Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Goals - Scorecard

Around this time last year, I went public with my goals for 2010. I think it’s only fair that I publicly acknowledge whether or not I met those goals. So, here goes.

Some of them were accomplished and some of them were not. But I can say with all honesty that the reason I wasn’t successful with some were do to my success with others. I was amazingly (thankfully) busy this year. As you can tell from my blog posts alone. In 2009, I had 84 post, as of right now I have 123. So, I was crunched for time, but I did try. Here we go…

Redesign my website. Started out big at the beginning of the year and then fizzled out. Lately I’ve just been directing people here since it’s more up-to-date.

Spookytown. Yikes, this is my biggest disappointment. I didn’t even finish drawing it much less scanning, coloring and lettering. I did take them to set up the lettering for every page, so there’s that.

Sketch Cards. My biggest success. I started the year never having been on a sketch card set. I finished the year having been on eight. Dead@17, Empire Strikes Back, P’ups, The Pro, Mixtape, Hack/Slash, Clone Wars, and Domino Lady / The Spider. And already in the works for 2011 is Lady Death, Bettie Page, Thor, Captain America and Marvel Beginnings. Part of that goal was to get in sets for DC, Marvel and Star Wars. Two down, now to get DC.

I’ve done so much of them that I have to cut back. I already reluctantly turned down Sheena for 5finity because f time restraints. So, I think this year you might see less of them from me.

Publish a sketchbook. Done and done. I was very pleased with myself for this one. I had wanted to do it for some time. It was a lot of work to compile and I think the end result is pretty nice. Hey, you can buy it online you know.

The Complete Shades of Blue. Goal un-achieved. I thought Jim had the lettered files from all the issues, but it turned out that he didn’t. But, he’s actually having them re-lettered (and colored) to put them online. So maybe you’ll hear something about that later.

So there you have it. Two for five. But I can proudly say that the failed ones weren’t failed to due to laziness. And like I said I a year ago, even if none of these silly things got accomplished and my family was still healthy and happy and was able to support them, the year would be a success. Unfortunately, we lost a family member this year, my cousin Aggie, who we all miss. We also lost our 12 year old cat Frankie. But mostly 2010 was kind to us and we appreciate. Look for my 2011 goals coming soon.

20 in 2010 Book Challenge

At the beginning of the 2010, Heather and I started a challenge, to read at least 20 books each during the year. Even with all the stuff we have going on, both of us have always read a lot. We’re chain readers, if you will, knowing which book we’re going to read next before we’re finished with our current one. Bookmark goes out of one into the next.

Here are my results. Technically, I read 51 “books”. But to be fair, a lot of them were comic book or comic strip collections, which could be read really quickly. So I thought in the spirit of the challenge, only written, non-comic books should be counted. But in fairness to me, I thought I should get some credit for reading them, since they did take time after all. So I’m going with every 10 of those count as one book.

So, I read 18 “actual” books and 34 comic type books. Using my equation, that nets me just over 21 books. Success! Success!

Here is my list:

