Monday, June 26, 2006

Repost: Deviant Art Journal 01


A Bit of Personal History

Well here goes. Blogging, online journals, documentation, self expression, and reaching out to the world electronically, all in an effort to promote myself and my meager career as an illustrator and cartoonist. This is something I’ve wanted to do for awhile now. The problem has been that I’ve always doubted anyone would be interested in my inane little ramblings, that I wouldn’t really have anything to say, and that I wouldn’t be able to stick to it and keep it going. Despite those doubts, I’ve decided that now is the time to give it a shot.

About a year and a half ago I decided that it was finally time to shit or get off the pot. I’d been playing around with my life time goal of being a successful comic illustrator and comic book artist since I graduated from college in 1996, but I just hadn’t achieved any kind of consitant success. There’d been an illustration here, a some pages of comics art there, and just a few pages of published work. All of it was very much under the radar and undisciplined. At this point my biggest claims to fame were that I had graduated from college with highest honors and the glowing approval of legendary cartoonist Stephen R. Bissette (who’s semi-regular and always insightful blog can be found here [link] ) who had very graciously agreed to be one my academic evaluators, I had done a handful of comics shorts for the Games Workshop company, Black Library, and I was the guy who dropped the ball on Deathwatch (a larger Black Library project that I was slotted to pencil and ink, but for various reasons, was only able to produce 14 meager pages before I was taken off the book). In my opinion, not much to show for nine years effort. Oh, and I had managed to go through several inane and low paying day jobs in that time.

So a little over a year and a half ago I decided that it was time to finally get serious and make something happen. A friend, the infinitely generous Chris Hutchings, had hooked me up with my first “real” job in the entertainment industry, working as a designer for the Discovery Channel show, Monster House. That went very well and I had the opportunity to work on two episodes before the show was cancelled. I also went out and picked up a copy of the 2005 Artists & Graphic Designers Marketplace guide. Well, here was a book that I needed. While most of the career guidelines were things that I already knew I should be doing, I hadn’t actually done them yet. Sometimes it takes a sledge hammer to head to get me moving in the right direction and here it was. About that time I discovered Deviant Art and decided to use it as my new online portfolio. I also established a DA print account with every intention of getting some work up and for sale. As you can see, I haven’t really gotten around to that yet, but I’d like to think it’s because I’ve been too busy.

After working on Monster House, I took a job for a friend, Joel Bevacqua, doing storyboard and design work on his movie, Deadly Buda. ([link]) Shortly thereafter I was received an offer from Speakeasy Comics to do a science fiction graphic novel with the very talented Travis Johnson. Speakeasy has since gone out of business, but Travis and I have another project in the works that I’ll keep you posted on here. As Monster House was cancelled, my friend Chris, mentioned earlier, moved on to another production company and brought me on board to draw some pictures the would be animated and included in a History Channel documentary about old west sharpshooters. You’ll find just a smattering of those drawings in my gallery here, and I’ll post some info on when the show will air when I have it.

Oh, perhaps most important, something else very significant happened about a year ago as well. I met a girl and fell in love. Within two weeks of dating Samantha I knew that she was the “one” and I asked her to marry me. She said yes, and we’ve been inseparable ever since. I cannot say enough about how supportive and encouraging she has been or how wonderful it is to have her in my life. We’re expecting out first child this September, a girl to be named Violet Eve, and we’ve moved from Los Angeles to Montana to stay with her family for the duration of the pregnancy.

Currently, I have several projects in the works. My old college room mate, Ben, has me drawing a few ideas for a movie project he’s working on. Travis and I are hard at work making our new book, “Acquisitions”, a reality. I’m also trying to figure out if I can juggle a few offers I’ve received after answering some listings on Digital Webbing ([link]). (Thanks very much to mechangel2002 [link] for pushing me in that direction.) And I’m doing whatever I can to further market myself and get my work out there.

Which brings me, finally, to my point for writing this. Taking a hint from Holli Conger ([link]) and her article in the 2006 Artists & Graphic Designers Marketplace guide, I want to use this journal to document my artistic and self-promotional activities, and to hold myself accountable and make sure that I follow through with my intentions. I also want to use it as way to keep friends, family, and business acquaintances updated on what I’m up to. Perhaps I’ll make a few new friends along the way as well. I’m not sure if what I write here will be at all entertaining, insightful, or interesting. We’ll just have to see what happens. I intend to post something at least once a week, perhaps starting with a simple breakdown of my activities for the past week and moving on from there. Hopefully, I’ll come up with a more interesting format as I gain more experience with this sort of thing. And if anyone has any suggestions or requests, please let me know. I should have another post up later today, detailing the week that has led up to this post, and then another next Sunday or Monday morning.

Until then, take care,

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