Thursday, March 31, 2016

Raging Nathans / Nobodys split 7'' art PART 1

Earlier this year I was contacted by Josh Goldman of Rad Girlfriend Records to work on art for an upcoming Raging Nathans / Nobodys split 7". It was great timing because I had been wanting to work on some album art again and had worked with RGR before on previous album art for the Raging Nathans and also another band, robthebank.
Josh came to me with two fully formed ideas of what he wanted, so I could immediately dive in. Here's the two sides in various stages starting off with the Raging Nathans side. Here's my initial sketch based off Josh's idea and direction.
At one point I thought about painting the one side and going the Photoshop route on the other side to really differentiate the two, but Josh and I both agreed the painting just didnt have the right look plus my painting style tends to be looser and I really wanted to pack the details into this piece...
So, I switched my approach, starting off with getting some tight line art inked to color on the computer.....for inking I used a Sharpie fine point pen on marker paper to trace an earlier tighter sketch. Also I had a previous value study from when I was planning to paint the final piece (below). It's good to have this as reference when you are coloring on the computer, since you find yourself zooming in so much and can get lost. So it's almost like a road map for you. Also, as you can see, at this point the background was different with framed artwork on the walls and I hadn't even figured out how to handle the lettering on it.
After scanning my lineart, I opened it up in Illustrator and autotraced it to make it a smoother vector...this isn't completely fool proof and I still spend a lot of time cleaning my lines up in Photoshop, but it at least separates my lines from the background kind of like panes on a window. Then I saved my lineart as an EPS file and opened it up in Photoshop for coloring. Here's a screenshot early on of the coloring process and the final piece including a label for the actual record....
Next time I'll show the process for the Nobodys side. STAY TUNED

Monday, March 21, 2016


A lot of the times, people only see the last step in a job - the final piece. But the hours and hours of sketching, false starts, just kind of get lost along the way and left in sketchbooks and stuffed in drawers. You'll notice that for the most part I sketch using non-photo blue and indigo blue pencils - Prismacolor Berol Verithins. Here's a little sampling of some from over the years.....

Sunday, March 20, 2016

New Joe's Barbershop Chicago Hangover Shave Sundays poster

Well, my last post was about my first freelance job and this one is about my latest. As I talked about in an earlier post, since 2011 I've been creating posters for Joe's Barbershop Chicago for various events they put on. Every year he has dates for Hangover Shaves Sundays which includes either a haircut or shave, food, beer, and music. Here's the sketch I came up with after brainstorming with Joe and also the final piece.

Monday, March 14, 2016

First freelance job

I was looking through an old storage tub the other day filled with my issues of Juxtapoz, Star Wars Insider, Heavy Metal, etc. and came across a tattered copy of Transdimensional Times. People who lived in Columbus during the mid 90's might remember it - it was this crazy zine filled with government conspiracy, alien abductions, and is also the place where I consider my first freelance job to be printed. Back in 1996, I was a senior at Columbus College of Art and Design and through a mutual friend ended up doing ads for Stained Skin Tattoo and Body Piercing Studio located on High St. when it was owned by Durb Morrison. I got $10 to illustrate the ad and honestly I remember at the time not only being amazed someone was PAYING me to do art for them but also willing to get it printed. Since then I've had some amazing things done with my art (Hot Wheels, rock posters, motorcycle helmets, etc.) but I'll always remember the feeling of that first freelance job almost 20 years ago.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Radio Silence

For people who follow this blog sorry about the radio silence....working on a bunch of stuff that unfortunately I can't quite show yet. One thing I can show is the new t-shirt design for this year's Daddy Kool Record Store Day event. This year's RSD ambassador is Metallica so I channelled a little Pushead and old school Metallica designs.
These will be available at Daddy Kool Records on the day of the event (April 15th) and I'm sure will be available for online sales soon after.