A diverse group of illustrators who need a place to post and critique work as well as share our knowledge

Monday, August 4, 2014


Second dragon I fleshed out from a sketch of mine. Lots of fun. :)


-Tyler Justice

Monday, July 21, 2014

Dragon Portraits

The past month or so I've gone easy on myself and have been doing small projects for fun and trying new techniques. Like this dragon sketch I did for the Inktober challenge. Why? Because dragons.

A little process:

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Destroyer of Worlds

Howdy, Thomas Kirkeberg again. Here's my very first painting after finishing school. It was a a bit harder than originially planned, because I struggled to find a suit design I liked. Also, lighting started to come from all over the place. I think I need to figure out more in the early stages, but rushing through a painting to meet a deadline is a habit that dies hard. Also, shooting reference is a bit trickier now that I’m alone and not surrounded by art students ready and able to help. However, these are challenges that shall be overcome.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Banner of the North

Hello all!
So yesterday I finished this painting called "Banner of the North", it has been about 2 months or so since I have posted anything. Last may I attended to Spectrum Live and there was where I got the inspiration to do a female warrior piece. I have also been wanting to do a piece related to nordic culture since I have been so into Norway and Scandinavian countries lately so I figured why not.
Anyway this is done with watercolors, acrylics, inks and digital. =)

Thanks y'all!!!
Luis Uzcategui

Saturday, May 17, 2014


So I finished another painting and thought I would write a bit about my process.

First of all I knew I wanted to do something twice as big as my last piece, and I also wanted to try a color palette I hadn't used much in the past. I decided on a cool color palette focusing mostly on purples since the painting was intended to hang in my living room and the purple would look nice with the yellowgreen walls :) I also knew I wanted to paint a gryphon since I never have before.

I started by researching eagles and lions and was happy to find lots of cool action poses for reference.

It was a fun challenge to find the right combination of poses that I thought would make the ideal attack pose for a gryphon. I also decided I wanted to have a rider on the gryphon so there would be some sort of teamwork between rider and mount to slay an unwelcome wyvern.

After many thumbnails I arrived at the composition above. First I did a quick color/value study, which I then used as reference when doing the final line drawing, which I then digitally painted on top of for my final study before the actual painting.

Here is the next month's worth of painting sessions (roughly each frame was one sitting) You'll notice a few things changed quite a bit from the color study and also during the painting. Things like the windows and the wyverns head I ended up repainting to make sure I really got them right. It was painful but I learned a lot by not being complacent.

And the finished piece.


17x24.5 on canvas

I'm really starting to like acrylic, I have a lot of experimentation to do with this new medium, and I'm definitely not as proficient with it as I would like to be. I would also like to try painting on masonite or illustration board. The canvas texture is nice but can be annoying at times, especially getting a good photo.

If anyone has any ideas for a new challenge for me to try I would love to hear it! Otherwise I will hopefully have a new painting for you in a month or two.

Monday, April 7, 2014

"Something That Never Comes"

In the distance I searched,
In a place where there was only emptiness.
A vast land filled with fog and broken dreams.
I sacrificed my search of hope to at least find sadness,
But found nothing.

I was embraced by the chasm of depression,
Happiness polluted by hollow words.
Footsteps that could no longer be lifted off of the ground and knees that have grown roots,

I was lost,
Nobody came to my aid,
Instead I was left to weep for an eternity as I searched for infinity,
I dipped my hands into love and only felt what it is to be broken,

I am lost.
I have chosen to forget emotion,
Give up attachments and plea for nothing.
I have taken refuge in isolation because it is the only love in which whom has not fully destroyed me.

Isolation is my only guarantee, and you,
You told me I could find you in the midst of these times,
But I have long forgotten life in my search through poignancy,
Looking for another answer besides that nothing will come.

Hope belongs to us all,
But it was stolen by manic disbelief, dismembered and left in areas where creatures now lurk. In places we once found beauty and are now too afraid to go.
Incapable of progression due to the comfort of isolation, we can’t be hurt if we have nothing left to give nor can we be hurt if we have nothing left to be taken.

I yearned that I could find an emotion that is somehow connected to forgiveness,
But as I search through these limitless planes,
I have forgotten what hope was.

Forgotten what my search entails and have embraced the only understanding that I am assured.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Brimstone and Hellfire

Hello all,
So I have finally finished the Second piece of my Lord of the Rings collection. This one here should have been done some time ago but life got in the way... oops. Anyway, here it is! Hope you like it and enjoy.

-Luis Uzcategui

Monday, March 17, 2014

Who Am I?! - A Post About Style

Hello, good people of Blogger / art lovers! You haven't heard from me on the blog before, so a quick introduction: I'm Marissa. I graduated from CCAD last May (hard to believe it's been nearly a year) and have been working on the Creative Services team at Victoria's Secret as their illustrator for about 8 months now. I also moonlight as a freelance graphic designer. Needless to say, I've kept quite busy and haven't had much time for personal art. Which is why I thought I'd make my blog debut more discussion-based.

