Archive for the ‘Art’ Category
With moustachioed lips pulled back from yellowed teeth, a surly old troll snarls at each and every viewer who catches a glimpse of his ugly mug. A green-faced fortune-teller gazes into a crystal ball, reading the uncertain futures of any and all passers-by. A tormented soul partially enshrouded in blackness wails behind crimson bars. These and other colourfully strange images can be seen in Cartoons by Cartwright.
When he isn’t pummelling himself in the head with a frozen mackerel or drooling on tavern napkins, Steve Cartwright is creating his unique brand of cartoon art. A freelance artist, illustrator, and cartoonist working out of Atlanta, Steve has composed works for a variety of venues, including newspapers, magazines, websites, and books. He received the 2004 James Award for his Champagne Shivers cover art. In addition to his for-profit ventures, Steve also works pro bono for various animal rescue groups. From time to time, he’s even been known to scribble on those aforementioned tavern napkins (hopefully before they become too soaked in drool).
More of Steve’s work can be seen here:
Be terrified by a gore-stained lycanthrope. Be enthralled by the dangerous allure of a forest dryad. Face the ferocious menace of warg riders. Spy grim dwarfs prepared for battle. Find yourself wandering worlds of wonder and peril in the fantastic art of Andres Canals.
The art of Andres Canals is fantastic in more ways than one. Not only is Andres interested in many fantastic genres, such as urban fantasy, high fantasy, post-apocalypse, and cyberpunk, but the moods and the details in his artworks are fantastic as well. His wargs and their riders wear savage looks in a composition that deftly depicts their ferocity. His mummified guardian exudes ageless menace as she stands before an appropriately dark and mysterious passageway. Whether it is the flowers at a dryad’s feet, or the carvings on a dwarf’s shield, the finer details of Andres’s works pull the viewer deeper into his visions of fantasy and horror.
Based in the United Kingdom, Andres studied art in Dorset and Wales prior to beginning work as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer. While he is certainly inspired by modern artists such as Alan Lee and Syd Mead, Andres finds there is also much to learn from past masters such as Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci. Nature, travel, film, comics, fashion, and photography all serve as additional inspiration for his artistic creations.
Combining traditional and digital media, Andres draws pencil sketches that he then scans and paints digitally. His work has illustrated magazines, adorned role playing games, and seen use as concept art for miniatures.
More of Andres’s art can be found here:
Thomas Bonvillain attended Davidson Fine Arts in Augusta, GA while in high school. He later attended Augusta State University majoring in Fine Arts, before taking a break from college to learn more on illustration. He moved to NJ where he graduated the Joe Kubert School in 2009. Since he as worked contributing colors on several pages for comics, like Black Dawn, Blood Work, and Hexxen Hammers. His own work has a dark style all it’s own.
When did you first take an interest in art?
Hmm, that’s hard to say exactly. I’ve loved to draw for as long as I can remember, I don’t know that I can say where it started for certain. I had my first serious art class when I was in 3rd or 4th grade I think, and I would always take classes when they were available at school. In high school, I tried out for Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School in Augusta, GA and started there my sophomore year. That was great, each year I had more and more art classes. In my senior year, I think half of my classes were art courses.
What did you like to draw most as a child?
I guess that depends on my age at the time. In elementary school, I did a lot of really weird comics that I drew on line paper. They weren’t even superhero things, though… they were just odd comics about Super Mario Bros. and other random things. In middle school I started doing more superhero type drawings and characters, but also started to do more dark drawings. Demons, monsters, stuff like that. By high school, it was a pretty even mix of superhero comic stuff, and really gruesome, gory drawings… I used to show them all proudly to my parents, and, oddly enough, they never seem put off by it.
Are you originally from Georgia? Do you ever miss the South living in Jersey?
My dad was in the army, so I was born in Germany, but spent most of my life in Georgia until moving to Jersey. There are definitely things that I miss, but it’s a bit of give and take. I miss the less frigid winters, but the summer is murder. I miss the open spaces and breathing room, but then you have to drive further to find anything worth doing. For every thing I miss, it seems something else makes up for it. I suppose the only thing I really miss are my friends and immediate family that still live in the area. I try to get back at least twice a year, but it’s a big change from seeing them almost every day.
