Saturday, December 29, 2007

Student Blogs

There are times when teaching is a real drag (duh) but I've got to tell you some students really make all the bad ones, and I've had some doozies, more than worthwhile. Please take some time to check out some of the students in SCAD's Sequential Art major in Atlanta! Their links are also found in the right column of this page. I'm sure there are more but these are the blogs I do know about. I'm proud of these guys.

Alex App
Cara McGee
Chris Schweizer
Darnell Johnson
Doug Dabbs
Olu Ajagbe

Friday, December 28, 2007

Joker color sketch

Taking a break from rebuilding three courses for winter quarter and colored a sketch I did in my sketchbook a few days ago. Like I previously posted, I'm very excited about Dark Knight!



UPDATE: Wow, can't believe Ledger died! Best wishes to his family.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Let's recap some old work.

Since I can't really share anything I've done lately I thought I'd post some older work I've added to my portfolio.

A few years ago Nike began a campaign called "The Lebrons". It's kinda cool to see the campaign has continued since it is rather entertaining and creative. That and I was the original retoucher on the campaign and it's satisfying to see it's blossomed further. The graphic below was done along with trading cards, in full color, as some of the first print for "The Lebrons" and can now be found in my portfolio under retouching.



It also amazes me to see these Nike Transformers booming across toy stores and online auctions. Why? Because I drew the initial concept art that sold the idea and made way for a Nike Lab commercial and then the full blown marketing cross-over for Optimus Prime (or Convoy if you're an uber-geek) and Megatron transformable Nike shoes. These are a bit old but these quick concept drawings for Marshall Faulk began it and can be found in my portfolio under comps.



Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Batman sketch

I've been rather excited about Dark Knight coming out later this year so I drew a quick sketch of Batman. He's not a common subject for me so it's interesting to see, even for me, what he looks like from my pencil. I really prefer the armor-clad version of Batman. It's more realistic than the spandex bs we've been asked to swallow for decades.



This holiday was alot of fun. I got to spend lots of time with my lady's family. They're good people! Hope everyone else had a wonderful Christmas and are looking forward to New Year's too!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Happy Holidays

This is about the only thing I can post, legally or otherwise, that I have done in the past month. While that is rather frustrating I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday no matter what holiday you celebrate!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

*cough*

Often I am asked, "What do your cats do while you are working hard at your drawing board?" The same thing they do all day, of course!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Nike, Riswold, and Collateral Material oh my!

Nike's "League of Champions" is taking off again and people have begun to take notice. Before it was a project so little Nike wasn't concerned about me posting the work. Well, now that it's a big project I've got to keep you all in the dark for a bit. Not to worry! It'll all be posted again! You'll just have to be patient for the official releases now. Currently, I'm working on Kobe Bryant's illustration which ought to be released in early 2008. Just got word today Kobe loves the concept and to continue with the direction we're headed. Always good to know the celebs are happy with what I'm doing for them.

A lesser known "celeb", but even more interesting than a Britney Spears/OJ Simpson love-child, is Jim Riswold; a living legend in advertising. I finished up a few designs to help him with his self-proclaimed "bad art" this week. His work is crazy, funny, and smart. Go here now and make sure your sound is on! But be forewarned! His theme-song (I kid you not) is catchy and his love of puns isn't only matched by his love for dictators.

Finally, I received my business cards in the mail today from 4by6.com! It's not the exact same design as I posted earlier in the year but close enough. The color is perfect! The satin finish gorgeous! They look absolutely fantastic and I couldn't have asked for better. Much thanks for Shawn Crystal for pointing me in their direction.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Maquette

I found some time this weekend to work on my maquette I began at the 24-Hour Art Challenge at SCAD-ATL awhile back. It wouldn't have taken so long but I redid the hood four times! I just wasn't happy with it and since there was no deadline I just kept at it until I was happy. Now it only needs part of the staff and one object on the belt completed. Neither can be put together until after it's baked so this is about done on the sculpting front. Not too bad considering I've not sculpted anything in... I honestly think it might have been when I was four! Long time! Next time I post this it'll be painted and complete.

