November 30, 2011


I'm having a hell of time keeping up with Mr.Markin, but I'll be damned if it isn't a ton of fun to try. Today I present the Turul:

A mythological bird of great symbolic importance to the Hungarian people.  it is said to represent the power and will of God and was recognized as an ancestor of Atilla the Hun.  Representations of the Turul can be found in many different places, often represented as carrying a flaming sword.  One legend tells the story of the wife of the hero Ugyek, a descendent of Atilla, who had a dream in which Turul appeared.  In this dream, a crystal-clear stream sprang from within her, and as it flowed westward it became a mighty river.  This dream was said to represent a symbolic impregnation of the woman by the Turul, and to indicate that she would give birth to a line of great kings.

I tested out a different way of working with the Turul, and I'm uncertain as to how much I like it. Working in black and white keeps things nice and simple, but I'm still not comfortable with the color layer... Gonna be a little while till I get the kinks in the process worked out. Speaking of, Dan already has the next creature posted (jerk!) so I guess I've got a great opportunity to dive right back in. 

November 24, 2011


Should have had this up and posted weeks ago, but I've been spreading myself out across a lot of little things. Some practice stuff, that I'm debating showing at all, and then a bunch of fun bits and bobs that I'll get up here soon.

Anyways, the Gytrash is another of the "weekly" creature designs committed by Dan, Sho and myself. Here's the blurb we worked from:

A kind of sinister fairy from the folklore of northern britain. At night, it can take the form of a large horse, donkey or sometimes a shaggy black dog with webbed feet. It has huge saucer-shaped eyes and walks with a splashing sound. It is generally described as lurking silently by the side of the road waiting for unwary travellers; however, some stories speak of it in a more positive light as helping to lead lost travellers to safety. There is a memorable description of the Gytrash in Charlotte Bronte's novel Jane Eyre. (see also Padfoot) 


November 10, 2011


Finally getting back into the swing of things now that the wedding and honeymoon are over. Theoretically that means a weekly batch of figure drawing (as well as weekly creature sketches, and maybe something more...)

The drawings from last night turned out... ok. I don't know if I'm just rusty, or what was going on, but I'd swear half the poses didn't last their full time. I'd get about two thirds of the way through what I had planned, and it'd be time for the next pose. Very frustrating. Ah well, guess I need to make with the being faster...

November 9, 2011

The Ky-Lin

Here's the description we were working from this week:

A variant of the Unicorn from the mythology and traditions of China. The Ky-Lin has the head of a dragon, with a single horn, the mane of a lion, the body of a stag, and the tail of an ox. This is taken to indicate that the Ky-Lin represents the five elements and the five virtues. It is also said to embody the yin-yang balance between masculine and feminine: "Ky" meing male and "Lin" female. Its single horn stands for the unity of the world under one great ruler and the Ky-Lin, which normally lives in Paradise, only visits the world at the birth of wise philosophers or during the reign of especially virtuous monarchs. Like its Western cousin, the Ky-Lin is always represented as extremely gentle and it never uses its horn to defend itself. In Chinese art, it appears in the company of sages and immortals, and anyone shown mounted on a Ky-Lin must be a person of great fame or virtue. The term 'To ride a Ky-Lin' indicates a person of outstanding luck and ability. It personifies all that is good, pure and peaceful in the world.

I was a little thrown by the "5 elements" so I did some digging to find out what they were. Turns out that in Chinese mythology, the elements are Earth, Metal, Wood, Water, and Fire. I thought it would be worthwhile to incorporate those aspects along with the various animal traits, using it all as an excuse to challenge myself with some textural inking.

Take a look here to see another version of the Ky-lin (as well as all the other mythological creatures from our weekly sketch challenge, not to mention a heap of other great work). 

November 1, 2011


Finally getting around to catching up to Dan. We (Dan, Sho and I) decided just before I left for the honeymoon that we'd start back into the weekly sketches. We flipped through a mythological creature dictionary that I have, and pulled out 3 candidates to design. Dan has promptly posted each week, making me look like a total slacker, so now it's time to try to jam out some neat designs and get things back in order.