What was it like to train at the Joe Kubert school?
Intense. I loved it. I’ve never drawn so much in my entire life as I did at that school. I feel like I improved so much just from the sheer amount of work that we had to do. It pushed me to do so many things that I might have been afraid or too lazy to try on my own. I also really enjoyed the company of the other students, and having other people into the same things as myself really helped drive me forward. It was also interesting to have Adam and Andy Kubert as teachers, since I grew up on their X-Men work from the 90s. All the teachers were great, but they were the artists that I was most familiar with as a kid.
Do you have any advice to the artists of tomorrow?
I don’t know? I’m sure there are better people for them to ask that question of than me, ha. I don’t know that I have anything particularly insightful to tell anyone. Just keep drawing and learning. Some people, myself included, benefit from going to school, but others do just fine being self taught. Do whatever works for you, but either way you just have to keep at it.
You work on independent comics, which comic characters are your favorites? What other comic artists do you look up to?
I’ve only worked on a few smaller projects so far, but I’m still a fan of a lot of Marvel stuff, and DC to a lesser extent. I guess Spiderman would have to be my favorite character. I liked that, usually at least, they don’t take things too seriously with his stories, and even the 60s stuff holds up pretty well, in my opinion. I also like Batman, but I’m more a fan of the character than the comics. I think I will always view him as he appeared in the animated series. To me, Kevin Conroy is Batman. But hey, I even like the cheesy, 60s series. Some people seem to hate it for not taking the character seriously enough… but he’s a guy who dresses up like a bat and punches people. I think if you try to take any of these characters too seriously, it ends up seeming sillier than if you acknowledge the inherent ridiculousness of the idea. Anyway, I just see that series as a different take on Batman, and I like it for what it is.
As far as artists… I’m all over the place. In comics, my two biggest influences as a kid were probably Greg Capullo and Joe Madureira, who couldn’t be more different. I would kind of fluctuate between the super detailed, bendy characters that Capullo drew, and Madureira’s cleaner, anime influenced style at the time. It was a weird balancing act, and I would tip back and forth a lot. Currently, I still like a pretty wide variety of comic artists. Berni Wrightson, John Romita Jr., Stuart Immonen, Tony Moore, Goran Parlov, Ashley Wood, Eduardo Risso, and plenty of others I’m sure to forget.
Do you enjoying working to color the independent comics? Does it remind you of coloring as a kid?
Ha, well I do enjoy it, but no, it doesn’t remind me at all of coloring as a kid. It’s a lot more technical, so it’s not as simple as sitting down and just going at it with crayons. I don’t know that I really even colored in coloring books that much as a kid. I got into colored pencils for a while, and that might have influenced me a bit, but the process doesn’t really bring back those same feelings.
As far as coloring comics, I do really enjoy it. Flatting is pretty tedious, and can take a while. You’re basically setting up the lineart with flat colors, but you have to meticulously trace and separate all the different areas of color. But once that’s out of the way, the coloring is really great. A lot of times, this doesn’t even take as long as doing the flats! I really like experimenting with different color interactions. It’s also a different process depending on the style of lineart. Sometimes you don’t do a lot of rendering with the more graphic lineart, and then there’s the really open, linear stuff that requires more from the colorist. It’s a nice break from illustration sometimes, although I’d like to do more of that as well.
What is it like to have your work featured at the Spiderwebart Gallery?
It’s very cool. I’ve been familiar with Greg Hildebrandt’s stuff since I was young, probably first with the Marvel cards he did with his brother Tim in the 90s. I also saw a lot of their illustrations on Magic cards, back when I was really into the game. Anyway, it’s pretty great now to have some of my work alongside theirs, as well as the other artists on the site. Hopefully, sometime soon, I can do more.
Your work has a rather dark styling. Why do you think people ingeneral tend to like the darker elements?
