Friday, August 26, 2016

Cthulhu Mostess Pies

Cthulhu Mostess Pies Ad

Click to Embiggen!

For those of you old not enough to remember, Hostess used to have ads in comic books in which criminals plans were commonly thwarted with Hostess Twinkies or Hostess Fruit Pies.  Also, it turns out I missed H.P. Lovecraft's birthday last week (August 20th), but I've been thinking about doing this fake Hostess Comic Ad mash-up for a while.  And I do have another Lovecraft-based mash-up coming up in the near future...

For those of you interested in the nostalgia of the Hostess comic book ads, HERE'S A LINK.  Enjoy!

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This was done in Photoshop.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Aliens - Contraxians

Contraxians


Here is the original entry for the Alien Race: Contraxian to the "Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe".

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Originally, I planned on just doing a proxy drawing of Jack of Hearts--a character I always thought looked pretty cool--the same way I sneaked ROM Spaceknight into my entry for Galadorians.  But, then I thought I should do up a female version, but all the designs I did for it just didn't seem to work for me for some reason.  So, I just scrapped it all and only vaguely called back to the character.

To be honest, I really overthought this one too much and it took wwwaaayyyyy too long to finish.  Ah, well.

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STEP ONE:  Here are the quick digital pencils, scribbled out on a New 900px x 1,350px document.

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STEP TWO:  And here are the roughs for the digital inks and color flats.  I didn't bother getting too detailed with the inks, since they were going to be covered anyways on the final digital painting.

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STEP THREE:  I built up the colors on a new layer, basically covering all the inks I did to make it more painterly/rendered.

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This was done digitally with Photoshop.

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Aliens - Courga

Courga


Here is the original entry for the Alien Race: Courga to the "Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe".

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STEP ONE:  Here are the quickly scribbled digital pencils on a New 900px x 1,350px document.

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STEP TWO:  Sigh, because I wasn't paying attention while working on this, I accidentally merged down the color flat layer, so I just have the finished picture.  So, I guess "Step One" is scribble something vaguely in the shape you want to draw, and "Step Two" is to color it.  Um, yeah...

As for this drawing of the Courga alien species, as I uploaded this, I am beginning to wonder if it looks a little bit like he was wearing old-guy pants pulled halfway up to his armpits.  Ugh.

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This was done digitally with Photoshop.

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Saturday, July 23, 2016

Cover Replica: Batman #251

Batman #251


Here's the original cover of Batman #251 by Neal Adams.

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Aaaaaaannnnddddd, at the risk of having to do another "Mea Culpa" (this time for Neal Adams rather than Brian Bolland), here's the cover replica I did for my pal (and Superman's), Jim, from Jimmy Jams Comics and Games here in Winona, MN.  

Ugh, these things are ginormous and take FOREVER to do!  Unfortunately, they are so large, the color is sort of off a bit and the lighting is a bit strange.  Oh, well.

The process is basically the same as my previous cover replicas...

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STEP ONE:  I cut a 20" x 30" piece of hardboard, and then glued a 22" x 30" sheet of Stonehenge (#140) paper using acrylic medium, and trimmed the excess paper after it dried.  I then used a mixture of gesso and acrylic medium to paint over top of the Stonehenge paper to prep it for painting.  When that was done, I drew a 1" x 1" grid and set to pencilling the cover image.

Once the pencils were done, I began to paint the large areas with acrylic paint.  The straight lines were done with a Sharpie marker and a ruler.  The other line work was done with a mixture of acrylic black paint and waterproof India ink and painted on with a round brush.

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STEP TWO:  Here it with most of the color laid in and the lettering about half-done in spots (less so in others).  Gee, I haven't mentioned that I hate lettering for quite a while!  Mostly 'cuz I'm not all that great at it and it is a painfully slow process for me.  Yeah, yeah, I'll get better with practice.  :-S

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STEP THREE:  Here's the finished picture.  To blend in some of the light-purple effects on the gloves and the Joker's suit, I used a drybrush method with the acrylic paint.  To drybrush, you use a little bit of paint on a larger, round, hog bristle brush, wipe most of it off on a separate piece of paper, then lightly brush the remaining bit of paint across the picture, which gives it more of a soft, almost airbrush effect.  When it was done, I sprayed some Krylon UV-Resistant Archival spray as a varnish.

There are a few wonky areas that bother me, but I was generally pleased with the finished painting.  Mostly, however, I was glad it was done and I can move on to some other stuff, now.  :-)

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This was done with acrylic paint on 20" x 30" gessoed Stonehenge paper glued to hardboard.

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Thursday, June 30, 2016

Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Aliens - Cotati

Cotati


Here is the original entry for the Alien Race: Cotati to the "Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe".

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STEP ONE:  Once again, here are the quickly scribbled digital pencils on a New 900px x 1,350px document.

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STEP TWO:  Here are the quick colors thrown over top the pencils, and I used the Eraser to carve out leaf designs.

