Cassius Clay aka Muhammad Ali

is the one and only replacement for our spotlight slime known as Bill Cosby. Way to ruin a good caricature Bill, this poster was pulled from the Nuggs location, and the heavyweight is coming through to fill the spot. It is a better caricature and a better pick for the spot anyways. This was a lot of fun to work on, the meeting of Ali Vs Liston 2, following the controversial first victory by the then "Cassius Clay". This meeting also contained controversy with Liston going down midway through the first round following a quick right by Ali, the ensuing interaction included this scene of Ali gesturing and screaming at Liston to "Get up and fight, sucker!" The process and sketch are included in the post details, thanks for stopping by. 


Colorado Plein Air Juried Competition 2014

is tomorrow! The annual competition brings together both a Professional and Emerging category, and is one of the best exhibitions of Plein air artwork in the midwest. I am honored to have a piece on display in this showcase. That piece is included in the preview, "Writing History" Oil on board, 12" x 16". It is one of the works that finds me going into abandoned places to capture the environment, a recent endeavor that has been in the works for quite sometime. I have also included 25 works completed over the last 5-6 months en plein air. These works are a wide variety of subject matter, all  soon to be available for sale on the website. 


Vector Portraiture

is the topic of this post, and I have been dug in creating many portraits in this style. The client for these works is Nuggs Ice Cream where you can see all of these works in large format print. I could talk on and on about these works, but will have to save that post for a later date, many other works to clear off the plate. With that said, here are the initial sketches on toned ground, with white prismacolor highlights. Alongside those sketches you can see the final vector portraits built from the drawings. Thanks for stopping in to view the work, look for more posts on the entire illustrated branding package from Nuggs soon. 


New work on the easel

involves many elements that I love, so this makes for a great personal piece. The final painting is 2' x 4' in oil. Excited to share the show information and the final painting. Thanks for stopping in I am off to California for work and some plein air! See you soon blogger! 


5 Years of Album Art

is a very deep and sacred post for me. I have to say, it is a real honor to be asked to create album art through this period of time, and within an industry which has drastically changed while creating for it. I am taking the time to reflect on the work from these years because I recently completed another album cover and it dawned on me. I never envisioned myself getting involved with album art, but having the pleasure of knowing so many young and budding musicians in those formative years simply equated to creating album art since I was in my fledgling stage during the same time. 
I think it shows in the work that I did learn and get better with each album cover. As time progressed other designers got involved in the projects, and you can see the different formats many of these albums eventually took. The other aspect that I have attempted to maintain was the idea of a "painted" cover in which I create original artwork that is then scanned and utilized within the digital finish. I have also included the works from "Art of Records" which have been a great way to pay homage to the love of album art. 
Some may appear as the same album cover, but were completed as variations on a theme as the great Prime Element went through a name change. I have also included a preview of the new album artwork. You may also notice a cover that never went to print that was always one of my favorites, and one album is missing, can you guess which one?! 

I want to say THANK YOU to all the artists I have had the pleasure of working with, from huge world famous artists to those that are still working and making a name for themselves!! Not only have I had the opportunity to work with these amazing artists, many I now know as good friends. It has been an honor and a pleasure to undertake the visual problem solving for so many different visions, I hope I have done the best I possibly can to fuse your ideas with the final imagery! And thank you to everyone reading and viewing this post, I hope you have had a chance to listen to these albums, and if you have not please check the links to do so! 


Civic Center Big Air off to Venice

Beach, California that is...given as a gift to one of the head engineers on the Big Air project from 2011. I was contacted by the family of the artist with a great proposal, to give this painting as a birthday gift to the one and only Dave McKay. You can see Dave in the Hot Wheels double loop video above, talking about some of the awesome specifics of his daily routine. A real honor to have met Dave, and to have seen his work in the flesh, not to mention get a chance to paint one of his creations. Dave also was involved with the Felix Baumgartner space drop, and surely many other amazing projects I have no knowledge of. 
This particular painting began en plein air, and finished in studio from memory and on location photo reference. Above is the progress from the field, 3 hours working time, and the studio finish which I spent close to 5 hours to finish the painting. Boosting contrast in the values, pushing and pulling the edges, also using a large flat and small filbert to lay in an indication of the elaborate rigging and scaffolding. I eliminated a few elements from the field painting as I saw ways to enhance the composition once in studio. I also added a foreground cast shadow to push the contrast to the focus of the painting, the bright light hitting the ramp entrance high in the sky above the downtown Denver backdrop.