  • Gorillaz: Rise of the Ogre by Gorillaz (Great band, great art, great book)
  • The Somnambulist by Jonathan Barnes (Pretty good)
  • The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl (A bit so slow at times)
  • My Custom Van by Michael Ian Black (Sporadically funny)
  • The Rocketeer, Cliff’s New York Adventure by Dave Stevens (Beautiful art)
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Yes, I gave into the book that was everywhere. And I liked it.)
  • L.A. Noir by John Butin (Very interesting read)
  • Hellboy: The Ice Wolves by Mark Chadbourn (Hellboy novels are almost always good. This one was too.)
  • Bob Flame: Rocky Mountain Ranger by Dorr Yeager (Bought this at the gift shop in Rocky Mountain National Park)
  • No Country For Old Men by Cormac McCarthy (Movie follows the book almost exactly, the towards the end there are differences)
  • Parker: The Hunter by Darwyn Cooke (Always incredible, I have the second book cued up)
  • Too Fat To Fish by Artie Lange (Hilarious and sometimes sad)
  • Hellboy: The All Seeing Eye by Mark Morris (Good)
  • The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo and Bagram Ibatoulline (Children's novel)
  • Kick-Ass by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. (Kick-ass)
  • The Spy Who Loved Me by Ian Fleming (Not terrible, not great)
  • The Dick Tracy Casebook edited by Max Allan Collins and Dick Locher (Great illustrations, hit and miss storylines)
  • Dead@17 Afterbirth by Josh Howard (Always fun)
  • The Little Sister by Raymond Chandler (Chandler entertains)
  • Dexter in the Dark by Jeff Lindsey (Love me some Dexter)
  • Dead@17 The 13th Brother by Josh Howard (More Josh goodness)
  • The Monster of Florence by Douglas Preston and Mario Spezi (Pretty engrossing, look into it)
  • The Clash by The Clash (I wish the Beastie Boys would do a book like this)
  • Bone: Crown of Horns by Jeff Smith (My first time reading the Bone series, loved it)
  • Red Rocket 7 by Mike Allred (Really enjoyed this and all the musical references through the years)
  • Shes’ Crazy, He’s a Liar, Now What? by Cecily Knobler (This is a book I illustrated. I read most of the working manuscript as I was doing the art, but went back a read the entire thing. Very funny and shocking at times. Cecily, you've got some stories in you.
  • FoxTrox: Houston We Have a Problem by Bill Amend (I was sad when FoxTrox went Sundays only, knowing these collections would stop)
  • Scott Pilgrim 1-6 by Scott Lee O’Malley (Awesomeness)
  • The Walking Dead Volumes 1-9 by Robert Kirkman (and various artists) (Awesomeness)
  • Y: The Last Man by Brain K. Vaughan (and various artists) (Awesomeness)

As you can see, I was all over the place. I don’t know if I could pick my favorite from all of these. Walking Dead, Y and Scott Pilgrim are definitely standouts. My Custom Van was definitely the most disappointing. It was a fun ear of reading, I gotta say.

We're going to do it again in 2011. I already have two books going right now and about ten lined up. And for the record, the lovely Heather ended up reading 19 books. What a loser, right?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Marvel Sketch Cards by Upper Deck

I'm honored and excited to announce I will be working on three upcoming Marvel Comics card sets being produced by Upper Deck. I've just my blanks for "Marvel Beginnings" and "Thor" and should be getting the "Captain America" ones soon after. Both "Thor" and "Captain America" will be tied in with the new films.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Couple of Cards

Here are some custom cards I did for a friend of mine. One for her son's (and Jack's buddy) birthday party and one for her work Christmas card. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Voltron: United and Drawn

5finity is producing a Voltron coffee table book and I'm supposed to have a pin-up in it. I'm not that great with mechanical stuff, so I stuck with what I knew. I drew Princess Allura, who I had never heard of until this.

From the site..."5FINITY Productions, in association with Moonstone Books and World Events Productions, presents the first ever official art book based on the classic animated series Voltron: Defender of the Universe. An endearing blend of fantasy and mechanics, this legendary brand has fused itself into social and pop-culture history. To many genre fans, Voltron was the original transforming robotic action series and introduced an entire generation into the world of Japanese style animation. A mix of official brand history, original artwork, fan memories, celebrity testimonials, and more, this project will celebrate Voltron's influence on pop culture and beyond!"

Pre-Order Voltron: United and Drawn

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Domino Lady and The Spider Preview Card

My preview card form the Domino Lady and The Spider sketch card set from 5finity.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cents Magazine

My copy of American Airlines Cents Magazine with my illustrations in it came today.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Custom Illustrations

Did this piece for a couple's wedding invitation...
Did this for a good friend (of a hundred years), who is a physical therapist...

Friday, November 05, 2010

G.I. Joe Adventure Team

Here is a quick pin-up of a GI Joe Adventure Team member from the 70s. I did a drawing similar to this when I was a little kid (see below) and wanted to recreate it as an adult. I was a hugh Adventure Team fan back then. Still am I suppose. I still have a few figures, foot locker and even the big headquarters. I even bought Jack a few the replica Joes that have come out in the past several years but he's not old enough for them yet. I wish had more time to do drawings like this just for kicks, but duty calls you know.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Connect with me on deviantART

I've had a deviantART account for about a year now, but really never did anything with it because I found the interface to be a bit clunky. But I recently buckled down and started using that sucker. So if you're on there yourself, check out my profile. I still have a lot of stuff to add, so check back from time to time.

