Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Thursday, October 09, 2014


Just finished this painting. I'm very pleased with it, probably heavily because of the subject. My favorite kids. This is nice and big and will probably hang in our dinning room.

24"x 36" Oil on Board

Friday, September 19, 2014

Friday, September 12, 2014

Mr. Ben Folds

Saw a Ben Folds concert recently. He puts on a great show. I thought I would do a digital painting of him. A little different technique here put I was pretty happy with the look. A soft painting with some hatching work over top.

Monday, September 08, 2014


So you've probably seen the pictures where the artist has kids do a drawing then he renders then out. After I finished this one up my 3 year old decided to do the opposite and finish up one of my drawings. I think it's great.

Friday, August 22, 2014

and Color

I've got plans to post a video of the color process I used for this.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tone painting video

A tone painting of a drawing of mine. This is about a half hour compressed down to a couple minutes. I've been trying to post a couple videos of things people want like the finish shading on a drawing and current color method for digital painting but they're still not working out so maybe this will be of interest while you continue to wait. Sorry.

I put the drawing on it's own layer set to multiply, on the base layer I use the paint bucket to apply this greenish brown tone. Then on a layer in between those two I do my painting.
Always follow the general to specific rule. I start out with broad brush strokes defining the overall values then work down to more specifics. First adding darks and when those are getting close I add some lights. Most of the painting is done with the base tone, a 70% dark value then a 30% light value. Only toward the end I will start to use the colors within this range. And at the very end, real bright and darks values to pop specific limited spots.

Hope that helps.

Monday, August 18, 2014


A little something I did for The New Era magazine.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Finally, a process video

At long last, after many requests I've finally found the initiative to post a process video. Its rough but here it is. 

This shows about 12 minutes of drawing compressed down to 90 seconds. Done in Photoshop but the principle is no different then working in my sketchbook.

The most important rule is to start out as general as possible. I start with a really rough circle just to lay out a starting shape/size. The circle becomes obsolete in no time but it served it's purpose. Then it's the big shapes, in this case the face and the hair. Next a quick center line and a nose, mouth and eye line. From there building it in with short geometric lines always following the general to specific rule. I do all this work with lighter lines and a softer touch so they are easy to remove as more solid lines are placed (particularly when working on paper).

People like my crosshatching finish work but this is the most important step to the drawing, getting the structure correct. Feeling confident with your foundation allows you to be bold with your polish work.
Hope that helps. Feel free to ask any questions and look out for more steps soon.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Sketch #76

Drawing in the sketchbook again. My current mechanical pencil lead is a bit hard so I got out a regular pencil to push the darks.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Dinner- paint 5

After finishing up some other projects I'm back to this painting of the kids. It's coming along. Compare this second pass at the baby to the first pass here.
The real tricky part is getting the paint styles to match up, I am seeing a problem with each kid is painted slightly different because of their being painted on different days. I figure I'll have to just keep going at them but that could also be a problem as I want to keep the style loose with shadows that are transparent. We'll see I guess.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Dinner- paint 4

My boy in the center is rendered out just like I want. My little girl is still kind of flat but I like the colors as of now. And the baby looks nice and innocent but he's still early too.

Oil on board 24" x 36"

Monday, April 14, 2014

Friday, April 11, 2014

Dinner- paint3

The third figure it coming along.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Dinner- paint1

I'm starting into a new piece I am pretty excited about. I feel like I'm hitting a stride with oil painting lately. Looser, a little more impressionistic with the strokes and the colors. This is day 1 about 5 hours in. The face is washed out some. I think this one might be hard determining when to leave things alone and when to continue to develop. Wish me luck.

This is related to the drawing posted below.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Monday, March 24, 2014

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

drawing #70

I thought it was time to get a nicer scan of a drawing. This drawing was shared a couple posts down. I like the photo look, it feels closer to the more real feeling of holding the drawing. But it's also nice to analyze an accurate representation of it scanned in.

It's my delightful little boy drawn with a mechanical pencil on a 9"x12" sketchbook. Yes, it was from a photograph, we were lucky to get him to hold still for the split second it takes to get a photo a 4 hour drawing session is probably unrealistic. I did get a quick life drawing once while he paused to watch a few seconds of a show, I'll try to share someday.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Dinner- sketch

I'm developing a painting with this one.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

All tied up

 My latest and greatest cover for The Weekly Standard. I am really happy with how this turned out and with a mere 24 hours turnaround time. I took a little time to get inspired while I waited for the final concept and it really paid off I felt. Went really smooth.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

My favorite little man

Hopefully it doesn't bother anyone if I share posts across my different outlets.

I drawing I was working on last night. My wife says an eye is off, I don't see it but I've been staring at it for a few hours so she is probably right. Funny how a slight angle to the head makes measuring so much more complex. I'll scan this one in sometime soon so you can get the full look.

Also, people frequently ask about my tool. This is the drafting pencil that I use 90% of the time on my drawings. It uses tiny .5 size lead, makes it hard to kill in large areas but has a nice tight clean line.

Monday, March 03, 2014

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

figure 66

 A figure from last weekend. As much as I like drawing on a big pad with pastel I feel like I give up a lot of control. This time I used a blue pencil and put in the darks with a mechanical pencil.

On another note, I started up an Instagram account. I actually really like the natural look that the phone photo gives. Seems like a much better representation of the real feel of the artwork that I am holding in my hands. But the scanned version above gives you the full deal. If your on Instagram give me a follow, I expect to post a lot of stuff that I think is good in the faster format.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Field #2

I decided my Field painting from a while back wasn't cutting it. I liked the idea and composition but kept looking back at it unsatisfied. So I've gone back to the drawing board with a more realistic style. It would be nice if it was more like a digital file so I could keep the previous one and keep going but alas. Hopefully I can improve on it, I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Figure drawing #64

Finally got some photos of a recent figure drawing. I liked the pose a lot. My little boy managed to step on it before I could get a picture so it has the added character of a hole and a small foot print to provide the finish.

Below are some process shots.
The first is the gesture phase, maybe 3 minutes but it probably has a better flow to it, less stiff, but the long pose is a couple hours so you can't blame her.
The last is the halfway point after working out the placement and proportions and before the value work. Hopefully it is useful to somebody.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


A painting done last week for The Weekly Standard. I got nearly 2 days on this a whole day more then typical. So although it was a quick turnaround I had a little more time to simmer with it, a slightly less frantic pace gave me a chance to stick with the drawing longer and be more methodical. I felt like the rendering turned out much better. For your enjoyment I've included an animation below of the steps. The great art director over there requested up a sized up beard which was the right call of course and improved the feel but I wish I had thought of this earlier to incorporate it better into the piece. It's funny how you get your head down in the work and you don't see things that should be obvious but are not because you aren't looking for them.

Friday, January 10, 2014

sketch 66

feeling a little swamped lately.