It is a real pleasure to go out in the field to paint, you never know what might happen.

(Photo of progress by Dave McKay)

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Gracie Jiu-Jitsu

is the style, Royce is the subject of this portrait for an upcoming commission. Excited to get these started as I have always been inspired by this combat style, it's inspiration on the mixed martial arts genre, and the entire Gracie family who have upheld their style of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. 
I have been out of town, so I have many new projects and paintings to talk about, look for those posts as I get back into full motion at the studio. Thanks for stopping by to view the work. 

Graphite and Prismacolor White on toned paper 


Progress, Progress, Progress

on multiple fronts, but I won't hold you too long with words, sentences and phrases. Artwork in this post for an upcoming cover project and Nuggs work from today. Thanks for stopping in, more posts soon, I hope, bear with me. 


Brains and Brawn On Deck 9

 "Brains and Brawn" Acrylic, 8" x 32" 

"Skill over Swag" concept that started it all


online auction is live and this year's display showcase is upcoming on May 2nd at Brink Gallery. I had the honor of participating for the second time this year, and following the piece that I created for OD8, "Yojimbo Falls", I felt a strong desire to carry on my TMNT series and undertake the task of creating my own Donatello painting next. I had worked up many of these sketches last year in an attempt to brain dump what I had for my take on the characters. These sketches are included in this post, the first being a Cd cover concept that sparked it all, which will be painted sometime in the near future.....just love that concept. 
From that rough sketch I began to finalize the rendering and think about the background setup. I had a high vantage point idea in mind and set to gathering reference and penciling the final line drawing to transfer to the skate. Once that was complete I knocked out a few color studies, honing down the palette I would use on the final, and dove in headfirst. About 30-35 hours later, this is the final product. 

I was extremely pleased with the finish, and unbeknownst to me.....the new TMNT trailer got dropped the same day, but it didn't kill my excitement for the completion of this piece. The reason for that is because no matter how strange of a take one might have on the concept, in the end I will always enjoy the idea of delving into childhood inspirations to create from. I believe there is a tangible connection and inspiration that occurs when imagining and drawing using some of the first things that sparked creativity. For fans of these series we created stories and worlds around these characters while watching them on TV, playing with the action figures, or dressing up as them for fun or holidays, resulting in a well of imagination to pull imagery from. 
During the process of creating this painting, I attempted to take that leap and delve into those stories and worlds I had created. I always envisioned Donatello as such a badass, being so skilled with the "Bo" and simultaneously being the "brains" behind the crew. With that in mind I set out imagining my quintessential Donatello in color and expression. I also tried to imbue many of the other fascinations that I attached to the turtles, and inspirations that were created from this obsession. Many of those elements can be seen in the painting such as samurai weaponry/armor, and the aura of the big city. 
Painted in acrylic, I changed my approach on this piece, and others I have been working on, painting the focus first, and the secondary elements last. I generally enjoy working back to front, unifying tones and color as I move to the focus. I have attempted to change this process, and I am enjoying the results. 
The final painting was then captured, and mailed off to Missoula for the online auction. 

Follow the links below to bid on the deck, and all of the other great works in this year's showcase. 
Proceeds from the sales go to the Montana Skate Park Association for building and expanding the skatepark and skateboard scene in Montana, a great cause. I real honor and pleasure to participate in this show, and to have an opportunity to create personal works. 


"Quasimo-Dough" Final

painting for the 100 on 100 Art festival, presented by Birdseed Collective and 1/1 Magazine this evening at 841 Santa Fe. The 100 on 100 art show exhibits 100 artist from all works and styles, on the 100th day of the year. I was hyped to get a chance to render one of the "GhettDough" characters to full fruition. This particular character being one of my favorite from the StonesThrow collective and created by the amazing Jeff Jank, the art director at StonesThrow. My goal was to take the minimalist character Quasimoto and to render him in a fashion that breathes new life and emotion into his persona. The character's look for the most part is somewhat militant, with angry eyes and permanent smoke dangling from his mouth, so with this take I attempted to capture the character in a more cute, but also still dangerous fashion. Usually anyone wielding a brick as a weapon means business, so with the inclusion of the LP Rusto can and the brick, the cute look of Lord Quas face was intentional. This piece was a blast to complete and I hope you get a chance to come see the original work, and if not here is the digital version for your viewing pleasure. Thanks for stopping in to view the work, and look for more on many great projects in future posts. 

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