Sketches of Fat Guys for Fat People Art Week

On February 9, 2011 · Comments Off on Sketches of Fat Guys for Fat People Art Week

It’s Fat People Art Week! A few contributions….

I’m trying to learn how to paint in Photoshop, and I was playing with some more painterly approaches in the drawing below (although I still didn’t give up the crutch of line art!). Still a long way to go…

And here’s the exact same drawing, except I took the colors and just smudged the heck out of them:

Another fat guy drawing, this one finished in my more typical style:

And a third, this time playing around with cross-hatching:

The Portland Opera’s Turandot

On February 3, 2011 · 2 Comments

The Portland Opera likes to bring in local cartoonists to see their dress rehearsals; in return, the cartoonists draw the opera they’ve seen. I participated back in November, drawing Hansel and Gretel. And this Monday, I saw Turandot. Here are my Turandot drawings (click on the drawings to see them bigger):

Here, we see our hero, whose name is something of a mystery. He spent a lot of the opera hugging himself in his big leather trenchcoat.

Here, the hero struggles to ring a gong, while three colorfully-dressed city bureaucrats try to talk him out of it.

Thanks to Portland Opera for the chance to do this (and for the free food!).

Mike Russell has a complete summary of Turandot’s plot in cartoon form! (My favorite line: “Don’t get up or anything!”). And Matt Grigsby has several drawings from the production. This is just the start of the Turandot drawings — there were a bunch of us there. If you’re interested in seeing more, watch the #pdxoperacomics tag on twitter.

UPDATE: And here’s a third drawing:

Read “Modest Medusa”

On January 30, 2011 · Comments Off on Read “Modest Medusa”

Jake Richmond, the cartoonist who (among a zillion other things) colors “Hereville,” has started a new webcomic, called “Modest Medusa,” which is genuinely funny, charming and nice to look at. The first strip is here, but I’ll post a sample:

Go check it out!

A Bunch Of Fifty Dollar Sketches

On January 7, 2011 · Comments Off on A Bunch Of Fifty Dollar Sketches

I have an ongoing offer to do a $50 dollar sketch for people who buy a copy of Hereville from me. It’s fun for me to do, and I think people enjoy having a one-of-a-kind drawing done just for them.

With only a couple of exceptions, these were drawn entirely on computer, and then printed out with a high-quality art printer. (This is the same way I draw Hereville; I hardly ever draw directly on paper nowadays!). Some of these were requests (“draw Mirka in Tom Baker Doctor Who’s scarf,” for example, or “draw Mirka playing hockey”), others were just me drawing whatever I felt like (which turned out at least twice to be Mirka in a tree).

Click on any of the drawings to see them bigger.

21 Drawings of a Young Zero Mostel

On December 16, 2010 · Comments Off on 21 Drawings of a Young Zero Mostel

My favorite Cerebus covers (gallery)

On November 11, 2010 · 4 Comments

For my money, few comic books has been as thrilling and interesting as Dave Sim’s Cerebus — and no other comic has been as infuriating and disappointing in the end. Here are some of my favorite covers, drawn by Sim and Gerhard. (Sim does the figures and lettering, Gerhard does backgrounds, objects and colors).

Issue 87. The cover, depicting two characters falling off a cliff during a blizzard, is lovely in its own right. I liked it even better once I realized that it was a parody of Frank Miller’s Dark Knight cover — but Sim and Gerhard’s version looks better.

Issue 123. I love this cover portrait of a character who seemed simple, but turned out to have many sides, some of them quite ugly.

Issue 140, one of many nice Cerebus covers in this period featuring small figures in front of amazing Gerhard drawings of architecture. This cover stands out to me because of the subtle but perfect body language; Sebastian sick and exhausted and facing a long climb still to go, and Robbie so worried for his friend and eager to help.

Issue 206. I wanted to include a cover from “Guys,” because I really liked the way that the covers were just additional pages in the comic, and fit into the paperbook book collection seamlessly — but are still lovely cover designs in and of themselves. Also, these covers feature Sim drawing in his Drucker-influenced caricature style, my favorite of Sim’s drawing styles.

Issue 96, probably my favorite of any cover to an individual Cerebus issue. This was the second of a series of five covers featuring tight close-ups of Cerebus, all drawn in a rough cross-hatched style. It’s a powerful image, and a great use of cropping to create drama.

Then there are my two favorite phone book covers:

High Society. A stunning pen-and-ink drawing of a small Cerebus climbing the steps to an enormous hotel. Click on the image to see it larger, or see a huge, high-quality scan on Cerebusfangirl’s Flickr page.

Click on it to see it bigger! As I said, I love Dave Sim in his Mort Drucker influenced mode, and the huge crowd scene on this cover certainly gives me a lot of that. A zillion elements — the insane crowd, the overwhelming mountain and architecture, and the little tiny Cerebus making huge gestures on top of the building — are held together by Sim’s solid design sense, and form a perfect illustration for the story inside.

This is a wrap-around cover, by the way. I couldn’t find a really great scan of the whole wrap-around, but here’s the best I did find (click on it to see it larger).

I don’t think this is a cover, but while looking for Cerebus covers, I came across this impressive painting by Sim and Gerhard of Cerebus having a nightmare. And I have no idea where the painting came from! So if you know, please leave a comment.

Another drawing video!

On November 11, 2010 · Comments Off on Another drawing video!

Here’s another video of me drawing Mirka, this time at 20x actual speed.

Portland Opera’s “Hansel and Gretel”

On November 4, 2010 · 2 Comments

This Monday, me and 19 other Portland cartoonists attended a dress rehearsal of the Portland Opera’s production of “Hansel and Gretel.” We were fed and wined, given a backstage tour, and then allowed to sketch and doodle during a full dress rehearsal. I had a great time.

Anyway, here’s the drawing I made, based on my sketches that night:

I’m hoping I’ll have time to do another drawing, this time of the witch, but I’m not sure if I will.

A few other cartoonists have also posted drawings and sketches: Jenn Manley Lee, Indigo Kelleigh, Jonathan Case, Emi Lenox, and (even though he wasn’t there) Mike Russell. I’m sure more sketches will be appearing; on twitter, watch the #pdxoperacomics hashtag.

Jewish Women in Pop Culture #3: Rhoda Morgenstern

On November 3, 2010 · 6 Comments

I love Rhoda. Although I wonder how many Hereville readers will know who she is without having to click on the link?

Video of me drawing Mirka

On November 2, 2010 · Comments Off on Video of me drawing Mirka

Here’s a video I made of me drawing Mirka. I’m not very happy with how the drawing came out, to tell the truth, but the video might still be fun to watch. The video is speeded up to ten times the actual speed I drew at.

And part two:

School Visits
I love doing author visits, either in person or over the internet via Skype! Click here for information about having me speak at your school.