First up is the Pouaki, the entry for which reads:

In Maori legend, Pouaki is a monstrous bird that hunts for people and livestock. Its predations were ended by the cunning plan of the hero Hau-o-Tawera who caused his people to fashion a great net in which to trap the bird. Waiting in hiding, they baited the trap and entangled Pouaki in the net while stabbing it to death. A similarly named bird, Poukai, who may be the same being, is similarly trapped by a pair of hunters led by Pungarehu who travels into the Otherworld after many people have been taken away by it. They chop off the bird's wings and find the remains of their fellow villagers, but on their return they find that all their relatives have died or become much older, since their time in the Otherworld was longer than they had imagined.

What interested me most about the entry was the section regarding the "Otherworld", and its temporal relationship to the normal world. As I was sketching out ideas, trying to come up with something, it dawned on me that the Pouaki could theoretically be incredibly old, given the way time passes in the Otherworld. With that in mind, I started on something that looked like an evolutionary step between dinosaurs and birds, and then gave it a bit of a magical look on its outer edges to suggest its capability to move between worlds. 

October 10, 2011

Black Cat

Went back into this illustration after being asked for a print by my wife. I opened it up to do some quick re-sizing, and a week later I've got a very different looking piece. I'm not certain that I'm done with it yet, but I thought I'd share the results of my incessant tweaking now, before I take off (honeymoon ='s no posts for 3 weeks!).

Let me know what you think of the changes! 


I know it's been a long time between posts, but life has been pretty hectic these last few months, and unfortunately blogging fell by the wayside. Actually, for the most part, drawing fell by the wayside. Things are evening out now though, I'm married now, and it looks as though I'll be wrapping up my legal issues soon. That said, I'm also about to embark on my honeymoon, and as much as I'd like to insist that I'll find a way to update this site while I'm gone, I don't think it's going to happen. Quite frankly, I'm going to be pretty busy :)

However, I do have a few new images for you fine folks to take a gander at. And if this trip is anything like my last, I'll return with a sketchbook full of fun scribbles and sketches that I'll happily share. After that I'll be returning to the routine, trying to get back into the sequential game, busting out illustrations here and there, and soon after it'll be time to get a comic rolling.

For now though, you'll have to make do with some figure drawings:

August 11, 2011

Request #2 - The Green Scar

This one's for Homie Bear. The Hulk is awesome, and gladiator Hulk is even better. 'Nuff said.

August 8, 2011

Request #1

Kinda busy with wedding stuff at the moment, so I'm a little behind, but I should be able to catch up pretty quickly here.

First up is a landscape for Neil. I'm limiting myself to ~an hour for these sketches, so I wasn't able to do a whole lot with this piece, but considering I do so few environments (not to mention digital paintings) I think this turned out pretty well. Unfortunately there's no physical drawing of this, so I won't be able to send anything to Neil. I'll have to keep that in mind next time I plan one of these out...

Had a lot of fun with this, thanks a ton for the suggestion Neil, hope there's many more where this came from!

July 29, 2011

Space Marine's are AWESOME!

I've been playing a lot of Dawn of War: Kill team lately and felt compelled to sketch a space marine. If you don't know anything about the Warhammer franchise I'd strongly recommend you check it out, the designs are pretty bad ass, and any Dawn of War game that I've played so far has been a ton of fun.

July 27, 2011


Trying out something new here at the blog, and I'm hoping it'll be well received. I've added another page (you can find the tab for it just under my banner) titled Request-A-Sketch. Head on in there and put your requests in the comments section. I'll collect 'em and do at least one a week as a warm up. If I choose your request I'll email you a high rez version of the image sized for a wallpaper, and if I did the piece traditionally, might even mail you the original!

Hope you guys like the idea, and as always feel free to make suggestions if you've got 'em!

As for new art, I've been spending a lot of time working on projects that are in the planning stages. There's been a bit of character design going on, but for the most part I've just been making notes, and trying to come up with some great stories. I'm making progress, but unfortunately it doesn't leave me with much to post on here. I'm hoping the addition of Request-A-Sketch will help to change that, but for today I've got something else for you.

A few weeks ago (just before the CCEE) my good friend Dan was staying with me, and as we used to do back in the college days, we tried to come up with a little warm-up drawing challenge. We decided to do a  design of a humanoid insect (or insectile human), so I did upa sketch of a DnD character I came up with years ago. 

