Sketchbook Update 1-21-15

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“Wassuuuup!…”

Today’s warmup sketch. Not sure it was 100% successful but it was based on a prompt from the Pose Drawing Sparkbook, “Smarmy”.

 

Sketchbook Update 1-19-15

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I’m trying to be more consistent about making time for a daily practice sketch or warmup drawing in between my client work. This is what I doodled up yesterday.

 

No Substitute

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This is something I need to remind myself of regularly. I figured I’m probably not the only one so I created this meme to spread around. Feel free to share. You can download or link to the original HD image here.

 

Sketchbook Update: Overstuffed Suitcase

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With the start of the New Year I’ve been trying to do a practice warm-up sketch every day. So far so good. This is the first one that turned out decent enough I thought it was worth a post. It’s based on a prompt from the Pose Drawing Sparkbook that reads “Trying to close an overstuffed suitcase.” I started noodling around with the idea of a suitcase full of money and this is what I eventually came up with.

 

2014 Highlights and Accomplishments

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2014 was another full and exciting year for my illustration studio. I’m deeply grateful to have such a fun job where I get to work on so many exciting projects with so many amazing people. Here’s a few highlights from our most recent trip around the sun:

Illustration

  • I worked on several really fun projects I can’t say too much about yet, including some product illustrations for some upcoming Hasbro toys and some local ads for a well-known household brand. Hoping I can say a little more soon.
  • I created a couple of spot illustrations for Highlights magazine. You can view them here and here.
  • I created some mobile messaging stickers for an upcoming project from a company called Tourean.
  • I illustrated a New York-themed coloring page for some Crayola packaging.
  • I was able to reveal some rough FPO sketches I did for a Best Buy catalog through the Olson agency.
  • I also created some concept sketches for CPC Intersect to use in a pitch to Coca-Cola, with the help of a couple of other local illustrators. (Unfortunately I can’t show those yet either.)
  • I was hired by Dugan Design to illustrate a cover for an upcoming humor book.
  • Just for fun I sketched up my first ever web comic, the Twinkie Weight Loss Plan. It was probably the most liked and shared thing I did all year.

 

Toy Design

  • I continued to stay very busy doing toy design and concept art for multiple Hasbro projects (which unfortunately I’m not allowed to show).
  • I was able to reveal some concept work I did in 2013 for an Incredible Hulk toy for DecoPac, Inc.

 

Character Design

  • I continued designing animated characters for new VeggieTales DVD’s including Veggies In Space and Celery Night Fever.
  • I designed some characters for a new upcoming project from VeggieTales creator Phil Vischer. I can’t yet reveal the final designs but I was able to share some early concepts.
  • designed a mascot named Sir Cumference for an upcoming project about weight loss.
  • I created some more illustrations using a mascot I designed for Goldfish Swim Schools. I’m hoping I can reveal those soon.
  • I also designed several characters for an educational website through an animation studio in California, but unfortunately I don’t yet have permission to share that work either. (I guess confidentiality was a theme this year.)

 

Misc

  • We moved! I’m now working out of a bigger, roomier studio in our new home in Burnsville, MN. We are still in the Minneapolis area but now with more elbow room. My new address is on my contact page.
  • I was nominated for a Reuben Award from the National Cartoonists Society in the category of Advertising Illustration. Ultimately I finished as a runner up but it was still a tremendous honor to be nominated!
  • Speaking of the National Cartoonists Society, they must be getting hard up for content because I was also featured on the cover of their monthly newsletter.
  • I was interviewed twice. First by animation studio owner and author Todd Hampson about balancing work, business, and life as an artist. I was also interviewed on the Creative Independence Podcast where I discussed my what I learned from my Kickstarter campaign for the Pose Drawing Sparkbook.
  • Speaking of the Sparkbook, after only nine months I completely sold out of physical copies of the book! Fortunately the digital version is still available along with my new-ish webinar “Bringing Your Drawings To Life”.
  • Since I’m making shameless plugs, this year I also released a 2-hour webinar called “Freelancing Tips and Tricks” (available exclusively on TaughtByAPro.com) and “Sketchercise!”, a new PDF sketchbook available on Gumroad or in my studio store.
  • I once again exhibited at FallCon and SpringCon, Minnesota’s semi-annual comic book conventions.
  • I was a featured panelist in The Pricing Game, a webinar for freelancers sponsored by the Graphic Artists Guild.
  • I posted a free download of sketchbook ideas for Inktober.
  • I started a YouTube channel. I’m still not sure what exactly to do with it but you might find a few things of interest to watch.
  • Like everyone else I took part in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, but with an artistic twist.
  • I even took a few breaks to dabble in my sketchbook.

 

Whew! I’m exhausted just thinking about it all. This was one of the busiest years I can ever remember for my studio, but also one of the most enjoyable. I feel very blessed. Thanks to all of you who have supported me and shown interest in my work over the years. Here’s hoping 2015 is the best year yet!