The Lion King in 3D

My absolute favorite Disney animation of all time was re-released in theaters this past Friday! This film still moves me to this day and is one of the reasons I have always enjoyed art from a very young age. I am surprised my VHS copy of The Lion King survived the 90's. In anticipation of the movie, I was inspired to sketch up a quick lion in honor of the 3D release. I wonder if I can resurface some of my earliest Lion King fan art? Hmm, I'll get back to you on that!

The Daily Zoo

I was on Amazon the other night browsing the endless pages of books I wish to buy but do not have the cash to purchase, nor space to store them. From time to time I come across a book that I absolutely must have. I experienced this very phenomenon the other night, and I watch the resident moths fly out of my wallet as I cracked it open to place my order. A few days later I found myself yanking the door off of my mailbox to reveal my new copy of "The Daily Zoo", by Chris Ayers. Chris is a concept artist residing in California. Not only is he an incredible artist, he is a cancer survivor. Chris was diagnosed with leukemia on April Fool's Day in 2005. One year following his diagnosis and fortunately his recovery, he embarked on a sketch journey that stretched over the course of on year. The creation of this book provided Chris the opportunity to push his imagination to the limits and celebrate each new day of good health.

This book is visual candy. Page after page is overflowing with beautifully rendered sketches, caricatures, and doodles. Much like Chris, I too have an affinity for both animals and art. This book pays tribute to his own fascination with the animal kingdom and luckily, after a random online purchase, I am lucky enough to view it. "The Daily Zoo" also boasts the lesson that life is short and you should do what you love and feed your soul. You never know what life will throw your way, so make the best of every situation and enrich your life with all the things you love most. I highly recommend this book as a source of inspiration for any artist. It is also quite inspirational to read about his fight against cancer. The perseverance and optimism he maintained throughout is admirable to say the least.

If you purchase Chris' book, not only will you receive 160 pages of delicious artwork, a portion of the proceeds go to support cancer-related charities and research. A win/win situation!

My cat checking out the centerfold.

For more information, go here!

Happy Birthday Drew!


Contrary to what this card might lead you to believe, he is turning 24 years old today, not 7, ha! His favorite Pokémon is Charizard, and he's been obsessing about Pokémon Black & White coming out, so I thought this to be appropriate.

* Pokémon and Charizard are copyright © Nintendo, Game Freak, Creatures, and/or all other applicable parties.

Before & After Sketches

This week, I've had a few different projects going on. Number one was to find some inspiration! After being in school for four years I am feeling a bit like a robot. While on one hand it is a good thing to be able to finish projects on time and to standard, without the guidance of an assignment, I'm feeling somewhat lost. On my quest to find something that would inspire me to draw, I began thinking about some of my favorite movies, animations, and artists. One subject that has always been a popular topic with me is Maurice Sendak's "Where the Wild Things Are". I retrieved my beloved copy from the shelf and skipped right to the page that boasts my favorite monster, the page where Max meets a sea dragon. I was heartbroken that he wasn't featured in Spike Jones' film that was released last year, so I began recreating the scene for fun. I'm hoping to color it sometime this weekend. Where the Wild Things Are, as well as a handful of other favorite children's books from my childhood (and adulthood, shhhh), always help to rekindle my imagination. Sometimes it's difficult to get in touch with your inner-child, when your pet cat could become a lion that shoots laser beams from his whiskers, and throwing a blanket over a chair meant you'd just created the most impenetrable fort known to mankind. If you want to think creatively, you can never, ever let go of your imagination.

Below I'm posting some before and after images of some quick sketches and paintings that I have created in Photoshop. I think my personal favorites would have to be the sea frog/newt and the rooster. The rooster was a character design done prior to one of my animations. As far as the sea frog/new goes, I'd really like to place him into a water environment. However, I think he needs a more animated pose, so I might recreate it. And I'm not entirely set on his coloration just yet. I'm thinking something more along the lines of a turquoise or green might be more appropriate. We'll see! Share your thoughts, what color do you see him as?

Into the "REAL WORLD!"

Pssssst, guess what?


By the way, that's me with the dino cap. I'M FAMOUS! For the first time in I don't know how long, I have the option to do what I want in life. What an incredibly liberating feeling! It's also remotely terrifying. I'm currently attempting to set up our dining room into a pseudo-studio, and I'm beginning my quest on discovering how to merge art and animals and make that my life. I've found some incredibly inspirational character designers located in California by the name of David Coleman and Joe Weatherly. I am going to order a couple of their books/DVDs and study on my own time. My lease is up in the fall, then it's off to who knows where for me. Grad school? Maybe so. California? Maybe so. Time will tell.

Anyways, back to the art. I have a whole mess of things to post here, but let's get down to what the people really want.. the nudes. *wink*

This is a digital painting done in my fall 2010 Figure Drawing III class over the course of a few sessions. I was at last allowed to experiment with digital! No more charcoal hands, woohoo! Alas, it is over now, but I was pretty pleased with the result. There are still some spots I plan on touching up, but without having this particular model on hand, I no longer have the luxury of adding in accurate/fine detail.

I'll be adding some new stuff soon, my last semester was sort of a slow time for art as I was prepping for graduation and my soul was slowly dying during my senior seminar class, but I made it! Happy New Year to everyone, I am excited to see what it will bring my way.
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