Senin, 26 November 2012

Doodle Novel - Vol. 1

'Art for Doodle Novel Vol. 1 - You write the story for this art.'

The fun thing about most doodles, are they allow the one viewing them the opportunity to read into it their own meaning. Most of the doodles I draw have no premeditated idea, they just kind of pour out of my subconscious onto the page and I try not to get in the way. I then take it into Photoshop and continue the artistic experimentation. That is how the above art was created.

Usually that is how the content for a post will begin and end. But I wanted to try something new and that is where you the reader of this blog can play a part. I want to turn these meaningless doodles into what I call a "Doodle Novel".

How it works
- Using "Comments" write a story for the doodle. Anything goes, have fun.
- Weave your yarn as long or as short as you like.
- Include your name

So release your inner scribe and let others enjoy your fictional prose as you author a "Doodle Novel" for my artwork.

I look forward to reading your ideas.

Unwrapping a Logotype - TV Spot

'Lifetime Television Seasonal Logotype'

Lifetime Television just sent me the TV spot using my logotype design. They changed the colors and added some modeling to the letterforms but overall I think it came out pretty cool. The above image shows the art I delivered.

'Lifetime Television TV Spot'

The screen capture shown above comes from the actual TV spot being aired the whole month of December on Lifetime. Watch the entire TV spot here.

Minggu, 25 November 2012

Isometric Diagram Illustration

'Isometric Diagram Illustration for Kazeon.'

How do you relay technically complex IT processes and methodologies in a simple visual manner so a layman or garden variety corporate suit can quickly and easily get a grasp on the big picture and understand a products benefit to their bottom line? That was the challenge I faced on this project.

'Diagrams integrated into Kazeon web site.'

Kazeon equips large companies to manage and isolate individual data points within their own networks that may contain millions of documents, files and emails. They needed to show these services visually on their web site at, and within presentations to potential clients and investors alike.

In total I created four diagram illustrations for Kazeon along with some GUI icons you can see on their web site. Working in this isometric style is fun and is kind of like vector SIMS in a way. To view a larger version of the illustration above click here.

Sabtu, 24 November 2012

Trashing Abe

'Doodle Movie - Trashing Abe'

Another doodle movie using one of my recent drawings of Abraham Lincoln, some found textures from a parking garage in Nashville, a church door in NYC and a local parking lot. Also included is several historical diagrams I found in a vintage high school science book which I've made into Photoshop brushes.

Mix them all together and you get this essential nonsense.

Kamis, 22 November 2012

Pet Monster

My daughter Savannah and her pet monster.

This past week I did a presentation at the Adobe MAX Conference called "Working SmARTer." The session focused on the creative process and how you could use smart objects in Ai and Ps.

To help illustrate the use of smart objects I created a project where I used a combination of photography and illustration. My daughter Savannah gave me the idea so I made her part of the project and she did a great job acting the part as you can see in the image above.

Close up of pet monster "Gooblymook."

As my daughter explains pet monsters live in your pockets, they enjoy wearing small hats, piercing their ears and because they dwell in the dark most times their vision tends to be poor and requires corrective lenses.

Every so often they come out and enjoy the fresh lint-free air.

Kanji for "Create."

Pet monsters are part of Asian lore and only speak fluent Japanese. This timid fellow is proclaiming "Create."

My daughter rules! Go Savannah!

Selasa, 20 November 2012

Viral Marketing High Jinks

'George sporting a nice fro.'

I've had a lot of fun with my dedication site "". I was even interviewed by Chicago public radio and interviewed as if I was Bob Ross which was a lot of fun and pretty hilarious too.

Well, 90% of the time I use my debit card to buy stuff and rarely have cash on hand. But when I do I like to doodle afro's on the presidents and write "" on the bill itself. It's a fun creative use of commerce and capitalism in pursuit of art.

'AJ goes urban funk.'

Who knows how far these bills will travel through circulation nationwide and maybe even over seas? I figure it's a simple and harmless viral marketing tactic that will give people a few laughs and that is why I decided to post about it here.

'Embedded code within US currency design.'

So I took these bills out of my wallet that I had drawn on and scanned them in to create the images you see in this post and when I opened them up in Adobe Photoshop a window instantly popped up and showed me this message. Yikes! Apparently our money has encoded counterfeit technology literally embedded into the designs that even when scanned is recognized by something Adobe has integrated into Photoshop CS3. It may have been there in previous versions but I don't know since I never scan in money?

