Friday, July 30, 2010

cf payne presentation

I was able to make it over to Wyoming to see Chris Payne give a little presentation on being an
illustrator/artist. He had a good crowd and gave a very professional an informative talk about two of his most recent pieces...this weeks cover of Time ...and the mural illustration for Gold star.

Nice job Chris!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Shermin the Vermin - Resurrected!

Yes, I have finally re-launched my comic "Shermin the Vermin." As nasty as he wants to be.

Shermin will be updated at least weekly. I've got three more of his comics ready to be posted and two more waiting to be born. 

Not for the easily offended, but he may be for you. Go see 'em at the Shermin the Vermin blog.(

Buzz at San Diego Comic-Con

Woodrow Hinton III and Andrew Bawidamann both had interviews at San Diego Comic-Con for USA Today.

Check them out:

Hopefully Woody will post a little about the con and some pictures here soon (maybe even one on this post). Great interviews though!

An Evening with Chris Sickels: Manifest Gallery

So, you missed Chris' opening?

Manifest presents artist's talk by Chris Sickels 7p.m. Friday, August 6

Last chance to see the phenomenal exhibit and get an autographed copy of the exhibit catalog and Sickels' own The Look Book!

Inside the head of Red Nose Studio. A presentation by Chris Sickels that looks in on his creative process, including behind the scenes and the making of unique Red Nose illustrations along with a look at his inspirations and how daily life in Greenfield Indiana feeds his characters their worlds.

This will be an intimate presentation, with seating very limited (about 20 seats). Admission is free but RSVP is requested. Seating is on a first-come first-served basis. Seats cannot be reserved. Donations gladly accepted in the donation box or through our website.

Manifest's regular hours on Friday are 2-7p.m. So the doors will already be open.

It is recommended that attendees arrive early to view the two exhibits on their last days open to the public. Fine dining before or after the presentation is available at Suzie Wong's a short walk down Woodburn on DeSales Corner.

Email RSVP to attend (include number of people):

Manifest Gallery address:

2727 Woodburn Avenue
East Walnut Hills
Cincinnati, Ohio 45206

Here are links to Chris' websites:

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Game drawing

This is a drawing of a goblin, Growly, for a friend's iPad app called Dungeoneer. It's used for keeping track of D&D stats downloaded from a person's Wizards of the Coast account.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Vendahl Caverns

Here is this month's dungeon for the TAG newsletter.

Questing Beast and Sea Serpent

Here are some images I just finished for some monster entries. The Sea Serpent is for the Hellfrost setting, the ice world of Rassilon. The Questing Beast is for the Daring Tales of Chivalry line. The Questing Beast is said to appear in times of change. It is the offspring of a woman and an incubus and emits from its belly the sound of 30 hounds baying. The beast was a part of the Arthurian tales and is said to always quest for the water that will finally quench its thirst. The sound of hounds made by the beast only ceases when it drinks.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Article about Comicon Featuring Carol Tyler

Great article featuring local comic artist Carol Tyler going to Comicon in San Diego by Lauren Bishop.

I look forward to reading the sequel to "You'll Never Know" debuting at the con called "Collateral Damage".

Of couse, Woody will be selling copies of "12-Way with Cheese" there as well.

Zen Birds!

I am very excited to announce the release of my new book Zen Birds!  In this book I illustrate thirty species of North American birds in a style inspired by traditional Asian brushwork.  I also wrote short poems that accompany each illustration and that describe the quirky traits and habits peculiar to each species.  This book is a celebration of the amazing lives of birds!

So if any of you out there like birds or know anyone who is interested in birds you can order it from your local bookstore or from Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

“Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.”
-Henry Van Dyke

Monday, July 19, 2010

ICON 6 Report

I am still looking for someone to do a guest blog about their experience at ICON 6, the illustration converntion.

In the meantime, here is coverage from Escape from Illustration Island:

Alos, would love a report about San Diego Comicon for the blog (Woody...) which starts this week.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Colonel Windpipe Needs You!

Hello, all!

A friend sent me a link to a fun Flickr illustration group:
Colonel Windpipe Needs You!

This is my entry! (It's going to be part of a large printed poster with proceeds going to charity.)
It struck me in a creatively-inspired groove, so I sent my band members right away!

