Thursday, December 15, 2011

Updates Coming Soon

I've been eating, breathing and pooping work lately.  .... freelance!

Updates about everything from work to not-work will get posted on the blahg soon; until then enjoy this handsome sketch.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Some Nudity for Your Tuesdity

I sketched this up in the wee hours of the morning today... my friend Tim Haldeen recently introduced me to the world of .03mm lead size and cross-hatching has never been more addictive.  Maybe it's the animator in me but I love tedious work sometimes.

Looking at it now he looks to me like a strung-out Mark Twain.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


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Been busy the last couple of days coming up with these character designs.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The End of Summer

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Here's a tiny sample of some of the design & animation work I've been doing lately in Illustrator.  I'll make some time to post more and update my website soon.

*design not actually summer related in context.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Concept Art & Painting in Photoshop

I took a stab at some concept-arting* for a project last month that involved painting in Photoshop.  I haven't done much digital painting yet so it was pretty new to me; I really enjoyed doing it & want to work on refining it more.  Just think of all the detailed pimples & vivid in-grown hairs I could paint... maybe if I ever save up enough money to get me a fancy new Cintiq...**

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More on these & what they're for later...

* If you want to check out what beautiful professional-level concept art looks like, check out this great tumblr feed: FUCKYEAHCONCEPTART 

** In the meantime, I did take the time to pre-order Wacom's new Inkling on and if you love to draw and are looking for a $200 investment that will change the way you sketch & edit illustrations then I highly encourage you to do the same.  I think it will be a great opportunity to get back into hand-drawn animation as well, since there's no tedious need to scan every image.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hustle 'n' Bustle

Here's an angry mob I whipped up for a recent freelance project.  BONUS: it's animatable!

More work coming soon, work has been all up in my guts as of late.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Off the Air "Dance" Titles

A good friend & former coworker at Columbia College gave me the wonderful opportunity to do a bit of animation for an [adult swim] show called Off the Air.  This episode was about dance, and I was commissioned to do the opening title sequence.  It was great to be a part of such an interesting piece of television, and not just endtags this time!

Thanks, Cody!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Sketch of My Pep-Pep

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I drew this last night while watching crappy TV, just as my father would've wanted.  Miss ya Pops!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Happy Birthday Rob Cohen!

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I drew this up in Illustrator today for my friend & colleague Rob Cohen who turned 30 today.  I didn't know him during his teen years but I needed to give that hairstyle the homage it deserved.  Happy Birthday Rob!

NOW & THEN  (...sorry Rob)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Remembering I Can Draw Things...

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Thanks for the ride back to NYC, Locksley!  Time to get back down to business...

BONUS: I drew this on some brown paper during a production meeting today & bumped it up with a few highlights in Photoshap: 

Sunday, July 31, 2011

"Second Hand" by Isaac King

I'm on another busy hiatus but hopefully things will be cooling down soon.  Thanks to the power of technology I can blog from the comfort of my own laptop inside of a van crossing Indiana (thanks for the ride, Locksley!) and finally get some time to catch up.
I love the art direction of the video above, it's such a great combination of mixing digital mediums that you don't see enough of really.  I love the way he handled the translation of the character designs into the quasi-3D environment; very well done!
Until I get back to NYC, I thought I'd post a few links to a few [more] things I've enjoyed via the internet lately:

Kanye West & Jay-Z "Otis" (WatchTheThrone.com
DoomStarks "Victory Laps" (2dopeboyz
Nikki Jean "La Di Da Di Da" (iTunes)
Rock Creek Park EP oddisee (iTunes)
Ghostfunk EP Max Tannone x Ghostface Killah (okayplayer

John K's Evolution of Macaroni (John K Stuff):
Beavis & Butthead Return (MTV):
Boob Physics (Babe Lab NSFW):

Monday, July 11, 2011

Locksley Taxicab Promo

For their upcoming release, my favorite friendband™ Locksley commissioned me to design a 15-second promo to be played on the displays in the back of cabs in NYC, Chicago & Boston.  It was a just under a two-day turnaround so I'm pretty pleased with how it came out, but I'm sure most people will be drunk when they see it anyhow.

