Friday, September 27, 2013

They STILL haven't stopped skankin'!

Here's some new tour posters I just designed for Reel Big Fish. This first one was based on an idea from Aaron (Reel Big Fish's frontman)

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Aaron thought it'd be funny to show a bunch of old folks skankin' to show that they indeed did not stop skankin'. So I decided to base it on the classic ska icons, Walt Jabsco and Betty Beat.

This second poster was for select tour dates with Goldfinger.

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For this one I thought it would be fun to combine my RBF Candy Coated Fury characters with Goldfinger's space dominatrix character. This was especially exciting for me because I've been a fan of Goldfinger since their self-titled album was released in '96 and I fell in love with the album artwork, which is where that character first appeared. 

I also added in the classic Reel Big Fish mascot/logo into the Dom's fishbowl which was designed by the insanely talented and legendary Parker Jacobs.
Now I was told by Reel Big Fish's management that for whatever reason Goldfinger's management said that Space Dom couldn't look exactly like the original, so if I wanted to draw her, I'd have to change her. Well, in an attempt to make her look different and make her look like she matched the style of the Candy Coated Fury characters, I rounded her head and made the eyes much bigger. Well, someone pointed out that she now looks like Sedusa from The Powerpuff Girls. Unfortunately, while this certainly was not intentional, I have to agree. It's no secret that I'm a big fan of the art direction of Powerpuff Girls and was heavily influenced by it, but I certainly don't ever want to directly swipe from any of my influences unless it's a direct, intentional, and credited parody. I really, really wish I could have gone back and changed it, but unfortunately, it's too late.

Now I have to say, it was really rad to see my artwork up in lights in Times Square in NYC at the Best Buy Theater!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

It's a SKA World After All!

Here's some poster art I made for the 3rd annual "It's a Ska World After All" ska themed day at Disney World.

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2 cameo caricatures on this poster are the guys on the scooter in the upper corner. The guy with the balloon and turkey leg is Brian Klemm of Suburban Legends and the other is Tazy Phyllipz of Ska Parade Radio. I based this one off of this old Date Night at Disneyland poster.

Here is a modified version for posters and stickers. You can get these as well as other designs on buttons and patches at the Ska World store.

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Saturday, June 22, 2013

"We toons may act idiotic, but we're not stupid!"

Today is the 25th anniversary of the release of "Who Framed Roger Rabbit", so I decided to make a little fan art.

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I can't even begin to describe what an impact this movie had on my life. I was 8 years old when it came out, and that is the earliest specific date I can recall. It's like when you're a child, you don't have a real solid sense of time yet. All events over the span of years get lumped into this one big nebulous chunk of time, with no real dates or years attached to any specific moment to delineate one from the other. It all becomes "back when I was a kid". But "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" was such a momentous event in my life, I've always been able to remember it as the summer of '88. 
This movie was like a depiction of my dreams made manifest on celluloid. My parents tell me that when I was a toddler watching Looney Tunes, I had tried to crawl into the TV because I wanted to live with the cartoons. I wanted a world where cartoons were real. Roger Rabbit was the first time I actually got to see that idea of cartoons as being real and part of our world. Now I know that Who Framed Roger Rabbit is certainly not the first time cartoons have been integrated with live action film. But, back in '88, I had not yet seen the Porky/Daffy short "You Ought To Be In Pictures" or any of Disney's "Alice" comedies, or even Disney's "Mary Poppins" (I never really cared for many of the Disney live action films when I was a kid, and sadly, I still don't)
I still remember sitting in the theater when the big "Maroon Cartoon" title cards popped up and "Somethin's Cookin'" began and while watching it with wide eyes wondering how they were going to make the jump from this 100% animated cartoon into the real world. I was thinking "is the jump into the real world what changes Baby Herman into a cigar smoking tough guy, like he is in the commercials on TV? Are they gonna have to try to get back? Is that plot?" 5 minutes later when the camera pulls back to reveal its all a set, and they were just filming a cartoon on a soundstage in Hollywood the same way they would make any other movie, it completely blew my mind. That was the world I wanted to live in.
After that, I drew Roger Rabbit obsessively for the next 3 or 4 years on any paper I could get my hands on. I'll have to post some of those drawings later. Roger Rabbit was definitely a benchmark in my life and I really hope he makes a return to the screen someday, and I really hope that I may be lucky enough to get to work with him professionally one day.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Grab yer crayons!