I present to you Chit, the halfling/insect rogue!

July 18, 2011


Finished up the commission last week, but I wanted to make sure the person who paid for it had a chance to enjoy it before I posted the final version on here.

I've since received a very positive response from him (which totally made my day) so now I'm happy to share.

July 7, 2011

This still counts as Wednesday, right?

I figure if I haven't slept yet, then the day hasn't changed. So for me it's still Wednesday, and here I am posting the inked version of my commission like I said I would.

I'm not overly pleased with the goggles, so I think I'll end up going back into that section while I color it, but otherwise I'm pretty happy. What do you guys think? Any crazy errors that I just can't see? I always get worried that I've been working on a piece too long, and won't have the chance to properly edit it once I'm done. It's important to step away so that you can come back with fresh eyes, but often deadlines don't allow for that.

Ah well, sleep beckons. G'night folks!

July 4, 2011


So it's been two weeks since the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo and I still haven't finished the commission I got. I feel pretty bad that it's taken as long as it has, but there're extenuating circumstances, and unfortunately I've been busy with unrelated projects and problems.

That all said, I've been excited by the commission, the request is pretty cool and a little outside my comfort area, so I've been picking away at it whenever I've had a free moment.

Today you get the the first draft. I've since taken it into sketchbook pro to ink it, but I want to point out that it's missing a large component of the piece. The commission brief was for a Steampunk girl laying down looking up at the camera, with a snake curled around her. During the inking process I've been working out how to lay in the snake, so I'll post a couple different versions of that on Wednesday. My plan is to have it wrapped up by Friday at the latest, so you should see the final version in the end of the week post.

June 28, 2011

Time Traveling Tuesdays, Part 2

Ok, so part one was the first 2 pages of a 6 page comic that I did about 10 years ago. It was some good fun at the time, but looking back makes me grimace. Even the character design (or perhaps that's especially the character design) is cliche and deserves some serious reworking.

Unfortunately the terrible storytelling continues, though page 4 isn't nearly so bad as the preceding pages. I'd even go so far as to say that I kind of like the first panel... But damn am I glad I don't try to render rock like that anymore... blech!

Rough Stuff

A couple sketches from when I was working out the Black Cat print.
Inked these as warm-ups. I've been sifting through the 'net in search of interesting reference material, and I figured it might be interesting to ink over some of it from time to time. Lord knows I could use the practice, so don't be shocked if this kind of stuff starts popping up every now and then (though in the future I'll make sure to keep the original so you can compare...)

June 24, 2011

A couple more prints from the CCEE

Had a tough time with the Venom piece (as you've likely noticed if you've been following the blog) and it was no different when it came time to print the sucker. Colors were too dark, the background was too similar to the character, and on and on it went. This is the version that I was happiest with though, and I don't think I'm willing to go back into it anytime soon, so this is how it's going to stay... finally.

As for Thor, things went pretty smoothly. Inking was relatively painless, colors didn't take too long, all in all it was a lot of fun.

Oh, and HUGE thanks to Dan Markin, who was instrumental in my getting these pieces done, and looking as good as they do. That boy knows his color, and he's always happy to help. I don't think the con would have been nearly as enjoyable for me if I hadn't had him helping me out behind the scenes for an entire week before hand.

June 23, 2011

Con sketches

Had a ton of fun with these, and found them to be a really rewarding experience. Hopefully the fine folks who received them are just as happy.

June 21, 2011


First off I'd like to apologize for not posting in almost a month. A chunk of that time was vacation, and the remainder was prep for the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo, which I attended as an exhibitor for the first time this year. I'll try to ease back into the regular schedule over the next week or two, but until then you'll have to forgive me as I would like to spend some time focusing on the convention and related topics.

Cons are a lot of work. A LOT of work. And they should be. I think any artist who took it easy and just "showed up" did a disservice both to themselves and their fans. I paid a hefty price, in that I wasn't properly prepared for this con, and so the last couple of weeks have been spent desperately trying to finish work and get things printed and organized. It sucked a bit, I didn't get to see much of my fiancee, nor was I able to spend much time with my good friend Dan Markin, who was in town for the convention. On the other hand, I think the time I spent digging in and making sure I had some great work to display paid off. My first time at the expo was a fantastic experience, and I even managed to make a bit of money.

