Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Late Night painting

I woke up in the middle of the night and my mind was racing with an idea. And such a mood strikes me in the middle of the night, i cannot for the life me fall back to sleep so I get up and draw, paint, write, whatever. I do something to get the idea out of my head and on to paper.

So I painted a caricature of my friend Nolan. He is a innocent bystander in the idea. But when i got up and sat down to get the idea out of my head, he was so vivid in my mind at the time I had to start there first. My hope is that over the next few weeks i can get both him and the other characters animated for a little 30-60 second short in toon boom. That is if my life and all the other projects I am working on allow it. :D

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Website Update

I am updating my portfolio website and as such any one who would be normally trying to get to my portfolio site will be redirected to my blog. It is my hope that the website update will not take too long, but until then please take a look around my blog.

A copy of my resume can be downloaded here.

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Animated Arts

Last Wednesday, I and a dozen other artist held an art show to show case the work of local arts who work in the media arts industry; from cartoons to video games. Along with us show casing our select work, there was a drink and draw held up stairs where you could watch a bunch of preforming artist perform their acts. The performers would hold a 30 second pose before their set and then do longer held poses in the back afterwards.
The night was fantastic and all the art was great. The hiccup I had was being held up in traffic for an hour while on my way over to hang up my art work before the start of the show. Anyway, if you want to check out the fantastic work, it will all be hanging up til the end of the month at Analog Cafe on SE Hawthorne and 7th in Portland, Oregon.

The few of the samples I hung up are from the series of illustrations that i am working up for my table top rpg. The Illustration are coming along nicely and I still hope to have the kickstarter for it set up by the end of the year.

Here is some of the work I have hung up. These are 2/3rds of the Illustration for the races that are in the game.

These can be brought as prints in my Redbubble Shop

Here are some more photos from the Art Show:

My wall Space.

Some of my friend Morgan's work

One of Becky Steel's Self Portraits.

And Some of the 3 Dimensional work that was used in Stop-motion projects.

My Friend Danny Popovici has posted a lot of his drawing from the Drink and draw on his Blog, check them out Here.

Monday, September 16, 2013


Recently, I opened a shop on Redbubble to sell prints and such of my art work. I am slowly putting pieces up on the site. Right now I have a few of my Halloween Cards up, one of my favorite piece a tentacle headed alien, and last night I just put up a new piece to a series of illustrations I am working on called "Cool Dads."

You can check out the shop here, and keep up to date on what I am selling.

When I started to look at opening a shop I had looked at three sites. Redbubble, Society6, and Cafepress. There was a third one I looked at, but that site had a a board of judges that you had to get through in order to join. If they didn't like your work, then you couldn't join the site. I'm pretty sure I'm not ready for that.
Society6 had an interesting social network element that help cross promote your art, but based on what I was reading its probably just as much work, if not more, to promote yourself and get people to your shop. That being said, Society6 has the better profit system, but they also have a higher minimum amount that you need to make before they pay you than the other two. Redbubble has the same type of profit system as cafepress, where you can see how much you'll make off each item sold and have control over that. If you want a bigger return you just increase the percentage of profit, which in turn does increase the price of the item. I went with Redbubble though, because they have the best stickers, since everything else was just about the same. This is my first time doing this so its kind of an experiment for me. I'll try to do an update in a few months to record how this experiment is going.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Illustration Work

Recently I was contacted by a friend of a friend who I have not seen in many a year, from back when I was in High School. Anyway, this person wanted to hire me to illustrate a scene that was similar to what you see with Magic: The Gathering, for a series of playmates, card sleeves, and deck boxes.

Here is the original Sketch
He wanted a Zombie that was about to eat a fairy. This pretty much sold me right away.

Here is the painting at two different stages. I did the background on a separate layer to make it easier on myself. Also While painting I saw that the right hand was way to big and shrunk it and the fairy down a little.

With all the final details like blood; plus you will note that I changed my mind on how I had the Fairies wings designed. They are still butterfly inspired, but now a slightly more realistic shape and color. She looks like a the perfect damsel in distress.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

A little something I am working on

Currently I am working on a storyboard that will be for an animated short I want to use for my kickstarter. The Kickstarter is for the table top rpg game I developed and the animation will be used to get people jazzed up for it. I'll post some of the boards once I have them were I want them to go.

Until then, here is a little big monster I sketched up for the story.

Outside my own personally projects, I have been working on some storyboards for a up coming Pop-tarts commercial which is themed after the 2014 winter Olympics. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Here is the only Plein Air painting I was able to do while on vacation, visiting my wife's family in Iowa. I got to see the Mississippi river and watched a boat go through one of the locks - which takes at least an hour. So I had time to sit and paint for a time. This was the only time I was able to do this. The rest of the family are not artist an so everyday we went somewhere where we didn't stand still for any length of time for me to paint.

I didn't like this painting so much after I finished it, but now I like it a bit more. As always it is a learning experience, which is all that counts.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th Of July

Happy "North Americans Claim Independence from Britain" Day!

Sorry no picture for this. I have been really busy. Been working two different freelance jobs, however, the second one was moving much slower than the first. That being said we finally were approved to animate on the first 30 seconds last week and now I am moving on to the last 30 seconds.

Can't wait for this project to be over. Its not a bad project, its just that I will be flying out to Iowa next week and don't want any last minute problems trying to muck up those plans.

Anyway, here is a portrait of my wife that I painted.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

How to Draw Gesture

How to Draw Gesture

Worth wild to check out and tune in; even if you already know what a Gesture Drawing is.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Work in Progress.

