Monday, November 29, 2010

Monster PSA: Yvonne Craig

I literally couldn't wait to work on this one!

I got the idea for it while working on the previous Ingrid Pitt PSA, and it was sort of amazing to me I hadn't gotten around to doing a PSA portrait of the lovely (in more ways than one) Ms. Yvonne Craig, who of course hit a double in the Genre Fan Sweepstakes by being both Batgirl on Batman and the Orion Slave Girl on Star Trek.

I had first thought of doing the portrait of her as Batgirl (where she helped usher the young pre-teen version of me into puberty), but that quickly gave way to this more sexy look in the service of promoting libraries, which I thought tied it into the Barbara Gordon/Batgirl thing nicely.

I had the chance to meet Ms. Craig at a comic con around 2000 or so, and she was so sweet as the ten millionth overgrown fanboy told her how important she was to them growing up.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Monster PSA: Ingrid Pitt

This Monster PSA poster was kind of eerie to work on.

Yesterday, I was just finishing up the last illustration for a large advertising job, and as I am wont to do, having movies on in the background. I've been watching a lot of Hammer Films lately, catching up on the ones I've never seen. Case in point, I put on The Vampire Lovers, a sort of lesbian vampire movie starring Ingrid Pitt as the vampire who crosses all sorts of boundaries.

After I finished the last client piece, I decided to do another Monster PSA poster, this time starring the legendary Ms. Pitt--I had not yet given her her own PSA, even though she played both monster and victim in numerous Hammer films. On top of that, because of the big ad job, I hadn't posted anything new on this blog in a couple of days, and I really wanted to put something up.

So just before I started to work, I noticed a friend's Facebook page that said Ingrid Pitt had just died! I did a double take, because the timing of it was so bizarre. I followed the link, and the sad news was true--Ms. Pitt, age 77, had passed away.

Once I read that (and duly changed my FB page's avatar to a pic of Ingrid), I was determined to put this poster together to have it up for the following day.

For whatever reason, this one was a lot harder than they usually are--I tried two different portraits, that as portraits were fine, but once I plugged them into the PSA poster format, they all of a sudden didn't work--something about the lights and darks and the overall shapes. But I refused to give up, finally completing a third portrait that worked when placed onto the Monster PSA poster, which is what you see above.

This poster's message isn't really a PSA--rather, I just wanted to reflect that schism many a horror movie fan felt when they saw Ingrid Pitt in a movie. Was she a victim, or was she the victimizer? Rarely have actresses had the ability to be believable as both, yet she pulled it off.

Rest in Peace, Ingrid Pitt.

Friday, November 19, 2010

ACA at Bark Radio!

My pal (and all-around sweetheart) Laura Menck, creator of the awesome Animal Care for Artists (for which I did the logo, above) appeared on the radio show Bark Radio, and at one point she was kind enough to mention me and my work (aw, shucks!). Go check it out!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Time Out New York: Aasif Mandvi

I was asked to do this week's "Hot Seat" portrait for Time Out New York, the subject this time being actor/comedian Aasif Mandvi!

Like most people, I'm familiar with Mr. Mandvi as a correspondent on The Daily Show, but he's also an actor, having appeared in a number of films and has several more to come.

Since starting the Hot Seats back in 2006, I've had the chance to do portraits of Stephen Colbert, Steve Carrel, Ed Helms, Rob Riggle, and Olivia Munn. I can only hope TONY taps me if/when they interview Jon Stewart, Lewis Black, Samantha Bee, Jason Jones, or Larry Wilmore!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Chiller TV Spots

Some of my Monster PSA posters were chosen to appear as set decoration in two TV spots for the Chiller TV network.

And while those spots aren't yet finished, here are some stills from the ads--as you can see, there are my posters on the wall of Chiller TV's lunchroom, and they make a super-quick appearance in postcard form on the wall of a Chiller TV employee's cubicle.

I had the chance to go to NYC and watch the commercials be filmed, which was a cool, informative experience. I was thrilled Chiller TV liked my posters enough to want to use them like this, and I can't wait to see the finished spots!

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Invisible Man @ The Chiller Theatre

I'm giving the From The Vault segment the week off to post this pic that was sent to me by my pal Rob Tullo.

This was a homemade Invisible Man model kit, entered in a Halloween contest at the Chiller Theatre last month. And as you can see, the modeler went ahead and used my Invisible Man poster as a piece of decoration. Pretty nifty, and quite a compliment in its own way.

Rob is great at finding stuff like this--usually its an example of me getting ripped off, but this time its a-ok. Thanks Rob!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

11 Acorn Lane, Pt. 2

Back in December 2009, I did this CD cover art for 11 Acorn Lane's Everybody's Here album, which was a lot of fun.

The band wrote me the other day to let me know that they're still getting use out of my portrait, first on their Amazon page, slightly amended for the season:
sg well as in the animated video for their cover of the holiday classic "Deck The Halls":

...ginchy! Thanks, guys!!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Monster PSA: Lee Van Cleef

I haven't done a Monster PSA posters in ages, and this one really makes a shambles of that designation--not only did Lee Van Cleef never play a monster of any sort, he never even appeared in anything like a horror movie (even form-busting subjects like Margot Kidder was in at least one genuine horror film).

But when I was working on the portrait of Mr. Van Cleef for my "Tough Guy" series, I realized it'd be cool to draw him doing what he's most associated with--brandishing a gun. So I figured what the hell, a sentiment I think he'd get behind.

This was one of those instances where I let the image decide what the tag line would be, a sound piece of advice in any situation, I think.

Friday, November 5, 2010

From The Vault: "White Dress" - 2006

Another piece done as pure experiment, to see if I could achieve some sort painterly effect via Photoshop. This piece doesn't really do that, and I've seen gone on to create that look via the program. So this one was just a tiny stop on that road.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Robert Mitchum

Probably the most quintessential Movie Tough Guy, Robert Mitchum!

I had lots of pics of Mr. Mitchum to perm through, but I loved this one, with his hair a tousled mess and looking like he didn't give a damn.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Pretty self-explanatory...go out and vote.

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Misadventures of Halloween Harriet

Sure, this cover is a day out of date, but bear with me.

I had an idea for a Halloween-centric faux-vintage paperback book cover sometime early in the year. Always having other ideas to work on, I put the raw materials I had on hand in a folder and told myself I'd work on it later in the year, closer to Halloween.

Of course, just a few days ago it dawned on me I hadn't worked on this thing at all, with Halloween just a few days away. So I could either work on it immediately and post it on 11/1, or wait until next year, when I'm sure the same thing would happen all over again. So, here it is.

This one is a complete fabrication on my part--I knew there wouldn't be any Halloween-ish paperback books I could borrow a title from, so I just made it all up myself. Pivoting off of the central image, I came up with a cheeky, nudie-type paperback, rather than a mystery/thriller.

The whole thing came together rather quickly, the last element added being the little white "bubbles" in the background, which to me felt reminiscent of the kind of thing you see emanating from glasses of champagne, something Halloween Harriet surely down a lot of in this story.