I'm pretty happy with the way things turned out this year, and I think next year will be significantly better. I have several ideas for new con specific projects, and with any luck I'll have some personal work (like a webcomic perhaps?) up and running long before the next con arrives. I'd also like to seriously consider branching out and attending some other cons, though I'm not sure that my work is at a point yet where I'd be making enough to pay for hotel, travel and whatever other expenses are incurred by out of town cons.

Anyways, I'll be back tomorrow to talk some more about the con. For now, enjoy a few pics!

A couple shots of my booth, for those of you who didn't get the chance to check it out :)

Did this up when I realized I didn't have any female characters set for print. Turned out to be the best seller!
That's it for today folks. Come back tomorrow and I'll continue my discussion about the con. There's a lot to process, but I think it's worth it to talk about it all.

May 25, 2011

Even more Venom?

I hope you fine folks out there aren't getting bored of all the Venom pics, cuz it's time for another one!

Haven't had much chance to get to anything else this week (vacation coming up, and spent an unfortunate time working my other job) so it's more Venom for you today. I'm really loving the changes that have occurred in the last couple weeks, and I feel like the piece is starting to take on a life of its own. I've been trying to avoid cutting corners, and I've done a bit of reading on the ConceptArt.Org forums regarding digital painting, and the way colors work together. I'm far from mastering it, but I think I've come a long way.

Highlights this week are the carapace on his back, and the changes made to the arms. Hope you guys dig it!

Next up I'm going to be tackling the tail, and maybe tweaking the teeth a bit. After that I might actually call it finished!

Along with the Venom piece, I've been roughing out ideas for a Black Cat print. I'm thinking it would be prudent to have at least one print with a female character, and since I'm already working with the Spider-man mythos, I opted to continue in that vein.

Here're some quickies...

May 24, 2011

Time Traveling Tuesdays!

I posted my very old design attempt at Orcs last week, so I thought I'd follow it up with a series of comic pages in which said orcs appear.

There's six pages (of a planned 8) but I'll break them down into 2 page chunks so that I don't blow through all my work in the next few weeks. Apologies for the quality of the scans, I don't have an 11x17 scanner (yet) and these pages are over a decade old...

Quick tip for those who don't know: pencillers will often use mark a series of x's into a space they intend to be filled with black.

Gotta say, it's kinda painful to look at these now so I'll try to do a quick summary of the story, but I don't want to spend too much time on 'em.

I was looking to create an adventure story, and these first pages were supposed to kick off the grand quest. It starts off with a young man exploring an underground cavern, in the hopes of finding some treasure. He drops down into a room full of gold and trinkets, and picks up a gauntlet with a huge gem on it.

The drawings themselves are kind of fun from time to time, but man oh man is the storytelling bad. I think I'll go through and do a crit of these and some of my other pages at a later date, maybe make that an every Thursday thing.

May 23, 2011

Ugh, Mondays

In the midst of a stretch of shifts, and I haven't had a lot of time to get drawing. On top of that, my main email address seems to be under fire, and I just spent an hour trying to get it back from whoever hacked it this time.

That said, I've got a couple rough sketches for today. First up is another attempt at the design of Valor. I've got the basics figured out, but the details of waistline and upper legs are giving me a headache. I don't want it to be all one piece, but I don't want it to look like he's wearing a diaper either...
Next up is Vengeance. He's a major player in the story I'm looking to tell, so I won't dive into details. You'll probably be seeing a lot more of him in the coming months though, as I really want to have his and Valors designs as finished as I can get them.

May 20, 2011

Weekly Warm-ups

Trying to get a few different weekly "events" organized for the site, so that I have a bit of routine to rely on when looking through my art to see what I should share with everyone.

I'm thinking Fridays will be the day that I recap the week's progress, as well as post a few of my favorite warm-up sketches.