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STEP THREE:  And here are the added highlights and shadows on the same Layer.

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This was done digitally with Photoshop.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Aliens - Clavians

Clavians


Here is the original entry for the Alien Race: Clavians to the "Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe".

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STEP ONE:  Here are the quickly scribbled digital pencils on a New 900px x 1,350px document.

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STEP TWO:  I decided to change things up a bit stylistically and did some quick color layouts, rather than the typical digital inks.

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STEP THREE:  I did everything on a single layer this time, just for fun and to try something a little different.  I added the highlights and shadows, and also made some slight adjustments to the character's facial structure after digging up my old copies of "ROM: Spaceknight" and looking at their first appearance.

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Created digitally in PhotoShop.

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Friday, June 10, 2016

Mini-Paint: 4-LOM

4-LOM


Saving the best for last in the series of  bounty hunters from "Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back", it's 4-LOM!  There is something about an alien, robot-bug head mounted on a C-3PO body that tickled the fancy of a young John Douglas.  To me, 4-LOM and IG-88 were the coolest of the bounty hunters.

The palette was: Titanium White, Naples Yellow (Red Lt.), Yellow Ochre, Burnt Umber, Cadmium Red Deep, Cobalt Blue (Hue), and Ivory Black.

This painting took about 2 hours.

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STEP ONE:  Here are the pencils, roughed in on a 5.5" x 8" toned, gessoed hardboard.

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STEP TWO:  Here's the first pass of acrylic painting using a #10 Flat brush, done over the course of an hour.

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STEP THREE:  And this is the final painting, which an additional hour to tighten up all the details, using both a #10 Flat brush and #10 Round brush. 

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This was done with Acrylic Paint on 5.5" x 8" gessoed hardboard.

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Friday, June 3, 2016

Mini-Paint: Zuckuss

Zuckuss


It's another Min-Paint!  The penultimate bounty hunter from "The Empire Strikes Back", Zuckuss.  Although, for a while, he was confused with his bounty hunting partner, 4LOM--Kenner even release the wrong name on the action figures for a while.

The palette was: Titanium White, Naples Yellow (Red Lt.), Yellow Ochre, Burnt Umber, Cadmium Red Deep, Cobalt Blue (Hue), and Ivory Black.

I'm not sure why, but this was one of those which spun out of control, time-wise.  It took about 3-1/2 hours.  Yeah, I know...

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STEP ONE:  Here are the quick, scribbled pencils, done on a 5-1/2" x 8" piece of toned, gessoed hardboard.

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STEP TWO:  Here's the first pass done with a #10 flat brush, which took about 90 minutes.

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STEP THREE:  And the next two hours (?!) were spent working on textures, highlights, and shadows with both the #10 Flat and #10 Round brush.  Yeah, I really don't know why Zuckuss took so long to paint.  I think it just got a little too "fussy" with the smaller brush.  Live and learn, I guess.  Well, live, anyways...

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This was done with Acrylic Paint on 5.5" x 8" gessoed hardboard.

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Friday, May 27, 2016

Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Forge

Forge


Here is the original entry for Forge in the "Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe".

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And, here's my version for the Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Redux Blog.  I was a regular reader of "X-Men" way back in the day, when they first introduced Forge.  Holy cow, that was a long, LONG time ago...

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STEP ONE:  Here are the digital pencils on a New 900px x 1350px document.

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STEP TWO:  Here are the digital inks, done with a 5px hard brush.

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STEP THREE:  And over a series of layers, I used a combination of grayscale and Multiply layers to colorize the drawing, with final highlights and darks done with a Normal Layer over top.

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This was done digitally in Photoshop.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Mini-Paint: IG-88

IG-88


Rounding the corner into the home stretch for the Bounty Hunters from "The Empire Strikes Back", here's one of my favorites, the assassin droid IG-88.  Sure, he just stands there the entire time and really doesn't do anything, but I always thought he was cool.

And, thanks to "Robot Chicken", I will never be able to not think about IG-88 daydreaming about doing a slam dunk (if you will forgive the double negative).  It got a delighted smirk out of me when they showed it .


The palette was: Titanium White, Naples Yellow (Red Lt.), Yellow Ochre, Burnt Umber, Cadmium Red Deep, Cobalt Blue (Hue), and Ivory Black.

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STEP ONE:  Here are the pencils on gray gessoed, 5-1/2" x 8" hardboard.

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STEP TWO:  This is the first pass with acrylic paint using a #10 Flat and #10 Round brush, taking about an hour.

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STEP THREE:  The next 90 minutes were spent working on working on developing the shadows, highlights, and details.  Total time was about 2-1/2 hours.

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This was done the acrylic paint on 5-1/2" x 8" gessoed hardboard.