I know there are companies that are developing this technology and I know a few artists who are beta testers and get monthly reports on who is using their images without permission online or in print. One company that is doing this in Canada has a great site you can view here.

Anyway I didn't try to print anything out of Photoshop, I was afraid if I did that some message would be sent to the secret service covertly and I'd have the FBI knocking on my studio door in a few hours and I don't think they'd find presidential fro's very funny. I have to admit the technology is pretty stinking impressive though.

Senin, 19 November 2012

Editorial Illustration

'Risk Assessment' for Gas & Oil Investor Magazine (Click for larger view)

In the late 90's and early...uh...0's? (I just realized I have no clue what to reference the first ten years of the twenty first century?) Anyway, I use to do a lot of editorial illustration but over the last six years my niche has changed and most of my illustration is within a design context and frankly I prefer that.

Even though I enjoy doing illustrative design I still do editorial projects when they come my way. I've been doing editorial illustration for one of my clients since 1999 and every few months they send me an article and have me read it then conceptualize an editorial illustration to go along with it. The articles aren't what I'd call page turners since they deal mostly with the minutia of Gas & Oil investing, so trying to pull out a clever concept I can visually capitalize on can be somewhat painful.

This illustration is the end result of my most recent editorial work.

PS: My wife isn't a creative type and I'll admit some of my work just pushes her comfort zone style wise. She likes much of it but would never want it to hang in her living room. I had shown her the above illustration mid-way through and all she said was "His nose is too long. Nobody has a nose that long." I just laughed and my oldest daughter who was in my studio at the time chimed in with "Mom it's not suppose to be real." I seconded my daughters comment with a proud nod of agreement and my wife exited my studio saying "Too big." LOL

Minggu, 18 November 2012


'Doodle Movie - htmhell'

In an age of flash animation and online video the venerable animated gif keeps marching along and that is why I enjoy creating what I call 'Doodle Movies'. I doodle some art, take images I've either found or photos I've taken and then go into Photoshop and use the gif timeline to create fun animated artwork.

If you're wondering why I created this keep reading.

'Actual scrambled page.'

This past summer I was introduced to Twitter. What is Twitter you ask? According to their own site it is defined as follows:

"Twitter is for staying in touch and keeping up with friends no matter where you are or what you’re doing."

I've done exactly that, documenting stray thoughts, funny insights, snarky quips and cool links with fellow creative peers and others who have added me to their follow list. It's fun taking a peek into others lives and each of us sharing our own. (See link in my contact information at right)

About a week ago one of my friends posted a link to a web site on Twitter. I clicked the link but when it loaded into my browser the page was scrambled as shown above. A few seconds passed and right before I moved my cursor to close the window a thought crossed my mind

"That is so ugly looking it's kind of cool."

I've trained myself to not ignore these types of thoughts, so I took a few screen shots of the scrambled page knowing I'd use it somehow to create some art. And thus a new doodle movie was born.

Sabtu, 17 November 2012

Brand Icons

'Chicken Club - Sticker design motif used on all food products.'

When a client hires me to illustrate a sausage gondola and a hot dog smoking a pipe it goes without saying that the project is going to be a fun one to work on. This was the case when I was asked to create a set of icons for use in a new re-branding of a popular restaurant chain in Canada called Kolachy Co.

Kolachy's offers a wide range of unique pastry sandwich flavors and thus needed an equally unique set of icons to distinguish each of them. Working closely with the art director I developed a fun whimsical concept for such flavors as "Terrazzo Sausage" (Sausage Gondola), "Spinach & Feta" (Popeye Arm), "Steak and Cheese" (Cow with Swiss Cheese Holes), "Ginger Beef" (Cow in Chopsticks) and "BBQ Beef" (Flaming Cow Head) and many more.

'A particle selection of the '38' icons I designed.'

Each of the icons will be used within the context of the sticker design motif shown above. These stickers will be applied to the actual food item within the restaurants to clarify the flavor or food type being offered. The colors used are part of Kolachy's new overall branding strategy developed by ReThink.

I enjoy working closely with a creative team like ReThink, bouncing around ideas and fine tuning concepts until you arrive at a well crafted solution.

Kamis, 15 November 2012

Continuous Line Illustration

'Linear styled illustration of a man.'