Hey, kids, here's something pretty cool! I had the honor of having my work featured in the newest issue of Color Ink Book!

Color Ink Book is a DYI art magazine by the Brothers Washburn and each issue features artwork from a wide selection of pop artists ranging from world famous to up-and-coming. Each artist's work is presented as simple black and white line art that the reader has the option of coloring however they'd like!
I'm in volume #19 which features work by Martin Ontiveros, Jason Jecenko, Cody Vrosh and Motorbot; also features works by 3 Sheets, Jared Wright, Jared Konopitski, Tom Joyce, Ciou, Mr. Penfold, and myself.

I submitted 13 pieces and 6 were selected. Here are the 5 that didn't make the cut. To see the ones that did, you can buy it here.

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Monday, June 10, 2013

Joyriding with the cool cats

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Here's the final cover art for the debut EP from Hooray For Our Side. The band's vocalist, Evan, and I are both huge Back To The Future fans, so we thought to create the cover, it would be fun create the album art, from concept to final product, while watching the entire Back To The Future trilogy over pizza and beer. It ended up taking quite a bit longer than that. We met with various other members and friends of the band over the course of 4 nights and while working on this, we watched the entire BTTF trilogy, Brad Neely's Wizard People Dear Reader, Pee-wee's Big Adventure, and several episodes from season 3 of The Simpsons. We also had about 6 pizzas, 40 chicken wings, 2 burritos, 1 bottle of cake flavored vodka, 2 cases of soda, and about 45 beers.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

"Where did you get that red sharkskin suit? It is awesome!"

Here's an illustration did did for the new episode of Podhouse 90, a scripted anthology series of original radio plays by Frank Conniff (Mystery Science Theater 3000, Cinematic Titanic, Invader ZIM)

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I had done an illustration for an episode last year, The Wonderful Pundits of Oz. This episode is full length musical comedy called "South by South Satan", Starring Dana Gould, J. Elvis Weinstein, Emily Maya Mills, Laraine Newman, Emo Philips, David Higgins, Janie Haddad Tompkins, Joe Keyes, Ron Lynch, Jimmy Dore, Stef Zamorano, Mark Thompson, Kipleigh Brown and Frank Conniff. You can get for free here on iTunes!

Here's are some rough concepts I sent to Frank.
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#5 was in reference to one of my favorite episodes of MST3K. I didn't actually think Frank would go for it, I just threw it into the mix for the hell of it (pun very much intended) since he was a writer and actor on the show. We decided to go with #4. You can see that originally Satan had a bigger, much more pronounced goatee, but the script called for a soul patch. Here are some other development sketches and an alternate layout.

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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

78 RPMs of Fury!

Candy Coated Fury, the Reel Big Fish album that I created the artwork for last year, is now available on vinyl!

You can get your copy of just the record itself here or get a bundle that includes a rad pair of slipmats

You can also see an extensive blog post detail the step by step how I created all of the album artwork here.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Bernie the Butter Sculpture

Last year I had started doing monthly illustrations for the now defunct Cartoon Dump, a live show created and written by Frank Conniff (Mystery Science Theater 3000) that parodies the children's shows of yesteryear, hosted by a cast of misfits that suffer from substance abuse and mental illness while the worst and crappiest vintage cartoons from Jerry Beck's extensive animation library are shown throughout the show.

Before I began doing the monthlies, I was asked to create a series of illustrations to accompany one of the musical numbers;"Bernie the Butter Sculpture". These were projected next to the actors while they sang the song. Moodsy the Clinically Depressed Owl seemed to take a certain delight in Compost Brite's look or horror and misery as the song progressed. Cartoon Dump hasn't run in 7 months and I'm not sure if its coming back or if these will be used again, so I think it's probably safe to share these now. If it does come back, I'd like to redraw them anyway, as I feel I could do much better now. I added Frank's original lyrics to the bottom of the pages for this post, but they didn't actually appear on the projections.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

All I wanted was a dodgeball! Just one dodgeball!

