Tuesday, March 20, 2018

baddest MoFo this side of Harlem....

So to continue in remembering my Instructor, I want to continue with this theme of The Last Dragon.  My instructor had told my class about the time he fought Tai Mak,(and won) at the tournament the talent scout for the Last Dragon was at.  The scout chose Tai Mak over Instructor and was a bit peeved about it.  So I took it upon myself to remind him of it, since it was one of my favorite bad movies to watch!  I would post The glow music on his Myspace and facebook to even meeting Tai Mak at a con and getting a picture with him and showing Instructor!  So in honor of him, I will start with the Shogun of Harlem!

Monday, March 19, 2018

In Rememberance of Argelio Chappotin

I still do not have the words as I post this, but this is my only way of processing, through art.  This man was a huge part of my life.  I will always remember him, and I hope I can help keep his memory going for till I'm no longer able to do so.

Monday, June 1, 2015

On the CONtrary...

Hey everyone!

I hope you guys had a great weekend, I know I did!  I just finished the Dallas Fan Expo aka Dallas Comic Con, and it was a blast!  First off, I didn't know until I got there, that I was sitting next to none other than, James O' Barr, creator of the Crow....  What?!  Of course that was on Friday, Sunday it was more like, oh...I'm sitting next to James O'Barr....again...  HA!  I kid, that man was funny!  And full of stories, and tips on art and working conventions.  Definitely a master of his craft, and an honor of sitting next to him, even if he ragged on me all weekend!  HA!  It was definitely one of the big highlights of the show.
Me wearing my Fernando Ruiz t-shirt, since he was a guest there also.  Had to make him proud!  
The place was packed, and that was a great thing!  I got to meet lots of people and spread the word about LARP!  They seemed pretty interested and was going to look for it when it comes out this summer.  I had the spiel down by Sunday...  I had a few requests for commissions which were a lot of fun including an Elfquest piece.
still haven't read this one....

Hulk piece in a guy's hulk themed sketchbook
I also sold my Attack on Titan piece, which means, I need to do that as a print for HeroesCon!
Attack on Titan, SOLD

and my Snake Eyes print was a hit.
Snake Eyes not with Nicolas Cage...

Another big highlight for me was meeting Mark Kistler from Imagination Station and Secret City, a show on PBS I used to watch when I was a kid.  I learned my basic shapes of drawing watching Secret City.  He would draw these floating islands that had waterfalls connecting to another floating island city with pipes and furry creatures.  He was my Captain Kangaroo, and I got the chance to meet him!  He was everything I remembered him to be from the show except a bit on the gray side, and wearing a kilt.  He even sounded like the show, it was awesome!  I was walking around and came across his booth, had no idea he was going to be there!  I ran up to him and said, "Oh my Gosh!  I watched your show religiously when I was a kid!  My mom showed me drawing skills, but it was you who introduced me to the world of cartooning!  I learned my basic shapes because of your floating cities!"  His eyes gleamed with excitement and noticed I was an exhibitor and asked what I did.  I told him all about Dark Horse and LARP!, and he was so thrilled, and I told him I owe it to him for directing me down this path at a very early age!  He came to my table to see my work, and kept using his exclamations that he used on the show, it was so great!  He gave me a print in exchange for one of mine, it truly was a memory I will cherish!  And with that I will leave you with this video of Secret City, so you all know the awesomeness I got to meet!  Till next time!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

The "I Can Do That!" mantra

Hello Everybody!

  I know you guys have missed me.  I'm sorry for not keeping up with this blog, but I got a bit busy.  Since my last post from 2012, (Yikes!  really sorry!) We had Lillian June Shoop, born July 1st 2012!  She has been the light of our lives, and I wouldn't know how life would be like from that moment on.    She has been my greatest masterpiece yet, and Cyndi and I have never looked back.  She has been a true joy in our lives, and thankfully taking after her dad as joining into the geek culture!  hehehehe
Lily as Supergirl Princess
     I used this costume as an ice breaker to meet Dan Jurgens at NC Comic Con 2013, who I sat next to for 2 days, and unfortunately never built up the courage to speak to one of my heroes until Lily showed up.  I had been burned by heroes of mine in the comics industry before, and didn't want to be let down by another, but Dan was one of the nicest people I ever met!  I told him that Lily was my icebreaker, he said "Icebreaker?  She's a deal Maker!  and proceeded to talk for a good half hour.  It was great to know not all of my heroes are dead.   It does make for a great story with Lily.  Hopefully she will appreciate it one day, but for now, if it isn't Octonauts, she doesn't care.  HA!  

