Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Un/Real Portraits

Ever wanted to be a superhero?
Fighting zombies? Be a zombie?
How about a historically-themed family portrait in awesome period clothing?
Would your kid like to be knight in shining armor slaying/riding a dragon? (I personally favor riding, but...)
Shooting the biggest gun on the planet at a spaceship?

The possibilities are truly endless, and there are no limitations on settings or props.

I'm happy to finally be able to show off Un/Real Portraits - a new kind of service I'm offering for this Christmas :)

I'd been wanting to try this for a while - drawing over photos of folks and adding whatever they like. Rob (pictured) digs the visually-entrancing world of Steampunk, so he gets to be a kind of uber-tech-ed out Sherlock Holmes-meets-Doc Brown (from Back to the Future, 3 especially)-meets... well, you get the idea.

The only thing I need from you to make one of these is a *good photo,* which for our purposes means:
1. High-resolution

2. In-focus

3. Not too cluttered with stuff (I'll clutter it myself, ha)

4. Good lighting. This mostly means that it's NOT taken with a flash. Those wash out all the wonderful shadows that I will attempt to bring out in the photo. Something better would be a photo taken in daylight, or under a light, next to a lamp, etc.

5. A good, fun pose. And they don't need to be smiling, necessarily. Actually, might be better if they're not. You know? Ninjas and folks fighting monsters, for example, don't often bust out some cheesy grins, ha.
Shoot me a message at
for more info, scheduling, and prices.

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Perry Bible Fellowship ROX

I like my comics like I like my laydeez - intelligent, gorgeously crafted, shameless, and with a disturbing sense of humor.

For anyone who hasn't seen The Perry Bible Fellowship comics, do yourself a solid and keep hittin that random button.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Obama vs Zombies featured on The Zed Word

The awesome blog of all things Zombie, The Zed Word is featuring my Obama piece! I know a lot of zombie-addicts that will love this site. It's awesome to be included in such company. Cheers, dudes!

Monday, October 25, 2010


Just in time for the best day of the year, Obama vs. the Evil (Un)Dead is finished! Regardless of your opinion on the American President, you have to admit the man is facing some problems that just won't die. Undead issues, if you will...

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Bad Art Night

Whether it's our Drawing Club (sitting and drawing one coffee shop or another), the new Life Drawing Group in our town here in Japan, or the Project Nights of a couple I know (one of the more romantic notions I've heard), getting together and makin stuff is good. Just solid good.

Bad Art Night is a great one from my friend Laurie and her dude Jon. What I love most about it is how the central idea of making something "bad" is so freeing. "...No standards, no expectations..." Just making stuff.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


"Recoil," from the sketchbook...

Collaboration: James and the Giant Cannibal

My first (of many, hopefully) collaborative piece. Drawn by the honorable James Tohill and with colors by me.

Friday, October 15, 2010

‎Obi Wayne Kinobi & Garth Vader

‎"Obi Wayne Kinobi & Garth Vader"

More photoshop-playin with a pop-culture mashup of my own creation... Thinkin this might be a Halloween costume idea.

Now fair is fair: looking it up this morning when I had the idea, I did see a few different kinds of "Garth Vader" (the best one brought up a black-guitar-wielding "Darth
Brooks," ha), but never did see anyone with an "Obi Wayne."

(And again, please no one sue me :D)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Crown, from the sketchbook

Worked on this mostly on trains, got all caught up on that headdress of hers, and added the hair today on my commute to and from town. You know, I do love the Japanese trains.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Pop-Culture Mashup: Tin Man+Iron Man=Ti(ro)n Man?

Saturday mornin' photoshop-playin of my own creation :D
Was thinking someone could make an awesome Halloween costume out of the idea. Loving the pop-culture mashup!
(please no one sue me)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Poster for Halloween Rampage in Osaka

If you're in Osaka on 10/30 this year, there's no place better to be than the multi-venue, multimedia, multi-genre extravaganza known as Halloween Rampage. I'll be "performing" by doing some live drawing (projected up onto the wall over an hour or two as I work on it), so come by! Find out more on the fb event page.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

"Intoxicating" Fan Tattoo

Just got this pic of "Intoxicating" tattoo submitted to the FB Art page. Thanks Christy!

The finished "Intoxicating" :

Tho I think Christy was partial to this earlier version of the drawing:

Friday, August 13, 2010

"Lady Gaga Devouring a Unicorn Carcass"

I know it's not technically a carcass if it's still kickin, but "carcass" just sounds so much cooler...