Cal Slayton - deviantART

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Dead@17 Commission - Nara vs Violet

Here is a piece someone recently commissioned me to do. It's Dead@17's Nara Kilday battling Violet Grey from the end of Blood of Saints. The only tweak to it is he wanted Nara in a "goth punky outfit", which I was more than willing to provide. I'm pretty happy with how this piece turned out. It came together pretty quickly. One thumbnail got me the pose I wanted and it took from there. This is ink on bristol, colored with Prismacolors. Hope you like it.

Sneak Peek

Here's a little teaser of a comic book cover I'm working on.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

American Airlines Cents Magazine

I was recently commissioned to do some freelance illustrations for American Airlines. One of their publications is called Cents Magazine, which is published for American Airlines Federal Credit Union. They did a story on "Surviving Self-Employment: Five money rules to help you stay ahead of the curve". They needed some illustrations to go along with it and contacted me to see if I'd be interested in the job. Well, of course I was. They sent over the story along with some ideas they had and I went to it. Here is the finished results, hope you like it. I had fun working on it.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Lady Death Sketch Cards

My next set up from 5finity is the Lady Death Sketch Card Set. Should be a great set, artists actually had to "audition" for this one by sending is a sample drawing before being accepted. So keep your eyes open for this one.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Buffy The Vampire Slayer Sketch Card

A recent commission. I'm always open for commissions, so if you want something done, just drop me a line.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Spider-Man Pin-up

Here is a Spider-Man commission I did for a friend's nephew.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Adventures of Construct Man

This is a personalized 2 page comic I did for a client a little while back. He had a professor friend who was receiving some sort of special recognition at a big event. Nearly 100 of his friends were submitting remembrances of the guy. The people who organized the celebration event selected about 8 - 10 to turn into poster-sized versions for the event. My client said ours was prominently displayed in the room along with several limericks, and a few photographs. He said that it got tons of comments and was a big hit.

He wrote the script, though I took his name off here because I didn't know if he would want to it public. There was also a personal note on the last panel which I removed for the same reason.

Domino Lady and The Spider Sketch Cards

Doing the new set from 5finity. Two characters I've never done before, should be fun. There will only be 250 of these cards with the limited amount of artists and they will be going to three exclusive dealers. Get yours while you can. Pulpy Goodness.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Super Hero Designs

Here are some character designs I did recently for ADH Events in Chicago. They had a client who wanted super heroes to represent their company at their booth during a convention. I did trading cards, cloisonne pins, and large banner designs. I got my samples from them today and was very happy with how they turned out. This is the first time I've had comic illustrations turned into cloisonne pins. The backs of the cards have character descriptions and contact information for the company. They're supposed to be emailing photos of the booths. If I get those, I'll update.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Latest and Last Listoon

What we'd like Texas and OU players to say in postgame interviews.

Ah, read it while you can. Unfortunately this is the final Listoon. The newspaper is going start running my friend David Hopkins' strip "We've Never Met" weekly. Unlike Listoons, it's a serialized strip and they're making the move in attempt to get readers catching on to it. Good news for David and Chad. Sad news for me and Geoff... er, uh Stacy. I can never get that straight, I'm always unsure about where he/she is the transformation process.

Anyway, it was a fun ride. Thanks to David, who got me involved. Thanks to Rob, my Editor at Quick for hiring me and thanks to Stacy for writing such entertaining stuff for me to scribble. Rob mentioned we may do one here or there in the future, so keep your eyes and ears open.

And now on to the Texas/OU themed strip. Go Hogs.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Back in Town Again

Spookytown that is. It’s been many, many moons and a plethora (would you say I had a plethora?) of posts since I’ve given any update on Spookytown, the graphic novel I’m working on. Why the delay? The just-mentioned plethora of posts of course. Too many other things have taken priority over the book. Many of those things are paying things and they will always outrank my pet comic book projects. I wish I had an extra four hours a day. That’s all I ask for, I’m not greedy. Just four.