As to what I have been doing since the last post job wise, I did a few things since then.  I worked on a game for the iPad with HeroClix called the Tab App game.  Using both Marvel and DC characters, I had to draw their story lines for the in-between scenes of each level.  It was my first time doing full color anything in comics, always just a penciller.  It was a test for sure for future things to come.  Anyways, in the game each character had a figure that you would put on the screen of the iPad, and the game could recognize which character it was and play the game according to the figure.  it was a pretty cool idea.  Unfortunately, i didn't get to draw the characters the way I wanted to draw them, but I still got to draw them, from Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, to Captain America and Thor.  I was thankful for the opportunity.
New 52 Batman

Mr. Freeze and Bats

Thor vs. Loki

Loki no likey...
Doth hast any Meade?

Then came along Dan Jolley...

FCBD 2014
    I have known Dan for quite a few years, we met  in Philly at Wizard World, when Wizard was a good show.   He was signing for Firestorm at the time, and I had done some sample pages of a script he had written that a mutual friend had given me to work on.  I went to talk to Dan, and from there we became friends.  We had always wanted to work on something together but we always had something going on, until finally we both had the time to work on something.  And that something was LARP!, a graphic novel of 88 pages.  Now as I had mentioned earlier about the HeroClix game, I had only done pencils for any book I ever worked on.  Going through art school, I always said, I will just be a penciller, for I am a slow inker, and colors are too involved.  I just want to draw.  HA!  Not on this project, once Dark Horse gave us the green light I was asked to do all pencils, inks and gray tones!  Who was I to say no, "I can do that" I said!  Gracious, once I really dove in, it was a bit daunting. With trial and error of what worked and what didn't, I think I gained 500 experience points to level up for the next one!  What I am really proud to say is, I did that, ALL of it!  from concept to final art, I did it, while changing diapers, to cooking breakfast, lunch and dinner, to potty training, to bedtime with Lily, to moving 4 times within a year from NC to Texas, I did it.  And I will have the book to show all the blood, sweat and tears, but also memories of what I was doing when I was working on such and such page.  A big THANK YOU to Dan for letting me be a part of it as a co creator.   If anything, I am pleased and thankful of Dark Horse especially my editor Brendan Wright, for being helpful and patient with me through all this.  I can now say in confidence going forward, "I can Do that!" and it be true!  I can't forget to give props to Shawn DeLoache, Dan's writing partner, for being my cheerleader when things were getting a bit daunting and Brendan or Dan wasn't available at that time.  It definitely has been a ride, and can't wait to do more with it!  It is pretty great to be able to finally talk about it now that it will be out this summer!  So I will end this blog until next time with a few images showing my process of the book.  I promise, I will try to be more frequent with this blog!  Until next time, Hakuna Matata!

Original thumbnail to the cover

then to pencils
to inks and colors
                     To final cover

Monday, March 19, 2012

Kicking it into gear!

Hey Everybody!

