Sunday, December 19, 2010

Watts Atelier 2011 Winter Schedule

The NEW Winter 2011 class schedule for the Watts Atelier is available. The Fall term has just ended and we recommend early registration for the next term. Classes fill up quick. The new session starts January 11th. Here is a list of classes I will be teaching:

Tuesdays 2:30-5:30pm

Tuesdays 7:00pm-10:00pm

Thursdays 10:00am-1:00pm

Thursdays 2:30pm-5:30pm

Click on a class above to be directed to the class page. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Goblin Corps Book Cover

Here is the cover I did for Ari Marmell's Goblin Corps book due out third quarter of next year. Most of you have seen this since it was part of my IlluXCon post, but here it is with tile and all. I got to read the manuscript for this book and it's a good one! Think, LOTR meets Inglorious Bastards. It follows a band of elite, evil warriors who are sent on several secret, suicide missions for The Dark Lord's campaign. You will find yourself rooting for the "bad guys". Head on over to Ari's site for more info:

Ari Marmell

Sunday, December 12, 2010

New WoW Illustrations: Worldbreaker Set

Here are a few new WoW illustrations from the new Worldbreaker set. All of these are oil on masonite.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Watts Atelier - Student Years: Gouache Class

I thought I'd try a new post section. I'm calling it "Watts Atelier - Student Years". This will be some of my studies and memories from when I was a full time student. I still consider myself a student and probably always will be, however this will be a record of my first few years at The Atelier. I will share some of my drawings, paintings, and how The Watts Atelier has helped me become the artist I am today.

The first post of this series is about the Gouache classes that the school has. I found this to be a great transitional class between drawing and paintings. The way the media is taught is very much like drawing with a little extra. In this class is where I was first introduced to the term "Tiling". The term refers to a shape placed next to another shape with an assigned value and color that will give the illusion of form rolling into or away from light. Tiling helped me build a discipline in how I approached each piece of art. I had to understand the nuts and bolts to give each tile it's accurate shape and value.

Gouache is a media that I love to use. Of course it does have it's idiosyncrasies, like lighter values drying darker and darker values drying lighter. In the beginning, trying to figure out how much water to use with how much paint can be a challenge. The reward in the end though is great! I still use gouache for color comps, small master studies, and even just for sketching. It's a media that is easy to travel with, easy to clean up, and relatively inexpensive.

The Gouache classes I took at The Atelier were pivotal in my education. Gouache was a great bridge for when I went from drawing to oil painting and I still carry a lot over from gouache into my oils. If you ever get the chance to study gouache with someone who does it well, I highly recommend it!

Friday, November 19, 2010

On The Shelves: IlluXCon Splurge!

One of my favorite parts of going to conventions is the chance to pick up books and sketchbooks by my favorite artists. I got to pick up a bunch of books I've been wanting to get for a while and found a few that were new to me and was happy to snag. So here is a list of my spendthrift's from IlluXCon.

Donato's Lord of the Rings book...need I say more.

Visions of Middle Earth

Steve Prescott had copies of his sketchbook Aggregate. He did an awesome sketch in it for me. Thanks Steve!


Robh Ruppel's, Aspect Ratio book is so cool. It's a collection of some of his concept and sketch work.

Aspect Ratio

Justin Gerard also had a sketchbook book. I tried to give him my money, but he insisted that we traded up. I gave him a couple of prints and he gave me a copy of his Silverage sketchbook. I still think I got the better end of this deal!

The Silverage

Dave Palumbo had copies of his Quickie book at the show. It's a collection of his gallery work.

Quickie 2010

Now I already had this, before the show, but I thought I'd give Daren a plug. He was selling his book with sketches at the show. Another great book!

Art of Daren Bader

Scott Altmann had a sketchbook with a lot of his paintings, I meant to pick this up but forgot before I left. Sorry Scott, save one for me!

Scott Altmann Sketchbook

I also picked up a book by Petar Meseldzija, The Legend of Steel Bashaw. I've seen his work in Spectrum on numerous occasions and got to see a few of his pieces in person. That guy can paint! He's got a large copy of that book that I didn't get the opportunity buy.

The Legend of Steel Bashaw

Also picked up the new IlluXCon show book!

IlluXConcepts 2

I didn't actually pick this one up, I had it waiting for me when I got home. I was tempted to buy one anyway though!

Spectrum 17

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Back From IlluXCon!

Wow! What an amazing time. I got to meet a lot of new people and see some old friends I haven't seen in a while. A group of us traveled out together and what a great time it was. We left a day early to visit a couple of museums. We saw the Philadelphia Museum of Art and The Brandywine. This was my second trip to Brandywine and it's definitley better the second time around.

I displayed some new work which I've posted below.

Stoutheart Soldier, Oil on masonite 11x14 - Legends of Norrath Card. Copyright Sony

Goblin Corp, Oil on masonite 24x18 - Fantasy Novel Cover. Copyright Pyr

Lacedon Infestation, Oil on masonite 24x18 - Dungeon Cover. Copyright Wizards of the Coast

I also picked up a number of books from various artists. I'll make a post on those in the next couple of days. For now, I need to catch up on some sleep.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Off To IlluXCon!

I'm just about to walk out the door to drive into San Diego to catch my flight. Before I left I wanted to leave those of you who won't be able to make it out there with a preview of one of the pieces I will be displaying. I'll catch you all in a week!

Friday, November 5, 2010

New Dungeon E-Magazine Cover

The new Dungeon E-Mag cover came out for this month. I'll have the full(20x16)painting for sale at IlluXCon this, next week! If you're going to make it out to IlluXCon, make sure to stop by and say hi.