This is the old turnaround my maquette is based off of. I liked the look of the hood for dramatic reasons better and changed to that on the sculpt.





This also marks the last week of Fall quarter. I can't wait to put all of my "job" energy into client work and finally get my house renovations completed.

Monday, October 29, 2007

A Year Later

A year+4 days ago I moved to ATL from Portland, OR (PDX). It was a major risk. I was on my way to make well over six figures and was getting steady work both in advertising and freelance illustration. I had more financial security than most people will know. Even my friends were the best of people. I was surrounded by lovely hearts and brilliant minds. But through it all, none of it was enough. So I left.

The dust has settled and you know what? Those friends are still my friends and still brilliant, lovely people! Plus, now I'm surrounded by new friends too! My job? The pay cut I took was worth the happiness I've gained. I'm not saying it's perfect. Oh, hell no. But I am happier here by far. I fit here. I was even able to afford a little home. My freelance life has blossomed and I could not ask for better clients. I'm living the dream!

But better yet? My lady. Never in another million years of dating in PDX would I have found a woman of her caliber, humor, intellect, and heart. (And she's a hot tamale to boot!) If having a wonderful career-life is "the dream" then I'm not sure how to express how fantastic she is since she eclipses all other happiness no matter how great they may seem. Dear lord, she even baked me cookies tonight!

Overall, moving here was the best thing I could have ever done. PDX was good to me but it was never home. I found home and my place in the world here in ATL.

Life is good.

"D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" completed

My short story for the 2008 SCAD Sequential Art anthology is complete! "D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" is about an archaeological "dig" in space where two scientists are given a glimpse of the galaxy by the very artifact they are studying and a hint as to what its true purpose is: a map. The problem is they have no hard evidence as to what they've seen except for their momentary disappearance. Will their story be believed? That's for the audience to say.

To see the story from the beginning in a new window from my Portfolio click here.

Friday, October 26, 2007

I'm a freakin' Patron Saint, yo!

Someone at my old office at Wieden+Kennedy has dubbed me the patron saint of permalance. But what the hell is "permalance" you ask? See below... and God bless you cuz I'm a freakin' patron saint now, you mothers! I wonder if that means I can charge a "holiness" fee?



I also "achieved" my own employee jacket! But for now, back to comic work for me.

Monday, October 22, 2007

SCAD ATL 24-Hour Art Challenge

Check out the video shot at last Friday/Saturday's 24-Hour Art Challenge here at the Atlanta campus of the Savannah College of Art and Design! Great work, all around!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

24-Hour Art Challenge

Last night was the 24-Hour Art Challenge at the Savannah College of Art and Design and it turned out to be a lot of fun and very educational! I wasn't able to attend until about 6pm on Friday (it ran from Friday 10am to Saturday 10am) so my 24-Hours was more like twelve, not including a couple of hours helping students. I took on the animation department's challenge and tried my hand at making a maquette. I've never done one before so it was rather hard at first. The armature was difficult to match to what you wanted the final product to look like. I believe my biggest mistake has been on the kneepads. The legs are proportional but due to the placement on the kneepads they appear skewed. I'll know better next time. Using sculpey turned out to be the easiest, but most time consuming, part of the maquette. I plan on finishing it this December once Fall quarter is over. Take a look at where twelve hours left me on the project! It's the main character from my "8th Day" storyline... or will be.


Monday, September 24, 2007

"D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" inks five

This was the weekend I did not want to end. Tomorrow is going to feel like Monday^3. I didn't get to spend as much time with my lady as I wanted (though we got sushi tonight mmmmmm) but I was sooo productive otherwise! The only things I didn't get done were cleaning up the flower bed in front of my place and making duplicates of my office key for coworkers in my department. Not too bad! My place hasn't been this clean in a month and I was able to get two pages of inks done on top of everything else. That means only one page of inks to go and I'll be ready to send my pages in for the SCAD 2008 anthology!


Sunday, September 23, 2007

"D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" inks four

I'm trying to take advantage of the weekend since I'm free to do whatever I need and get some inks done for the SCAD 2008 Anthology. It's due just before Halloween so the sooner it's complete, the better. After some thought I will be changing the title back to the original: "Do You Think They'll Believe Us?" It just has a more human feel to it which the story needs.