Let's get the ball rolling with a few thoughts about style. Let's start with how you get it.

Step 1: Go through an identity crisis. If you're in school, at some point you will likely end up in the fetal position on your floor because you think you don't have "style." You don't know who you want to be as an artist, and you don't know what the hell you're going to do about it. But this identity crisis is a rite of passage for creatives. If you never go through this stage, you'll never evolve or grow as an artist. Cherish this mental breakdown, y'hear?!

Step 2: Before you figure out what your art is, figure out who you are. I had the identity crisis in my junior year. Up until then, I was completing assignments in a purely academic style. But somewhere along the line, it got harder to solve creative problems. Making art wasn't even fun anymore because I spent more time trying to figure out what style I wanted to work in than I spent executing the art. What helped me figure out what kind of art I should be making was visually mapping out a chart of myself--my likes and dislikes, and all the things from childhood that influenced me. It helped me realize that I love all things humorous, people & animals, and pop-culture. I also made a list of artists whose work I admired (Peter de Seve, Carter Goodrich, Bobby Chiu). I realized then that everything I loved could be summed up by one word: Character. After that, I decided to base my work off of characters and incorporate humor into everything I did. 

Here's my chart:

If you think you don't have style, think again. Your style has always been there. It's the way you make marks on the page with your pencil, pen, stick, whatever. It's how you lay down paint with your square brushes, your rounds, your filberts. It's your color choices. Subject matter. Where you make the light source in your compositions. I promise you that you already have it. Just do some digging.

Steal it 'til you feel it. If you still insist that you don't know what your style is, steal it. Now, I hope you didn't hear that as "go make shitty rip-offs" or "steal with malicious intent." I mean in your own private time, try doing some studies. Do you like Rockwell? Try painting a head study by him. Or anyone else you like. Chances are, by painting or drawing like someone else, you'll pick up on a new technique they did, and if you like it, you can incorporate it into your own work. And once again, please don't make shitty rip-offs. I speak for the whole art community when I say this: We're not dumb; we will know where it came from, and we'll secretly (or publicly) hate you for it. 

Switch brushes. Sometimes when you're stuck, all you need to do is switch brushes. If you've been using a round all your life, pick up a square. If you like a pencil, trade it in for an ink pen, maybe even with a brush tip. Try switching medias entirely. I used to draw only in pencil, and worked very tightly and accurately. I took a watercolor class in my junior year that forced me to work more freely and not worry about erasing mistakes. Ultimately, it helped me loosen up, develop a more painterly style, and leave behind my fear of laying down color.

Make terrible art. Get the crap out of the way. Make some really lousy artwork. You have to go through the process of making things terrible before you can expect to produce anything good.

Know the basics first. This is something I feel very strongly about. I'm a firm believer in knowing how to draw something objectively and accurately before you experiment with exaggeration and stylized shapes. Before you stylize something, you still need to know the rules: how light behaves, what colors go well with each other, etc. etc. A while back, I watched this amazing video of Picasso painting. Lots of people think he just couldn't draw realistically. What they don't realize is that he painted things realistically first, and then painted over them in his stylized manner. Like him or not, he really was a master and knew what he was doing. So be a sponge. Soak up all the information and learn how to be a good representative artist first. Then you can march to the beat of your own drum.

I'm going to stop here tonight because it's getting late at night here, and there's just so much more to cover! For a future post on Style, I'd like to address a few more questions, like:

  • What happens to my style when I start working for someone? Do I get to keep it? Do I have to give it up?
  • Is it okay if someone asks me to work in the style of another artist?
  • Is it better to have one style, or many styles? 

A final note for tonight's post: I was watching Zoolander tonight and realized that finding your style is kind of like Zoolander finally being able to turn left and reveal his "Magnum" look at the end of the movie, which is the best thing he's ever done. Some of you might actually have this amazing "Aha!" moment when you find your style. The clouds will part, etc., and you will scream, "THERE IT IS!!!" For others, it will evolve a bit more slowly. But in the end, it will all lead to your very best work. It will be beautiful! 

For your enjoyment, the glorious Zoolander clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gx9O6q0pDAU&t=0m40s 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Waiting After Death

Waiting After Death

I started this piece not quite a year ago and put it aside for a while because I wasn't happy with it. So I just deiced to pick it back up and finish it. I hope your eyeballs enjoy themselves.

Heres what is was like before i picked it back up and the sketch.

-Dan Maynard

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Gas Mask Selfie

I'm sorry to say this, but we as a group have not done so well at updating our blog. To fill you in on what's been up, I've just finished my most recent piece. I designed a cover for this online magazine. It talks about various global issues including the protests that have been happening in Brazil. These kids are using cell phones and tablets to report on what's actually happening in Brazil. Hence the gas
mask selfie. Click the link and check out the magazine even if it's in another language. Also, I was featured in the magazine.

http://issuu.com/guerrilhagrr/docs/grr_guerrilha_-_ed1  (Okay, so the link won't work. You might try to copy and paste it. I couldn't figure it out. My bad.)

