dinosaur

T-Shirt Tuesday – T-Rex Edition

A bit of a change of pace after the parade of guitars the past few weeks. Here’s a sequel to my old Struttin’ T-Rex shirt:

Struttin 2.0 Shirt

And you can find it in my RedBubble store .

Cheers.


And then it was April.

Here we are, a quarter of the year already done. The first big show of 2013 is over (and a damn successful one it was), and two more are in the works. Longterm strategies are being developed, and new venues and opportunities being explored.

Creatively I feel incredibly positive. The ideas just won’t stop coming, I’m happier with my drawing skills than ever before, and I keep thinking of new variations on my metalflake technique. This in particular is pleasing, given that I’ve finished 102 of these paintings and currently have another 17 in the works (obviously I don’t ever want this to turn into some sort of assembly-line process; frankly I think that having assistants do the bulk of your work for you borders on the fraudulent).

With the Hot Pink show and the Christmas Metalflake series, I played around with the technique, sometimes out of necessity, and other times just out of curiosity. I did several paintings with pulverized Christmas balls worked into the strata for texture and reflectivity. And the other day it occurred to me that I could also use gold leaf in my backgrounds.

This experiment turned out even better than I’d anticipated. And it got me thinking about some other new possibilities.

A few specifics, then, before the conversation takes a turn for the personal. The Ocean Rain show, which you’ve already seen hints of, is progressing nicely. Expect an announcement regarding this very soon – we’re hoping for an early May launch date.

The show after that will most likely use superheroes and science fiction as its launching point.

After that I’d like to do something with an automotive theme, and of course we’ll be doing something Christmassy as well, in the fall (truth be told, we’ve probably got ideas for a dozen shows). Also in the fall, we’ll be releasing a book and/or calendar of T-Rex illustrations. Three of them are done already, and the Agent and I have been brainstorming on lots more.

And by this time next year I want to have my work in galleries.

So, enough business. Let’s talk about what else has been going on. Last year, as documented again and again (and AGAIN ), felt like some sort of trial to me. One trauma after another, month in, month out. By November I was a bit of a mess.

I can’t pinpoint any one specific moment when the game changed (unlike, say, in 2011), but a lot of minor victories added up to help pull me out of my funk.

And this process continued through January and February, to the point where I finally feel like I’ve gotten my groove back (I won’t lie; I was extremely worried about that, and for a long, long time). Friends and family have done their part to help, chance encounters have led to new opportunities… and inspiration? Inspiration is EVERYWHERE . I’m on fire creatively.

I’m back , baby.

Bret Taylor
Vancouver, BC
April, 2013.


Unless you’re a newcomer to this site, you probably know that I recently completed a thousand consecutive days of art. Every one of those days, from January 1/2010 – October 1/2012, I drew and/or painted, without fail.

One thousand days.

As time went on, the numbers actually began to mean less and less to me. Because it was really about the journey, of course. About what I learned, where I went, how I changed.

The past few years have been challenging, to say the least. Apart from the financial hardships of the recession and its aftermath, one thing I’ve been struggling with is the lack of structure in my life (I’m a freelancer, by the way). So the added benefits to this extended art experiment are just that – structure, purpose, direction.

For a long time people were asking me what I planned to do on the final day. I considered several options, because I wanted to do something momentous. But in the end these options fell through, so I decided that the best course of action would be…

… Business as Usual.

After all, I had a show to prepare for. Paintings to finish, logistics to be sorted out, all sorts of promotional work to do. Putting on an art show is no small task.

So when I got up that morning, I did a quick little sketch, just in case:

That way if the sun exploded or we got invaded by zombies, at least I could still say I reached the 1000th day.

(Fortunately they didn’t. But hey, you never know.)

After that it was back to the metalflake dinosaur paintings. Since my T-Rex sketch from back in February was the central image in my upcoming show, I decided that finishing one of those pieces would be my best bet. And that just seemed fitting – it tied in with the show, with my calendar, and any number of other peripheral art ventures. Plus it was inspired in the first place by the person who’s made the biggest mark in my life during the Project – my Agent and former Muse.

So there you have it. One thousand days. I painted and drew a lot, I learned a lot, I sweated and bled, and I’m still standing.

Oh, and one more thing: I’m already working an art book based on the experience. Watch this space for further details.


Welcome back, and thanks for joining us. It’s been a few days since the Dinosaur Show – time spent recovering and regrouping, for the most part. It seems that the bigger these events get, the more time it takes to bounce back.

