Tuesday, March 29, 2016

STUDIO SPACE: Anthony “Tank” Mansfield

Location: Kenwood (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Social Media: Facebook, Tumblr, and Instagram: anthonytankmansfield Twitter: tankofalltrades
On the Drawing Table: Currently it has been a lot of Mr. Redlegs drawings because I am excited for the season to start, even though I realize it’s going to be pretty painful.
Coming out soon: My friend Jaimie Filer and I are going to be doing a series of live art events this spring and summer. 

How did you get your start as a professional artist? 

I remember one time, shortly after graduating from art school, someone asked me, “So are you working here because the fine arts painting factory isn’t hiring?” While I learned a number of things in college, how to market my work and be a businessman definitely wasn’t part of the curriculum. Over the past 15 years, I’ve acquired those skills from a lot of hard work, learning from my mistakes, and my biggest strength/weakness of being too hard-headed to quit doing art. During that time, I have taken part in over 100 art shows across the United States including Chicago, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, and Los Angeles. Last year, I took part in my first international show in Germany.

Describe your work.  
In short, I would call it Lowbrow/Pop Surrealism because that is the style of artwork I’ve always identified with. My current work has a lot of stoner-metal qualities to it as I’ve been influenced by Heavy Metal magazine, Brian Bolland’s work on Judge Dredd/2000 AD, Jack Kirby, and album covers and T-shirts whose subject matter includes monsters, space, battle axes, etc. I’ve been working on putting more straight lines into my work to create textures and shadows. 


Tell about your workspace.
I work from my couch. My wife and I live in a two-bedroom condo that is part home office, part library, and part art storage. I work from a large IKEA coffee table and art boards. I also do a lot of work in my sketchbook to lay things out. I also store things in plastic drawers and pint glasses. 


What are your favorite materials digital and traditional?
I enjoy working with 2D media such as graphite, acrylic paint, or color markers. Currently I am working with inks because it fits the size of my workspace and I really enjoy what I am doing with them. They give me an opportunity to move what I do in new directions.  

What’s your typical workday/work session like?
Sit down. Put something on TV to listen to or watch or listen to a podcast. I rarely listen to music unless I am doing live art or I am on a time crunch. I’ve started to work in warm-up sketches before working on my current project. 

What do you do to keep yourself motivated as you work?
I can’t stop drawing. It’s a habit at this point and I am constantly sketching things. I see people like Mike Maydak, Big Meas, Skinner, Aziritt, and more just putting out incredible stuff and it makes me want to create things.

What is your dream job? 

To create a fictional world that others are emotionally invested in.

Do you keep a sketchbook?
Yes, I think it is one of the most important things an artist can have. I need a place to work out ideas and write reminders down for things I need to do. 




What do you listen to while you work?  
Either I am listening to something that is on TV or I have a podcast on. My go-to podcasts are the Joe Rogan Experience, Fighter and the Kid, Knife Edge Chop, the Watching Dead, Game of Thrones the Podcast, Straight Shoot, and the MLW Network.

What are you reading/listening to on Audible? 
I’ve started to get back into comic books lately actually. Currently I am reading The Walking Dead and The Humans. I am planning on picking up Southern Bastards next.

Who are your artistic influences? 
Derek Hess, Robert Williams, Brian Bolland, Jack Kirby, Frank Frazetta, Tom Neely, Skinner, Aziritt, and more. Locally I am surrounded by so talented friends and peers who push and encourage me whether they know it or not: Jaimie Filer, Mike Maydak, Christina Wald, Justin Stewart, Pam Kravetz, Carol Tyler, Jason Snell, and James Billiter.

What do you do that is not art related that inspires you? 

I’ve always found playing video games to be inspiring and it’s definitely my go to stress reliever (along with lifting weights). The modern era of video games are beautiful and I love exploring the worlds in Bioshock, the Fallout universe, and Gears of War. I am always going to be a sucker for a dystopian future. 

What was the best advice you got in your career so far? 

One of my former professors who I never saw eye-to-eye with said, “Great painters don’t paint when they want to paint; they paint when they don’t want to paint.” That really hit home for me because I’ve seen a lot of people who play artist and work when it’s convenient, but I’ve learned that if you want to get better, you must constantly be producing work and trying new things even when you don’t want to.

What is your favorite color?  

Black. It defines things and creates contrast. 

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Giclee print sources?

I'd love to chat with anyone here who's had experience with local giclee printers...asking chiefly for my son but may be looking for some sources myself later this year...thanks! John  513-608-0733 or jpmagg3@gmail.com

Monday, March 21, 2016

Sketch Outing to Music Hall

Jeb Brack, Christina Wald, Sarah Rocheleau, Amy Bogard, Vanessa Sorensen, Margot Madison, Darcy Vorhees

A group of us (Jeb Brack, Christina Wald, Sarah Rocheleau, Amy Bogard, Vanessa Sorensen, Margot Madison, Darcy Vorhees Van Horn) went sketching at Music Hall March 7th.