After deciding between a few choices, I went with the sparkly background. For her eyes I was thinking of those nature movies that show jackals or hyenas feeding at night, eyes caught spookily in the lights from the "cameras."

The whole thing started when my buddy Joe sent me this, as featured on,

While I missed the actual commission deadline, I still wanted to make the piece. I want to send some caricatures to MAD Magazine sometime soon, and this one seemed as good as any to do for that. I really like Lady Gaga ("Bad Romance" is surprisingly addictive) for her show(wo)manship an the vivid spectacle she offers. One has the idea that she has the biggest creative hand in it all (as opposed to some producer/record label churning out more shiny dreck). So I present this imagined portrait with all due respect.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Stork Tattoo

A recently finished tattoo design for my buddy Paul.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

New "Planet Eigo" Cover

Planet Eigo is a book used by JETs (get it?) teaching English in Japan. It's fulla useful lesson plans, activities and stuff for Assitant Language Teachers.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Queztal Tattoo Design

The finished Guatemalan Tattoo design for A.M.

It will begin at the small of her back ("growing out" of an older tattoo already there), the trunk will continue up her spine to the large part of the tree, where the Quetzal sits. Per the aforementioned tattooee's request, plans are to do it in the pictured monochromatic brownish tones, tho she's mentioned adding the Quetzal's vivid colors to the design at some future point.

I also enjoy this process pic of the Quetzal drawing. That's a helluva tail :)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

"From West to East"

"From West to East"
Pencil and digital, 2010

This is a poster/cover for the upcoming short film series "From West to East," links and more to be posted soon...

Monday, March 1, 2010

Yokai Explosion! Japanese Cryptozoological/Mythological Creatures

My abiding love for monsters of all shapes and sizes continues unabated in this series of Japanese Yokai, first shown in "Cryptozoology", an exhibition at the MIR Gallery in Nashville, TN, March 2010. The exhibit features six artists displaying their diverse interpretations of various cryptids including Bigfoot, the Lock Ness Monster, etc. Here are mine.

"Nekomusume" (Cat-Daughter)
pencil and digital, 2010

"Karakasa Attacks! (Rise of the Demon Japanese Umbrellas)"
pencil and digital, 2010

"Rokurokubi" (Long-Necked Woman)
pencil and digital, 2010

"Noppera-bō" (Faceless Ghost)
pencil and digital, 2010

Pencil and digital, 2009

Originally made as a spot illustration for Metropolis Magazine's "Last Word" section, published on October 16, 2009.

"The Last Word" article this accompanied is a wonderful piece about the importance of
Yokai in Japanese culture, written by Matt Alt. He, along with Hiroko Yoda and Tatsuya Morino, produced the great "Yokai Attack!: The Japanese Monster Survival Guide". Check it out.

For more info on this awesome member of our cryptozoological community, you can see
this awesomely comprehensive guide by Mark (who also has good taste in illustration :D)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Metropolis Year-End Special

Hi Folks,

Got some new images I did for Metropolis' Special Year-End issue for 12/25/09-1/7/10.

They always do a "Best of/Worst of the Year" feature, in multiple categories like Entertainment, Politics, Sports, and Arts & Culture, including text from multiple writers.

Above is the section opener. The text reads:

"2009 was a year of extremes in Japan. For every Oscar-winning Departures that stirred national pride, there was a drug-sniffing Noripi who brought fans down to earth. Almost as soon as a fresh political party assumed power, its leader became embroiled in an old-school funding scandal. Sometimes, the year’s highs and lows were embodied in a single person: a teen golfing sensation inspired awe by winning the Japanese money title, and revulsion thanks to his hideous fashion sense (see page 22). For our pictorial wrap-up of 2009, we looked beyond the headlines to uncover the lesser-known stories that best represented an extreme year."

"Japan’s variety programs usually steer clear of political hot potatoes, since entertainers have a history of foot-in-mouth disease. Yet veteran TV emcee Mino Monta, 64, managed to embarrass himself in May when he glibly suggested on his TBS morning program that Japan should offer to buy back the four Northern Territories from Russia. The occasion? A state visit by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Monta made the remarks to four panelists, all of whom avoided any response. He went on to say that because of the depressed state of the Russian economy, Moscow should jump at the chance to earn some extra cash. Monta’s comments immediately caused problems for the Foreign Ministry and, the next day, TBS representatives released a statement saying the remarks were inappropriate but made in jest.—Chris Betros"