And this was definitely a BIG event.

Earth-shaking, even.

The excitement all started Friday night, with a trip to imagemaker photographic studio to hang the show. This is part of the process that I always stress needlessly about, as it usually goes off without much of a hitch. In this particular case, the positioning and hanging of the paintings was a breeze; it was just the peripherals (a display for posters and calendars, for instance) that raised questions.

That night I slept well, which has never happened the night before a show till now. Come to think of it, I slept pretty well for most of the preceeding two weeks.

In the morning I was up early, running last-minute errands in the rain. We were at the studio doing last-minute setup by 1:00PM…

… and then it was showtime. My friend Cindy, who moved here recently from Ontario, snapped up the medium-sized T-Rex almost immediately after we opened the doors. Technically that was the second sale of the show, though, because John from HogShack had already spoken for one of the struttin’ T-Rex paintings.

Over the next six hours lots of people came in, often with young dinosaur fans in tow. Talked to old friends, met some people I’d previously only talked to online, sold a few paintings, and all in all had a great afternoon.

And then it was 8:00. The afterparty started.

The Agent was outfitted in a custom T-Rex top, and we also had hot pink T-Rex buttons made:

The people who got into the dinosaur theme the most, though, were Candice Roach and Danny Parker. Candice made a cake especially for the show, and Dan brought not only a T-Rex hat, but a full-on dinosaur COSTUME :

I kept thinking we’d hit the point where people were more focused on the party than the art, but then, miraculously, a few more paintings would sell. The final tally: 14 paintings sold out of a possible 17.

Did I mention there were drinks? Cake? Sandwiches and pumpkin pie cheesecake that my friend Melissa Jones so thoughtfully contributed? That people came from all over the place just for the show?

I’ve gotta say, the show of support never gets old.

Things wrapped up pretty quickly around 1:00AM. The day was done, the show a success.

Thanks, first of all, to the people who bought my paintings, posters and prints: John Lim Hing, Cindy McShane, Nic & Todd Cruickshank, Lori Kittelberg and George Smeltzer, Lindsay Bayne, Christine Warner, Geoff Gauthier, Irving Lau, Mark Crater, Candice Roach, Krista Lee, Amanda West, Donna Jay-Crowe, and all the people who bought buttons.

These lovely people couldn’t make the show (which will always happen) but were still kind enough to send along apologies and/or encouragement anyway: Chantal Michaud, Kate MacDonald, Lynn McIlwee, Jackie McCaughan, Adam & Corinna Carlson, Lyndsey MacEwen, Jewel Staite, Crystal Witty, Ceci Graber, Erin Kyle, and Jeff Hornby.

And of course, how could I forget my agent, Tess McCann? We’ve been through a lot together in the 14 months since we met, and this show actually started with her posting T-Rex cartoons on her Facebook wall in the early part of 2012. Thanks for everything, Tess. At the risk of repeating myself, this wouldn’t even be possible without your help.

(Photos courtesy of Danny Parker, Ned Tobin, Amanda West, Lindsay Bayne, Krista Lee, John Lim Hing, and John Watson.)


So I was drinking with friends last weekend, and the subject of the dinosaur art show came up. Next thing we knew…

As always, you can find this in .


T-Shirt Thursday, Round 12

Whipped up a brand new dinosaur tee last night:

As always, you can buy it in .

Edit: by popular demand, here’s a with a larger raptor, centered in the design.


Thoughts on the Dino Show, and a Question.

All sorts of fun things going on here in preparation for the next art show in October. You may have already seen the t-shirts and the new calendar , but there are also 18 new metalflake paintings in the works. Right now they’re scattered all around my studio, in various states of completion.

Here’s a sneak peek:

We’ve got paintings as small as 3×4 inches, and as large as 20×20. Some will have designs based on the illustrations in my calendar, and some will have designs that are just rough concepts at the moment (hey, there’s still plenty of time). Just the other day, for example, the Agent and I were talking and she suggested doing paintings based on dinosaur fossils.

Clearly she’s a genius, because this opened up whole new areas of creativity for me. This T-Rex skull design is already on a t-shirt , but on a metalflake painting I think it’ll blow people’s minds:

I’ve also got an idea in mind that involves revamping the whole metalflake technique so it’s even more three-dimensional. But that may have to wait for another show.

There may also be some other dinosaur-related merchandise available, but that’s still top-secret for now. Mum’s the word.

While I’ve got your attention, what’s your favourite dinosaur?