Anyone else interested? A fun diversion from boring deadlines ;~)

Have a great weekend!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Photos of Something from Someplace!

Secret photos from an undisclosed location! *wink wink!
This is my desk at work. Making me claustrophobic!!
Happy Friday! What does your workspace look like?

I ♥ Sharpies! I ♥ the laminating machine!

Thursday, July 15, 2010


So this is what happens when I get bored working on storyboards and reach over and grab some paper from my printer and an ebony pencil.

Charliesaurus Rex

My son, Ben, has a dog that is apparently part Great Dane that is named Charlie. He also calls her Charliesaurus Rex, hence the drawing. Also included is her ever present sidekick, Bella, our Corgi.

New Atomic Art logo/web page design

Tired of the designer look I currently have on my website at the moment and wanted something more fun and apropos to my studio name, so here it is.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Can Anyone Write a Funnier Caption?

I'm pleased with my latest "Shermin the Vermin" picture, but I'm SURE there's a better caption possible. Any suggestions?

I'm trying to nail down a style for a single panel cartoon featuring the rat, and while I like this, I really need to thicken the lines and simplify. Perhaps a chunky style that would be clear even on an IPhone or Droid.

Click on the image to see at full-size.

Space clay.

Hey guys!
A quick snapshot of what I've been working on. This project is *nearly* finished--hooray!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Craig Boldman, local illustrator/writer

Nice blurb in the paper today about Craig Boldman, a terrific and talented guy who was one of the very first illustrator lunch cronies that used to meet with us back in the Dark Ages:

The online article unfortunately doesn't include this tasteful pic that's in the printed version; there's an Archie Comix stamp (among others) featured also. Congratulations, Craig!

Things I've Learned (Things I AM Learning?)

I’ve been reading through the ’60s “Famous Artist Course” as well as watching illustrator demos on the Visual Literacy Program. I feel like I’ve learned a lot lately and have added some “things to keep in mind” to my “things to keep in mind while drawing” list. many of these are “obvious” and get said over and over again. but sometimes, it just takes hearing it ONE more time before it clicks and really makes a difference. There are a lot, but here are jusr some of the new ones that I’ve been trying to apply…which is easier said than done.

- Think in big shapes first. This one is hard for me. I need to start developing thumbnails that reflect this idea. Design with shapes. Gary Kelley is GREAT at shape. Tagged along with this sorta goes the idea of strong silhouette. for instant, powerful reads, the image will be most effectively designed if i consider my large groups of values.
-Not every image needs a full value range. and not everything in an image needs dramatic value range. applying a simpler value structure to my big shapes will better help me design and image and create better focal points. Again, another difficult one for me.
-Detail can kill you. guys like mignola and Al Hirschfeld and alex toth got this nailed. describing things in as few marks as necessary (again, silhouette comes in here). ? put detail where you need it to reinforce focal points, but leave it out where it doesnt matter.
-Use saturation wisely. im’ a sucker for super-saturated images, so this one is tricky for me.
-Make a confident mark and LEAVE IT ALONE. it’s better to be slightly wrong, but made confidently than to have meticulously slaved over, indecisive lines that try to be perfect.
-embrace the medium. let digital look digital. dont try to make digital look like watercolor. just use watercolor. dont try to make inks look like vector art. let them be inks.
-Trust your instincts and embrace failure. there isn’t necessarily a “right’ way to do things. you can’t please everyone. George Pratt often says something along the lines of: if you aren’t screwing up, you aren’t doing it right.
-Every part of an illustration matters. think about how every piece is impacting the drawing. pay attention to every part and resolve it appropriately.
-You can’t save a poor drawing. you can polish a good drawing in a billion different ways. but if the foundation stinks, style can’t save it.

These sound so easy, and right now it's more of a checklist in my mind, but I'm hoping it becomes more intuition as I practice. John English recommends thumbnails to be 3 values, no line so it's really shape design. I've only played around and it's already so helpful to establish a good read.
Any other ideas?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Kenton County Library Children's Writer and Illustrator Workshop: Saturday, July 17th

Dave Richardson and I are doing a talk for writers and illustrators at Kenton County Library next Saturday.

