Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Steam Punk Death Maiden- grays

The first version of the Steampunk Death Maiden. I think it shows off the linework a bit better than a color version, but that is just me.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Dead Anyway: the Graphic novel web page is live!!!

It's alive! IT'S A-LIVE!!! THE
IS ALIVE!!! See artwork, get to know the creators, order, order, order! Thanks to Pete Mitchell and Bryan Ballinger for their drive, and native ability to heard creatives to a common goal. Gentlemen... I salute you.

cover artwork by Paul Conrad.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

last can of who hash

working on an idea for an ornament and or candle holder. The last can of Who Hash.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Steam Punk Evening Post

This was a piece that I may use as a christmas card for the 2012 season. We shall see how things go.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Strong Room Title Page

This is the title page for a collaborative project that I have been working on. It goes live tomorrow... Oct. 31st, HALLOWEEN!  More to come tomorrow, but until then, I tease you with this.

Friday, October 19, 2012

The New Pink Slip

First of all... NO,  this has nothing to do with real life. Nobody got canned. A group of us were sitting at lunch and the concept came about. It was such a grand visual that I just had to work up a cartoon for it... Thanks Tom for the inspiration.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Halloween Costumes

As the season of Trick or Treat comes nearer... some of us find that the holiday may be better suited for the "younger crowd". Enjoy your Halloween however you decide to celebrate it.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

I heard he had a hook on his foot.

As fall starts to arrive, and campfires become more common place, I am reminded by the movie Meatballs, where (a very young) Bill Murrey tells a haunting tale about a man with a hook on his hand prowling the woods... a rather naive listener "Spaz" responds to the telling with... " I heard that story before, but I heard that they guy had a hook on his foot."  His friend then responds, "How could the guy have a hook on his foot?!?"  In my head since that first viewing has been this poor fellow, with a hook on his foot.

Look at you go, Lil' buddy!

Monday, September 03, 2012

Comic Panels...

some panels from a project i am working on... a short story for a comic anthology.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

a couple of sketches from Crypticon KC

 attended the first KC Crypticon... a horror convention. Very small and intimate, but folks were able to converse with a few hollywood horror actors... and one or two pro make-up people.  Have to say that sometimes the attendees were more interesting than the paid guests. I hope it grows, it was way too pricy for what was delivered, but it was the first year... and I got spoiled by Spectrum Art Live earlier in the year.  Perhaps just a different set of tastes.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Black Aggie- Scratchboard complete

The black and white is complete for Black Aggie. Color will be applied asap. I like this one.  The Story of Black Aggie; guardian of the graveyard, Black Aggie is the embodiment of the lost daughter of a sculpter who, in his sorrow created a bronze monument for her memory. Over time, the statue became associated with the angel of grief. It also became rumored to be the protector of the cemetery, keeping it tidy and also protecting it from vandals. It is said that anyone who goes into the cemetery at night had best be on their best behavior lest they suffer the rathe of Black Aggie.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

London Olympic Opening Ceremonies

Summer Olympics Opening Ceremonies starts this Friday, London Town.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Black Aggie session 2 full image

This is where we are as of this posting. Some progress is starting to show, but still quite a bit to farther to go.

Black Aggie Stage 2 close up

new session, close up of what I have done so far. The post after this will be of the entire image to this point. As far as how I work, I usually block in bits that I know will be shadow or darker areas to be carved out, then tool them with either a rake tool or a single spade shaped tool following the motion of the cloth or how a leaf would grow from it's stem. Then I apply a highlight with a spade tool or apply shadow with an ink pen. Hope this helps. -db

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Black Aggie stage 1

End of session 1, blocking in and just a touch of ink work.
Starting back on the Bogeyman folio of work. This is the drawing, actually on the board for the next in line... Black Aggie.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

IMC 2012 complete

Tarzan is done. I think I am happy with it. I know I have learned a lot and am excited to apply these learnings to my next works.

IMC 2012 final Black and white, ready for color

Back from Amherst for about a month now. Since then I have had Bronchitis, which built into pneumonia and I have broken two ribs. So I have been down for a bit. After the breaking of the ribs, I decided to get back on that scratchboard horse and rework my IMC piece with what I have learned. The result is what is above. I left plenty of cropping space, or not if they choose to, and now I shall start the coloring of this beast. Hope all is well, I am ok, just tender around the middle.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

IMC 2012 Sunday/Monday

Sunday June 10th : gathering wits

Maybe I am growing, learning, exploring my path and starting to stretch my abilities. Maybe I am running, hiding, doing what I can to cover the loss of Lee Ann hiding under the veil of a workshop. Today would have been our twelfth anniversary. I do miss her so.