Dungeon Magazine #184

Monday, October 25, 2010

New Blog: Muddy Colors

I just came across this new blog that a group of some of my favorite illustrators have put together. It's a colaboration from artists: Dan Dos Santos, Jesper Ejsing, Eric Fortune, Justin Gerard, Donato Giancola, Arnie Fenner, Jon Foster, Greg Manchess, and John J. Palencar. So, head on over and check it out if you haven't seen it already.

Muddy Colors Blog

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Tournament of the Phoenix 2010

One of the best ways to get inexpensive fantasy reference is to head over to the local Renaissance Fairs. I try to make it to at least a few a year. There is one fair in particular that is unique to the others. The Tournament of the Phoenix! I was lucky to catch this event a couple of years ago, and from here on out I think I'll make it a yearly thing. At this fair, they have all of the same things you might find at any Ren Fair, with the exception of one thing...full contact Jousting!

A group of people from all over the world get together and hold tournaments. Just like in medieval times. They have Jousting, Skill at Arms, Archery, and various other competitions. Each event is narrated by a professional who turns each event into a great informative show.

I use the opportunity to snap hundreds of pictures. Everything from the action to details on armor. I was at this event this weekend for about 3 1/2hrs and I shot almost 900 pictures. Maybe I should just get a digital camcorder.

I even came away with a little souvenir. One vendor had a really cool display of handmade leather sketchbooks. Full with cotton paper. I couldn't pass this up!

Here are a couple of sketches from some of the reference I shot.

Friday, October 15, 2010

On The Shelves - "Catalog Raisonné on William Bouguereau"

FINALLY!!! I pre-ordered this book 3-4 years ago, back when it was first announced. Let me start by was well worth the wait!! All of the delays this book went through was done to make this the ultimate Bouguereau collection, and let me tell you, this is the ultimate Bougereau collection.

The Catalog Raisonné comes in a 2 volume set and both books are great. One book is about his life and work, which is quite extensive. The second book is a catalog of all his work with photos ranging from 1/4pg to full page and from black and white to color. My concern was that they were going to try and cut corners with printing a lot of black and white photos. This is not the case. The amount of full page color work in these books is great! There are very few pages that have no pictures, and with both books totalling 903 pages, they didn't pull any punches.

Now lets talk $, because if you want to own this book set, you're really going to have to pay for it. I paid $350 for an unsigned copy from the Art Renewal Center. They have a signed(by the people who put the collection together) copy of the book for $450. Now, Amazon has the book listed at $261.34, but has it listed as "Not yet released". So, I'm not sure how sure a thing that price is. I'm a little bumbed that I paid $350 at Art Renewal Center when Amazon is offering it at $90 less, but I'm just happy that I've got the collection.

If you're a fan of Bouguereau's work, this is a must have. ARC really did an amazing job on this!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Portrait Study

This was done as a study in a class I taught. The class size was kind of small the last week so I took advantage and did a small painting. It's 14x11 oil on canvas board and I spent about an hour and a half on it.

20 Minute Head Studies

I fianlly made it into a class to get some training in. I've been so busy with illustration work that I've been neglecting my study time. I found that I just have to make time to take class, otherwise I'll always be "too busy". This was a page I did in our 20 Minute Head Lay-in class. Each head is around 20min.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

IlluXCon 2010 Teaser

IlluXCon 3 is right around the corner and I still have tons of work to do before the show. Last year was such an amazing convention. I got to see a lot of great work and meet a lot of great people. At this years IlluXCon I will have lots of new original work for sale as well as original drawings, prints, and artist proof cards. Displayed above is a small teaser of some of the new work I will have displayed. I hope to see a lot of you I saw last year!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Lucas' Influence Map 2010

So here is my current influence map. I say current because there are always new artists and other influences makeing their way into my life. It will be interesting to do this in a year or two to see what's changed. These are by no means my only influences either. There are just too many people that influence me to all fit on this tiny map. So if you don't see you're work up on here, it's nothing personal.

New WoW Illustrations

Here are a couple of new World of Warcraft TCG illos I did for the Icecrown set. Both oil on masonite.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Watts Atelier 2010 Fall Schedule

The NEW Fall 2010 class schedule for the Watts Atelier is available. We are on the last week of our Summer term, and recommend early registration for the next term. Classes fill up quick. Classes start October 11th. Here is a list of classes I will be teaching:





Click on a class above to be directed to the class page.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Artwork On A Mousepad

Sony is now selling prints and mousepads with a couple of images I did for their Legends of Norrath series. Pretty cool. Sony Online Store

Friday, August 20, 2010

Illustration Sketches

Here are some examples of my final drawings for various illustrations. After the rough sketch is approved by the art director, I shoot my reference and then do a tighter drawing that I will later transfer to my painting surface.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Lord of the Rings Illustrations

Those of you who know me well, know that I'm the biggest fan of LOTR...That's right bigger than any of you! =) I finally got the chance to work on a LOTR card game and I couldn't be more excited! Here are my contributions.

"Gandalf the Grey" - 11x14 oil on masonite

"Radagast's Cunning" - 12x16 oil on masonite

Friday, August 6, 2010

Chesley Award!

Some big news here! I just got a call from my friend John Picacio informing me that I've won the category I was nominated for in the Chesley nominations. Irene Gallo has put up the list of winners on the Tor website. Congrats to all of the winners!

Tor Article

Charcoal Demos and Warm-ups: Spring Term 2010

Here are a few of my demos from last term at the Watts Atelier. All of these are charcoal on newsprint and about 25min each.