Monday, April 18, 2011


The last couple of weeks have been weeks filled with waking. Apparently, I have lost the ability to sleep when I am up against an illustration. I was hired for four commission pieces, plus I had class work. Two of the commissions were familial discounts: I received love and respect. The other two actually paid some bills. I’m not sure how other artisans are, but I dream about the pieces I am actively working on. Sometimes I dream that I manage a beautiful masterpiece only to wake up to find abject disappointment. Sometimes I dream that the pieces are miserable failures only to wake up to find, at least, mediocre meanderings. Sometimes, I just dream and wake up with an assortment of crackers pressed up against my face from whenever it was I fell asleep. Either way, I am awake at my witching hour, 3 am. The illustration goddess pours me a cup (or two, or three) of coffee because THERE WILL BE NO SLEEPING.

as seen on:


Logo design for CBI: COLLINS BASEBALL INSTRUCTION. This is for an independent artisan who mentors people on batting and fielding, located in Tyler, Texas. The idea was to capture a vintage major league look. The entire design came from the client, I simply put it together for him. Life can be so easy when the client knows what they want. Everything is bigger in Texas, including Collins’ balls. Personally, I think that tag line would work. Of course, no one would take their little leaguers within 8 feet of the premises.

“She loves bunnies…. a LOT.” That is all he had to say. The original is now in the hands of “She.” I can't, for the life of me, resist his big brown cow-eyes. He reported that "She" squealed upon receiving her gift. "She" better be good to Honorable Number One Son.

Prints and custom items available at:

I received a request for some recycled Blues goods. I am ecstatic that they love the look. Happy BDay, Mud! From your forever Puss-Puddy!

Everyone knows a Helga in some way shape or form. This character was once described as having a whip in one hand and a Bible in the other. She is the ever-vigilant vigilante of Gawd.

Helga Helios knows the devil is in you…                     Judgement
Ink and Pshop                                                      Uppity Evangelicals are the best at it.

This commissioned piece you have all been waiting to see… was a bear, of sorts. I do not know much about motorcycles, let alone vintage racers on wooden tracks. I love the research that goes along with all of my jobs, but I was often in a quandary as to what exact bike part I was rendering. Here is the final show:

Graphite Pencil

My latest assignment was to render a wild animal in illustrator. I thought it would be swell to render one of my favorite specimens, a Jack Rabbit. The Jack Rabbit was actually called the “Jackass Rabbit” because their ears are reminiscent of an ass (as in mule… sheesh). Mark Twain was the first to coin the phrase “Jack Rabbit.” This rabbit isn’t a rabbit at all, but is a HARE.

My instructions were to create a rendering as realistic as possible with some stylization – from a photograph. I figured ILLUSTRATION + RABBIT (I know – it’s a HARE) = PIECE OF CAKE.
I refer to this project as: THE JACK RABBIT EXPERIENCE. I will never be the same.

To make the fur, I rendered “Blades” of hair and grouped them. Some of the blades were different in color and/or tone. I copied and created a PATTERN BRUSH to fill the stroke. I also chose COLOR AND TINTS so that I could change the look on a whim. After figuring out the best lengths, thicknesses, etc, I used the action palate to record switching the stroke to 30% opacity and MULTIPLY transparency. I thought I was going to shoot myself… but this actually worked out. Everything else was hit and miss with cross hatch filters, Gaussian blurs and swear words.
black-tailed jackrabbit (Lepus californicus)
Photo Credit: Dreamstime Photo Imaging
(photo image – my rendering)

And remember kids, Easter isn’t about Jesus, it IS about the bunny! It’s even Biblical!

Brought to you from the pages of my sketchbook -
The Most Dangerous Place on Earth.


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