Sorry for a delay in blogging, I was surprised with a vacation to the Bahamas!  As you can tell, I didn't really think about blogging until I got back. My wife surprised me with the trip, I had no idea!  I thought we were going to dinner, it wasn't until we pulled up to the airport and I got out seeing packed bags that I caught on!  I don't know if that is a good thing, or a bad thing if that happened again!  I apparently could be kidnapped without knowing!  LOL  When we got to the Carnival cruise, at Port Canaveral was when everything clicked!  So our adventure started at 4pm, but being that it was a long day of traveling, we decided to take a nap.  When we got up to go to dinner, Cyndi stated she wasn't feeling well, me, thinking that she was hungry because she always says she doesn't feel good when she is hungry, I didn't put 2 and 2 together that she was getting seasick.  And the combination of being pregnant was a recipe for disaster since she can't really take anything for it!  As we proceeded to Deck 10 to get to the dining area, Cyndi blurted out that she needed to go outside, and out she went, over the railing!  And stayed there for about an hour and a half!  Poor girl, she finally said she had a small window to get from Deck 9 to Deck 4 to our room before she had another episode of vomiting!  I ran ahead of her to open our cabin door, and right to the waste basket she went!  I ordered 6 grilled cheeses and pretzels and lots of ginger ale for her to have something to throw up.  She threw up until she passed out of exhaustion.  When we woke up we were about to dock in Nassau, so we decided to stay there for the rest of our vacation.  But we did enjoy the boat while it was docked until it was time for them to leave so it wasn't a complete waste.  When we finally got off, was when our real vacation started.  It was a great place of rest and relaxation, we truly did enjoy ourselves!  And I truly enjoyed the Guava Puffs, man were those delicious!  I must find the recipe and try my hand at it.

But I am here now, and with a few sketches to share with you guys!  I have been still plugging along on my concepting portfolio and applying to every job that opens up in the video game industry.  But I was told that it could take a while before hearing back from anyone, they say it is a slow process.  What is an artist to do to pay bills?  Find other avenues, Trading cards for one, I had been asked to participate in the Walking Dead trading card set that is coming out, and also the DC: New 52 trading card set.  That should keep me busy for a little while, so that's good.  Easy money, and getting artist proofs to sell can double my pay.  So that will be good.  I also have something in the works that I have been working the old noggin with a friend of mine as a collaboration.  More on that in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for that!  Especially you South Hill natives, you definitely will get a kick out of the idea!  In the mean time, here are a few sketches for you guys!
Goblin concept click to enlarge

Angel concept click to enlarge

For fun!  HAHAHA

Alright you guys, I promise to post more!  See you guys in the funny papers!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Putting a "The" on everything..

Hey everybody!

Blogging time again, Oscar night has passed, and all I can think of is there are a lot of movies with The in the title.  The Help, The Artist, The Iron Lady, A Separation didn't have a chance, there was no The!
Even announcing presenters were with a The, The Angelina Jolie, which she certainly looked like a The, the thing!  She needs to eat something badly!  Showing off leg with the dress she was wearing did not help her case!  Brad Pitt made a bad choice, at least Jennifer Anniston looks healthy!  The Brad Pitt, and The Jennifer Anniston, I mean.  But it was great seeing Billy Crystal up there again, took me back when I watched the awards with my mom and dad, ahh, good times.  People can complain all they want on his performance, but he is a showman.  Compared to last year's abomination with Ann Hathaway and James Franco, who looked like he was on a high the whole time, give me Billy!  I enjoy the movie shorts, and the subliminal inserts of the Princess Bride strewn about the awards show.  Billy Crystal, THE Oscar Host!  As for the movies nominated, I will watch them eventually, but nothing really grabbed me.  The Help I did, see, and enjoyed thoroughly, Hugo I wanted to see, and Warhorse. As for the other nominations, that is where they create the ploy, to get to go see the movie, because The Iron Lady just came out, or was in select theaters to where not everyone can go see it.  The Academy, all the actors, have access in seeing these movies, not the general public.  It is this, that I am not keen about.  It used to be that everyone saw these movies, and everyone knew what was good enough to get an Oscar,(American Beauty, surely was not one of them, but what do I know).  NOw, when they make the announcements of Oscar nominations, you are like, "Huh?  I have never heard of that movie!"  But once it has won Best picture, and Best actor, Best actress, then you HAVE to see it, to see what all the hubbub is about!  That is just my opinion on the whole thing, do what you like. Opinions are like armpits, you usually have two of them,(unless there was a freak accident, and you only have one arm),  there is one of that might be ok, but the other one probably stinks more.

I have been a bit busy with applying to jobs this past week that I didn't really have the chance to post a blog until now.  Applying to jobs is a job in itself!  I think it takes at least 45 minutes to apply to each one!  Having to go through page after page of personal information as well as regurgitate your resume and cover letter is quite the chore.  But I have gotten the hang of it now, hopefully will hear back soon.  I hate the feeling of not having work to do except adding to the portfolio.  But it is the journey I have decided to take for my unborn child and I WILL succeed as I did in my comics career.  With hard work and perseverance I shall overcome with God willing.

