Sunday, January 29, 2012

Retro Spring

A drawing for "retro spring", which I branded with my graphic design business, Fill Creative. The flowers are our brand colors. And hand-drew our logo. We have a space in our studio that we would like to hang posters that we change out every so often. So, I could see this being a quarterly/seasonal poster for that purpose, or used for mailers/email blasts.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Recent junk

After seeing the terrific art being produced by Justin, I feel a little sheepish about posting this stuff. I thought I'd wait until these recent ones were finished and put them all up at once. Here they are.

Friday, January 27, 2012

1st Cover - 'The Hobbit'

Hey, guys, here is the in-prog work for my first portfolio cover piece. I am doing 11 covers to various books. I have supplied the first sketch, sans reference (I still need to shoot pics for this whole thing), along with a colour study featuring where I would like the text to be placed. Any feedback would be much appreciated. The cover will be in oils, but I am doing most of my process work in the computer. Thanks, folks!


P.S. As I worked with this image, I was very unsure of how to proceed. There are some images I don't mind filling the whole cover. Others just don't seem to fit the bill. I also kept thinking, 'Even if I liked this painting, I would not pick this book up off the shelf. I started thinking of all the books I like and what is aesthetically pleasing to me. This final cover layout will change, somewhat, but this is pretty much it. I'll likely do my own text, probably based off of the writing on the map inside the book. Or I may just do something based off of this type-face. I really enjoy it. As for the back cover, I knew I wanted something designy, but related to the front cover in some way. Smaug likely won't break the frame in the final, but this is what I was thinking, in a nut shell. Smaug curled around his pile of gold, his smoke and tail (or maybe just the smoke) curling around the border. Either way, the back image will be bound by the same border as the front. Also, not too keen on the black I used for the text and border around the front cover image. I'll probably choose something more subtle.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

'In the Spirit of the Year of the Dragon'

Here are some sketches for you guys. Christina had mentioned if anyone else had been so inspired by this year's patron beastie. I guess I have been because my sketchbooke has been quickly filling with writhing tails and gnashing teeth and gouts of searing flames (not to mention maidens in distress :P). Enjoy! Smaug, the King of dragons, is a disgarded cover concept for 'The Hobbit'. The other Smaug is an element included in the final cover layout I chose. The other image is just a sketch.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Cover Design-a-palooza: Time to Vote on Wordsworth!

I am working on a joint venture with author Scotti Cohn on her cool YA novel, Wordsworth and the Dragon. I have done 6 cover sketches and we have a poll set up. Vote on your favorite at the link below.

Vote here:

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Interesting Article: Where have all the book illustrators gone?

 "Charles Dickens enjoyed close collaborative relationships with the illustrators of his novels, but now it's rare to find a picture outside the world of children's books. Is drawing a lost art, or could we be on the brink of a new golden age?"

What do you all think? I know some people who order the British editions of certain novels because they have better cover art where the US edition had a typographic solution or a cover they did not like as well. But wouldn't it be cool if more adult books had illustration including interiors?

Monday, January 23, 2012

More Year of the Dragon

As I mentioned on Chuck's post, I finished this sketch for my blog just as his amazing sketch popped up on our site. You cannot beat dragons... (Well you can, but they would toast you...)

Was anyone else similarly inspired? Anyone born in the Year of the Dragon?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy New Year!

Had a little time for doodling this afternoon. I've always wanted to sketch my own version of a Chinese Dragon. Now I just want to create more.

Tonight ends the year of the rabbit and begins the year of the dragon —the luckiest symbol of the zodiac. In Chinese tradition, dragons are charismatic, aggressive and succeed at everything they do.

almost everything.

Update Jan 23, 15:26

Typically, when I post, I put art up and then move on, but in the spirit of fun, I've decided to make this an ongoing project and continue posting dragon sketches until Chinese New Year ends on Feb 6. —or until I get tired.

Jan. 26

Christina's dragons are sweet and cuddly, Justin's are strong and awesome. Mine are cynical curmudgeons. Hmmmm.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Animated Video

Nice to see so many at today's lunch.

I completed this video a few weeks ago for the company I work for. It's my first foray into animation, and it made me realize two things:

a) Animation is fun; and

b) I still sound like I'm in 7th grade.