There is a fellow who is sick as a dog here at IMC. He has the flu like you would not believe. Actually bedridden (now Thursday) and hasn’t eaten much. Poor guy. To travel all this way and invest so much just to have your body be attacked like that, that is very tough to deal with. The entire IMC group, instructors, Guest lecturers, and attendees all signed a copy of James Gurney’s book; Color and Light. One of the assistants I guess delivered it to him. I added a deck of steam punk cards. I just feel for the fellow.

Sunday was a day of lecture instruction on shooting good reference and thinking about lighting conditions. Also there was a good lecture on visual story telling. What elements make or break a good visual story? Tor Books Illustrator Dan DosSantos and Concept Artist Iain McCaig presented. Sunday was also a day of getting down to addressing what was salvageable from the original sketch post critique. I chased my tale most of the day drawing up alternate solutions that might work but did not feed my drive. Donato Giancola sat down with me and we chatted for a while and he helped to clear a way some of the noise surrounding the critique. He had me focus on what was said in a way that I could now absorb it rather than it run off like water. I decided to go for a walk and clear my thoughts. It was a perfect afternoon for doing so. The walk helped to sort some of the cluttered thoughts. I went back and faced my drawing board and produced 4 more solutions. One of which I believe may be my key to a fine solution.

Monday June 11th : Like a bolt from the blue
After reworking ideas and thoughts my mind went back to “Don’t make it hard, just make the picture like you know how”. So I did a quick doodle, and liked it. It all the points that the faculty wanted to see included in a good solution, and it looked like my work.  I went straight to the final. No waiting for approval, no hand holding, just get it done. It felt good. I was excited about what I was about to explore.

Side note: It appears that the flu bug that attacked the one fellow on Sunday, (Chris) is starting to tickle my fancy. But, I’ve had worse and they are going to have to put me in a body bag. I go and get some allergy meds and a lot of bottled vitamin waters/ v’8s and waters.

Meanwhile back at the studios people are starting to finalize their drawings. And there are some un-freaking-believable people here. As one of the faculty stated… “We have sprinkled some ringers throughout the studios just to keep the stress levels high”. He joked about the stress levels, but not about the skill levels. There are at least 2 dozen top-notch pros working, mixed in with the rest of the next generation, and me.

I start to fly on inking in my drawing. I have tunes, pens, scratchboard, and time. Things flow well. Results start to show. I have a chat with illustrator/ instructor/ Greg Manchess. We discuss my work and where I am at on my path. It is a good talk. Through our dialogue, he helped to open a door that I had closed to myself long ago. It is recognizing that a door called risk exists. Also that opening it and walking in is ok, it is the only way to get better, to be honest with myself and push forward. But the enlightenment doesn’t come from his talk, (entirely) but from the realization that what he wants from me in this piece are all things that I had considered but in a fraction of a second dismissed as too hard or too challenging. They are supposed to be challenging. That is why we do them.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

IMC 2012: Saturday June 9th

IMC 2012: Saturday June 9th- Day One: Now you get to learn what you don’t know but should.

From the ground, a diving board doesn’t look as high as it does from the air. Well, here in Amherst, I am climbing the ladder to the diving board and getting ready to jump into Lord knows what. I know, don’t make up stories. These are just people, just like everybody else… you know, like Olympians are people. Well, studios have opened and we can go and pick out a space. I am going to do what I do best, go out there and mark my territory. I already drank 4 glasses of water this morning so I squish when I walk. Look out IMC, I am loaded.

Ego!! You bastard, come back here and face me!!!

Didn’t they tell you not to fall in love with your sketch??? And what did you go out and do???
Hello, I am Doug, and I fell in love with my sketch….
All:  “Hello Doug”.

Why do I let my ego drive? It never goes where I want it to go. It never takes me where I should be, and it always leaves me in a mangled heap in the middle of the floor somewhere. Yep, I like an idiot, I gave ego the keys… let it sign me up for first critique of the day, with everyone and their mother’s watching my ego let me tack my precious drawing up on the wall.
“Well, looky there, ain’t that just purty up there like that?”
From off in the distance I could swear I heard an English horn being blown as if a hunting party in full gallop complete with bloodhounds were on the scent for their quarry.  Eh, It was probably some dumb fool who fell in love with their sketch after being told… Hey… I fell in… do you hear bloodhounds???