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Sunday, May 15, 2016

Heavy Metal Magazine - Contest Submission

Heavy Metal Magazine
Contest Submission

The Lunar Bell Jar

"Heavy Metal Magazine", along with Threadless (they are mostly known for T-Shirt and art designs), had a contest and the Winner gets to do an actual cover for "Heavy Metal Magazine" and various other cash and prizes.  There is a soft spot in my heart (and head) for "Heavy Metal Magazine".  I have a bunch of random issues I bought in the late 80's and early 90's, and have a fondness for the European Sci-Fi/Fantasy aesthetic.  The animated movie was OK, but the magazine was where it was at. 

Of course, I found out about the contest on Sunday evening, May 8th, 2016, and had until Wednesday, May 11th, 2016 at 23:59:59 (CST) to get it done and submitted.  Hey, no sweat, right?  I mean, sure I wasn't going to be able to start on it until Monday afternoon at the earliest, and was going to be out of town for a few hours on Tuesday and Wednesday.  Plenty of time, right?

I spent a few hours sketching out various ideas that would fit with "Heavy Metal".  I had settled on a semi-surreal image of a person's face just beginning to fall away to reveal some sort of alien horror, with various objet d'art in the background.  One of those objects was the Moon in a bell jar, which is an image I've kept in my head since high school (that's a long, LONG time ago, folks!).

Once I drew the moon under glass, I thought about the backstory involved and I saw an astronaut reaching out to the moon and taking it in hand.  I immediately decided to toss out my original idea (well, it's not like it was all that original) and go with the Lunar Bell Jar idea.  It made for a better story image and amused me... well, I'm first to admit I am easily amused.

I almost gave up several times, figuring I just wouldn't have time to get it done, so I was wasting my time.  But, I kept going and did get it done with plenty of time to spare.  Yeah, I couldn't believe it, myself.

After it was finished and submitted, it looks like you are supposed to promote your design through Facebook/Twitter/Social Media (I don't truck with those things, assuming--correctly for the most part--no one really wants to contact me that badly).  And, since you have to sign-up for their website to vote, I'm not going to push that, either.  

In fact, I wasn't even sure I was going to post my submission because of it, but I am trying to post more pictures to this Blog and I'm not going to bother promoting it--just putting it up for its own sake.  Knowing that I got it done in time and it was possibly stared at for a few seconds by Grant Morrison (one of my favorite comic book writers and the Editor in Cheif of "Heavy Metal Magazine") is good enough for me.  

Besides, looking at a bunch of the other 500+ submissions, whilst mine is nowhere near the bottom, there are quite a few which I think are much, much better.  Also, I saw a couple submissions involving human-shaped masks sliding away to reveal monsters, and a whole bunch of astronaut-based designs--several of which were fantastic!  So, there you go.  If I somehow win (SPOILERS: I won't), y'all will be somewhere in the top 15 to 20 to know about it.  ;-)

Anyhoo, below are the steps involved in creating the digital painting for those who are interested.  Or even those who aren't interested, they are still there for you to skip over.  :-D

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STEP ONE:  I opened the template they supplied in PhotoShop (2,475px x 3,338px / 300dpi), I roughly sketched out the design using a Chalk Brush.  They provided the Logo among their submission kit and used just a simple outline and turned it white.  It seemed more fitting that way for a space-based picture (see below).

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STEP TWO:  I roughed in some more of the painting.  I decided to do the Moon and Earth on separate layers, as well as the astronaut.  With that much done, I tricked myself into thinking I was almost finished and decided to press forward.  Yeah, I still had LOTS of work to do, yet.  It also took me a long time to get the Moon painted correctly; lots of me going back and forth with various gray scale tones until I got it right.

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STEP THREE:  I finished up the astronaut and worked on the highlights and shadows, as well as the shine on the mirrored helmet.  Overall, I'm mostly pleased with it (the titular Bell Jar is a bit off, IMHO).  It could always be better, of course, but for the time I had to finish it, I'll just take the fact I got it done as a "W" in the "Win" Column.  Take your victories where you can get them, folks.  :-)

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This was done in Photoshop.

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Friday, May 13, 2016

Mini-Paint: Dengar

Dengar


Continuing on with the Bounty Hunters from "The Empire Strikes Back", this time 'round, it's Dengar!

The palette was: Titanium White, Naples Yellow (Red Lt.), Yellow Ochre, Burnt Umber, Cadmium Red Deep, Cobalt Blue (Hue), and Ivory Black.

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STEP ONE:  Here are the pencils on a 5.5" x 8" piece of hardboard, with gray toned gesso and matte medium over top.

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STEP TWO:  This is the first pass of paint with a #10 Flat brush, done in about 30 minutes.

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STEP THREE:  The last hour-and-a-half of the painting was spent working on the highlights and shadows, and going back over to tighten up some details here-and-there without going overboard (which had been known to happen a time or two to me).  :-)

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This was done with Acrylic Paint on 5.5" x 8" gessoed hardboard.

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