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This is a logo I designed for The Alcoballics, my good friend Jonny Riot's dodgeball team in Buffalo NY. Jonny and I played together in our first band, The Moneyshots, in 2001 and he was the one that gave me the name Thom Foolery.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Have brain. Will travel

acrylic on canvas
This was my contribution to the 3rd Annual Red Dot Auction. It raised $400 for the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity. Special thanks to my pal, Bernard Gumz who helped show me where I should place my highlights. The title comes from a quote by
George Santayana that Chuck Jones would often use to describe the Coyote. "A fanatic is someone who redoubles his efforts when he has forgotten his aim."

Chud kept me company while I was working on it.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

¡Dia de los Mars Attacks!

¡Atención, los seres humanos sucios! ¡Su planeta patético está condenada. ¡Prepararse para la aniquilación total!

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I'm a huge fan of Mars Attacks, specifically, the original bubble gum cards produced by Topps from 1962. So, naturally, I was really excited when Pete from legendary ska band, The Porkers, commissioned me to make this t-shirt design for his company, Hardcore Logo.

The idea was to draw a martian as a Mexican Dia de los Muertos sugar skull. I decided to add a little reference to the 1996 Tim Burton film by adding the Martian flag on the forehead

You can order your shirts here

Thursday, April 4, 2013

"Is you is, or is you aint my baby?"

Here is my piece for The HB Show - A Group Art Show Tribute to Hanna-Barberra.

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This piece is 18x24, acrylic on illustration board. It was inspired by a classic scene from one of my favorite Tom and Jerry shorts, "Swingin Serenade" (1946)

The show opens this Saturday, April 6th at the Van Eaton Gallery. Over 100 incredible artists participating! You can see the rest of the work online here at the Van Eaton Gallery website.

If you're in the Los Angeles area, come on out to the opening reception!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

"Inka Dinka Doo"

So, as I mentioned in the last blog post, I've been working on my digital inking since I got a new Cintiq. Here's some recent pieces I've inked, along with their original pencil on paper drawings. I think these are getting better, but there's definitely room for improvement.
These inked drawings are for a a project I'm very excited about and I'll be announcing at some point in the near future.

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Monday, April 1, 2013

"Don't stop skankin'!"

Here's a tour poster I did back in December for my pals, Reel Big Fish, but forgot to post it.

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This poster was for the US leg of the world tour which was this past January and February. Since the tour was in support of the album they released last July, which I also illustrated, I knew I wanted to incorporate the same characters. For those who don't recognize him, the guy in the middle who is at the mercy of these cuddly sadists is Aaron Barrett, the singer and guitar player for the band. 

On a side note, this is the first piece I inked using my new Wacom Cintiq. Previously, I had inked things like the album cover in Adobe Illustrator and it was all just vector paths. I think I could do much better better now that I've had more experience with the Cintiq. I'll be posting some samples of my more recent inked projects in the next day or two.

Here are a few of the early concepts for the poster.

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Sunday, March 31, 2013

"We close our eyes"

2 years ago, I said I might like to revisit this painting. Well I finally did.

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I had the great fortune of being able to give this to Tim Burton this past November. His work, especially his drawings and paintings, have been a big influence on me, so it was a tremendous honor to get to meet him and give him some of my work. I wanted to give him this one because I felt it reflected some of that influence. This piece isn't supposed to necessarily scream "Burton!". I think it shows the influence in terms of theme perhaps, but I wanted it to have my own voice and style behind it. I didn't want to just make a painting of Jack Skeltington or something, because I feel that doesn't show influence. That's just regurgitation. Plus that kinda stuff is a dime a dozen on  Tim seemed genuinely excited and grateful to get it. Even if he was just blowing smoke, it made me feel pretty damn good to shake his hand and share some of my work with someone whose own work has meant so much to me for so many years. I feel incredibly grateful to say that I have now met my two biggest influences. The other being Chuck Jones, whom I had met when I was 14.

For some more info/insight into the piece itself, check out the original blog post from 2 years ago.