I’m not really sure why, even speaking just for myself. I grew up with this kind of stuff, and I’ve just always had sort of an affinity for it. As a kid, I probably took it way too seriously. Even a lot of comics at the time were trying so hard to be dark and edgy, but looking back on it, it seems so ridiculous. I think it had a big influence on me as a kid and as a teenager, along with a lot of horror movies. So, I did all this gruesome and dark stuff, and now it seems so over the top. I still like dark and sometimes even gory stuff, but I try to play up the craziness of it now. When I was younger, I took things to such an extreme in order to be dark, that it stopped being disturbing, and it started being funny. I guess I’m still trying to do the same thing, except now that I’m aware that it’s kind of stupid, and I like that, and try to play it up when I can. Also, I never really liked drawing pretty things. For some reason, it was always so much more fun to draw something, weird, crazy, and ugly. That kind of stuff just lends itself so much better to dark subject matter.
Since this a horror/sci fi/dark fiction publication, are you yourself a fan of the horror/sci fi genre? What are your favorite horror and sci fi flicks?
Oh god, yes… More horror than scifi, but I enjoy both. Horror is, hands down, my favorite movie genre. There are so many to list, that I don’t even know how to approach this question.
So, my biggest influences are mostly 80s horror. John Carpenter’s The Thing, The Fly, The Blob, were great for their gore and makeup effects, as well as enjoyable movies. I think those three heavily influence my attraction to drawing weird, distorted monsters. Funny how all three were remakes. There were also so many movies from this time that were just gory, silly, and crazy with a sense of humor about themselves like Return of the Living Dead, ReAnimator, Evil Dead 2, Little Shop of Horrors, Gremlins, and Dead Alive/Braindead (90s, but still). Some others, from various times, that I’m a big fan of would be the original versions of Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead, George Romero’s Martin, Alien and Aliens, Nightmare on Elm Street, Pet Semetary, and Silence of the Lambs. There’s way too many horrible, B movies from that time to mention, but stuff like The Toxic Avenger, the Basket Case movies, Troll, and the prize jewel of bad movies: Troll 2.
There’s also some more current horror movies that I enjoy. I really liked Slither because it seemed like such a throwback to those 80s horror movies that I enjoyed. Shaun of the Dead, 28 Days Later, Frailty, and The Devil’s Rejects I enjoyed quite a bit. A movie not many people seemed to have seen that I really like was Leslie Vernon: Behind the Mask. About 2/3 of the movie is filmed documentary style following a typical horror movie slasher styling himself after Jason, Freddy, etc, except he’s basically just a normal, likeable guy. He shows the filmmakers exactly how he does all the unexplainable, or illogical, things that happen in slasher movies, and it’s a great satire of that subgenre of horror movies.
I also have to give Robocop it’s own mention. I keep thinking back to this movie as I answered these questions. It just exemplifies so much of what I was trying to say about taking gore or violence to an extreme, until it becomes almost funny. It walks the line so perfectly between satire and serious action/scifi. It even touches a bit on the body horror theme in a lot of the other movies I mentioned with Murphy’s transformation into a monster/machine. They took what sounds like a stupid idea on paper, and made this great movie that takes itself just seriously enough to work, but retains a sense of humor.
I am almost certain I’m forgetting other movies I love, but I should shut up now.
On your own personal projects, what do you hope to bring your fans next?
Oh, I have fans!?! To those two of you out there, I’d love to do more coloring work on some bigger projects. I have enjoyed working on everything I’ve done so far, but I’d like to reach a larger audience with my work.
I also want to move onto doing some published illustration work of my own. Right now, I’m thinking along the lines of drawings or digitally painted horror/fantasy themed work. I just have to figure out where my work would be a good fit. As far as comic art, that’s more of a wait and see thing. I enjoy superhero stuff, but I don’t know how interested I would be in drawing it myself. I’d prefer to work on something more offbeat, or horror/fantasy related. I’m kind of interested in working on my own ideas in comic form, but I don’t know how much of a writer I am.
Where would you like to see your career go?
As I mentioned, I’d like to do more coloring work. It’d be great to do work for some of the larger comic publishers. I’d like to get more into illustration, either for illustrated books, and maybe comics at some point. I’m pretty open to many different paths right now.