My Wolverine pose!  hehehe
Another milestone in my life was taking the plunge, Baptism that is!  I had decided to take the next step in my path with God by getting baptized with my wife.  I had grown up Christian all my life, but never was baptized, by choice, only as a baby.  I had decided to change that with everything that has been happening in our lives that God has done, and he has definitely made a grand appearance there!  I wanted to reaffirm my faith in him and show him that I was giving myself to him.  And it was a celebratory day to do it, since it fell on my Dad's birthday.  I wore my Windmill shirt that my wife Cyndi gave me in remembrance of him.  I truly did and still do feel different when I came out of the water like Wolverine did in Origins.   But it wasn't adamantium coarsing through every fiber of my being, but the Holy Spirit, and I welcomed it!  We do love the church that we are in, they accept all who are there, and they are people like me, creatives!  I just feel at home with them, and I thank them for letting us be a part of them.   It's funny, I have had friends of mine ask me if they are supposed to act different around me now that I have been baptized, I say no, act how you want, I wouldn't put myself around people who are of bad influence if they did.  But it has opened up to conversations that I never really talked about in the past, religion, faith and the belief in God.  I think that is a win for God, and for myself, and I am thankful.

Samson kicks ass!  Literally! Click to Enlarge
Who knew this was going to get religious on you guys, but hey, I'm not shy about it anymore, God is there for me, and He is there for you, you just have to take that first step!  Now, since I have brought up religion on an art blog, I sketched out a piece yesterday after the message at church, and got inspired to do a digital painting of Samson!  I love that story, superhuman to the max, who wouldn't?!  But I had this image stuck in my head after listening to it, and I had to put it down on paper first.  So here is the rough sketch to jot the idea down, before I go digital on it!  I will hope to post the final image next blog, it should be a lot of fun!

I will also post the commission I did a little while ago of my interpretation of Isaiah 6:
Isaiah 6:3  They were calling out to each other, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven's Armies!  The whole earth is filled with his glory!"
Click to Enlarge

I wanted to show you guys also, this past Sunday we showed a video for the intro to the sermon called Leverage.  I was asked to concept a Rube Goldberg Machine for this said video.  Who knew I could blueprint something like this and actually see it work!  So for those who missed it, here is the blueprint, and the video!

Click to Enlarge

I am going to leave you now after giving you the lowdown of my goings on with an Alien attack on a space station!  I know right, you were all, Whoa!  I didn't even see that coming from all the Baptism and Angels and God business!  So here it is!  Enjoy!
"I said Thai food, not Tie Fighter!"
Click to Enlarge

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Wherever I may roam

Hey Everybody!

It's Howdy Doody time!  It's not, I kid, it is just my time to show you more art again.  It's Shoopy time, that's better!  Anyways, this week I have been super busy applying to jobs in video games.  Whoever is hiring for concept artists, and I mean anywhere!  I even applied to companies in Canada, Poland, and Singapore!  I guess Lily can be trilingual.  Wherever God wants me to be, that's where we will go.  Good thing my wife can transfer anywhere that has an airport!

So not only am I roaming the job websites to domestic and international jobs, also computer programs.  I am trying to make myself more proficient in all the programs that I own.  From Photoshop, to Painter, to Manga Studio.  I want to be as good as I can be for any job I take on.  So I will show you some work in progresses from each program.
A sketch I did in Sketchbook Pro that I turned into this...

in Photoshop

here is the one I started on last week in Photoshop, that I made into more of a speed painting.  Probably will tweak it up later.

This was a sketch I did in Painter 11, messing around with some of the tools to get used to them.  Possibly will be my weapon of choice as I get more proficient in it.

this piece was done in Manga Studio Ex 4, all digital!  Pencils, inks and ZIP!

Well Folks, that is it for today!  I am off to customize some brushes in Painter!  I will show you guys the results next time!

Until next time, see you in the funny papers!