Tuesday, January 7, 2014


2013 was a vastly different year than any before when it came to exploring my creativity.

Almost immediately I found myself working on a story written by my friend Erica Schultz, the brilliant creator of M3. She asked if I'd be willing to contribute to an anthology she was helping to put together to address bullying. The story she wrote took place during World War 2  - D-Day to be exact.  It was a lot of fun researching the era through photos and movies, especially since my Dad went through Normandy a couple weeks after D-Day. I spent a lot of time gong through his old army scrapbook looking for reference.

The story pushed me in a couple of different ways. First, it really taught me the importance of reference and getting things right. Stories are only good and art only believable when it is based on reality.  I also found myself inking and coloring this story- neither things I'm incredibly comfortable with, especially with the amount of detail I had put into the pencils on the pages.


I decided to fade the colors in order to give them more
of a Saving Private Ryan look. 

Initial colors

Shortly after I got another script from AC Comics for a She-Cat story-  a Raiders Of The Lost Ark style truck chase written by Mark Holmes. The script was great and my only regret was that I wasn't able to put as much time or effort into it as I would have liked.

In April, my friend Ann O'Connor passed away. Ann was an incredibly creative person who found a way to show her creativity without knowing how to draw, paint, or anything that most people would consider "art". I was very touched by some of the things I discovered about her and her feelings toward my work. This realization showed me that I needed to push myself and my creations more.

I decided that I needed to start exploring some different outlets of creativity. I  found myself drawing from National Geographic Magazine which gave my work a more worldly feel. From them I drew people from other countries and animals. I also started spending more time at the Palette & Chisel Academy of Fine Arts drawing from a live model. The difference now being that I drew with a pen, or did marker studies, or paintings, and ended up doing a couple of pastel drawings. I entered a piece of art into a gallery show. I plan on doing some sculpting and some model building.

rough pencil drawing

Experimenting with odorless markers

Marker and pen studies
quick sketches

gouache painting of live model

pastel drawing of live model

My first exhibition piece for the Chicago Architecture Association's
tour of Chicago's famous buildings

Storytelling studies:

Erica Schultz asked me to do a painted cover for M3 #9 which will be out some time in February 2014.

This is the pencil for the cover. I will post the painted finish
when the book comes out next month.

I finished out the year with another Mark Holmes Femforce story starring Ms. Victory. The thing that was odd about this story was that although the story itself was average Femforce fair, my artwork was not. It is not often that I think the work I've done excels the story in anyway, but this story was different. I don't know what happened but something did. I sure wish the She- Cat story had turned out like this one.

That was about it. I have a few projects in mind for 2014- both personal and professional. I'm looking forward to see what I can accomplish this year and hope you are too!