First off the warm-ups.
I don't have a lot to say about these beyond the fact that Art Adams is effing awesome. Well, that, and I was having some fun with the pencil tool in photoshop, and working on some serious contour lines.
And now the recap.
I've stripped Thor back down to just inks, and am trying to get them finished up ASAP. So far I'm liking where it's going, though I'm noticing that without the hair blowing the whole piece loses a ton of its energy. Guess I'll have to make a point of getting that back in there soon.
The working title for this one is Fighting Time, which I really don't like. Unfortunately if you fill your directories with Untitled#1, Untitled#2, Untitled#3, etc etc, you spend a large chunk of your day trying to find the piece you want to work on, instead of actually working on it. So it got a name, and if you fine folks out there have suggestions, please shout 'em out. My goal here is to match it up with the banner logo at the top of the site here, but it's kind of a pain. Not only did I do the banner at 72 dpi, which is totally unprintable (it'll come out a jaggy pixelated mess) but I also did it in dimensions that no printer is going to want to work with. So I'm stuck trying to rebuild the composition while at the same time hoping to keep the vibe that the banner has. Wish me luck... Oh, and I'm thinking I'd like to put a quote on the right hand side, something that involves mans constant battle with time, but I haven't been able to find one yet. Suggestions are welcomed.
Finally we've got Venom. I think it's coming along quite nicely. It's a got a crap ton of work to go, sure, but it's looking pretty bad ass as it is, and if I can carry the style throughout the piece I'll be very happy with it. This one's just going through the detail work, so it might be tough to spot the changes from last time. One thing I'm a little uncertain of is the anatomy of the front most forearm. Once I get wrapped up here I'll take it to CA for a review before calling it officially done, but if anyone can explain/redline the issue and the proper way to deal with it I'd greatly appreciate it.

And that's it for this week folks. G'night.

May 18, 2011

It was Wednesday today? Oops...

Was about to head to bed when I realized what day it was. Sorry about that folks, guess I should pay more attention if I'm going to claim to have any kind of regular schedule here.

I spent most of today working on Venom, and I think it's coming along quite nicely. Not a lot to say about it though... If you see any glaring errors, or have some brilliant suggestions, feel free to send 'em my way. Feedback is always appreciated.

Did some sketching last night, trying to work out a villain for Valor. I wanted something with a power/threat level similar to the Hulk, but wasn't interested in yet another really big, strong, tough guy. So I started working on a telekinetic. Think Tetsuo from Akira as a super villain instead of a misunderstood kid. Dunno if it'll stick around, I think I'd rather more of a costume and less "normal" clothing, but I might keep the cape as a bit of an homage.

May 17, 2011

Time Travel!

Turns out I have a time travel device in my studio! I call it, "the drawer" and kept safe within it is a good chunk of my creative past.

I was rooting around in there today, trying to find some notes I had scribbled down back in high school, and I thought it might be fun to share some of the old work.

First up is Orcs! Way back when I was trying to develop a fantasy world and it seemed like orcs were a necessity. I had been reading Scion at the time, and was loving Jim Cheung's artwork, so that influenced the style quite a bit. Concept wise I was looking for a race of Incredible Hulk type creatures. Massive warriors who had perfected the art of war over centuries of infighting. They pop up here and there in other pieces I found in the drawer, so I guess I liked the idea.

May 13, 2011

More Venom

Posted my Venom and Green Goblin pics on the boards, and some decent feedback. So now it's back to the drawing board!

Sadly I haven't made much in the way of "progress", so I'll toss in a color rough of my Thor piece too.

May 12, 2011


First off, apologies for missing the wednesday update. I was planning on posting last night, but unfortunately blogger had other plans for me. All seems to be well now though, so I'll put this up ASAP.

Checked out the new Thor movie last night, and I've gotta say I didn't love it. I think the story was weak, the art direction was headed somewhere I really didn't want to go, and the casting was just... off. All in all not my favorite marvel outing by far. That said, I've been looking forward to it for a while now, and was kind of hoping it'd be a killer movie. And with Thor on the brain comes Thor in the sketch book.

Started inking this sucker after I went through and did a first pass of colors. I'm really not feeling comfortable with the whole digital painting experience yet, so I scrapped the colors and started inking.

Here's a WIP (work in progress) shot to tide you over. The plan is to have this on my table at the con, so if you've got some suggestions please don't hesitate to mention them.