Have a good one! If you're an aspiring artist or just a fan, please feel free to ask us questions. We'll even do a post about it.


Friday, January 31, 2014

Dan Maynard WIP

The Merchant (not final title)

This is the underpainting for my next personal piece I started in-between jobs. Hopefully I will be able to the the final done before too long.

Take care,

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Poignant Existence - Final

Poignant Existence - Travis Hayes

I'm happy to say that, I'm finished with this piece! Due to traveling, commissions, and other random events. I've stared at this piece much too long. But Overall, I'm happy with the results. Due to prior posts I wont go into detail of progress or anything of that matter. This piece, along with future pieces will be partnered with poetry where you can find on my website: www.travishayesillustration.com

Also, I think that I've decided that this will be my last piece done entirely in Photoshop. I feeling of holding a brush is something I miss oh-too much.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


My first painting of 2014! and the first after 7 months of no painting DX I refuse to let that happen again.

Anyway, it's done. I could have spent more time on it, but it was mostly just to make sure I'm still an artist.

and here's a fun little gif showing how far along the painting was after each of my 6 sessions working on it.

Now it's time to plan a large scale painting that will be my main focus for probably a couple months, once I decide on what to paint that is.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A Man out of Time

I'm glad to finally share this with you all. Albeit, a little late, but still glad to share!

To start, I guess I should actually introduce myself. The name's Andrew Thompson. Like so many of us on this blog, I graduated this past May and I'm currently out in Boston working as a graphic designer for Reebok. Unfortunately I haven't really done a full scale illustration since school until now. They told us how tough it would be to work a full time job and do art on the side, but I never really believed it. If you'd like to see more of my work, you can see my site by clicking my name off to the right, but you can also check out my tumblr and Behance at:

A quick recap, I did this illustration not just for The Winter Soldier. Recently I've come to really admire the Captain and his unwavering character. Despite all the shit he's been through, he still fights for what he believes. I wanted to show his transformation from the First Avenger, to Winter Soldier. To the hopeful kid from Brooklyn to the broken man who is being attacked by those he used to work side by side with.

The following are in progress shots while I was working.


One last thing before I go. I'd like to welcome anyone interested in art or studying art to leave us a comment about things you'd like to see. Tutorials, critiques, Who inspires us, style, etc. Thanks so much!

Hope you enjoy our site.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Justice Drawings

Fishin' 2013

The past few months since summer ended have been interesting to say the least. I moved back home, visited NYC frequently, went to a lot of art events (Illuxcon, Art Out Loud, etc.), met more great artists, started drawing and practicing a lot more and got an internship with a studio back in Columbus for the new year.

In October I took part in a drawing challenge created by Jake Parker called Inktober. Every day of the month of Inktober October hundreds of artists would do a drawing in ink. Every. Day. I chose to do it to improve, grow and form positive habits because that is what it was all about. Here are a few of the drawings that came out of it:

Smaug (Not from Inktober but fit the subject-matter) 

Things slowed down during the holiday season and I stopped working on personal projects I set out for myself. Now that I have an internship with a possible full-time job lined up I can start again with a pair of fresh eyes on the work I have.

Next post I make will be about all my personal projects that involved robots and other industrial works from the past year that need finishing. Keep on making kick-ass work everyone.


"Beauty Minus Beast"

I was commissioned to do some album artwork for a friend of mine. We decided to do 3 different covers for the album using the titles of the album's three singles -- "The Idea of Two," "I Don't Want to Fall in Love" and "The Bird Path." The album has a folk sound and deals with the themes of failed relationships.
The fourth graphic is an outtake inspired by Robert Crumb's blues series, but I thought it was worth sharing. :)
- Alex

Acrylic Practice

Now that Illustration is my hobby and not my career I've been thinking a lot about how the switch effects my art. One thing I've decided is that I want to try my hand at traditional painting again. Digital was nice for being fast and cost effective but I really miss the feeling of having a physical painting to hang on a wall. I also want to try painting large scale. 

However I'm not in any rush so I figured it would be good to start with a small acrylic painting (this will be 30cm x 40cm) I wanted to do something familiar so naturally a dragon made sense. I also didn't want to do something that required a ton of backstory. I'm definitely an illustrator not a writer. So here's what I've got so far.

It's been so long since I used acrylic, and I don't think I've ever painting in acrylic on a canvas (I haven't found a place where I can buy illustration board yet :/) So if anyone can remember some good ways to prep a canvas for acrylic that would be very helpful. Video tutorials would be even better. as of now I'm planning to do probably 1 coat of gesso, then do my transfer and enhance the drawing on the actual canvas and then do another coat of thin gesso to seal the drawing and go from there.

Also any comments or critiques of the piece so far are welcome and appreciated.