“Today, in our field, there is so much talent and recognition that we are reaching a saturation point. An artist should no longer strive only for breathtaking craftsmanship; he should, instead, try to help us live better, either by dressing the wounds that are constantly being opened by society, or by offering solutions to get us out of the mess we’re in…But it’s going to be difficult and we have a lot of work to do.” - Jean 'Moebius' Giraud

Thursday, August 31, 2006

DRACUL_90 minutes

Hey, at the end of that Queen song One Vision, does Freddy Mercury shout, "...fried chicken"?! If so then that's either brilliant or nuts. I'm not sure which one yet.

Monday, August 28, 2006

WHOLE LOTTA CYCLOPS_90 minutes

It's funny how things have a way of relating to each other.

For example: someone just commented on whether or not I use reference to '...visualize or imagination'. Most of the time I don't use the reference - unless of course it's of the costume or character design variety. And the fact that I *don't* use reference is obvious on two fronts. 1) I can guarantee you that if I were smart enough to use a visual guide for my anatomy, poses, etc. they'd look a hell of a lot better than what ends up on paper, and 2) It's difficult to find an exact image I'd need that'd have the male or female posed the way I see it in my head - it's just plain easier for me to make it up. I mean it's obvious at this point, yeah? You've all seen the women I draw - they're jacked up. Women don't really look like that. So, yeah - no reference.

Except for *this* here Cyclops (hee!). In an earlier post, I put up another kind 'Cyclops' as a joke to a friend and then promising him the actual one he asked for - Super X-men Leader dude. Racking my brain of what to draw (pose, props, etc) I came upon a small figure gifted to me by Lauren and figured it was my salvation. And boy, howdy - was it ever! Here's a picture of the little figure:



Now I've said in the past that drawing the big optic blast shooting outta' his eyes looked retarded as hell - and this toy does nothing but validate that point. I mean, it looks like someone squeezed him and ketchup is coming out of his face! He likes his robot tentacles with ketchup, I guess. Maybe I just say that because I don't know how to draw that blast very well. Whatever.

Also, at this past San Diego show I did a quick doodle of The Greatest Character in the Marvel Universe Ever for Remy 'Eisu' Mokhtar (I hope I spelled that right, man). Check out his LJ entries - a fine illustrator that puts my garbage to shame. Here's the doodle:



So, to review: no reference except when it makes my job easier by not thinking about it. Cyclops with no eye blast is awesome. Eisu rocks the mic right.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

PARADISE CITY_90 minutes

Inspired by a combination of the G&R song and my slight case of auditory dyslexia:
"Take me down to the Paradise City, where the girls are green and the grass is pretty..."
You guys remember that classic where Axl sang about She-Hulk, don't you?! C'mon...it was #1 with a bullet, fer chrissakes!

FENCE_90 minutes

"It's been said that love forces people to change. That to be loved we must become what those who love us want us to be. Dutiful child, best friend, faithful lover, loyal protector - it must be difficult for people to remember that they're supposed to be all of those things. Especially if in their desperation to be loved they're forced to change into someone completely different."

TITANS_90 minutes

Please fogive the costume inaccuracies - I didn't have time to do the research while I was tightening up the pencils so I did the best I could from memory.

Friday, August 25, 2006

PRINCESS & KING_90 minutes

Well, of course I was going to post more images before the week ends. Who are you talking to here?

Anyway, two things:
1) Aquaman is such a pretty boy - outside of the fact that he's 'King of the Seven Seas' and I crack on him for being one of the most useless characters ever created (calm down, you Aquaman freaks...I'm only kidding. I like him enough), he's also a pretty boy. And he knows it. Useless and vein, the Aquaman is. 2) Again with the bad planning. I gave ol' pretty boy a tuning fork but didn't leave enough room to draw the whole thing. I could say that I only had 90 minutes and I was worried more about the composition than the trident, but that's a crutch and almost a lie. I saw the mistake about ten minutes in and I didn't care.


Suck on that, Aquaman.