But I am making a conscience effort to work on it every day, even if it’s just drawing face. Anything to move it forward. So if you’re interested in the book and it’s progress, I am working it. It’s not dead. Undead, maybe, but not dead.

If you’re unfamiliar with Spookytown, just visit the website.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Couple of New Sketch Cards

The Scarlet one was a commissioned piece. I love doing GI Joe cards. The Catwoman (Julie Newmar style) was for the March of Dimes Charity Auction. Steve took all the unsold cards, bundled them into one auction and added...

"You will get a brand new, hasn't been offered sketch card from a hot artist, also, as a surprise, for a total of 25 sketch cards!"

Hot artist, you heard him! Well, luke warm maybe. Anyway, I was a surprise artist at least.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

New Vector Illustrations

Here are a few more of the illustrations I did for "Never Marry A Man...".

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My Influence Map

On deviantART, fox-orian started an "influence map meme" and they’ve been popping up all over different artists’ websites. I don’t really put the “me” in “meme” that often, but each time I saw one of these, I couldn’t help but think how nice they looked and how cool it would be to do one myself. I know I’m bit late to the game, but I don’t care.

I knew it would be fun to make but I didn’t realize how hard it would be. Man, narrowing this group down was a challenge. Some harsh, harsh cuts were made. I could’ve done one three times this size.

To make it easier, I decided just put in people (or groups) that create. Not creations. For example, Matt Groening instead of the Simpsons. So that helped by eliminating particular movies and TV shows. And I decided mainly to focus on art and only have a few musicians and directors. Mainly it's comic artists and cartoonists.

I turned mine on it’s side to fit monitors better. Hope you like it. Make one for yourself if you haven't already.

Latest Listoon and Some old KISS Memorabilia

"Merchandising ideas Kiss has yet to try."
When I got the script for this Listoon (or KISStoon), I knew it would be a fun one for me. As a kid, I was a huge KISS fan. They were really the only albums I had for a while, I was in the KISS Army, and I was an “Ace” guy. But I dropped off after “Dynasty”. No Peter and Ace, no deal. I’ve only seen them once in concert, on their first reunion tour, when they had Peter and Ace. It was everything I wanted it to be. Like Alive and Alive II come to life.

While drawing this strip, I dug into some boxes in the studio closet and found a lot of my old KISS memorabilia. Feast your eyes on this treasure trove of KISStory…

Monday, September 13, 2010

Empire Strikes Back - Return Cards

Here are my 6 returns. Just drop me a line if you're interested. Leia already sold. Thanks for looking!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Sketch Cards for Sale

Here are some PSC that I have available for sale. Single Character ones - $25, two character ones - $45. Price includes shipping.

UPDATE: Baroness is sold.

Also taking commissions at those prices.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Bettie Page Sketch Cards

I'm excited to announce that I've be asked to contribute to the Bettie Page Private Collection Sketch Card Series that is being produced by Versicolor Productions. It's the first Officially Licensed Bettie Page trading card set in 15 years, plus it's the first ever "All Art" set. Should be a good one. Take a look at the cool blanks they've produced. Artist Exclusives pre-printed with the artist's name, as well as oversized cards, which are particularly rad. In addition to the one-of-a-kind sketch cards, I'll be doing one digital piece that will be included in the main set of cards. Keep an eye at for these!

Sketch Cards for March of Dimes Charity Auction

UPDATE: BIDDING has ended.

Thanks to everyone who bid on my cards. I'm really happy to announce that two of my cards were the TOP TWO out of all 519 cards. And I a third one was number nine. That's so crazy. Very, very cool. I had a fear that wouldn't even get bid on, so this is great.

Rocketeer - $77.00
Power Girl - $62.69
Zatanna - $42.00
White and Black Queen - $25.49
Wolverine and X-23 - $20.50
$227.68 Total for March of Dimes
I was honored that Steve Frank of 5finity Productions asked if I would participate in his March of Dimes Charity Auction. He sent me 5 blanks and here is what I came up with, hope you like them. Once they go up for auction, I'll post the link (and beg people to bid on them).