What CoupSmart Can Do For Your Business from CoupSmart on Vimeo.

Illustrator News: Troy Brown

Troy Brown appeared on fox morning show for a drawing demo, below is the link. The segment was to promote workshops he is doing in collaboration with the Cincinnati Public Library.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cartoon Succotash!

Hi everybody.

I've started a blog which I probably should have done years ago.
I have a few opinions as most of you already know!

Anyway it'll be about a lot of different things, depending on my mood/anger level.

Feel free to stop by and leave a comment if you're so inclined.

I miss everyone, and hope to return to you sometime sooner rather than later.

Monday, January 16, 2012

In the spirit of the Toy Hunter Cincinnati show tonight, my meager stash is safe...hard to get it flat on the scanner (scanned through the clear plastic cover) - ca.1977

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Best Magazine: The Artist Issue

Check out this article about Loren Long in the Best Magazine, Cincinnati.

C.F. Payne did the cover portrait:

Here is the article link: 

While you are on the site,  they also profile some other great artists:

Gail Morrison of Anderson twp., still life and landscape painter

Jimmy Baker of Northside, contemporary painter

Ted Gantz of Prospect Hill, sculptor and decorative artist

Matthew Kotlarczyk of Norwood, sculptor

Carl Samson of East Walnut Hills and Milford, portrait artist

John Ruthven of Mariemont, wildlife artist

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Toy Hunters on The Travel Channel

 Many local illustrators, sculptors and designers have worked with Kenner (now owned by Hasbro) over the years, so this should be an interesting show. 

I tried to find a promo clip but was unsuccessful. If anyone has a link let me know...

11PM Toy Hunters
Toy Hunters
Jordan Hembrough travels to Cincinnati and Miami in search of rare vintage items to sell at the New York Comic Con. He strategically maneuvers around reluctant sellers and an abating budget to land a big-ticket item for Comic Con. TV-G, CC

From the Enquirer:

"Collectible toy expert Jordan Hembrough goes searching through Cincinnati area garages, basements, attics and warehouses for vintage and rare Kenner/Hasbro toys on “Toy Hunters” (11 p.m. Sunday, Travel Channel).

It’s a one-hour pilot by  Sharp Entertainment (“Man vs. Food Nation”) for a potential series — though some involved here worry about the possible audience for the show at 11 p.m. on a Sunday night. So set the DVR.

Hembrough of Hollywood looks for old Star Wars, Thundercats and other vintage Kenner toys at the homes of former Kenner/Hasbro employees Rob Meyer in Anderson Township, Ron Boyle of Withamsville and others,  plus Queen City Comics, for him to take to the New York ComiCon, Boyle said."

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Dude, where have I been?

I finally got some internets, so I'm going to be around more :P Just thought I'd come over, throw something up, and see what happens :P This is the cover for my brother's Christmas present. I made him a role-playing game. This is sans text, pencil drawing with digital overlay, and eventually printed.

Hope you're all doing well :)


Monday, January 9, 2012

Cool Gallery Show: Charley Harper: A Bird's Eye View

 This looks like a great show; reception this Thursday.

DAAP Galleries in collaboration with the Charley Harper Studio present for the first time, a retrospective view of Charley Harper's career.  Many never before seen works will be on view, beginning with his childhood and tracing a path throughout his career, providing a unique insight into the development of the icon maker we know today.
Reception:  Thursday, January 12th, 5-7pm
Exhibition runs: January 9th through February 16th
Hours: Sunday - Thursday 10am to 5pm


DAAP Complex, 5th Floor
West/Main Campus, UC
513 556 2839

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Inspirational Artists: Richard Estes

This is a good way to start the year, talking about our favorite artists.

In the vein of urban landscapes, but not futuristic ones, is Richard Estes. I am sure you have all seen his paintings, but I have really been getting into his work lately. Such amazing stuff... I am in awe when I look at them.

His book is a must have for the collection:

Friday, January 6, 2012

Blade Runner Sketchbook

The almost-impossible-to-find Blade Runner sketchbook has been scanned to the internet for us nerds to devour! Full of amazing sketches by our beloved Syd Mead, it's sure to inspire anyone who likes anything related to sci-fi!

Check it!