Oh hey, remember the old 'Superfriends' cartoons? If memory serves me right, 'King of Shrimps and Seahorses' here used to ride a whale in the opening credits before he sends out a telepath(et)ic call to arms to the other fish? Point is, he used to ride that whale like a horse...like a HORSE! Do you know how wide he's got to open his frikkin' legs to be able to mount a humpback like that?! Oh well, I guess he's the 'King of Liar Characters Who Are Useless' too.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

THURSDAY_90 minutes


Okie-dokie...probably not going to be putting up anything new until the beginning of next week (yeah, right!) so I thought I'd just get everything out of the way and post a bunch of stuff now! Yeah!

Sitting around the living room with friends, watching movies, and talking nonsense - it was a good Wednesday night. And when there's no weight of the next morning being a working day? Man, it's even better.

KEDS_90 minutes

This was inspired by a Keds postcard (conveniently stacked with other postcards near the men's restroom, go figure?) and then combined with my rendition of an image amazingly rendered by museum/iced tea/argentinian grill connoisseur & my dinner company. BTW, grand apologies to Ms. Phillips - it's never going look as good as the original.

It's a nice bonus for a guy who draws when restaurants cover their tables with blank butcher paper, yeah? Also, if anyone has any valid information on gynecological preservation properties over, um...let's say...an unpeeled banana, I'd really like to hear your theories. I heard a story the other afternoon that's like hearing someone made an egg stand on its end during the equinox.

Oh, yes - the aforementioned image by the artist herself. Fancy.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

ALL RIGHT, FINALLY...

So I've finally finished off all the little loose ends I came home to after the Wizard World Chicagoshow and last night I decided to put together some of the pictures I took there. This is going to be one long ass post so read, don't read, it's up to you. Here we go:
(1) Here's Dustin Nguyen, my hetero travelling companion laughing his ass off coz they cancelled our flight. Actually, he's giggling coz he's thinking about how much 'blacked-out' (I'll explain in a minute) stuff he's about to make at the show. BTW, during the convention, I would come to learn that Duss is pimpin' like you wouldn't believe (DC exclusive, talented artist, family man...he's my hero) - this is the theme of our trip, I think. (2) We arrive at Chicago O'Hare and he's that much closer to the treasure chest that is the convention he looses his mind and licks my head. Hah! j/k - that's just fancy camera tricks, folks. He's not really makin' contact...I swear.

(3) On the train from O'Hare and I'm happy we're finally on our way... (4) only to realize we missed our stop because old ladies move way too slow and the train doors close way too fast - I ain't happy no mo'. (5) Right side of the tracks waiting for the train going the other way - Dustin's smiling; again, coz he's gonna go to his own personal U.S. Mint that is the show. Jeezus, the guy's grinning ear to ear - makes me ill.

(6) Finally at the hotel - this is two minutes after we get in. I swear, two minutes and we're already wreckin' the place. The room was pretty fancy-shmancy. (7) I'm so glad that we're there and that I can get off my feet I'm practically glowing.
(8) Dustin says, "Screw this sitting around, man - my bank account's not gonna fill itself!" So off we went - from our hotel... (9) to the Rosemont (aka Donald E. Stephens) Convention Center.
(10) "Ah," Dustin says. "Fort Knox." (11) You can almost hear the metal doors on the giant safe as we neared the entrance. (12) That's my homie - off to work. Like watchin' a shark swimming in a herd of seals, looking for his next meal. (13) "What the hell is Ferrigno doing in my mother-*&^%@in' safe?!?" exclaimed 'The Duss'.

(14) A man in his element, doin' FREE sketches...(15) and more FREE sketches...so generous (16) and generous enough to let me use up a spot at his table - otherwise known as 'The ATM Machine' (17) "Hey, The Duss...man, can you draw me a sketch?" a fan asks.
"Hmmm," ponders The Duss. "What's Eric drawing? Poison Ivy, huh? I'll do one and show his ass up. These are my fans, bitch!"


(18) "Who's cool and has two thumbs?" The Duss asks while thumbing to himself. That's an awesome Ivy drawing, dood. (19) Yeah, alright - his is waaay better. I only wish I had such a cool, sweeping signature. Someday...some day...