Here is the description:

"Writer Dave Richardson and illustrator Christina Wald will lend their expertise to help those who are looking to publish work for children's books or publications. Discussions will cover topics such as writing for children's magazines, marketing your illustrations traditionally and online, and an overview of the process of illustrating a children's book from start to finish. Registration is required as space is limited."

Location: Mary Ann Mongan Library, 502 Scott Boulevard, Covington
Hope to see some of you there!

Additional information:

Anyone interested in registering for the workshops can call 859.962.4077 or email Patricia Richards at If you are also interested in the writing portion with Dave, he is asking that they bring one page of a sample writing they have for kids.

Also, if you are coming to the illustration portion, bring a portfolio.

Since the library doesn't open officially until 10, she asks everyone who registers to be here no later than 9:50-9:55, so that we can begin promptly at 10.There will someone at the front entrance of the library to let workshop attendees in ahead of time.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Sea Serpent Sketch

Here's a monster I'm working on for the newsletter. If you guys haven't seen the map I did for TAG, go here: Apparently, somebody emailed my boss and asked which monster that was (on the far right), specifically :P It doesn't exist in the bestiary, so for my monster this month I'm making the thing an "offical" monster of Hellfrost. This will be rendered in my usual bestiary style, graphite. However, I plan on using some new techniques I picked up since working on the aforementioned book. Any criticisms are welcome. It's not due till the end of the month. If you haven't seen any of my bestiary drawings, I've sampled a few here on the blog and on my website. Just click the next buttons left or right to navigate to them on my website. You shouldn't have to go far.

This image is (c) Triple Ace Games, 2010.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Cavern Map Sketch

Here's the sketch for the cavern I'm doing for a mini dungeon for the newsletter. This is an experiment one of the writers and I are doing. He found this contest that some gaming company is doing for people to submit their one page dungeons and we decided to throw it at TAG to see what they thought of the idea. I'm excited. I get to depart from the standard "bird's eye" view that Wiggy likes me to do. I'm going to ink it then watercolour over the inked image. So I have to make sure I'm really careful.

I just attached the final edit after the drawing was reviewed by, and tailoured to, the writer's specifications.

Edgar Allan Poe --color!

Hey guys!

I'd love some feedback on my work in progress....
I feel like I'm stuck! The sculpt is baked, so it cannot be changed. (I also need to sculpt the Gold Bug, which is what he'll be looking at. I'm going to add some tiny type to his journal as well.)

I'm adding color via chalk pastel to the wood panel background. Any thoughts? I could use any comments; I'm too close to this!

Is it odd that the sculpt is floating on the background?

OK--I'm stepping away to go outside & play! :~)

New Work

I'll be doing some monthly drawings/colour paintings for TAG that I'll be able to post with more frequency. So you guys will be able to see some of my new work I do for them. Got some monsters and a dungeon map coming this month :)


Chris Sickels: Manifest Gallery Show

Chris Sickels has a gallery show called Seeing Red (Nose) opening at Manifest Gallery July 9th and displayed until August 6th.

The opening is July 9th, 6-9 pm.

Check it out!

Manifest Gallery address:
2727 Woodburn Avenue
East Walnut Hills
Cincinnati, Ohio 45206

Here are links to Chris' websites:

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Book Cover: Frozen Stare

This is a book cover for a new book of poetry by author Oneal Walters released today (Canada Day!). He lives and works in Toronto and his company The Age Begins books is actively looking for poetry books that concentrate on women and world issues. Here is a link!

The art is showing a frozen rose starting to thaw. It was refreshing to do something more conceptual. It is a mixture of mostly paint and digital.

Arts Grants

In times when there are fewer jobs out there, there are some grants available out there to develop your work.
Here are a couple to get the ball rolling. If anyone knows of others, post them.


Each year, Summerfair awards four grants of $3,000 each to artists living within a 40 mile radius of Cincinnati. Awards are determined through a jury review of materials submitted by interested artists.

Deadline for the 2010 applications is Friday, August 27, 2010. All applications must be postmarked by that date - no exceptions! Winners will be announced at Summerfair's October meeting.

Entry form at the link above.


SCBWI has a variety of children's book oriented grants. Check out their site to see which looks best for you to apply for.