Anything to say before you go?
I think that about covers it. Thanks so much for taking an interest in my work.
Cathy Miller Burgoyne, a freelance Alaskan artist working in both digital and traditional media, composes both sci-fi imagery and illustrations of horror. Fans of the fantastic may catch sight of far-off planets and spy traces of beings from beyond our world in Cathy’s Polaria Series. Lovers of horror may glimpse surreal scenes of terror and witness ghostly manifestations in her Polar Twilight Series. Some of Cathy’s art begs the viewer to take more than one look. Look again, and you may see something you didn’t see before!
In addition to sci-fi and horror imagery, Cathy’s artwork also features images of animals (Polar Bear Garden) and arctic landscapes (Walrussia). More of Cathy’s work can be found here:
A graduate of Kanazawa College of Art in Japan, Kinuko Y. Craft came to the United States to continue her study of Art at the School of Art Institute of Chicago in the early sixties. Her work has graced publications like Playboy, Time, and The New York Times Magazine to name a few. And on books by Stephen King, Isaac Asimov, C.S. Lewis, Tanith Lee and Andre Norton. Kinuko has works in the permanent collections of The National Geographic Society, The National Portrait Gallery at The Smithsonian, The Cornish Colony Museum in Windsor, VT,and The Museum of American Illustration, New York City. Craft’s work has gained her numerous awards in her field. Her works appear on countless licensed products. Influenced by the works of Leonardo Da Vinci, the Pre-Raphaelites and Symbolist painters, she is without a doubt one the best and most well known fantasy artists of the day. Her works offer serene comfort and remind people to take time to appreciate the beauty in all things.
What was it like growing up in Japan?
I walked to school every day so I could feel the seasons change. The only “violence” I knew was fighting with my siblings by pulling their hair or throwing sticks at each other. Small town life in Japan was peaceful, safe and the streets were always filled with people walking. Almost no one had cars. We all rode the train or a bus when we had to go to the next town.
Did you always have a love of art? What led you to pursue a career in the field?
My grandfather was an art lover and a master calligrapher. He had a collection of books on Western Art. They fascinated me and I poured over their pages endlessly. He also had a print by Maxfield Parish called “Stars” which I fell in love with. I painted and drew when ever I could and even stole my sisters set of Craypas once while she was in school and painted a mural on a sliding door in the living room when nobody was there.
What was going through your mind your first day in the United States?
I arrived by passenger ship in San Francisco in January of 1964. That part was exciting and invigorating. The City was beautiful as I had expected. However the American Cultural Center in Kanazawa (The city where I went to Art School) had recommended that I take the bus from San Francisco to Chicago to better “See America.” The cold, bleak landscape, miserable food and the uncleanliness of the bus terminals were nothing like anything I had expected. There was and still is nothing like it in Japan that would have prepared me for the experience. It was terribly disappointing, but once I arrived in Chicago I knew I had made the right choice.
Did you ever think back then you would have become as successful as you have?
First of all, I don’t think I am successful. I don’t know what it is in my case. I only knew then that I wanted to paint and would let
nothing stand in my way to make that happen. Besides, I have never thought I have achieved anything bright artistically. All I can do is what I do. It’s like trying to climb to the top of a ladder that has no end.
A lot of your work has involved fairy tale/mythological themes. Were you always drawn to those things? Do you have a favorite story from either of those genres? Why do you think such tales are timeless in their appeal?
They are the culmination of human wishes, dreams and hope. I feel the imagination expressed in them is something we must have to go through life. As a pre-schooler, I always asked for anyone around to tell me stories. I heard folk tales, legends; and ghost stories so scary they made me afraid to go to the bathroom at night. After I started school and finally could read, I found a book titled “Greek Myth for Young Readers” in my father’s pile of old books. About the same time, a grade school friend loaned comic-book versions of the Iliad and the Odyssey. It opened me to a dreamworld I had never known. They have guided me into a world of literature and imagination which fuels my soul as an artist.
You have produced covers for such authors as Tanith Lee, Isaac Asimov, Stephen King, and Andre Norton. What is it like to see your work complement the works of such talented authors?