I have wanted to sketch Music Hall again for a while and we were filmed as park of a segment they are doing on me for Arts Bridge on CET.

Here are some of the sketches!

The sketchbooks! Photo by Amy Bogard

Sketch by Jeb Brack
Sketch by Sarah Rocheleau
Sketch by Vanessa Sorensen
Sketch by Christina Wald

Our next outing is to the Cincinnati Zoo on March 23rd at 9am before the next illustrators lunch at Dumesh. Hope to see you there!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Carol Tyler wins GOLD Award at the Society of Illustrators!

 Amazing comic artist Carol Tyler just won a Gold Metal at the Society of Illustrators for her Soldier's Heart graphic novel!

Here is a video of her recent show at DAAP.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Sarah Rocheleau at Art On Vine

    I will have a booth at Art On Vine in Rhinegeist Brewery Sunday the 20th 
1pm-7pm. I'm very excited to be back. It's a really fun event, great people, great art, great beer! Who could ask for more? 


Monday, March 14, 2016


Among countless other properties, Chris Reiff has been working professionally on Star Wars for two decades. His projects have ranged from designing toys and high end collectibles to illustration for children's books and technical manuals, CAD modeling for product development, even digital modeling for ILM. Chris went to Miami University where he studied graphic design and painting. After college he went to work in the toy industry for 10 years at a design/invention consultancy (SOEDA, Inc.) in Cincinnati. In 2006 he started his own design and illustration business and now works from home staying busy as a freelance illustrator and supporting a number of product development clients. 

Norwood, OH
On the Drawing Table:
Packaging art for future Star Wars toys, assembly instructions for stormtrooper helmets and other costumes, a limited edition print for Star Wars Celebration Europe later this year, and a few other things you'll have to wait to find out about.
Just Released/Coming out soon:
Just released assembly instructions for Stormtrooper armor kits (http://www.anovos.com/pages/star-wars-product-instructions), miscellaneous Hasbro Star Wars toys with my art on the packaging, and a couple of new Star Wars kids books coming soon.... (Titles not yet announced.)

How did you get your start as a professional artist?

I started working as a toy designer out of school. Came up with and developed some Star Wars product. That led to relationships and opportunities with Lucasfilm. That led to several large illustration projects. Those projects led to more. 

Describe your work. 

Recent projects tend to be fairly technical but I bounce around stylistically and cover everything from sketchy concept art to intricate and realistically rendered pieces.

Tell about your workspace. 
I used to have just a small home office, then moved into a large studio space in Walnut Hills with other folks for a while but I am now back to working out of the house. Over the years of working for myself various reference and inspirational pieces, along with a giant pile of other random projects, have swollen to take over a lot of my house. I have a old Steelcase desk that I sit at most of the time I'm working but, to keep things fresh, I will carry the laptop to other places in the house or even head out to more remote locations from time to time if the project and contracts allow. 

What are your favorite materials digital and traditional?
For traditional materials I really love the Draft/Matic mechanical pencils from Alvin. I have a full set with different leads and at different harnesses but my general sketching one is the DM07 with Pentel .7mm Blue Lead. Something about that one just feels right to me.

Digitally, I work primarily in Photoshop and Illustrator on a Mac using a Wacom tablet and on a PC for 3D modeling though I'm hopeful I can include an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil to the mix for sketching and a more streamlined digital workflow.

What’s your typical workday/work session like?
When I have a steady flow of work coming in I'm usually spending a full day in front of the computer bouncing between incoming client emails, CAD, Photoshop, and Illustrator. Sometimes though I'm just on the phone all day with my illustration partner working through some absurd pseudo-technical solution to a problem in the Star Wars universe for one of our projects.

What do you do to keep yourself motivated as you work?
Some days are definitely harder than others... There are so many distractions. Thanks internet! Usually though, quickly approaching deadlines and the next project in the queue mean I have to keep things moving. I do try to take short breaks in the day and reserve some evenings with friends when I can to make sure I don't get burnt out though. That's happened and its not pretty.

What is your dream job?
Designing, developing and running a museum here in Cincinnati dedicated toys and to this city's unique and rich local history in that industry is really my dream. I've been working on ideas for it for years and would love to see it thorough but tracking down appropriate funding to allow it to happen has been slow. There are so many stories of creativity and inspiration that cover generations because of the community of invention we have and have always had here in Cincinnati. I want to help tell those stories...

Do you keep a sketchbook?
I don't keep a regular/traditional sketchbook... I have several piles of notes on projects I want to eventually tackle and lots of little field notes style booklets I tend to carry around to make notes in. I am a little scattershot in my approach but that's how my brain tends to work most times.

