don't forget to take a look!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Makin' my way around the block

Hello, hello! It's been a tedious week over here in the studio as I've been preparing my next spread for my Growing up Biker Style book. The idea is to lay out my neighborhood and draw in countless parked motorcycles all up and down Mair Ave. This is a true story, my friends, and the only thing to be said is "word got out."

Since this is such a meticulous piece that would normally drive me completely bonkers, I'm seriously taking my time on it, only working on it in the studio (and working on looser drawings at home) and switching back and forth leisurely from looking up reference, measuring, drawing, painting, second coating, etc.

Here is my work in progress, about four hours in or so...

And don't worry - as soon as it's done you'll be the first to know.

Lastly, before I go, I want to throw in this photo I've been using for reference just for fun.. it really makes me want to go on a motorcycle trip to Laconia! Like father like daughter..

Monday, March 21, 2011

Thank Yous

Yesterday was a lazy Sunday for the most part but I did manage to finish making a bunch of thank you surprises just in case anyone ever buys anything off of my etsy shop. I was really excited about making these for awhile now and am happy to see a cute little bunch of them completed. Here's a little sneak preview...

You'll just have to buy something to find out exactly what they are!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Napping with the aforementioned Harley blankie

My latest piece for my Growing up Biker Style book is almost complete. It's drawn from a photo taken in Wildwood in 1992 of nap time with a Harley Davidson towel; precious. I still need to clean up the pencil marks a bit but this is the basic design that I had in mind when I first put it into photoshop. Also I can't decide if I'm totally sold on having text on top of the image, but since this is a photo album-style book I thought it would work as long as it looked like actual handwriting and not type. (My grandmother is the queen of writing on photographs in ink)

I'm still practicing my script daily and hope to have it a little more perfected by the time I have this book laid out in its final stages before binding. I really haven't written in script in years so this is more difficult than it sounds!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Brand New Business Cards

Recently I've been in the process of designing some brand spankin' new business cards and this is what I've got.. (keep in mind that these are just my little mock ups that I made by hand with epson premium presentation matte paper, nothing special, just to get an idea)

I ended up combining the two pieces that make up the diptych that was on the front page of (I also recently changed that to a slideshow.. check it out!) so everything would match seamlessly. Also I used a subtle pattern on the back side, the same one used on the backs of the post cards I recently designed.

I'm planning on getting these printed on overnight prints because they have an option for a spot UV coating. I'm pretty sold on making the car and bird themselves extra glossy.. Sounds like a good time to me!

Monday, March 14, 2011

I'm officially on Etsy!

This past week I spent a little time each day making my etsy shop a pretty place to visit. Now that I drew up a banner and added more than a few items to my shop, I finally feel that I'm all nice and ready to advertise! For now I'm selling prints of my recent work but I plan to make lots of crafty/handmade items to sell over the summer. Keep a look out!

So now, here it is...
Go! Click now! Seriously!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

This is for Matt and all of his A+ spelling skills

Since I'm currently on break and being on a break is about doing what you want to do, not what you have to do, I took a break yesterday from trying to get ahead on classwork and made a little something for Matt instead. I've been meaning to do it for literally over two years, but didn't have a good surface for it/never had the time/when I did have the time was just being plain lazy. Well here it finally is, a little hand lettered painting, inspired by a sign we had seen when we first started dating but refused to pay a ridiculous price for..

We actually found this piece of wood (which is probably a cutting board) when garbage picking in a rich neighborhood (thanks for the inspiration Uncle Chuck!) and as soon as I saw it I knew it'd be perfect for this sign. It's a pretty good size too, about twenty inches tall, making this the largest thing I've made willingly in a long time.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

An old self portrait that still applies

This past Sunday I was looking for some older prints and randomly came across this painting...

It's a self portrait in acrylic on plywood that I never quite got around to finishing. Judging from the bangs, I'm guessing I made it about two years ago.. and I'm sure it happened in Baltimore. I think I abandoned it because I couldn't decide what to paint on the left side, if I remember correctly. It may sound strange but I feel like it's more complete than I originally thought.. I actually like it a lot and it feels consistent with the painting I've been doing since I started the MFA program.

Now the question remains.. what to do with it?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I'm Still Here!

Can you believe it's been an entire week since I last updated? It doesn't sound like long, but it feels like much longer to me.. and although you may think I was doing something relaxing like spending a week on the beach on an island somewhere exotic, or maybe snuggled away watching movies for the last few cold days of winter, I've actually been quite busy and productive! And now, in the last few minutes before I catch my train back to Jersey and it is officially spring break, there is something that I need to tell you.

I'm very excited to say that I've been putting together an etsy shop! It's not quite ready to be advertised yet, so I'm going to hold off on giving out the shop name for now, but I promise it will be posted within the next week. I plan on using this short little break to really get it all together and advertise the heck out of it. So seriously, keep your eyes open!

And also, I feel guilty about leaving without posting at least one image, so here is a little teaser of a spot illustration from the book I'm currently working on this semester. It's about growing up in a family made up of bikers and this is an image of my favorite beach towel from when I was a kid. There is much much more to come. Enjoy!