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How To Create an Imagined Character

I shared my latest painting, “Three Companions,” last week… to a strangely quiet reception. I think it may have something to do with the current climate we are all living in. Social media was exploding with people sharing their stories, their art and their recent experiences in the new quarantine, creating a state of extremely […]

Work in Progress: Beware

These are strange times we live in. There’s not too many other periods in my life when something so global dominated my every waking moment to the extent that it starts to filter into everything. I think the only time I can really remember this happening was 9/11. While my daily life actually hasn’t changed […]

Work in Progress: The Collector

Some pieces are a struggle. I often think of these pieces as “learning curves.” There’s an interesting thing I’ve noticed over the years I’ve been working as an artist. I go for long periods where I feel in a comfortable groove and everything seems to be flowing smoothly. Then, I’ll take on a particularly ambitious […]

Endless Anatomy Quest: Internalizing the 3/4 View

A few months ago, I was digging through all my anatomy textbooks for a 3/4 view of the skeleton. I had been feverishly practice memory studies of front, side and back view skeletons, but the 3/4 was missing. What to do? I realized that I needed to come up with a drawing myself if I […]

How to Keep Up Life Drawing (without the commute)

A couple of years ago, I discovered an amazing resource for life drawing. Life drawing is one of these things that many illustrators do as students but have a tendency to drop later in their career. I’ve talked to so many of my colleagues that haven’t done any life drawing for years and the story […]

Value Structures: The Lessons of NC Wyeth

As it so often happens, I’m working away on a personal painting and midway through I discover that it can be much stronger than I thought. This happens a lot, especially with non client work. Because I don’t have to stick to a client approved sketch, the piece is subject to change as I find […]

Endless Anatomy Quest: Skeleton Obsession

Last fall, I started studying human anatomy seriously for the first time since I was in art school. I had a strong start, with about a month and a half of very rigorous training every morning. It was promising! I had recently discovered the theory of “deliberate practice” from the book “Peak: Secrets from the […]

Work in Progress: The Brigand

After finally getting caught up on client work, I had some time to get back to my latest personal piece, “The Brigand.” Sometimes, I feel a bit of frustration when I’m working on an exciting painting for myself and I have to pull away. But in this case, I feel the time spent away from […]

Making the Most of Your Reference: Props

Props are the spices in a reference shoot! A good set of versatile props add liveliness and excitement to a pose. Also, it is really great for a model to hold something roughly similar to the object they need for the illustration. I think every fantasy illustrator has given their friend a T-Square to hold […]

Making the Most of Your Reference: Costume Basics

Last week, I found myself doing a bit of online shopping looking for props. A new client has me working in the cyberpunk genre and I quickly realized that I was missing a few key props that I’ll likely be using over and over for them. I think the quandary of “what kind of costumes […]