UPDATE:  Here it is as seen in the wild:

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Eyedrops Spec Spot "TGIF"

Here's my latest stop-motion project getting some love this week, I'm fairly swamped with work at the moment so I'll take time to deconstruct it in future blog posts.  For now, enjoy!  I worked hard on it dammit.

CREDITS: Directed by Mark Phillips
Written by Mark Phillips & Luke Rotzler
Additional Animation by Luke Rotzler
Sound Mix by Dave Wolfe
Voices by Luke Rotzler, Mark Phillips & Marybess Pritchett
Additional Sound by David Pietricola
Produced by Lifelong Friendship Society
Original Concept by JWT 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Leo Burnett "Language of the 21st Century" Intro

Shot on a Canon 7D w/ Dragon Stopmotion, composited in After Effects.

I worked on this project via The Lifelong Friendship Society in collaboration with agency Leo Burnett & artist Kieran Antill for the agency's 2011 Cannes Presentation.  The blocks themselves were actually quite large, over a foot-&-a-half across and hand-constructed by the good people of twoseven with wood.  It may not look like much but it was definitely one of the more physically challenging shoots I've been on lately, if only due to the weight of the cubes & the heat that day.  Riding $10K of camera equipment on a bike across Williamsburg to try to make call time probably didn't help much either...

BONUS: The official website up now:

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

BBQ Flyer Design

I used to do crappy poster designs all the time back when I worked at Columbia College Chicago in the Science Institute.  I'd entertain myself by fitting the most disgusting and deplorable imagery I could find into something like an announcement for a weekend teacher workshop.  If you don't believe me, find a good picture of back herpes, bump up the contrast & invert the colors and you have yourself a beautiful starry background for your next poster.
Obviously, I've matured tons since then because I left out any such nonsense in this design I did for a BBQ recently:

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Coming Soon: New Stop Motion!

I'm currently wrapping up a couple of stop motion projects that I shot earlier this year, they should be up within the week!  In related news, I think I've done enough stop motion compositing for the summer.  

Visine "TGIF" Director's Cut

Leo Burnett & Kieran Antill "The Language of the 21st Century" 

I'd also like to thank everyone who came out to support at the Brooklyn Film Festival!  It was a great year & I'd like to congratulate all of my fellow filmmakers who put the 'tainment' back in 'edutainment'.

I didn't have time to photoshop more people into the audience.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Random Sketches

Hey everyone -- my apologies for not getting to post more lately, things are busy as per usual.  Yesterday I had the pleasure of shooting a stop motion project with a bunch of guys I'd never worked with before in a studio with no AC for 10 hours and it was a blast!  Once the post & audio are finalized I'll have something to show.  I have a lot of work coming up this week with the Brooklyn Film Festival and the CunninLynguists video, so there will be good things coming up.   Until then, enjoy some random drawings I did last week.

Practice Posin'

Pensive Superhero Type

Sometimes you get bored halfway through a drawing and need to mix it up.

Friday, May 20, 2011

"Ci'iy Life" BFF Showtimes Announced

Hey!  Just because you can watch my music video for Oddisee's "Ci'iy Life" for free right now from the comfort of your own internet connection, why not pay some money and come on out to the Brooklyn Film Festival on June 5th or the 7th?  I'll be at the 2:30 showing on Sunday, come out & hang.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Attempting Type Design

I don't really do too much typography design but I was pulled onto a pitch a few weeks back where I had to come up with a few quick concepts.  I have the most fun doing character stuff but this was more interesting than I had originally thought it would be (which was somewhere on the 'interesting scale' right around 'doing taxes').