What do you listen to while you work?
I generally have some TV series I've seen before playing on Netflix in the background or I'm streaming a random mix of music. Today happens to be a mix of the TV show Supernatural and Star Wars movies with musical interludes of Postmodern Jukebox. 

Who are your artistic influences?That's a tough one to narrow down. I don't think I'm unusual in that it changes constantly but I had a great foundation thanks to two teachers/mentors in particular. Mary Anne Meyer from my days in high school at St. X (she is now at St. Ursula) and the late Joe Cox from my time at Miami University. Without the two of them and a select group of others along the way I don't have any idea how I would've ended up doing what I do now. Of course there is a list of other teachers, designers, illustrators, and concept artists that are a huge influence. I've spent hours pouring over pieces by legends like John Berkey, Ralph McQuarrie, and Joe Johnston but I'm still inspired on an almost daily basis by friends and contemporary illustrators/designers that continue to produce amazing pieces.

What do you do that is not art related that inspires you?I think everything tends to be somewhat art related especially in how we look at our skills and in our interactions with the world. That being said... something that I'm fairly passionate about that doesn't fit the standard paradigms of "art" would be flying. I got my pilot's license in 1994 and have been flying a lot more recently. From just puttering around in small two seater planes, to doing aerobatics, or even at the controls of a WWII, open cockpit, biplane, flying is a way I've found to center myself and my often scattered thoughts. As trite as it sounds, it gives me a new perspective on things and is my own form of meditation. 

What was the best advice you got in your career so far?
The best advice I've received was to not to undervalue the work or my time. Some of these illustration projects take a massive amount of time and energy and require a very unique knowledge of the property.

How can we get best follow your art online/on social media?
facebook: www.facebook.com/ChrisReiffCreates
Twitter/Instagram: @Chris_Reiff


A couple days ago I found out that I made it into the 23rd annual Spectrum! I'm shocked and blown away to be among all of those amazing artists. I owe it to a company I work for (Monte Cook Games) submitting my work. Here's the link to the list of artists. http://spectrumfantasticart.com/spectrum-23.php
I don't know which of my pieces got in or how many yet. 

Also, if anybody is looking for a cover artist I am currently available and on the hunt for work. Portfolio can be found at joeslucher.com .  Here's some recent pieces I've made.

-Joe Slucher

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Summer artist positions

Hey Everyone,
It's that time again where I reach out to all my fellow artists...especially those that are teaching to ask if anyone knows of any artists or art students who are looking for a great summer job using their artistic abilities. I am losing two artists to UC Co-Op's for DAAP so I need to replace them.
I'm looking for artists to work at our Beach Water park location this Summer.....this job is all about doing ART all day, every day. This is a very exciting job opportunity especially for Art students both High School and College. This isn’t just your typical summer job, its an opportunity for artists to expand their artistic skills and get paid at the same time.
Artist Position; Duties will include: Custom painting of apparel and miscellaneous items with standard airbrush designs, as well as custom artwork requested by the customer. Also, the artists will be doing temporary airbrushed tattoos....all those fun things you see at Amusement Parks...lol
Ideally we are looking for artists who have good drawing ability and outgoing personalities. Airbrush experience is a plus but not particularly necessary as we will train. We want to see a portfolio which shows us airbrush experience(if any), drawing ability, a grasp of color, form and perspective. 
If you have anybody in mind, please have them contact us at the phone number included to set up a time to meet with us and show a portfolio.
If you could post this flyer for your students or forward the information to those artists that you feel would be interested, that would be much appreciated.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions….as a matter of fact, feel free to stop by our Tri-County Mall location anytime to see for yourself what a great opportunity this is for your artists.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Figure Drawing Class with Richard Luschek

Cast Drawing, 22"x 16", charcoal, by Richard Luschek
From Richard Luschek's blog:
Classical Figure Drawing -This class will be held in a lovely north-light studio downtown at the Pendelton.
The 8 week class will be from 10-1 and start  on Saturday March 26th- May 14th, running for 8 weeks.

The class will cover the basics of drawing the nude figure in charcoal. Easels will be provided. A supply list will be sent to those who sign up for the class.
-          Participants will begin by learning the basics of the visual language, the craft and order of drawing in traditional media.
-          Focus of class: to provide initial or further introduction to the steps taken and principles applied to the art of Figure Drawing. 
This includes:
            i.       the basics of composition
            ii.       the idea of the ‘gesture’
            iii.       using the tools available (charcoal, good paper) and creating a comfortable setup
            iv.       the execution of a start, the idea of the light and dark, and flat shadows.
            v.       Main focus that drawing is the interpretation of form
-     A final session with the model will focus on the head, the drawing or painting (optional) of the planes of the head 
Class fee is $300 and include the model fees. Class size is limited
Email me at richard_luschek@yahoo.com to register.