Friday, 29 February 2008

Elephant Research

My good friend and ex-colleague Matt Dawson did a few pieces of work for a courageous lady called Kate Evans who works with elephants in Botswana.
Our mutual pal, Phil (a source of much inspiration) first suggested that Matt contact Kate, and recently suggested I submit something for her to use in her ongoing fund raising activities too. I submitted the piece below. As she is often out of the country (understandably) I haven't heard whether she would like to use the piece. I'm a little short of suitable Blog material and thought I would share this piece with you all here in the information landfill.

To see more about the work Kate does, please pop along to the elephant research website. To see more of the work Matt does, check out his blog via the handy link above.

Monday, 25 February 2008

Illustration Friday - "Multiple"

Multiple identities and multiple personalities equals multiple dilemmas!

I loved Superman as a child, I used to rush around the garden in my blue pyjamas. On Saturday mornings I'd watch the George Reeves adventures avidly... of course the late, great Christopher Reeve, for me, was Superman and more recently I enjoyed "Lois and Clark" (Teri Hatcher didn't have anything to do with that at all!).

I like the concept that despite the invulnerability of Superman's body, he is inside, like all us sensitive souls. The new Superman, Brandon Routh seems to carry that vulnerableness in his portrayal of Clark Kent too.

I always felt for the position Clark found himself in... desperately wanting a normal existence, having multiple thoughts, feelings and attacks of conscience... all at superspeed! This week's theme scratched that particular itch in my mind, so I worked on this over the last couple of days. I hope you like it.

Friday, 22 February 2008

Vistobrahma Gallery

My "Cheeky" (Chica Brahma) Vistobrahma entry is up on their gallery! I'm pretty chuffed as I thought it was never going to appear.

There is going to be a public vote at some point... I'd really appreciate the support of those of you who can be bothered to go and vote when the time comes. Here is a quick link to the site again.
If you're worried that the gallery was slow to load because they had 100's of entries up, they've fixed it now and there only appears to be 33. I'll try to keep my eyes peeled for when the voting goes live, but for now, I'm just happy about the exposure!

Thursday, 21 February 2008

Illustration Friday - "Theory"

I struggled with this theme... conspiracy theory, big bang theory... ?

Then I thought, Charles Darwin's Theory of Evolution seems a bit more relevant to my work. As most of my creatures and beasts are sort of evolution gone haywire anyway. This topic, given the struggle, is a good opportunity to show an alternate version of the Merilla, it's supposed to be a bit more moody with a kelp forest-y backdrop.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Butterfly Fairy

This was done before Tinkerbell. I'd done a really quick sketch for a pitch and liked it enough to finish it up for a meeting I had. I'm not sure I really like the Lady Cottington's Pressed Fairy Book feel I've got going on, as that is now perhaps a little clichéd.

There are things I like about it... but all in all it's just a touch too "seen it before". I think Tinkerbell benefitted from the fact I had already done this.

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Valentine's Day Redundancy

There is light at the end of the tunnel.

Well, after nearly twelve and a half years, I am being made redundant in my capacity as a designer of promotional toys.
This is a good thing as I hope it will allow me to see whether I can make it as a freelance illustrator or not. With the support of my lovely wife Vicky (happy Valentine's day sweetheart), my family, some seriously talented friends and my agent, I hope it will all turn out ok.
This is my chance to make a childhood dream come true. Wish me luck, or even better, commission me...

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Vampire Creature

I hope I'm not boring you with all these creatures...

^ click image to open animation ^

©Marketing and Promotional Services Ltd.

The simple animation should show (I hope) the custom weapon and armour. Each of the characters had two such upgrades you could collect. It was a simple concept really, you added a printed acetate layer (that had the armour or weapon on it) over the top of your collector card, it changed the "top trump" ratings that each character had.

You could use both of the upgrades together or each individually... ratings went up as well as down according to what the upgrade was or did.

This was one of my favourite out of the 19 characters I did for the project.

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

I'm a Cereal Killer!

Wow, I'm pretty chuffed... My "Frosted Jacks" Cereal Killer design is going to be included in Kreepsville Industries' up coming book of the same name.

My work will be included alongside artists such as Bill Wray, Lou Romano, Nate Wragg, and a host of other illustration and animation luminaries! I am humbled and delighted!

Here's a variety pack taster for you to enjoy.

Frightened Flakes ©Jay Stephens
Rice Kreepies ©Wayne Harris
Shredded Feet ©Dan Thompson
Crispy Creepies ©Gabe Swarr

Check out some of the other amazing pieces of work on Doktor Viktor's Cereal Killers Blog.

Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Another Creature

This was yet another creature for the PODZ project. Please see my earlier posts here and here. This one was supposed to be a bit of a nuisance.

©Marketing and Promotional Services Ltd.

I also designed the logo for the project... we wanted a spacey, alien, sci-fi, stencilled - street sort feel.

©Marketing and Promotional Services Ltd.

Saturday, 2 February 2008

Illustration Friday - "Blanket"

This week my first thought was Linus (the kid with the security blanket) from Peanuts by Schulz. I always loved his art, not sure I ever understood the jokes though...

I always get the impression that security blankets are encrusted with snot and who knows what else... also, just try to take it away for washing and the screaming starts!

This was another quick digital sketch, about half an hour again, I think.

Frosted Jacks - Cereal Killer

Whilst checking out Lee Cosgrove's wonderful gorillustrator blog, and specifically his Highland Crunch, I discovered the brilliantly macabre Cereal Killers.

For the past twelve years I have been designing the sort of promotional toys that drop out of Nestlé and Kellogg's cereal. The satire and wit on the Cereal Killers' blog struck a bit of a chord with me and I felt that I was suitably experienced to have a crack at my own "Cereal Killer"...

Photo credit for the bowl of cereal goes to Jaci Berkopec from her Flickr account, check out her official website too. I found the picture with a google search and it fitted perfectly with my composition. I've tinkered with it a bit for the added Shining!

I hope you enjoy this and as usual, please feel free to comment.

Friday, 1 February 2008

Ninja in Colour

Matt's comments for the B&W version of the Ninja artwork, made me colour this up.


Last weekend my eldest niece was 21... I can't believe it.

Knowing that she likes Tinkerbell from the Disney version of Peter Pan, I decided to do my own version to give to her as part of her birthday present. I had recently re-read the original J. M. Barrie book as part of my research for my Peter Pan book cover

I was after mischievous and cheeky, but more so than with my Vistobrahma Competition entry. I also wanted it to fit with my interpretation of Peter. I'm not sure how successful this is, but she seemed to like it, so it was worth the effort.