Sometimes in the course of working with agencies projects change or get axed mid-way through a creative process. Thus was the case with this project. I was hired to illustrate some linear line art for an advertising campaign. With this specific style all the heavy lifting creatively speaking is done upfront in the refining of the sketch. Working out how the one continuous line flows to create the given image. And once the sketch is done you essentially know what the final art will end up looking like so all that remains is just building the final vector version once the sketches are approved.

'Linear styled illustration of a women.'

Well, before I had a chance to build the art the client changed the direction of the project and thus the linear art was no longer needed. That's the way it goes at times but I liked the art so I went ahead and created it for myself.

Selasa, 13 November 2012

Unwrapping a Logotype

'Lifetime Television Seasonal Logotype'

I was approached by Lifetime Television to create the above seasonal logotype. They wanted fun and festive hand lettering for use in their branding for the holiday season the entire month of December. It'll also be used in their print publicity materials and online.

The TV spots will be animated and are suppose to start airing November 10th. I haven't been able to see the animation yet myself however.

'Secondary Seasonal Element Provided'

I also created the above secondary graphic to go with the logotype. All though I don't think Lifetime Television will end up using the holly berries I still provided the art incase they changed their mind.

I always enjoy doing hand lettering it's almost as fun as Christmas.

Kamis, 08 November 2012

Recently Spotted - Part 2

"Beat Street" and "Beat Street Inline" font.

The font "Beat Street" shown above I designed about 12 years ago. Like I said in my previous post about this type face, it's been a while since I designed a font. For the past four years however I have slowly been working on a new one called "Nincompoop" which I plan on finishing up and producing in 2009 sometime.

Over the years I've spotted my fonts being used in a variety of ways. You can view some of the "Beat Street" examples here in my previous post.

"Beat Street" spotted in the movie "Freaky Friday."

My youngest daughter was watching the movie "Freaky Friday" in my studio yesterday and I watched along as I worked and something in one of the scenes struck me as familiar. I hit rewind on my TiVo and sure enough there it was, my "Beat Street" font used on some poster in a scene of this movie.

"Beat Street" used in some type of motivational poster?

I never go hunting for this stuff I always stumble upon it and the context it's used in most often is craptacular at best. I can create a cool font but I can't control if and how a bad designer chooses to use it.

If any of you happen to spot this font being used please let me know I'd love to see it and document the usage with a new post.

BTW: You can test drive and purchase the "Beat Street" font here.

Senin, 05 November 2012

Embracing My Inner Geek

'The Ferengi . Click on image to view larger sample.'

I admit I love watching Star Trek. Over the years I've enjoyed the Ferengi characters the most. Since I just got TIVO I've been watching a lot of Star Trek lately and was reminded again of how much this specific character amused me and I've been meaning to illustrate one based on a sketch I did a few months ago.

Well I had a few extra hours last night so I created the art shown above. I integrated their official logo and an actual rule of acquisition. Of course if you're not familiar with the Star Trek universe then this art will mean very little to you and you'll just think I am a geek and yes you'd be correct in that assessment, and my wife would be of the exact same mindset as you too. :-)

But if you're a fellow geek and enjoy Star Trek as much as I do then you'll want to download the pdf I have created so you can print it out and enjoy the art yourself. Download Ferengi PDF.

PS: Of course I am violating multiple rules of acquisition by giving this art away for FREE in the PDF file but to appease the Grand Nagus I am also offering a handsome t-shirt which you can purchase for a minimal amount of Latinum.

Update! Well federation commerce police didn't think I should be selling my fan art on their site so even though all things Star Wars is permitted it looks like anything Star Trek is not? Nice Kardashian tactics.

NEW Ferengi Rules of Acquisition Widget On It's Way!

I've partnered with a coder out of Portland to create a MAC OSX widget. He had previously released a Ferengi Rules of Acquisition Widget but the graphics weren't so great so I offered to re-design his GUI and soon the new widget will be uploaded to Apples site for all to download and enjoy. Below is a sneak peek at the graphics.

'GUI Design for Widget Front.'

'GUI Design for Widget Back.'

'Dashboard Dock Icon.'

Kamis, 01 November 2012

Guaran Tee

Guaran Tee. Neutraface and Gill Sans versions.

Tonight I was thinking about what a client had asked me a while back.

"Do I get a guarantee if I hire you?"

I'm happy to announce that I'll be able to say "Sure, no problem."

Get Your Own "Guaran Tee"
- Neutraface Version
- Gill Sans Version