I don’t really think about it. I’m not into fame. They are all phenomenal writers who’s stories offer plenty of fodder for visual interpretation. Fortunately, I pretty much do what ever I like. So far none have complained, thankfully. They make wonderful reading in the bathtub.
What it is like to work with your husband Mahlon F. Craft and daughter Marie Charlotte Craft? Do you find yourself more inspired when working with your family?
Mahlon does everything I don’t. I paint, do the laundry and dishes and cook for our dog. Mahlon does everything else. We enjoy working together on books because we can collaborate as author/designer and artist. There are no bruised egos if I ask him to change a scene so it better fits what I want to paint. My daughter was coached by editors when writing Cupid and Psyche and King Midas and the Golden Touch. She has a degree from Columbia University in Literature. I hoped writing professionally might be something that would take on her, but it didn’t.
You have contributed to several children’s books. Do you enjoy that?What does it feel like to have the chance to inspire future generations to dream and create?
I’m not sure what you mean by “contributed.” In all of the books I have illustrated, mainly I am left on my own and my charge is to
create art that does justice to the story, while entertaining me as a painter.
What one subject have you yet to cover that you would most like to?
A ghost story–something mysterious, dark and beautiful.
What is one little known thing about yourself you’d be at liberty to share with our reader’s?
Nothing, really, except that I am insanely fascinated with big canines..
Be prepared for the world you know as a student to change in ways you can’t even begin to dream of. Drawing skills are basic to all forms of visual art. They are the tools of the trade, and being facile as a draftsman will allow you to adapt your output and nurture your imagination to move with markets that are sure to change in the future.
What do you think you would of been if not an artist?
I don’t know. Maybe I would have been born as a sea shell, or plankton, a cloud, or wind.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Just moping around aimlessly, or picking ticks off of my dog Wolfgang and some reading.
What projects are currently working on?
I have two mural designs to complete as paintings which will be enlarged into glass mosaics. It’s been a trying assignment because there are many people involved on the client side and their opinions had to be considered as the designs evolved. After that I will
complete the work on illustrating a Christmas story Mahlon wrote about 11 years ago for publication in 2012. And I have to provide enough finished drawings for an exhibit at my gallery sometime next year. Next I have to finish Beauty and the Beast which I started 8 years ago and haven’t touched since.
How do you hope to be remembered when your time comes?
As an artist inspired by beauty who’s best painting will always be the next one. On the other hand, I live and think for the moment. I don’t much think about what will happen after I’m gone. I won’t hear it nor care, perhaps, but I do hope to meet all of my dogs there.
Where can your fans go for the latest on your career?
So far, just my web site. I’m not a computer user, nor am I interested in social networking. Posting to a Facebook page or on
Twitter would be pure drudgery for me–and that’s the truth. If I ever do either of these things, it will be through Mahlon, though he’s
already overloaded with work.
A beast’s hirsute paw clasps a maid’s pale hand in a display of darkly tainted affection. Passion’s fire blazes in a fantastically anthropomorphised form. A humanoid shadow betrays a monstrous truth. These and other delightful frights and weird sights can be seen in the artworks of Kameron Ramos.
An aspiring young artist from Jacksonville, North Carolina, Kameron says he draws or paints whatever is on his mind at the moment he picks up pencil or brush. His thoughts and feelings at the time of composition influence what direction his artistic expression takes. His style varies depending on where each individual piece leads him. Kameron says that his girlfriend is his greatest inspiration. She was the one who gave him the impetus to once more follow an artistic path after he had given up on art.
Currently, Kameron is working on a comic which he hopes to complete someday. He also has an on-line gallery of his art located here: http://www.wix.com/kamram89/loki
Tremble with fright as movie monsters rendered in terrifying hues disturb your fitful sleep. Wake up screaming when classic horror villains invade your troubled dreams. Enter the nightmare world of Laurene Alvarado’s Pavor Nocturnus.
Always an artist, but never diligently so until fairly recently, Laurene began painting seriously in 2009. Now she may spend ten or more hours a day with brush in hand working on her acrylic creations. She loves painting at night, drawing energy from the midnight hush.