(20 through 28) Best part of the show, unlike my San Diego experience, is the fact that I had the opportunity to get away from the table and lo0k around. I managed to get these pictures of the kickass toys and statues displayed at the DC Comics booth. My personal favorite is the one of Batgirl - she rocks! So, the evening comes and back to the hotel we go - bringing to focus the point of this whooooole thing....($$$) Ladies and gentlemen, Pimp-a-liscious! Dustin asked me not to show what he was holding up in this photo, so I've respected his wishes and blacked it out. Anyway, the guy had so much of the blacked-out stuff he decided it was time to go to dinner and get his drink on.
(29) My depression hits an all time low that I decided that there's no better time to get into alcohol than the present. Hah! Jokes! I hate the beer! (30) The beautiful Marti and her beautiful, bald, boyfriend Joe Dodd. Joe's another talented artist that Dustin has decided to keep under his thumb. Talent scares talent. (31) Speaking of scary...these two are about an Bloomin' Onion and a couple of beers away from makin' a love connection. Hah! Seriously, though - look at the look on Mark's face. That's a nervous smile, let me tell you. Below camera Dustin's still thumbing at himself and saying, "Cool."


(32) I swear I don't drink - the true sign of a drinking problem is when you're caught on film and you *still* try to deny it. But yeah, I don't drink - Dustin just thought it'd be a funny joke. I swear I don't drink...I promise. I don't drink. Oh yeah: the grainy images? That's from Dustin's camera phone. The man makes blacked-out stuff like a slumlord but doesn't invest a dime on a decent digital camera. Go figure. (33) See? See?!? That's a glass of water in my hand, you bastards! Quit judging me! Me, The Duss, and Reuben Martinez - toy designer extraordinaire. (34) A perfect example that you can be talented as hell and still be a nice guy, Francis Manapul tolerates The Duss and takes an uncomfortable picture with him. Thanks for talkin' it up with us, Francis!Time to go home. (35 and 36) We stop at a restaurant in the airport, grab a bite to eat, before we get on our flight. All kidding aside folks, this was by far, the best show I have been to in a long, long time. And due, in no small part, to Dustin Nguyen - who put up with me during the trip, talked shop with me while we were on the plane and cracked me up with jokes the entire time we were sitting behind the table. Thanks, man. This was a nice, surprising end to a convention season that I thought was pretty crappy considering the SDCC show. (37) Here's the woman I was stalking. Hah! j/k...that's the alcohol talking. My fat fingers pressed the button accidentally - I didn't even know it 'til I got home. (38) "Ladies and gentlemen, thank you very much flying with Oceanic Flight #815 non-stop to Los Angeles..." Uh-oh.
I get home and my baggage is heavier than before I left. I brought home some great SHWAG! (39: clockwise, top l to r) My handmade table name plate, the Chicago Transit train card, my boarding pass (oh, if you can avoid it, never, EVER fly American Airlines...such a pain), and my convention badge. (40: clockwise, top l to r) MaverikAnim - Girls, Sketches, and more : Art of Matt Stewart '06, MaverikAnim - Girls: Matt Stewart 'o5, Adam Hughes - 'Greatest H(T)its', 'Excess Baggage' - Mark Brooks 2006-07 sketchbook,'For A Few Dollar More' - a sketchbook by Philip Moy, and 'Comics and Stories' by Matt Horak.
(41) A man walks up to our table and introduces himself as writer Ian Edginton. He looks through my stuff, lights up, then proceeds to give me a copy of all of his work! I'm familiar with some of the books he gave me based on the artwork, but now I'm actually going to get a chance to read through them. Thanks for the books, Ian! I wish I could've given you more than just the B&B sketchbook. (42: clockwise, l to r) Francis Manapul 2006 Sketchbook, 'Street Sessions' Vol. 1, Francis Manapul 2005 Limited Edition Sketchbook, Takeshi Miyazawa - 'Paper Canvas', Bill Sienkiewicz 2006 Sketchbook, Kalman Andrasofszky - 'The Horhaus Files, Vol. 1'.
(43) Yeah, I bought some bootleg DVDs too - coz what's a comicbook convention without bootlegs? These two are 'Wonderful' and 'Samurai Champloo' - which I don't get what the hell the hype's all about? Because they shake the gaddam camera whenever they fight? Because the stories are slow and character development is minimal? To be fair, I've only gone through about 4 episodes, but geez...why's this thing get so much press?! 'Bebop' was/is so much better.

