Thursday, June 16, 2016

Happy Captain Picard Day!


In the episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation called "The Pegasus", poor Jon Luc Picard was being teased and embarrassed by his crew because Troi had decided to create a "Captain Picard Day" for the kids aboard the Enterprise. Some fan of the show, with way too much time on their hands translated the Stardate from that episode into the a Gregorian calender date and thus June 16th has been declared Captain Picard Day here in the 21st Century! To celebrate, apparently people all over the world create and share Captain Picard stuff. My cartoonist's group, the C.L.A.W. is no exception. Our newest member, Jennevieve Schlemmer combined efforts with Destiny City Comics owner Michael Fitzgerald to host a "Captain Picard Day" celebration which is now on display at Destiny City! Many fantastic entrees have been made, including a portrait made of beans and rice, a quilted/cross-stitched piece, a painting in which he looks like a Simpsons character and a painting in which the Captain's face is obscured by a cup of his favorite Earl Grey tea!

My contribution was a bit dark I suppose, and certainly no one would have dared offer it up at the CPD event aboard the Enterprise! But I had been wanting to do a Locutus of Borg piece like the one above for a while and this seemed like a good time to do it! It will be added to the book of prints that I take to cons.

Just to offset the grim nature of the image in this fun and cartoony environment--I added a wildly tacky frame covered in blue glitter! And no--I did not buy a regular frame and violate it in this way; I actually bought it like this!! But it adds a festive quality to Locutus' dour features and looks all futury! Below are pics of me holding the framed monsterpiece as well as a pic of the wall of the Destiny City Comics store (in downtown Tacoma) where this amazing collection of Picardalia can be enjoyed in person! (They are still hanging the art in this pic...so as you can see, mine is not on the wall yet.



Enjoy Captain Picard Day! Remember--resistance is futile. Make it so!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

The CLAW and The Father of DUNE!

Every year for the past several, my cartoonist group, C.L.A.W. has participated in Wayzgoose, which is a local hand-press and bookmaking festival celebrated at King's Books in Tacoma. There are local printing and hand-press artists and enthusiasts, showing and selling their work, letting people run tabletop presses and there's even a t-shirt print shop that has a silkscreen press set up that prints t-shirts right on the spot!

But the undeniable glory of the whole event are the groups that get to produce the giant 4'x 4' steamroller prints and the CLAW has always been one of the teams allowed to work with this medium! We create a design, carve it out in a large block of linoleum, and in the parking lot next to the King's Books building a steamroller waits to drive over the inked panel and large sheet of dampened paper (pressed between a sheet of plywood and padded mats, of course) and impress as well as emboss the image into the paper! The final printed pieces are beautiful things!

This year, however was particularly exciting for me because I finally had a design chosen to be our print for 2016! And what's more--our theme for the design was Tacoma-born, science fiction master, author Frank Herbert, the creator of the "DUNE" saga! Now, I didn't carve the block by myself--several members of CLAW, including me< worked on it in the week prior to the event. I fretted and worried about it though! I didn't want mine to be the first CLAW print that didn't come off right!! I had also had this stupid idea to use a second ink color to make the eyes blue, in honor of the "blue-within-blue eyes" of the Spice addicted Dune characters! And I had no idea if that was going to work either! So I worried! But everything went wonderfully smoothly! We cranked out our allotted 5 prints in record time and the admittedly crude method I chose to do the blue eyes special effect worked perfectly well! I turned out to be a fantastic looking print and the splash of color really made it pop! Anyway, here are a few photos from the event, including one of fellow CLAW member James Stowe and I manning the CLAW table inside Destiny City Comics (right next door to King's Books). If we look like we're having fun--that's because we are!

Friday, March 18, 2016

College Teacher Conference Gig

Last Friday evening I did another caricature gig through Live-Wires, the entertainer dispersal agency I have been working with. It was a pretty enjoyable event because I was doing caricature sketches of teachers. I like teachers--I was always wanting to be the teacher's pet in my classes in school. I'm sure they found me more of a trial than a pleasure to deal with since I wasn't always a particularly good student. But I found it really interesting to chat with them while I worked on the drawings

Most of my victims...uh, I mean "subjects" were ladies. I did get a few men, although two of them were in the drawings with ladies, so I'm not sure if they were teachers or spouses. I only took 6 or 7 photos and ultimately only 4 of them came out. The others were blurry. I need to work on my phone photography skills. I must joggle my hand as I'm taking pics sometimes and I was rushing too fast to check them or do a second shot. But anyway--I did manage to get a few decent pics and here they are. I'm getting faster and, I think, more accurate all the time. But the main thing I'm working on right now is speed!