Friday, May 13, 2011

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Ci'iy Life Music Video

It's officially LIVE everybody.  Thanks to Oddisee, Tranqill, & Sam Bair for helping me get this video out & I'll keep you posted for when it's scheduled to play at the Brooklyn Film Festival.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Ci'iy Life x Brooklyn Film Festival

GOOD NEWS!  My music video for Oddisee's Ci'iy Life is an official selection of this year's Brooklyn Film Festival.  Stay tuned for more information...

"Enemies with Benefits" Behind the Scenes

Thanks to the CunninLynguists & Tonedeff for the amazing weekend.  I'd also like to shout out Luke Rotzler and Sam Bair (of Locksley) for helping me out on set.  Check back for more video-related updates soon. YAL4LIFE.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Toronto Comic Arts Festival: Pencil it In

My friend Tim Haldeen sent me this earlier today... it's a great little window into the tools & techniques of cartoonists from all walks o' life.  As for myself, ideally I like to have a nice mechanical pencil on me at all times & enjoy drawing with just about anything outside of crayons and ballpoint pens.  The novelty only lasts so long... 
I'm currently neck-deep in many-a-project so I've been slacking on keeping this dog of a blahg, but I've done a lot more digital painting in Flash this week and I have a music video shoot coming up tonight so there will be plenty to see here soon.  

Monday, April 25, 2011

Lost & Foundish: Tongue Boy™ Comic Covers (1995-1998)

If you recognize any of the following drawings then I tip my hat to you, sir/ma'am... we have known each other a LONG time now.

Back in my middle school days I drew comics that I'd sell to friends and other students for fifty cents each.  It wasn't a very self-sustaining business model (I think I made about $0.02 profit for every comic sold) but it was fun to do until I started liking girls,.
I started it all in 1994 when I drew my first comic book called Stomach Man #1.  The whole story was that a mad scientist was trying to create super organs and inevitably wound up creating a whole army of evil humanoid organs, except for Stomach Man.  It was his job to stop them from advancing their evil super organ agenda.  Unfortunately that didn't last for more than an issue, and that's where Tongue Boy came in.  Up until that point I had been drawing an alter-ego version of myself since the second grade, a spikey-haired kid named Marcus (I never had hair quite like his...).  With Tongue Boy all I did was replace his hands with enormous tongues and slapped a poorly self-made costume on him.
I was influenced by many of the irreverent and weird cartoons of the time such as Ren & Stimpy, The Simpsons, Batman: TAS & most notably of all, The Tick, which aired Saturday mornings a few months after I started work on TB.  Tongue Boy didn't really have powers in that he basically just had big useless tongues for hands.  If they offered any sort of benefit, the tongues acted like big wet bludgeoning objects in which to stop thieves with.  There were lots of weird supporting characters as well, but more on that later.

Tongue Boy #1-2 (1995)
When you're young you do stupid things.  In my case, I went back and changed the cover of my first Tongue Boy comic book years after it was initially drawn.  I didn't even alter it from a photocopy!  I just put white-out directly on the original issue I had drawn and made sure it was changed forever.  It's actually very close to it's original, but I wanted the shading on Tongue Boy to match with his design in later issues.  But still stupid.
Anyway, the first issue dealt with Tongue Boy's origins (his dad accidentally used radioactive waste on a cow tongue sandwich as opposed to mayonaise) and his first victory over evil, in this case being a tiny parasite wielding a telekenetic remote control.  I'm honestly not sure if it makes sense as a story -- I'd have to go back and read them and it has been some YEARS.
The second issue of Tongue Boy revolved around Marcus finally getting to meet his childhood television idols, only to find that they've been horribly disfigured due to an accident involving (yup) toxic waste.  Desperate for work, these "Mutated Men" (pretty creative so far I know, try to keep up) begin to do work for Perry T. Parasite, brother of the parasite killed in the first book.  Unlike his brother, Perry is huge and obtained his large stature due to the overuse of parasite steroids... or something like that.  The issue ends on a cliffhanger when Tongue Boy is saved by a new hero...