Okay, I took more pictures and bought more stuff, but this damn entry is long (and uninteresting) enough. Again, I wanna thank my hetero travel mate Dustin for inviting me and thanks to all the talented people I met while I was roaming Artist's Alley - Skottie Young, Greg Titus, Khary Randolph, Ryan Ottley, Mark Brooks, Takeshi, Kalman, Eddy Choi, Ivan Brandon and Andy McDonald, Mark Sable and Paul Azaceta, Keron Grant, Sanford Greene...and anyone else I'm forgetting (apologies) - you guys made that show for me.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

MODIGLIANI_90 minutes

Birds flying high, you know how I feel. Sun in the sky, you know how I feel. Breeze driftin on by, you know how I feel. It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life for me, and Im feeling good.

Fish in the sea you know how I feel. River running free, you know how I feel. Blossom on the tree, you know how I feel. It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life for me, and Im feeling good.

Dragonfly out in the sun, you know what I mean. Butterflies all havin fun, you know what I mean. Sleep in peace when day is done, thats what I mean. And this old world is a new world and a bold world for me.

Stars when you shine, you know how I feel. Scent of the pine, you know how I feel. Freedom is mine and I know how I feel. It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life for me, and Im feeling good.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

LITERAL CYCLOPS_commission




At the WW:C 2006 I ran into fellow pro and after a bit of chit-chat he kindly asks for a commission (which surprises the hell out me), then leaves it to me what character I would draw. I explain that it would be much easier if he would just tell me what he might have in mind. Giving it a moment and an "Uuummm..." he asks, "Well, who's your favorite character?"

"Cyclops, old-school outfit." I replied, but privately I thought, "Uh-oh."

"Cool! Then hook me up with an awesome Cyclops!" he said.

"Okay." I said. Though in my head I thought, "Man...I don't wanna draw Cylcops again."
So if you're reading this, man, I hope you've got a good chin for jokes. I *did* draw a Cyclops, so I didn't take your money and lie to you. Hee! Bah, I'll still draw you a picture of Slim - this one was for just laughs. Haha!

You know what else is funny? 'Though' and 'thought' (even 'through' for that matter) are almost the same word with only one letter off, yet they're pronounced very differently - HAHAHAH!... Hoho...hee....oh, all right - I'll give you your money back.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

CLOWN FISH_shoes





Same deal that Lauren mentioned in her earlier post about the zombie shoes - a buddy asked if I could design and decorate the shoes with whatever came to my mind. Do you know how difficult and awkward it is to work within the workspace of something shaped like a shoe? Damn near impossible, I tell you.

I know the plain, white tongue of the shoe makes it really pop out, but a fine pair of orange shoelaces should complete the desired effect. So yeah...fish.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

SKETCHES_random






So, I had promised to upload more images due to my lack of updates over this past weekend and in truth, I had every intent to do so - even scanned the girl squeezing out of the robot. Then...ZARK!...my monitor farts out. Had to go buy another one, set it up and here it is Wednesday morning. It's when we we've come to depend on things that we expect to work and those things fail that the day to day comes to a screeching halt. Damn undependable things.

Anyhoo - all of these were done as sketches for other people. I'd link all of their information but that's just way, way too much work this early in the morning - forgive me, (future) owners of these images. Thanks for letting me draw for you.

Also, Dustin Nguyen said, "Dood, buy the Copic Sketch markers and they'll make you draw soooooo much better!" Bought 'em. Liar, Dustin.

Monday, August 14, 2006

POWERGIRL_90 minutes

No new posts over the weekend?!? What the hell was I doing with my time? Slackin' off, that's what. Okay, I'll make up for it today. Here's one - Powergirl with her little, tubby friend. More later.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

TEKKEN 5_90 minutes

Yeah, okay...this one went over by twenty minutes or so (so technically it took 110+ minutes to finish) but theres a good reason why - and I'm going to tell you.