After making sure I had my name emblazoned in 96pt type, I had four of the most competent artistic minds today dissecting/no discussing my drawing. Now there are two stories that occur here. The truth, and what ego snuck in and translated into my ear then high tailed it out of the room.

My ego left me crushed… they didn’t shower me with praise like ego said they would. They gave me things to work on to make it better. They didn’t sing of my name in glory like ego said they would. Instead, they just made suggestions and moved on to the next person. They can’t do that… I paid good money to be showered in false praise. Isn’t that what higher learning is about? It is at a lot of art colleges. So after our group finished with the critique, we took down our sketches, and I took down my shattered dream of excellence and everybody went to lunch. I didn’t even want to go to lunch. I couldn’t show my face there. I’d be forever known as ‘oh that guy, wow, you should have seen what he chose to hang up as a solution.’ But nothing was said about it, ever. I even got invited to sit with some people at lunch. The only person who noticed my critique was me. Could I tell you how anybody else’s critique went? No I cannot.

A very wise man advised me of two things that I occasionally forget, from time to time. But I always come back around and remember them when times get a little rough and it pulls me out of a lot of bad stuff.
·      Upon first impressions, believe positive intent. Most people are out to do Good in the world. Some days we may be better at it than others. I know that is true and a half for me. Nobody is out to get anybody generally. The vast majority is way too busy fixing their own screw ups. They don’t have the time to be bothered with screwing up anybody else’s lives.
·      Do I want to be happy? Or Right? This second one I really had to and still have to practice on from time to time. Sometimes people just want to do things their way and not mine. The nerve of it all. Who do they think they are… Me? Giving up the thought that I am in control and lending help when asked or needed makes a life much less stressful. Much less stressful indeed.

So, after all that… I went back in there and reworked my drawing, and reworked it, and reworked it, until it was so awful that I basically tired myself out. Then we had another chat with one of the faculty, Mr. Donato Giancola, a wonderful painter. We discussed the challenges set for my by the faculty in the critique and for some reason he harkened back to something my Father used to have help me with:  Listening vs. hearing.  I was hearing what the faculty was saying, but the meaning was getting scrambled somehow. When Mr. Giancola and I sat down together and re-evaluated the sketch, All I did was repeat back what was told to me, then he agreed. Probably due to the change in environment, I was able to absorb the message and easily  make the necessary adjustments. Is it perfect… no. Is it better… MOST DEFINITLY. Have I learned things… Most def

Friday, June 08, 2012

IMC 2012: whoever let me in here should be seriously punished

IMC 2012:

Wednesday June 6,
Countdown to Zero:
This is it, the last day. I have waited for this opportunity for over 2 years now. My sketch is ready; my supplies are packed into a giant suitcase. I brought all my markers, all my prismacolor pencils, all my scratchboard stuff, 2 16X20 boards, and a full set of watercolors and brushes. SOMETHING will work. My hope is to either do a scratchboard or work the marker technique from way back. Hopefully one of the two will be allowed. If I work scratchboard, then I will have to scan the beast to work some color technique digitally. No big whoo, just have to piece the scans together.

Daisy is pissed. She always looks so hurt when I leave. The vet takes really good care of her with 2 walks a day and some playtime so all should be good there. All will be good. And this time she gets a bath.

So, 2 big suitcases, a computer bag and a backpack and I are on my way to the land of the all nighter. And all I have to do tonight is sleep… yeah, like that’s going to come easily. Oh well, if not, then I will sleep on the plane. Someone once said, there is always some weird or annoying person on every flight… and if you don’t see him or her… then it could be you. I will make it my mission to ensure that it is not I.

Thursday June 7th:  Honest, I am me.

Michael Palin once said that it is the unique situations that make for the best travel experiences.  Well, this trip may be quite the story or it may end before it gets started. I have mistakenly allowed my drivers license to expire by 6 days. How did I find this out? Why I got stopped during baggage check and was politely informed. When they asked do I have another form of ID like a passport I responded… a passport? No I didn’t think I would need a passport to travel to Massachusetts. (Knowing my luck, if I did bring it, it would be expired as well.) This will prove to be interesting since I rented a car upon reaching Massachusetts. It is an hour drive from the airport to the college and I was planning on heading to the Norman Rockwell Museum on the 16th. And this doesn’t even touch the remote possibility that I may be stuck in Massachusetts unable to get back home if National Security decides I am a security risk and denies me access back home.

So, if I am able to get into the airport, I will next have to deal with the rental car company, or find another mode of transportation to get my big bottom to Amherst. I was so concerned about forgetting art materials and getting Daisy dropped off at the vet that I never considered peripheral challenges like State Government licensing. But on the good side, I have no concealed liquids and all my items are in quart sized Baggies. 