Monday, January 25, 2016

She Kills MONSTERS!

I recently did a poster illustration for a play called "She Kills Monsters" for a local theater group called TART (Tacoma Actors Repertory Theater)! I only did the ink drawing, because anything else would have put it out of their budget. They seem to have someone on staff to set up the layout and text for the posters and presumably that person also did the color work. I'm posting them both together here.

It was great to work with a theater group again. The last theatrical poster I did was for The Fantastiks, a production that not only was I in, but was 20 years ago! That was the last time I performed on stage, because although I'd been heavily involved in theater during high school (for lack of any kind of visual arts program!), I realized that the theater was just not my calling. But I still get the bug to be involved in theater from time to time. Maybe I'll audition for a character part in a local stage production again one day. In the meantime, it's great to at least brush the diaphanous edge of that world again, even if only as an illustrator.

Anyway, since the play is based on a Dungeons & Dragons type scenario, the director (Jen Tidwell) especially liked the fact that I had done Magic: The Gathering cards. Once again, WofC lends me some fantasy art street cred!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Fall of the Goblin King

Yesterday I did a new celebrity caricature for our most recent major loss to the entertainment industry: David Bowie. I'm especially bothered that he was only 69 years old. That's only 18 years older than I am. And he was in much better shape than me--although his early years may have taken their toll. He was a wild one!

I was only a marginal fan of his music, although there were songs of his that I really loved. I was more a fan of him as not just an artist, but a work of art himself! He was a chameleon and a magician with his own image, making damn good art, with David Bowie as the subject and the medium.

Anyway, here is the caricature I did of him as one of my favorite characters he presented to us, although this one was a movie persona and not entirely his own creation--Jareth, the Goblin King! I may color this and add a background. Or I may have to make a cool full length version! It is an amazing movie and he was excellent as the twisted King of the denizens of the Labyrinth! He worked surprisingly well with puppets.

Anyway, thanks for the memories and the music, Mr. Stardust!


Tuesday, January 5, 2016

First Night -- Last Caricature Gig of 2015!

On Thursday, December 31, 2015, I participated once again (along with several of my fellow C.L.A.W. members) in doing caricatures for Tacoma's First Night Celebration. It's an annual block party that takes place in downtown Tacoma on the last night of the year. There are live bands, street vendors, food trucks and even a circus of some sort, all set up on a blocked off stretch of Broadway. As has been the case for the last several years, Brooks Dental Studio hosted the CLAW so that we would have a warm and well lit place to ply our cartoony trade!

Here are a few samples of the drawings I cranked out during the evening. My biggest challenge, a six person piece I did for one family! My fellow CLAW members were impressed at how much my speed had improved since last year's event. That is the main thing I have been working on as I have embarked on my caricaturing venture! All my practice and study seems to be paying off! The beneficiary of CLAW's participation is our Student Scholarship Fund!











Speaking of Brooks Dental Studio--although they are primarily a dentist's office, they have a gallery-like space and often hang the work of local artists. The CLAW has art hanging on their walls throughout January, including yours truly. Here's a photo of one of the displays with some of my art. You can see a couple of my Star Trek pieces, my phonebox drawing and the original Mark of Aeacus cover piece. So much thanks to Brooks Dental Studio for being such gracious supporters of The C.L.A.W.!!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

May The Holidays Be With You!

It's the time of year when I post my annual Brill/Stockham Household Christmas card! I've been doing these themed Holiday Greetings for a number of years now--in fact, this is the 7th one! I usually try to match the theme to an important event in the year...theatrically speaking. On the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, I did a Doctor Who themed card and I did the same the year the first Hobbit movie landed. I did Harry Potter and Big Bang Theory because those things were important to us at the respective times. This year was a no-brainer. I'd been wanting to do it for a while, but with the new movie about to burst onto screens across the world I HAD to do Star Wars!

I had the whole range of the Star Wars universe to choose from for our characters, but being the snobby purist that I am, I decided to keep it confined to the original film! After all, it's my favorite movie (and probably always will be for sentimental reasons) and it had a major impact on my life. The first movie will always be MY Star Wars. Anyway, best wishes to everyone for the 2015 holiday season!! Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Solstice and all the rest of the greetings for the winter holidays! ^0^