Sunday, October 28, 2007

Rough version of new work

Pin It Now! Here is the rough color comp I did in Photoshop of the new bookcover I'm working on. It's not for any particular story. I just thought it would be a good addition to my portfolio as an example of a fantasy bookcover. So, here it is...
I'm working on the actual painting of it right now, which is being done in acrylic.
I was fortunate in finding a really good model for the girl and getting some excellent reference of her.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

new work finally coming

Pin It Now! Hey all,
I know it's been a long time coming but I'm in the midst of a new illustration now. My motivation is having new work to enter upcoming competitions with. I'm sad that I already missed one of the deadlines I wanted to make, for the Illustration West competition a couple of weeks ago, but now I'm focused on getting work done for the NY Society of Illustrators competition. The deadline is Oct. 1 so it's still going to be very tight. It's been a while since I did one of my regular traditional-style illustrations so it's making me a bit nervous. But that's how it always goes. I mean, as an artist, with each new project it can be easy to freeze up and say, "I forgot how to draw!":) But you just have to push through it.
For this illustration I've decided to go with a different focus somewhat as I'm composing it to be used for a bookcover. This is a result of my experience at the summer SCBWI conference. I came away from that feeling like I should focus my efforts more specifically on the middle-grade/teen markets in the fantasy genre. These markets feature color covers with some black/white interior illustrations. I did a little reconaissance work after the conference and went to Barnes & Noble with my camera and took photos of all the covers from those markets that I liked (well, until a B&N worker stopped me and said I couldn't do that--luckily, I had already taken enough shots:). I then drew thumbnail versions of all the bookcover photos so I could get a feel for the way shapes are used and composed on those bookcovers.
I then drew up a design that I felt could be seen on a bookcover. I'm pretty happy with my drawing, so now I need to push through to actually painting it.
I've also been doing some sketches for another bookcover. For this one I actually read a teen fantasy novel and want to do a cover and some interior illustrations as an example of what I would do for that novel. That artwork is only at an early stage yet though.
OK, that's all for now.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Narniaweb contest

Pin It Now!
OK, I'm finally posting the picture I created for a contest on It's of the castle of Cair Paravel from the book, Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis.
The contest was for a promotional image to be used for the new Narnia movie. Unfortunately I was not chosen as the winner :( You can see the picture that won here:
And some of the other entries here:
I try to enter competitions whenever possible. Win some, lose some. This one was a little unique in that I did a drawing and then colored it using Photoshop. I usually go traditional but thought I'd experiment on this one.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

The SCBWI Conference

Pin It Now! Hey everybody,
Here's my post after having returned from the big SCBWI children's illustrators conference in LA. The conference lasted Friday-Monday, Aug 3-6. I was really excited to go after having had the chance to go for the first time 4 years ago. I hadn't been able to afford it/did'nt feel adequately prepared since then. But this year I set aside my tax return, bit the bullet, swallowed my pride, etc. and registered for it. This time I had the advantage of knowing some of the people that were going to be there. About 5 people from my illustrators group, "OC Illustrators," attended the conference.
The conference is held every year at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in LA. When you arrive and check in you are given a packet with all of your information and schedules for the weekend. Basically, each day there are several main sessions that everyone attends, and then there are a couple of breakout sessions that you get to choose. Each of those sessions had 12 different topics/speakers to choose from. This sounds like to many choices, but actually it was usually choosing between 2 or 3 of them because many were geared toward writers instead of illustrators, or were on topics that didn't apply to me--like licensing or contract negotiations.
The speakers they get are successful professionals in the field and share all kinds of good information. Sometimes they get some pretty big names in. This year the 2 most recognizeable names to me were Tamora Pierce (best-selling fantasy novelist) and Kadir Nelson (Caldecott Honor winning illustrator). It's pretty exciting to be there and to possibly see some of these famous people just hanging out by the pool or in one of the classes with you. If you can get your courage up you can go talk to them and they have only been friendly and nice from what I've experienced and observed.
I'm one of those copious note-takers so I came away from the conference with about 11 pgs of notes in my 7 x 10" sketchbook from all the presenters. My favorites were: Peter Brown (illustrator), Marla Frazee (author/illustrator), Tamora Pierce (writer), Kadir Nelson (illustrator), John Green (writer), Jesse Watson (illustrator), and Elizabeth Parisi (art director).
I also participated in the portfolio display on Saturday evening. Porfolios are displayed in one area along with any promotional materials you have. Art directors and editors are given a private look at your work and then it is opened up to everyone. I had my business cards, promo sheets, and promo bookmarks available with my portfolio. Of course, one hopes that some editor will be dazzled at your portfolio here and offer you a book deal right there. I feel my work measured up well there but I don't know if any editors or art directors will be biting.
I definitely enjoyed getting to enjoy the time with some of my fellow "OC Illustrators" there.
Now my challenge will be to use what I've learned and to keep my momentum from all the great energy there at the conference. I've got some ideas I want to get going on soon...

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I'm still here!

Pin It Now! Hey all,
Sorry I haven't posted anything in a while. I've been working on preparing my portfolio for the SCBWI Conference (children's illustration) in LA in well as working a summer temp job in an office...and this week, I'm entertaining my family (sister, bro-in-law, niece, nephew, and mom) who are here visiting from NY. Whew! I have done a little artwork too. I recently drew/painted a quick piece of artwork for an on-line contest promoting the new Chronicles of Narnia movies. I'll post that soon.
Well, that's all for now.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Podcast this!

Pin It Now! Hey all,
My audio podcast interview is now up! You can hear my lovely and insightful voice at and then click on "Podcast" And then...well, click on me!
the future is officially now,

Friday, June 15, 2007

alternate route

Pin It Now! Someone contacted me having some trouble getting to the interview by the copy & paste way, so here's another way to get to it. Just go to and then click on "Featured Artist" There you go.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I'm trying not to get a big head

Pin It Now! Hey, my first ever interview is now online! I was chosen as this month's featured illustrator at and was interviewed for the website. You can read all about me here:
Sorry the address is so long. Just copy & paste, baby.
That website, by the way, is the online site for the illustrators critique group that I'm a part of. We're all children's illustrators who meet once a month to show what we're working on and to share information and encourage each other. A really great group of people that I feel privileged to hang out with.
Oh, there will also be an audio podcast of my interview--which is a bit different from my written interview which I prepared beforehand. I'll let you know when that's up. In the meantime, you can also peruse the excellent previous interviews with other members of the group.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

up and running!

Pin It Now! Hey all,
Well, my exciting and new website is officially up and running now. I've just been fixing some last minute gliches with it--no doubt I'll find more later. I'm looking forward to having more time to actually create artwork since this website has been my main art project for the last couple of months. Hope you like it. I do plan on updating things whenever I can. One thing I want to add soon is another gallery, this one of sketches.
In other news, I did my first interview this morning--celebrity, here I come! It's actually for an illustrator's group that I'm a part of, The OC Illustrators (not that we are "OC" at all, believe me). Anyway, there will be a text version of the interview, as well as a podcast (impressive!). I'll put up a link as soon as I have it.

Saturday, June 2, 2007


Pin It Now! Hello all,
I've just created this blog for my website so I can share some of my goings-on, updates, witty observations, mood-swings, etc. etc. I hope to add new blogs on a pretty regular basis. For now though I've got to run (I know I'm such a tease) More later I promise!