Friday, March 18, 2011


Wanted to show why Neil and I didn't work together for almost ten years...
I used to pencil pretty tightly. Not my nature; this page is probably my third revision.

I thank/blame Mark A Nelson for that; My college professor shared this influence with the Image wave and sowed a mistrust of "inkers" instead of the trusting symbiosis of "finishers". Of course, I bear the ultimate responsibility and I gotta tell you, I'm a happier penciler when I work loose.

I know that's not why I didn't get the job though. Sometimes I just don't fini

Thursday, March 17, 2011


From an idea Greg Sarns had in the late 1990's...

neon green gellyroller on 80 pound bond...
12 years & 4 hours later

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Personally I disagree. I had a blast on my paper route and have dozens of stories.

The video I am helping you skip seems like a paid advertisement. Watch it if you want by clicking the title above.

But she's right, in that kids cannot relate to paper route stories. Routes are so big now that there's no way a kid could do it. Too bad.

Here's the stuff I thought was useful...

  • Think about your competition, and if there's somebody else out there doing something similar. How is your idea different from that?
  • Think about sales outlets... what kind of channel would you expect to see this on? 
  • Think about your audience. As creators we often are so absorbed in our creations that we forget what it's like to see it for the first time.
  • Get feedback, as much as possible... then follow up on the questions and comments as you develop the idea. Pay attention to places you stumble or feel less than confident during your presentation; work on those!
  • Design it as an outline of your presentation, but not as the presentation itself. It's a tool to aid the presentation. Make it available as a nice leave-behind, but don't just leave it. Ask if they would like a PDF instead.
  • 10 pages total. Has to have good grammar and writing & a fun, easy read
    • Overview
      • 1-2 pgs w/art; logline, include episode length.
      • START AT THE BEGINNING; introduce characters, allude to tone of the world & the possible/impossibilities.
    • Character Descriptions
      • One paragraph per main character (5 tops); examples of action, not adjectives.
      • Be imaginative
      • Do we know characters like these? What's the twist?
      • Be selective
    • Episode Springboards
      • This makes it or breaks it...
      • mini-episode outlines; beginning, middle, and (especially) end. Add 3 tableaus of high spots.
      • uses all characters; here are the personality characteristics that got them into trouble, and here's how those traits will get them out of trouble.
      • 5-7 springboards.
    • Art
      • specific per section of show
      • must show emotion
      • must display the tone of the show
  • Do think cross-platform.
  • Do have personality, point-of-view, and Uniqueness
  • Do not assume that more is better (trailer, tons of sketches).
  • Do not include budgets, marketing, L&M.

Bottom line; you are always selling yourself as a professional, interesting, artistic, creative problem solver. No is not forever. You never know what's going on behind the scenes.

*sigh* I miss my paper route. :)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


A few days after attending the Creative Chicago Expo 2011 I got a nice email from Alyson, the Membership Director for Chicago Artists Coalition, with a great membership deal.

Now honestly, I had not heard of this organization before... then again, I somehow made it almost 10 years after college without knowing about the Graphic Artists Guild. So I may not be exactly cutting-edge. All the more reason to hook up with an organization that is putting on events (and giving away money! Cha-Ching!)

I'll definitely post about the CAC experiences as they come up... for now keep us in mind for our end-of-the-month Guild meeting at Thai Spoon in the Loop...


I didn't start this post as an ad, though. The title was actually me asking myself

"What ever happened to me as an artist?"

The more I blog, take graphic design jobs, and spend hours on Lynda training on YouTube and Soundbooth and Flash, the less time I am spending in Gouache, Watercolor, Pen & Ink. I hadn't realized it in my gut until I clicked onto the CAC site and was confronted with scads of what could only be described as "Art".

Not Design.

Not Illustration.

Luckily, the magic of the internet keeps me in touch with a few of my more productive cohorts from college.

Cat York
Tina Druce-Hoffman
Bethany Vanderputten
Neil Klemz

Thanks to y'all for reminding me to draw!

Now I just gotta get do it...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Building, from The Basics

Logo design is intriguing to me. Usually I'm working up a comic title or font and skimming through tons of old Letraset guides with tracing paper, working out the direction I like. But usually, I'm my own client...

I know, hardcore designers would probably NOT consider this logo design. It's a font, with a few tweaks. But The Clients are happy, and that makes me happy!