One of my favorite ongoing gigs in the world is providing artwork for the business classes given by my wife, Katie Lane.
Katie is an attorney who specializes in representing independent creators, and she also devotes a sizable chunk of her time to education – introducing current and future creative professionals to useful tools for tackling the uncreative side of the industry.
If you’re going to be talking to artists, you’d better have a compelling presentation! We’re storytellers by nature – you can’t just unload a wall of jargon-y bullet points in Times New Roman interspersed with a few pixelated stock photos and expect to blow us away.
Luckily for all of us, Katie’s a great storyteller too, and her presentations are full of relatable characters who walk (and stumble) through tricky but familiar business scenarios. And luckily for Katie, she’s married to an illustrator who loves envisioning some of these folks…
…(and getting to use her fun black/white/grey/orange color scheme).
So here are some of my favorites from one of her most recent online courses. If you’re a creative pro interested in buffing up your business skills, learning more about how contracts work, or making negotiations a little less stressful, I highly recommend Katie’s blog and Twitter feed!
A few recent art of the day entries from September/October. It was a very busy month with lots of conferences, public appearances, family visits, and travel, so I was grateful to sneak in what doodles I could!
Most of my spare drawing time was devoted to Your Distant Homeland, my short story companion for Dave Kellett’s extraordinary space opera comic Drive. I kicked off a series of guest works that will be syndicated alongside the main story over the coming year. The final page goes live on the website later this week!
Here’s the first of the story’s 14 pages. Click to visit the Drive website to read it at full size!
This past month I’ve had the pleasure of creating art with Scott Kurtz for a new tabletop card game by the world-famous game designer Jason Bulmahn! Pirate Loot is a quick-to-learn, devilish-to-play game of skull-duggery, high adventure, and competitive treasure-hoarding for up to 4 players.
The game is suit-based, which means that with each card you draw, you’ll be building a hand – er, crew – of pirates from different factions. Each faction has a different in-game behavior, enabling you to grab more treasure, steal crew from your opponents, backstab, or weasel your way out of discards!
We started out with just one pirate image per faction, but since the game has cruised past its initial $20k printing budget, these will only be the first of dozens of unique crewmembers!
Brutal faction pirate.
Greedy faction pirate.
Lazy faction pirate.
Clever faction pirate.
It’s always a blast to illustrate using Scott’s concepts and style, so I’ve been enjoying myself thoroughly. I can’t wait to illustrate the rest! You can see more at Pirate Loot’s Kickstarter page, or pledge to receive updates and get in on exclusive cards that won’t appear in the commercially sold version of the game.
New in the Illustration gallery: six images selected from Au Pays d’en Haut, a 14-piece educational serial set in 19th century French Canada! This series was a fun research challenge, and I enjoyed the excuse to test out some techniques for getting a real-media look to the fabulous digital illustration tools included in the MangaStudio software.
Click to view the set!
This year I had the honor of being included in the wee funny pages booklet that was part of Cards Against Humanity‘s Advent calendar package. A dozen cartoonists were asked to submit a standalone, one-page comic, possibly Christmas-themed. My editor was the lovely Rich Stevens.
Rich suggested I do something with the little skeletons from Danse Macabre 2.0! I liked the idea of combining wee rotting corpses with a warm holiday message. Here’s my contribution. (Click it to see it full-size.)