A great fan of horror, for her first collection Laurene decided to paint a number of the classic characters of horror. After the triple-viewing of The Exorcist during an all-night painting session led to a nightmare so vivid that Laurene woke up screaming, she found a name for her collection – Pavor Nocturnus, meaning “night tremors”.
Laurene draws inspiration from a variety of sources, including movies and music. She immersed herself in all things horror while working on the pieces for Pavor Nocturnus, watching horror movies and listening to horror movie soundtracks while she painted. Laurene lists Vincent Van Gogh, Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol, and every Disney animator that has ever lived among the artists who’ve inspired her. She strives to be known for her use of colour as well as her eye for detail and her ability to capture the essence of her subjects. Acrylic is her favourite medium, which makes a perfect match for an artist with such an appreciation of the limitless power of colour.
Laurene’s next collection, The Golden Age, will feature legendary actors and actresses from cinematic history. More of Laurene’s work can be seen at LAURENE*ALVARADO.
A pale faerie ponders in a sepia wood. A blue-lipped beauty tips her head alluringly beneath a Gothic arch. An exotically attractive otherworldly assassin stands proud beneath a green moon. A weird but strangely intriguing figure in red wanders a checkerboard world. A lavender-haired heroine looks to follow her path of destiny through a tortured landscape. Fantasy goes digital in the colourful creations of the digital artist Junior Mclean.
O. Mclean, Jr. showed artistic talent from an early age. A self-taught graphic designer, Junior studied basic web page building and then began work on graphic and digital design for a handful of clubs and events. He found great artistic and practical inspiration while working at various anime and comic book conventions in the New York City area. He now wishes to be an inspiration to younger generations, hoping to motivate the creativity of future artists.
Being greatly influenced by the art of anime, much of Junior’s work exhibits an anime vibe. Once he discovered 3D rendering, Junior began to connect with others interested in that style of art. Working as a freelance digital artist, he creates and sells various 2D/3D print designs, as well as fractal designs. Mid-town and Times Square are his favourite sites to hang out and work on his digital creations.
Come see incredibly intricate images of horror and the macabre. Spy surreal scenes of the the uncanny and the bizarre. Find transforming lycanthropes, terrifying monstrosities, and plague personified in the wonderfully detailed art of Scott Nellis.
Based in Brighton on the southern coast of England, Scott is a graduate of the University of Brighton with a BA (Hons) in Illustration. An artist that immerses himself in his work, Scott uses pen on paper to produce his elaborate creations. He often draws on a fairly large scale; his works typically range in size from A4 (8.3 x 11.7 in) to larger than A1 (23.4 x 33.1 in). As for artistic influences, Scott says that global and personal subjects, fantastical realms, the sub-conscious, and social conditioning all play a part in influencing his art.
More of Scott’s work can be viewed at Scott Nellis Illustration.
See vampires haunting moonlit graveyards, warriors confronting ravenous monsters, and sorceresses casting magic spells in the works of fantasy and horror illustrator Sean Finch. Spy worlds of wonder and terror rendered in intricate black and white by Sean’s deft hand.
A lifelong fan of various forms of pop-culture art, including comic-books and graphic novels, Sean draws his inspiration from various pop-culture sources. An avid science fiction, horror, and fantasy fan, Sean can still remember the goose bumps he got when he first read of the charge of the Rohirrim in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Return of the King. However, Sean may be most influenced artistically by comic-book and comics artists such as John Byrne, John Buscema, and Berkeley Breathed.
An alumnus of the Communication Arts and Design school at Virginia Commonwealth University, Sean’s time at art school opened his eyes and broadened his horizons. He decided that illustration best suited his penchant for detailed line drawings. After working several years as a flooring installer, Sean found a position as a draftsman and designer specializing in autoCAD-based drawings for an architectural firm.
Having just missed out on the whole computer graphics revolution, Sean received most of his training in traditional media. Although he has dabbled in painting with acrylics, he prefers to use pen and ink or pencil. Sean has also done a lot of work with coloured pencils and colour art markers.