Otherwise, I gotta say having 55 students is tough. That is a hell, a hell, of alot of grading! And I've been feeling the need to just hang out. Working full-time teaching, doing illustration work on the side, and wanting to spend as much time as possible with my lady has left me with a very little social circle here. That's the only part of my move that has been tough.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Nike LT

The past couple of weeks have been tough but I've still managed to get some work done. The latest Nike illustration for "The League of Champions" was approved this morning. It features LT, who is probably my favorite of the athletes I have worked on so far. Since I make sure the Photoshop file is editable if Nike has changes, I leave almost everything on its own layer and, well, it's the largest LoC file yet: 1.88GBs! LT had alot of extras in it when colored. I'm hoping Nike is a little slow on gathering information for Kobe so I can finish up the pages for the SCAD Anthology. This weekend I am going to be so busy my head is already spinning. Anyway, here's what's been keeping me so very busy as of late. Enjoy some LT goodness!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Kobe Bryant

Get this: Kobe Bryant was disappointed when he was told I wouldn't be drawing a Nike: League of Champions poster for him this Fall. Let's recap. Kobe Bryant, yes, the basketball player, is disappointed I, me, Nolan, wouldn't be drawing a poster of him. He loves what he has seen for the other athletes. Kick ass! Guess he'll be super surprised and happy we're doing one for him through Footlocker instead. Shhhh! Don't tell him!

Ok, back to coloring LT's poster.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

"D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" inks three

I've had a good run of inks on this project but it's going to need to sit for awhile now. Nike got back to me on the latest illustration and gave me the green light! So I'll be focused on that for the next week and a half. The only exception being this weekend I'm going to focus on the concept B Clay Moore and myself are working on. Ought to be fun!

Here's page three! I really like how he is floating in the center of the page completely alone and isolated.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

"D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" inks two

Here's page two for my antho story. My lady thinks the new title makes it sound like a cheesy romance novel so I may have to rethink my rethinking. Again, the stars are done digitally. No point in wasting so much time and ink with frisket doing it when I can do better in Photoshop in five minutes. Gotta love my large format Epson 1640XL scanner! I love my home studio.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

"D'You Think They'll Believe Us?" inks one

After some thought, the title really stopped working for me. I've renamed my short for the SCAD Anthology simply "D'You Think They'll Believe Us?". Here are the final inks! Space and stars are actually digitally done. It was too much ink to lay down and I hate frisket. Besides, I have complete control over the number of star, their density, and size in Photoshop. I'm rather happy with the way it turned out!


Sunday, August 19, 2007

Space Ghost

I've been feeling like crap all night (might be a pun in there) yet I'm not tired in the slightest. So I checked out a forum Shawn had told me about awhile ago. He's been doing these great sketches of Toth characters and when I saw the official thread on the Image Comics Forums I figured it would be a nice distraction from Nike.

If you can't view this PNG below then here's a JPG for you.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

ORIGINAL DESIGN GANGSTA

Shawn sent this to me earlier today and I forward it on to my W+K buds. Hi-larry-ous! And, yes, I do sorta look like him. Deal.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Retouching is Destroying Women

And giving men an unrealistic view of them too. Been meaning to post this for awhile and thought I should do so before I forgot again.

So many times when I did retouching I was asked to fix little imperfections on people who didn't need it. Beauty is the state of BEING HAPPY WITH WHO YOU ARE not having your image artificially altered by some computer geek sitting in the dark (retouchers, you know who you are). You know how Hollywood is. Thinner thinner thinner... blah. Sure, heavy isn't attractive but heavy is also unhealthy. Unhealthy is what should be unattractive! There is nothing wrong with a beautiful woman who is at a healthy size. And by healthy I mean in-health and not as a nice word for fat. Fat is unhealthy. Focus on health! And more often that not it's the celebrity or athlete that asks for the retouching. Their egos must be sated. Their images must be solidified. Napoleons. All of them.