"Giving new meaning to the term “portable television,” the emergence of BeeTV was the most notable—and most notably Japanese—entertainment success story of 2009. The keitai-exclusive broadcasting service, co-produced by cellphone giant Docomo and entertainment group Avex, launched fully formed on May 1 with a roster of top-name talent, led by the doyenne of female entertainers, Akiko Wada. Some 350,000 users signed on for the monthly service (at ¥315 a pop), and the number is expected to grow to 3.5 million in 2013. With brief (5-10min) episodes of all-original programming that subscribers can tune in to whenever they like, BeeTV offers a tantalizing glimpse of the future of television.—Steve Trautlein"

"An ignominious end to a memorable political career: that sums up the events of July 21, when former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi missed his last-ever Diet session… because he was stuck in traffic. During his tenure as PM from 2001-2006, Koizumi displayed a populist touch, and thanks to his maverick leadership style (and trademark mane of silver hair), he became the most recognizable politician of his generation. The humiliating finale to his 37-year Lower House career came as he got hung up during the commute to Tokyo from Kanagawa—a situation that, like so many of Koizumi’s maneuvers, his admiring countrymen could identify with.—Steve Trautlein"

"2009 will forever be remembered as the year the DPJ wrested power from the good ol’ boys of the LDP. But it might also be known as The Year of the Woman. By enlisting a cadre of female political novices to run against entrenched LDP stalwarts, DPJ honcho Ichiro Ozawa helped ensure a landslide victory for his party. Foremost among “Ozawa’s Princesses” was Mieko Tanaka, a 33-year-old former sex columnist who once appeared topless in a horror film called Blind Beast vs. Killer Dwarf; other candidates included a swimsuit model and a former hostess. Tanaka’s opponent in the Ishikawa Prefecture No. 2 district race, dour 71-year-old former PM Yoshio Mori, groused, “She was picked only because she is young and has a nice body.” Perhaps. But Tanaka acquitted herself so well that she made it to the Diet under Japan’s proportional representation rules; in total, she and her sisters claimed 96 Lower House seats.—ST"

"Brave boy, Ryo Ishikawa. The teen golfing phenom took on the world’s best and returned home to win the Japan tour’s money crown. He played with skill. He played with guts. And it looks as if those guts were used to decorate his clothing. There’s nothing wrong with pushing the envelope when it comes to golf fashion, but when you use vomit as your primary color—as Ishikawa’s clothing supplier Yonex has clearly done—then we have to draw the line. If you’re going to wear outrageous, it helps if you are: a) really outrageous; b) strong on irony; c) coordinated; d) Ian Poulter. Ishikawa was none of these things and came across as a kid with an overbearing fashion-designing mum who’s strung out on acid. Hopefully, with $2 million in his pocket, the King can buy some new clothes.—Fred Varcoe"

"Japanese volleyball reached its peak in the ’60s and ’70s, when the women’s team took two Olympic golds, two silvers and a bronze, while the men won a bronze, silver and gold in successive Olympics (1964-72). The women have occasionally sparkled on the world stage since then, but the men have struggled after taking the silver medal at the 1977 World Cup. However, things have finally started to come together thanks to a stable, tough and progressive coach (Tatsuya Ueta) and a number of world-class players, including spike-happy Kunihiro Shimizu. After qualifying for the Beijing Olympics, the men did even better this year, taking the bronze at a major international volleyball event—the World Grand Champions Cup in Nagoya—for the first time since 1977.—FV"

"Granted, I’ve never much liked alternately whinging and preening Oasis. But even from the perspective of their expectant fans at this year’s Fuji Rock Festival, it was obvious that the group was just a highly paid headliner going through the motions. Guitarist Noel Gallagher and singer bro Liam didn’t so much as glance at each other; less than a month later, the band had split up amid reports of fraternal guitar smashings. Wish we could say farewell and good riddance, but apparently Liam and the Oasis backing boys have the misguided idea of continuing on without main songwriter Noel. Talk about going out not with a bang but a whimper…—Wendy Miner"

"With arts budgets deflating as fast as a banker’s bottom line, Tokyo’s decision to throw cash at the sinking Tokyo International Arts Festival and reinvent it as the Festival/Tokyo was nothing short of miraculous. Granted, Governor Ishihara had the ulterior motive of securing the Olympics by fostering a hypothetical “New Wave of Culture from Tokyo.” But if the end result was not one, but two full-fledged international theater programs in one year—who cares? Under the sure hand of Chiaki Soma, F/T brought cutting-edge dramatics to Tokyo. And at a time when English-language theater is scarce, we were even treated to the rare spectacle of productions by leading contemporary Japanese playwrights captioned in English. In the wake of Tokyo’s failed Olympic bid, will the cash run dry? Over 100,000 delighted theatergoers hope the answer is no.—Dan Grunebaum"