Tongue Boy #3 (1996 double-issue!)
... that new "hero" was Marcus' best friend Lancy dressed up in his saliva suit going under the alias of "Drool Lad." I thought it fit the theme.  While I started out thinking Drool Lad would make for a good sidekick, he was too smart & independent of a character to get swept to the sidelines.  In the end Drool Lad became his own hero, and usually the one that would save Tongue Boy in the big fights.  While I'm still proud of how I tried to develop my characters at the time, I definitely sucked in the plot department.  After a reasonably coherent three-comic story arc, I had Perry T. Parasite succumb to the claws of a randomly introduced stray cat and subsequently all remaining parties went their separate ways.  You may remember this very same plot device being used later on in the 2007 blockbuster, Spider-Man 3.


Tongue Boy #4-5 (1996, '97)
One problem with producing small comic books out of folded standard copy paper is that you don't get a lot of room to move the story along.  These two comics made up a two-part story that introduced one of my favorite characters, Chia "Rambo" Pet.  Back in my middle school days I wanted to make a cool character that could be anything that I wanted him to be.  Maybe he wasn't particularly 'cool', but I liked Chia "Rambo" Pet a lot.  I had been drawing him since I started Tongue Boy back in '94 and introduced him as a mysterious mercenary-type character that was out to assassinate the father of the new girl at school.  One thing leads to another and Chia "Rambo" Pet attempts to blow up the whole city to destroy Tongue Boy & the gang (is it any coincidence that Independence Day came out in 1996 and I looooved it? answer: no) but after some fighting and lesson-learning, everything gets resolved.   
Not sure how that part went.  Again, it's been awhile. 


Tongue Boy #6-7 (1997, '98)
More often than not, writing Tongue Boy was a way for me to sort out all that dumb teenager stuff going on at that time in my life.  The crime-fighting superhero aspect of the comic always took second chair to whatever was going on in Marcus' personal life.  In 1997 I took a trip to France with my family and worked that into the story arc for the remainder of Tongue Boy series' run.  In this exciting chapter, the Earth has been peppered with missiles sent from Mars that contain a mysterious poison gas.  This gas manifests itself into large "cloud lawyers"... similar to the bad guy in that crappy Fern Gully movie we all may or may not remember.  They were kind of a stupid villain... I think more than anything they just helped me facilitate storytelling based around mass destruction & they didn't do anything remotely lawyer-related beyond wearing ties.  You have to keep in mind that not only was this pre-9/11 but also the best years in America to watch stuff blow up on movie screens.  Michael Bay anyone?  Looking back now I realize that even I couldn't escape those influences... cities just liked getting blowed up.


Tongue Boy #8-9

These comics were both never released.  Tongue Boy #8 probably had about a page left of inking to do and #9 was left unfinished.  These were both miles beyond the comics that had been released before them in terms of storytelling & layout, but by this time in my life I was moving from Madison, WI down to Phoenix for what turned out to be only a yearlong excursion.  That turned out to be one of those "growing up" years of my life (hair gel, shaving, etc), and although I never gave up drawing I did stop making comics on a regular basis.  We'll see if I ever get a chance to revisit these characters, they were a very important part of my life.

If I ever get more time I'll try to dig these comics up and scan the pages in... but that's probably on the lower end of my 'if list.'

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

... almost done!

Here's a screen from a stop-motion spec piece I'm doing for Lifelong Friendship Society.  If all goes as planned it should be done within a week!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Ren Hoëk Faces

On Saturday I was drawing what I can only describe as incredibly repressed-looking men with a friend for an upcoming short we're working on together.  For inspiration I turned to an old episode of Ren & Stimpy called "Stimpy's Invention" directed by John K which originally aired back in early 1992.   How has so much time gone by already?
Anyway, for those who aren't familiar this is the episode where Stimpy becomes worried that Ren is always unhappy and thus invents a Happy Helmet for him to wear.  I've never seen happy faces drawn with such unwilling intensity & misery... some of these shots made for perfect references:

I'll try to post the full clip when I have some time...