Then there's advertising. Tighter, smaller, thinner, more glowie! It's bullshit. The average person knows this logically but when did that ever matter? The average teen girl gets sucked into the mindset that people actually look the way their promotional photos do. I randomly came across some lame TV show called Makeover America or something rather. They were going over the ten top ways celebrities get in shape. Do you know what was their "secret weapon"? Retouching! I love doing the work. I love color correcting. I love making something more visually appealing. But retouching has gotten out of hand when it comes to portraying people.

Let's take Faith Hill as an example. She is stunning as is! Sure, she's not a young chick anymore but whoopty effin do. There are some wrinkles and age has begun to show but consider it a patina on a beautiful piece of art not something to be shunned. We need to change our mindsets when it comes to beauty. Paris Hilton-types can bite me. Anyway, my girlfriend showed me this. It made me sick. Click on the image to be sent to a "distort by the numbers" guide to how they altered the photo.



Here's an example I've known about for a few years. It's a campaign about what I'm writing. I hope you have Flash installed because it's a nice little presentation. Click on the image to view.



Life is too short not to be happy with who we are. Be healthy. Be happy. There's more to life than a size zero.

End Rant.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Fear Agent

Shawn Crystal found out Dark Horse Comics was in need of a last minute colorist so I jumped on it. Chris Samnee did the pencils and inks. This'll be the back cover to "Fear Agent" #2 out in July!

Monday, June 4, 2007

Batman B&W

I just finished teaching a course on Computer Coloring for Comics at the Savannah College of Art and Design's Atlanta Campus. One of the assignments was to have students color two pages of Kevin Nowlan's contribution to "Batman B&W". Well, I decided to do the assignment with them if nothing else but to have another sample to critique on the due date and kick a little ass. Here are those pages.


Sunday, April 22, 2007

Long time, no post.

I've been extremely busy lately between family, commercial contracts, and teaching. This weekend has been the first I've had free in two months. It's been a wonderful weekend spent in the company of my lovely girlfriend. I indoctrinated her to comic book conventions and went to the Atlanta Comic Expo. Thankfully, it was a small event and it didn't completely scare her off going to other conventions in the future. heh

Though I do not have any recent comic work, I do have some commercial work to post. These were made for Target's latest catalog but are not the final versions being used. The final versions are completely flat to allow the product photos (not seen) to "pop" off the page more. What you see below is a previous version using cuts and gradients to express volume and depth. The volume competed with the product photos but as stand-alone pieces without products I believe the versions below are more interesting.


In the final she has pigtails with cellphones flying around her.


In the final there is simply a star burst, almost exactly like the one below, and a ton of household cleaning supplies floating around him.


This actually is the final minus the Target credit card composed into the blank field. It's the only one with cuts that made it to the finals.

I am hoping in the coming weeks as spring quarter in my teaching career levels off, which has turned out rather well, I'll find time to work on my personal comic projects. Look for posts of that in the coming month!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Site Design and Business Card

While the code is more or less unchanged, I've updated the design of my website. Now you can see other places beyond my résumé I am finding to use my new letterhead. It's alot more of "me" than even I am really comfortable with but I think it works nicely. Minus the contact info, since I won't post that online, the business card looks like this :



The hand kinda bothers me. I may remove it and crop my head a different way. I've got time to play with it so no rush. This is a good draft. Once completed, most likely I'll just get these printed at Kinkos to start. I don't need that many so a small run is fine.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Business Cards and Letterhead

I need to bill two clients and I have no professional (or even personalized) letterhead for an invoice to do so. I need business cards for freelancing too. Well, I am teaching a self-promotion class this spring so I'm making both for actual use and as an example in class! Here are the sketches for each. Right now I am redrawing them in Illustrator so they are super clean and can be re-purposed. They just need copy and some design work done. I'll post them when complete!



Friday, March 9, 2007

Nike: League of Champions

What has kept me so busy lately? Nike! These are two of the latest posters I have done for them. These are also posted in my Portfolio > Illustration section.


Testing

Here we are. Testing out Blogger on my website. The XML syntax is just different enough from HTML to cause me problems but I'm getting it.

 
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