So where have I been?

My last post was about 9 months ago – shameful really. But I have a good excuse, an NDA! In August I started talking to BOOM! Studios and David Petersen about working on a dream project: The Mouse Guard Alphabet book. Every letter has some meaning in the Mouse Guard world, and each word is accompanied by a poem by David Petersen and two illustrations by myself.

The job was unexpected and quite frankly, ideal. I’m a big fan of Mouse Guard – it was my first graphic novel and the art and story has continued to endear it to me for years. It was a lot of fun getting to research the Mouse Guard universe and come up with my own interpretations of it. David let me have a great deal of freedom with my style and character designs (non-canon characters), and I produced some of my all-time favourite paintings.

mouseguard_alphabet_book_cover

So I finished the paintings in January and now I’m free to talk about it. I can’t wait until I can share more of the art from the book. It comes out in September 2017.

It started me on a path to pursuing traditional media. For years I have been using watercolour to almost-finish my paintings, scanning them, and using Photoshop to colour correct, to paint details, to fix proportions. This is a very fast approach, but it leaves my original watercolour paintings looking tragic, not something I can sell. In doing the Mouse Guard paintings, I forced myself to finish the illustrations traditionally in a sense. Some are different from the print versions, but the original paintings still look good.

mouseguard_alphabet_a

It was a gruelling effort. Due to the time constraints of the project, I was able to spend a maximum of 2 days on every painting, meaning that I was working faster and more polished than I ever had been before. In the end, I like the look of traditional more, and I love having originals that I can now sell or hang on my wall.

So when I participated in the Month of Love in February, I set out to create several fully-traditional paintings. Admittedly, I don’t enjoy making romantic art, so my paintings are interesting interpretations of the themes.

 

innocent_web

Shelter

This is my submission for the 2017 Month of Love topic “Innocent”.

nourished_web

Titan – 5×7″, watercolour, gouache and gold ink.

This is my submission for the Month of Love topic “Metamorphasis”.

I wanted to transform the humble cow into a goliath. Gary now roams the countryside, feared and respected.

covetous_web

Covetous – 8×10″, watercolour and gouache

This is my submission for the Month of Love topic “Light”.

Inspired by Tolkien’s Smaug, a queen who covets wealth and power. She destroys everyone around her in her pursuit of riches. She sits surrounded by great castle halls, filled with gold, but she sits alone.

Currently I don’t have any projects going on – always a scary time. I’m going to do an interior scene for my children’s book portfolio and see where that leaves me. I promise I’ll post more often now.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s