Well, after a couple of extra pat downs, and some finger waving from ATF, I got in and am ready to fly to Hadley International. One challenge down, it appears to pay off to flounder around helplessly. Performing a 2 year old’s lip quiver just before bursting into tears appeared to help as well. But then this is KC. The east coast may be far harsher. At least I can get closer to the workshop… from there I can take a bus if needed. Thank goodness I left a day early.

Well, renting a car without proper up to date identification for some reason is “again” the law! Who’d a thunk it? So, after sitting for a few moments in the rental car rejection chairs, I shuttled my bottom back to the airport and grabbed a taxi shuttle from the Airport to Amherst. I made it to the B&B. It is really nice, very quiet. I walked into town for supper, about a mile one way, but such a lovely evening, it was a good walk. So it looks as though the Saturday trip to Stockbridge is kaput. I still need a couple of supplies for which I may need to taxi out. Just keep reminding myself that I am here. Everything else fades for the next week and a couple of days. Then reality comes swinging with an aluminum bat with nails poking out of the end.

Friday: June 8th -On Your Mark… Wait for it!!!

So, No wheels, but I got taxied to the B&B. quite nice. Had probably the best night’s sleep I have had in months. It was cool, quiet, I had the windows opened, snuggled down and slept till 8:30 eastern time. I had a wonderful breakfast of mixed fruit and nuts with yogurt, and some scrambled eggs and a wheat English muffin and coffee. Wow. What a grand start to the day. Managed to lug the monster suitcases down the stairs again and called a cab to take me to the dorms at Amherst. After an hour wait, the cabbie drove me the two miles and dropped me off. But I knew that if I walked it, it would pour, (more about that omen later). I got registered; I am the first to be critiqued, and the first for portfolio review. So at least we all know where the bottom bar will be set. I walked over to the CVS and bought some alcohol and a spritzer bottle for an illustration technique, (rubbing alcohol, not drinking sheesh!) and got a light bite of lunch.  After that, I decided to make the long walk to the UMASS bookstore and get the last of my needed supplies. A 2 mile walk, no problem. It is nice outside. A slight breeze, mid seventies, what could go wrong? Halfway there, severe rain/ Thunder/ and hail decided to anoint me with it’s special greeting. I made it into the bookstore and got all my supplies minus one, a fan for noise reduction in the dorm at night. Needless to say I took the bus back. It never rained the entire trip back, and the bus fairs are free right now. Good to know.

So, I have my stuff, Tomorrow I get my crit and start reworking. Then we shall see what happens next. 

Monday, June 04, 2012

reworked a grayscale for Friday. I think it is a bit better. We shall see what the experts believe to be correct.

Sunday, June 03, 2012

IMC: preliminary drawing
This is what I have proposed for my illustration for Tarzan of the Apes: The fight with Kerchak, the group leader who killed Tarzan's parents and Tarzan's ape mother's first child. We shall see what people say. It will be very interesting to watch the evolution of this piece from here on. What I know and feel safe producing, then the evolution of direction. Here we go.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

IMC 2012 post1: thumbnails for Tarzan of the Apes

And so the adventure begins. Illustration Master Class- 2012 is two weeks away. I have been working on thumbnails, concepts, and thoughts on what I would want to tell as an image from Tarzan of the Apes. (which celebrates it's 100th anniversary this year.) I keep coming back to the fight between Kerchak and the young adult Tarzan. This is what I will be illustrating. A story of strength, of survival, a struggle for power, and for meeting one's destiny. I hope to finish the drawing this week. We shall see.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012


It has been a long long time since I attempted a scribble. It was fun. No pressure, no expectations, just explore.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Sunday, March 18, 2012

severe weather; Kansas style

There are some diehard storm chasers out here.  They do good work for meteorology, glad somebody wants to have that kind of a thrill.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Red Door 031712

First week back at Red Door in a couple of weeks. I was a bit rusty, but didn't do too bad. It was a good night of friendship and peace.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

red door 022512

red door last session of february... I really had trouble this evening. Sometimes i win, sometimes I just scrape out the bad stuff.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Red Door 012812

Red Door Drawing group 012812

Friday, January 27, 2012


during the Holiday year end break, I played around with drawing while listening and watching a DVD by legend Anthony Ryder. No way in comparison, I ain't even in the same block... but it was fun to listen to Mr. Ryder speak while I was drawing. Inspirational.