T-Shirt Thursday, Round 08

This week’s t-shirt just had to be another dinosaur, with the show announcement a couple days ago.

You can buy it right here .


DINOSAURS.

For your consideration:

Facebook event page is here , and in case you’re not on Facebook:

Whether you love the ferocity of the mighty T-Rex or the docile nature of the brachiosaurus, dinosaurs hold a special spot in most of our hearts. As children we were fascinated by these ancient creatures and for many of us, the fascination never died.

It certainly didn’t for artist Bret Taylor, and he is celebrating them with an art show of earth-shaking proportion.

So join us on Oct 13th and celebrate all things dinosaur. The show starts at 2pm and is kid friendly until 8pm, at which point we invite the over 19 to stay and celebrate with us. There will be dinosaur art and dinosaur collectibles, you may even find a few snacks for both carnivore and herbivore. Non-alcoholic refreshments will be available and should you choose to indulge in an adult drink or two, you are more than welcome to bring your own, but remember that until 8pm this is a child friendly show.

For more information on the artist:

Kid and adult friendly show 2pm – 8pm
Afterparty (adults only) 8pm – midnight

Imagemaker Photographic Studio, 210-2075 Yukon Street, Vancouver

Thanks as always to my agent, who continues to amaze and astound me with her knowledge, skills and attention to detail.


A brand new piece in the t-shirt store tonight. Special thanks to my agent Tess and my friend Lynn for their encouragement on this one. And to Cynthia for wanting to get together and draw last week.

Oh, and you can buy the shirt right here .


Protoceratops:


Okay, now that the Metal Flake Remix show is out of the way, it’s time for…

… more dinosaurs. Spinosaurus :

(Another one I first saw in the Extreme Dinosaurs exhibit.)


At long last, a new dinosaur. This is another one I saw in the Extreme Dinosaurs exhibit, the Carnotaurus:

Still plenty more to come. Maybe another T-Rex?


Shockingly, yet another daily-picture project has gone off the rails in a major way. Theoretically, the dinosaurs should’ve been done almost a month ago, but no dice. Work and life have gotten in the way, as they often do.

At any rate, I’m finally making use of the photo reference I shot at Science World last weekend. This particular beastie is from the same family as the triceratops, protoceratops and kosmoceratops. Can’t for the life of me remember what it’s called, but hopefully some kindly and knowledgeable dinosaur dork can fill me in:


There is much news on the dinosaur front, my friends. Many more of them to draw – I went to the exhibit at Science World yesterday with friends, and I got tons of reference photos and ideas.

They had full-size, moving, interactive mockups of the dinosaurs, plus several fossil skeletons:

So my new plan is, I want to do an all-dinosaur show – books, calendars, t-shirts, prints, you name it. I’ve already got a available in my print store, and a handful of t-shirts already. Still a lot of details and strategies to be sorted, but I think this one’s really got some potential – already sold one of the T-Rex shirts.
I’ll keep you posted.

Finally back to the dino project tonight, with the alectrosaurus:

Really enjoying drawing the carnivorous beasties more than the others.


Hey there. It’s been awhile, hasn’t it? Been caught up in a couple of large paintings, and of course, being sick.

Fortunately I’m recovering, so here’s an apatosaurus for you folks:

In other dinosaur-related news, the T-Rex piece from a couple weeks ago is now available in my print store . And for today (Leap Day) only, everything in the store is 25% off. The code to use is LEAP25.


Okay, so things have delayed a little by personal matters the past few days. But without further ado, here is your latest dinosaur, the Stegoceras:

Not the most handsome creature in the Jurassic era, to be sure.


In our latest installment, the guest of honour is the Ankylosaurus:


Say it with me, now: “Compsognathus.”

I love these little beasts. Apparently they were about the size of a turkey.

Six dino illustrations down, twenty-three to go.


Another fun day in the studio – woke up early, puttered around the place for awhile, and finally buckled down to draw this Hadrosaur:

This has definitely been the most fun dinosaur to draw yet, although the T-Rex did come close.


So after a herbivore (“veggie-saurus”) last night, I wanted to draw something a big more… ferocious. Enter the Allosaurus:

Nasty creature. Apparently he could jump, too.


Day three brings us the mighty Stegosaurus:

(Are Stegosauri mighty? I’m not even sure. I just know I’m lovin’ this project.)


Well, all the excitement over the Triceratops earlier led me directly to Mr. Tyrannosaurus Rex:

Banged this one out in a couple hours tonight. This project is so much more fun than the shotglasses, it ain’t funny.


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