I work with a very evil, highly manipulative, soon-to-be Alzhiemers ridden (not to mention, vastly talented) person who annoyingly kept suggesting edits to the picture as I first started it. Some of the suggestions I had to incorporate as they seemed a natural fit (i.e.: Yoshimitsu spinning his blades for that helicopter effect in order to help with the composition), but more often than not they really didn't help at all. Case in point, Anna Williams - the broad sticking her foot towards camera. This was originally supposed to be Xiaoyu until I was reminded how much I hated that character. And instead of just letting me erase the previous character, replace it with the new and leaving at that, I was given mandate to put Xiaoyu dead under a fighting panda bear. I had to get reference for Anna's costume and the panda, repose/compose them and the next thing you know - it's ninety minutes later.

And yes, I could have said 'no' and just continued with my business, but mandates that come with visual reference drawn by the demon-seed was difficult to turn away.

Behold...

Notice the 'X's representing Xiaoyu's untimely state accompanied by the protruding tongue. It's this attention to detail that I didn't have the heart to turn down. Enjoy.

CENTAUR_90 minutes

"Wow...your skin is really, really smooth..."

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

WITH APOLOGIES..._90 minutes

Calvin and Hobbes is my first crush by way of syndicated comic strips. First crushes are hard to get over, yeah? After reading Alan's comment I went back and looked through all of my Calvin & Hobbes collections and realized Bill Waterson still got the goods - and *still* even better than advertised. Everything he draws 'reads' as what they're supposed to be. What a wonderful illustrator. Why did he stop drawing this stuff? I never really found out.

Anyway, it was difficult drawing these two without doing them exactly as Waterson would - but then again, that would be just as blasphemous, right? And I can't draw as well as the man, so why even bother trying. So I'll just draw them the best I can...with sincerest apologies (and utmost respect) to Mr. Waterson.

A kid and an imaginary tiger going on adventures together. Far out.

(Thanks to Alan Cichela for planting the seed of doing this image in my head. Great Serpieri images on your site, man.)

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

WIZARD WORLD: CHICAGO_commissions








What a wonderful show! The trip started out ominous enough with our flight being cancelled, missing our check-in time, trouble at the X-ray screening and totally getting trapped on the train while we were in town, but everything turned out smelling like roses thereafter. I had a blast.

Part of the fun was that people were kind enough to ask me to draw for them. Here are some (not all - I didn't get a chance to take photos of the the other two images I did, so if you happen to be one of the people who I did commissions for please send along a nice scan - I'd certainly appreicate it) of the commisions I did while I was in town. I had no scanner, so I had to take photographs of them as the next, best alternative.

What really made the show an enjoyable experience was the company; hanging out with Dustin, Joe and Marty, and Mark had made the show one of the most memorable ones for me in a long, long time. Thanks for the laughs you crazy kids. I also wanted to thank anyone and everyone I met that worked for the Wizard World staff for accomodating us - you guys are top notch.

I'll get into more details about the amazing folks I met while I was there at a later post. For now here are those commissions. Enjoy.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

GREYSKULL_90 minutes

To the fans of this cartoon, have you ever noticed that when our all-too feminine prince turns into the burly, 'punch-him-til-he-submits' hero, he also gets a tan? I guess that sword's good for figthin' evil and not harmful UV rays.

Also, wasn't the He-Man line of toys just Mattel's way of repackaging their failed attempts at acquiring the Conan the Barbarian liscense? I think I read that somewhere before. I don't know if it's true or not. Hah! Suck on that Robert E. Howard - you gave up what could argueably be *the* most successful line of toys generated by a overly preachy cartoon for nothin'! Hah!...huh? Yeah, sure I know Conan's *still* relevant and He-Man totally isn't - but that's not the point! The point is... well, the point is... yo' momma, that's what.

"Fabulous secret powers were revealed to me, the day I held my sword aloft and said, "By the power of Grayskull! I have the power!"

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

VAMPIRELLA & BATMAN_90 minutes

I have no idea why I did these two together. Because one likes to drink blood and the other... likes to beat up on 'Bloods'?... and 'Crips'? Jeezus. Do Bloods and Crips even exist anymore? I have no idea. All I know is what Ice Cube's character 'Doughboy' told me in the movie Boyz In The Hood:

"Foo'... you don't go to college to be talkin' to no bitches. Your black ass 'posed to be learnin' somethin'. Can't learn shit talkin' to no stupid ass bitch."

And, "This shit goes on and on, you know? Either they don't know; don't show; or care about what's going on in the hood."

Like I said, I seriously have no idea.