I'm working on the layout for a Table Top Game that I had been working on. I started the project 9 years ago, and it has been done for 3 years and just sitting on a shelf while I got life after College to a stable point.  Life is stable so now it is time to move on it. The game is a Table top RPG and will have everything you need to play the game in one book, that being said I wrote enough stuff for it for 3 books. So i am distilling everything down for one book.

Anyway, I am also working on the art direction of the game. The game itself is simi-serious high fantasy fair. However, having played rpgs since high school I know that the players will bring whatever mood or attribute to the game they want, no matter what the game designers intent was. I am experimenting with a styles and I think I have found one that works. Its not like the art work that you find in games like D&D and is much more closer to a style like Joann Sfar's Dungeon (or Donjon if your french).

Anyway, here is the first piece that I worked up for the game that i plan to use as a header for the Monster/Creature section of the Book.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Moving Forward and Upward

It has been a while since the last time I posted on the blog. A lot has been going on. I did several tests to work on an animated series. Still waiting to hear back about that. I am working 2 freelance jobs at the same time and doing about 16-18 hour days. I am doing final layout on the Table Top RPG I designed and that has been sitting a while waiting for me to drag all the setting info into it. At the same time, I am creating all the art work for it.

Currently, I am finishing a storyboard gig and waiting to hear back about any possible changes. While i wait I doodle. Check it out:

Monday, April 8, 2013

Painting Time

Here is a painting I did for a friend's birthday. She really likes Adventure time (Don't we all), and she seems like the person who would paint a little bunny - you know if it was safe and stuff.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Update! and more sketches

Things have been picking up around here. Been busy. Which I love and hate at the same time. But its never a problem when it is something you love to do.

Anyway, Here is a turnaround for a character I am working on for a storyboard;

Wolf Girl Character Turnaround from Skull Dixon on Vimeo.

This is a simple turnaround for a paleo- era cavegirl for some storyboards I'm working on. I decided to go with a Pen Ward look.

Also here are some recent sketches:

There is a guy at intel who has long hair and a long beard, and it all blends together really well. Here is a sketch of him:

I did this one when I was waiting for my daughter to get done at the dentist office. The office was not very interesting looking from where I was sitting, so I drew my leg and my self drawing my leg.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Whack a Zombie Not A Mole

The game I helped design and animate is finally done and up for free download. Check it out at the Google Play store. My favorite part about the game is the Face mashing animate I created for it. Makes me chuckle ever time. The game was a spin off of the animated short we worked on during 2012.

Whack A Zombie Not A Mole

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The Making of a Goblin

This time around I wanted to share my working progress for creating a comic page for my web-comic series "Goblin Tale". Over the last few weeks, I have been refining and finding quicker ways to tighten down the progress so i don't spend all day working on a single page as I did in the past.

The first thing I do is work out a rough sketch of the page and the section of the story that that page will contain, which is all done within a homemade sketch book I have that is labeled, "Goblin Tale: Deadly Notes". I try to keep all my Goblin Tale sketch inside this book. Some times I don't have a clear Idea of what I am looking for as far as page layout and have to do several until I find the one I want. This page is a full splash page.

AS you can I add little notes along the side for various reasons, like explaining what a series of lines are suppose to look like in the end. This is one of my favorite sketches because it has so much expression and Rhythm. Once I sit down to make the larger cleaned up version, some of this is lost. This does not happen all the time, but this time I feel it did.

So here is the Clean version. Its not super clean and you can still see some of the construction lines. This is because there is no reason to make a fully clean version of the page if all I am going to do it digitally ink it on the computer. I decided to change the idea of the thick old vine into a interesting looking tree.

here I have scanned the clean sketch into Photoshop and have inked it. I use the pen tool which I then tell photoshop to stroke with the Brush tool. In order to do this you have to have the brush you want selected under the brush tool first or you could end up with whatever brush you used last. The command to stroke the pen line you've created is found with the pen tool selected and clicking the Right button on the mouse. There will be an option for Stroke. I use a separate layer from my sketch to do all my inking.
Once this is done, create another layer and name it color. I set the mode for this layer to Multiply and then go back to the Inked layer. I select areas of the Inked layer that will have the same base color with a wand tool. The I go to Select at the top of the screen and then to Modify, then Expand. I expand the Selection I have to about 2 points. What this will do is when I go back to the Color layer, the color I drop into those selected areas with the paint bucket will go passes the lines I have drawn and this way no white shows through. This use to be the longest process for me until I found this trick. Once I have all the base colors laid in, I use the brush tool to add different shades and textures to the background. The end result will look like this.

Then I begin to lay in the shadows as a separate layer, set to Darken and with the opacity turned down. I usually don't want the shadows to over power the scenes. To speed up the process I made a selection of everything that would cast a shadow on the wall and then laid in a dark purple to the shadow layer within the area of the selected area. I shift this over until it is where I want it and then for this one I also used masking to delete all the shadow from the areas I didn't want it to cover so it appeared to be behind the Tree and the Goblin.

Once I have this done I save it all as a PNG and open the the file in Illustrator. Here I drop in my pre-made word bubbles and lay in the text.The final result looks like this.

The process is not perfect in any way, but I'm working towards finding better and faster ways of doing this. One avenue I am looking into is using some other software other than Photoshop. Recently I have been lead to believe that I would be better off to use a cheap painting software, "Artrage". So when i try this software out I'll be sure to post about my experience.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Sketch until you get it right.

Here is a new sketch I did well on my break at Intel. This is one of their lobbies on the first floor.

I need to remember to spray all these sketches I have been doing with a fixative so that they don't get ruined.